Edge of Extinction: War is the Answer

I’m quoted briefly in a long, excellent article published today in Esquire. Read it here.

Comments 136

  • What are you really saying? I’m afraid you need to just say it straight out, Daimuid.

  • mike k- …”Everything that exists is here because of that One’s will. If you love that One, then you will love that One’s manifestations – even though some of them will challenge you to do so….”

    Well, that explains everything!

    Go tell your “One” that I said he really fucked up this time with his manifestations, because most life as we know it will soon cease to exist. And to think that he did it on purpose!!
    But then again, maybe he just wants to be alone… just him and a few thermophilic bacteria.

    And btw, I’m an xx, not an xy.

  • Is that a sideways comment about my comments, Dairmuid, in fact, a judgment spoken as a need? Are you saying you think I should be nicer? I respect Marshall so very much. I don’t know what to tell you if you think I’m failing the program. I hear your evaluation of my comments.

    So, I have listened and responded to your comment. If I’ve misunderstood, then I do apologize.

  • OldGrowth,

    Are you implying that being indigenous has somehow given those who have such a status as being superior in terms of being in touch with nature? I haven’t read all of your encounters with Mike but I have the distinct feeling that somehow you associate a healthy Earth with people who are indigenous more than those who are born in other environments.
    Perhaps you can enlighten me on your position so that I can better understand whatever it is that you so detest in what has been said about noble savages? I do agree that it is a derogatory term but I can assure that savagery is not unique to any specific ethnicity or racial identity. It is a term which should never be used but what would you call someone who cuts off the head of a Christian or Hindu just for being a Hindu or a Christian? Isn’t that pure savagery?

    Anyway OldGrowth, we are all on a ship that is about to flounder. It doesn’t really matter at this point in human history just who was right or wrong, the point is that we’re all going down with the ship. So if there are any visionaries who can suggest a way out, does it matter from what ethnic community the ideas come from?

  • ogf, you and I have not seen eye-to-eye, but I respect your strength and how you speak up for what you believe.

    You say “If respect is lacking, then so is love.” And that sounds sort of true.. but I may respect people I don’t love, and I can see how one might love people whom one doesn’t respect (even if that might be unhealthy).

    In the Italian language, there are two ways of saying “I love you”: “Ti amo” (a very strong emotion), and, more commonly, “Ti voglio bene”, meaning “I want good [things] for you”. In Greek there is agape and eros, philo, storge and mania (sp?).

    Is there a variety of love words or love concepts in your heritage?

  • “I do agree that it is a derogatory term but I can assure that savagery is not unique to any specific ethnicity or racial identity.”

    So it’s Kumbaya, and everything is all the same and we are all together? I don’t think so.

    The genocide of Native Americans (well over 90% of the population) was a wrong and a catastrophe well beyond that of slavery. A whole people were eliminated. Those people happened to have an extremely developed understanding of the plants and animals with which they coevolved. All that knowledge was lost. If that wasn’t enough, an equally significant amount of plants and animals was extincted in the same process, due to the same mindset, and continues to this day. So how do we come to extinction? Through the approach to living beings that eliminated natives as well as the natural systems on which life depends. You can look at it as a human tragedy or you can look at it as an ecological one. It is both together.

    This is just the basics of the situation. I make no judgement. But, given this world-shaking catastrophe, what precisely is the point of saying “that savagery is not unique to any specific ethnicity or racial identity”? OK, savagery is not unique to any specific ethnicity or racial identity” But who is the savage in this particular instance?

    I don’t judge the powers that be, such as the oil industry peddlers. But they have great culpability for specifically proliferating climate emissions beyond the point of no return. Who is the savage there? You? Me? If you make no distinction between them and you, are you saying that life is a senseless mush, where no one is responsible for anything?

    Maybe you could explain.

  • Wren ?!
    why do you want Jean Turncoat to go away _ … Doesnt every village deserves its idiot ? Is he is a she than that makes an Idióta

  • No, Jean, that is not at all what I am saying. Not in the least.

    Hedges’ essay defines known Native American leaders in specific ways. I am saying that the essay writer is not quite correct. I provide additional cultural information regarding “medicine men” and what that term means within the culture, not how non-Indians understand, and especially not anthropologists how understand the term “medicine ” or “shamen”.

    That’s all.

