Caleb Medley is a young aspiring stand-up comedian who is among the many victims of the Colorado shooting. He lost his eye and suffered from brain damage; and if that wasn't bad enough, he's facing an estimate of $2 million dollars in medical costs.
Caleb, like many Americans, is uninsured.
I've come at a point in my life where most of what I read and write is in English. I seem to pay more attention to international and American news than to the news of my own country. Yet no matter how much I've immersed myself in American culture, there are still some things I don't think I'll ever understand about the US.
I can't understand their infatuation with fire-arms. I just can't find the logic in the argument that if everyone were carrying a gun like in the days of the Wild West, tragedies like the Century 16 massacre could have been easily prevented.
And I certainly don't understand how the most powerful nation in the world can't afford to give free medical attention to their citizens. What's the point of all that might then?
So, even if I can't make a difference in changing the viewpoints of the entire US government with regards to these 2 problems, at least I'm going to try to make a difference with Caleb.
Caleb's family have set up a donation page to gather funds for his medical attention. If you can spare a few bucks, that action will be more meaningful that all the Tweets and blogposts decrying the shooting, and pointlessly pointing the finger to the scapegoat of your choice —Nolan and his movies, the NRA, violent videogames, or whatever floats your boat.
I haven't had the chance to see the 3rd Batman movie. But I still remember the most important message of the 2nd one: the moment where the citizens of Gotham and the prison convicts, who were trapped in separate river ferries, decided to have the courage to do what's right.
May we all find it in our hearts to have the same courage.
[H/T Boing Boing]
My friend Mike Clelland has been discovering a lot of interesting connections between Jessica Redfield --one of the Aurora's massacre victims-- hockey, and the color red. I myself think I've stumbled upon a weird link between this tragedy and Shakespeare's play A Midsummer Night's Dream.
Only this time the dream turned into a nightmare...
It has already been acknowledged that Redfield had already been involved in a previous mass shooting, and that it was maybe some type of precognition that which saved her life that time. A feeling of dread and emptiness which forced her to escape the place where a few minutes later a madman would start shooting at the innocent bystanders.
I can’t get this odd feeling out of my chest. This empty, almost sickening feeling won’t go away. I noticed this feeling when I was in the Eaton Center in Toronto just seconds before someone opened fire in the food court. An odd feeling which led me to go outside and unknowingly out of harm‘s way. It’s hard for me to wrap my mind around how a weird feeling saved me from being in the middle of a deadly shooting.
Mike further analyses how Jessica's life, up to the time of the shooting, seemd to have resonated with the color red. Her real name was Jessica Ghawi, but she changed it to Redfield because she figured it would be better for her professional career as a sports reporter.
[As a Mexican, it is also easy for me to observe that Colorado is one of the Spanish words we use for the color red (rojo).]
Mike read some of her older Tweets --an unsavory task given the nature of the circumstances, yet I thank him for it-- and found this image, which becomes even more disturbing because of how the events have already unfolded. Here's Jessica in the aftermath of a tomato fight (She's the one standing to the right).
She posted this image at 3:33 pm (July 7), which to anyone who has cared to follow this blog will know is a number I pay special attention to --along with a whole bunch of persons interested in the Fortean world.
The smeared faces of the beautiful smiling girls seems almost like a surreal prelude to the real tragedy that would come days later. I also personally found the image unsettling because of the creepy dude looking to the camera from behind Jessica, at the right of the picture. His red-stained hair and grim feature is oddly reminiscent of James Eagan Holmes, the man who murdered Jessica yesterday.
Jessica had a boyfriend who is a professional hockey player. And this is where my little personal contribution to this Twilight tapestry appears: Even though I'm not a big Shakespeare fan, for some reason Mike's blog compelled me to Google 'A Midsummer's Night Dream', to further confirm what I already suspected.
One of the characters in that play is named Puck. He is the trickstery servant of Oberon, the king of fairies. The puck is also the name given to the dark disk used to play hockey.
In the play Puck also goes by the name Robin Goodfellow, and here once again we find a link to the color red.
In the image I posted at the top of this link the artist chose to portray Titania, the queen of the fairies, with red hair --The same color of Jessica's.
Was she meant to represent the fairie queen in the ghastly play that was enacted on the Aurora theater?
If we shadows have offended,
Think but this, and all is mended,
That you have but slumbered here
While these visions did appear.
—The opening of Puck's epilogue.
