Friday, January 29, 2010



Monday, January 18, 2010

The Corporation

Pass it around... Kinda speaks to Copenhagen in one voice...

I was wondering what it must be like to live outside the us. This letter to me from Kevy came from New Zealand, so I thought to show support for Copenhagen, I would pass around so we share our experience with each other.

I passed it to South Africa, and my dear friend with the following request: What is it like where you live? We always awful stories about South African apartheid, but look at we treat each other in the States?

But I wound up here...

At the same time we have audacity to go abroad to police the world while we simultaneously deplete their natural resources, exploit their values, destroy their economies and their ability to become sustainable as indigenous cultures.

In doing so, they become enslaved to our corrupt economy that is run by a few elite corporations. The blue chips that profit thrive during times of war and desperation. The corporation feeds off the poverty and hunger.

Through poverty, neglect, and poor living conditions they become dependent upon an artificial culture that is unhealthy and impure.

The indigenous are fed then artificial diet and toxins are introduced into the natural environment causing illness and disease.

Because it was the corporation that first introduced the substance into the natural environment, it is only natural that corporation holds the cure.

Fuck you Big Pharma!

You suck.

Sincerely yours,

John Q. Public

Thursday, January 14, 2010

omg omg ocd ocd

You Know You Have OCD When

You know you have OCD when...
        you use a wet-nap to clean the wet-nap holder

You know you have OCD when...
         you have labels for your labels

You know you have OCD when... you have a list...
        "You Know You Have OCD When"

Because Almost Doesn't Count!

Credit: Elyssa Durant
© Elyssa Durant

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

MNPS: Minorities To Blame for Low Test Scores

The Nashville City Paper previously reported that African-American students were out-performed by their white counterparts on the ACT (Metro ACT scores drop; Tennessee reaches new high, 2007).

Given what is currently at stake in Metro Nashville Public Schools (MNPS), such casual reporting of racial discrepancy in test scores is irresponsible at best: Does this mean that white children are better students than their black and Hispanic classmates?

Are Minorities to Blame for Low Test Scores in Metro Nashville Public Schools?
What's next for Nashville? Are minorities to blame for our failure to meet the benchmarks set forth in the No Child Left Behind legislation? High-stakes, standardized entrance exams are not only culturally biased, but also politically motivated in their agenda to help bring back a return to basics type of core-curriculum.
Studies in both the sociology and politics of educational evaluation have consistently shown that standardized entrance exams such as the SAT and ACT do not accurately predict academic performance at the college level.
Given the official release of performance data by MNPS officials, I am concerned that less curious readers may place too much attention to such details and misconstrue this information making voluntary, de-facto desegregation less attractive to schools that did not quite make the grade last academic term.

If, as stated in Wednesday's article, the ACT is a curriculum-based measure of readiness in English, mathematics, reading and science, then all these scores show us is that we have failed in our mission to provide an adequate education for all our citizens.

I am not sure exactly what readiness is, but I am certain that our schools are failing miserably at educating those children who need us the most. Let's level the playing field for a change and start talking about equity in education if we truly expect teachers to leave no child behind, we must first give them the tools they need to move forward.

The Bell Curve Wars
Savage Inequalities
There Are No Children Here

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Tripping Down Memory Lane

 I have put a lot of myself out there lately from my forgotten secrets to my deepest fears. I'm too old to start over but too young to forget. Like so many women-- no... like so many people... I'm a little bit of everything... so for those of you who are listening (and those of us who are "kicking ass and taking names," enjoy the ride!

The curious can find anything and everything! I often wonder why it is so much easier for others to get information than it is for me to get about myself!

I'm a digger. To be clear, that is "digger." I never use the "N" word, and I'm way too proud to marry for money.

Yes, I am a digger. I love information. I love to find it, I love to collect it, but most of all, I love to use it.

I love to dissect it, analyze it, formulate new questions, and ponder the answers. I love the journey of natural inquiry... never knowing where my racing mind will take me; often surprised by the answer; but always, always, intrigued by the things I encounter along the way.

