I’m still getting used to writing ‘2012’.
Most of January I was in California, enjoying some sunshine (and cold/rain but that’s okay) and spending some quality time with
myself friends. I didn’t write much while I was away this time, but I have a lot of beautiful visceral landscapes in my mind to draw inspiration from. I returned back to Toronto and, much to my chagrin, it was (and still is) barely winter. I think we’ve had 25cm of snow since November. The skating rinks are open and this is probably the first year I’ve skated outdoors in temperatures above zero and under bright sunny skies. It’s sort of unreal.
It’s been a slow return to homelife. This year feels like it’s going to be a heavy one. I don’t mean that it will be a bad year, more in the sense that this feels like a year of changes, discussions and plans. I can get behind that once in a while. Last year was a strange one, I’d love to have this year be positive and interesting. Isn’t there something about Jupiter going on?
This morning I listened to an episode of This American Life and illustrated the state of Alabama’s very strict illegal immigration laws (Bill HB56). I read a lot about this when it was being passed last year–even in Toronto it was a watercooler topic–but I hadn’t thought about it in a while. Now while I don’t know enough about the particulars to write an entire essay about it, my understanding is that it is ridiculously strict and based on the idea that if people are frightened enough about enforcement they will “self-deport”. The whole thing reeks of fear mongering (with racial undertones?) and I am troubled that it will create communities that turn on one another to uphold the law. In the episode there were a number of stories including a short interview with a Latino woman who couldn’t even pick up a money order at WalMart because the clerks were demanding she show proof of citizenship- which she couldn’t provide. Why even bother? You are a WalMart clerk, not an immigration officer. You can listen to the episode [link].
The repeal of Bill 56 was rejected as recently as December but apparently is going through another vote or round of modifications on the 7th of February? Let’s hope that it changes. Latin Dispatch has a transcription of the law [link].
In quick music update: FCL have a few shows this month, if you’re in southern Ontario maybe we’ll see you? You should come because you might not have the chance to see Forest City Lovers in a long….time. Just sayin’. Next week I’m recording a bunch of songs with Jamie for a KASHKA record. I’m totally looking forward to it, it’s always such a fun time working with him. The new songs will be out soon for your listening pleasures.