theleaveswant: text; "those who can, do. those who can't, run this fucking place" (politics)
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PSA

( Oct. 26th, 2015 02:40 am)
I tried to write this in a comment on one of [personal profile] recessional's (otherwise totally on-point) posts on election day but I accidentally backpaged or something and firefox ate it, so trying again:


Do not spoil your ballot in a Canadian federal election.


Election rules change all the time so this may not always be the case, but under the current framework it is a futile action and accomplishes absolutely nothing. Trust me, I was a deputy returning officer on Monday and have been a DRO or a poll clerk in almost every federal or applicable provincial election since 2003 (Manitoba until '08, Ontario since): you're wasting your own time.


Elections Ontario at least has a category for declined ballots, which is when you receive your ballot and return it to the DRO saying "I do not want to vote for any of these weevils". I don't know how much weight that carries, I suspect "roughly equivalent to a flake of dandruff" unless they get a LOT of them in a single election, but there is a recognized place for protest voting (or protest not-voting). Elections Canada has no such provision.

A true spoiled ballot, per EC terminology, is a ballot that is returned to the DRO rather than being placed in the ballot box. EC, unlike EO, makes no distinction between ballots handed back in protest and those returned because the voter messed up and wants to take advantage of their one do-over. These all go into one envelope together and the total number is used to balance the number of ballots issued by the RO with the number of ballots, used and unused, found at the end of the day. That's it. The most recognition a real spoiled ballot will get is an entry with other "notable events of the day" in the poll book (log used to record new registrations, oaths administered, etc.).

Any ballot that makes it into the ballot box that is not clearly marked for a single recognized candidate gets rejected when votes are counted. This includes ballots deposited without marks and ballots with any kind of writing: no write-in candidates (Elections Canada doesn't recognize 'em), no editorial comments. Just like spoiled ballots, no distinction is made between deliberate protests and accidental screw-ups (even assuming the people conducting and observing the count can deduce the intentions of the person submitting a given ballot, which we often can't); rejected ballots go in one envelope and are used to reconcile ballots issued with ballots returned. The most acknowledgment a recognizable protest vote gets is a note on the sheet used for recording stuff like objections from scrutineers at the time of the count. These notes may or may not ever get read and if they do there isn't really anything anybody working for Elections Canada can do about them.



If you want to participate in the election process but don't like any of the candidates in your area? I hate to say it, but on election day at least you're kinda screwed. You have to pick the least of X number of evils, or your vote doesn't count.

In the longer term, if you want something to change (or to resist a suggested change), either take it up with whomever is in office (email, physical mail, phone, social media, showing up to public appearances--you have options) or support the person you want to replace them (or both; both is good). Make sure that you're sending your message to the person at the right level of government to deal with your issue (MP, MPP, city counsellor, etc.), and don't just dump your complaints on elections officials or campaign volunteers because we have no more ability to make stuff happen than you do.


(Also: if you're "strategic voting" or "voting against" a particular party or candidate, do some research on the electoral history of and current trends in your riding to figure out how high the risk of your anti-preference winning actually is and how much leeway you have to vote for who you most want, or least don't-want, vs. who is the safest bet to keep the enemy out. A strong second-place showing tells the party your riding is a smart place to invest resources so they'll have a better shot at taking it next time.)
Why I Don't Like Remembrance Day )

Not an especially subtle or nuanced playlist but neither is all that Canada Remembers propaganda.

row on row )
Damnit are there no reasonably well-known horror movies of the 1980s left that have not yet been remade or sequelified? I feel like The Thing was the last one and that remake was seriously underwhelming (digital Thing, not nearly so squicky--maybe it's scary in 3D?), even with Mary Elizabeth Winstead going all Ripley.

[community profile] ante_up_losers is live! There are about 40 new stories in the exchange and scramble (treat) collections. I ended up finishing my assignment (somehow one of the longest stories I've ever posted, no really how did that happen? and probably never going to be as popular as the one I wrote last year) and four treats for different recipients (all below 1000 words each, mostly nearer the lower end of the rating scale, exhibiting a range of moods and 'ships but mostly talky gen fluff, one crossover that I am maybe not-so-casually considering expanding, to the point of checking [community profile] fandomcalendar for Big Bang events that I could count it towards); you can try to identify them, if you want, before the reveal on Tuesday.

Anyway, continuing from last post, trying vainly to show some fucking restraint damnit, more opinions about media!

