Re-Create It

I forgot to mention in my last post, that an art piece went missing from the New School of Colour. So I pretty much brought the rest of my art home, except for the unfinished piece that I have been working on.

Yeah, it was a bit upsetting at first. But then I figured that if my art is valued enough to steal, then maybe I should be raising my prices. It’s not even my best work. I know I can do better. There wasn’t much effort put into the piece that was taken. So it’s kind of like stealing a rough draft. I’m going to re-create it, and make it better. The mediums I originally used were pencil and chalk pastel on a matte board. Next time I want to paint it on a canvas.

It’s okay. This art piece I speak of is called “Ring Leader in Paris.” Even though it is missing, it’s already out there in the world. It’s been published in a Grit Uplifted Creative Writing and Arts magazine, Issue #3. I just hope that whoever owns it now, appreciates it. Even though, I know damn well it’s not my best, and I created it with half-ass effort. Trust me, it’s nice, but not my best. Especially after seeing what I can do after creating “Eve’s Forsaken”, and other recent art I’ve created.

Anyway, the facilitator of the program feels bad that he too couldn’t find it, so he said he was going to get me my own set of oil paints that I can take home. I seem to get more done at home anyway.

This past Monday, I was struggling with my painting. My hand kept resting on the canvas and smudging whatever it was I just painting. So I will have to go back and touch that up. Thus making this current art piece even longer to complete. It’s frustrating.  I swear I have been staring at this thing for over a year now. I’ve put it down a couple times, because got  I bored of it. I walked away from it for awhile,  because of other personal issues. That didn’t help. I was even absent from it for a good month last year from heading up north. I just want this painting done, and out of my face. Haha!

Anyway, the New School of Colour will be closed at the Ark Aid Street Mission for these next 2 Mondays, that includes today. The Ark is doing some renovations. So yeah, it seems like something always comes up to prevent me from completing this painting. If not myself, then other forces that be.

Not too much happened this week. I volunteered at the Arts Project for the Pride Festival. I just kind of stand there from start to finish, counting attendance, and greeting people.

Although I did cancel a counseling appointment to go to Niagara on the Lake for a Mass Rally to save Public Health Care.  Apparently another thing on the Governments chopping block.

It’s like the Capitalists are trying to kill off the poor discreetly. I’m sorry, I cannot let that happen. The first thought that comes to my mind are my kids. They are in their fathers care on financial assistance. Public heath care is vital for people living within poverty, or lower. Is this a part of the Capitalists  “Population Stabilization” plan? Making it so that only the wealthy have access to health care. As Occupy has said; The Rich get richer, the poor get poorer. But in this case, The rich get rich, and the poor die. Every life is valuable, and has something to offer. Don’t let a bunch of Capitalists kill you off just because their brains are so corrupted by greed that they no longer value life.

People don’t have to die, just because “Authorities” playing God saying who lives, who dies,  think we are over-populating. Their only concern is their money. Which is why I say take away what the greedy value so much, money and oil. There is no reason why we can’t move onto other energy resources, they obviously exist. Too much of anything can be harmful, it’s not like our options aren’t there.

Anyway, this past weekend I got to witness bartering within my community. People trading what they don’t need for things they do. It was awesome. It was called the Really Really Free Market, which took place at East Village Arts Collective.

I know East London has a bad reputation. But there is something beautiful about it. I actually see people coming together. I see a community. People gather and make positive things happen. It’s also comforting knowing that I am not just ranting crazy shit, other people share the same views within the community.

Sure there is a homeless crowd, drug addicts and alcoholics in the area, but also there are people like myself, fighting and rebelling against a system that’s been around too long, before we could even choose. A rebellion doesn’t  always have to be a rowdy riot. It could be gardening, bartering, creating. It could be growth.  – Pooks

“They always say time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself.”- Andy Warhol

EOA

Advertisements

Swamped, but Interesting

Well I didn’t get an application form into the Home County Festival to be a volunteer, matter of fact, I didn’t even make it to that event.

Although, I did manage to fax NNEC accepting their offer to financially support me during school, paying for my tuition and books. So I just need to find a part-time job. So far, no luck. I don’t know how many online applications I’ve done, even with a new spiffy resume, and more recent experience, not a peep from any employers.

