havepatience: (Default)
When I first heard the news that our president was awarded the Nobel peace prize, I thought it was a joke. Then, when it was still real, I felt indignant. "I like him and all," I said to no one in particular, "but what the hell has he done to deserve this? What does he have in common with Gandhi, or Mother Theresa, or... hmm.... who else has received this award?"

I went on over to Wikipedia, like you do, and looked at the long list of recipients. I was very surprised at a number of the individuals and organizations that are Nobel Peace Prize Laureates. Woodrow Wilson and Henry Kissinger, for instance. But then, in the later 20th and beginning of the 21st century, we see a lot of organizations. Doctors without Borders, for instance. The International Atomic Energy Agency. Reading through the statements of the leaders of those organizations who accepted the prize, I realized something very important. The Nobel Peace Prize is awarded not just because of good work done, but also because of good work in progress, and is very much meant as an encouragement towards more good work. (( http://www.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/europe/10/09/nobel.prize.laureates/index.html ))

"But what good work has Obama done yet?" I hear my rightward and center-ward friends and loved ones asking rhetorically. "All he's done is swatted a fly on SNL!"

Well, I'd bet dimes to dollars that most of us are not aware that Obama, this summer in early July, achieved an agreement with the Russians to decrease our mutual nuclear stockpiles by a third. By a whole third. Really, if the gravity of this is not sinking in, realize that our species' capacity to destroy our planet will be reduced by orders of magnitude. Still within destroy-all-life range, but still. This is HUGE. (( http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=106292556 )) Note: This is in addition to the reductions already to be in place by 2012.

Why didn't you hear about this? Do you remember the news this summer, especially in early July? "MICHAELJACKSONISDEADANDYOUCARE." Not to say I didn't care, but our public discourse and our media representation of important events were completely dominated by Michael Jackson. So, of course, we didn't hear about a little thing like extreme nuclear disarmament.

"But that was done several months after the nomination deadline," says some of my savvier conservative friends. "When he was nominated, he was only in office for eleven days!" Yes, this is true. Let's not forget that one of his first actions in office was a call to close Guantanamo Bay, which has become an international symbol for human rights atrocities and the depraved depths of American hubris. (( http://www.cnn.com/2009/POLITICS/01/22/guantanamo.order/index.html ))

But perhaps more important than these two (of many) concrete accomplishments is something that many Americans will have trouble seeing, due to our insular culture. The election of Obama has heralded a change in international discourse. He is willing and able to engage nearly all parties in diplomatic talks. Some in our country may see that as a problem, preferring to believe in American unilateralism, but in a world rocked by violence, inequity, and resource scarcity, the very symbolism of the most violent, most inequitable, most resource hungry nation (at least perceived as such) sitting down to talk not just with allies and trading partners, but with disenfranchised entities, and even our perceived enemies.... this symbolism is mighty. Indeed, the mere fact of Obama's presidency is a sign of peaceful progress for our species.

I applauded Obama when he said, "To be honest, I feel that I don't deserve [this award]..." and I also applauded Obama when he said, "I will accept this award as a call to action." He does not mean merely a personal call to action, but a call to action for us all. On his inauguration day, President Obama said to us and the world, "We are ready to lead once more." Yesterday, the world said to Obama, "We are ready for your leadership." The world has heartily endorsed American leadership, and rejected American unilateralism.

Obama deserves this award for the work he has done, the work he is doing, and the work he will do. And we deserve a Nobel Peace Prize Laureate as our sitting President. Let's work together to lead the world in peace, equity, and shared resources.
havepatience: (Default)
I love my life.
I have my schedule nearly complete for the next semester, and now I am watching Star Trek: The Next Generation, while installing EEEbuntu on my netbook, and taking the first looks at a dilapidated laptop I inherited this weekend.

Whoo!
havepatience: (Default)
Chords: D5-A5-B5-G5

(very fast punk beat)

An overwhelming sense of apathy
It's hard to be what you think that I should be
And of your guidance I'm in desperate need
But of course, that's the way you made me
It all seems like some master plan
To define what I'll be when I'm a man
But I'm still a kid who needs to grow
That's why I'm putting on this show

Living up to expectations I never set for myself
Curtail my own ambitions, put my heart up on the shelf
Let me live, Let me die
Let me decide what to do with my Life

It's like some giant cookie cutter
And we're expected not to mutter
As we're selected for tasks
Questions never asked
Menial assignments, yes
and tests concerning placements,
It's like some bureaucracy, the education factory

Living up to expectations I never set for myself
Curtail my own ambitions, put my heart up on the shelf
Let me live, Let me die
Let me decide what to do with my Life

(wicked simple punk rock guitar solo)

Why is it you plan what I will be?
Is it to see how I'll affect the economy?
Have two-point-three kids, and a house of my own
Thirty-three and still repaying student loans.
--end song--

A bit of background is in order. I wrote this to express my normal feelings of adolescent angst at being put in a box, defined, and pushed forward on a life plan I didn't understand and wasn't ready to want. I auditioned for the high school talent show with a completely different song, a lovey-dovey sappy song I had written that was also about adolescent emotions. However, when the principal refused to let me drop Advanced English to lessen my workload (this was a time when I was working 5 days a weekend, at school until 9 every night), I surreptitiously performed this song to a rousing applause from my fellow students. I did not win the talent show.