Feature Films B: Captain America vs. X-Men First Class, and also Muppets )

Music )

Television Series: Ongoing )

Television Series: Premiering pt 1: Arctic Air )

Television Series: Premiering pt 2: Bomb Girls )

Television Series: Premiering pt 3: House of Lies )

Stay tuned for Festivids recs, if you, y'know, care.
This was supposed to be my More Joy Day post and then my Day After More Joy Day + Snowflake Day 13 post but then I had a fever and the [community profile] ante_up_losers draft deadline jumped around and also Life Is Hard, so I'm only getting to it now. Anyway, here are some of my Opinions about various media objects, some fresh, some stored up, mostly positive, sometimes with caveats and lots of parentheses.

Books )

Documentary )

Feature Films A: Five Excellent Canadian Films That Not Enough People Talk About, Especially in C6D Fandom )

. . . and I'm actually gonna break it there for now (and probably never finish it, knowing me), because this entry is once again much too long, and I have to let it go and move on to Day 14 (ask for help): I need a beta or team thereof! Most urgently for a fic for the Losers exchange that does live on Friday (augh how did this get so long it was supposed to be simple porn and also the ending feels really awkward), and also for some other projects (mostly [community profile] kink_bingo fic and vids at various stages of completion).

At least I'm feeling pretty good about my C6DVD exchange project.
Really quite impressed (and pleased) with how successful this initiative (15 days of fanlove challenges) is so far! Yay Aka & Luce & Ande!

Day 1

In your own space, post a rec for at least three fanworks that you have created. It can be your favorite fanworks that you've created, or fanworks you feel no one ever saw, or fanworks you say would define you as a creator. Drop a link to your post in the comments.


blah blah blah why I don't cross-post much )
Anyway:
1. way more than three fics I am fond or proud of )

2. I am generally pretty smug about my playlist/mix-making skills, so every mix I've posted gets a self-rec, but my particular favourites-of-the-moment are the two most recent ones (If We're Not Horses [due South/Dollhouse] and No Two Snowflakes [BSG]) and General Issue (Life or Death We Want You) [The Losers], and I'm also very proud of parts of the lengthy meta for Empty Lots and Early Graves (Murder Ballad Mix), although I'm kicking myself for forgetting HorrorPops' "Highway" and The Creepshow's "Long Way Down" and "Undead Eyes" when I was making it (they'll have to go on the sequel, along with Die Mannequin's "Dead Honey").

3. I am genuinely disappointed not to have recieved any online feedback on Media Erotometrics, the multi-fandom video installation project I did for a conference in March 2011, so I do want to rec that as a plea for attention. I know it's a commitment to watch (an hour long) and the technical quality is not great (I do plan to produce an improved/updated version using better and more varied video source and better software at some point) but for an absurdly ambitious first vidding project I don't think it's too shabby, and I'm pretty pleased with some of the commentary I worked in (assuming that anyone else reads it the way that I hope they will, of course).


Promotional piggyback! Go offer and bid on stuff at [community profile] scarleteenfans auction raising money to support the sexual health education site. You are particularly welcome to bid on my offers (the usual fanmixes and custom knitting work--no bids yet so you can probably win them cheap cheap cheap) and to outbid me on the offers I've bid on, because I cannot really afford to win them all right now.
Way back in the day (the day of October, before laptop died and had to be replaced), I offered my mix-compiling services in the [livejournal.com profile] helpsomalia auction, and got myself bought up by [livejournal.com profile] karraparis and [personal profile] hazelwho, who each asked for different C6D fandoms, characters, and prompts/premises (well, H gave me options and I chose to go with something different) that (in my head at least) dovetailed rather nicely, thematically. Hence: two separate music mixes, posted together, exploring similar angsty ideas re: confusion, deception, self-doubt and self-destruction, compromised self-integrity and questioning identity, and complicated, maybe unwise, sexual connections. They each come with a little ficlet for context and yes, they both contain songs by two separate Ontario bands/artists with "mannequin" in their names, among other artist overlaps.

