340 meters per second

Trust only movement. Life happens at the level of events, not of words. Trust movement.

&mdash Alfred Adler (1870-1937)

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Depths of the past, heights of the future.

Yesterday may have been a bit of a cop-out (posting other people's articles without adding any commentary of my own), but things remain busy at work. In fact, I'm going to do much the same today, though I may embroider a bit.

* * *

one. Darth Klein apparently shrugged off the intellectual coma he's been in for the last few years and decided to cop to reality. The Globe & Mail front-page article "Klein signals truce over gay marriage" can be found here.

* * *

deux. First things fuckin last. To the guy on the #24 bus this morning: she will not be impressed by your erudition and profound grasp of foreign affairs if you insist on pronouncing it sray-brun-EE-ka. It's SREBB-renn-its-a, you arrogant boor. If Lloyd 'Gin Blossom' Robertson can get it right then so can you.

Self-righteous mockery is about the only way I can open this blurb, so forgive the pretension. This week is the ten-year... well, 'anniversary' seems like a wildly inappropriate word, so let's just say it's been ten years since the UN finally decided it had a reason to move into the former Yugoslavia. The Globe & Mail had an insightful editorial and for once, most of the major Canadian news outlets (the Citizen, La Presse, etc.) had reasonably decent coverage.

What I find most troubling--though not surprising, I suppose--is the deeply-embedded reluctance among Serbs to seriously address the massacre. Despite the emergence of a snuff film which clearly and undeniably documents part of the slaughter, many Serbs continue to deny that the killings ever occurred. Since early June, Serbian television stations have been broadcasting the tape constantly and yet there's still no national dialogue being created within Serbia.

Again, I'm not really surprised: it took decades for the Germans to seriously examine their (our?) own history and the Vatican has only recently begun accepting criticisms of its role in the Holocaust. And NATO nations, who knew long before Srebrenica that "ethnic cleansing" (a neologism I could do without) was taking place, still need to take a good look at their own complicity.

Re-reading the above paragraphs, I realize that I'm not adding anything to the discussion at all. Worse, I'm straying dangerously close to high-and-mighty finger-pointing. Perhaps I should wait until a little time has passed and the term "8,000 Muslims" has faded from the front pages before I venture any further commentary.

* * *

drei. On a way, WAY happier note--Danny Way is my hero for this week.

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - California skateboarder Danny Way jumped over a 61-foot (18.6-meter) gap in the Great Wall of China, becoming the first person to clear the ancient fortification without motorized aid, his sponsor said.

Way then went on to jump the wall three more times on Saturday, taking off from a specially built ramp at the nearly 3,000-year-old Ju Yong Guan Gate, and adding in 360-degree spins as spectators looked on.

Maybe it's just me, maybe I'm a sucker for images of flying people and velocity, speed, freedom from the tyranny of gravity... but there's something incredibly moving (no pun intended) about these images and the accompanying video.

(Don't worry, the link will not automatically launch a viewer--it takes you to the Reuters page carrying the story. From there you can view the video if you like. I suggest that you do.)

Even With the Quiksilver sponsorship and the cheesy hype and the BS corporate quotes and the cheapening of a World Wonder and the dangerously foreboding symbolism of mass-market American claptrap crapitalism livin' large in China... even with all that, I find myself thinking about Danny Way and his three-second apotheosis and feeling good. I think about Danica Patrick, Steve Robinson, Jim Kelly, Andy Thomas, Wendy Lawrence, Charlie Camarda, Eileen Collins and Soichi Noguchi. Maybe that makes me a sucker for the shill.

I can live with that.

Trust only movement. Life happens at the level
of events, not of words. Trust movement.

- Alfred Adler


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