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Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Consumer Responsibility

Today's topic of discussion (ok, really thoughts, because that's all a discussion with one's self is...) is consumerism and responsible shopping.  Husband and I have been working to move all of our spending towards smaller and independently owned retail souces of all kinds.  Some people would disagree that this is a form of direct action, however I think it is a best bet. 

If companies with socially irresponsible (read: destructive) practices are behaving so badly to ignite growth of profit, the best thing is to reprimand them by boycott.  Their pockets seem to be their only vulnerability- I for one am more than happy to hit them there. Writing to inform them of such would strengthen the action, but I have yet to let any company know that they have lost my business.  Perhaps this weekend would be a good time to tackle a project like that.

It seems more practical and supportive on a local community level to make sure that the money we spend our days working for is spent on the salaries of other people who are working hard.  Not those that are building a fortune on the backs of those they oppress.  I don't want to pay rich people to treat their employees and the planet the way they do!  It is unacceptable and uncivilized to behave as such. 

Don't get me wrong!  Not everyone can afford to shop exclusively on Main Street. I understand that there are people out there supporting a family of 6 on minimum wage- budgets that only allot $3 a day for all those people to eat!  But it seems the honorable thing to do given the education and resources.  Making sacrifices is something we talk about a lot in this country- I am delighted to have the privilege of sacrificing more in cost now to help a local shop that has fair business practices.  In fact, it seems an appropritate responsibility considering how outrageously lucky I am to live in this country, be in a position where I am no longer literally crying over the bills every month and have the education to understand the oppressive support structure of our economy.

There are lots of resources out there on how to shop more responsibly.  I have been using the latest publication of the Better World Shopping Guide to assist me in some decision making.  Especially when it comes to decisions where there is a product that I cannot obtain independently.  For instance, gasoline.  There is no good place to buy fossil fuels- they are horrible and a lot of the companies that distribute them are even worse.  However, Sunoco corporation acknowledges global warming and is the only fuel company that has signed on in formal support of CERES to help build a better future.  Hess is the second best place to purchase gas. 

I would really love to know if anyone else is attempting this practice?  What have you found?  What works and what doesn't?  Give me your feedback!  I will eat it all up regardless of your POV. 

Monday, October 29, 2012

dispatches from down north

Expanding and contracting, the heartbeat throbbing throughout the Universe. Oughtn't that happen separately? Mustn't an expansion occur for a contraction to follow? It seems as logic, yet always feels simultaneous. Neither one happening in the actual absence of the other. There is no moment of separation, can be no such thing amongst eternal interweaving and spinning of infinite pattern.

Broken promises litter the stage along with endless hope and the ever-present confetti of possibility. Luckily, I really, really love confetti. That makes me smile, which is always a good thing. Smiling is the way that love travels. One of many, many ways. But it happens to be my favorite.
During those infamous college years, I learned that these beautiful little natural chemicals called 'endorphins' are released every single time I smile. So why not smile more? Everything is different because of those lucky number seventeen muscles. How else can a person get through the day?

Life is all questions and no answers and it occurs now that is because the answers are always malleable when it comes to the future. There are answers, but most are made up and all are subject to change. This is the mystery of existence.

Life can still be a fairy tale.
Happy Ending and all.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Life is Change

I can't even read my last post here... Whatever was written at that time feels floaty and drifted towards the edge of daily consciousness. All my focus consumed is by the lack of forward-momentum, defined by the hamster wheel of modern society but filled with the dreams of artists. The waving cycle of being consumed by the ideas of the corporate model and filled back up with the ideas of favorite thoughts can be a complete experience. It feels like trying to move forward quickly through the water-like air of a dreams, getting wherever you are going- seemed so clear a second ago- as fast as you can which is so obviously so far from sufficient. Then one night, you throw a punch. YOU THROW THE WHOLE PUNCH! You hand moves through regular air with the force of your strength and you make contact!... and... absolutely... nothing... happens... after that. Searching for the breakthrough, moving toward it, is imaginably comparable to deliberately hunting a willow-the-wisp. It is deliberately chasing elusive possibilities with the glimmer of reward shining through the woods. High risk, high reward. But you can always get lost. And so many do.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

mission underway

Ta-daaaa!!! A date is set for the premiere of Sideshow Showcase! April 7, a Saturday, the day after the full moon for the month. EXCITEMENT!

