July Rambling: privilege, and 12-tone music

Roger Green was told that he cannot greet pupils from Sandy Lane Primary School in Bracknell, Berkshire, with the gesture because a driver said it slowed down traffic.

Watch the important documentary, Two American Families, online at Bill Moyers’ website. In the same vein, To Rescue Local Economies, Cities Seize Underwater Mortgages Through Eminent Domain.

From Meryl, the graphic novel expert: The Armageddon Letters and the Cuban Missile Crisis. Also, Zahra – from Paradise to President. Published in 2011, its story takes place in Iran, June 2009.

Brief Thoughts on Shelby County v. Holder by Mark S. Mishler. (But the actual title is TOO long!)

Daniel Nester writes about privilege. I found it interesting, in part, because it reminded me of certain white sociology students, in undergraduate school and subsequently, who insisted on informing me about the sources of my oppression. They also insisted I spell “black people” as “Black people.” Meh. Dan also gives cheeky advice for aspiring writers.

Thom’s apology to the GLBT people he knows, and the ones he doesn’t.

6 Things That Will Happen Now That The Sanctity Of Marriage Is Destroyed, presented by George Takei.

Eddie and Keith do a road trip.

Dustbury found this video, which is about Arnold Schoenberg and 12-tone music but is as much about the stifling US copyright law, the creative mind, the boundaries of art, and how we communicate with each other. He “learned more from this half-hour of unconventional pedagogy than from a whole semester of theory.”

It was the first line in Jaquandor’s novel, it was a reflection of first lines of novels generally.

Mark Evanier writes: “My father was a very honest man. Absolutely, utterly honest. Once, he found a wallet in the street with a few hundred dollars in it. He took it home, looked up the number of the person it belonged to and arranged to return it to them…with every buck still in it. He did things like that all the time. All the time.”

Melanie deals with the death of a close family member. “With it comes a closure of sorts. Unfortunately, this is one of those deaths that bring feelings of sadness, but also of relief- a lengthy ordeal over at last.”

Daniel Nester’s dad died, and those “pesky abandonment issues” pop up. He is processing his Notes on Grief, parts I and II and III and IV and V.

Related: 936 opportunities, which made me melancholy thinking about MY dad.

Chris quits smoking! YAY!, despite duress. And she has a new blog! BTW, she also made and sent me yummy cookies!

‘Friendly atheist’ speaks to thousands at megachurch.

How do we pray for a friend in need or a stranger who might be sick or lonely in the hospital or at home?

NOT a Get Out Of Hell Free card.

Arthur answers my questions about music and identity and the roots of his political self and political philosophy & friends and boycotts and some other stuff. He also responded to my slow audience post.

Simplified blogging.

The Mom From ‘The Cat in the Hat’ Finally Speaks.

The secret of the Floating Cork.

I’m egotistical enough to be pleased that Chuck Miller put me in his Best of our Times Union Community Blogs for July 25 and July 18 I also appreciate that he’s trying to promote the TU bloggers the way he wishes the TU would. As noted before, I never know what to write for that audience, until I do, such as when I wrote: The Census site with Congressional district data is cool. Really.

I noted that my friend Lynne tried to walk from Albany to Binghamton, but I didn’t mention that walking on the side of the road is NOT like sidewalk walking.


Daily Mail: Lollipop man banned from high-fiving children because it ‘confuses drivers. “Roger Green was told that he cannot greet pupils from Sandy Lane Primary School in Bracknell, Berkshire, with the gesture because a driver said it slowed down traffic. Hundreds of parents have reacted angrily to the ban by Bracknell Forest Council.”
Followup: “High-five” lollipop man given the green light to give “thumbs up” instead.

The Guardian: Notes from Overground by Tiresias (the pen name of Roger Green) was published in 1984. It became a minor cult, and though it never sold very well, it still gets into the occasional blog today. We admirers occasionally meet and share favourite moments.


You’d like to know following my own mother’s death, we have had a great healing.

I must say that my friends have been most helpful to me in dealing with grief. Apparently, I had said something useful to a friend when her father died, which was at some point after my father died: “Just so you know, I often think of (and quote) your message to me after my dad died, that grief is a non-linear thing. Still happens, in the most unexpected places.”

Well, THAT’S right. Besides the situations already mentioned in this blog, in the past couple of months, I’ve cried at:
* sad songs that have nothing to do with my mother, or death
* the mournful sound of train whistles
* an episode of “Grey’s Anatomy”, where a young father dies before he can take his son to the big game; I believe he had a stroke, which might be a factor for me

Of course, the other thing that’s in play is that this is my LAST parent who is gone. As another friend in the same position noted: “Now there’s no one ‘above’ you. That’s pretty weird, huh? We miss our parents as individuals, but also for the roles they played.” And since both of my parents were only children, I NEVER had aunts, uncles, first cousins. I mean, my PARENTS had aunts and uncles and cousins, but my sisters and I never did. And I’m the oldest of my generation.

A doctor of one of my sisters recommended the book Orphaned Adult: Understanding and Coping With Grief and Change After the Death of Our Parents by Alexander Levy, printed by Perseus Publishing, ISBN 0-7362-0361-0. It shows up on this list of resources to help one deal with grief. The book is at a library affiliated with the Albany Public Library, and I’ve just received it on interlibrary loan.

Another friend wrote: “You’d like to know following my own mother’s death, we have had a great healing. And it has brought our family closer with annual holiday gatherings.” Well, maybe. Certainly, the pathologies of my family were less evident this time than after my father died.

I had forgotten how many of my Albany friends had met my mother at some point when she came up to visit. They all used terms such as “delightful”, “a lovely woman”. One of my old Binghamton friends wrote: “I always liked your mom. She was very down to earth and unpretentious. I loved her smile and how it always warmed up the room.”

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