Friday, March 29, 2013


Say Al Gore and I think environment, and immediately have a sense of Gore's breadth of vision, his steadfastly honest, unwavering, loving concern for our country.

And his projects, research, his huge efforts to gather the world leaders at one table to agree, to work together, to do what must be done to hold onto water, green lands, forests, animals, breathable air. 
What Gore said and did when he won the election, or maybe won it, and he chose to concede -- why he conceded we'll never truly understand -- but what he said, and how he handled it was, and still is admired, remembered.

(Also the vision of him kissing his wife Tipper so lovingly, bending her way back, as if they were ballroom-dance-partners.)

Other events -- what Al Gore has said and done and written, and tried to fix, spent his time and money on -- a builder he is -- with his own hands, he can do all the things that he has hired the top, highly trained, full-lime experts to do.

Need a run-down reminder? Hey, NY Times critic, Michael Lind, sums it up in this recent Sunday Times review of Gore's new book.

"In a little more than a decade, since he won the popular vote but lost the presidential election to George W. Bush in 2000, the former vice president and Tennessee senator Al Gore has been a best-selling author; starred in an Oscar-winning documentary, 'An Inconvenient Truth' (2006); won the Nobel Peace Prize, in 2007, for his environmental activism; and made a fortune some have estimated to be bigger than Mitt Romney’s, thanks in part to the recent sale of his stake in the 'Current TV Network' to Al Jazeera. In his new book, 'The Future: Six Drivers of Global Change,' Gore takes on a subject whose scale matches that of his achievements and ambition."

Later in the article, the reviewer says --"The book focuses on the hacking of democracy and gives the reader a vision of the influence of technological innovation on politics."

Hacking of democracy -- that phrase resonates --it's a subject that's on the minds of many of us -- it's what I feel.

But Al Gore seems different now -- older, less passionate. To me it's as if he has put himself in a lock box, where we can't get to the real man.

There was ugly stuff in the news after he and his wife separated. Suddenly we were seeing a guy who missed his wife, needed a woman sexually. Or, maybe what we saw was edited and made disturbingly personal. (Like the Fox News reporter did with Shirley Sherrod -- that truthful, liberated government worker who's words were edited, and  made into to race-prejudiced, bitter, black woman who was hurting people who needed help.)

An elephant never forgets, they say. And we TV watchers, eater-uppers of scandals -- we don't bother checking out what's served to us. We taste the spicy, sinful, deliciously wrong things a hero does, and yum yuming, remember the feast.

Does the lock-boxed Al, who's layered on about more than a few pounds, who talks flatly, dispassionately, always logically -- with pros and cons in a single sentence -- has our Al Gore donned age, and pounds protectively?

The Al Gore chatting with the interviewer in the video below, agreed with the negative possibilities, when the  kindly, polite interviewer suggested, "Haven't you  sold your network to an oil backed enemy of America --aren't you're making millions and giving Al Jazerra a daily presence in our lives?"

Brilliantly logical, the quick-thinking Gore, immediately, unhurriedly, agreed. He verified he "done wrong" and justified it, backed it with reasoning that even anti-Gore-ites can't ignore, scoff at, or disregard.

Golly, I truly admire this  man. He inspires me. And yet -- I don't know why -- but when he's talking, edplaining  so clearly, eloquently, my mind wanders.

It's probably overload. I'm plumb worn out from ideas, marvelous things that urgently need to get done, that I can't do anything about. No, I not bored. I just feel like taking a nap.

Hey, we're all growing older and lock-boxing ourselves into yesterday's ideas.  Even if you're convinced what he "done wrong" is wrong, this is Al Gore

Of course he has lock-boxed himself. He has to protect himself, has to speak less passionately -- he's been battered and bruised, and he's weary -- like we are older, wiser, and wearier.  Even so, Al Gore always thinks things through, and IS always, always,   steadfastly honest, unwavering in his  loving concern for our country.
I trust him.



Wednesday, March 27, 2013


1973 in Kamamto :PJs

Am I a David Bowie fan?

No, but he grew famous in the world as I was making a name for myself in dance.

Wow -- the changes one makes!

The self-assured, handsome, young guy presented himself to the music world as a sex object.

It seems to me, that the choices he made early on, when he was striving for that big break, is what he glommed onto.

Aside from his great looks, his voice had an exceptionally large vocal range -- an interesting high, (a falsetto like Michael Jackson), a lullabying middle-range, also a very strong, mellow, basso. Maybe Bowie should have stuck with his voice, but early in his career, Bowie chose to promote himself as a sexy potential lover.  

He projected a gayness as "Ziggy Stardust," (that's what he called himself, back then), and (to me) seemed to be saying I can be anything -- be whatever you want me to be -- comic, tragic, virginal-innocent, lascivious-wicked, male, female, transgender.

Why did  Bowie fasten onto that? I think the mirror told him that, and his love life told him that. He had the self belief that one has when you're young, and you're intensely aware of how people respond to you -- how one person, than another, and another falls madly in love with you.

