Thursday, November 24, 2011

The Real Origin of Thanksgiving...

Like several other American "holidays" -- such as Columbus Day Christmas and Easter, Thanksgiving as it is celebrated today is barely recognizable when compared to the events that led to its formation many years ago. When taking the plight of the Native American people into consideration, Thanksgiving is an especially vexing and bitter pill to swallow for historians and students of fairness truth and justice studies. A human rights nightmare for a variety of complex reasons and issues, Thanksgiving poses many challenges for those who are familiar with the actual events that transpired during "the Pilgrim years".

Even today it's a challenging mission for those of us who long to participate in celebrating the noble values now associated with the newly revised national holiday and at the same time still want to honor the truth... and acknowledge the many who suffered and died through the centuries in respect to this particularly dark moment in American history.

Sometimes it may feel as if everything around us is myth and Matrix. And indeed in the end we may just discover that this is more fact than we could even imagine now at such an early stage in our evolution. This we do not yet know for certain. What we do know however is that our numbers are exponentially increasing, those who long for more fairness beauty truth art peace love liberty justice and freedom in the world. Very soon it will come and all will be well.

In that spirit, Happy Thanksgiving to all.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

The Coming Inevitable Irrelevance of Facebook

Mazzini it kinda sounds like you and ES don't quite get what's goin on. I don't use Facebook Notes. News goes to our various websites and views go to our blogs. Normally they feed Facebook. Both our profiles and our fanpages. THRU the fb notes feature. But we never actually USE Notes. Why would we? Its not our real estate as one of u insightfully pointed out. But Fb is now dismantling this system. Forcing everyone to do one of either two things: add content directly to Facebook (which is what they are requesting/suggesting we do)... OR copying and pasting our website and blog links onto our Facebook pages and profiles every single day.
Theyre trying to get people and companies to spend more time on Fb specifically and directly rather than just "feeding" facebook from our own real estate. Dig? The problem is that people are just too busy for that. Small to large companies even busier. No one (person or company) is going to sacrifice their own website or blog to dedicate more time to "work Facebook".
The truth is that the visionaries and early adapters are already migrating to Twitter like birds to the South in Winter and using Sensable to automate facebook content on a weekly basis, rendering facebook even less "real logged in time." (This comment will post 14 hours after I actually wrote it. But no one will ever know that.) Only what Godin calls "the Laggards" who are always the last to adopt new tech and are still new to Fb are excited about it and attempting to "work it". Good place to advertise, gain brand exposure and fans in order to steer those people to your own real estate. For sure. For now.
Just as rickipedia said, They got too greedy. Homogenized. Boxed inside their own shell. For some dumb reason they cant seem to see outside their own windows anymore. Monopolized as rickipedia says.
The moment they did away with boxes and tabs and that open architecture and friendliness to third party apps was the signal that they were on their way out and towards irrelevance. Like MySpace they'll stick around for awhile. Well funded and plenty of capital. So they'll keep trying to stick their heads in our fridges to see what weve got to eat; but they're relevance is shrinking. Twitter is making sure of that.
In addition, as they INCREASE their demands on users, forcing users to post content directly in rather than "feeding", and trying to get inside our mobile devices and cell phones, and email us all the time with their silly notifications, the public is entering an information overload phase and the pushback is frightening the hell out of the Zuckster.
I can't quite yet tell you EXACTLY what's going to happen or what it's going to look like, but what I'm feeling is that it will have something to do with YouTube meets Twitter meets Wordpress meets Google+ and Gmail. Especially if Google and Wordpress maintain thier open ended architecture, and Twitter continues to allow users to use various third party apps to access the service they provide. And all of this happened really fast. Literally within weeks. Why? Because people want freedom. They only want to "Occupy" where they're not allowed to. Now that's funny. But unfortunately for Facebook it's entirely true.
But hey, stay tuned because this all may change and be very five minutes ago by the time we wake up tomorrow. But to hammer the final death nail in the Fb coffin, we won't hear about this change on Facebook. We'll learn about it on Twitter. So see ya there manana. Ciao for now. Ambassador out.

