What’s Up On Hump Day!

July 30, 2008 at 7:09 pm Leave a comment

Mid-Week Highlights!

It’s SYTYCD tonight–Top 6! Mark and Courtney are likely in trouble, but let’s see if there’s another upset this week. They will all need to be in top form tonight, and the choreography will make or break them. I hope we get Mandy Moore back. Can’t wait … I’ll try to get my review up quickly this week, but I’m in post-vacation mode at work, and so quite busy. So check in again here frequently (bookmark the site or subscribe to my feed–look up and to the right; it’s the orange box that says “posts”).

I’ve added a daily quotation to the page, and I’m keeping these on a static sub-page called “WoW” (Words of Wisdom) Archive. I’m pulling these from some of my own personal faves that I’ve been collecting for years. You will see lots of Oscar Wilde and Mark Twain, some snark, and many that are inspirational to me about art, culture and the flaws and foibles of human nature. Many of them have a double, or triple, meaning. I like things that can be interpreted multiple ways. Ambiguity. Random juxtaposition. These things, in and of themselves, inspire creativity and lateral thinking.

What I’m reading right now: Blindness, José Saramago. It’s a bit harrowing, but I trust the reviews I’ve read (and the fact that it won a Nobel Prize for Literature). It feels to me very much like Cormac McCarthy’s The Road. Possibly even bleaker. It has been made into a movie (another one that will be premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival) starring one of my favourite actresses, Julianne Moore, Mark Ruffalo and Gael Garcia Bernal. I will be doing my darndest to get to see this one and The Secret Life of Bees, also premiering here in September. Ideally, I will have a review of the novel up sometime on the weekend.

And now, for something truly uplifting: After the jump.

The bond between humans and animals is something that I feel passionately about. It is an integral part of my life philosophy and my core belief in our ethical responsibility to care for each other and the planet we share. I despise the anthropomorphism that sees people dress their dogs up in doll clothes, or treat their cats as surrogate children. But I do believe that the ability to see animals–from fish to rodents to dogs to elephants to … you name it–as sentient, thinking, feeling creatures worthy of respect and yes, love, is a mark of character. It enriches us in ways that extend far beyond the companionship, pleasure and unconditional love that a pet can bring, and connects us with a bigger relationship to the rest of our species and to the entire continuum of life on the planet and in the universe.

We, homo sapiens, are animals. We come into existence, learn, grow, behave, live and die in accordance with principles that are fundamentally the same for all other living creatures. We have evolved from the smallest, simplest life form billions of years ago to co-exist now on a planet that supports a multitude of other life forms of equal complexity and representing a mindbending diversity. The differences among human beings–race, colour, creed, gender–are infinitesimal when compared to our commonalities, not just within our own species, but across species.

And still, we are–human beings–contributing to the destruction of our planet and our fellow life forms at a pace that is increasing exponentially with each year that goes by. Millions of years in evolving, we are likely going to be extinct, and to drive every other living creature to extinction, in a micro-fraction of the time that it has taken us to evolve. This is why I am an ardent, if hypocritical (car-driving) environmentalist. I will write more in the days and weeks to come about what we can all do to slow down the planetary suicide we are collectively committing.

In the meantime, here’s a reminder of the mysterious, powerful connections we have with each other, across species and across time.

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Entry filed under: Books, Environmental Issues, Philosophy. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , .

Books I Love: Part I SYTYCD Top 6: They Are All Winners

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