So I set out to find the answer to one question, and instead I find myself asking a million more. It keeps me up at night, and allows me to avoid the day. My life is not unexamined, and my thought patterns may be far from typical, but the things I have learned along the way are by far the most intriguing and most unique. I am not afraid to ask questions, nor am I afraid that I don't have all the answers. But as a digger, I do know that it is the path least taken: the creative, atypical mind that is riddled with creativity, tangential thoughts and questions that often deliver the most interesting answers. But sometimes, it is the answers that deliver us to the most interesting questions.

We often think that questions drive the inquiry-- at least that's what they tell us in school. To use the "Scientific Method." And of course, to never, ever color outside the lines! But aren't the best discoveries the ones we weren't searching for? The unexpected gift... the non-occasion.

The beauty is in the every day. The challenge is in the unexpected. Call me crazy if you like (and many have) but I can assure you that there will come a day when all of that R.A.M. (Random Access Memory) will come in handy. I am definitely asking the right questions... and maybe one day you will too.

Finding my voice has allowed me to appreciate the silence. The hours between dusk and dawn where the rest of the world sleeps and I dig. I dig and I write. I fill the lonely hours with my innermost thoughts and my very best friend. So as the rest of the world sleeps soundly surrounded by loved ones in a sanctuary they call home, I fill myself with books, journals and information. Lots and lots of information.

Who would have thought a that loneliness can become a family in it's own right? It is always there and it is always familiar. Who would have thought that solitude could become our greatest companion and that strangers would become our very best friends.

I miss New York. I miss Dr. Stu. I miss Jefferey and I miss Todd. I miss my wild, brilliant friends plagued by curiosity, insomnia, and creativity.

I miss walking down to Hot n' Crusty on Wednesdays at 3 am. when everything really is, yes, "hot and crusty!" I want to go the internet cafe just across from the Hello Kitty store; wake up old friends that dared to sleep before the sun came up! WAKE-UP TODD! I've been calling you for hours! I have a joke to I want to tell you!

New York, New York. The "City" that never sleeps?

Is it the that sleeps or the people in it? I'm not really sure...

Maybe it is not the city at all! In fact, I don't think it was ever really about the city. I think it is more about the anonymity. Someplace you can be yourself, and never worry about being judged by your in-bred hillbilly neighbors who are, in all honesty, much more focused on raising hell then raising children...

To them, I am "strange." I am "weird." I am "Italian" or "Jewish" or "something" because I talk really, really, (really) fast!


So while you sleep, I digg. I learn , I question, and I write. But I do it alone, and I'm starting not to like it so much.

So for all of you out there who are insomnomaniacs like me: "writers" "consultants," perpetually un and underemployed yet "overqualified" computer geeks -- please enjoy the video blog I posted below.

 I chose a few songs that have kept me company at night.

Just loud enough to drown out the drunk couple outside my window having yet another domestic dispute, but low enough so that the neighbors downstairs won't complain. Hopefully, you will remember some of those infamous eighty's songs-- you know, the one that have kept me dancing in the living room into the wee hours of the morning. And if you are paying attention, you might even be able to learn a little something about my favorite word!

You'll find all of my favorites in one place. So enjoy the trip my friends, it's getting early for some, but late for others, and I've got some shit to do before the world wakes up. To quote John Cougar (or is it Melloncamp?) I Ain't Even Done With The Night!

DESCRIPTION: Everything from my favorite word to my favorite website. There's something in there for pretty much every mood-- songs to make you cry, videos to make you laugh. Political ads that make you sick and some that will give you chills-- but at least they make you feel!!! Finding my voice, and hearing those of strangers has given me the strength I needed to move on. So for so many of you who have contacted me lately, via the web, via your cell phone, or even by way of a nasty website-- stand tall and stand close because much like fear, courage also rubs off on you somehow when you are surrounded by the right people. So a big shout out, and a sincere word of thanks to all of you who have helped to find my voice once again and the courage to say whatever is on my mind...


I will not be ignored and I will not be forgotten. But guess what, Here Comes the Sun.

I made it through night and now it's time to go, because that was SO yesterday! Thanks-For-Giving!


Posted by Elyssa Durant

Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile




The Powers That Beat: Reality Bytes: Google Goggles: OCD Sanity Checker

The Powers That Beat: Reality Bytes: Google Goggles: OCD Sanity Checker