11:23 PM Comment0 Comments

Rise Against, you all know them. Heavy sound, heavy lyrics. Anti-war. Anti-Bush. Genre, Hardcore, Punk Rock, Something Something. Etcetera. Etcetera. You've all heard Hero of War. And here's one of my favourites. Collapse.

10:25 PM Comment0 Comments

By this time, in two years, will our planet be destroyed? The Maya never really stated for or against. Their mythology would indicate some sort of peril. With the "galactic alignment" mirroring the original "galactic alignment" that occurred at the beginning of days. Their knowledge of astronomy was and remains to be staggering in some cases rivaling our own up to present day. But then again, they never actually indicated that the lords of the underworld would reign their terror on the world, they just indicated that the calendar cycle would end and begin anew. Some theorize that with the growth in popularity of the myth, someone with the actual power to carry out a world-ending deed and the will to destroy the planet will make it happen. A self-fulfilling prophecy. So what should we do. Hope for the best, and continue the calendar.

Mayan Calendar Portal (Interactive Web-based Mayan Calendar)

Movement Musician of the Week: Shad "I Heard You Had A Voice Like An Angel"

11:19 PM Comment0 Comments

The sub-atomic particles that we are built from will never die
They will not dissipate,
They will not dissolve,
They will not disappear.
Their energy is infinite.
It will last forever.
Billions of years from now,
The energy that once maybe up the beauty of human existence,
The planet Earth,
The Sol System,
The Milky Way Galaxy,
And the once tangible and explorable universe,
Will reach into the depths of space never to form that beauty again.
On this scale our existence seems feeble,
In the grand scheme of time and space.
So why not expand our existence,
Reach for the stars while we can,
Use our remaining resources to make our presence known,
And teach other life that they too must preserve their existence?
Or we can burn out,
Expend our resources without developing the alternatives,
And no species human or otherwise,
Will ever reach from Earth into the final frontier.
Is Earth doomed to failure?
Or merely meekness?
It is human desire to be bigger, better and stronger,
And exploration is second nature.
We have time, but not a lot,
And it is a noble goal, to preserve and propagate.
If we are important, should we not save ourselves,
and ultimately prosper?

Movement Musician of the Week: Shad "Get Up"

9:33 AM Comment0 Comments

This weeks movement musician, as you may have already realized from my previous post, is Shad. Born in Kenya, of Rwandan parents Shad is a hip hop artist from London, Ontario. His beats are catchy, his lyrics intense and his style hilarious. He's a 30-something year old part-time Liberal Arts student, and lives in his mothers basement. In his most recent album "The Old Prince" he parodies the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air in an attempt to portray his unsuccessful Quest for Glory in the hip hop world. Through his lyrics Shad represents modern black activism and attempts to break down youth stereotypes. He is yet another alternative hip hop musician who condemns the "gangster" rap scene and the corporatism of music.

"The Old Prince Still Lives At Home"
PS This is my 50th Post Hurrah!

1:06 AM Comment0 Comments

Its 1 am, the party has died down, some people are sleeping others are on an adventure to Subway™. I am sitting in someone's bedroom writing this blog. I have proven myself once again to be a deserted diviner. I was unable to make disciples of the drunk. Though I have forged new connections. The Party Prophet. The Deserted Diviner. The Lame Leader. I'll have my time.

Movement Musician of the Week: Shad "Brother (Watching)"

8:33 PM Comment0 Comments

Its a Thursday evening. I had an exam today, one of the few people of my age to have exams before the holidays. Its relieving though, partly because the exam was easier then any exam/test/quiz I've ever taken (and I'm not particularly good at data management in the first place), and partly because I tend to forget everything I've learned all semester over the holidays, making the mad scramble to study that much more stressful. It makes me wish more of my classes had pre-holiday exams. Now I can focus on matters more important, like, essays... Great, an essay on peak oil. Sure I could write infinitely on the subject of peak oil, but that's just the problem, I can't make a short concise argument about it. Its just such a broad subject with too many ifs. But I'm almost done, after that I can focus on stuff, making solstice (Christmas) gifts, piano-ing, mandolin-ing, paint-ing (in theory), blog-ing, cartoon-ing... list too long, does not compute.

Today is the Islamic New Year, Republic Day in Niger, State of Qatar National Day and New Jersey Day(if anyone cares :P)

Movement Musician of the Week: Johnny Clegg & Savuka "I Call Your Name"

10:35 PM Comment0 Comments

Fifty years from now they'll look back and call this the Age of Stupid. Looking at all us consumers and followers. We don't know where our food comes from. We don't know the impacts of our actions on the world. And most importantly we don't realize we can make a difference. Even in the Age of Stupid we are the Architects of the Future, how will we build the future? Hopefully in a way that our descendants won't label us stupid.

Movies: Age of Stupid, Food Inc. Check them out.

Movement Musician of the Week: Johnny Clegg & Savuka "One (Hu)' Man One Vote"
PS its Reconciliation Day in South Africa

5:39 PM Comment1 Comments

Combating climate change is impossible.
Ending our dependence on oil is impossible.
Stopping racism through mutual understanding is impossible.
Ending and preventing war, is impossible.
Giving everyone equal opportunity is impossible.
Peace and happiness, is impossible.

No, I'll tell you what's impossible.

Sailing to Neptune in a Sailboat made of Meringue.

Movement Musician of the Week: Johnny Clegg and Savuka "Human Rainbow"

9:24 PM Comment0 Comments

It'd be swell if some abercrombie scientist would bring back the 30s. Those cool cats would dig the way we live. What with the economy all wet. No one's got any bacon but those crumb grifters selling cadillacs and hooch. We don't even have enough tin to fill up the tin can. I'm just a joe. I'm beat, don't got a single five spot or sawbuck to my name. Or even a snazzy horn like all my pals. But all a twit like me really needs is a sweet broad to bumpgums with, a canary singing music into my tin ears.

Swell Musician of the Week (For all you cats and alligators): Johnny Clegg and Savuka "Scatterlings of Africa" (Excuse my French)

2:25 PM Comment0 Comments

This weeks movement musician is Johnny Clegg and Savuka. Johnny Clegg and Savuka was a South African band active during the 80s. A band of mixed European and Zulu ethnicity they fought against racism in South Africa and the apartheid which separated whites and blacks. During the apartheid they were even at risk of being prosecuted for their interracial band. Their unique sound was influenced by Jazz, Rock, African and even Celtic music. In songs such as Asimbonanga, they incorporated English and Zulu lyrics to get their multicultural and political message across. Causes they fought for included, universal suffrage, multiculturalism, desegregation and liberating Nelson Mandela from prison. This weeks movement musician is fitting because this coming Wednesday is Reconciliation Day in South Africa. This is a day celebrating the end of the apartheid and encouraging forgiveness and national unity between the different ethnic groups that make up South Africa. Because of activists like Johnny Clegg and Savuka, South Africa is a freer and arguably more united country today.

