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Archive for June, 2007

Noticed this banner the first time today: Make Affluence History. Might’ve seen it before, but assumed it said something else.

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The Good Cheer has new tracks online. It’s what all the cool kids are gathered around their desktops to stream this summer. If you are a megastar music mogul, I especially encourage you to give them immediate attention and million dollar contracts.

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It occurred to me today how much the meaning of my high school mascot, the Westerners, has changed after life in graduate education circles. I spent three years cheering them on towards touchdowns, and six years dismantling their right to hegemonic, imperialist oppression of marginalized peoples and native cultural identities.

“V-I-C-T-O-R-Y, that’s the Westerner battle cry! GloooooO – Obalize! Wooo!”

[herky]

Just a side note, and favorite story: We met our lifelong rivals, the Plainsmen (whose “s” always went mysteriously missing from their school sign) for an annual Spurs game, the winner of which would proudly display a pair of golden spurs in their school trophy case. I think we’d lost all of the previous six games with them (probably correlated with becoming a magnet school), until my senior year, when we tied. One spur went to each school. Which (the magnet kids liked to say) meant that we would both be able to ride a horse in a circle.

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I’m in a phase of life where Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood is the most consistent TV viewing I’m doing. So I have a lot of time to think about it.

Somebody submitted a Postsecret card a few weeks ago that was a Mr. Rogers postcard with a message like, “You didn’t prepare me for how cruel the world could be.” I’ve been thinking about this. I realize that there is some legitimate concern about Rogers’ emphasis on self-esteem, his (Carl) Rogerian, therapeutic approach to people’s specialness and feelings, and sense that the way he suggests viewing yourself and others is just not realistic. Especially for a man of his age – a sentiment behind a lot of folks’ judgment that Mr. Rogers is just a little creepy. But I disagree.

What I’ve noticed about Mr. Rogers’ neighborhood is that it is filled with the most gifted people on the planet – Yo Yo Ma, Itzhak Pearlman, Wynton Marsalis, to name a few – and shoe salesmen, and Special Olympians, and a full range of people, tasks, and social roles, each of which Mr. Rogers treats with complete attention, sincere admiration, great curiosity, and tremendous appreciation. (more…)

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I’ve hadn’t listened to Low‘s Great Destroyer in a while, and somehow this song hadn’t caught my full attention before. “Death of a Salesman” offers a redemptive view of dreams discarded and reinterpreted.

It’s a great album.

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Heh. Eh heh heh heh.

(Of course, this doesn’t refer to you).

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“Suddenly, there is a point where religion becomes laughable. Then you decide that you are, nevertheless, religious.”

Thomas Merton quoted in Annie Dillard, For the Time Being, following a reference to Bongo Java’s “Nun Bun”

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