Maybe I shouldn’t have answered that question asking wither or not I’m aboriginal. Why should that matter anyways?

Anyway, I’m going to try not to stress about it. The Indigenous Services did offer support, and if I continue to struggle, they will help by referring me to some employers.  That will be my last resort, my back up, if all else fails.

Besides that, on Tuesday I went to a gathering at Victoria Park. It was one of those events posted on Facebook. #HoodiesUp A Vigil/ Rally for Trayvon & Marrisa. I don’t know much about the Marissa case. But I believe Trayvon’s killer is guilty. You cannot tell me Zimmerman didn’t have a choice. Today’s society is unfair to coloured people. I read a comment on facebook, someone said the “It’s not justice, the system really means “just us.” It’s a shame that Trayvons family don’t get justice, and Trayvons murderer is set free. Zimmerman could have been the adult in the situation, and just drive, or walk away.

I know there’s some protesters that believe that this is a distraction. Being flashed all over the media, so that our focus is teared away from other matters. But I went to give my respect to a life that shouldn’t have died the way it did. I’ve always believed that you should respect the dead.

Plus, what happened in Trayvons case, is kind of a wake up call of reality, of the system I face. It really exposed itself for how judgmental it is, on colour, on weight (they really picked on Trayvon’s friend for her weight and hair style & interrogated her for 7 hours straight). The colour of skin, one’s appearance, should have had nothing to do with the case. You’d think our system would be able to see past that. No. How sad is that?

Anyway, the #HoodiesUp Vigil/ Rally for Trayvon & Marissa turned out to be rather peaceful. We sat in a circle, lit candles, and ate skittles. I silently prayed.  After I am done having a cigarette, I sprinkle the  remaining tobacco and pray. I prayed that Trayvons family do get justice in some way, and they do find peace in their hearts. I prayed that Trayvon finds his way in the afterlife.

It’s sad how much hate is in this world, and quite honestly, I think the Bible is responsible for a huge part of it. That’s just my opinion. Ya know? Because Jesus is supposedly white.  Amazing how powerful a book can be. It’s got the world wrapped around it’s finger. Maybe it’s not so good after all, and it is actually evil.

Anyway, I’ve ranted so many times on what I think about that. Onto something else. My Summer Orientation and Tour at the University. I thought I was going to be extremely late, but I actually made it. It get’s me excited about the experiences ahead. I’ve met other mature students that will be attending, as well as someone,  named Beth, who knows someone I know, and about the New School of Colour. She seemed rather interested in speaking with me, and wanted to see what I do. So I told her to look up Pooks82, she’ll find me.

The tour wasn’t as overwhelming as I thought it would be.  Our tour guides, which were 2 University students, they did a good job.  I took down some notes at the orientation, to try to remember some of the resources available in case that time does come where I will need assistance with something. Which I am more than sure that time will come. This will all be totally new to me. Plus, one of the reasons I didn’t do so well at Fanshawe College a decade ago, was because I was too afraid to ask for help. That’s not going to happen this time.

On Wednesday I saw my kids, as I do every Wednesday. I gave them M&M’s and grape juice. They like to pretend the M&M’s are coconuts, or whatever else their great imaginations come up with. Then we played tag, actually a game called “Tickle Monster.” Where I am “It” throughout the game, and I chase and tickle. They love it.

My son did get a rug burn on his stomach from my daughter and I trying to pick him up and carry him to the other side of the room. It was one of the many things we do. My son thinks it’s funny because it is challenging to do. He’s heavy, so he got dragged. But while he got dragged, his shirt lifted and his stomach slid across the rug. Thus causing the rug burn. Luckily we found ice in the freezer. It wasn’t severe, more like a light pinkish burn, so not red. Still, enough to make my son uncomfortable, but the ice did help a bit. Note for next visit – No dragging.

I had an Ontario Works appointment this week. My worker and I were trying to see if Ontario Works will support me as a part time student. I have a feeling it’s not likely. Ontario Works will support if your term is 1-2 years. But I’m pretty sure Arts and Humanities goes to 4 years.

