Monday, November 21, 2011

Occupy Newark community organizing



SALUT Occupy Newark!
Went to the organizing activity on Saturday, 19 November, 2011. Maybe up to 50 people there, seemed very Newark/NJ like.. appreciated the diversity of peoples. Not the usual overwhelmingly young NYC white lefties although some and they seemed to be the visible organizers. I felt very at peace and welcome. Looked through the library, perused the fliers, got several silkscreen "I am the 99%". One of the general assembly members and I spoke about my doing some sort of teach-in due to my adjunct college professor life of 20 years. I remembered the compassion tent at Occupy Wall Street and thought of a caring space. Made a poster and sat in a chair. Spoke with a number of attendees about various things primarily politics in Newark. Waved to one of my neighbors out riding his bicylce, greeted Newark Council Member Crump who had come in solidarity. All in all really felt good being appreciated and asked to do some sort of action. Felt lots of curiousity and peace within the event! Bravo Newark for showing how an organizing event can be done!

Monday, October 17, 2011

re: bigots in Union NJ

So pleased Garden State Equality is standing up to "Christian" bigots in Union, NJ. These haters are out of control.
A 2008 email to then Mayor Ron Oden in Palm Springs about a "Christian" conference. Mayor Oden had been a chaplain prior to running for office. A great guy and Christian.
Dear Mayor Oden:
Thank you for showing courage and tolerance in greeting the recent Christian meeting in Palm Springs. I have only read press pieces but I trust your judgement in your actions.
I am certainly no friend of anti-gay thinkers. As a part time college professor, I certainly know that research does not support anti-gay thinking. As a social worker, I have worked with enough suffering to understand the problems of homophobia, stigma and so-called "sin" (I was a social worker in the second largest HIV program in the US, and have worked with gay/lesbian young people in NYC and NJ). Lastly, I attend (sometimes) a local Episcopal church with a gay pastor and inclusion of all people (a really nice group with a "white" Pastor and predominately Afro-American and/or Caribbean congregants).
I believe that you greeted the group in that spirit of inclusion of all peoples even though some have issues, but perhaps hearts can be changed. I emailed you awhile ago about white supremacist gay groups meeting in Palm Springs. You certainly showed no hesistancy in looking into that. I think you know the difference between groups that promote hate and those that perhaps one can fellowship with and change hearts and minds. And, if attendees did not, I think you showed courage in welcoming them in a spirit of inclusiveness.
Congratulations on taking a stand. Sorry, I couldn't have voted for you in the last primary. Best wishes

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Solidarity with "Occupy Wall Street"

wrote a buddy who is now a Cali bank president about the Citibank event today. Def OWS supporter on Wall Street but ...

Thought of your management with the big talk about the Occupy Wall Street event at Citibank, NYC today.
I used to know the branch managers, did events there. Dunno how the managers could have not worked with the protesters, but obviously need some engagement skills need to be set up. I know many of the Occupy supporters as a social worker and academic. Certainly a lot to demonstrate about, but people have to vote. Thank you for your past support of Senator Dodd!
I am sure New York City could have used you today but all the best in SF, I know my SF buddies are busy organizing events. Great social action! LOL, people usually leave Newark although that is changing!

grateful for the love of my friends

Awe, grateful for my friends! Sent this pastel to my best friend for his birthday. He thought I did it for him and framed it. LOL.. love you! Told him though that it was #66 of 92 I made this summer. I have so many drawings from over 36 years, I forget the magic! I just love the colours, form and spirit.



Art in da magical summer 2011! #66of 92, pastel, telling a story, Newark NJ; 21 Aout 2011. Saying goodbye to the young adults leaving for college today! All the Best!!
summer of 2011 magical love, Newark NJ, creating some vision everyday! (primarily under 5minute pastels) I love colour!

OF COURSE, another bestest friend I have known over 30 years got a 8x10inch pastel for her birthday. I finally asked her if she liked my birthday card. She said it was OK but she had better ones from me! i love my Dean friend in adventures!
#15 of 92, machines of the corner market, June 30, 2011, Newark NJ

Monday, October 10, 2011

RIP Eda Goldstein

RIP Eda Goldstein! Re-reading "Ego Psychology and Social Work Practice", 1995. A brilliant seminal text and paradigm. Amazing writing of case studies. She definitely had major impact as a theorist. She was also a girl who could party!

