Sunday, September 6, 2015

Yes, I am in LA now.

I have been living in Los Angeles for two years now, and still don't know what to think. It is exciting but difficult. I have no alternative and am determined to stay. Weather the storm, man or woman the boat! My kids are here, and that is why I stay. I have no job, no boyfriend and few friends. I do walk alot and that is good. I am working on a TESL certificate from UCLA. So far, all As. Not bad, for an old broad. Keep at it, keep moving, don't look back, stay the course.

Monday, May 13, 2013

The Artificial World of Emails

Many of us are on the internet (right now for example), busily engaged in sending emails back and forth about everything and nothing. The speed and efficiency is a wonder in itself. I deeply appreciate the internet in that it is a rather unifying force and a force to be reckoned with. Emails are like ultra speedy letters that can reach a multitude of persons  at the same time, if you wish.
They are however, not a substitute for friendship, or any form of intimate relationship. They are a way of reaching out in order to form a friendship or to have a romantic partner, but they are not the real thing. Call them a means to an end but not an end in itself. How can you have a real friend you have never seen? How can you possibly fall in love with someone whose voice you have not heard, whose face you have not looked, whose presence you have not felt? You cannot, I say. A substitute is not the real thing, it is a replacement, it is a shadow, it has no substance.
Why would people be satisfied with replacements or substitutes? Because an illusion of reality is better than nothing. If you can't have the real thing then settle for the illusion, in the minds of many people; so I allege. They believe it is real and maintain their cyber friendships and romances are true to the core. Are they? Doesn't their belief system fly in the face of what we humans are all about? Are we not about flesh and bone? We're not mechanical entities, a set of fingers flying over a keyboard.
Illusions may be handy for a short while, but in the long run they will dissipate and eventually turn into dust.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Why Live Anywhere but Los Angeles?

That is an exaggeration,  but after returning from a trip to LA, that is more or less how I feel. Sure I've been to the city before and so it is not like I am overwhelmed at a first time experience. It helps that I was visiting my daughter and stayed in the comfort of her apartment, complete with cats and a wonderful view of tall palm trees perched on a hill. I loved being with her.
LA is friendly, cool,  with a sense of humor. It doesn't take itself too seriously. How can it? It is the film capital of the world, meaning that it is all about manufacturing illusions for a public eager to indulge. It has one foot planted in escapism and the other in real work, with people hustling back and forth trying to make a buck to the fast rhythms of the city, all in a beautiful setting. It's  tropical like Rio, but easier to handle, and you don't feel that chaos simmering in the background. I lived in Rio.
LA is also a family town. In the Armenian section you see people of all generations walking together, wheeling baby strollers, sticking to their culture like nobody's business. I felt good seeing that. It reminded me of the Mediterranean.
I found excellent and inexpensive food in Thai restaurants. Actually the prices in LA were not too high at all, with the big exception of the rent.
Film festivals everywhere, people who were quick and engaging, actually all kinds of people walking around, including an elegant  seventy something woman with short pink and purple hair (I loved it.) Be anything you want to be in LA, it's all accepted. Come to think of it, why would you want to live anywhere else? As soon as I rent my house I'm moving out there.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Why Are Extremist White Men So Ugly?

Is it just me or has anyone  noticed how here in the US that extreme right wing white men are just plain ugly. Not only are they ugly but some of them have a eunuch like look about them. Take a look at Mitch McConnell. Or the Koch brothers, or Alan Greenspan or North Dakota governor Jack Dalrymple, who is trying to shut down his state's only abortion clinic. It's like ugliness goes together with nastiness, in their cases. Their thinking must go like this, "OK, I'm not good looking, the women won't be chasing me, and so might as well grab as much power as I can and screw everyone over." By everyone I mean people who are not part of the ruling class, and that means most of us. It's as if these guys are out for vengeance for being so damn homely, with a big 0 for sex appeal. Sure they know they're not sexy, they hate it, and to compensate wreak havoc.
Alright, alright, there are exceptions. Yeah, you'll find some halfway decent looking right wingers, although they can't get rid of that stuffy, haughty demeanor which is not too attractive to women, unless she is looking for a guy with deep pockets and these men can be very rich.
Which brings me to another topic.Why are all the beastly looking, right wingers who happen to have a lot of power, married? Who are these women who marry them? Hate to say it but they are probably looking for a comfortable life, they share his views because they have no views of their own, and they manage to gain power through their  husbands. Remember how in old movies when a woman was introduced as "the Colonel's wife" or some such thing. That was a hell of an honor for her. All of these women who are alllies of patriarchy are no friends of feminists. Yeah ally girls line yourselves up on the side of the Mitch McConnells for a paltry place in the sun. You're the ones who have to deal with them in the bedroom.
The extremist right wing patriarchs know that if the playing field were level, they would be among the last to be chosen as mates. That's got to hurt a little or a lot. Look how they seek revenge.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Stop US Drones - Demonstrate on April 13

