Wednesday, March 14, 2012

have you seen this?

Ben Affleck writing an article (yes, you read that right) called "Westerners Are Not and Will Never Be 'Saviors' of Africa"
An excerpt:
That idea has been tried and found wanting. It is ineffectual at best and deadly at worst. The organization I founded, Eastern Congo Initiative....[blahblahblah]...We support the work being done by highly capable and determined Congolese, to make their communities a better place...Joseph Kony must be caught."

As you can tell, his writing is trite, self-serving, basic and, well, a bit obvious. But whatever. It is Ben Affleck! We should be grateful he can write at all.
I am kind of torn about these celebrity blurbs, these "I'm rich and blissfully ignorant, but once every couple years I go to a fundraiser that moves me so deeply that I visit a third world country and take pictures with devastated villagers and encourage the American public to follow my lead because I'm a big name."  I'm not saying that there isn't good will here and that all celebrities involved in causes are phonies, and organizations that help others (and allocate their funds properly) are wonderful.
I'm just a bit bored with all of the celebrity-founded/endorsed organizations floating around. We need to have one or two comprehensive funds for each cause that make it easier for people to help give and not be bewildered by the options ("Should I donate to World Vision? Or Ben Affleck's charity? Does he even know how to run a charity? Who is running it? Is Heal Africa more organized? What about Doctors Without Borders?").

Sorry, my thoughts on that were much longer than anticipated. Not that I have anything against dear old Ben, he is just a cute run-of-the-mill duffer. I love Good Will Hunting as much as the next person and that was even before his teeth got fixed.
Read his piece here

It is a live feed of penguins in Sea World!!!
There is one in particular that tends to come right up to the camera when I am watching. Call it animal magnetism, but we are internet buddies. And he is always in the same mood as me!
I was watching him this morning and feeling tired and he yawned a beaky penguin yawn and stretched his little wings!
When I am bored I catch him staring up at nothing. When I am energetic he bobs around. He doesn't hang in cliques with the other penguins much. He is a dreamer. I call him Albert.
It makes me want to work at Sea World. Bad. That has always been a dream of mine. Last time I was there a few years ago I even talked to a manager for 30 minutes about it, but to work hands-on with the animals like I want to, you need to have a degree in sociology or something similar. Isn't that interesting??

And on that note, I love watching my otter friends as well at Monterey Aquarium. I visited these guys in person when the baby was a newborn!  And you all know how much I love my otters (if you didn't before, you do now). They make me gleeful.

GIFS are little video clips on repeat. This is a collection of "the best."
My favorites: 11-13 (The Shining!), 26, 29. Don't look at #43. 47 is a bit eerie as well.

Vicky shared this with me---a huge chunk of the famous White Cliffs of Dover collapsed! And the newspaper responded with the brilliant headline: FRANCE IS EVEN FURTHER AWAY.
How unacademic is that?! As if their existence is only as a buffer between France and England.
An aerial view of the latest chalk slip at the White Cliffs of Dover

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