Links, covers, prompt details, and track listings behind the cuts.

due South Dollhouse!AU Fraser/Kowalski mix for [livejournal.com profile] karraparis: If We're Not Horses . . . )

Battlestar Galactica (2003) Kara/Leoben mix for [personal profile] hazelwho: No Two Snowflakes )

[personal profile] dragovianknight, I have started working on your writing mix and hope to have something ready for you soon. My apologies for the delay. [livejournal.com profile] podfic_lover, I've been waiting for a quiet day at home to record your stories without much success, but I hope to get to them soon.
Title: I'll Follow You into the Dark
Fandom: Blood Ties
Characters: Vicki Nelson (Vicki/Coreen, Vicki/Henry, Vicki/Mike, Vicki/Henry/Mike)
Kink: sensory deprivation (wildcard)
Summary: Rambly meta speculating on how Vicki's retinitis might affect her play relationships with three of the most significant others in her life (might edit later for improved coherency)
Content notes: No standard warnings apply. Spoilers for the series generally and the pilot specifically.
Rating/wordcount: G/2000ish

cutcutcutcutcutcutcutcut )
Oh, /o\ .

There are so many things I've wanted to post about but haven't allowed myself to sit down and write, and some of them may still get posted evenutally but today there is only one thing I can talk about, because today has gone like this:

*wake up*
*evict cat from comfy perch on my bladder*
*go to the bathroom and have a shower*
*turn on the computer and read about Jack Layton's passing*
*cry forever*

You guuuuuuys I am so sad and so scared and my heart is breaking for all of us but especially for Olivia and his family and then I read the goodbye letter he wrote two days ago and I can't, I just can't. The sun is beaming bright outside but it feels like a mockery. I never met him personally but I know a lot of people here in Ontario who did and who confidently attest that he walked the walk he talked. I'm going to the gathering at City Hall at 4pm if I can manage to stumble my way there through the blur of my tears, and put my hope in the axiom about shared pain etc.

As [personal profile] zingerella said earlier today in another forum, "I've said fairly often that the best friends are the ones who show you your better self--the parts of you that are stronger, braver, more honest, kinder, more generous--and help you to be that person all the time. By that metric, I think Jack Layton was a pretty good friend for a country to have."
So I've been watching Lost Girl, right? And it's still cheesy and ridiculous but mostly, apart from the absurd fat-hate in the second episode, it does a pretty good job of avoiding fail (at least it tries *so hard* that I want to offer it a Milkbone and a scratch behind the ears). In particular, the series' dedication to sex positivity and female sexual agency--manifested in the premise of a female protagonist whose supernatural abilities and, often, survival depend on feeding off others' libidinal energy but who is not reduced to a victim or an addict but who actively enjoys sex and whose choice between a prospective male love interest and a female one was, for as long as the angst-hungry machine of genre TV narrative conventions allowed, "both"--is pretty exceptional. This is why the appalling, and appallingly cliched, kink negativity in last week's episode was not just disappointing but actually surprising. summary of offending incident = spoilers )

This bothers me enough for what it is in itself (a baldly pathologizing sentiment); it bothers me more for what it is in the context of a media meta-narrative (bad guys = perverts & vice versa, lazy storytelling); and it saddens and confuses me because of its program-specific context (Bo is supposed to be such an ambassador for broad sexual appetites, and she suggested a safeword prior to enjoying a raucous one-night-threesome in a previous episode; why is she so down on this? why doesn't she distinguish between what the baddies are doing in the club and consensual SM?). The part that actually rather hurts me, though, is that this time they're not just maligning abstract concepts to which I have an intellectual affiliation. They're doing it to actual, local, human communities that I and many of my friends belong to.

I know Lost Girl doesn't claim to be set in Toronto. The characters have mostly accepted that they're in Canada, I think, after the whole "across the border" execution issue, though the series is still faking up details & aiming for Generic North American City, Unspecified Region, Fictionworld. But come on, who do they think they're fooling? They may not be as explicit as Flashpoint (which, for all that they may have dodged actually using the word "Toronto" until--I think?--the second season finale inside not!Maple Leaf Gardens, never really pretended to be anywhere else: within the first sixteen minutes of the series, we're shown the inside of the Spadina-University subway line, with stop announcements; Timmie's cups; Canada flags, "Metropolitan Police" badges and red trouser stripes; Ontario license plates on familiar EMS vehicles; and, oh yeah, throbbing luminescent cock of our nation, the CN Tower), but the locations are easy for anyone to recognize who knows what they're looking for (like that walk'n'talk down Queen West at the end of the pilot, hello!). Which means that goth club is supposed to be a Toronto goth club (it isn't, not a real one; the interiors are mostly The Opera House with some overstated set decoration and I dunno about the alley), and the shit they're saying about kinky people they're saying about Toronto kinky people.