Of course, I have no idea to the context nor reason, and it was summer in one of the 10 richest towns in the USA, and all women. A friend shared stories of Eda and a friend topless in the Hamptons. Def a European-inspired woman! I loved to say hello to her at social work events. She had no clue I knew the stories, but I always thought what a fun person. What a contrast to the boors when I think of the clinicians who are "all that" with their officiousness and hocus pocus jabber!

Dr. Goldstein def was da big BOSS in social work and I loved her for being a real mensch! Always to be missed and remembered, and reading her writings! I wish I could have given her a big hug!

http://www.nyu.edu/socialwork/news/79378

Monday, October 3, 2011

RIP Susan Mills, former United Nations CFO



http://www.peckandpeck.net/feenstra.htm

1990, February photo at surprise party for a friend. Susan Mills, then UN CFO, one of the most powerful women in the world at the time, with husband.

RIP Susan Aug 2011. A year has now passed (sept 2012) and I could write a book about Susan Mills. She axed my optioning for a job at the UN in 1993. I knew all about her personal life and def she protected herself. The UN is an arena! I met with HR people, discussed salary and posting. I then got the fastest rejection letter. I later found out she had visited with the interviewers. Anyhow, She always argued with me and of course she always had to be da boss. Well, I could be posted in a malaria infested place or dead in one of the ambushes against UN people.

I am just surprised that there were no real memorials for her in her passing considering her power. I can only think what is a life. Perhaps her husband will leave more of a living legacy in her name in lieu of the huge rural mansion she erected and now almost empty. She did leave funds for several organizations. She was quite a dynamic lady so it is weird to know she is now dead. She was such a booster for the ideals of the United Nations at least! da stories of life!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

50something jahre birthday 2 October 2012



The highlight of my 2011 birthday is probably my phone convo with Dad (who will be age 85 in December)! Talking, I thought whoa I have a whole lifetime until I reach his age. I have my history, his, as well as ideas on the future! Dad and I chatted about him being my age today! He was thinking of retirement and of course living with his wife, my Mom. He has survived her almost 5 years now! He is alert, asked me good questions, sounds great!

A sister cellphoned me from their lunch on her visit to him in rural NJ. thank you! I am grateful to the universe to hear Dad tell me he loves me, the first of his nine children. Photo of him holding me some 50something years ago!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Rosh Hashanah 5772/2011 events!

"God Hates Fags" poster carrying ChristianDominionist"Jews"/rapturers going to LGBT events in South Carolina, I read in an rss feed, today. Oy! Four of my building ones looking all determined today! Their plan was to pass out anti-christ and jews for jesus pamphlets today, start of rosh hashana. Of course, to pass out in NJ. Security will not allow them to pass out at Temple Emmanuel, Central, in NYC! Interesting they dont pass out anti- Muslim tracts in the building. No surprise when it happens! My sister had a book on the faiths of our Founding Fathers for Dad. I took it as her attempt to make our Dad think beyond the Catholic Church is futile at his age 85.Whoa atheists among them! Who wrote the text in my link.

As ever my ex-Dean pal reminded me of her RoshHashanah story. Her most despised administrator (him only with a state college BA running grad school programs) married a very wealthy professor. The academic would cry to her about having to hide being a lesbian, find a husband or lose her wealth! oy. another "expert" on trafficked women and domestic abuse! Dunno his real story but dumping his wife and kids meant a big pew at a power synagogue where the publically "so in love couple" walk hand-in-hand! True Marcus Bachmann! "Pray the Gay away" or "Pay the Gay away" or just too big sadistic liars? Small minded selfish petty people actually albeit they got big budgets to work with! I always say.. compassion is oft so lacking in social work with the at all costs careerism.

My friend's Rosh Hashanah story so bothers me. Not the duplicitness or lack of morals but the behavior is so discordant with 90% of Jews I have known. I went to social work school because I had such admiration for two of my mentors, both Brooklyn Jewish kids! And I initially forgot my third, a former CPUSA activist, orphaned and raised in New Mexico! Of course I have also known so many remarkable Muslims in a Western world of Islamphobia! (Of course da Catholic and Buddhist nuns rule! So many admired West Indian Anglican preachers, Dutch humanists.....)

OMG, I forgot my favorite Hunter College SSocial Work grad, former CPUSA member, stalwart of the Jane Addams founded International Women's League for Peace and Freedom, who worked in a Jewish Child Care program. An orphan raised in New Mexico! My demonstration going pal!

