Powerful & creative imagery
the food and education made me sad.
I have always been fascinated by these ‘world of 100 people’ things, I remember spending hours thinking through the ones on a poster at church when I was 9 or so. It really, really makes some really important stuff so blindingly clear, in numbers we can understand. And it should, I hope it does, inspire us to act.
Workers won a big victory this month in the little Washington town of SeaTac with the success of passing Referendum 1 and its signature issue to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour. The vote was certified, and it passed by 50.6% (77 votes).
The town is named for the airport located between Seattle and Tacoma. Most of the people who live in this diverse community are dependent on jobs in and around the airport. It is estimated that 6300 workers at 72 airport-related businesses in and around SeaTac will directly benefit from passage of the referendum.
The Teamsters have been trying for 13 years to organize baggage handlers and other non-union airport workers. The obstacles they had faced seemed insurmountable. They were constantly blocked by anti-union laws and regulations and the targeting of union activists. Every time they had an organizing campaign that looked successful, the rank-and-file leaders were fired or intimidated.
Airports are under the Railway Labor Act, which means unions are required to organize a certain number of airports at the same time—in this case, including Hawaii. A few years ago, they decided to go directly to the community with a workers’ rights referendum. They joined together with HERE, which was organizing the large hotels and restaurants near the airport, and SEIU, which was working to organize Seattle fast-food workers.
The current minimum wage in Washington is $9.19, which is the highest in the country. The new minimum wage will be indexed to inflation. The referendum states that the new minimum wage will take effect on Jan. 1.
We assemble into a car, my mom’s car. She sits in the back, my dad in the front. I sit in the front, in control.
She says something beneath her breath and he lashes out, but not passionately, or roaringly, just defiantly, to remind her that he opposes. He’s too old, too weak to yell like before. They talk a bit more; they each insist the other just listen. Seconds of nothing hang stalely in the air, and that’s a nod to ask me about my future plans.
My parents divorced when I was ten, I remember. My father was cleaning the bottom of the pool and my mother came outside, confidently, strong. “Leave! Get out of here. I won’t have you around the kids, anymore!” I remember hating her, if only for a little, for I was too young then to know the set of circumstances that led them down that walk. How a couple who smuggled their loved one’s on a boat one dark night into the vast Pacific could no let go like that.
My mom and dad live together, sometimes. Other times, when it’s warm and the ground beneath her feet are stable and firm, she lives in Ohio. Other times, when the work week ends and he can leave his phone on its charger, my dad loses himself in Little Sai Gon. It’s been going on for years and will go for several more. During the Thanksgiving weekend, when the family obligations were met, he left again. He left for the three days, as expected. Before coming home though, he stopped by at a family friend’s to have some beers and talk some more. My mom called, per routine and nothing more, and found out he was there. She grew increasingly disappointed that he didn’t come home at all, but I can’t figure out why.
I guess there is a love that resonates and lasts an eternity. You can hate each other forever, talk loudly and angrily and show that you’re always upset, but there’s still love there, and it will make you do stupid things.
It’s all madness and I don’t know how anyone can deal with such agony.
S A N F R A N C I S C O. C A
HAPPY T H A N K S G I V I N G
When the minutes of my eighteenth year were coming to an end, there was a race between Elaine and Christian to see who would call me first. Elaine won.
I spent the final minutes of my twenty-first birthday killing fifteen minutes at the local Seven-Eleven before the owner would sell me my pack of Blue Moon. I came with my roommates.
Last year, I was in the middle of a listening of Radiohead - Ok Computer with my then roommate Andy when it struck midnight. I didn’t check until several minutes past.
This year, sans phone and other devices that indicate the Earth’s particular revolution around the sun, midnight passed. I was in the middle of a conversation with my father, about what it’s like being old, and how I’m not as big a disappointment as originally presumed.
Here’s to getting old..
Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin — who has gone to great lengths to hype the supposed dangers of a big government takeover of American health care — admitted over the weekend that she used to get her treatment in Canada’s single-payer system.
"We used to hustle over the border for health care we received in Canada," Palin said in her first Canadian appearance since stepping down as governor of Alaska. "And I think now, isn’t that ironic?"
The irony, one guesses, is that Palin now views Canada’s health care system as revolting: with its government-run administration and ‘death-panel’-like rationing. Clearly, however, she and her family once found it more alluring than, at the very least, the coverage available in rural Alaska. Up to the age of six, Palin lived in a remote town near the closest Canadian city, Whitehorse.
Officials at several hospitals in that area declined to give out information on patient visits.
— The People You Will Fall in Love With in Your 20s (Ryan O’Connell)
“That time you confused a lesson for a soulmate.”— Dream Hampton (via de4ctivate)