I had not seen ANITA: Speaking Truth To Power, the film about Anita Hill. So intense! And her family shows up to sit behind her at her trial (really) for telling the truth to a panel of white men who have all done everything and more that Clarence Thomas had done! Precious! And to learn she was the last of 13 children! Where is the medal for her mother? And for her father, too? And she is so beautiful, also!
I had also not seen BADDDD SONIA SANCHEZ! She is so beautiful too! And so small! And so powerful! The beginning of this film was a bit challenging but stick with it. By the end you will be cheering an extraordinary woman and exceptionally brave spirit.
Then there is the revelatory book A TASTE OF POWER by Elaine Brown. Beautifully written, extremely perceptive, it is a must read for any understanding of the Black Panthers and how machismo undermines trust and solidarity in movements for social change.
And what about WHEAT BELLY by William Davis, an extremely handsome and healthy looking man, who tells us wheat, all grains, but especially wheat, are bad for us? Who knew? This book should be read by every overweight person on the planet. Especially those with that mysterious roll around the middle that looks so odd. It is odd, because wheat – bagels, muffins, rolls, wheat hidden in frankfurters, etc. – put it there. Which means it can be gotten rid of! We must not let bread, the so called staff of life, become the stick that beats us down.
THE VEGETARIAN MYTH by Lierre Keith has taken a drubbing by some vegans and vegetarians but I think it is a brilliant book about the reality of eating on this planet. I read it when it came out a few years ago and recently listened to it on audio. A very worthwhile immersion. You don’t have to agree with everybody about everything in order to become more deeply thoughtful and informed. In some ways, I consider it a book about growing up.
At the top of every list there is and always will be Credo Mutwa’s NDAABA, MY CHILDREN, which I consider an African bible. Filled with myths and legends that seem miraculous for their survival to our time. It is such a liberation not to be stuck with everybody else’s idea of Creation! God! Woman! Etc. Plus, some of it is really scary.
Then there’s David Icke whom I adore! What a lion heart! The only way HUMAN RACE GET OFF YOUR KNEES won’t make your jaw drop a hundred times is if you’re a mummy. Well wrapped.
My Buddhist hearted financial planner and I were tickled recently to discover we both like MAD MEN. I don’t know why he likes it, but I like it because it captures the emptiness and fraudulence of American life “at the top” of the advertising, sell them anything, consumer culture, perfectly. Flawless acting, and they get the racial and sexual dynamics right. Also the way the US is still, in many quite unexpected ways, an English colony. I like Don Draper’s story because it reminds me of my own: I never stole anyone else’s identity, but the person I turned out to be in the world is certainly not the one the programmers planned.
There’s IRIS, a film about the British writer, Iris Murdoch, who lost her identity to Alzheimer’s. As we age, Mrs. Heimer, as I call her, lurks in everyone’s subconscious. What would it be like to be brilliant one year and not know who you are the next? Judi Dench plays Murdoch, and is, as usual, splendid. What we learn is that you just basically love on in whatever shape you’re in, and hopefully you’ll have a beloved who can hang on, lovingly, too. It’s about what you get with any disaster, I suppose. An opportunity.