political activism

Occupy Greensboro protest and random updates

Howdy.

I’m taking my lunch to work and I am going to find a few more corners to cut in order to save up for a trip to here: http://www.artparadiseinportugal.com/ with Sandy next year. It will be our 25th wedding anniversary year. Leighanna Light is going to teach a class there and I just loved the one day class I had with her a couple of years ago. This prospect has picked up my spirits considerably.

Susanne had another pulp painting class in her back yard a few weeks ago and I really, really loved doing it. I’d like to work with this some more after my hands get better. I miss making paper. It is doable as long as somebody else is schlepping around the heavy water vats and pulp buckets, but obviously I don’t have a servant at home.

It’s funny but although I miss making paper, I don’t really miss making books that much. Maybe I just needed a break. I have plenty of blank books for the gallery right now, so I’ve switched all over to weaving scarves and stitching occasionally on my magic cloth, which has magically transformed into a healing cloth. My back studio almost feels like a meditation room when I am not playing music or podcasts. I lose track of time so it is good to play This American Life episodes since I know that an hour has passed. I weave for 1-2 hours before I need to take a break for my hands and back. Weaving is not so hard, but preparing the warp and tying it on the loom is, so as much as I look forward to the next color combination, I also wish that I had a weaving elf to do that part for me. Surgery on my left hand is scheduled for December 23. This way I only have to take one sick day from work, since I have the week off after Christmas anyway.

Sandy and I marched as two of the 99% last Saturday in downtown Greensboro, and that made me cheer up more as well. It was a very family-friendly event with a diverse crowd. The organizers of Occupy Greensboro did a fantastic job, and they are still working their butts off planning more educational events and protests from their encampment downtown next to Festival Park.

For a video showing the entire “parade” of marchers, see this. If you had any stereotypical images of the protesters, it will surprise you:

Definitely not a bunch of homeless hippies or elitist radical hipsters or old-school Democrats. Certainly no Republicans, except for a few trying to ambush people with economic questions on video, and except for one guy dressed as Gumby carrying a sign that said “Thank God for the Rhino Times.” (How sad is that.) I wish that I had a demographic breakdown of this crowd. My guess is that many of us are unaffiliated or thinking about going that route. There were libertarians and socialists and anarchists there, but there were plenty of people who were not extremists and were simply disgusted with the way corporate money influences every aspect of our political system.

To solve a problem, first you have to admit that there is a problem. Then you bring awareness to those around you about the problem. I don’t expect the Occupy Movement to solve our vast economic problems, but I’m thrilled that they are waking people up out of their apathy to voice their grievances and demand some action from our so-called leaders. That is the value that this movement brings. The protesters don’t have to have answers. We elect people and pay them to come up with the answers, and they aren’t doing their jobs.

In conclusion, my butterbeans are producing heavily and are very delicious cooked with a few pieces of bacon.

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