    The essay also presented a definition of a vision quest as being something that “blurs the line” between self and the world.

    That is not what a vision quest was, at least not for Native Americans. I then explain that a vision quest was to blur the line between the material world and the spirit world. Native’s don’t feel “separate” from the world. I then provided an example of my view by quoting a Native American whose words support my explanation of a vision quest. It could not have been about blurring the line between self and the world, because they didn’t feel like they were separate from the world.

    This is straight-out measurable information that anyone who cares to can verify. The traditional Lakota went on vision quests prior to going to battle, requesting from Spirit that they receive the markings they would paint on their bodies and faces. The “war paint” was not decorative or psychological terrorism directed at the enemy. They were individual symbols for protection of the spirit of the warrior. That is just one example of how the vision quest is a request to the spirit world. It’s not about any boundary within this world.

    I do not agree that Shakespeare or Whitman or any other poet white guy saw nature exactly as Native Americans did. I really don’t think Shakespeare did! It is a nice sentiment, but in my 62 years of living in both cultures, that just is not true. I’ve never met a European person who sees nature the way Native Americans do. Never. They might think they do, and apparently is sells commentary by smart people and good writers, but I don’t believe it is a true statement. It takes a very different way of thinking to create the abstract worlds that literature and other Western ways of being create. It is not wrong, but it wires the brain very differently.

    Now, the reason “noble savage” is so profoundly racist, is that it has never been about Native Americans. It has a very, very long history of being a tool used in numerous ways. The term was first used in a play by Dryden. I don’t know if Dryden even ever met an American Indian, but his “noble savage” was a foil – with good reason – for chastising Europeans for the perceived faults – with good reason – of their own society. Dryden’s “noble savage” was an ideal of that was never really about American Indians at all. It was a wholly European thing. This was about 1760s or so.

    So, for a time “noble savage” was literally Europeans defining Native Americans as a contrast to themselves, a contrast between an idealized nature-loving, noble anarchist and Europe of the late 1700s, which had a number of social ills. We are all living with them now, and it really, really sucks big uglies.

    In the early to mid-19th century after all the tribes in the eastern part of the country had been eradicated, Americans developed a romantic ideal of Indians. There was lots of literature, paintings, blah, blah. This new ideal was noble, but he was not Dryden’s “noble savage.” It was all like Longfellow’s poem, Song of Hiawatha. Americans had a different relationship altogether with Indians than Europeans did, and a very different history.

    The Indians still had land holdings exceeding that of the Americans. In the mid-1800s, there was a new flurry of talk about “noble savage” fantasies, but they called it “romanticism.” Many settled Americans who had their Indian land without Indians, especially if they were inclined to appreciate Indian culture or people, were outspoken and critical of the US’s genocide. It was a political issue, and it was a debate about the ongoing genocide and land-grab. Suggestions that a person was “romantic” and considered American Indians to possess any dignity or virtues or rights whatsoever, was dismissed with “noble savage.” It was a viciously racist, colonial argument used to justify taking the rest of the US and slaughtering all the Indians.

    So, there was a rebirth of the term “noble savage,” and it’s been in use for over 160 years now to dismiss all things Native American, especially any respect for their cultures, their traditions, and especially their rights to their land. It became deeply entrenched in American academia, and it is what educated white people from Harvard and other lofty educational institutions were taught for a really, really long time.

    So, no I’m not saying anything about people being better, and I have plainly explained that I do believe that all people are the same, and how I see them the same.

    But I do NOT believe that all societies are the same. Not by a an eternal long shot.

    What I am saying is in no way what you have assumed. I’m not telling you where we all are, or issuing any cosmic judgments about the current predicament we are all in, nor telling anyone how to see it or what they should do about it.

    I’m talking about American Indians and culture. Apparently, if Chris Hedges talks about it, even if he misrepresents Indian practices and culture, then it’s no big deal. If I offer some insider info, well, “who can know?” All of a sudden, no one can really know about Indians, because they were an “olden culture.”

    To which I replied, they know. They know about vision quests and if Shakespeare really sees things the way they do/did. They know, if they’ve read Shakespeare, and I’m pretty sure plenty of them have. I have. And I disagree.

    My disagreement, the points made, get ignored. Suggesting that we actually listen to Native Americans instead of someone like Chris Hedges, well, the next response I received from Mike is that it’s all just noble savage Disney fantasies of someone who’s been smoking something.