Asimbonanga (We have not seen him) is a song protesting Nelson Mandela's imprisonment on Robbin Island.

3:49 PM Comment0 Comments

They call us consumers.
But why?
We are people.
We are human.
We have thoughts and emotions,
Words to speak and feelings to act on.
We hold beliefs, and ideals,
loves, hates,
wants and needs.
So, let's call that a person,
Sounds good right?
Vague, but good.
So why do they call us consumers?
We are numbers to them,
We are money,
Living ads and banners,
Branding perfected.
So what's better?
Or are they just different,
Is happiness freedom?
Is truth freedom?
Does freedom matter?
I'm a person,
And at times a consumer.
They control my mind in one way or another,
But aren't I still free?
How does one free their mind?
Is it worth the sacrifice?
Is it truly fulfilling?
Would I still be a puppet?

Movement Musician of the Week: Rage Against the Machine "Bullet in Your Head"

11:17 AM Comment0 Comments

Big oil has finally done it. Through lies and smear campaigns they've cast enough doubt over man-made climate change to send the quasi-medieval Saudi Arabia into Copenhagen screaming. This leaves oil-drenched nations everywhere breathing a sigh of relief that they don't have to put their reputation on the line by blocking climate talks, the Arabs are taking the bullet. What is our responsibility as citizens of the planet? With a new climate deal being negotiated this week it is important that we all do our part.
Here's some important links:
Seal the Deal: Petition for Fair Climate Talks (Earth Mosaic)
Hopenhagen (Messages of Hope)
Show Your Vote (Have your say at Copenhagen)
Official COP15 Website (For more information and neat links)

10:04 PM Comment0 Comments

The Deserted Diviner speaks his daily news, in hopes that excited ears will heed his words. He knows however, that no one hears his discordant drivel. His audience is deaf dumb and blind to his doctrine, drowned out by the myriad voices of capital. Focused solely on the technological teats before them, devouring their propaganda potions. How can he wake them from their apathy? Better yet, should he? He long ago chose the song of truth and beauty, knowing full well the horror and despair that played the atrocious accompaniment, but his foolish followers reached out for the hypnotic, to avoid the pain. He doubts himself, why not take the drug, with its false felicity? He would not know the difference. He can't give in though, for verity can bring about vivacity, and the other course, however simple, is ignoble. The Deserted Diviner waits on a world trapped in a trance.

4:09 PM Comment0 Comments

New Bullet!

New Header!

And New Banner!

1:35 PM Comment0 Comments

You're probably familiar with Rage Against the Machine. You've heard Killing in the Name, you've heard Bombtrack. You're familiar with their unconventional sound and their politically motivated lyrics. RAtM wrote their music in the turbulent 90s. Through Zack de la Rocha and his lyrics against police brutality, war, torture and neo-liberal government, RAtM carved out a niche in the worldwide music scene. Through songs like "People of the Sun" (featuring Tom Morello playing his guitar by rubbing an Allan key against the G string) RAtM supports the National Zapatista Liberation Army (EZLN) in Mexico, a leftist anarchist guerrilla group dedicated to autonomy of the indigenous peoples of Oaxaca. True movement musicians they stuck to their mores and became famous, or in some circles infamous, for the message they preached to the youth of the world. Unfortunately they broke up in 2000 at the beginning of one of the most controversial American regimes to date, but in 2007 they got back together to see off George W. Bush. Is new music on the horizon? Sources vary. So here's to the RAtM, the renegades, the EZLN, the Mexica and the Maya.

Movement Musician of the Week: Rage Against the Machine "People of the Sun"

4:21 PM Comment0 Comments

Have you ever been on a blog where there are just Enormous blocks of boring text and you wonder why anyone would ever want to take the time to read it? Well, I went to the doctor's today, and I got some bad news. I have... EBOUTS Enormous Blocks of Uninteresting Text Syndrome. Basically, it means I chronically write too much in my blogs, negatives symptoms include boring readers, wasting time, joint pain (in fingers) and sore eyes. The doctor says its not fatal and I could continue on with it, but it may also be curable. Thanks for your continued support.

8:46 PM Comment0 Comments

What does one blog about when he's already written 4 blogs in one weekend? Well this one is going to be short, and concise. For all those dedicated readers (none literally). So for all those, me, I've done a slight layout change to make the blog more easily readable and accessible. I took out the background picture, as it wasn't doing much for the blog anyway, and I changed the background colour slightly to be more complimentary with the font colour. This way I can imagine I might get dedicated readers, because their eyes won't hurt just looking at the giant blocks of text my blog normally boasts. At some point I might design my own header and title pictures to replace the current colorful swirls but for the time being I'm going to stick with them as they are attractive and safe. I wish I had some html skill, because then I could figure out a way to center everything on the screen all Web 2.0 style which would be wicked. Anyway that's about it. The Party Prophet has nothing important to say, well less important than usual.

You know who the Movement Musician is, look 'em up if you're interested. ;P

And the world seems to be fresh out of rebels today, new batch in tomorrow.

1:29 PM Comment2 Comments

I'm starting to think that sex and relationships don't go together. It seems to me that in the grand majority of cases sex blinds people to true emotion and therefore true love. How often do sexual expectations lead to break-ups and divorces? Its crazy. I suppose at some point sex is important in procreation and to satisfy innate human desire, but it seems in this society many place sex and physical connection on this pedestal and forget about the importance of human emotional connection.

That said, there is a time and place in everyone's life and relationships to enjoy the carnal pleasures of sex, but in many cases (especially in youth) it is not out of desire to connect but out of need to fulfill the social imperative instilled by the media. Sex is a status symbol. TV and movies are brimming with sexual reference and innuendo and explicit scenes of sexuality are becoming the norm. Following the mark of shows such as "Two and a Half Men", not a single episode in any show geared towards a teen-adult audience will pass without dedicating at least one sexual reference, and sex is rarely shown in a negative light.

Even childrens' shows are becoming increasingly sexual in nature. There have always been underlying innuendos, which may or may not be intentional, that adult viewers would pick up on, but now childrens' television is becoming increasingly dependent on crushes and vanity. There are the pretty girls that all the kids drool over and there are the nerds who have crushes on them (Ex. Tim Turner and Trixie Tang in Fairly Oddparents). It is not long before the kids watching these shows choose to watch other more mature Television program behind their parents back. It was The Simpsons and That 70s Show a couple years ago, now kids will be watching Family Guy and Two and a Half Men.

So what's the point behind all this? Is it a problem? Maybe for those who cannot recognize the difference between physical and emotional connection and understand wherein the importance of both lie. Maybe we're just headed towards a more openly sexual society. Maybe the second wave of the sexual revolution is upon us. In time we may break down our monogamist society into something that mirrors Aldous Huxley's novel Brave New World. Where marriage and family are non-existent and children take part in simulated erotic play from a young age. Whatever the case is, it seems our society is yet again changing in its views of sexuality. The verdict is sex sells, and the networks are supplying it.

