Why my dad rocks

Sunday, July 24, 2005

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Dad, if you're reading, cheers to you.
I keep wishing I could just pick up the phone and call him ... like I always have been able to.

My dad rocks because
He's silly!
He's generous.
He really loves my mom.
He's calm during emergency situations.
He makes cool cartoons of cats, dinosaurs, or whatever the situation demands.
He's really creative.
He grows a beautiful beard.
He's not ashamed to do a little kung foo fighting when necessary... waaabang.
He thinks I should have my own thesaurus for all my made-up lingo.
He has great taste in movies.
He once permed his hair.
He showed me where an airplane engine is!
He's rough around the edges.
We watched Little House on the Prairie, Bonanza, and McClintock together.

There's more.
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Consumerism... errr... What's your currency, Jack?

Saturday, July 23, 2005

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Ok, while slingin sticks (of the bread variety), I've been thinking...

America is famous for the way her people scarf and horde clothing, trinkets, television, and hamburgers...among other things, I suppose.

The "third world" has a reputation for hunger, dirt floors, disease, mental starvation...among other things, I suppose.

In the US, our currency is the almighty doll.ar. We imagine we're short on time.
PICTURE JACK: He's a gentleman schooled in the law. He drives a Hummer and wears only peach neckties for fear of blending in among his lawyer friends. He drinks apple martinis every night after work, has his shoes shined every morning, and brings his wife orchids on Thursdays. His wife coordinates the housekeeper and chef schedules and makes sure the nanny gets her Christmas bonus. Jack can't remember the last time he purchased anything. He upgrades. Upgrades the car. Upgrades the furniture. Upgrades the house. It's natural. It's success. It's the American dream.

Perhaps in "the third world", their currency is passion/time/?.
PICTURE TOON: He's a simple man --a buffalo herder. Once, he walked in a bank and couldn't sign his name. He's not embarrased, though. Buffalo can't read. Toon unrolls his mat next to his beasts and sleeps after the sun sets. Another day dawns the same as the first. The same as the last. Toon isn't sure how old he is. It doesn't matter. He doesn't wonder who hung the sky. Why should he? He treads, one bare foot in front of another bare foot in front of a hundred hooves... and doesn't worry about a thing. It doesn't matter.

My wondering....(don't worry, my point is coming).
When we, as a western world, take our values (Good looking shelter, good looking clothes, and three squares a day make a healthy/successful life) and try to judge the world: "Oh, Martha, look at that family living in a hovel", we're shocked and appalled at the condition of most of the world. The two-week analysis yields a b&w memory of "consumerism versus poverty" or "wealth versus need" or "the corporate giant versus the mom and pop" err.. hmmm...

Yes, disease is more likely to manifest itself in dirty conditions.

Our friend Jack invests his money in the cush life.
Our friend Toon invests his passions in nothing.
Jack spends money on stuff.
Toon spends thoughts on the next footstep.

Maybe I'm rambling or maybe I'm still trying to work out my own thoughts. Boundaries between the third and first worlds aren't as stark as they once were in my mind. Whether someone is trying to fill the void in their hearts with stuff or with a substantial "nothingness", it's still hopeless striving. The third world lives with a consumerism that is just as extreme as the western version, it's just quieter. It's a different type of consumption. That's my point.

To bed.
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Friday, July 22, 2005

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Because of the weather conditions changing in Indonesia (err...tsunami?) and other vanilla producing countries, the price of the fragrant beans is about $1.50 per bean. What if coffee were $1.50 per bean? chocolate?

Vanilla. It's such a unique smell and is one of the basic flavors in so many western desserts. What would the world be like without it? Who knew that some sludge scraped from the inside of bean skin could be so lovely??

Enough about that.
Back to work.
Four more days of class.

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Professional Tests, Higher Education, and Gumbo

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

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Wooh! I passed the ETS test that certifies me to be a librarian. This moment, I'm sitting in a teaching lab at our local university. I'm taking a two-week crash course in web design. It feels good to be in class. I just like school...er...or maybe this is the honeymoon phase. I'm rambling, but it has been a while, ay?
My question: Who would make the best gumbo? Mere Charlotte in N'awlins who learned in her grandma's kitchen or Lena, who studied at a culinary school in the same city? What does a degree really prove?

It surprised me how many of my co-workers are degreed. Last night, I shared a section of tables with this great girl who has her MBA. Yeah.

That's all. Back to abstracts.


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