G. A. Minutes 3-20-18

Today is the first day of spring. Yeah right….. around here that statement is considered to be a joke. The official first day of spring aka the Spring Equinox never brings weather that is even remotely spring like. This evening the sky is overcast, temperatures are in the mid-20s but a strong east wind makes it feel like it’s slightly below zero.

With climate change kicking in, we have no idea what to expect but we think it will at least get warmer soon and all the growing things will turn green and start growing again. Wouldn’t it be a kick in the pants if what the man made weather alterations gave the Twin Ports area was an endless winter? Hey, wait a minute…..that’s not even funny. Forget I said that.

Coney Island has only 3 customers when the first Occupiers arrive. The customers consist of a young man, who we vaguely recognize, and his 2 young sons or little brothers. The staff guys appear happy to see us; probably because they know more people will show up to join us.

Speaking of more people, a few of the Anonymous crew arrive. They’re going to hold another Line 3 Resistance Rally on this upcoming Friday. They plan to meet up and rally on the corner of Lake Ave and Superior St at 1pm; then march down to Wells Fargo and US Bank and see how much trouble they can make without getting arrested. Some of the Occupiers hope to join them.

An Occupier announces, “Natives Against Heroin will be having another Fire Teaching on Saturday, March 24th, 2pm at the Central Hillside Community Center. I really enjoyed the last one so am gonna be sure to attend this next one too”.

Some of the Occupiers attended the memorial service for Ms. Community Cleanup held last Sunday at AICHO. An Occupier tells those who were unable to attend, “I went over around 4pm, figuring that things would have wound down by then and there wouldn’t be many people there anymore. I was wrong; the place was still packed. I swear that every homeless and/or street person in the entire Central Hillside was there. Many asked when we’re gonna start up our fire again. I just told them we’d start as soon as the weather got warm enough to allow us to be comfortable sitting in the circle”.

Another Occupier opines, “I was glad to see that Ms Cleanup’s partner was there; he looked kinda like a deer blinded by headlights but then he’s looked like that many other times . Someone sighs, “I sure do miss her; when she wasn’t drinking she was the sweetest person I knew”. We all agree.

An Anon comments, “I wonder when our organizer friend is going to have another fundraiser for Makwa Line 3 Resistance Camp. Maybe we could hold one ourselves and call it Pow Wows Not Pipelines? An Occupier laughs and replies, “Our friend said the food fundraisers were canceled until further notice, whatever that means. We probably could hold one ourselves but calling it anything to do with Pow Wows would not be a good idea. We’re a bunch of white people who have no business even thinking about holding a Pow Wow.

“Those types of gatherings, I don’t know if they were called Pow Wows in olden times, were an important part of Native culture for thousands of years before European settlers came over and ruined everything. Now days, a Pow Wow requires a shit load of money, almost a year of advance planing and a huge crew of paid staff to get everything done. That’s why they’re usually sponsored by the so called tribal governments. I do think we could ask our friend if he’d be willing to do another fundraiser and we could help him. I also think we need to make time to get out to Makwa again and see how things are going”. Most of us are interested in holding another fundraiser; all of us want to go out to Makwa again.

An Occupier remarks, “It looked like the fundraiser/ spaghetti dinner for Honor the Earth this past Friday at Peace Church was a success. We (nods toward her partner) got there at the tail end when the food was almost gone. You all (nods toward other Occupiers) were already there. I noticed that the donations basket on the table was overflowing with money. Seeing as most of the actual customers were gone, it was nice to just kick back with you and all the other usual suspects”.

The staff guys have a TV up on the wall in the back of the restaurant. It’s tuned to some channel that is broadcasting some type of annual Republican dinner. It looks like He Who Shall Not Be Named is the featured speaker. Fortunately, the sound has been turned off so we don’t have to actually hear his bs. An Occupier asks, “I wonder what they’re having for dinner?” Another Occupier snorts, “Probably roast immigrants and white rhino pudding”.

The Occupier who is a college student says, “I have to write a big paper for my Masters program; I hope you guys will help me. My thesis seeks to explain how poverty causes increased environmental pollution. Over the next couple of weeks I’ll be bringing my recording materials to our meetings and hoping we can discuss my ideas and whatever ideas you all may have”. We say, “Sounds like a plan”.

An Occupier asks the Occupier who likes to reports things, “So what else is going on this week?” She reports, “Well, a bunch of the big Water Protector NGOs are sponsoring a party with several live bands at the Red Herring on Thursday, March 22nd, 6:30p-9p. I’m sure there will be a suggested donation. Then on Friday is the big Anon Divest Rally, Saturday will be the Fire Teachings at 2pm and then a group called March for Our Lives is sponsoring a march about gun control that will leave from the old Central H.S. on E 3rd St at 5:30pm. On Monday the Human Rights Commission will hold their yearly forum, 5:30p at AICHO. The HRC will be providing a free simple dinner for everyone who attends and the event is open to the general public”.

The Occupier who is a single parent laments, “This gun control thing has me confused. I know we need a way to keep crazed white supremacists from killing innocent people but I also think we’re gonna need our guns to fight the revolution. I’m not sure what the answer is”.

We all agree that gun control is a very important issue that warrants further discussion but it’s almost 8pm and the staff guys are cleaning everything so instead of starting a serious conversation we all get silly instead. We start making up various scenarios about guns i.e. a gun that when the owner points it at someone and hollers, ‘Freeze!’ the person who was getting hollered at would freeze solid and so would the gun owner. After a while all gun owners would be frozen solid and the rest of us could get down to the business of creating a better world where all could live in peace and harmony.

The staff guys are looking at us with an expression that says, “We know you all are f’ing nuts but we love you anyway”. We want them to continue to love us so we pack up, leave tips and head on out into the cold. We expect to be back here next Tuesday.