Movement Musician of the Week: The Flobots "Same Thing"

Rebel of the Day (Numero Dos-ish): Rwanda, for moving past its history of human rights abuses and being international recognized for this as it joins the Commonwealth of Nations.

11:38 PM Comment0 Comments

This is an airplane vector I just made in Adobe Illustrator CS2. I'm satisfied with the outcome.

And this is a poem I just decided to write in order to describe the pains of earworms to you. Don't worry they aren't contagious, unless I sing, and I try to avoid that, for everyone else sake.

Dearest Earworm,
Please leave my head,
Though your beat is catchy,
And your lyrics snazzy,
You drive me crazy.
Your rhythm crumbles,
Under the weight of anger,
Sounds of silken cloth,
Turned to old rough hands,
Irritating broken notes.
Off key,
Out of tune,
Forgotten lyrics.
What will make my earworm leave?
Only if another makes its home,
Inside my head.

Out of character? This blog does everything, just the musings of a Party Prophet.

On the note of Free verse poetry...
Movement Musicians of the Week: The Flobots "There's a War Going on For Your Mind" (wicked fan-made typography)

Rebel of the Day (Technically the 3rd today): Matthew Grey Gubler "Gubler's Gallery"
For being a deviant and creepy artist without delving on deviant subjects, and for being an all around nerdy guy.

11:28 AM Comment0 Comments

This December the world will meet in Copenhagen to forge a new climate alliance to succeed the Kyoto protocol which is now 12 years old and set to expire in 2012. While people all over the world rally for a new treaty and leaders have high hopes for carbon-cap policies some people are still shit-disturbers on the issue. The PM of Canada Stephen Harper has stated that there will be no binding treaty reached in Copenhagen next month, reflecting once again his "can't do won't try" attitude on climate change.

His statements coincide with a nation-wide radio campaign by Calgary-based climate change skeptics friendsofscience.org. This organization makes outrageous claims like, climate change is not man-made its caused by the sun, the world has been cooling for the past 10 years and atmospheric levels of CO2 do not correlate to higher worldwide temperatures. The immediate thought is that this organization must be funded by the oil industry unfortunately Canadian law does not require organizations to reveal their sources of funding. When asked about their funding the organization claims that they are a small grass-roots organization supported by small individual donations, but a simple look at the ad campaign reveals the absurdity of that claim.

One source claimed that the 30-second radio spot which runs on 15 stations nation-wide 20-30 times a day for the past month would cost upwards of $65000, an obscenely high value for any grassroots organizations' budget. Other sources claim the organization is funded by big oil companies in Canada and supported by Stephen Harper's fishing buddies, making the PM guilty by association. Whether or not Stephen Harper directly funds or supports the campaign of doubt by friendsofscience.org is not the question however. The question is, does national doubt on the climate change issue help Stephen Harper leading up to Copenhagen on December 7, 2009? He has already stated there will be no climate treaty next month. When Harper finally comes out and says he doesn't believe in climate change and finally confesses his romantic affair with oil interests, will anyone truly be surprised?

World leaders have started to question Canadian leadership on the issue of climate change. Specifically, at a Commonwealth summit it was proposed that Canada be suspended from the Commonwealth because of inaction on climate change. That would put Canada in league with nation's such as Nigeria, South Africa, Zimbabwe and Pakistan who have been suspended for their human rights record at different times throughout history. This is a welcome move to other Commonwealth nations more vulnerable to the effects of climate change, such as Bangladesh, who condemn Canada's deliberate inaction and interference on climate change policy.

Will this become the norm? Will developed nation's who defy climate action be condemned for the impoverished souls they reap through deliberate inaction? It needs to happen to send a message. If Canada joins the ranks of Pakistan and other countries suspended for their corrupt ways it will send a message to the Canadian people and to developed nations world-wide.

So what can be done? When the government, corporations, and radio-stations in this country can't make the moral and ethical decision to tell the truth. People cite freedom of speech, but this is Canada, the government holds the right to censor messages it finds offensive and yet it deliberately ignores the nation-wide smear campaign which is breeding ignorance and teaching lies. Its easy to believe that climate change isn't happening, because the alternative is terrifying, and who's going to question someone with the name friends of science? Its propaganda in its purist form, but because it supposedly comes from a small organization its off the radar. Keep an open mind.

Let us hope that when December 7th comes along the citizens of Canada will demand a binding climate treaty from the governments of the world, but more importantly from their own government. Let us march on parliament hill if Stephen Harper doesn't cease his bad habit of blocking climate talks. Let us protest our government for creating national humiliation when the Commonwealth suspends us from it's ranks. And most importantly let us next time vote for a government that will pledge long-term, effective action on climate change. It is our moral imperative as Canadian citizens and citizens of the World.

Movement Musician of the Week: The Flobots "Fight With Tools" (Live)

Rebel of the Day (Need a Better Title): Shirin Ebadi "Tehran denies seizing Shirin Ebadi's Nobel medal"
She is a Human Rights lawyer who received the Nobel Peace Prize. She's the first Muslim woman to receive a Nobel Prize. In the wake of the last presidential elections she was expelled from the country and her medal was seized from her husbands safety deposit box by the government.

11:42 PM Comment0 Comments

I'm not sure what this blog is going to be about. It's a broadband broadcast of a yet undecided message. Its been a while since I wrote anything worth, anything, literally, I haven't written in over a month. There are things that I've had on my mind, but not had the motivation or time to write about. Corporatism, globalization and neo-liberalism. Whatever that means, I'll pretend I know. All concepts that are an inevitable part of our everyday lives and yet concepts I'm growing to become more and more skeptical about. My reasons are complex, or maybe I'm just brainwashed and therefore can't explain them, but I'd like to call on my moral system. My inspiration and educational materials are as follows, The Corporation, Food Inc., Age of Stupid, The Flobots, FightWithTools.org. I wish I had less corporate means of discovering the evils of corporatism but alas any message must be spread through the corporate controlled mass-media if it is to be heard anywhere. What is corporatism? Our world is filled with it, where corporations (legal persons) are given preferential treatment to REAL persons. What is the justification for this? A buck? Because corporations supposedly work for the benefit of the majority, giving us what we want and raising our standards of living. But without environmental, economic and social justice corporations work worldwide to exploit every resource and every last ounce of manual labour in an effort to turn over a profit. It cannot be denied, the corporation is a psychopath and its goals are ultimately destructive to those around it (roughly 6.6 billion human beings). After watching the three movies listed above, and being socially indoctrinated by the Flobots heavy beats and movement lyrics I find myself thinking long and hard about the food I eat, the things I buy and the media I consume. Branding. Corporate Buyouts. Bankrupcy. Monsanto. DDT. Agent Orange. Abuse of Power. Corporate Lawsuits. Child-labour. Starvation Wages. Exploitation. Extortion. Oil Extraction. Disaster Capitalism. Shock Doctrine. Corporatism. Neo-Liberalism. Globalization. Climate Change. CO2. PPM. How can we free ourselves of brands? In everything we do we are attached to a brand, even in writing this blog I'm attached to the brand of the internet giant Google Inc. In watching TV I'm forced to watch and thinking about advertisements for commercial products, and brands are inadvertantly built in my head, the greatest and most expensive product for corporations, and yet the easiest to sell. I'm a Walkman, you're an iPod and he's a Zune. Again, how can we conquer this? Remove brands from our daily conversation. We can try hard as we might to avoid brands but even those "farm fresh" bovine products have their history in corporations not unlike Monsanto. But even if we are forced to by into a brand we are not forced to talk about it and fuel it. Eleanor Roosevelt said, "Great minds discuss ideas. Average minds discuss events. Small minds discuss people." Well the same applies for brands as people (considering the corporation is a legal person anyway). To talk about brands is to narrow your mind and the world you live in. We need to talk about ideas, learn ALL sides of the story, recognize the bias from all sources. As an online friend said, we need to develop strong roots for support and stability, not flashy flowers and foliage. A tree survives through the winter because of its roots, the foliage dies out, its fleeting. While foliage is necessary for a time and to a certain extent a tree without roots would dry up and die, fall down and rot.