    When I address this particularly ugly characterization, the next step is to pray for me and tell me about “love.”

    I’m still not the least impressed. In fact, I do not get treating people like that. At all. And it may be no virtue on my part, but at least if I choose to insult someone I’m not passive-aggressive about it, pretending like I’m being spiritual or some other nonsense.

    Thank you, very much for asking for a clarification. I really appreciate that.

  • oops. the term “medicine man” or shaman.”

  • Thank you, Lidia. I feel quite complimented by your words.

    Actually, they didn’t define things the way we do. They didn’t discuss that kind of thing. For example, the Cherokees have a word that I love: Checotah. It means “the other one.” It refers to two beings who love each other dearly, and are always together. It can be brothers, friends, lovers, grandparents and grandchildren who were especially close, any two people in a close relationship that it virtually defined them. Many of their words for things expressed how the thing existed in relationship to something else, a living love that could be seen in many places.

    They rarely expressed themselves in the hard separations between the world that such definitions, like brotherly love versus romantic love, etc., create. They didn’t divide the world up that way. Another example, if we were to see a young lady who appears to be attracted to a young man in the crowd, we would that. We would say she likes him, or she’s interested in him.

    They would say, “she looks at him,” or “she’s looking at him.” This captures our young lady’s behavior, and the interest is certainly implied, but they don’t automatically interpret everything like we do. Our culture is always all about seeing ascribing motives and intentions, or some kind of internal state that we presume based on behaviors. They didn’t do that.

    They were/are very, very literal with words, and both intensely pragmatic and intensely spiritual in their worldviews. I have mentioned before about a film I loved with an elder teaching young Alaska Native girls how to fillet fish with a traditional ulu. The girls got all squeamish, like town girls often do, at the fish guts.

    Now, one might believe that this elder would launch into some spiel about traditions, and how the fish feed them, and how they respect the fist, and so on. But this elder looked at them and said very simply, “It washes off.” That is a Native American speaking; It washes off. They were so different that it really is very difficult for someone without long-term living knowledge of to grasp how different.

    Thank you for asking Lidia, I appreciate it very much.

  • And please excuse my sloppy typing in my response to you, Lidia. I’m sure you get the gist of it.

  • oldgrowthforest,

    Thank you for the tone you have chosen to use in your response. I don’t want to seem that I disagree with your position on anything you have written just to be contrary. In fact much of what you wrote is undoubtedly correct, with perhaps one exception, and which is not a central argument in disputing some of the opinions offered on this post.

    You wrote that you have never met a European person who sees nature the way Native Americans do. Isn’t that a little bit of an exageration? Some would say that such a statement borders on racism, but I don’t think you meant it from that perspective. Perhaps you haven’t met enough Europeans?. In many ways, most people in the U.S. and Canada have origins in Europe. I think Grey Owl, a Canadian legend whose quotes are often used in writing about nature, was really an Englishman who disguised himself as an indigenous person.

    I am not offended by your claims, and although the genocides that were inflicted on North and South American indigenous people were as terrible and unjust as any, the fact remains that we are now all part of the problem, and hopefully some will be part of solution. The point is that one does not have to have received an indigenous DNA to feel whatever it is that makes an individual aware of the beauty and intricacy of nature.

    We could discuss and argue about the differences that exist, and I have no doubt that there are, but the planet’s ecological systems cannot continue to suffer from our inability to allow each other to live on its surface in constant conflict with each other. According to statistics, there are approx. 50,000 people who die every single day, 15 million every year, as the result of extreme poverty. I am personally much more concerned with the next 50,000 who will die as the result of our neglect that the genocides of the past. If we haven’t learned how to live together on the Earth, we will die together. I cannot agree more that indigenous people have suffered as much as any other as the result of human cruelty, but the past will not do much to resolve any future we might still have.

    My grandson is half-Salish. As a very young and recent university graduate who had found part-time work in Canada’s National Parks, he finds himself in charge of all news reporting on the CBC network and works as a communications specialist in fighting the fires raging in our province. At 22, he has never once mentioned his indigenous heritage, nor I think has it ever entered his mind.

