Thursday, September 9, 2021

Snakes in the Garden


How even the best of intentions can fail 
Every day now is a struggle for many Americans who must cope with the prevalent surreality --- if they are awake! How many of us are not awake, because we are forced into a mold that disallows us the privilege of thinking for ourselves much less with expression?
Examples of surrealism abound for those who are half-way awake. We just withdrew from a country where we have held a twenty year occupation which we really had no right to invade in the first place, but where a lot of collective punishment took place. We did get a lot of dope that helped fuel the opioid crisis which Dr. Fauci was somehow involved in, just as he is somehow involved with big pharmaceutical companies today. But Dr. Fauci is a tutelary god according to the mainstream media. He would never have any kind of conflict of interests since he is above scrutiny. 
Should we take the mainstream media seriously? I haven't wanted to broach this awful subject, afterall, it's a well known fact, according to the establishment media, that only losers could hold a gripe. Consider that a number of alternative news channels have been yanked off the air by YouTube (Google). They include holistic medicine doctors, experts with a different take on Covid-19 than the mainstream media, news channels leaning too far right, left, and libertarian. They yanked off Corbett Report and Corbett Report Extras probably because the truthstream was too believable on false flag events such as the Oklahoma City bombing. They are biding their time to take on AE911 (Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth). Google is also manipulating and scrambling search results. They just threw in jail another British whistleblower reporter, Craig Murray, essentially because he drew attention to the wrongs against Wikileaks founder Julian Assange. 
A private gripe about alternative news sites is well meaning as they seem, they often are a mirror image of the mainstream media or worse, particularly where fair representation of news by minority reporters are concerned. While they may seem like hipsters, more often than not, there are no news published by Asian American reporters. It's not like we don't try---it is more like they refuse to accommodate us. They deliberately perpetuate the stereotype that we cannot read or write, even if the Times of India, or CGTN displays plenty of evidence that Asian female journalists do exist, can ask hard questions, and are articulate.

The mixed messages by our society are crushing the will of the people on purpose. It's like traveling along a gravelly road filled with potholes, while you are trying to drive to a destination. There is a sense of drag, of foreboding, of being intentionally weighted down, even in the midst of disaster. I've showed you my favorite photo, right?

1.5C to 2C of warming --- between a rock and a hard place in priorities!
Most of the DC residents don't like to talk about climate change. Especially when they see Asians, they love to herd us into their lockstep monologue about careerisms. An older well-intentioned black woman tugged at my elbow yesterday on Metro and queried me quite seriously about whether I was still at my job at McGraw-Hill. What? We are passing strangers, and I am heading down the escalator...I quickly tell her no, but not enough time to explain, never worked there! But clearly, all she identified about me was a face and title! I was not privileged with being human! I know a lot of blacks (and other people) who are like this in DC. They really don't see Asians as humans! But when they talk to each other, they will talk the time of day, the good food places, the hum-drum of life, crack jokes, and all that other nice stuff that human beings regard as human conversation!
So these jolts, both microscopic and macroscopic, take an effort to mindfully fight off and push back. You don't have time to say, Hey, you just interrupted me while I was chanting my mindfulness mantra! Do you really think that is all I am supposed to be to you? How about you allowing me to share with you that there are roads less travelled in life, and I have a great future, because every day, I have the chance to cultivate and learn about virtue?
There would, I imagine, be an incomprehensible look on that woman's face. We are taught to focus, our mouths attached to the great whale of belly fat of provisions, to focus like lamphreys on gorging ourselves with what we can get for ourselves. That is the measure of our success in life!
The mixed messages have only intensified whether in media, daily life, and social messaging from our well-intentioned "minders." Especially in transitional/permanent supportive housing, the minding is quite intense. This is because the bull-market really does not like the idea of housing priced at a maximum of 30% of one's income. In fact, they hate it to death, literally! And now, with the ending of unemployment benefits, even with new buildings going up while older ones are torn down, evicted tenants will have to make do with a tent resting on the hard pavement because if they got to live inside a building, it might make instill within them too many expectations!
Residents in permanent supportive housing are routinely publicly shamed! We have very class-conscious residents, people who like the lamphreys mentioned above, have that weird materialistic judgmental glaze in their eyes wherever they happen to trot by with their dogs. You even seen them inside the church, virtuously praying louder, singing in their slightly offtune soprano, and staring with hostile eyes at any identifiable misfit. Their love is like 1/4-inch thick or less. They see a yellow-person, the age, the garb, the probable socio-economic income, and like human calculators, they dole out a welcome at the presumed consumer value.
You just made my day feel a bit more surreal! I am not going to take your bait though! I am going to walk out, take a deep breath, and realize that I need to pray for you because your spiritual development is....
But you see, spirituality of the good kind no longer has much use in our society. The bad kind is definitely popular, but the good kind engenders laughs and guffaws practically. So these teenaged girls are mocking me for some reason, and it's the same reason as once, a long time ago, I saw these teens at the National Zoo, a breaktime from Edmund Burke high school in DC, and they were seriously hating on this poor little Chinese baby. I never saw such flames of hate oozing from their eyes. It was because the little Chinese baby boy looked beautific, angelic, innocent, sweet, and oh my gosh, happy! 