I keep having all these workers ask me, why didn’t apply as a full-time student? Because the Ontario Works worker I had before the one I have now suggested it. Matter of fact, she was a bit discriminative, and didn’t want me to register at all. She kept saying “Oh, but you’re not ready.” “You’re nowhere near ready”.  But in the back of my head all I could hear was what a worker from the Women’s Community House said to me years ago. “Don’t wait until the perfect time. It will never be the perfect time. You just have to go for it.” So I remained persistent about wanting to go to school, and this worker finally cracked a bit, and suggested part time. Apparently that will make things a bit difficult and challenging for my first year. But according to Indigenous Services, I can move up to be a full-time student next year if I do well this year.

On Friday I was supposed to get all dressed up for interview practice at Leads. I missed my appointment. My own fault. I tend to put other peoples needs before myself. So I was getting bombarded with messages from people, when I should have said that I am busy. Sure it’s nice of me, but that kind of thing seems to backfire on my ass every time I need to make myself a priority.

I was supposed to do homework, figure out how to answer 5 questions for this interview practice. But only managed to browse through them  the night before. Anyway, it was a bit of a frustrating morning for me. All dolled up and uncomfortable. I think this interview process is ridiculous, dress up, be fake, get a job. So, I did manage to do that, but the heels slowed me down, I missed the bus… I decided to say “Fuck it!” and go home and change into something more comfortable. By the time I’d get to my appointment, it would have been over by then.

Speaking of homework, I am also to practice my breathing exercises. That hasn’t happened yet either. As well as self-care. I suppose some things I’ve done can be qualified as self-care. Walking, a form of exercise. I’ve been posting poetry, older poetry even, so it seems to show me where I’ve been, and how far I’ve come. My photography, I do as a recreational activity. It keeps me entertained. But it allows me to be creative, and to seek things out.

I do feel a bit over booked. Do this! Do that! I am suddenly back where I was years ago, surrounded by workers with expectations getting me to jump through numerous hoops. It can get a tad bit over-whelming.

Anyway, My sister’s pregnant, and sometimes needs reassurance that whatever she’s experiencing is completely normal. Plus, sometimes she feels lonely. And even though I’m not physically there for her, I am still there for her. Just a text, or phone call away.

I had a friend that wanted me to help out with a garage sale. Which I did put some slides in some boxes, that never even made in the garage sale. I guess she wants to document them first before she sells them. I didn’t even make it to the garage sale. I was exhausted, and overslept. Missing the garage sale entirely. Luckily, it went well without me.

I did manage to get my friend out to a community event. She doesn’t really get involved in the community. She feels she doesn’t fit in. Still, we had a good time at the Old East Village Block Party. I took some pictures, ate some food, watched some bands play live. It was cool.

I thought it was interesting that she said she feels like an alien that fell from Mars. I told her that is kinda like what I say about myself, I’m an alien that fell out of my U.F.O.  I’ve been saying that for years. It use to annoy my sister. I would point at a flickering star, or satellite, whatever it was, and say that was my U.F.O hovering without me. Haha!

Anyway, after the Old East Village Block party, I chilled with my friend on her porch for a while. But then parted ways, because I didn’t want to sit still. So I left, and went for a long walk down a bicycle trail. It was a perfect evening for a walk, because it wasn’t too hot. The weather was actually tolerable.

I could walk forever if I wanted to. I walk till I’m practically doing a zombie shuffle to get back home. So today I am taking the day to recuperate my muscles, and so that the blisters can heal. I should be back out and about tomorrow, ready to take on another interesting week. – Pooks

“Our most significant opportunities will be found in times of greatest difficulty.” – Thomas S. Monson

Hither

Reality hasn’t sunk in yet, of me actually believing I am in fact a student of U.W.O as of this coming Fall.

I have been accepted. I am registered for my courses. I even got confirmation that NNEC will pay for my tuition and books. So I just need to find that part-time job for living expenses and art supplies.

I don’t know, maybe attending an orientation will make me believe that this is actually happening.

