1. As an exploration of depictions of the divine to start this morning, and of indigenous perceptions of divinity...
2. RIP Stephen Furst, of St. Elsewhere and Babylon 5 fame.
Some of these may be more to your liking than others. But I put the link forward to promote curiosity.
"When it comes to holiday food, most people probably think of turkey. But in Indigenous communities, the choices can be as diverse as the individuals who prepare them.
From canned moose to rabbit stew, here are just a few of the meals that Indigenous people are sitting down to this holiday season."
From the Guardian: Mark Ruffalo - yes, the actor - on his visit to Standing Rock, ND. Interesting sidebar he mentions in passing: there's a Navajo-based company making solar panels.
Same newspaper: Apparently, there's a fight going on within the FBI over the 2016 USA presidential election at the moment.
On surveillance in Canada: Montréal police vs. journalists on the one hand (with commentary on the matter coming from, among others, Edward Snowden via videolink to McGill University), and CSIS accumulating metadata on a second hand. We'll assume there's additional arms waiting to be revealed, although I don't expect a reveal of HYDRA-style plotters behind any of our scenes. If anyone in Ottawa raises anything akin to the Skull and Tentacles on a flagpole anywhere near Parliament Hill, that will be a real shock. (Also, Disney will unleash something more fearsome than any army upon the perpetrators: intellectual property lawyers. And that will be the end of that scheme.)
Speaking of actors again: Emma Watson and a bunch of accomplices are trying to get conversations about literature going via the London Underground. I think we have enough notable authors scattered across Ottawa-Gatineau and beyond in both official languages and a couple of indigenous languages as well to get something similar going as well once the expansion of the O-Train network is truly underway. Mark Bourrie, the Ladies' Killing Circle, Jay Odjick, Marie Bilodeau, S.M. Carriere, Alex Binkley and I expect there are others I'm forgetting (but not ed_rex!)...and as for actors? We're growing that community, too.
On street names: Remember Ottawa's Central Park district near the Experimental Farm, with streets named in a New York theme? As a comics fan, I was tickled to see one of those side streets named for Gotham, but the people who live on Trump Avenue are getting annoyed at the heightened notoriety. The people running Ashcroft Development and Ottawa City Hall at the time the development was first approved might have some belated second thoughts about the naming, no? "Hillary" as an alternative, however, is already taken by a street in the Guildwood Estates area.
One of those stories, "Lost in Space", that he and Candy Palmater discussed had a premise that got me thinking. Conclusion I reached: someone, someday, is going to be the first of each of their peoples to go to space. Be they Haida, Inuit, nêhiyawak/Cree, Omàmiwininiwak/Algonquin, Mikmaq...each of them is going to have a first space traveller someday.
Mr. Hayden Taylor might get them thinking that way too. And planning ahead for it. Not a bad thing.
Can we get a deal between Hayden Taylor and Pocket Books re: Trek novels?
From Q's YouTube page: Growing up, Drew Hayden Taylor immersed himself in science fiction books yet he often felt left out. Unable to see his own Ojibway experiences reflected in these works of literature, Taylor has since written a number of books through the perspective and lens of Indigenous people. He joins guest host Candy Palmater to discuss his collection of indigenous sci-fi stories in his new book "Take Us to Your Chief".
Books I'm working on reading: 100 Days of Cree by Neal McLeod with Arok Wolvengrey, for indigenous language studies. The Highly Sensitive Person by Elaine N. Aron, Ph. D for psychological self-awareness and ability to get along with others.
Elizabeth May on an "Age of Consequences":
From Regina: a story about the consequences of not properly funding the details of international justice...within Canada. (No, I did not make a mistake using "international". There is at least one treaty involved here.)
David Brin asks - and is not alone in asking - when did optimism become Uncool?
Pete Evans at CBC News gets to the heart of the dispute between Canada Post Corp. and the Canadian Union of Postal Workers: the need of workers to avoid starvation in retirement. Even if Evans doesn't frame it with that language.
Also, we note Jason Kenney's quest to save Alberta from civilization. (This is not Mr. Kenney's POV about his goals, to be sure. But as Stephen Colbert once noted, reality does have a certain bias about these matters.)
Congratulations to NASA's Juno team for getting their probe into Jovian orbit yesterday. I won't call what you did "conquering" Jupiter, mind you, because of colonial-mindedness in the undertones of that. But what you did is a positive achievement!
Anyway, Perry Bellegarde, National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, has put forward a challenge to the country. An intellectual, financial and logistical challenge.
We ought to rise to that challenge as best we can. It's going to take a few decades, yes. It'll be worth the effort.
To Chief Superintendant Russ Mirasty:
Or perhaps, rather - hoping I researched correctly here...?