It's a crime for Chinese people to be successful or happy in healthy ways nowadays. That's why any good news from China is heavily censored. It's a crime for the establishment news to report on Chinese accomplishments in a positive tone and perspective. No news about the travels of Chinese astronauts to their very own space station, underreported news about China's bullet trains, and if there is too much good news coming from China, the deep state might even order a "deep state hit." I kind of think that is what happened near Hualien in Taiwan. The connection to a deep state can be remote---it can be the orders from demons from another dimension. Our minds may not be mind-controlled, but our hearts are...

And so this is the case also close-up in our housing complex. We see these staffspersons whose official job is to care for the needs of the residents, develop programs, implement guidelines, etc. In reality, they spend a great deal of time, sort of like how we used to spend time bull-shitting at the Lion's Club, and with a 20% efficiency at actual doing. But it's worse than that at times, because whereas every member of the Lion's Club sort of comes with the notion of relaxing and socializing, here we have a very strange if not perverse indoctrination taking place. All kind of hidden jargon and innuendo, and with deeply troubled insulting behaviours and mannerisms towards the residents. Staff will rarely if ever greet the residents (especially those whose 1/4" surface is lighter toned). When they rush by, if they do happen to glance at you, it is with a very condescending look on their face. And ideally, they train any guest to behave towards us with the most patronizing, agonized stare of disgust and contempt at our piteous state of poverty. If we question their gaze, their tone, or expect them to talk to us like human co-equals, they will escalate and try to write us up!

I have tried to rationalize with the staff (there is really only one major staffperson who runs the show, even though there may be four people reporting to her) that (poor) students living in student housing will often be treated with respect and genuine positive support. I have brought up ethics and fairness. Recently I did bring up religion, but was rudely brushed off. 

In the style of disaster capitalism, authoritarian types love to exert total power over the powerless. And of course, absolute power corrupts absolutely! Our one and only case manager/social worker has re/written the program guidelines so that she is mentioned on every single page at least once, and there is nothing that she cannot monitor, find out, or control about us because it is capitalized that she is our SOURCE, CHALLENGER, and GUIDE. She claims to know all about us from our past, and will therefore be the indispensible determinant for our future.We must turn to her, rather than to our peers for solace, comfort, and direction. She is our collective Big Sister because evidently she has the power and capability to moderate all things.

The program overview and design is not written by one hand though---it is the intention of the staff to make it appear so, however, fully knowing that the sense of power and authority emanating from one-figure will work to over-awe the residents. 

And so it didn't matter that at some point, I was able to garner permission to establish some space in the garden for a House community garden. Over the summer, I did have success in this space. I planted about 20 different plants and herbs, created a clear plot, nurtured the tree-lings, and even wrote up a grant application. Recently, I even put in a small cold frame for over-wintering, which I personally designed and built. In fact, I have done about 80% of the total work, although my resident-comrades have been supportive particularly with ideas, enthusiasm, and just the sense of general empowerment. 
Well, that is exactly what the staff, meaning the SW, is not happy about right now. After furnishing them a copy of the grant, they pretended that nothing had been given to them. Of course this is easy since they never even greet us in passing. They pretend that no email with a grant report was delivered. They will probably never think of saying "thank-you" since obviously, if I am seen working happily in the garden, that is sort a crime! (Not to mention that I am an Asian, too----most DC blacks consider Chinatown, DC, not really Chinatown, but homie-town.) My presence is gratuitous --- I am an invisible tutelary!

And the thing that I think really ticked her off is that the report mentions that the theme of this garden, Washington Senior Garden Corps, is that it will be resident-led, and resident-centered, in order to heal from several recent deaths. It's a concept from the teacher inspired student-centered theory. But there's more to that, which is that if the authority cannot be totalitarian, with our unquestioning conformity, then the adage cannot be successful:


Absolute power CORRUPTS absolutely!

So that's the moral of the story. She is going to try and close the garden down if she can because it's too painful to see residents being independent, self-empowered, and using their time to recreate outside their room besides sitting inside their room watching TV. In fact, soon after I moved in, she had once asked why I didn't just adjust to life at my age and start watching more TV? Forget that the library has pretty much nothing-books and trashy videos, in fact, they work at consciously furnishing the rack with serial women-consumer magazines. They don't really like to furnish us books of intellectual quality, and outright discourage community activisms.

Maybe I will have to buy a pet frog for the garden. It will be a rock-frog, then it will never have to be cared, and I can maybe blow a kiss at it every day, hoping it will turn into a contemporary version of the Prince. That might make her jealous too though, but yeah, if her future and mine and all of ours here must meld, since she really wants to control our Fate, then I do have to pray to the Prince of Peace. Forget about the ill-intentions of the Queen deliberately trying to downsize my hopes and dreams, or the suffering the stink-eye looks that the Regents give us when they do see the 1/20 woman who manages to risk actually cooking in the kitchen during the daytime.