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Ferrit Leggings

Joined: 29 Mar 2004
Posts: 2658
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Sorry that was me.

I feel the same way about disco as I do about herpes. -HST

Post Sat Nov 06, 2004 2:38 pm   View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
Site Admin

Joined: 02 Mar 2004
Posts: 3833
Location: People Republic of Northern California
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You Guys:

Here's a great letter I got the day I after I wrote the Win-win piece. The writer asked not to be identified, and I've changed the name of the organization they work for, but otherwise this is pretty much how it came. It says some nice stuff about my work, but that has nothing to do with why I asked to post it. You'll see...

Dear Author Guy:

As a native New Yorker, I spent over two years of my life working with the survivors of 9/11 in the a disaster assistance agency at a disaster assistance service center; yes, a "service center". I worked at the Jiffy Lube of the apocalypse). It was our job to make sure that those who had survived had a "tomorrow" to live for. We did everything from pay bills to crisis therapy. (Our offhanded and rather dark motto was "Jiffy Lube of the Apocalypse, get your bills paid in under an half hour or the next disaster's on us.")

In the depths of that hell, my friends that did not work at the agency rallied around me and would often bring me tokens of relief and beauty; reminders that the world was not all about taking the blame for the lies spewed by Fox News, dodging the press that demanded to know how I could be so callous as to try to help... all while trying to show people who had lost all hope, where it might be found again.

One of those tokens I was blessed to receive was Lamb and your writings have been a bright spot in my day ever since. Lamb came to us rather late in the game but it was an instant favorite. Lamb struck a cord with most of us at the disaster center. (Though, I admit, those who were awaiting The Rapture found it less than amusing.) I worked for the <organization withheld>; which is an organization of not just born again clothes, but born again Christians as well. To be able to laugh at the dogma surrounding spirituality without degrading spirituality itself was a true gift. I would often have flashes of Josh asking Biff which part he wanted to participate in during the cycle of resurrected lizards when the orginizations officers would ask non-Christian clients to pray with them before they paid bills. We would quote Biff's comment about the Kali death and destruction "I'm noticing a theme" on the more ugly of days. To be completely honest, it was in many ways, lifesaving to be able to laugh until we fell out of our chairs and you are the reason we did so on many occasions.

The work itself was anything but gratifying (oddly, battling overwhelming and all consuming human suffering, rage and misery does not rank on my top ten of "ways to make a job satisfying") but I had taken refuge in the idea that, if this were to ever happen again, we would be prepared. After all, we at the agency were blazing a trail and were finally getting down a best-of-all-possible-worlds design for recovery. However, by the time I left at the end of 2003, Homeland Security had visited once for approximately 15 minutes asked "Is there anything we need to know?" and didn't even bother to bring a notepad, while Senator Clinton knew us all by name. So, I took solace in the idea that, though there were irretrievable morons in charge, at least they would be ousted when they finally had to face a real election. When they won, I realized that most of what we did was in vain. All the plans we drafted are gone, all the mistakes we made will have to be remade and most of the resources that we had are now dried up because the electorate thinks that it's safer that way. Thank god we have a president who is firm in his refusal to know what should be done to pick up the pieces should it ever happen again. Suffice to say, I am putting the finishing touches on my application to grad school (yes, I'm a youngin'; I have just turned 26 and was merely 22 when I started working at the agency) in France and my best friend/former-boss-at-the-agency is now looking at living in Europe.

However, after having read your blog, my day is a bit brighter, my step a bit lighter and my sense of humor seems to be returning home. It is helping me make peace with the fact that this country is headed straight for the dock, full speed ahead but at least I have done everything I can. So, once again, I thank you.

Post Mon Nov 08, 2004 2:40 am   View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website

Joined: 10 Aug 2004
Posts: 6381
Location: Michigan
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Twitter: jefftunes

Post Mon Nov 08, 2004 3:29 am   View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail

Joined: 02 Nov 2004
Posts: 12
Location: Hudson Valley
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KEB, you should check out the Gary Jules cover of Mad World from the Donny Darko soundtrack. It takes the song to a whole new level.

Wow! Thanks for the suggestion. It sort of reminded me of a lullaby in that it forces you to slow down and leave the panic behind. But instead of sleep, despair seeps right in. I really really like it - I will just need to find something cathartic soon. It has the same feeling that some of the October Project songs had - subtle, dark, and moody.

Post Mon Nov 08, 2004 8:15 am   View user's profile Send private message

Joined: 22 Sep 2004
Posts: 12
Location: Wherever I go, that's where I am
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But just in case, even as you enjoy the sense of speeding toward a bright and hopeful future, grab your ass and brace for impact. Just know that it ain't your fault.

Perhaps. But if I still manage to become a casualty of the wreckage, (even through no fault of my own,) I'll still be just as dead. Sad

Sorry. I guess my pessimism and cynicism die harder than that of most folks.
I think, therefore I'm single.

Post Mon Nov 08, 2004 11:23 am   View user's profile Send private message

Joined: 30 Mar 2004
Posts: 1324
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I am of the considered opinion that the whole hippie thing was a delayed reaction to Eisenhower. What then may one reasonably expect a few years down the road from Bush?

My point is that the currents of history swirl and eddy in the oddest of directions. And who is to say, with reasonable foresight, what can lead to what?

I have a sneaking suspicion that even though Bush won the election, it profiteth not the conservative to be too smug, nor justifieth the liberal to be despairing.

Santiago notwithstanding (Those who do not learn the leswsons of history...) history is either one big fucking mess or too damned complicated to figure out. Sometimes it seems to turn on a dime.

Courage is therefore justified, n'est pa?

Post Sun Nov 14, 2004 7:51 pm   View user's profile Send private message

Joined: 28 Sep 2004
Posts: 452
public sentiment like a pendulum  Reply with quote  


I think you are right, and I also tend to think that public sentiment swings in an arc, and that right now we are what I SINCERELY hope is the highest swing to the right - I hold on to the hope that the pendulum will therefore begin its swing back towards the left. (I am using left and right out of convenience, even though I am not particularly fond of the terms.)

However, might I add - many days I have been contemplating a run towards your hometown (Toronto, correct?), in the event that I am wrong and the US is on a path of swinging ever more towards the right...perhaps you should begin plans for an underground railroad for us?? Wink
Better than a thousand hollow words,
Is one word that brings peace. ~ Buddha

Post Mon Nov 15, 2004 7:24 am   View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
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