    In fighting the fires of hell, ethnicity goes out the window. As long as the fires are put out, that is what counts. We can not fix all of the crimes of humanity’s past, but we can certainly work together to try and prevent the genocides that are occurring every single day.
    Although I do not practice any religion, I must admit that the pope’s number one message that climate change is mostly caused by extreme poverty and its consequences was as accurate as it gets. But that’s another issue.

    As far as all the chained gang wanting me to make an early exit from the flock. Have no worries! Done!

  • Yes, ogf, thanks for the explications. There really are fascinating varieties of emotional components and structures. I think they all must depend very much on context to be correctly experienced and understood, and that it is impossible for most of us to grasp the subtleties of other cultural notions, past or present. All most of us really have are shadows.

    I can appreciate the system of classifying strong bonds irrespective of the type of bond it might outwardly seem to be.


    I like your fish story. It reminds me of my Italian grampa, a carpenter.. from when I was a kid. When it started to rain, everyone would want to skitter away for cover. He poked us and challenged us gruffly: “Whaddayagonna MELT!?!?”

  • So I don’t mind staying under the rain, because of grampa.

  • Thank you, Lidia. I think your comments are wonderfully insightful, and I totally agree with you.

  • Lidia: hey paisano!

  • I think more activities than we believe are driven by cultural ideas. A tentative way to sum this up would go somewhat like this: There is no thinking that isn’t class thinking. OR, There is no thinking that isn’t cultural thinking. It might seem that there is only one way to put out a fire, but a different culture might choose to let the fire burn. One culture might wish to protect nearby buildings, while another culture would have known not to put the buildings there to begin with. Sorry, I don’t mean to be bullshitting anyone. But this seems to be a perspective worth considering (more ably than I can muster).

  • I think you are correct, Artleads, and Lidia said something of the same. However, I think it is deeper than that. Much, much deeper, and about more than what we value.

    Language, which cannot be entirely separate from culture because it defines reality in direct, indirect and multilayered ways. ARE you 25 years old? (English) Or, do you HAVE 25 years? (French)

    When the word in your language for ‘cousin’ and ‘brother’ are the same word, how does that affect the way you see reality? The way we define things teaches our relationship to them. If I, and all the members of my society call the earth my Mother, and consider her literally sacred, how is my entire worldview going to be compared to people who call the earth “resources, land, property, dirt (and then it’s bad to be “dirty”), etc.

    These differences are so deep, and they dictate so much of how we even perceive reality, that it’s my opinion that unless you are raised with it, you can’t understand it. The Commanche used to say that if they had a white child adopted into their tribe before the child turned nine, they would have that child forever.

    I think when we are born into a culture like that, it literally wires us differently, and it is emotional, as Lidia said.

  • p.s. I worked with Evon Peter briefly a few years ago, a young Athabascan chief in Alaska, and he was talking about this and he stated very simply – “It is two different worldviews.”

    And these worldviews are irreconcilable. You have to think and see in completely different ways, and that is why I say that I have never met a white person who can understand how traditional Indians, now and historically, saw things, and especially nature. Because it’s not about agreeing that we all “need” nature, and it’s not about agreeing that nature is “beautiful.”

    It is so much deeper than that, and the only way who is not familiar with Native culture from a living perspective, does not have the language to understand. And I fully accept that the same is true of me with cultures that I do not have living experience of.

  • oops. Someone who is not familiar with Native culture from a living perspective does not have the language to understand. They don’t have the vocabulary.

  • The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
    He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.
    He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
    Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.
    Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.

    “A human being is part of a whole, called by us the ‘Universe’ —a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts, and feelings, as something separated from the rest—a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circles of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.” Einstein

    In the Buddhist meditation called the Six Elements Practice, we reflect in turn on each of the six elements—the four physical elements of Earth, Water, Fire, and Air—plus Space and Consciousness.
    In each case we reflect on the presence of the element within our being: for example, with Earth we note the presence of bone, tissue, teeth, hair, etc.
    We then reflect on the elements outside of ourselves; in this case we consider rocks, stones, earth, buildings, plants, the bodies of other beings, etc.

    Then we note how everything that is in us that pertains to the element under consideration came from the elements outside. Originally our body started as the fusion of one cell from our mother and another from our father—neither of whom was us. Then our body grew as our mother passed on nutrients that she’d ingested from the outside world. Again, those nutrients weren’t us. Later, we ate on our own, but still everything that went into building up the body was and is merely borrowed from the outside world.

