Sunday, September 28, 2008

Quote of the Day

"First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win." - Gandhi

Monday, September 22, 2008

Great Link -- Closed Captioned Videos

Google Introduces Closed Captioned Video Search

Google, the world's most popular search engine, recently introduced an advanced search feature that allows users to find closed captioned video on the Internet. To use the search feature, go to, type in keywords for videos you wish to find and select the box "Subtitles: search only for closed captioned videos." Finally click the "Google Search" button to view the results.

(Courtesy of AGBell's Volta Voices)

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

The Change We Need

Beautiful Video. There's offscreen verbal narration if you can't follow the ASL.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Here in America, We have polls.

Who knew the measure of our happiness would be the afternoon polling data from Virginia? White men between the ages of 45 and 54 who attend church less than once a month and have bowled at least a 200 game in the last year and are divorced from their first wives and own two cars, one mower, three dogs and two guns, one which they named Big Spanky? Who do they favor? Said information is fed into the giant machine, and the results are disseminated throughout the worldwide mind and we go about our days in happiness or terror in accordance.

The sky is falling! The Spanky vote is fading! How do we get back the Spankies?

I have a commercial for you then: Open with a tight shot on a redheaded girl with freckles holding some wildflowers and a Raggedy Anne doll. Pull back. She’s standing in the middle of a beautiful meadow, on a gorgeous sunshiney day. Pull back further so the whole scene is framed between fluttering Maple leaves. Then: shoot her. Slow mo. Mow her down. Fly an RPG right up Raggedy’s ass. As she looks at the camera in bewilderment, drop a nuke on her; then, as the mushroom cloud spreads across the sky, play an audio track of our opponent laughing. Fade to Black and the tag line: Our Opponent Laughs at Murdered Little Girls.

Yes indeed, this is the lovely world. This is the one precious go-round.

They’re running on hate now. It burns with more energy than truth and so it fills the newspapers and airwaves. It corrodes what it touches, peels your skin off and blinds you, gets inside your muscles and strips them, snaps your bones like twigs, leaves you desperate for an ending, any ending. Just make it stop! Field-dress me already!

Here at Gallaudet, there is not, unfortunately, the level of political activism you’d like to see. And I can understand it: the students are doubly removed from the world here, by the ivory walls and the silent ones. But that’s no excuse. If any of all y’all are reading this – we have a registration rally next Monday, the 22nd, at the Marketplace! And that Friday, we’re going to watch the debate on the big screen! Be there.

It’ll be great. Pizza and Cake and Debate. And I can give you a preview:

O: World’s broke. Let’s fix it. Together!
M: (Coughs loudly) Elitist.
O: Excuse me?
M: Yes, I’m the fixer. I’ll fix it.
O: But you broke it.
M: Not fair. You can’t say that. How can you say that? How. Can. You. Say. That?
O: Uh, you wrote the policies.
P: (Offstage) I can see the moon from my house! Whoa-ho! I should fly the space shuttle!
M: (Coughs loudly) Negro.
O: Excuse me?
M: Well, look who’s defensive.
P: (Offstage) Tell the bodyworker, thanks but no thanks! I can stick my head up there all by myself! Watch! Watch! Wa –
(Pause. The moderator repeatedly fires a staple gun at his forehead.)
M: We’re against earmarks.

I’ll tell you something that’s become abundantly clear watching this all play out. It hurts to watch something hurdle towards its own destruction. Sweet planet o’ mine, you have my sincerest apologies. We really do love you; it’s just that some of us forget we are you.

In closing:

Rest, Big O. Walkies when it's over.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

It's Getting Late

Sometimes, I sit down to write filled with a love for the world that I can’t contain. Oh precious world and its moments of celestial tenderness! Just this afternoon, I was walking Otis across a ballfield, and closed my eyes and felt the clumps of grass beneath my soles, every step different, unique, perfect. It was cool and cloudy and the softball team was stretching nearby, gearing up for a jog, and the day heaved a huge sigh and said allllllriiiiiiiight.

You see: it’s always next to you, that space of infinite perfection, that limitless forgiveness, that capacity to love. When the mind is churning it seems so far, but really, it’s always right there, bursting with its gifts.

And sometimes, I sit down and it seems that the world has lost its bearings. We’ve sacrificed all our moral courage. We’ve become a nation of fear and fearmongers, and elect our leaders based on the energy of their lies. The future is fast approaching and holding in its hands the bill for our turbo-powered lifestyles and the homes we can no longer afford and our aging and the melting, melting ice.

Can I be honest? My heart feels heavy and bruised at such moments. Tears rise up and rain down, disappear in dark gutters. We’ve been given so much to protect and squandered it on minute, inconsequential victories. We’ve cut ourselves off from the source.

But the miracle: in the next breath, we can make, again, the decision to open ourselves to grace. To the grace of a ballfield, the grace of a friend saying hey-what-up, the grace of a walnut brownie, the grace of a wind blowing leaves around your ankles, the grace of a turning car’s headlights washing across your body, the grace of a rain puddle quivering in a breeze, the grace of a dog barking in happiness when you fill his supper dish, the grace of the one blind in the window that stands in opposition to the rest, the grace of a stranger smiling at your smile, the grace of a cool metal door pressing against your fingertips just about to give, the grace of a crumpled up paper chucked at a wastebasket bouncing off the rim and off the wall, bouncing, the grace of the color green, the grace of a…

Friend, if there’s one thing you get from enduring my ramblings, I hope it’s that.

Also: Do whatever you can to elect Barack.

Horn Toot

The Unheard picked up an award. Thanks for reading.


Well then, so much going on its hard to know what to say or do. Polls bouncing like superballs, national political figures lying like a low ozone haze, students, and teachers and administrators and tests and papers and lectures and powerpoints and more geez, another niece born! Jane Aviva, welcome. You're lovely. We are trying our best to leave you with something worth the fighting for. Peter Lewis, Godspeed. You were the best. Absolutely the best. The woods animals sing your name. Brother, sometimes this life can seem like death from a thousand paper cuts. Sometimes it can seem like death from a great height, a piano dropped out of a window, a journey through dark space with no destination, no home. But you, Pete, you knew: a life is to be lived, savored, earned, bled. You knew: one kind word slays a thousand years of loneliness.