sticksinthehead

life with sticks in one's head

Solidarity with Oakland

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It was in a sense a great action — we marched entirely against traffic — the cop cars seemed to be driving around with some stress. But after we pulled down the fence to Dilworth, I was really disappointed. It seemed like a lot of Philly occupiers were chickenshits — standing not even on the street we had taken, but on the sidewalk, terrified to stand in Dilworth Plaza with those 20 or so of us who did. I was disappointed. I ended up leaving — don’t want to get arrested again, just as some cops started getting in people’s faces. I yelled “Fuck you, pigs” as I walked down to the subway. Just heard two were arrested. Fuck.

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30 January 2012 at 4:44 am

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shitty times

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This weekend was pretty bad. It was nice helping Lxxx and Mxxxxx make a birthday cake for my mum, but I felt rotten most of the time. Not sure what is up. In a sense Occupy Philly has been a boon to me personally, forgetting for a moment the excitement of participating in a larger scale anarchist project. And the Shoe is, as always, my second family. But I don’t know, I am feeling things that are difficult to sort out. Am I overwhelmed? Don’t know. I do know that I was desperate, as OP went on, to forge real relationships with people. And I’m not sure that I have. I mean, I have, but I don’t know that they exist or will ever exist outside the circle of occupy. I don’t see Occupy ending, which is exciting as all hell, but at the same time, it’s hard to see my growing with it. I feel like a cog or something, like I don’t contribute anything but my body and solidarity. I still don’t have ideas of my own, which is NOT to say I can’t think for myself. I can do that, and continue to do it. But ever since we’ve gone off site, I’ve felt increasingly like a piece of shit. I miss meetings with some frequency. When I try  to open up about my shit, other people also start opening up about their shit, which should be good, but there are just so many people around that it doesn’t create any fucking sense of shared struggle, or empathy, or anything it should. I still feel like a loser. With no plans. With no skills. Who fades into the sea, even a sea of protestors.

This weekend, I just wanted to curl up and disappear.

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23 January 2012 at 4:20 pm

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holiday

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Happy Christmas for all of those of you who celebrate it. I had the distinct pleasure of spending my day with my parents and my brother and his family (including a nephew and niece whom I adore). Everyone else has passed out, and I am awake… Wondering whether to go back to Philadelphia this week, as a friend from NYC has said he has a car and might drive down to see me. That really is reason enough, I think. The brain has been doing better, though consistently exhausted and not really able to come up with ideas of its own…

Oh, and can you say, RECORD PLAYER!!!!!!!

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25 December 2011 at 11:51 pm

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Event organized by Gangs in Blue filmmakers!

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There is a Stop the Violence free community feast on July 8. Things kick off at 4 pm at 1652 Ridge Avenue. This event will be focusing on the community becoming self-sufficient (from the the cops anyway), and seems very promising to me. I’ll be making an effort to be there, and so should all anti-racists in Philly.

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27 June 2011 at 3:07 pm

Philly cops at in again…

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26 June 2011 at 11:46 am

Gangs in Blue

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Yesterday I watched Gangs in Blue, and tears were running down my face. My tears were not only because as privileged as I am, I know someone in Philadelphia who has been a victim of 1) police brutality, and 2) ongoing police harassment. They also fell because what I witnessed in the film did not particularly surprise me. Everyone in this city knows about the police. But somehow, nothing changes. The friend, Angel, who was brutalized, feels utterly helpless, and fearful in his own neighborhood, all because his skin is the wrong color (brown – Angel is Puerto Rican). In the case of brutality, he was driving three blocks to check on his elderly mother when a police cruiser signaled him to stop. He pulled over immediately. He was asked to get out of the car and he did. The policeman moved toward him and shoved him. Angel put his arms up to protect himself. That movement was deemed resistance. He was cuffed, punched, and brought into the unlit, un-video-taped back door of the station. There he was beaten by three police officers, while another looked on. He was beaten so badly that his partner Barbara, at that point fretting at home at the length of his absence, first heard of him again via a call from Hahnemann Hospital asking her to retrieve him. The judge threw out that case, angering the police further. A few weeks later, Angel and a friend were cleaning up the trash in the alley that construction workers had left rather rudely. It began to rain hard, and Angel waved his friend into Barbara’s car, which doesn’t run but sits idle in the alley. Sitting in the car, the two friends opened a six-pack of beer. The police pulled up behind, and proceeded to arrest Angel and charge him with Driving Under the Influence because he was sitting in the driver’s seat. Angel tried to reason with them, saying, “The keys aren’t in the car, and even if they were, this car doesn’t run!” The cops didn’t care. Again, the case was eventually thrown out. A few weeks after this, Angel was underneath a friend’s car helping him, as the friend leaned under the hood. A police cruiser pulled up and yelled to the friend with his head under the hood, “You, get out here! … Oh, we thought you were that other guy.” I can only imagine how frightened Angel, feet away, must have felt. Though the judges threw out all the charges against him, Angel and Barbara were forced to spend significant sums on legal representation, and fear of harassment is now simply a part of Angel’s life. Sadly, this tale is one of the least horrendous. How can our city not face this problem? It’s an easy answer: racism.

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18 June 2011 at 4:29 pm

Insomnia again

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So I can’t sleep, and worse than that, I’m feeling rather angry. Odds are it’s at myself, as I just keep saying (I would scream but I have a downstairs neighbor to think about), gritting my teeth, “FUCK YOU. FUCK YOU.” What part of myself is another question. Invariably this is followed by a more pitiable “I want to go home,” which I think I’ve written about earlier. I sort of want to punch a hole in the wall. I suppose I feel less depressed these days, but just as paralyzed. I talked to Marc earlier about how I wonder in fear whether “this is as good as it’s going to get,” because it isn’t good enough. I still don’t have a quick, sharp mind. For example, I left Marc’s office around 4:15, and somehow didn’t remember to go to the pharmacy with my script until 11:00 pm. Where they didn’t have any, and couldn’t give me any advice as to who might. Not that it would have mattered, because they are the only 24 hour pharmacy of which I know. So now I have no opiates for tomorrow (well, I have half a pill, because I didn’t take it tonight) and the sense that pharmacies are having a hard time getting it AGAIN. Half the point is, why did it take me until eleven fucking o’clock to remember I had this very important script to fill? Well, the answer is because my mind is a fucking sieve.

So I’m not near catatonic in pain anymore. But I’m still pretty fucking useless. And I still can’t imagine myself in the world in any meaningful way. My friends don’t need me. Sometimes I think they’re surprised when they hear from me, like they’ve forgotten about me. I suppose my family does need me,” but just because they love me. I’m impatient — if I can get this much better, what the fuck is wrong with me that I can’t actually get Better? What do I hate? My brain — a brain that is rather remarkable in finding ways to outwit drug treatment, laugh darkly in the face of ECT, and, I fear, DBS eventually. What good is that kind of remarkable?

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27 April 2011 at 12:21 am

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