Wednesday, September 22, 2004


i just got my first radio commercial series voice-over gig in more than five years and i get to play a particular leader of the free world known by a letter at the end of the alphabet.

if my father were alive, i know he would have a good chuckle about it.

Don't let the Cat in

Yusuf Islam (the artist formerly known as Cat Stevens) was recently denied entry to the US because of his alleged connections to terror groups despite him being a well known moderate Muslim (as long as you don't count the supporting of the fatwah on Salman Rushdie). One has to wonder if this is caution being taken to the level of paranoia.

I'm all for making sure people don't commit terrorist acts, but it's not so clear as to be able to condemn one specific group just because the media emphasizes the religious fanatics amongst it. I mean, Christianity would come off just as bad if not worse if we looked at the wars and destruction done in it's name. It's the religious fanaticism and lust for political power that are the real enemies, and these "evils" are not confined to one race or religious preference.

A "war on terror" is only going to perpetuate a dualistic warring mentality: us and them, friend or foe. I think Jesus came to take away that mentality. I find it ironic that the political right in the US portrays itself as embodying good Christian values.

Monday, September 20, 2004

British Diplomat Gaffe

I found it amusing that someone leaked a comment from a British dipolomat that terror groups would rather have Bush in the Whitehouse than Kerry.

Although the current US administration would have the world believe it would be safer with it in power after the next election, one does have to mention that the current polarised situation was created by the current administration...

Sunday, September 19, 2004

Shihad spits the dummy

i was encouraged today when i read that the NZ rock band formally known as Shihad (pronounced 'she-had') and presently known as Pacifier has decided to revert to it's previous name. the main reason they changed their name in the first place was due to the post 9/11 mentality and similarity of their name to the word 'jihad". their motivation was to be able to sell albums in the USA.

on their website, the band members state:

"The events surrounding the name change and our choice to be known as Pacifier are well documented. As much as we believed in what we were doing, and the reasons for doing it at the time - the truth is we were wrong. "

to me the reversion to their previous name signals that the world is waking up from the madness of conformity to the conservative social norm created by 9/11. the first casualty of a semi-militarised state is freedom of expression and dissent. i hope that with greater experience of the dubious nature of political truths and narrowminded agendas, people won't be duped or controlled to the same extent in the future.

i'm off my soapbox now. time to smell some roses...

Something from the beat days

this poem tapped me on the shoulder unasked this morning as i was waiting for the green orbiter bus to arrive.

i wrote it more than three years ago when i was reading a lot of beat poetry. it happened one morning when i was getting dressed. suddenly the first two lines popped into my head. i had to stop buttoning my shirt and write them down. then the next lines came. i was able to finish getting dressed eventually and hop in the car to work, but the poem kept coming. i held an old receipt on my steering wheel and scrawled the lines on it with a pen as i drove. when i got to work, i quickly typed it all up and this is what came out. mind you, the editor in me came out eventually and made a couple of minor tweaks and changes, but this is mainly the product of inspiration which i was fortunate enough to get out of the way of and just let happen.

in some respects, i didn't write the poem so much as just write it down...

It Is What It Is

Infamy, the last of me,
Simpleton logic in Zen-like trances,
Dances of the mind-ballet,
Steps, hopes, long pregnant stares
Past the rows of chairs into the foyer
Burst through the double door of brain lock habit thought
From naught to ought in commercialesque prose.

Don't alienate,
Incorporate bland commonality
So it sparks energy, heart-life squeezes.
Please the knees of the march men,
The beat song, the sweet song
Hoarse with enthusiasm, applause,
Cause and effect.
Reject the spiderstep entry.
Speak your mind, brother!
Decline the whine to line the stacks and spines
Of whines that line the stacks
Backed in rows for your perusal,
Refusal to bow down to the push of apathy
Sympathy to the word sinews
The mouth thews of utterance
Spewed in elegant soliloquy.

Salivate the wait state.
Hate the silence,
Love the rhythm schism
Syllables split
Ground down into primal motion, emotion, motivation,
Exhalations of me on the windowpane of the morning bus ride
That divides my prehistory.

So you ask me of poetry?
And the answer is.