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MONDAY, JULY 04, 2011
Today I saw hereditary chief of the Squamish Nation, part of the Coast Salish Nation, speak at Capilano U. The room was full of maybe 15 people. That may be an overestimate. Despite the fact that the event was advertised through more than one medium, it was poorly attended. Despite the fact that students where giving the chance to know, the opportunity to make time in their busy schedules, this important event was carried out and with barely a noticeable impact. Are posters obsolete? Has the internet taking away the power of printed notice?

Or has apathy? Or indifference?

The man who spoke was Chief Ian Campbell. He was at my best guess, definitely over 30, not over 45. He spoke with a knowledge I have not seen in many people. He spoke for maybe forty minutes. I learned more about the First Nations people in those forty minutes today then I have learned in my 29 years this time around. Was the fact that this man was First Nations the reason why so many seats sat empty?

Today I found myself wondering why I do the work I do.

Today I rode the bus not being satisfied with the selection and amount of songs on my personal electronic device that has so many functions, it would blow the mind of any person over the age of 60.

Today I saw my partner struggle with the unbearable lightness of being.

Today I thought fondly of my son.

Today I went to see a play, or it was supposed to be. Part of the Fuck the Cultural Olympiad events put on by whoever for whomever at a bar in the DTES. It was a typical bar of the area. Typical crowd of anarchists, Marxists, activists, punks and intellectuals. We sat drinking cheap beer from a questionable tap. A First Nations man clearly not there for the "art", there for the drinks no doubt. No doubt he had succumbed to the effects of alcohol on his carbon based body. The room grew claustrophobic. The man heckled and spoke over the actors. People attempted to stop him. He was having none of it. I had to leave. I grew frantic. Anxiety ridden. I wanted to scream at everyone. I wanted to crawl and scrape my way over the black clad, stinky people around me. I couldn't take it. I don't know how it ended. I don't remember what it was called. My room mate bought me beer.

Today I rode the skytrain, again.

Today I thought of cargo trikes, button makers, music being played in strange venues to weird people while weird lights flicker in the corner.



Is Chief Ian Campbell going to speak again? I didn't know about the event or saw any posters. Someone made mention of it in the Courier's Voicebox 3 weeks ago but it was just "Come to aboriginal week, Chief Ian Campbell will be there..." ..and I forgot about it in the weeks to come. If someone told me "You may learn more in 40 minutes than you have your entire life," I would have gone.

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