Fortunately always compassionate wise people living in our midsts

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Christian Dominionists and AIDS

oy today my building's Christian Dominionist rapture wannabees leaving pamphlets on "what would you do if Jesus knocked on the door?" No doubt, I would go on psych meds as I would be hallucinating! I have been blessed! I always remember sitting with over a thousand AIDS patients as they died. At times, the nun, a nurse and I oft only there. Many of the deserted had lovely "Christian" families too embarrassed, bourg, or caught up in their own salvation. Who would really want to spend eternity with people like that? The universe allowed me to have glimpses into the meaning of others. I have zero doubt these "sinners" had angels cradling them!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Remembering response to AIDS 1983 to 2011

November 1983. The first conference in "meeting the challenge of AIDS" sponsors included Hunter College School of Social Work. Year 2 of the epidemic. TY Hunter for being the first social work school to be involved in the professional and community response. (My alum school was in major "homosexual panic" and denial). Love the paradigm shifts I have seen in 30 years although always endless need to advocate, organize and respond. Sadly, I see so many of the sponsors are now dead from the virus. RIP

Names Project AIDS quilt at today's San Diego AIDS Walk, 23 September 2011! Quilts displayed at several AIDS Walks around the world today! The most amazing textile art movement in the late 20th century, and a major community organizing project in our world to remember.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Thirty years social work.. September 1981


1981, September. From 1981-82, was elected the Columbia University School of Social Work Student "Newsletter Editor". This month I have been emailing with another grad who was the best collaborator 30 years ago! She is now a social work professor. I am sending her duplicate originals that I still have. So happy to have her to send along!!

Thirty years ago! Such paradigm shifts but I also see longstanding social work interests. Each month sections such as: legislative alerts, viewpoints, student caucus news, job info, resources, calendar! These are nuts/bolts in student life today. Legislative alerts, viewpoints, resources are critical in social work practice. Case to cause!

Thirty years ago, I see we were writing about Reagan... ugh, and "return to the Dark Ages". Very perceptive in light of the 30 years to that ideology resulting in the GOP nihilists of today.

Wow a lifetime of social work, Columbia, knowing wonderful committed people! I am grateful!

review Sophie Scholl: the Final Days

The film continues the ouevre of revisionist films that fantasize the Deutsch Volk opposition in National Socialist Germany. The story is real but the manipulation of images is to make Germans feel good about a horrific past. I kept thinking of the dissonance with the diaries of Walter Klemperer, the Nazi fanaticism in his university, his jail time, and recording the daily solidarity of Germans with Hitler into 1945.

The history of the White Rose could be brilliant with the critical thinking of say a Fassbinder, Edgar Reitz, or Wim Wenders. The film makes history feel good for those in Triberg, Flensburg, Passau who reconcile the kindly opa who did his duty in the Gestapo and genocide in the heimat.

On a petty level, Sophie's jam on da bread in jail looks better than what I am eating today in 2011 USA. Her bed is so fluffy! No rats, no filthy toilet. In reality, Sophie went to court with a broken leg from the torture. The film makes the polite Gestapo make NYC police officers look even thuggier. I felt the memory of Anne Frank betrayed with those longing looks at the sky! The film is kitschy but complete revisionism in its work. Amazing that Germany submitted this for an Oscar!

I have been to every Lander. It is amazing to see white German reactions when 2 or more Black folks get together! The film does not fit with my lenses. Perhaps I have known too many Jewish refugees, contemporary German exiles, Turks living in Germany, or Americans who have lived in Germany. I am an Auslander, and really do not value normative Deutsch mentalite. I love Munich but it is not Paris, London nor New York with a vibrant diversity of peoples as well as histories.

