It's been two years since I first found one of the most terrifying and bizarre stories I'd ever read or heard about. Everyone who follows my twitter feed knows that I'm a sucker for bizarre articles, but when I found a link appear in my newsfeed to Tanzania's Albino Genocide, I was immediately dumbstruck.
I don't know what inspired me to make a lovehatethings post out of it, but, in retrospect, the topic held some gravitas. To date, that initial post has been read over 23,000 times, and I've received numerous emails and comments about it. I've since maintained a bit of a watch on the subject of albinos in Burundi and Tanzania being slaughtered and dissected for parts because some witch doctors believe it is magic.
I still shake my head to this day.
I am not an albino, nor have I ever been to Tanzania or Burundi, nor do I have ANY tie whatsoever to the cultures involved suffice to say this: the human race is fucked up beyond belief when I'm still reading about ANY nine year-old being dismembered for ANY reason whatsoever.
This blog is often about pop culture minutiae and mindless drivel that sustains me from one day to the next. I am often loathe to be too serious, lest someone take me for someone who really gives a damn about hair care products, cereal boxes, Steve Jobs' foibles, or some new cool tilt-shift video clip from Vimeo.
I am not often moved to violence, more prone to expressions of disbelief and frustration, so perhaps Bruce Cockburn best expresses what I'm thinking when I keep hearing stories like this for the ongoing lifetime of this blog. And perhaps, out of all the things I've claimed to hate, they all pale in comparison to this.
I want to raise every voice -- at least I've got to try.
Every time I think about it water rises to my eyes.
Situation desperate, echoes of the victims cry.
If I had a rocket launcher... Some son of a bitch would die.
photolink courtesy www.ctv.ca
Perhaps one of the easiest songs to remember from childhood, and one of the easiest to sing and play (it's only three different notes to perform a simplified version of the classic children's song). Written by Sarah Josepha Hale in 1830, the rhyme was quickly put to music later in the decade by Lowell Mason who added repetition.
The original is a simple tale of co-dependency and a deep-seeded introverted child who is doomed to run a motel under the lingering presence of her deranged father:
Mary had a little lamb, whose fleece was white as snow.
And everywhere that Mary went, the lamb was sure to go.
It followed her to school one day, which was against the rules.
It made the children laugh and play, to see a lamb at school.
And so the teacher turned it out, but still it lingered near,
And waited patiently about, till Mary did appear.
"Why does the lamb love Mary so?" the eager children cry.
"Why, Mary loves the lamb, you know," the teacher did reply.
Regardless of theme and the faux "tradition" of calling it a lilting children's rhyme, musicians have taken to the lyrics like nobody's business... except maybe yours... check them out.
Take a moment to think about the love that people had for Jim Henson and remember some of the characters he brought into the world while enjoying the next couple of video clips. It's been 19 years since Jim Henson died and I remember his characters more affectionately than almost any character from a film or novel. These voices were laced with innocence and inspired fantasies and awestruck countenances.
You know what? I've given up on Saturday Night Live for my parody and satire. I'm turning to Sesame Street from now on. Sure it may be skewed to children, but at least I expect it. SNL, who should be trying to skew towards me, ends up hitting the lowest common denominator which is far below children and, most often, insulting. If you're a fan of Mad Men - enjoy!
A wicked retro trip back to Saturday morning in the 70s. The Krofft Supershow had a host of cheesy parts that made up the epic entertainment experience, but perhaps the cheesiest was Electra Woman and Dyna Girl. And as the post title indicates, in this clip they follow the Sorcerer who's bent on traveling through time to steal the Mona Lisa from Leonardo Da Vinci.
Start digging on the wrist communicators - you KNOW you want one!