    Finally, for each element we recollect that everything in us that is that element is constantly returning to the outside world. Our muscles and other tissues, and even our bones, are constantly dissolving and being rebuilt (which is why your muscles and bones waste away through inactivity). We lose hairs, shed skin cells, and have to make regular trips to the bathroom to rid ourselves of waste. All of this returns to the world outside us and to the wider element. And when we die, we stop even trying to hold on. Everything that was “us” returns to the wider element.

    This practice is completely liberating. It frees us from the “prison,” as Einstein called it, of the delusion that we are separate from the universe. We come to realize instead that we are nothing but interrelatedness, that we exist only in relation to the world, including other people, and that we have no separate existence in any real sense. We are completely and inseparably connected on a physical, mental, and emotional level with other beings. The six element practice gives us a realization of this truth—a realization that goes far beyond the intellectual—and other Buddhist practices such as the Brahmaviharas help to ignite the emotions of relationship that follow from this insight into interconnectedness, widening our circles of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature.

    (I like to reflect further that I have created nothing of all that is within me or around me, not a speck – all that is is a gift…)

  • Another quite obvious example of language and relationship and perception that I thought of: What does it do to a people whose names and clans are almost universally the names of animals. The raven and eagle clans of the Tlingit. The bear, wolf, and bird clans of the Cherokee. What does it do to a person’s perception of reality and relationship with animals when Almost everyone you know is named something like Lame Bull, or Ten Bears, or Bird Girl, or Red Fox, Lone Wolf, etc.?

    This is not to say that Europeans are not sometimes named Fox or Wolf, but that cannot compare to the extent of identity and relationship to animals that Indian people had that was reflected in their language. It makes a total difference in how you even see animals AND people.

    In indigenous cultures, all people are NOT “man.” They are the “human beings,” the “people.” What does that difference do to the relationship between males and females in a society, versus placing “man” as the ultimate classification, and “woman” is only a subset?

    Then, when you have hundreds of thousands, even millions of differences like that in worldviews, and concept, does it seem likely that people deeply entrenched in one or the other are going to understand each other?

    In my experience, no, they are not going to understand each other. It’s not nearly as easy as that. If I interact with everything like it’s an object, it’s material and dead, and not a subject, then for all practical purposes, I’m not even living on the same planet as someone sees sees all creation as a subject, as having rights of its own. We cannot understand each other under such circumstances, and again, Lidia, you are correct and it’s about the greater context.

  • Interesting article, interview by the author of The Science Delusion – http://www.tricycle.com/feature/science-delusion

  • Really neat piece on how ordinary folks are changing the world –
    http://www.thenewandancientstory.net/

  • “If I interact with everything like it’s an object, it’s material and dead, and not a subject, then for all practical purposes, I’m not even living on the same planet as someone sees sees all creation as a subject, as having rights of its own.”

    This struck me in a strange way recently. Because I look at the landscape intensely when we travel, and because I have never been able to stand the thought of “developing” or building on the land, I’ve been an opponent of deforestation and real-estate concepts for many decades. Although I know nothing of indigenous beliefs around land, my extreme concern with the aesthetics of the landscape brings me to the sacred from a unique perspective.

    I live in NM, in a pocket of many varied pueblos. The average gringo (like me, in a weird way) knows no indigenous people from these pueblos. The customs and community ways would be most foreign to us. OTOH, I tend to see gringos quite often, and feel somewhat at home with them. They often care about rural values and natural landmarks nearby. They go to county meetings and protest this or that development. In some cases, those sites are traditional (“past”) native hunting grounds or “sacred” places, and the natives will come to meetings and speak out from their traditional POVs. Gringos appreciate the “support,” but have no idea who the native peoples are. We live in different worlds that never interact.

    So now, there’s a change in my thinking. Maybe the crisis which is the concern of NBL has stripped away constraints. Certain posters like Satish and others have helped too. I don’t have any understanding of traditional sacred sites.I see the entire landscape as sacred. And I don’t want it cluttered up with human stuff. I’m really really serious about that. No holds barred. In essence, I’m saying to civilization, leave the landscape the fuck alone and make do with the cites which are already there.

    I propose to bring up the sacredness issue in any future addresses I make to the county. It would be good to know how best to go about it, and how to, or not to, relate my views to those of indigenes.

  • I have heard Indians say, “Everywhere you stand is sacred.”