As time passed, of course. he got wounded by incompatibilities, infidelities -- all that sort of thing that goes with being a star. But success -- fame, standing ovations, making big money -- gave him more and more power, and Bowie seemed to move away from being seduced, to seducing. 

All of David Bowie's selves succeeded. He was one of the strangest, most compelling stars of the  seventies. He probably inspired Prince and Madonna. They, like him, and  he, like them, kept music lovers surprised, wondering what he was going to look like or do  next, while he was creating and promoting new albums.

In 2004, Mother Nature hit Bowie hard. Something happened to him backstage after a gig. Was it a heart attack? We heard rumors about surgery -- a clogged artery -- but no official announcements.

Since then (nearly a decade) Bowie has mostly disappeared. There were brief glimpses of him at a few music and fund-raising events. In 2009,  with his wife, he attended his son's movie premiere -- his son, Duncan Jones, formerly called "Zowie," directed the award winning science fiction film, "Moon." But Bowie has not been performing, or releasing any new recordings for the past nine years.

Out of the blue, January 8, 2013, on iTunes, 66-year-old David Bowie released a song, "Where Are We Now," and a video. It's a mournful, reminiscing ballad about the places in Berlin where Bowie hung out in the seventies. Though Bowie also released a video of the song, there have been no press conference, announcements, or interviews -- no marketing campaign, not even a tweet.

There was just the promise, on Bowie's Website, of an album to come in March, but on February 26th, with no fanfare, he released the video for a second single, “The Stars (Are Out Tonight),” which pairs him with actress Tilda Swinton, a tall, boyish-looking, 52-year-old Scottish actress, winner of the 2007 Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.

The reviews have been overwhelmingly enthusiastic. Still, Bowie has said nothing in public. Nevertheless, he was in the headlines in London, when he approved the Victoria and Albert Museum's new exhibition called "David Bowie"  (March 23th to July 28th 2013), that looks  at the ways in which Bowie influenced the music industry, as well as  how his sound and style changed over the duration of his career.

Here's a photo from the "The Stars" video.

Here's a video of  "Where Are We Now."

This is a link to the Daily Mail -- photos -- and after you skim down the page, you can play  video of "The Stars (Are Out Tonight)" 
It pleases me, as if I know him, that he's performing again.  I think, listening to these two pieces, that perhaps now we are finally meeting the real David Bowie.

Monday, March 25, 2013


Hey, a hurt knee is not a big deal. 

Other aches and pains are worse and much more important -- golly, they can be your body warning you about serious things.

Okay, my knee hurts when I do my morning exercises -- simple exercises -- it barely hurts -- sometimes it doesn't hurt at all.

That proves that my hurt knee is not a big deal, right?

Hey, I do everything I know to stay in shape, and I know a lot about exercise, healthful foods, bones, muscles, ligaments, joints -- all that physical therapy stuff. I work out , usually joyously, sometimes peevishly, but I know it's the way I can stop my body from um ... getting kind of decrepit.

Hurray for me and my will power and knowledge.  I've danced since age five. Throughout my years as a dancer, I've worked out -- in dance classes, in my bedroom sometimes, and when I was traveling, I worked out in hotel rooms, bathrooms, kitchens, and rented spaces. (I'm chuckling over the phrase "Worked Out." I've worked IN -- inwardly as well as outwardly, to keep on being able to run, climb, jump, as well as to continue to do the usual reaching, bending, lifting things.)

Okay, my hurt knee is NOT getting better. I hate having a hurt knee. I can't blame it on dancing or exercising. 

I'm not discussing it with my husband or friends who will say "oh, poor you, oh you poor dear, what did your doctor say, you ought to talk to a doctor."

My doctor doesn't know as much as I do about my muscles, exercise, injuries so, ho ho. I consulted the Internet. and quite a few other Websites explain exercises and ways to handle what I probably have -- it's an "IT band problem."  I didn't know what the IT band was, and have never used a "Foam roller"  (if you want to know more specifics, read the next paragraph.)

"The iliotibial band is a strong, thick band of fibrous tissue that runs along the outside of the leg. The IT band starts at the hip and runs along the outer thigh and attaches on the outside edge of the shin bone (tibia) just below the knee joint. The band works with the quadriceps (thigh muscles) to provide stability to the outside of the knee joint during movement."

I downloaded a how to do it video. (Yep, other Websites say that's what my pain could be and that's how to fix it)   I'm doing it three times a day. OUCH. OUCH. OUCH.

Ohmygod, it occurs to me that in order to keep my body from wearing out like a body wears out when you're sitting at a computer for hours every day -- I've got to do this Roller stuff -- I don't have the time. I have to have the time. My hurt knee is my body saying "Dar-ling-you-are-grow-ing-old."

Hey -- that's ridiculous. Endure pain so you won't have pain? Nutty! DoDo Bird dumb! Utterly inappropriate for an ex-dancer to devout herself to this.

I'm doing it anyway.