Looking back, there's a lot about myself that's communicated here. Wow, was I angsty. And I'm really frustrated that I can't remember most of the second verse. I'll have to try, and I will update once I do.

It's strange, now, but eight years later, three kids and a house sounds like a blessing. I still don't think I ever want to be pressed into it, or get a career for a career's sake, but it's what seems to be happening anyway.

What a strange fucking time in my life. Everything and nothing made sense. It was so hard, but came so easily. I just knew that I knew everything, and that I had so much more to learn. This was when I really began to articulate my feelings of yearning for non-attachment. If I could just drop out of high school, and hit the road, everything would be hunky dory (judgmental snort).

I think I'm glad I graduated high school, because if I didn't, I wouldn't have gone to college. Which, you know, I think I'm glad that I did. I think.

I can't get to sleep because my teenage punk rock is flooding through my mind. I keep playing air guitar while laying down in bed, trying to figure out that goddam second verse. I'm so tired.

Does anyone that might remember that second verse actually remember it? Clue me in to any parts that you think might be in it. I can remember the cadence and phrasing, but not what was actually said.

(UPDATED 8/28/09: More of the second verse remembered! Way to go memory!)
(UPDATED AGAIN 9/2/90: Whoo!!! Remembered the rest of the second verse! Yay long term memory!

...and upon reflection, wow, what a mediocre song writer I was. It sounds better all fast and squished together, and fast. Did I mention fast?)
havepatience: (Default)
Ten thousand feet above the continent, I blog.

2009 is a freaking strange year.
At the push of a button, with a nominal investment (or free trial offer!click here!) a person can share their lolcats from the clouds.
Although I think the clouds might be more interesting.

So, I guess I will talk about the clouds.

Taking off at 7:30 has allowed us a four hour sunset, heading west. The colors have been incredible. At one point, the topmost layer of clouds was lit golden by the setting sun, and the deeper layers were colored pink and lavender. I thought of my particular favorite tree-fruit.

Shortly after, there were giant cumulonimbus clouds sitting over a hazy fog. It was mountains in the sea, and I swore it was heaven.

Then, the in-flight movie was Star Trek. My Mr Spock has told me that I can be her Captain Kirk, and after watching JJ Abrams' masterpiece, may I merely state that I have been, and always will be, her friend.

\\//_

It's been a wonderful week on the east coast. I think this week will be wonderful on the west coast.

Then, back to the mountains and school.

Man, 2009 is fucking weird.
havepatience: (Default)
Need to go to sleep
Start work at eight
Why can't I sleep



Hacking into a dumpstered computer is fun. Fixed the heatsink problem, put on some thermal compound of my own and tightened the fan screws. No shutting down now! Only took 20 minutes. And to think someone through this in the trash because of that.

Almost makes me want to put his penis cucumber pictures and name on 4chan. But then, I remember I'm not evil.

I'm thinking of wiping the hard drive and sending him a nice e-mail telling him I had done so and that he should be more careful. Anonymous, of course. And since I've decided to give this laptop to a friend of mine (once its rescued) I'll tell him that its now in the hands of a school teacher. Hopefully he'll rest easy.

You know, because his penis cucumber pictures aren't all over the internet.

havepatience: (Default)
It's nice to hear your voice again
I've waited all day long
Even wrote a song for you
It's strange, the way you make me feel
With just a word or two
I'd like to do the same for you

Its nice to hear you say "hello"
And "how are things with you -
I love you"
But very soon it's time to go
An office job to do
While I'm here writing songs for you

Strange
how a phone call can change your day
take you away
Away
from the feeling of being alone
Bless the telephone

It's nice, the way you say my name
Not very fast or slow, just soft and low
The same as when you tell me how you feel
I feel the same way too
I'm very much in love with you
havepatience: (Default)
First post!


I'm terrible at these things.
I think this is the thirtieth blog I've started on the interwebs. Perhaps this one will die like the others.

But before something can end, it must begin, and thus my first post.

Profile

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havepatience

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