16 July 2014
12 July 2014
There is probably no pleasure equal to the pleasure of climbing a dangerous Alp; but it is a pleasure which is confined strictly to the people who can find pleasure in it.
—Mark Twain, A Tramp Abroad
7 July 2014
5 July 2014
1 July 2014
“I am a battery hen. I live in a cage so small I cannot stretch my wings. I am forced to stand night and day on a sloping wire mesh floor that painfully cuts into my feet. The cage walls tear my feathers, forming blood blisters that never heal. The air is so full of ammonia that my lungs hurt and my eyes burn and I think I am going blind. As soon as I was born, a man grabbed me and sheared off part of my beak with a hot iron, and my little brothers were thrown into trash bags as useless alive.”
“My mind is alert and my body is sensitive and I should have been richly feathered. In nature or even a farmyard I would have had sociable, cleansing dust baths with my flock mates, a need so strong that I perform ‘vacuum’ dust bathing on the wire floor of my cage. Free, I would have ranged my ancestral jungles and fields with my mates, devouring plants, earthworms, and insects from sunrise to dusk. I would have exercised my body and expressed my nature, and I would have given, and received, pleasure as a whole being. I am only a year old, but I am already a ‘spent hen.’ Humans, I wish I were dead, and soon I will be dead. Look for pieces of my wounded flesh wherever chicken pies and soups are sold.”
(Thanks to Chaz Maviyane-Davies for the poster).
23 June 2014
22 June 2014
In all the world, there is no heart for me like yours. In all the world, there is no love for you like mine.
—Maya Angelou (1928-2014)
18 June 2014
15 June 2014
On this day, it seems that “society” has deemed it appropriate to single out and honour the fathers among us. I like that. I think these fine men often go without the recognition due them (not all of them, mind you, some are truly bastards and without a doubt deserve nothing less than to be ignored and forgotten as soon as possible).
I was very lucky, in a way. Although I was never able to experience “being” a father myself, I had the benefit of a truly fine father, and I am eternally thankful for this fact. My father was loving (though strict), patient (to a point), and he was undoubtedly the most “consistent” person I have ever known.
The photo above is of my pacifist Dad, John Jacob Peters, working as a lumberjack in a labour camp in British Columbia, Canada, in 1943… performing alternative service as a Conscientious Objector.
11 June 2014
Shona saying (Mozambique and Zimbabwe)