Is the film good for domestic German TV.. yes! Is it art or critical thinking.. no. The gemeinshaft was suffocating! Forgive the filmmaker Sophie! I think the filmmaker would make a great story of the lives of Marianne Hoppe and Gustav Grundgens, perhaps the ultimate Deutsch film couple!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Continuing their Legacies, those dead from AIDS

Emails on Newark Museum quilt show ignoring the Names Project, the most significant textile and community art project of the late 20th century. Appalling in Newark, NJ, home to the first hospital program for kids with AIDS; 2nd largest provider of hospital services to people with AIDS in US. I know at least 35 people in my building dead of AIDS in the past decade. Museums may have teaparties but a punch in the face to the legacy of those who died in the face of hate. We all have their legacies

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Remembering WTC on 9/11, ten years later







Images of the WTC from 1976




Before the WTC 9/11 days

For most of my life 9/11 is the day my maternal grandfather died in 1965 at only age 61 (b.1904), in Chicago IL. The wonders of modern medicine would have kept him alive today, but he died of complications from a stroke in the 1950s. I remember circumstances around his death such as the funeral home, relatives. He is here with his daughter, my Mom on her wedding day in 1952. My grandfather was a pipefitter, yet he was dead before the WTC. I dunno know if he ever got to New York City in his life. My grandmother stayed in their apartment at 5225 West LeMoyne, Chicago. They had moved there on their return from California in 1963 or 64 until about 1984, when she became ill. For many years I have a recurring dream wandering around their neighborhood. However, I looked at photos online of the building and neighborhood today. The photos bear no resemblance to my dream images. The images seem more akin to the area of my Mom's maternal grandmother.. Addison and Kedvale, Chicago. Memories. RIP and always love for you!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Post Labor day "summer" fast pastels




Rainyday fast sketchs in da building store.. #90, 91 and #92.
#90 Los Arboles.. loved looking and sketching the shapes and colours in those trees this summer! Newark can be so lush.. certainly Branch Brook Park!

#91 Rain.. started with a fast sketch of a woman walking but couldnt figure out how to finish. She reminded me of my talk with a neighbor about the harrassment of Muslim women at an amusement park recently.. being denied rides if one wore the hajib. Dunno but outrageous harrassment, certainly a host of law suits to come. Maybe the drawing is just an angel...

#92 Remembering 2001. Somehow the work reminded me of the monolith in Kubrick's Space Odyssey 2001, and then the realization that 2001 was also the tenth anniversary of 9/11/01. Our new world reality, post 9/11.
Finally thought about the ending to the summer drawings now that it is post LaborDay. Looking for a regular social work opportunity (will teach part time). I also need to be around more social workers as the current political climate is so outrageous. Amazing that the Republican nihilists are so intent on getting rid of our first AfricanAmerican President, roll back social rights, and destroy the economy for the enrichment of the oligarchs.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Jack Benny, Eddie "Rochester" Anderson


Found an autograph of both Rochester and Jack Benny on the same paper (a Waldorf Astoria card). My Aunt Agnes and Uncle Ed routinely went to corporate sponsored dinners in NYC and around the country for his job in advertising. Amazing social history...

"Gaily, Jack Benny"

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Summer email postcards/photos



This summer, a host of auto tour emails of sites in Utah, Colorado from a Cali buddy.

Now, snapshots as he visits his parents (now in their 80s) in Memphis.
Love the baby boy photos from 1960/61 Huntsville, Alabama!

Especially love him and his baby bottle but it is not uploading right, but I posted.

awwww!

"Queen Mary" and "Princess of Canada" 1950s cruise story


Happy Birthday to my Aunt Agnes, born September 3, deceased in the 1980s. The photo of her and my Uncle Ed on the "Empress of Canada" in the 1950s. An amazing ocean liner from what I have read online. Have to investigate more and add!! I also posted the passenger list of a Cunard trip they sailed.

The ship was originally named Empress of Japan but renamed upon WW2.

The Queen Mary first class passenger list is amazing social history. All the Mr and Mrs with no female name. Master this and that young guy. Mrs. x with maid. The Sirs, Ladyships, Lordships.

RIP the loved Aunt Agnes (and Uncle Ed). They lived at 2 Fifth Avenue, NYC, during the time of their cruises. My Mom spent most of her childhood summers staying with them, mostly on the UES when they lived off 5th in the East 80s.

My sense is that the Empress cruise took place after my Uncle retired in the spring of 1954, so probably 1954-58. In 1958, they sailed on the Queen Mary. 1958 was a big year as my GreatGrandMother died. And, my aunt/uncle donated the construction of Owens Hall, Our Lady of the Woods College, outside Terre Haute, Indiana. His sister was the Mother Superior.

Sent photos to my Uncle in Southern California (The last living brother of my deceased Mom). He and my Aunt go on at least a cruise a year. Waiting to hear his reaction to the photos.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Colours fantastique



More summer fast sketches!

