cultivating & crashing

an organic collection of notes, observations, and thoughts

Category: unsorted

I Am Not Your Negro

From an email

I am in a dark mood today. I am thinking of how easy it is for me as an employed, educated, first world, white skinned person to pass through this life worrying about why I am not more mellow and content with life. I am thinking about how that is a privilege that most people on earth do not have, including very many people I see every single day. I think about how silly it is to be so blind to the reality of what is going on to the people we are friends with, much less the people we will never even know. To think of what it must feel like to know that you are just not as valuable to the world as others for some arbitrary, bizzare reason, and how much energy must go into both overcoming that disadvantage and keeping that rage from destroying you and your family. And here I am, worrying about why I can’t concentrate on my work and how I will manage to save up enough money to pay off my student loans faster so I can start to put money aside so that my future family will have what others cannot dream of having.

Now that I am putting in question many assumptions in my life, next I could start thinking about what I would like for my life’s work to be and how to go about doing it.


v de vino tinto

Georges Duboeuf Brouilly

Robertson Winery Chemin Blanc
Villa Maria Marlborough

cosas que me gustaría estudiar

un instrumento

tengo casi 30 años y finalmente tengo ganas de estudiar.

Human history

Human history … a race between education and catastrophe.
H.G. Wells

El año viejo


Went to a concert last night at le Cabaret Lion d’Or last night where I saw some fantastic music of wildly different styles in Spanish, French, Creole, Korean, Inuktitut, and English.

I was blown away by each of the groups. I loved the beautiful singing and hybrid mariachi-rock music of Mariachi Ghost. Stella Gonis killed us with her voice, rhythm, and dancing. Coreyah is what I strongly suspect the Gogol Bordello of Korea and just plain COOL. The Jerry Cans were an infectious mix of traditional Canadian music sung in Inuktitut, accompanied with throat singing. And to finish off, Betty Bonifassi (whom I recognized from her vocals on DJ Champion’s Chill ’em all) sang her take on chain gang songs collected in 1950s US South by Alan Lomax.

The Mariachi Ghost (Mexico, Winnipeg)
Stella Gonis (Martinique)
Coreyah (Corea)
The Jerry Cans (Iqualuit)
Betty Bonifassi (Montreal’s own)

I have now decided to update my unrealistic of reading one book from every country in the world to instead listening to music from every country in the world. The books can maybe be a lifetime goal. Now I will have a good use for Every Noise at Once! Stay tuned for an upcoming listening party.

Paredes pintadas


Second Person Singular

shadi jamil
sabah fakhri
egyptian pop
amr diyab
umm kulthum’s enta omri


Today I learned

how to make a boring but neat flowchart in Word. And this, too, was progress.

First sighting of WinBUGS in the wild