US drones have killed approximately 5,000 civilians, including about 176 children in Pakistan and Yemen. Were these children enemy terroritsts? This is a crime. The Obama administration has decided to conduct a remote control war, where young men in some war room, look at screens and kill by pressing buttons. Do they realize that the people on ground could be boys and girls, as young as one. Yes, babies have been killed. People living in countries where drones routinely fly by. live in constant fear. They have killing machines above them, making horrible sounds, and that may strike at any moment. These drones are terrorizing people in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Yemen and Somalia. The sovereignty of these nations  is being violated, and they are helpless because they are poor. Of course the UN does nothing.
I have read that every Tuesday Obama sits down with a deck of cards that have men's faces printed on them (suspects you might say), and selects people he thinks are terrorists, and then orders them to be killed by drones. Isn't this called extra judicial killing? Some have called it death squads. It is plainly illegal, immoral, and has resulted in an incredible amount of human suffering among the poor of countries being targeted.
On April 13 the Answer Coalition ( along with other groups, will be demonstrating against these drones, all over the country.  A huge demonstration is planned for Washington D.C. People should get out on the streets and say, not in our name will children be killed.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Imam of Local Mosque Speaks Out

I got in on the tail end of a talk given by the Imam of the local mosque here in the Southwest. Actually another activist and I had gone to the mosque to ask him if he would speak at an upcoming anti drone rally sponsored by the Answer Coalition. As we listened to him speak I was struck by how this young black African man was so earnest and engaging. He was seated at a table in front of an audience of mainly women in traditional dress. He leaned forward as he spoke of respect for women, how the husband is supposed to provide everything for the household and the woman does not share in the expenses. Good thing I thought. I believe he actually said women are three times better than men. Wow!
The man is charming no doubt. I didn't get any feeling of sanctimoniousness, holier than thou. He spoke of Islam in a real clear, understandable way. Who would have guessed that I would learn so much. He said he was ready to actively engage with the community on all occasions, to reach out etc. Refreshing.
After the talk we approached him and asked if he could speak at our rally. He readily agreed. He shook my male friend's hand, but not mine. Tradition.
Pizza was served later.The ladies of the mosque, seeing that we were new faces, approached us in a curious and friendly way. Enjoyable. As I was about to take a sip of soda, the Imam passed by and glancing at me said, "I will be there" in an obvious reference to the rally. I wonder if he'll march with us.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Blood on Their Hands

The warmongers and profiteers of the Iraqi invasion caused the deaths of over a million Iraqis, coutless injuries, infants born with malformations never seen before in that country (see previous blog), scores of displaced persons, ruin of infrastructures and more. More than 4,400 American soldiers lost their lives. This was a war based on imperial conquest, oil resources, and corporate profits.
According to the warmongers' thinking, if the Iraqi people had to pay the price, so be it. Acutally I don't even think that these war criminals gave a second thought to the pain and suffering they were about to inflict on a nation, in the runup to that war. An understanding of their way of thinking can only be found if one realizes that to them the Iraqis were expendable, a means to an end. They were considered pawns in the buildup of empire. There was no legitimate reason to invade Iraq, and so Bush, Cheney, Rice, Powell, Wolfowitz, Rumsfeld and the majority of the congress people who supported them,  invented reasons, and the war drums began. The drum beating  ended in the invasion of Baghdad, with the cartoonish and insulting  name  Operation Shock and Awe. Talk about supremacho titles. The only problem was that it wasn't macho at all but cowardly, because the U.S. is vastly superior militarily to Iraq.
All of those against that war did everything we could to stop it. We marched, we signed peititions, we wrote articles, we appealed to the UN, but we all knew that somehow we were fighting a losing battle. The monster of war was out of the bottle, and most Americans supported it.
 A few days before the invasion I felt despondent, knowing that Baghdad would certainly be attacked, and that people would be killed and many would be children. I went out and bought a set of prayer flags and hung them outdoors, as a symbol of compassionate thoughts to those people who were about to be bombed, about to lose children, about to have their homes destroyed, about to lose their lives. It was all I could do. The war criminals had their way. Today they sit pretty, hold their heads up , are interviewed on TV, and live comfortably. They are still arrogant and remorseless. None has been held accountable.