Now, I'm not saying that all the goths or all the kinksters or all the dwellers of the overlap in this or any city are good and loving people. There are far too many folks who fit those bills for me to vouch for them all personally, and there are certainly some dense and unpleasant specimens in the sub-clusters of people I have actually met. But it does smart more than usual when TPTB aren't thumbing their noses just at people who like the same stuff you like but at you and your friends, more specifically (and maybe I'm spoiled not to have encountered this before, it's never occurred to me to ask people who live in big American cities where ALL THE TV happens). I'm sure it wasn't personal, just another symptom of how much many people think they know about kink and how little they care that there are actually millions of people in the world who do choose to do it and deliciate in it.

I'm not even sure where I'm going with all this tealdeer anymore, except perhaps to put it out there: Hey TV-making people? We're here, we're queer (well, some of us), and we'd be happy to look over your scripts and tell you whether they're bullshit before you hurt us by putting them on all those screens.
We had a test in my copyediting class last week and at the time I thought I did pretty well, but the instructor posted an answer key today and I don't remember answering many of the questions in the way the key indicates . . . I have a tickling feeling that some of these are not the same questions I answered at all, like she posted the key to a slightly different version of the test or something? But I think that is unlikely. I will just have to wait until the end of class tonight to find out how I really did. ETA: tests have not been marked yet, so I still don't know how well I did, but it WAS the wrong answer key, so in that I feel vindicated.

Speaking of failure, the city of Toronto dropped the ball hard last night. According to the CBC, only 53.2% of potential voters actually voted (and that's up from 39% in 2006, ugh, how are so many people so apathetic?), and 47.1% of them voted for the florid windbag.

I shouldn't need to tell you, I'm pretty grievously bummed about this. I'm trying to take comfort in things like knowing that he's only got one vote on the council, and if he never passed a single motion in ten years as a councillor, how much better are his chances now? I'm not cheered up by the fat-bashing. First, the guy has so much going against him (racist, homophobic, anti-immigration, anti-environment, cyclist-hating, wife-beating, drunk-driving, mud-slinging, tantrum-throwing, wannabe–activist-murdering, shit-for-brains, goat-raping* NIMBY liar toad festering like an infected ingrown hair in the ass-crack of the city) . . . is "fat" really the worst thing you can think of to call him? Second, yes, he is fat, we can see that, incorporating it into any of the epithets we use to describe him is really unnecessary. THIRD AND MOST IMPORTANTLY: what does it matter if he is fat? "Fat" is not a moral condition; we should not ever mistake its presence or absence for evidence on which to build a moral judgment. The fact that he is a grotesque parody of a human being has nothing to do with the fact that he is fat. Even the people who say "well, he's fat, he'll probably have a heart attack and die before he gets the chance to do much damage"--I'm sorry, but fuck right off with that noise, size and cardiac health really do not correlate as smoothly as you'd like to imagine. He might be unhealthy, heartwise, and that could have as much or more to do with genetic predisposition or the fact that he is EVIL AND WHOLLY DEVOID OF COMPASSION as it does or doesn't have to do with his BMI.

I'm tentatively okay with names like "Mayor Quimby", "Mayor Double-down", "Mayor Farley" and "Mayor Cartman" because I've heard those all justified with reference to similarities of character beyond coincidences of shape. I have no intention of using any of them myself, but I won't automatically step in when others do. I am not okay with "Fat Fuck", because I don't want to associate two such lovely concepts as "fat" and "fucking" with that kind of reprehensible squawker.



(seriously though, Toronto. This guy? REALLY?)

*citation needed
You know this meme:
1. Reply to this post and I'll assign you a letter.
2. List 5 songs that start with that letter.
3. Post them to your journal with these instructions.

[personal profile] curgoth gave me the letter "T"

I delayed a bit on posting this, given that apparently at least one of the people I didn't realize was still reading my journal(s) thinks I yammer about politics (or particular political issues) far too much. I am willing to have that conversation but not here and not now (yes, passive-aggressive statement is passive-aggressive). For now, this is my journal and I will post what I want and given the situation that I am living just blocks west of, I feel this is plenty appropriate. Here's the Three Times Too Long, Too Political playlist: )
I can figure out how to upload all files in a .zip, if there's a desire. zips ahoy! I hope. Somebody lemme know if that worked?
AAAAARGH I had this thing like 3/4 written in the text box with my last post then decided to make it separate and public and cut it but didn't paste it somewhere else to save it and then I copied another URL and now it's gone, gone into the capricious aether. Dagnabbit. Time to start again.