Besides that, my Leads worker gave me an excellent idea, which is to try to volunteer at the upcoming Home County Music and Arts Festival. As well as hand out resumes there, because that seems to be right in my field of interest, art. I downloaded an application form to be a volunteer, I just need to make my way to the library to print it off. I’ll need to go to the library anyways, to print off a form for me to sign confirming that I accept NNEC’s assistance.

Counseling is going well, I think. My counselor wants to work on changing the way I think. I will trust her. I sure as hell didn’t trust the church when they tried. I do value my individuality. I would rather be different, than blend in. I don’t want that to be tampered with. I am not a sheep. I’m not a clone. I seem to be more wild than that, and perhaps I am meant to be. That I do believe. Although, there are some thought patterns that could use some work. Probably why I draw in negative people, and why I often get confused for prey, or a pushover. Which I am definitely not, and those that do think these of me, usually get a nasty surprise at some point. Something I learned over the years, sometimes you got to be mean. If you’re too nice all the time, people take advantage, and think they can walk all over you.

Trust is a huge thing for me, I trust so few. I am very picky on who it is I will trust. I will spend a lot of time observing, and analyzing people and their actions. Determining if I am safe or not. It could take months, years even. So trusting my counselor so soon, that is going to be a huge step.

Anyway, I think we are bonding. I like her, she seems nice. Plus, the fact that I actually get out of bed to attend these appointments, that says something itself. It actually means I want to be there.

What else? I went to Sunfest, and this year did something I never did before. There was a Spanish band performing live, and there were people dancing in front of the stage. To my right, I saw a round dance. At first I watched it, observing how the people moved, and the smiles on their faces. It drew me right in, and next thing you know, I was a part of it. I’m really glad I did join in, it was really fun.

As the night progressed, it began to rain. But still the people danced, and I did as well. I was dancing with complete strangers and enjoyed every moment of it.

Yesterday I returned to the New School of Colour at the Ark Aid Street Mission. I had received a message from a friend, and old facilitator of the program, Hailey. She had moved to Montreal, but was visiting for a few days for Sunfest. Anyway, she said she was going to stop in at the New School of Colour that evening, and she’d hope to see me. At first it was a bit awkward returning there. There are some members I no longer associate with. Mainly one, but the other doesn’t like to get caught in the middle of things, so I backed right off and let her go as well. I basically just got all my art together to take home. For the rest of the evening I socialized with other artists. As well as assist one with mixing colours.

When Hailey did show, there were some surprised faces. That was awesome. While she was there she drew an amazing portrait of Walter and gave it to him as a gift. That was sweet.

After the program was finished for the night, she drove me and my art home. It was nice seeing her again. Good luck to her out in Montreal, she finally got accepted into the program she wanted. She’s another step closer to achieving her dream. Her advice, was basically not to give up. To be persistent about my goals. If you want something, you keep trying. So yeah, when it comes to this joint custody thing, I’m not backing down. My children deserve their mother.

I’m not sure how much longer I will be able to attend the New School of Colour, especially when I start school. I won’t be able to attend Wednesday mornings anymore, I will be in my sociology class when that takes place. As for Monday evenings, that depends on what hours I get when I find work. Plus, I am going to have to figure out how to work other things around that schedule as well, such as my Leads appointments, and counseling.

I will try not to think too much about it. When I do think too much about something, my anxiety tends to go through the roof, and I make myself physically nauseous. I don’t want that. I need to try my best to make this transition as smooth as possible. So yes, remain in the present, lets not get to far ahead shall we!

Oh yeah! Before I forget, I went to my first First Nation Housing Co-op meeting as one of the Board of Directors. It was nice meeting the other members, and yeah, they were getting me all caught up on what has been going on. Basically, my job is to decide what is best for the co-op, along with the rest of the Board of Directors. Yeah, I can do that. Maybe it’s not going to be as hard as I expected it to be.

It was funny because the night prior was the night I was dancing in the rain.  I threw my shoes in the dryer and on the way to this meeting, I got caught in a down pour. Not exactly how I wanted to show up to my first meeting, soaking wet. Haha! But hey, I wasn’t the only one. I just thought it was funny, all that effort to dry my shoes, just to be soaked in the rain anyways.

It was a good first meeting. I felt welcomed, and encouraged. So yeah, glad to be a part of the team. It is another opportunity to learn new things, and I love to learn. So yeah, perfect for a little sponge like me.