    Sacred places, on the other hand, are sacred and also have significance beyond. The Black Hills, because of their shape and location, are the “heart” of Turtle Island, what we call “North America.”

    However, all the earth is sacred. Our job as humans is to live up to being worthy of the life we have been given, to be as sharing and giving as the Mother, and to respect all of the Creation, including the animals, the rivers, the trees, all of it. Taking, being greedy beyond your needs, being destructive and inflicting suffering and death everywhere, is beneath a real human being. It’s about respect, which is integral to love. You don’t disrespect that which you love, and no one feels loved when they are disrespected.

  • The diversity of opinion is outrageous! Is it true that whenever one defends an opinion it is the ego at work? Is it be better to spend a lifetime seeking that one perfect opinion, or is it better to have no opinions at all?

    https://www.theguardian.com/books/2015/mar/13/john-gray-steven-pinker-wrong-violence-war-declining

  • I suppose I just have to get up there and be honest–say what I know, feel or understand, and what I don’t. Mine is a pathetic lack of depth and understanding. I see through a glass darkly. What’s the best I can hope for, given such glaring deficits. If we could intensify development, elegantly, in the cities and somehow leave the outlying lands alone, that would be something to behold.
    —————–

    In case anyone thinks it’s easy (or even possible) to jettison racism, one needs to examine one’s response to Serena Williams:

    http://www.vox.com/2015/3/11/8189679/serena-williams-indian-wells-racism

  • Speak your heart, is all I can say. Be honest. Speak from a personal perspective, and by establishing what is your perspective of reality, of “how things are.”

    They say things that don’t appear very deep, but they are. One of the most respected elders here in Alaska, again an Athabascan, a man in his late 80s, once said to me about this whole mess, “Lack of respect for Nature is what is wrong.” Traditional Native people don’t analyze things like we do, unless they get sent to law school or something, and they learn to jump through those specific verbal and performance hoops.

    My elder and friend, Rita, once said to me as she looked out the window at the great Alaska wilderness, “What’s wrong with it the way it is?”

    They are not always creating abstract alternate realities to live by, and their world view doesn’t allow for it. Our culture thinks creating a utopian reality, and then talking about it, getting everyone on board, cooperating, analyzing, and forcing the Earth and all living beings into line with the created utopia, is the height of intelligence.

    They don’t believe that.

  • That is, NOT by establishing what is your perspective of reality, etc.

    good grief. I should reread better.

  • For mike

  • ogf, what you say about the names is very profound.

    A lot of Anglo-Saxons have last names that reflect a trade.. you know, the Protestant work ethic.. so you have Mr. Brewer, Ms. Cooper, all the various Wrights and Smiths, and so forth. The naming reflected the cultural context.

    In Northern Europe, there’s an emphasis on lineage: Jorgenson, or Ingridsdottir. In a population of millions as opposed to dozens, that ceases to have any coherent meaning.

    I read that male Sikhs all have the last name Singh, and all the female Sikhs have the last name Kaur. Kind of confusing, again, in large populations.

    There are a whole bunch of last names in Italian that reflect the fact that the original owner was unwanted, a foundling left with the Church sisters.. Names such as Innocente, Esposito (exposed), Trovato (found), Abbandonato (abandoned), Di Dio (of god), Lodadio (praise god), D’Angelo (of an angel), del Popolo (of the people); di Giugno (born in June), etc. Hundreds of people in the US with the last name “Abbandonato”!!

  • Tom, did you grow up in suburban RI as well?

    —-
    Here’s a classic treatment of 1950s globalization leading to societal confusion:

    The pants with label on the back = Levis

    Note the guy who ‘plays’ his chewing gum (another American abomination, as far as Italians are concerned).

  • If you gonna be a square, you ain’t gonna go nowhere!

  • Thank you, Lidia. I’m really glad you can appreciate my comment. I know about the name derivations that are predominant Europe. I’ve been aware for a long time that names like cooper, waterman, smith, butler (that dashing Rhett for example), cook, wainwright, and many others are work-job names. And the heritage names, which is true of some Jewish names, also. There were also some place names such as Dale and Forest, which were probably left over from the druids, but that’s just a guess.

    It is all quite interesting to me, and it has always caused me to consider how these things shape identity and perception, and how it shapes individuals and societies. It means a lot to me that you understand. Thank you.