Delaying until April will give me the time I need to distribute 500 invitations, complete with waiver, a-la burn. I want it to be a 'private' event to limit liability and legal constraints around closing down by 1a- pah! I am also establishing an LLC, getting lots of awesome, FREE help from the NH Small Business Development Center, free *legal* assistance from their contact. Extra time is also good to network the crap out of myself to generate some gravity around this thing and organize every last detail imaginable.

It is intended as a fundraising platform for a 3 day event (AraXarA!- the embodiment of that which becomes you- yeah :D) in June that Jason and I are organizing with lots of help from some committed friends. It isn't a Burning Man sanctioned regional, but that is the feel we are going for- 10 Principals and all.

I will consider myself sooooo lucky if we get 75-100 people for ShowShow and even more so if we successfully raise any amount of money to go to land rental, portos and everything else that goes with organizing a multi-day event. Which, btw, I have never before attempted. EEK!

Super lucky to have a friend who wants to come visit and sell her unusual wares for the ShowShow event all the way from Richmond, VA. And just talking about this project has already connected me with new people at work (whoa! risk central!! but it's cool ;) and with community resources of which I was previously unaware. YAY! My own momentum is pushing me forward and I am *excited*!

Especially about the shrunken heads. It's not even intended to be a solely creepy event, but I cannot get over these shrunken heads in corked bottles. Too cool! I have some artists- REALLY TALENTED ONES!- who want to display their stuff, my good friend from Richmond will bring awesome wares and skills, I know, I have several hoopers who would like to perform and help set-up, Husband wants to juggle and there may be another guy from work who is willing to juggle fire pins. I haven't found anyone besides myself who practices fire poi up here, but I am thrilled to fulfill the role alone. WHEEE!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

steampunk and circus rule my world

I have been practicing circus arts only since about 2006. I LOVE IT! And not just for the fashion, which is not necessarily steampunk, but you better believe mine will be. After I left Richmond, my practice habits have declined as I am not immersed in a community that provides the structure and support for practice anywhere, anytime. I have not had very much success integrating into, or even finding, the circus arts community up here. A fish out of water so to speak. A fish who spends a lot more time looking at awesome clothes and shoes online. Online browsing somehow does not sufficiently substitute.

The time has come my friends, for me to build my own art scene.

I have been building up to this for quite some time- slowed by obstacles in my head that appear to be reflected in reality. No mind- A PLAN IS UNDERWAY!!! Who cares that I don't have any of the awesome connections and roots that would make creating a plan like this so easy in the past. Who cares that I have no idea where to find a venue? Who cares if I end up blowing a lot of time and money on food and alcohol when no one shows up? I am a girl who is up for a challenge. No reason to be beaten by the unknown just because it is a giant, and potentially expensive, pain in the ass.

I think I am just going to go explore art galleries and yoga studios in Manchester until I can persuade someone that letting me host artists and musicians other than their own to invite the public to stay up late drinking and dancing is a good idea. WHY NOT?!

I will get a fire permit and an awesome, but firesafe costume, and spin outside the main entrance. I am certain I know at least two DJs who would be willing to play. We will feature the sale-able work of unknown local artists. Yeah, there will be a fee ($35??) to get in the door, but who would mind knowing that food and drink are on the house once you come in.

How will I feed all these people you ask? GRILLED CHEESE! Available as regular, vegan, gluten free, herbed or with tomato- maybe even avocado. Lots of butter/buttery substitute. THE POSSIBILITIES ARE ENDLESS! Nom.

Please read this post and then continually harass me for more information about how this project is going. I keep wanting to put the fire out because it is burning my ass!