Movement Musician of the Week: The Flobots "Rise" (Forgive the corporate propaganda pre-video)
Rebel of the Day (so cliché): Ban Ki-moon
UN chief urges leaders to 'seal deal' on climate change
For saying a climate deal is in sight when leaders such as Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper are saying there is no deal on the horizon and therefore are taking a can't do won't do strategy, Ban Ki-moon is the rebel of the day.

7:21 PM Comment0 Comments

Its a question I'm asking myself as the seasons are changing. So recently it was summer and now winter is knocking at the door. I want everything to slow down. Soon it will be time for exams, and time to think about my future in school (Yeah that's right I'm a little behind by.. two years). I'll be applying to places, and for scholarships (that is if my grades are any good). I still don't know what I'm going to do. But more and more I feel the pressure to get out of here. It started with my plan to visit my friend in Germany and has ended up with thoughts of leaving home for school (elsewhere in the province or country). It was only a month ago that I would have told people that I'm completely satisfied to stay at home for school. But not only would that get stale with them (parents) always needing to know where I am and when. Home, and dependence has just lost its appeal. Over the summer I made giant leaps. I tried new things in an attempt to define myself, and I'm finding myself satisfied to be who I am where I am and to continue on this journey of discovery and experimentation. This sounds like sex or drugs or something, but whatever, why should I change what I'm writing, to satisfy those who might stumble upon this? No. I'm okay with the way its written, straight from my mind, no stumbling, no edits, no nothing. Here's a poem I wrote "The Autumn Wind":

An Autumn wind blows with grand elation,
Full of new scents and sensation.
It starts off briskly with a chill,
And takes a peak with a thrill,
Damp leaves, and frosty leads,
Fresh gourds and pumpkin seeds
It takes a twist and a turn,
Where to go? It can't discern,
Headed in all ways at once,
Full of energy it runs,
Like a dream, not sure where,
Towards, some goal, without a care.
Moved forward by the coming freeze,
Saddened by the falling trees.
An Autumn wind blows without direction,
It only knows it seeks perfection.

My inspiration for this, is a long story. Well not particularly long, just dull, and long-winded. Its a story that includes 3 out of 4 of the public schools I grew up in and countless places I called home as a child. Its the story of me and every other average suburban teenager who has lived in the same place their entire life. Dressed as a zombie (weird I know) I somehow passed by and relived some of the most defining and changing moments of my life. Exploring under the stars, I discovered the playground of the school I spent 5 dedicated years working and playing. It was the most surreal thing to be back there 7 years ago under the light of the moon reliving the memories of a first grader, second grader, third, fourth and fifth. If I could have stayed there all my life I would have, because I grew there and changed there, and became the person I am today there. Some people may forget their old public school, but it is the most amazing thing to be back there, seeing first hand how much I have changed. It was one of the most eye-opening, experiences life has offered me, and it was all inside my own mind, my memories. That's my inspiration, for the poem. Its my journey, through life, and my favourite season, autumn. The season I live for, its a season full of fun, love and hard work. The weather ranges from beautiful to horrid, and autumn sees the most drastic but beautiful change. Maybe its my liberal roots, favouring change, truth and beauty. Or maybe it's just how I grew up. All I know is I love it. At the start I said I wanted everything to slow down, but even as I typed it, I knew it wasn't true at all. This is the way I want it. And also, I do want home, but home is not a building, or a place, home is an emotion, and a state of mind. I'm at home.

10:08 PM Comment0 Comments


9:10 PM Comment0 Comments

This is another addition to my Halloween Guide for Dummies (and foreigners).

Its come to that time of year again. The jolliest time of all. When children run door to door singing in a cornucopia of pitches, the merry Carol, "TRICK OR TREAT!" Its Halloween again. The only holiday worth celebrating. It has no religious undertone in fact some argue it goes against religion, and before I get all political its the only holiday that embodies the spirit of FREE CANDY! Now of course with candy comes many other aspects of Halloween. I already covered the Halloween costume and now I'll cover the Jack-o'-lantern.

The Jack-o'-lantern has a long history. In Ireland and Britain lanterns have been carved from vegetables and gourds for centuries. The lanterns were given their current name in 1837 in the United States and first associated with Halloween in 1866. Since the original menacing face was carved on a gourd centuries ago many more have been carved in the spirit of Halloween with the soul goal of making the scariest pumpkin.

Here is my how-to guide to carving pumpkins:
Step 1: Pick or buy a suitable pumpkin (shape depends on what you want to carve, but round is a good standard).
Step 2: Stand the pumpkin so the stem points up.
Step 3: Take a pumpkin carving knife or another suitable knife and cut a circle through the pumpkin exterior, with the stem at it's center. Make sure you cut at a slight angle pointing inwards (this will be your lanterns lid).
Step 4: Take a spoon or scoop and remove all the seeds and flesh from the inside of the pumpkin scraping it clean (these can be saved to make delicious snacks like baked pumpkin seeds).
Step 5: After removing all the pumpkin guts you can begin the fun part, carving the SCARY face. If you have a chosen design take a marker and draw said design on if not I have supplied the best design.
Step 6: First carve out two triangular eyes (point up).
Step 7: Carve another triangle for a nose in the center of the pumpkin (again point up)
Step 8: Now carve a large crescent with the points both pointing up (add as many teeth as you want but usually teeth are sparse).
Step 9: Carve a triangular hole in the lid as a chimney to let smoke escape and air in.
Step 10: Place a tea-light or candle in the bottom of the lantern and light it.
Step 11: Place your Jack-o'-lantern on the front porch to scare the neighbours.

There you have it, a scary Jack-o'-lantern to be proud of for more information or inspiration go to these websites:
Cool Jack-o'-lanterns
Gusick's Jack-o'-lanterns
15 Incredible Jack-o'-lanterns

10:51 AM Comment0 Comments

With Halloween coming up many of you are wondering. What can I be for Halloween? You've gone through all the cliché costumes like Dracula, witch, zombie and you don't want to be Michael Jackson, because you already know 6 people dressing up as Wacko Jacko, or even Zombie Jackson. So what are you left with? Well, you only have one choice. The costume SO cliché that its not. Ghost.