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

The Occupy Revolution: Collateral Damage

I feel it is necessary to recount something that was spoken to me on Sunday. In of all places the food storage pantry of our church where we store all the canned goods for our "feed the homeless" program called Sharing Table. After my recent 6 week absence from nyc, a good friend passed me an arms full of canned green beans to shelve and looked me in the eyes; "I only have one thing to say about your newest activism Eddie... The more money that you all pull out of the banks in your 'Occupy movement', good people who work at those banks are losing their jobs: tellers and lower income earners who only make $20,000 to $25,000. That's who's being affected the most by your actions. You need to be aware of that." Her comment took me by surprise. Indeed we do need to be aware of this. And now we are. Something for us all to be aware of. And to ponder. I found myself disturbed. But only for a breif moment, as I recalled that BECU the WA based credit union hired over 100 new employees last week in order to meet the demand created by how many of us who transferred our money to them from Bank of America and Wells Fargo. Of course there is so much more to this story.... And together we shall cover it all in our continuing dialogues. But at the least let us remember that where we are presently in our various 'Occupy Revolution' tactics there are going to be some innocents who get affected by our actions. And that surely is not our goal. To each of them we offer our apologies and hope that in the long run this will be a peaceful and successful shift for the better good for us all.
Interestingly about an hour later someone else said to me in response to this comment "Then they too will recognize that they are part of the 99% when they get laid off while the owners and officers and directors at these banks keep their jobs and continue to be paid tens of millions of dollars a year. It's sad. But it's true. And they will soon join the cause once they see that even they are not immune to the rampant greed of Wall Street and Big Banks." Perhaps I thought this is the only way for all of the 99% to truly come together. When the only people left standing are the 1%, then we can begin the transformation to a more fair and equitable system for all 100% of us.

Friday, November 04, 2011

A Blueprint for Achievement

Believe while others are doubting.
Plan while others are playing.
Study while others are sleeping.
Decide while others are delaying.
Prepare while others are daydreaming.
Begin while others are procrastinating.
Work while others are wishing.
Save while others are spending.
Listen while others are talking.
Smile while others are pouting.
Commend while others are criticizing.
Persist while others are quitting.

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Not much to report. Work and more work. Back and forth with dear Juliet through letters. We are at the other side of the eye of the storm so to speak we decide. Now ready to accept and honor surely one of the greatest and rewarding friendships of our lifetimes I am sure.

Encountered a beautiful Arabic woman on the subway today. struck up a wonderful conversation about my difficulty with the French language. She is an interpreter so I was most intrigued to make her acquaintance. When I explain to her a few of my many reasons for asserting that French is the most difficult of the Latin languages at first she argues with me. I ask her to count with me in French then. as we get past the number seventy, she begins to laugh and my case was quite proved. In French they do not have a word for seventy or any other number above it. instead they say soixante-dix, the words sixty plus ten. and for the word eighty they use the term sixty plus twenty you would assume, yes? wrong, instead they say quatre-vingts, which means four times twenty. For eighty-seven they say quatre-vingt-sept, or four times twenty plus seven. And of course for the simple word of ninety they say quatre-vingt-dix, four times twenty plus ten. o.k., it can be mastered, but It is no wonder it is difficult at first for foreigners to say the least to understand the thinking. learning languages is like working out puzzles.

In any case, we reveled in this mystery for a time and then we hit my stop. And that was that. I must say I understand why people say it is difficult to meet their mate here. although obviously not too daunting a task since plenty of people do it everyday. But what do you say to a beautiful intelligent woman on a train when you arrive at your stop. “oh I think I will stay on for a while and just ride this baby into the end of the line. I have nothing better to do... I thought about this as I got off the train, never to see this girl again.

