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your blue hood
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I Am Skooter
So here's us, on the raggedy edge.
One left her sweater sitting on the train / and the other lost three fingers at the Cannery
— Neko Case, Margaret vs. Pauline
July 29, 2012

Saddle Up for the Interstellar Rodeo

Randy Newman at the Interstellar Rodeo I’m off in Edmonton for the Interstellar Rodeo. It’s been two days of fine music and weather so far, with one more to go. Last night’s set ended with legendary songwriter Randy Newman playing as the sun went down in the western sky. It was beautiful.

More photos are over here on Flickr and my review of day one (featuring Gillian Welch and Alejandro Escovedo) is up at No Depression with day two to follow!

Posted by skooter at 8:36 AM This entry is filed under Camera, Music.

July 22, 2012

Aurora, Colorado

I’ve never been to Colorado. It’s a state I’ve always wanted to visit, but I’ve never quite made it. I’ve driven through Washington, Oregon, Utah, Idaho, Nevada and California pretty extensively, but Colorado’s eluded me.

I’d never heard of Aurora actually, but last Friday morning it was impossible not too. With The Dark Knight Rises premiering nationwide, thousands of people lined up for midnight screenings. Fans had booked tickets months in advance, and they showed up in droves. They showed up in costumes, and in Aurora, Colorado one fan showed up with a mask, an assault weapon and some kind of chemical smoke bomb, killed 12 people and wounded 58 others.

Andrew Cohen has a well written essay at The Atlantic that touches on the most troubling aspects of the events. It covers the topic well: the most striking thing about the events in Aurora isn’t that they happened, it’s that they’re really not surprising to anybody who follows the news. As Cohen writes:

Local television is inundated this weekend with stories of the victims, and the survivors, and the community’s pain. But that’s just one part of the tragedy that accompanies this story. The other is the realization that in the day and a half since the Aurora massacre another 100 or so people have been shot to death in America. The land of the free. The home of the brave.

12 people died late in the evening last Thursday, but at least those deaths made the news. Those 12 people’s deaths have had an impact on people. The other 100? Largely forgotten and unknown, those deaths just happened. That’s wrong.

I’ve written about his before, a bit more than five years ago. In the years since nothing’s changed: whenever an incident like this happens, American politicians come forward with expressions of grief and remorse but nothing changes. America is a society where, broadly speaking, most citizens have relatively easy access to weapons that have only one purpose—killing people.

These weapons have no practical application for civilians, and yet when a president even starts to talk about restricting access it becomes a constitutional issue.

Maybe Barak Obama is different, but I don’t think so. I suspect that he’ll continue to talk about hope, but do nothing about gun control. What hope is there in a country where this sort of thing can happen any day and anywhere? A country whose leaders are so weak of will that they refuse to address the root of the issue for fear that they won’t get elected.

That’s not leadership, that’s pandering. It has to stop.

Posted by skooter at 9:03 PM This entry is filed under America.
Tags: Barak Obama, Colorado, Gun Control, Guns

July 8, 2012

Whitehorse - Broken One

The Interstellar Rodeo starts on July 27th. It’s going to be a great weekend, and I’m pretty happy to be heading to Edmonton for it. Whitehorse are just one of the featured acts, and it’ll be the third time I’m seeing them this year (in three different provinces, no less.) I can’t wait.

Posted by skooter at 10:18 PM This entry is filed under Music.