Anyway, to get completely off topic here, if you visit my weebly website, http://pooks82.weebly.com/ , you may notice I wrote a poem about how I love to go for walks,  and I try to portray what I see. I am going to end this blog, with a link that leads you to another site. It’s just nice to see that another artist out there see’s nature the way I do, and since he’s a photographer, he can capture that beauty. – Pooks

http://njw.ca/archives/767

“Acknowledging the good that you already have in your life is the foundation for all abundance.”- Eckhart Tolle

A Fool in a Crowd

So yesterday was Canada Day, and I did something different this year. I dressed up in my Halloween Costume from last year,  a Jester, and went out to protest with the National Stop Harper Campaign. It was an event called: Save Canada Day. The people there were very welcoming. I seen people from The Indignants, Occupy, even a couple artists I recognized from the New School of Colour, and East Village Arts Collective. There were coloured people there, but I was the only native (First Nation Aboriginal). It surprised me that I didn’t see more, such as people that support Idle No More. Still, the protesters were supportive. Even shouting things like “Support the First Nations!” It doesn’t matter what grassroots group you support, we want the same thing.  We want the “Harper Government” gone. I guess that’s what I like about “People vs Greed”, another movement working to unite the grassroots together.

Why dress as a jester? Why not? The Capitalists see anyone below their class as a joke. They do not listen to the people, or take them seriously. We are seen as “sheep” to manipulate, exploit, and control. Our lives get taken for granted, and used as pawns. For example: our soldiers that get sent off to battle their fights, our “leaders” are too cowardly to communicate with their own “opponents” apparently. If you haven’t noticed, war is not about fighting for freedom. It has become fighting for money. For profits. For oil. Material things that are not worth giving someones life over for.

Someone I follow on Twitter once said something like; No one ever says “Oh no! Here comes a fool.” Pretty much stating that no one will fear a fool. But someone could say: “Oh no! There’s the pain in my ass! ” Or thorn in my side. A fool may not be feared, but they can inspire a mass of people. Fear is not the tactic we want to use anyway, that’s what the Capitalists use. That would defeat the whole purpose. So kudos to the people I met yesterday, reaching out,  sharing what they know, and being inspiring. Even in the rain.

I am reminded of my favorite book “The Jester” by James Patterson and Andrew Gross. Even though it is fiction, it is inspiring. One fool can ignite a flame and inspire others.

There was a homeless man sitting across the street from us. A police officer had stopped and talked to him. What? Did he seem out of place or something?! He wasn’t doing anything wrong, just sitting there. So one of the protesters did an admirable thing, and ran over and gave the man sitting there money. It may not have been enough to “live off of”, but enough for some food at least. I made sure I held my sign real high as this took place. “People v.s Greed.”

Even if I don’t succeed in making some kind of difference, I will at least be able to look back one day and proudly say: “I am one of those who have tried.”

It was awesome hearing others opinions. They were very close to my own. Someone said we should vote for Justin Trudeau next time. Which led someone to speak up and say: What if he does the same? And basically saying we need to get rid of the system entirely, and start over. Close to what I had in mind, I think money should be burned, and oil should be forgotten. Then maybe we would be able to truly start over, and move on to better energy resources than oil. Take away the possessions that make the greedy so greedy, and maybe they will finally value the things that truly matter in this world. Maybe without money, there wouldn’t be separate “classes” that divide us. Maybe people would actually work together on rebuilding as one big giant community. I know, it’s a dream. It’s a pretty good one too. I’m allowed to dream.

Ya know? I may not have my children on a regular basis, it doesn’t stop me from trying to provide them the future they deserve. – Pooks

Below are some links that may help you understand what I was protesting against.

Shit Harper Did – www.shd.ca

Why Not Harper – www.whynotharper.ca

Harper Crimes – www.harpercrimes.ca

Oil Sands Reality Check – www.oilsandsrealitycheck.org

Idle No More – www.idlenomore.ca

Occupy Together – http://www.occupytogether.org/aboutoccupy/#issues

People v.s Greed – http://www.peoplevsgreed.com/