Last screening: 3 part PBS biography about Benjamin Franklin. What a man. Impressive in his accomplishments as a writer, businessman, inventor, and of course American diplomat, revolutionary and statesmen, but I had no idea he was such a schmuck as a man personally to his wife and son. I learned a lot about him. and was inspired on a great many accounts. He was our closest American equivalent to Da Vinci. A real renaissance man.

The watched pot does indeed boil by the way, lest one advise you any different. I checked it out for myself.

Too Busy to Stay Connected to Friends & Family? Remember the Five-Minute Rule

For almost all of us at this point and in this economic climate, staying in touch with our friends and family seems next to impossible. It's not that we don't love them or care. We do. No doubt about it. I don't think anyone -- no matter famous or unfamous, or how busy, callous, cynical or even jaded -- would claim that staying connected to their good friends and family is not important to them. But let's face it: it feels hard right now. Difficult. Challenging. Facebook seems to help. Twitter seems to help. Texting for sure. Emails not so much. As stated a few weeks (or perhaps even months) ago here, email has become that "best friend we just loved so much we invited to sleep over and now they won't leave." Necessary for work. But by the time we're done with how much email we need to read, address and reply to for "work related issues," the last thing we want to do when we get home is sit down and do more email for friends or family related issues. Especially if it's "just to say hello." Unless someone is just absolutely rich as hell and wealthy to no end and therefore never needs to use email for "work," email now is just as challenging to keep up with as anything else in our lives. Think laundry, dry cleaning, making dinner for the family or mowing the lawn for that matter. What was once a fun novelty has now turned into a verifiably challenging and time consuming chore or task.

Me? I'm still feeling the "texting thing" is the most private, personal, efficient and fastest way to shoot out some love to my friends and family.. But I've got plenty of friends and colleagues who feel the same way about texting as I do about email. One friend of mine, The King, absolutely refuses to text me back. He likes to "book appointments to have conversations." He says he finds texting too much work when he's spent all day "talking" for work. That just makes no sense to me. But it's his world, his life. If I'm going to stay friends with him forever I'm just going to have to abide by his contradictory illogical logic. But I'm still hoping that one day he'll wake up and realize that daily texting is a hell of a lot more personally fulfilling in friendship than nothing at all.... Because honestly, I just don't have the ability to guarantee that I'll be able to have a conversation at "8:45 PM" when he wants to make these appointments. Furthermore, making an appointment to speak with a friend, as opposed to just keeping it open, feels too much like work to me.

So what DO we do to stay connected to those we love most? Besides flying into town and showing up for an annual holiday, birth, graduation or death in the family... all very rational and reliable ways to assure that we will see our loved ones at least once a year. But again, who wants to grow up only to realize that we're only going to see our friends and/or family once a year? That's not staying connected. That's fulfilling our duty. What about the rest of the year? Read on...

This is What Relentlessness Looks Like

Right this very minute, as I sit here typing, over three-hundred and fifty college and non-comm (public access etc) radio stations across the United States are listening to and playing various songs from an album entitled All Your Heroes Become Villains. The group responsible for the creation of this dark moody eclectic and conceptual work is now called Ed Hale and The Transcendence; which brings things full circle right back to where they began nine years ago when a group by the same name released their debut album entitled Rise and Shine. Rise and Shine was a utopian dream; filled with hope, faith and optimism. Ed Hale was known as The Ambassador. He sang in multiple languages and believed every positive-message that entered his mind and sprung from his heart. The world was a stage where all we need do is believe to create our lives any way we desired or preferred. For a good long while, life really appeared to operate like this.

Songs from the album began spinning on radio stations all over America and in Europe. TV shows and movies picked some up as well. Life was good. My God was it good. At least in the insulated private world that The Ambassador and company kept themselves wrapped up in. Hale had created a fortune for himself at an early age as both a musician and as an entrepreneur. Early-retired before the age of thirty, it was hard not to feel that life was good. But that was soon to change.