Wednesday, February 06, 2013















"Beasts of the Southern Wild": Learning how to stand up to aurochs

     Me and my son Joe and my granddaughter Mena finally got a chance to go see "Beasts of the Southern Wild" the other day.  That whole freaking movie deserves an Oscar.  It's definitely got my vote.  Wow!


 
     And the movie's main plot-line (which involved people idealistically working together to save their small town) reminded me strongly of my own housing co-op where I have lived for the past 33 years.

     And this so-called housing "cooperative" once started off all idealistically too.  Back then, we too had grand and idealistic intentions of working together for the common good -- sort of like how the framers of the U.S. Constitution back in 1776 or whenever had put forth their own dreams of what a more perfect union would look like.

     But gradually, over the years, my small housing co-op shamelessly degenerated into a bunch of self-seeking, self-interested individuals who would do anything to get a leg up.  Corruption, apathy, conflict-of-interest, nepotism, lethargy, back-stabbing and bickering ruled the day among most of the residents.  And, physically, the place soon started falling apart.  I'm talking about major failing infrastructure here.

     And so I've spent the last 15 years of my life fighting like crazy to get a re-hab to happen here at my housing co-op.  And it finally did.  And it's a wonderful re-hab, don't get me wrong.  The contractors are doing a great job.  But the process is truly intense.  The whole infrastructure is being replaced, repaired and/or remodeled -- almost from the ground up.  Inside and out.  And they are doing it while over fifty families are all living here too.

     And the pressure of this intensive re-hab, as people struggle to get their life-long belongings all packed up in boxes, their walls pounded on by a whole battalion of workers, their siding and roofs torn off and put back on again and their heating and plumbing and bathrooms and carpets and kitchens replaced -- it's almost like the pressure of the storms, floods and new levees pressing down on that small town in "Beasts".  And this pressure has also acted to bring my own "small town" together again too and to finally, maybe, even become a real co-op again.

      Or I could just be a dreaming idealist like Hush Puppy in the movie -- but I hope not.

     But is there a moral here somewhere?  Sure, of course.  Just like a huge disaster had brought a small town together in "Beast of the Southern Wild," now our massive (but wonderful) re-hab is finally getting my housing co-op members to actually cooperate with each other for their own good.  And who knows?  Perhaps the many disasters that are also facing America these days will also finally unite us all into working together for our common good too -- instead of all too many of us acting like aurochs toward each other, tearing at each others' throats and ripping each other apart.


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Advertizements for myself: In these hard times of brutal (and illegal) corporatist ball-busting socialism-for-the-rich-only, I am doing whatever I can to make a spare dollar. Here are some of my current alternate-economy schemes that never seem to work -- but I keep hoping!
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 What next?  I'm still trying to get to Haiti ASAP but unfortunately my investigative-reporting trip has had to be postponed until the end of March.  Please donate toward my trip's expenses here if you can: 
https://www.wepay.com/donations/going-to-a-vodou-cave-in-haiti
  And if this link doesn't work, please just cut and paste.  Thanks.

     And if anyone ever wants to hire me on as a travel writer, "Have laptop, will travel!"


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Need someone to help you throw out stuff? I'm really good at deciding what needs to be thrown out (starting with all those corporate-owned bums in Washington!)
 
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Need an actor to play an older woman in your movie?
Then I'm your man! I can portray all kinds of older women -- from judges, business execs and other insane zombies to bag ladies, cancer patients, kindly grandmothers and dying patients in rest homes. I've played them all. So send me a script and let's do this. Hollywood, here we come!

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 Are you a plaintiffs' attorney who is tired of writing those pesky personal injury settlement briefs all the time? No problem! I can write them for you. Years of experience. And pay me only if you win the case.
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I recently got my Notary Public commission!

Need a Notary Public? Have seal, will travel. E-mail me at jpstillwater@yahoo.com and I'll stamp your document, make it official and only charge $10. Of course if you live outside of Berkeley, I may have to charge travel expenses -- but am well worth it!

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I also wrote a book about going on Hajj (also included as a chapter in "Bring Your Own Flak Jacket," but this book is cheaper -- but it's worth buying them both!) My book on the Hajj is so outstanding that I bet even Christian fundamentalists will love it! Please buy it here: http://www.amazon.com/Mecca-Hajj-Lessons-Islamic-School/dp/0978615700/ref=cm_rdp_product

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"Imagine a world where EVERY child is wanted, nurtured, protected and loved: World peace in one generation!"
You can now buy T-shirts, coffee mugs, tote bags, truckers' caps, baby gear and/or teddy bears with this logo printed on them. They make great gifts, especially for parents and teachers. To purchase, just click here: http://www.cafepress.com/StillTWaters

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-uqSuzOjM4vU/TafAFKcYz0I/AAAAAAAAFJc/Duv2LYJyUTs/s1600/IMG_0045.JPGhttp://3.bp.blogspot.com/-dlHRO-CPqf0/Tae6tLspmQI/AAAAAAAAFI0/iUKwYDK1f3A/s1600/IMG_0041.JPG
"Life is a competition. The winners are the ones who do the most good deeds."
You can also buy T-shirts, coffee mugs, tote bags, truckers' caps, baby gear and/or teddy bears with this logo printed on them. They make great gifts, especially for those of us who are still idealists in these troubled times. To purchase, just click here: http://www.cafepress.com/StillTWaters