Archive for October, 2009|Monthly archive page

Manu Biosphere: Getting There

Had an amazing time in the Peruvian Amazon River Basin. After watching PBS documentaries for years on the Amazon and having an uncle and a grandfather that spent years in South America, my partner and I went to Peru.

I’m going to focus on the Amazon part of the trip. We went from Cusco into the high Andes, riding along narrow mountain roads, meeting llamas, alpacs, wild dogs, and hundreds of kids walking miles to the nearest schools. Even saw one little girl get pulled down by the pig she was holding on a leash when the pig got startled by our jeep. After six hours we got on mountain bikes

Mountain biking

Mountain biking

mountain biking

with only one operating break and road for an hour and a half to the mountain lodge.

Birds at the Lodge included a group of males that cluster at one site and sing to draw a female into the area. Reminded you of a bar.

Cloud Lodge Bird Bar

Cloud Lodge Bird Bar

After a night at the Lodge we got up at 4:30 am to ride in a jeep for a couple of hours to reach the River Basin. View of the Alto Madre de Dios River where we met some of the locals and started our four hour ride to the Madre De Dios River.

The Alto Madre de Dios River

The Alto Madre de Dios River

Jewelry vendor and friends

Jewelry vendor and friends

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Capital Culture: Dancing in DC

Kennedy Center had an intriguing dance program last night. Keigwins & Company. The show featured four dances to each of the world’s elements: Water, Fire, Earth & Air.

The Company is a viewer friendly group. The opening number featured six dancers in towels moving to Mozart. Slapstick actions and movements reminded this viewer of silent movies. The fourth water piece teased audiences with white body suits.

Fire featured three dances, one in orange, another in red and a third in yellow. The costumes included frills on the arms and hats creating a sense of flames and movement. The male dancers hip hop moves thrilled the audience.

The jokey movements returned with Debussy, the song “Stormy Weather” and Devo, in the earth elements. A friend described the pieces as musical theater comedy.

The Air pieces included performers dressed in airline costuming. The moves in the first piece to “Up, Up and Away,” included the safety demonstrations done by stewards on every flight.

Making accessible dance is a great idea as is dancing to recent music. I wish the performances included more daring and interesting steps/choreography.

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Balloon Boy & Stage Moms

We all witnessed what happens on a slow news day. The media followed the silver balloon then it fell like lead.

Why is anyone surprised the people will do anything for publicity? It is not that knew. Stage Mothers pushed their girls and boys onto vaudeville and Broadway (Have you seen Gypsy!)

Who hasn’t seen movies about Judy Garland or any of the other numerous child stars in Hollywood during the Golden Age.

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Media on Equality March

Ed Schultz interviewed Representative Tammy Baldwin on Sunday’s March and the actions of Congress on Defense of Marriage Act and Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.

Schultz hit her hard with questions about where she stood vis a vis the marchers and their impatience with the Democratic Party. The assessment is that Obama did not give details that activists wanted on when he will act on gays in the military. He could at least issue a stop loss order to cease the actions of kicking out gays.

Dan Savage appeared on Countdown with Keith Olbermann and issued a call to Obama to act. He insisted that gays/lesbians need to pressure the Democrats for action now and the public would support it.

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Equality March Success

My partner and I rearranged our trip to Peru so we could be here for the National Equality March this weekend. The March was a huge successith protestors coming in from Maine to California. The boots hit the ground and showed the numbers of gays, lesbians, and straights who believe in equal rights under the law for the United States.

Unlike previous marches on Washington the wattage of celebrity was not too high. Lady Gaga headlined the speakers. Cynthia Nixon was among the biggest names among the marchers.

Much more importantly, the President and the Congress saw that there are numbers out there who will not sit idle and watch as GLBTQ rights continue to go underserved in this country. Speakers demanded an end to Don’t Ask Don’t Tell and they spoke eloquently for marriage rights and an end to Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).

CNN, The New York Times, CSpan and the Washington Post were among the media outlets offering valuable coverage. CNN’s carried Judy Shepard’s plea. C-Span showed the entire march. Logo went black to show its solidarity. The Washington Post included an article on local gays and lesbians that want to get married and the march the next day.

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