#48 pastel; Love, Newark NJ; 2 Aout 2011. colours fantastique! Thoughts for my neighbor talking about his wife in the ER, their son upstairs with the babysitter. Hoping all turns out well! Always enjoy the tales of their family! Sometimes run into them strolling about midtown!

and to the right:

#47 pastel; Aout2, Newark NJ; 2 Aout 2011. colours fantastique. I would name it "Daphne's wings" for my neighbor who sat next to me whilst I drew... inspiring me.. but I name signed it already.

An inspiring day talking with 5 other neighbors.. stopping by to see what I am drawing today! Priceless! Thanks much!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

mid july thoughts


perfect swim day! hoy hablando con mi vecinos, comiendo comida Espanol, cada dia un nueva experiencia en la playa Newark! Soy allegro con este Juli! Today the muscle guys were grabbing at me.. damn this one-legged guy had the grip of a super wrench! I am oft the big guy but he could have just tossed me the length of da pool!
2011 Santa Barbara 19 July; Santa Dominga 20 July; Newark pastels. #34, #35. my Yoruba African priest neighbor is moving.. one of da best neighbors for 11 years+. Not the African deities invoked but somehow my fast drawings took on images/faces of Chango et Obtala.

the basketball tourney is playing excellent Michael Jackson music pre-game and breaks tonight! Damn nothing like music in da hood these hot sweaty nights!

Friday, July 15, 2011

happy Birthday Walter Benjamin

Happy Birthday Walter Benjamin! one of the major intellectual influences to my being! the epistemology, montage, paradigms.. his writings with Gershom Scholem, Georges Bataille, Bertolt Brecht. I so love the Passagenwerk.. Paris Arcades! I am forever obsessed with his visions, and probably just the romance of his life.. Paris, Berlin.. to the never forgetting of his dreadful death fleeing the Gestapo.



2011, 15 juli, Newark NJ; summer girls, pastel #29; Boyz sit, pastel #30.
Da young ladies & gents sitting at separate picnik tables today... we older people all commented.. maybe the Full Buck Moon this gorgeous Newark summer afternoon!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Sparks of the divine


2011, 13 Juli; Newark NJ; sparks of the divine; pastel; #28.

Turned out lights and put colours to paper to capture the gorgeous forms/colours/spirit in the vista from my apartment window. Newark is sometimes just so damn gorgeous.. tonight made me think of divine beauty. Also thoughts of Walter Benjamin as almost his birthday!

Trees of Life


"Trees of Life": 2011, 12 Juli; Newark NJ; pastel; #27 in my 2011 ete drawing series.
Sat to draw next to a Christian cult missionary who was opinionated and bossy as usual, an oft evil nature, at first. Decided to really focus on creativity and positives... the result a "Trees of Life".
Later thinking of Walter Benjamin and "sparks of life". I searched in my Scholem Kabbalah text and found text on the inherent goodness in the tree of life! A juxtaposition as well as synchronicity? Dunno. Not that I am trying to draw good but I am focused on the creative in all work that I do.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Salut South Sudan


Delighted to see the celebrations surrounding the birth of South Sudan on 9 July 2011! Big congrats to the many advocates, particularly Ruth Messinger and the American Jewish progressive community!
Watching CNN and did a fast sketch. Saw the map of South Sudan for only a flash but drew what I felt about the country! (looks like a brain.... hopefully a place for good ideas to prosper!!!)

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Happy Birthday Marilyn!


Always remember 3 birthdays: Marilyn, the birthday of my favorite Aunt Marge, and one of my former Newark now in da Bronx neighbors!

1958 photo: left to right: my Dad and Mom, Uncle Gill.. Aunt Marge... Uncle Ed. Some celebratory event.. in the Boulevard Room, Chicago Hilton.

Love that my aunt shares the birthday of Marilyn Monroe! My aunt was a stylish lady. I think a bit of a polyamorous one as well as there were always a few men around!

My Aunt doted on me.. def a perfect Aunt. Bringing me for ice cream in Park Ridge, IL, or out to eat somewheres. A high school buddy reminds me that I stayed in her house when I had mono. Memorial Day always a reminder of her as my siblings and I would sit on her porch to watch a parade go by in NorthWest Chicago near to Park Ridge. Always miss my Aunt who died young, age 56, in 1975.

Friday, March 25, 2011

"O Tell Me the Truth About Love" by W.H. Auden