Here's My Step-by-Step Guide to making the perfect Ghost costume.
Step 1: Decide on the kind of ghost you want to be (eg. spirit, poltergeist, apparition, etc. this will affect your personality).
Step 2: Find an appropriate bed sheet (usually white or off-white, some light-greys and light grey-blues are acceptable as well; plaid sheets are not ideal; the purpose will be clear momentarily).
Step 3: Find the middle of the sheet. Make sure when you put your head in middle that the sheet covers all the way to your feet on all sides.
Step 4: Cut two holes near the middle of the sheet big enough to see through and spaced far enough apart for both eyes to be exposed (research your preferred type of ghost for ideal eye shape, eg. slanted angry eyes for poltergeist).
Step 5: Place the sheet over your head so that your eyes fit into the position of the eye holes.
Step 6: Now walk in front of a mirror or friend. Ideally it should look like you're floating (practice that supermodel walk).
Step 7: Give yourself a persona. Who are you? How did you live? How did you die? Why haven't you moved on to the afterlife? Are you haunting anyone in particular?
Step 8: Go out and make yourself heard (practice your creepy ghost noises). Try to appear out of nowhere scaring your friends and family.

Additional Options: For ideal Ghost effect fray the edges of your bed sheet to make it appear ragged. Also, bring the sheet up under your arms to define limbs leave some hanging for ragged effect. Mouth holes are also optional.

11:48 PM Comment0 Comments

This is my 10 Step plan to getting to Germany.
Pre-step: Organize the when and where
Step 1: Get driver's license (extra ID)
Step 2: Find reference's for Job and Passport (2/3 done)
Step 3: Apply to some of the various businesses looking for part-time work. (To earn funds)
Step 4: Voice my plans to the Parental Units (I'll need their cooperation)
Step 5: Fill out Passport Application
Step 6: Get picture taken and signed (For passport)
Step 7: Mail Application (to the nearest passport office)
Step 8: Research tickets (easy these days)
Step 9: Buy tickets (with money earned from job)
Step 10: Go to Germany (on a plane)
Post-step: Have fun, and try not to go broke. Again.

10:13 PM Comment0 Comments

Its nothing new. Everyone knows it. The media is the opiate of the masses. But no one has realized just how bad it is. Every single aspect of the media only serves to aid in building apathy in the youth of today. From the most frivolous materialistic tripe on MTV to a deep and thoughtful documentary about war-torn Sudan. The problem with the media we see every day is, we see it every day. It has become an everyday occurrence to hear about the troubles shaking a far off country. Blood and gore do not have the same effect as they used to. When footage of a genocide is seen alongside footage of Saw IV, the trivial becomes reality and reality becomes trivial. It all meets on this basic median level, entertainment. The opiate of the masses.

Its a problem that I've been hearing lately. Media tells us all these things that are happening in the world and all these evils that must be fixed. Media tells us to stand up and do something about it so this media can't be the opiate can it? No the opiate tells us everything is alright, not to worry, nothing can go wrong, just be happy. But that's where things have changed since the 60s. Unfiltered, raw media coverage of world events is now the norm, so we should all be very aware of the evils in the world. We should all be standing against them, right? But we aren't. The youth are mesmerized by the evils they see in Michael Moore's documentaries and movies like Hotel Rwanda and even Youtube footage of violence against peaceful protesters in Iran, but do we stand up. No. It stays in the back of our heads. We feel like because we saw Blood Diamond, and because we listened to a protest song by Rise Against or The Flobots, that we have done our part. Education is as far as we go.

Some of us will pass the information on, teach other people, tell them about what goes on in the world. But truly we are just introducing our friends to the opiate. Its come to a point where knowing whats going on in the world and learning to live with the fact you can't do anything about it is better than not knowing what is going on in the world around us. This is why even the most morbid and depressing of media is an opiate. If we know whats going on in the world we are less likely to go out and see it, and if we are less likely to go out and see it we are less likely to try and change it. Very few of us will ever, learn the truth, teach others, and go on to take action against the evil.

The other problem is when we confuse meaningful media with media that makes us feel good. An example that can be made is of Bob Marley. While Bob Marley does have quite a few protest songs, his songs are famously happy-go-lucky. There is value in music that promotes peace and love, but at a certain level it starts to give a false impression of peace and love and allows us to believe that everything is okay. Meanwhile wars are being fought all over the world and soldiers on route to fight in Iraq are listening to Bob Marley in their Jeeps to keep up their morale. Happy music does create or invoke feelings of happiness and satisfaction, so it can also, not kept in moderation, make us blind to the truth of the world around us.

So there it is, the source of all our apathy. Its the connectivity; the media bombardment we encounter every day. A mélange of good, bad, morbid, frivolous and earthshaking content. It all becomes overwhelming when we try to separate it into its respective categories, especially when we have to deal with the bad. So what do we do? On some unconscious level we mix it all together into the one category we can easily manage, entertainment. We become desensitized and our sympathies do not become actions or even often words. We have to be careful with our intake of media. We have to be sure to separate the good from the bad, the frivolous from the meaningful, and we have to consider what does it all mean? How does it affect me, and those around me, and others? These are all important questions for every concerned citizen. And finally if you want to break the cycle of apathy, what can I do to change this?

