Hey, Mom! The Explanation.

Here's the permanent dedicated link to my first Hey, Mom! post and the explanation of the feature it contains.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #392 - Restricted Frequency 034: Head's Up (or Down)

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #392 - Restricted Frequency 034: Head's Up (or Down)

Hi Mom,

I was going save this post until I finished reading the first two chapters of The Solar Grid comic, but I need a quick post, and this one is ready to go, and I believe that this is a run on sentence.

I have read part of the first chapter of the comic.

It's good. I want to re-read and finish both, but for now, I share this. The creator of The Solar Grid has a web site (see GANZEER below) and a newsletter (that you can sign up for from the web site). It's interesting stuff.

So, in the mindset of providing content, I present here one of the Ganzeer's newsletters. But first, links to stuff.



G a n z e e r ' s


Kelsey has a friend in Nigeria, an American academic, who was tasked with selecting Nigerian students to come to the US on a Fullbright scholarship.

Upon being informed that he was chosen, one particular student asked what kind of measures the program has in place for security concerns. Asked to elaborate, the student said it bluntly: Would he –as a Nigerian black man– be safe on an American campus? Are there any measures taken to guarantee his safety?

This, of course, is usually the attitude of Americans sent on Fullbright scholarships outside the United States.

I should note that Nigeria is where the extremist militant organization known as Boko Haram has been active since 2009.

* * *

A bomb went off in Baghdad last Sunday, killing some 250 people. While the news did make the headlines for a bit, it didn't really result in the kind of social media solidarity upheavals that other cities get.

* * *

Good tweet from Chris Weston the other day, who's mad illustration skills I admire to no end (Read: THE MINISTRY OF SPACE). While I agree with Chris that the work we create can definitely alter the narrative of the world we live in, I'm not so sure that creating positive uplifting work is the only way to go about it.

It is sometimes used as an argument for turning a blind eye to the world we live in. I suppose if one was to go the uplifting route, it would have to be the conclusion of a particularly negative story/setting. But that could possibly imply that stories that end with doom and gloom do not contribute to rewriting the social narrative, but you take any of J.G. Ballard's works which almost always escalate to the most horrific outcomes imaginable, as a way of acting as a sort of societal warning sign (Read:KINGDOM COME).

I mean if you want people to stay away from the high voltage electric box, your design will not feature a happy smiling child. You're gonna want to put a death skull or electric bolt on the damn thing. Or if you want it to be clear that the road ends with a cliff, then:

This is how the human mind operates.

But even if one's sole concern was to create a work of pure humor and/or entertainment (everyone doing comedy in Hollywood?) that doesn't necessarily mean that it has to be detached from current societal concerns, as Charlie Chaplin excellently demonstrated time and time again (Watch: MODERN TIMES).

* * *

Hey look, a video trailer for THE SOLAR GRID. Do feel free to spread it far and wide.

* * *

This is a late 19th century political cartoon from an Egyptian paper/zine, ABU NADDARA ZARQA (The Man in the Blue Glasses). It depicts the ruler of Egypt auctioning off the Pyramid and the Sphinx before a crowd of foreign bidders. This was 1879, just three years before the British invasion of Egypt. The ruler, Khedive Ismail, had embarked on a series of overly ambitious projects throughout the country for which he had borrowed huge sums of money from British and French banks. Some of these projects included the expansion of Cairo's then Western edge , which was modeled on the city of Paris (currently Downtown Cairo), the founding of Ismailia, the inauguration of the Suez Canal (which reportedly involved a lavish ceremony of unprecedented scope), and the failed campaign in Ethiopia with the assistance of US confederates (Read: A CONFEDERATE SOLDIER IN EGYPT).

As public opinion in Egypt towards the Khedieve grew sour, ABU NADDARA ZARQA, a handwritten satirical publication began circulation. According to this NEW YORKER article, "the paper was wildly popular in Egypt: peasants crowded into coffee shops to hear it read aloud, and sheikhs were rumored to hide it in their turbans. 'It was in every barrack, in every Government-office,' a British observer reported in the late eighteen-seventies. 'In every town and village it was read with the liveliest delight.'"

The country ended up incurring a national debt of 100 million sterling, and the Khedive was forced to agree to concessions that included the appointment of British and French officials in his cabinet. This was 1878, the same year that the publisher of ABU NADDARA survived two assassination attempts on his life and fled to Paris.

Eight weeks later, however, new issues of the paper reappeared in Egypt, albeit in a smaller format that was easier to smuggle into the country. It is said that the paper inspired Ahmed Urabi, a disaffected general who several years later led what is now known as the Urabi Revolt, which in 1882 culminated in a war between Urabi's troops and Great Britain, which sent over 40,000 soldiers to quell the revolt, and subsequently, officially occupy Egypt until 1936 (or 1956, depending on your version of history).

I suppose Art-as-Magic can sometimes backfire like that.

Interestingly enough, while everyone in Egypt knows about the Urabi revolt, the British invasion of the country, and Khedive Ismail's extensive borrowing, very few know about ABU NADDARA or the man behind it: Yacoub Sanua (or James Sanua), an Egyptian Freemason Jew who was also a play-write and knew something like a dozen languages.

* * *

Also, history has a way of repeating itself:

* * *


Very much enjoying reading FECUND HORROR by Noah Berlatsky, which drops on Monday, July 11 in ebook format. It's 159 pages of fantastic essays on slasher/gore films, which even if you're not necessarily into, the essays are entertaining unto themselves and provide for an excellent analytical view of a genre that many think to be devoid of meaning. The films that Noah talks about are ripped open, cleared of their bowels with their strange attractors exposed and held up to the light to be observed, admired, and simultaneously laughed at. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

The advance premier of THE NIGHT OF on HBO is really fucking good. You know something bad is going to happen from the get go, but nothing really does for a very long time. The unnerving feelings deep in your chest are carried forth for longer than you think is humanly possible, and you find yourself growing with anxiety. Kelsey was literally squirming next to me screaming "I CAN'T TAKE THIS ANYMORE."

She claims she doesn't want to watch it again, but I have a hunch that she very much will.

THE NIGHT OF is excellent television.


I'm Afraid of Americans – David Bowie.

* * *

Kelsey and I are making some progress debranding the house. If, like me, you're something of a scatterbrain, this is a wonderful way to declutter your mind. Try it.

* * *

That is all for now. Let's try to keep our heads down and survive the weekend, okay?

Los Angeles, California
Enjoy RESTRICTED FREQUENCY? Enlist worthy friends by sharing this pathway: ganzeer.com/restricted


Reflect and connect.

Have someone give you a kiss, and tell you that I love you.

I miss you so very much, Mom.

Talk to you tomorrow, Mom.


- Days ago = ## days ago

- Bloggery committed by chris tower - date - time

NOTE on time: When I post late, I had been posting at 7:10 a.m. because Google is on Pacific Time, and so this is really 10:10 EDT. However, it still shows up on the blog in Pacific time. So, I am going to start posting at 10:10 a.m. Pacific time, intending this to be 10:10 Eastern time. I know this only matters to me, and to you, Mom. But I am not going back and changing all the 7:10 a.m. times. But I will run this note for a while. Mom, you know that I am posting at 10:10 a.m. often because this is the time of your death.
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