Tag Archives: california

This is why we can’t have nice things

Bishop, CA Petroglyphs at Bishop by Cave Art Gal

Apparently, a group of people (I’m assuming because how could 1 person pull this heist?) decided that the petroglyphs of the Paiute people in Bishop, CA, that had survived the elements for thousands of years, needed to move to a new location. And aside from taking 5 of the drawings with them, they managed to destroy several of the other remaining images.

Seriously, who wakes up one day and decides that what they should really do with their time before the sun sets is haul a concrete saw, ladder, and generator up on a hike so that they can add weight to haul back with drawings older than the European presence on the continent? And damage the ones they decided to leave behind just to ensure that future generations of people from around the world won’t get to experience the magnificence of an original people who still go to worship at the site.

I don’t even think that these people took lessons from the lady who restored the ecco homo picture of Jesus earlier this year. At least, though she failed spectacularly, her intentions were grounded in the desire to preserve an image that inspires many on the planet. These people must have been motivated by something else. Greed? Hoarder tendencies? Psychopathic levels of desire to inflict further insult to the Paiute people?

I don’t know. But I know that these thieves have images that belong to the Paiute people and everyone on the planet concerned with keeping our record on this planet in a form we can all access. And, because of their carelessness, since they obviously didn’t consider how stealing the carvings would affect everyone who cares about the preservation of our history, the people who go to visit the site in Bishop, CA, will have fewer instances where they can stand in awe.

Their actions demonstrate the level of thoughtlessness that I fear is becoming more prevalent. It could just be that my age is beginning to show, but it could also be that I just notice these stories more because my life experience connects them to me. Because these irreplaceable icons mark the path we as people have taken to get where we currently are in the journey. They are the photographs and ephemera in the scrapbook of humanity; the fragments that hold us together as we continue along the way.

Life passes so quickly and is quite fragile, and we need the tangible markers to show those who come after us where we’ve been so that we don’t forget. Each of these markers freeze the chaos and turmoil of life and trap it in a form that we can share. So when those markers are destroyed, we all lose, and it’s this irrevocable loss that makes me sad, when it can’t be helped (as with the Twelve Apostles), and makes me angry when it can, such as this instance.

Because how can a person be so selfish that they can’t share? This inability to share is why we can’t have nice things.

Orange County DREAM Team and how being present is the important lesson

TRUST Act rally in front of Anaheim Police Department 16 September 2012 via Orange County DREAM Team’s Facebook page

As anyone who has been around this blog can attest, I am quite passionate about the things that matter to me. Most of those things only matter to a small number of other people on the planet (like the proper use of colons or my newest favorite album or book), but I am not bother by the small number of other people who share my passions.

And then I have this entire other set of passions that I don’t talk about with everyone as much.

But today, I participated in my first ever chanting-on-the-street-corner rally with a group that I have supported since I finally realized they existed (because I’m occasionally quite obtuse), so I decided this is a great time to share.

You might have heard about something called the DREAM Act and a group of nebulous entities who have been called lots of things, from aliens to illegals to undocumented (and numerous other derogatory names. I call them my friends. Or my students. Or the future.

And while I’ll probably post more about their plight, history, desires, and options in the future, this post isn’t about that. This post is about how I finally learned from my friends the reason for these kinds of rallies.

Continue reading Orange County DREAM Team and how being present is the important lesson

Thank you for participating in security

“Thank you for participating in security.”*

This statement from the TSA is one of the more annoying aspects of flying today.

Because the statement assumes 1.) That what they’re doing is helping avert disasters 2.) That our compliance is in no way coerced 3.) That we have to need of 4 year olds to receive positive affirmation 4.) That we’re players.

And I’m just gonna stop there.

The statement appears on the first signs in the Secure Area (of at least the LAX/Ontario airport in California), which helps to manipulate all of us into compliance by assuming we will be.

The condescension also assists in putting everyone in their place by subtlety demonstrating that whatever power we may think we have disappears upon entry into the line. It’s the tone people who dislike children take when they think the kid’s being smart. Continue reading Thank you for participating in security

Heat Wave

Heat WaveHeat Wave, the first book in the Nikki Heat series by Richard Castle, is a pretty good read. It’s a mystery/thriller novel, and it fulfills the conventions and expectations. I would be surprised if this novel is studied outside of a marketing class, but it’s a fun, summer read.

The novel follows the basic outline of a mystery: meet characters, murder presented, suspects introduced, fake out, fake out, wrong turn, sad moment, character figures it out, reader figures out murder(if you haven’t been trying), murderer arrested.

And I love the characters, though I’m not sure if that’s because I hear the actors voices.

Because Heat Wave is a pretty fantastic marketing ploy to get people to spend more money on the shows. You see, Richard Castle is the lead character of ABC’s television show Castle. And it’s a pretty successful one as far as I can tell.

Richard Castle follows around Kate Beckett as inspiration for the title character of this books, Nikki Heat. Fans of the show now have 2 volumes in the series, both supposedly written over the summer breaks in the show.

It’s a great marketing ploy and makes for an entertaining read. And if the characters feel like they’re missing something, check out the show. It’s even better than the book!

Kim Boekbinder’s Kickstarter Tour

I’ve written about Kim Boekbinder and her funky music before And it still makes me smile and dance when it comes on in my car.
So imagine my excitement when she posted that she’s going to tour! And she’s stopping by Los Angeles, which I hate driving to, but I really would love to see her live.

But that might not happen. Because she’s pre-selling her tour. Which means that she has to have the initial amount through Kickstarter for each stop before she’ll actually put in the effort to find a venue. And there’s only 5 days left before the LA tour won’t happen, with most of the amount remaining.

So if you’re in the LA area, and you’re like me and interested in new music and like being part of something new, go buy a ticket! They’re only $10! And she has pretty cool merch that you can pre-order as part of your support for her innovative tour!

Driving in Southern California

Driving during sunsetI drive forever to get to work. Ok, so that may be an exaggeration, but I definitely drive around 80 miles round-trip. Everyday. And because I work on location after school, I miss morning traffic completely and the worst of the afternoon rush. But still, it’s about 2 hours each day, unless the traffic gods are particularly spiteful or gracious.

The traffic becomes more erratic during the summer. I blame the tourists, since my route overlaps the fastest way to travel the 6 hour(ish) drive from Las Vegas, NV to the Pacific Ocean.

While traffic does steal a part of my soul, and there are more beautiful places to drive, I find the time peaceful. I cannot control the number of cars on the road, or the driving style/ability of others behind the wheel, so I decided to respond with patience to the road conditions. (Usually, though I have been known to yell at other drivers in my car to release my displeasure with their actions.) And driving in the summer always reminds me of the road/camping trips my family took when I was growing up. And though I don’t get to end up someplace beautiful like the Grand Canyon, or Zion, or Yellowstone, or Yosemite, or Sequoia, or Jackson Hole, I vicariously live through my imaginings of the adventures my fellow travelers are experiencing.  And I play the pastime of all road trips – the license plate game. Continue reading Driving in Southern California