This blog is on vacation! No time to write, all my extra time is spent in the garden or at dinner parties. And soon some traveling. Be back soon.
All comments will be turned off for a couple of weeks. I can still be contacted at the page “yo!”
Photo courtesy of Liese-Lotta
Valedictorian Speaks Out Against Schooling in Graduation Speech
(h/t Sign of the Times)
The following speech was delivered by top of the class student Erica Goldson during the graduation ceremony at Coxsackie-Athens High School on June 25, 2010
I am now accomplishing that goal. I am graduating. I should look at this as a positive experience, especially being at the top of my class. However, in retrospect, I cannot say that I am any more intelligent than my peers. I can attest that I am only the best at doing what I am told and working the system. Yet, here I stand, and I am supposed to be proud that I have completed this period of indoctrination. I will leave in the fall to go on to the next phase expected of me, in order to receive a paper document that certifies that I am capable of work. But I contest that I am a human being, a thinker, an adventurer – not a worker. A worker is someone who is trapped within repetition – a slave of the system set up before him. But now, I have successfully shown that I was the best slave. I did what I was told to the extreme. While others sat in class and doodled to later become great artists, I sat in class to take notes and become a great test-taker. While others would come to class without their homework done because they were reading about an interest of theirs, I never missed an assignment. While others were creating music and writing lyrics, I decided to do extra credit, even though I never needed it. So, I wonder, why did I even want this position? Sure, I earned it, but what will come of it? When I leave educational institutionalism, will I be successful or forever lost? I have no clue about what I want to do with my life; I have no interests because I saw every subject of study as work, and I excelled at every subject just for the purpose of excelling, not learning. And quite frankly, now I’m scared.
Read the whole speech here.
The Ex – State of Shock (90s song by Anarcho-Dutch group)
Two days ago marked the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall.
I just happened to have a few pen pals in Berlin when the Wall came down. They sent me bits of the broken wall as mementos. Pieces with graffiti were more desirable so some entrepreneurs decided to start spray painting parts of clean walls and then breaking off chunks so that they could be sold internationally for a higher price. Strange. I bet Eduardo Galeano could re-write this paragraph and make it profound.
I have photos somewhere of the Wall being torn down sent to me by a pen pal.Â I should find and post them.
East Berlin is now gentrified. The modern architecture lovers were turned on by all that boxy Soviet construction. Funny world we live in.
In Los Angeles, we don’t need walls. We have freeways, bridges and a big concrete river to keep us apart.
Found the photos! Please click to see a much larger image.
My Berliner pen pal who I met once when he visited Los Angeles. I don’t remember his name.
Random bits of news that caught my interest today:
“Do these mysterious stones mark the site of the Garden of Eden?” asks Britain’s Daily Mail. I thought it was an odd choice to present this discovery of an early human sacred site in such a definitive biblical way.Â A Kurdish shepherd uncovers Gobleki Temple, a Turkish Stonehenge.
From the Wall Street Journal: Mexican gardeners not losing as much work as their paisa cousins in construction and other trades. Wait until water rationing goes into effect. Many Immigrants Still Till the Land of Opportunity.
Remember the Orange Revolution? Unrest grows in the Ukraine, the economy is on the verge of collpase. Our economy is too but folks here can’t be bothered, they’re too busy watching TMZ. Unrest in Ukraine appears on the rise.
Everybody’s been linking to this video but it really is hilarious. Speaking of hilarious, I realized today I’m the only person I know who thinks Flight of the Conchords isn’t all the humorous. I don’t get it…
Louis CK on Conan O’Brien
Tomorrow and Wednesday, the greatest living Gitano Flamenco family, Los Farruco will be performing right here in Los Angeles. They are sure to bring the house down. See here for more details and info on half price tickets.