9:39 PM Comment0 Comments

So, Sony releases their slim version of the PlayStation 3. True innovation if you ask me. Where other companies look to innovate and provide a better gaming experience to users, Sony just says, "Well, we'll make our system smaller and more attractive, and everyone will buy it." So they put it on a diet, but it wasn't working so what did they do? Lowered the price to $299. They basically turned the PlayStation 3 into a cheap crack whore. But look at what the competitions doing. Microsoft is going to revolutionize gaming with Natal, the motion sensing, AI peripheral... that will cost users upwards of 400$. Okay, so Microsoft is innovating, but not doing much for the consumer's wallets. Then there's Nintendo, who's been fucking us all along. They had the technology for 1:1 motion sensing at the very beginning, but instead of releasing it on launch day bundled inside the little Wii remote they decided, "Hey, we'll let them play with half-assed motion sensors for two years and then when the novelty of flailing their arms randomly wears off we can make an extra buck off 1:1 motion sensing and no one will notice our clever trick." Also, how can the slim, HD, blu-ray playing, 120 Gb hard-drive PS3 system with 100 times more processing power than the Wii be only 100$ more than the meagre Wii? Finally, after 3 years Nintendo has agreed to a 50$ price cut that brings the Wii from 250$ to 200$... they could have done much better not to bundle Wiisports with it in the first place and sell it at 200$ then cut it to 150$ now, but maybe the economics isn't on my side here. What's one of the selling points for the Wii? Its supposed to be cheap. Its supposed to be accessible to everyones price-range, but you'll probably find that it quickly becomes more expensive than any system with its many peripherals. Between the console, an extra wii remote an extra nunchuk, classic controllers, virtual console/wiiware games, SD cards, 2 wii motion pluses, balance boards, a few games, maybe a few accessories a la Wii Zapper we're looking at upwards of... 600-700$. That's only if you don't want to go for the full 4 controller set. And whats this new feature in Nintendo games that allows players to skip parts of the game if they're too hard? Or to have the game play it for them? I thought game guides were bad, but now the actual game will play for me. That's just obscene, its an interactive media for a reason, you aren't supposed to watch it like a movie. Casual gamers are hands down ruining gaming. So Sony sucks, Nintendo is screwing us over, and Microsoft is... tolerable but still staying costly. What choice are we to make? Well, to be honest, the choice I should have made was not to get a gaming system at all, because I rarely play videogames these days. They just aren't living up to their hype and publicity anymore. The gaming industry has taken a long slippery slope since the hayday of Nintendo 64 and PS1. There was a point where the Big Three stopped being passionate about what they did and just started grabbing for money at every turn, that is the point where I stopped being passionate about gaming. I feel like, as much as the gaming crowd is "expanding" to new audiences, it is ultimately dieing because of the policies of these corrupt organizations. The new gamer is a gamer that gets bored after a week and moves on to new things, but these are the perfect impulsive people with disposable income for the gaming industry to market to. These people don't care about quality, they care about a cheap thrill for two minutes and once the companies have sold their system what do they care if it gets thrown in the garbage? Nintendo sure doesn't care about attach rates, considering the average attach rate is 0 for Wii (with WiiSports bundled). Hopefully someone will start developing for people who actually enjoy videogames, hopefully, this boom of casual gamers will prove unprofitable for the companies, and I can start to enjoy gaming again.

8:59 PM Comment0 Comments

This is, a fluff blog. A day where I feel I have nothing concrete enough, or good enough, or complex enough to write about at length. So I'll just talk. The difference between writing and talking? Writing, I try to be formal, and usually don't say the words I, me, etc. Talking, informal, unorganized, personal, biased (more than usual) subject to change. Subjects of the day, Olympics, destinations versus outcomes, and emotion.

So, in the news. Rio de Janeiro has earned the right to host the 2016 Summer Olympics. This is.. to say the least, exciting. Its the first time a South American country has hosted the Olympics, it is being hosted in city considered to be a developing nation. It is in short, a breakthrough.

A lot of people are surprised as Rio was the weakest bid and the strongest contender was Chicago. Personally, I was not surprised that Chicago was the first eliminated and Rio the ultimate winner. People don't want to see another American Olympiad they don't want to see a second in Madrid and they definitely don't want to see a third in Tokyo. Rio de Janeiro is exciting and new and what everyone wants to see. So it's a breakthrough, what can we expect for 2020? Maybe a city in the Muslim world, most likely candidate, Dubai. To be honest, if Dubai submits an Olympic bid, I feel that they will be the strongest candidate regardless of the competition, will they win? Who knows? Other exciting options are South Africa, unfortunately, extremely unlikely. Its not likely that Africa will host the Olympics for years to come.

Rio 2016 is a destination. A place I'd like to be. A place I hope to end up. Speaking of destinations, today I was thinking, about the difference between destinations and where we actually end up. There's a difference. We start at Point A and want to get to Point B. Point B is a destination, but regardless of whether we get there or whether we end up at Point C somewhere along the way our destination became something else. Not a destination, but I don't quite know the word. The most logical word I can think of is an outcome. But at the same time, it seems inadequate. So I asked, "If a destination is where you want to go, what is where you end up?" The answers I got: a destination (if you're lucky), Hell, emotion, an end, a beginning and I don't get it. All valid answers, reflecting optimism, pessimism, idealism, and even realism. Yes I'm just adding ism to the end of words to sound smarter. Jism.

I liked emotion though. In literal terms the answer doesn't make any sense in relation to the question. But it makes me think. Emotion drives us. Its what creates a destination, and also what makes us stray from our very plan and leads to our end or beginning or outcome. In four months I've had copious amounts of plans and destinations. In this time, I have reached, very few of these destinations, because of emotion. I realized that I have been consistently happy for several months, without even coming to any destinations. And its weird because it makes me sad knowing that I'm not experiencing the full range of emotion. It feels as though when you're happy, you lack the passion and emotion necessary to truly excel. If you're happy you're no longer improving. Hence, why I am sad tonight.

It sucks that my blog has become an emotional personal shittay blog that a 15 year old girl would write. Mmmm, Rio, Destinations and Emotions hurray!

10:18 PM Comment0 Comments

Today I attended a youth group at a Baptist Church. Of course I went in with a healthy dose of skepticism so that I would not be indoctrinated into their cult (as I've been brought up to call all forms of religion or belief systems). I also went in with an open mind however. I must say, as much as the experience fueled the fires of cynicism against religion within myself it also was an enriching and educational experience.

The truth is, bible study does have merit, as boring as it seems, it has historical context. The events told in the Bible however exaggerated they may be have a grain of historical truth, but also, a whole rice platter of moral truths or lessons. What's important is to look past the Bible's literal translation and see the areas of truth. You can see the lessons it teaches and ask yourself if they are right for you, and not all will be right for everyone. Let's not stone adulterers, but let's love our neighbours.

This being said, there are still aspects of religion that infuriate me, and that make me uncomfortable in a youth group. For one, they always pray for the believers in Christ. They say, "My prayers go out to all the kids who are believers in here." What about those who are not believers, they do not deserve prayer? It crossed my mind that it may be an issue of sensitivity rather than snobbery that atheists or agnostics may not want to be prayed for, but I'm unclear on the issue.

The other thing is that justification for any rule laid out in the Bible is that it is the word of God and God is God. Well today I told someone to shut up, they should have listened to me because it was the word of Me and I am Me. What is the significance of God being God? Why did he tell us these things? Why should we blindly follow these rules just because we believe him to be all-powerful and wise? Its a question of standards, no one should submit to any authority that cannot justify their position. We are taught from a young age that, "Because I said so," is not a good enough argument. So why is it good enough for God.

5:18 PM Comment0 Comments

Hurray! I'm too lazy to make a blog today so read the Comic I made in Adobe Illustrator. Yeah I know, I'm hilarious, and a talented artist. NOT!

12:26 PM Comment0 Comments

Planning for any reason is selfish. If you make a plan it means you have an agenda and all agenda's are ultimately self-serving. Whether or not your plan benefits others your actions will still benefit yourself in status and reputation. There is no way to plan unselfishly. Any act of pure selflessness must be unplanned and spontaneous. It has to be in the moment or else you have sowed the seeds of intent to reap personal rewards.