It's an exciting time for reproductive justice (i.e. activism oriented toward sexual and reproductive rights, sexual and reproductive health and social justice) right now, particularly here in Canada; unfortunately the news is mostly grim.

Clusterfuck #1: Premier Dalton McGuinty's provincial government promising a lovely (in theory--practice depends on teachers) new sexual health education plan for the province, and then backing down under pressure from a coalition of shrill people (who, I conclude, must really love STIs, unintended teen pregnancies, hate crimes, stupidity or all of the above). More current word is that the curriculum is being "reworked". To express your support for the complete (i.e. sexual health and all) curriculum, please write to Minister of Education Leona Dombrowsky.

Clusterfuck #2: Harper's federal gubbermint cutting off funding to humanitarian projects that provide abortions to women in developing nations, claiming that "Canadians want to see their foreign aid money used for things that will help save the lives of women and children in ways that unite the Canadian people rather than divide them." I'm about ready to get smashy on these Conservative lunchboxes, I really am. You know what, Mr. Dead-eyes McMurdering Genocide-Denying Oilguzzler? I'm a Canadian, and I want to see my foreign aid money used for things that will actually help save the lives of women and children, including access to safe hassle-free abortions (but then I'm the kind of freaky radical who wouldn't vote for you for a bucket of diamonds and puppies, so I suppose my opinion doesn't count). For this one write to your MP and the BPM.

Without downplaying the seriously skeezy colonial implications of condemning in "less-developed nations" practices which are legal and even covered under provincial medical insurance here in Canada (not that I imagine the Tories are happy with this situation, but women here are possibly harder to push around), I want to remind readers that the fight for abortion access "at home" is far from over. For just a few examples, this excellent article covers obstacles to accessing abortion services in Canada, particularly the Maritime provinces, as well as documenting the struggles of reproductive justice activists protesting campus presentations by the headsplodingly noxious and evil anti-choice "Genocide Awareness Project" which uses giant billboards to "graphically compare the victims of abortion [i.e. fetuses, which must be kept alive until parturition but apparently no longer because in no place do they or many other anti-choice groups, so far as I can tell, advocate any kind of post-natal health care] to victims of other atrocities, such as Jews in the Holocaust" (WTF I don't even!) at Canadian universities. Yes, this is from 2010--22 years after the Canadian supreme court cut the law against abortion.

Clusterfuck #3, slightly less about reproductive justice and more about sexuality and education: Music teacher fired from Catholic school in Vancouver, apparently for being a lesbian. She took a short leave to spend time with her partner and their new baby and was prevented from returning to work, reportedly because of complaints from parents fearing she might "influence" their daughters. A-can I get a "*headdesk*"?

ETA: not a clusterfuck: my friend, writer and sex educator Andrea Zanin, is doing some research in preparation for a new workshop, and if you perform or receive cunnilingus (or analogous acts for men and women of trans experience--see survey) you can help by sharing your experience here.
This might be my last or second-last post to this LJ that isn't cross-posted from Dreamwidth. I'm going to be shifting over soon, anyway; I just wanted to get this out of my saved drafts pile first.

