Sunday, June 29, 2014

humans, part 6.0

We are all amusing ourselves
And running scared from everything
It seems Time is what you fear most
Yet there is more of it than anything
With all this time to waste
And all these photo opportunities,
You plan to do it all in the final years that may never come
Not to sound morbid but real
Death is a part of life as much as life is
The best years are all the years not spent crying
Maybe not succeeding but trying
To stay on top, at least the top of the bottom
Those old memories wear out like shoes
And I am sure you heard the news
Nobody cares for a recluse
These humans are a social lot
It's hard to know exactly what they understand
exactly what is in that head of theirs

Saturday, June 28, 2014

“The most important things are the hardest to say. They are the things you get ashamed of, because words diminish them — words shrink things that seemed limitless when they were in your head to no more than living size when they’re brought out. But it’s more than that, isn’t it? The most important things lie too close to wherever your secret heart is buried, like landmarks to a treasure your enemies would love to steal away. And you may make revelations that cost you dearly only to have people look at you in a funny way, not understanding what you’ve said at all, or why you thought it was so important that you almost cried while you were saying it.  That’s the worst, I think. When the secret stays locked within not for want of a teller but for want of an understanding ear.” 

~Stephen King (Different Seasons

Thursday, June 26, 2014

With Summer almost here, things are heating up like wildfire
You can hear them talking about manning the barricades or how this will be bigger than Clayquot
It makes you wonder why everyone decided to jump on this wagon but it always happens that way
A flint, a catalyst, a spark, and like they said, it won't be televised, only plagiarised

Our children and their children will be the reason for our defiance, no violence, just trying to change the way things are, which is to say that things are fucked up
I don't want to get into it but I always do, like 42, it is the answer to all that could be asked
Only sociopaths do politics, the reason for their treason is for the shine of the gold and the power to decide or bribe whoever needs to be bribed

And we all shine on

Sunday, June 22, 2014

"Bob Dylan and Leonard Cohen and Patti Smith, all dark, all romantic. When I say “romantic,” I mean a sensibility that sees everything, and has to express everything, and still doesn’t know what the fuck it is, it hurts that bad."
                            -Jeff Buckley

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Rise of the Neo-Liberal containment state in Canada... (excerpt from Aiyanas Ormond)

"Far from being a sinister machination of the “Harper agenda,” the neoliberal containment state enjoys a consensus across the ruling class and between electoral parties. No mainstream political party is putting forward a coherent alternative vision for managing monopoly capitalism. The appeals to a softer gentler capitalism coming from the labour bureaucracy and the ‘left’ wing of the NDP have no coherent economic program attached to them. The reality is that the strengthening of the police/incarceration containment state is intimately tied to the social consensus of the bourgeoisie about how to manage capitalism and accumulation in this historical period. The neoliberal containment state is a necessary corollary of the other components of the neoliberal project in Canada:
i. Trade liberalization beginning with the Canada-US Free Trade Agreement and NAFTA.
ii. Privatization of former state enterprises and public services.
iii. De-funding of redistributive social programs under the cover of austerity and debt reduction.
iv. Weakening and dismantling of regulatory frameworks including environmental and labour regulations.
v. Diminishing the use function of social programs for working class communities and increasing their control function.
It is important to understand the institutions and instruments of this containment state, their connections to the economics of neoliberalism, and their functionality for the Canadian colonial capitalist project as we build movements of struggle, resistance and revolution...."
via the Mainlander. Aiyanas Ormond.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Sorry, Oliver Stone.

Dear Vancouver Biennale,
First off, let me congratulate you on your success in bringing Oliver Stone to Vancouver, it must have seemed impossible. Mr. Stone is a great man and for him to come to our fair city and share his thoughts on American history, is a benefit for all who attended the "Untold History of the United States" documentary series screening this evening at the Vogue.
I was honestly looking forward to the event, as Oliver Stone actually changed my young life, when I was 14 and saw "Platoon". That film changed how I viewed war as a youth, making me see the filth and the violence of it, rather than the glory and honour that the establishment wanted me to see.
I grew up loving his films, with their gritty truth and sometimes controversial portrayals of historical events, JFK, Born on the Fourth of July, W., Commandante among others. The man is a Vietnam veteran for Christ sake. 
Let me try to get closer to the point...

The show was the most amateur, country fair presentation that I have ever seen. It was so bad, the audience, who was extremely gracious, in my opinion, especially for this city, began to laugh aloud and eventually people were beginning to get angry.
It was ridiculous, you don't treat a man of such stature with that sort of small-towny arrogance that many people in the arts community in this city, seem to display. 

The announcer dude, 'Red Pants', came out and shielded his eyes from the lights, with his program. Super pro. He then went on and on and on about the Biennale and the blah blah blah... For like 15 minutes! As if the (full house) audience was here to listen to this clown. 

I appreciate that the VB brought Stone to the city but what was up with presenting Mr. Stone with a 'Lifetime Achievement Award'? This man's films have been nominated for THIRTY ONE ACADEMY AWARDS. I'm sure the Vancouver Biennale will be shoving the Oscars out of the way in the award case. 

And Red Pants kept coming on to the stage, including taking video of Oliver Stone. Seriously? Could he be more tactless? And I won't mention him yelling, "technicians!", when the  Biennale logo didn't flash across the screen. 

And speaking of the screen, the lighting was such that the participants on the stage were blinded and their shadows fell upon the screen behind them. Pretty dismal. When the film was introduced and it was time to play it, the screen became a computer menu and it stayed on that for awhile. Many jeers and laughter. Oliver Stone in the audience.Finally, the show starts and IT IS THE WRONG EPISODE.

It continues to play for 5 or 10 minutes and then it shuts off and returns to the computer menu again. Red Pants gets up on the stage yet again and apologises for the technical difficulties. It was also at this moment that they realise the Biennale flags have been casting huge shadows on the screen. People emerge from backstage and remove the flags. Red Pants helps. One of them is a bit of a struggle. They finally get it off stage. At this point, the whole scene is like a Laurel And Hardy or Buster Keaton thing.

The one saving grace was Tony Pantages, who moderated, or at least tried to moderate the introduction and the Q and A afterwards. Although, it was difficult for him because after the show, he had everything from  rambling idiots who asked 7 questions, to 9/11 conspiracy theorists. I must ask why you had no moderators in the crowd, with the microphones. This is Oliver Stone, for Christ sake.
Tony Pantages was left to deal with these whack jobs by himself. And luckily, Oliver Stone is a genius and danced circles around these local yokels. 

Vancouver audiences are notorious twats. We go out to many shows, including many at the Vogue and we constantly withstand flashes and screens and talking and all other kinds of asshole behaviour that Vancouverites like to engage in when they are not busy rioting over hockey games. We are all trying to shed that fur trading post mentality but it is hard to teach an old dog new tricks. Almost every time I go to a show, I end up yelling at someone or have my general experience hampered because there are a handful of halfwits ruining it for everyone else and nobody stopping them. In many establishments I have been to in other cities, they throw your ass out for acting like that but not here, for some reason. Again, I refer to fur and possibly the Gold Rush.

Basically, the entire experience this evening felt as though it was not rehearsed for one second. Think about it, the building was probably chock-a-block with film people, theatre people, cinephiles and Red Pants is on the stage yelling, "technicians!" at people who are the brothers and sisters of me and many in the audience. I mentioned lighting, well I am in the lighting department. I have been for years. I would have volunteered for free to be a part of anything Oliver Stone would have been part of and it sure wouldn't have looked like that. I would wash Oliver Stone's car. I think I have made my point. 

The feeling I got from the whole experience was that it was embarrassing. For me and for my city.