There is no such thing as a selfless plan. You plan to give a loved one a present at great cost to yourself, but in the back of your mind you still look forward to that personal gratification at knowing you made them happy, or knowing that they love you more. Some may argue that the personal gain in giving can be smaller than the personal profit, even when planned but do we not almost always go into gift-giving assuming that our gift will be reciprocated equally. We exchange presents during the holidays, usually of equal monetary value. Plans are selfish, giving is selfish.

If we strive for selflessness we should strive to one day take a bullet for someone in the heat of the moment. But here we are planning yet again. Don't stress about your planning; though it may be selfish, you are impossibly easy to sabotage if you lead a life without plans. Total spontaneity is not an easy thing to achieve, and selflessness is overrated. Selflessness feels good after the fact, but then you could get a similar feeling from selfish giving. You won't be an enlightened being, but that's life, we can't all be perfect.

Unfortunately you also can't plan to be spontaneous. The only way you'll ever achieve that goal is if you accidentally fall into a coma, but then what's worse than not being spontaneous, being predictable. Even this blog was planned, technically, I had a conversation with a friend about how plans are selfish. He suggested I write a book about it. I said I thought about it, and he told me that he smelled a plan coming on. There's the sabotage.

Well, this was pointless. I just stated something everyone already knew. That planning is good. Except I put a spin on it and said that plans are selfish, but still important, because there is no other way to live. If anyone reads this, they'll think I'm an idiot. If you're reading this, post a comment.

9:41 PM Comment0 Comments

We are in the end of days. It is told by countless sources. Ancient and modern. Mystical and mathematical. Sweeping changes are coming our way. Changes that could bring about the end of humanity and any recognizable world. Our actions are leading us down a path to disaster and incalculable destruction. Our decisions could mean the difference between survival of our species and Armageddon. Every minute of every day our world as we know it changes. But as more time passes and more conscious minds are lit up in the world around us, the change grows ever quicker. Steadily then exponentially. When our consciousness can be spread around the world and seeded to millions of minds in a matter of seconds it is not a question of whether we have an impact, but how much of an impact we have. And whether our actions are leading toward destruction or salvation. We all have a choice. To be generous or selfish. Proud or meek. Forward thinking or stagnant. We are the Architects of the Last Day. Our lives are the design for the world to come. We are at a turning point. Sacrifice, development and preservation are the mantra of the new generation of Architects. We are profoundly shaping our world in everything we do. For better or for worse, it is our design and we will be accountable.

7:29 PM Comment1 Comments

I'm not posting a photo with this one because, putting his photo up would only serve to boost Kanye West's ego more. I'm doing enough by writing this in the first place (not that he's ever going to see or read this).

Does Kanye West have a Narcissistic Personality Disorder? If so, is it bad enough to be considered Malignant Narcissism? Every day he seems to get more self-absorbed, more anti-social and more narcissistic. Everyone by now has heard about his antics at the VMAs but let's recap anyway. For the award of Best Female Video Beyonce's "Single Ladies" was up against Taylor Swift's "You Belong With Me" and the 19 year old country singer took the prize. Teary-eyed and halfway through her speech Kanye West marches onto the stage grabs the microphone from her and says, "Taylor Swift, I'm gonna let you finish this, but Beyonce's video was one of the best of all time." Taylor Swift is obviously visibly shaken, Beyonce shocked and Kanye completely apathetic.

What drove the fabulously rich and famous Kanye West to break every code of sportsmanship and in a single moment obliterate any respect the populous had for him? The only logical conclusion is his narcissism is getting worse. This would not be the first indication of a narcissistic personality disorder from the 35 year old rapper. He has a history of violent outbursts of language and fists, including assaulting paparazzi. He is as self-promoting as a famous rapper can be praising himself as the "voice" of this generation.

Now, he did release a short-lived apology, on his website, to Taylor Swift, MTV and fans, but not only was the apology hollow towards Taylor and lauded towards himself, it was quickly removed. He described himself as Soooooo sorry, but then quickly added that Beyonce's video was still the best and he was just being "real." What most of us would call being egotistical, insensitive and ignorant, Kanye West calls "keeping it real." Spouting a distasteful rant to millions of fans live on tv in the presence of the rantee is not keeping it real.

What kind of god complex and love of self-indulgence does one need to think that they can go ahead and do something like that? Sure it doesn't take much physically to steal the microphone and say a few words but emotionally and morally it would be difficult if not impossible for a thoughtful, empathetic human being to do such a thing to someone who has done absolutely nothing wrong. Does Kanye empathize? Some would cite his philanthropic work in charity and benefit concerts as proof of his empathy, however, it doesn't take much out of you to sign a paper and spend a tiny fraction of your money off to the less fortunate in order to gain the much needed public reputation.

Kanye West is self-appreciating, anti-social, egotistical, self-centered and a narcissist. His faults grow day by day as he strives to "keep it real" for the generation he speaks for. If he's the voice of this generation I guess that means we have no respect for the people around us and only live to see our own profits. His personality is characteristic of Narcissistic Personality Disorder and it seems to grow worse day by day. Kanye West the Malignant Narcissist will not stop until the day he's suffocated by his own over-inflated ego.

Also, by his old song Jesus Walks, it can be concluded that he thinks he is Jesus incarnate.

11:01 AM Comment0 Comments

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There's nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, Our presence automatically liberates others."

-Nelson Mandela quoting Marianne Williamson in his 1994 inaugeral speech

I heard this powerful quote on the Family Channel movie "Akeelah and the Bee". Akeelah was a young African American girl growing up in a poor Los Angeles community. She was an exceptional young speller and overcame peer-pressure, poverty and her own fear of success to win the National Spelling Bee. It doesn't sound like much, but it was an exceptional movie and one of those feel-good inspirational films. This quote, and how Akeelah embodied it in her struggle to overcome her fear of greatness, moved me to say the least.

There is so much truth in this quote. It is a truth I never realized until last night. Modesty is always looked upon as a positive trait, making others feel equal and comfortable around you, but we are all capable of greatness. Every last one of us, and we just enable each other to be meek and unsuccessful by not bragging our talents and skills and prizes. We need to flaunt our successes, to drive and inspire others to be like us, to show them that anyone can do it. We need to fight the status quo in today's society, where the youth follow trends blindly like a lamb to the slaughter and we fear standing out or being successful for fear of looking immodest. We need to change this.

Nelson Mandela is an example of this, by straying from the status quo and flaunting his power and his talents, he fought the evil apartheid government of South Africa. Even in prison for 34 years his words and actions were not forgotten and when he was finally set free he became president of the country he fought long and hard for. It was not modesty and meekness that brought Nelson Mandela to that place it was defiance and confidence. He was not afraid of success; he revered it from the very beginning. Like Nelson Mandela you are born powerful beyond measure. You are born capable of greatness. It is just a question of embracing it, and overcoming your fear of immodesty.

