• Recovering

    Depending entirely on Tara Brach these days.  Tara is a fairly famous insight meditation teacher and psychologist who works out of the Insight Meditation Centre in Washington, D.C.. I just recently found her, and she shot to the top of my list.

    Reason is I woke up the last three mornings with the sword of depression lodged deep into my chest. I could feel the edges and heft of its path, the ache it left behind.  Depression, accompanied by deep fear, existential fear and as butter cream icing, itching, screaming, trapped in a box  boredom.  It’s genetic in part. The only terrible thing I inherited from my occasionally schizophrenic mother is an outsized emotional affect. Which has driven me ahead of the storm my whole life. And has now become accumulated pain. Pain to power of 10.  Luckily, I don’t have reality breaks, though I have observed many of them. They never fail to freak me right out. I run. I run.

  • Milk and Honey

    Under the category ‘freaky things about publishing’ Rupi Kaur, an Indian (dot not feather) poet from Toronto, is out-selling Michael Wolff’s Fire and Fury-inside-the-White House-hysteria-tome.  Poetry.  Four lines on every page – maybe a few more.  Line drawings. A young woman, immigrant, poet, from the obscure country, which is to say, Canada, outselling the biggest book in the US market right now.

    Words fail.  Except to say that the heart of the world is in the right place.

    Of course, The Guardian has weighed in. And Buzzfeed beat her up. And like anyone popular enough to be perceived as making unfair amounts of money, grabbing unfair amounts of attention, she has been accused of plagiarism.  Nope, nope and nope. This is courage. And beauty.  And courage again.


  • Shadow Banned

    Just found out I am shadow-banned on Twitter, which is shocking, since I a) rarely tweet b) have 250 followers which is nothing and c) consider myself the very soul of reason, with a side of fiscal responsibility and d) am, in person, the mildest of mild-mannered people, with little but a sense of humor and astonishing good looks to recommend me. That’s some awesome censorship, guys, getting down to the short strokes.

  • Pervnado Not Stopping Anytime Soon

    The torrent called Pervnado continues with Bruce Weber and Mario Testino accused of sexual harassment by male models.  This ought to surprise no one.  Weber and Testino sell high-end titillation and are very good at it. Their sets stink of sex and ambition and hysteria, and like everyone else in that industry, they follow the custom of droit-de-seigneur.  Both of them were brought to prominence by Anna Wintour, easily the wickedest woman in fashion, of the past 100 years and that is encompassing a universe of wickedness.  Wintour single-handedly created the ultra-high-end hooker look adopted by every woman who swims in the fetid sea that is Society in London, Paris, New York, and LA.  She put them on heels that will destroy the mobility of their last 20 years and bullied them into starving themselves into exhausted drooping Christmas trees teetering around the gilded streets of our world, hollow-cheeked and weak as kittens.  Yay Feminism, says Wintour today, putting the terrifying Serena Williams on the cover.  #Metoo #TimesUp cry the Voguettes.  Too late ladies. You wrought it, you own it.

  • Today in the Forest

    Pan chivied me out of the house today by sitting on my shoulders and pressing her face against mine so that I couldn’t see the screen.  “Come ON,” she was saying.  “Follow me!”

  • UnRest

    I spent last year in bed, with a relapse of chronic fatigue, from which I had believed I had completely recovered.  If you ever get a chance to do that – and you probably will if you live long enough – rejoice, there is much pleasure to be found in extended rest.  As well as anxiety, some terror, and bad FOMO.  But since you (I) can get bored with misery, behind that was great politics, acres of books to read, films to watch, forums to observe, and thinking to do.  Being ill, I thought principally about my illness, which I have packed around with myself for 30 years or so through New York, London, Bermuda and coastal British Columbia, where I found, finally, my health.  I blame my mother. My matrilineal gifts are many, including among them long life, my mother and her aunt died at 96, their mother at 97, and a great aunt at 107. But illness or some kind of setting-aside-from-life was part of their lives too. They were Irish in origin, northern Irish, and a house still stands where 12 generations of them have lived and some still live. Somehow they hung on to home, no matter what.

    I know the history of many lines in my family going back to 920 AD.  But I wondered about those women in Ireland from the 1st to 10th century.  Lots of long damp winters, where you stayed in by the fire and dozed all day, eating beans and, if you were lucky, bunnies. Probably not feeling completely well for months at a time.  But through those long rests in a stone house in a cold country where freezing rain is the dominant weather feature, was born over 80 or 90 generations the longevity gene which I now carry.

    We are or were all preoccupied with our health.  When my grandmother went into the hospital at 97 for the last time, a small suitcase tipped and two dozen bottles of nutritional supplements rolled across the floor.  “Was she always ill?” asked the nurse.  My mother nodded.  “Those old ladies go on forever,” she quipped to my mother, who too, carried suitcases of supplements when she traveled.  As do I. I want to live to 105, reading and writing and shopping online to the very last day.

    There is a genetic component to Chronic Fatigue/ME.  No one really knows how it factors in, but it is mitochondrial, or female-based.  Jennifer Brea, a sufferer like me, made a multi-award-winning film last year, called Unrest. It asks many questions, the answers to which may lead to a radical upswing in length of life.

    I’ll be waiting.  Possibly ill, but fully alive.



  • Our region has been completely taken over by greens – federal, provincial, regional and local, who blame all dysfunction on global warming.  Vis, the latest statement from Victoria’s mayor, the charmingly named, the proudly gay, bike riding, free-spending Lisa Helps (shurly a made up name) who blamed the recent increase in bird poop in Downtown Victoria on Global Warming.  This while the rest of the continent is in a deep freeze, there is snow in the Sahara and in the American South.  One is endlessly entranced by the men and women who get into office claiming their ‘different’ sexuality, their refreshingly new racial identity and their commitment to drawing down consumption means they can solve all the problems of modern capitalism.  Poop, of course, is an ongoing Victorian concern, since we pump all the sewage of this modern city straight into the gulf where there is a measurable and distinct decline in the health of sea life.  One hundred years ago, a Canadian man with a high school education pushed the highest longest railroad tunnel in the world through a mountain in BC.  But today we cannot solve bird poop or sewage.