You may or may not recall that on January 26th of last year I posted a meme promising to Make Stuff for anybody who commented. The one year time span has come and gone. I never forgot about it, though I did get thoroughly sidetracked several times. I still intend to fulfill my promises, as soon as I'm able; this is an update on my progress.
[livejournal.com profile] pyroclasticgrub: I think you already know I was knitting you a vest. I had mostly finished it this fall, then ran out of yarn, and because the yarn I'm using was thrifted and old and I don't know where it came from, I cannot buy more. I've tried it on (we have pretty similar circumferences, I think?) and there seems to be a lot of positive ease, so I'm going to try frogging and restarting it with fewer stitches. I have a few other projects with stricter time limits to finish first.
[livejournal.com profile] prairiedaun: I had a lot of trouble deciding what to do for you. You can do your own knitting and many other crafts, you're good at finding music, you cook and bake, I don't know what your current fandoms are. I settled on designing a hat in your honour. Not sure it's the kind of thing you'd wear, but I hope you'll enjoy the premise at least. I'll put the pattern on Ravelry when I'm done. I'll probably donate the first prototype as a raffle prize for a pet rescue fundraiser coming up in a couple of weeks in Ottawa.
[livejournal.com profile] johnnypurple: A mix! This one has actually been technically finished for ages, aside from some minor picking and poking. It's big (30 tracks) and maybe a little weird; it started with me looking for a theme to work around and deciding somewhat arbitrarily to use only Canadian artists, and then it mutated into this big thing about Canadian identity, or my experience of living in a country with A Certain Reputation and trying to reconcile (or not) my love for so many of the people and places and words and ideas and bits of art that get flagged "Canadian" (willingly or nay) or that entangle in the rhizomatic tendrils of my "Canadian" experiences, with all the things I hate about that Reputation and about the realities of actually living here (many of which, such as sabotaging climate talks in Copenhagen, sabotaging post-secondary funding especially for social science and humanities students, denying Canada's history of colonialism, denying Canada's abuse of Afghan detainees, and proroguing parliament AGAIN to avoid talking about this stuff at least until the fucking wasteful destructive celebration of nationalism known euphemistically as the 2010 Vancouver-Whistler Olympic games are over, can be credited to the Harper administration's reign of bullshit; others, like performing pelvic exams on unconscious surgery patients without our knowledge or consent are less new [this example is pretty new to public awareness] but still fucking GROSS). At different points the playlist was much longer (but I don't need to include songs from every Canadian artist I kinda like) or much more angrily political (but that's hijacking, and there are better fora); I've tried to tame it down to artists or tracks I'm really fond of right now and which I feel stand out in some particular way, and use the Canadian identity issues mostly as a substrate. I'm posting it for everybody to enjoy, although I do especially hope that you specifically, [livejournal.com profile] johnnypurple, find some tracks or artists really warm you (or cool you, or whatever you need most this week). My title for the project is "A Case of You".

music and stories )

ETA: BONUS TRACK! This totally should have been on the list, except that I hadn't listened to the album all the way through before I posted:
The Cliks (Toronto), We Are The Wolverines
We all come from the wheel and fire
We are, we are, we are the wolverines
Burning in your heart's desire
We are, we are, we are the wolverines

Because the Cliks are awesome and Lucas Silveira is a rock'n'roll god in the ascendant phase. Because Wolverine is a strange kind of Canadian icon even when he's played by an Australian in American movies (comic books do weird things to geography--cities, worlds, bodies, plausibilities). Because the first year I volunteered at the Winnipeg Folk Festival I had a conversation with Billy fucking Bragg about how he hadn't been a very good goatherd (no joke) and he hypothesized that in Canada wolverines would be the dominant menace re: disinterring livestock, rather than foxes which were the problem where he'd worked (they're not). Because the wolverine at the Assiniboine Park Zoo in Winnipeg is a total camwhore. Because the song is sexy and somehow inspiring even if I'm not sure I quite get it. Wolverines!
This Land Is Whose Land?
Race, Place and Genre: Situating “Folk” in Folk Festivals 1

It's been over a month since this year's Winnipeg Folk Festival, and I still have a stack of other things I Should Probably Be Working On, but if I leave this any longer it's not going to get written, and I need to write it.

Bird's Hill Provincial Park, 30some km NE of Winnipeg. A beautiful summer night on the Canadian prairies; stunning crayon-box sunset giving way to night's chill and stars almost as numerous as the mosquitoes (but theorizing “nature” and materiality of place is another conversation). It's getting near the end of the Mainstage concert, Thursday night at the 36th annual Winnipeg Folk Festival.2 I'm sitting at my grandparents' tarp, next to the mid-audience sound tower. King Sunny Adé and His African Beats have just left the stage, and I'm already mentally blogging (a couple of people on my friendslist had recently posted about size positivity, and apropos of that discussion I wanted to salute the two beautiful women dancers/hand percussionists whose enthusiastic performances were definitely a highlight of his set and possibly the whole weekend). Then, while the stage crew sets up for night's headliner Xavier Rudd, Vance Gilbert comes out to do a short set (in festival patois, a “'tweener”) and comments after his first song about how kind it was of the festival organizers to put all the Negroes on the same night. There's an audible hiss as thousands of hippies and seasonal wannabes draw a shocked breath. I wince, not because I'm scandalized by the suggestion but because I'd been thinking along similar lines when I read the schedule a few days earlier. It's not technically true, this year (Oumou Sangaré was on Mainstage the following night and Burning Spear on Saturday), but it's far from a spurious accusation.
read more . . . )
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