Modesty is overrated. Granted immodesty starts wars, on the other hand it is not modesty that invented the wheel. Modesty is a flawed philosophy. Modesty is stagnation. Modesty is static. Besides there are checks and balances to immodesty. Immodesty to the point of hubris will be your downfall, as demonstrated by empires throughout history. Then again there is a difference between modesty and generosity. Immodesty does not rule out generosity. Knowledge and wealth can be shared without sacrificing ones "greatness" in fact, arguably, generosity increases ones brilliance. Striving to be the best you can be and sharing your greatness, is the best gift there is. It excels the human race and drives civilization forward.

Remember the line, "the meek will inherit the earth."? I don't believe it for a second. Each and every one of us has it in us to be great, to "inherit" the earth and you won't get there by sitting around being modest and fearing what others will think of your dreams. You could go on to be a politician and become the leader of a country, or to become a scientist and save the planet from eco-disaster, or a doctor and save people from disease. And you don't even have to save people or the planet or be a world leader, you just have to do what you want to do, what you strive for and dream of, then you are a true leader. If you think its too late, you can't turn back, then take it in another direction. You can be a teacher and preacher of the cause and create big change, on a small scale, by invoking in others this message, Do not fear success.

Here's a little song that embodies the idea of this quote: Get Up - Shad

11:01 PM Comment0 Comments

Oh Québecia! Our home and native land! Oh seperatists, how you never cease to amaze and disgust me. I designed this graphic to put on a t-shirt. It's meant to be ironic because I don't take Québec nationalism seriously in any way shape or form and I just find it funny and ironic to praise Québec nationalism in big block English words.

Well anyway, a little while back, there was this plan to hold a reenactment of the Battle of the Plains of Abraham in Québec City. For those of you (likely most) who don't know the historical significance of the Battle of the Plains of Abraham. Well it's basically the defining Battle in which Britain took control of Québec. Its a big moment in Canadian and Québec history and was scheduled to be reenacted in Québec city, like the Civil War reenactments in the United States. Of course unlike the mock Civil War shows, that go off without a hitch, one crazy high-profile separatist decided to threaten violence against the event. You know, they call that terrorism and instead of being put in jail or questioned he's been made a keynote guest at the show.

Needless to say, the whole reenactment has been cancelled and apparently is now being held in New York at some point. Yes, this is very historically accurate. Now, instead of having the Plains of Abraham Reenactment they're putting together this Québec culture event including reading of Québecois literature. Now one of the proposed literary readings is going to be the FLQ Manifesto. That is the Front du Liberation de Québec, (for those who need another history lesson) a Québec terrorist group from the 60s that senselessly bombed English businesses and kidnapped high profile politicians (including Pierre LaPorte who they murdered). Its also noteworthy to mention that the event is being held on the anniversary of the confrontation with the FLQ, which is, disturbing in itself.

Now, I'm all for Québec history, but reading the Manifesto of the FLQ as "great" Québec literature is absolutely inappropriate. So inappropriate that even hard-line separatists from the Parti Québecois are boycotting the event. Anyone who lived through the FLQ crisis will remember how comfortable it was to have bomb threats at their children's schools and to have people in military fatigues patrolling the streets. To look at that particular chapter in Canada's history as "great" is a disrespect to anyone who has ever lived in Québec. My own mother recounts stories of being nine years old and not being allowed to go to school because there was a threat against her English school.

Not only is it inappropriate to praise the only terrorist group ever in the history of Canada, it's just ridiculous to consider the Manifesto "great" Québecois literature. Technically its a meager few pages, hastily written and mostly plagiarized from the works of Karl Marx by a bunch of anarchist hillbilly french baffoons. So I'd just like to say, that these Seperatists, take themselves too seriously, and undermine what little respect they have in the international community through actions like this. At this rate, Québec will never be its own independent country. There is more to Québec history than a struggle against the evil English. Its about time the separatists give in, if they can't have basic respect for "their" own culture, history and people.

Here's a few links: Manifesto of the Front de libération du Québec
More information on the actual event
Decide for yourself.

9:17 PM Comment0 Comments

This is an essay I wrote as a summative in Grade 9 Geography, I got 90 in the class. My teacher was kind. I edited it up a bit just now, so it makes more sense, but still it makes absolutely no sense.

Urban Dictionary defines the word “Emo” (ee-moe) as, like a goth but much less dark and more like Harry Potter. Is emo a growing subculture in North America or just a fad amongst overdramatic teenagers? This essay delves deep into the history of Emoism, the arts, social structure and the history of sacrificial cultures proving that emo culture is, in fact, more than just a fad.

To truly understand the issue you must first look at the history. In the mid 1980s emo rock music surfaced in Washington DC. Then it was called Emotive Hardcore but has since been reduced to Emo. The music lasted in waves and still has a wide fan base today. The music is generally soft and has emotionally based lyrics meant to invoke a feeling in listeners. Since the inception of the music scene other aspects of the culture have developed including fashion (usually dark clothing sometimes with bursts of neon colours). This history in itself proves that Emo is not a fad. Where other alleged fads, such as chia pets, failed emo music and its culture alike succeeded in lasting over two decades.

The definition of culture in terms of anthropology is, the sum total of ways of living built up by a group of human beings and transmitted from one generation to another. Essentially it is the way of living of a group of people. Some important aspects of culture to remember when judging whether something is valid as a culture are language, art, music and fashion. Emo culture meets all such expectations. When it comes to language, many poems are written by self-proclaimed “emos.” This also ties into music with some language and poetry being put into the emotionally potent lyrics of the culture’s music. This music has also inspired a mix of fashion and art with amazing artists basing graphics and drawings on their favourite emo bands. Using this irrefutable evidence it is obvious that emo wave is, in fact, a culture.

Many argue that emo could not be a culture because it praises self-mutilation and suicide. If a culture committed suicide it would not have anyway to transmit knowledge from generation to generation. The fact of the matter is that most in the emo culture do not practice self-destruction although their lyrics and words do praise the same. Instead of taking ones life, most in the emo culture channel such emotions and problems through art mediums such as song, poetry and visual arts. The culture has evolved to channel frustration and sadness through their art-forms lowering the likelihood of violence and suicide. Many others in Western culture have learned to hide their emotions from friends and family which results in violence, even against oneself. This is counter to culture. However, the emotional nature of this emo culture reduces the prominence of suicide and violence, proving that the argument against Emo as a culture is debunked.

In proving that emo is a viable culture capable of growth and prosperity, it is relevant to look at historic cultures. The fact is that many cultures and religious movements in the past, up to and including Christianity have praised death in the form of sacrifice and martyrdom. Many cultures have also prospered for millennia actively practicing ritual sacrifice and to this day practice mock sacrifice. Emo culture is no exception to this rule. Emos praise physical and emotional sacrifice in their lyrics as part of their culture. Through looking at historic examples of death-worshipping cultures Emo can in fact be considered a viable culture.

Throughout this essay it has been proved without a doubt that emo is a culture. It meets all requirements for culture and has its own distinct characteristics from others. The culture supports open emotion, sociality and creativity, all characteristics of a distinct culture. Emo culture is evolving and is making an impact on modern music, art and fashion; its about time we accepted Emos as a viable sub-culture in Canada and all of the world.

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