I also recommend you read Loren's latest post:
UPDATE: 82_28, a visitor to Loren's blog, posted this on the thread for Blood Red Movie Massacres:
7 Red Robin employees injured in theater shooting.
The color Red, and the Robin, once again connected with this tragedy.
Also, Loren has written another post in his blog, which mentions this one, as well as the posts of other people who've tried to follow the synchro-mystic elements of the Aurora Massacre:Red Dawn
And finally, Mike clelland sent me the link to this beautiful, but enigmatic painting: The Gates of Dawn.
The goddess Aurora, with her red hair and seductive demeanor, standing at the gate of her 'rose-filled chambers.'
We also read in the description:
Aurora is inviting and alluring, magnificently beautiful and proud, but she is also divinely powerful. Punished by Aphrodite for enticing Ares, Aurora was condemned to be restless and destructive in her pursuit of young men. In future years Draper considered painting a scene from the story of Aurora's love for Tithonus, a mortal granted immortality without eternal youth, metamorphosed into a grasshopper after his beauty faded. The discarded roses that litter die floor at Aurora's feet refer to her inexhaustible passion, and the parasitic bindweed flowers in her hair also allude to her strangling, obsessive desire. She is like the sirens: beautiful, erotic, insatiably voracious, and never able to live happily in the company of men. Aurora was even prepared to hypnotise and rape her lovers as they slept to satisfy her sexual hunger. Draper's femmes fatales simultaneously solicit and repel, entice and caution, desire and despise.
Destructive in her pursuit of young men. Will we find a history of sexual frustration in the twisted psyche of James Holmes?
[I guess that's not too insightful, really]
The rose has a long tradition of being a sacred offering for any number of goddeses, including Isis, Venus, and even the Blessed Virgin Mary in the Catholic dogma.
And here in the painting we see that the roses are at the bottom of the composition. The term sub-rosa (under the rose) has been used in antiquity to represent a secret being kept.
What's the secret the Red Dawn is keeping from us?
[UPDATE 07-27-12] There have been so many other weird synchromystic elements popping up from this event it's almost overwhelming. Since this particular post was meant to address the 'Shakespearean' connection though, I think it bears mentioning at least these two:
* Another synchromystic friend, Brizdaz (Darren) wrote a post on his blog related to Anne Hathaway, the actress who played the role of Catwoman. Anne Hathatway was also the name of Shakespeare's wife.
* Remember the old TV series from the 60's? I just literally stumbled upon an old magazine ad that reminded me of how Adam West used to enter his bat-cave: through a secret button hidden inside a Shakespeare's bust.
There are more things in heaven and earth, yadda yadda, right?
Mind == Blown o__0
You've probably never heard of Steve Mann, but chances are that before this decade is over your life will be changed because of him.
Steve Mann is considered the father of wearable computer, the type of 'augmented reality' interfaces that are likely to become ubiquitous in the very-near future , thanks to the efforts of companies like Google and Olympus. The logical next step in the integration of computer technology in our everyday lives.
Yet for Mann wearing a computer vision system is not a simple matter of choice, since the device is intended to improve on his impaired vision. Hence he always carries a medical prescription signed by his physician, along with several letters explaining the nature and capabilities of the technology he created.
For all intents and purposes, Steve Mann is a cyborg.
Yet it seems some French McDonalds' have a sort of anti-cyborg policy, since during a recent trip with his family Mann was physically assaulted by 3 employees and evicted from the premises of this establishment, located at the popular Champs Elysees.
I tried to calm him down and I showed him the letter from my doctor and the documentation I had brought with me. He (who I will refer to as Perpetrator 1) then brought me to two other persons. He was standing in the middle, right in front of me, and there was another person to my left seated at a table (who I will refer to as Perpetrator 2), and a third person to my right. The third person (who I will refer to as Perpetrator 3) was holding a broom and dustpan, and wearing a shirt with a McDonald's logo on it. The person in the center (Perpetrator 1) handed the materials I had given him to the person to my left (Perpetrator 2), while the three of them reviewed my doctor's letter and the documentation.
After all three of them reviewed this material, and deliberated on it for some time, Perpetrator 2 angrily crumpled and ripped up the letter from my doctor. My other documentation was also destroyed by Perpetrator 1.
I noticed that Perpetrator 1 was wearing a name tag clipped to his belt. When I looked down at it, he quickly covered it up with his hand, and pulled it off and turned it around so that it was facing inwards, so that only the blank white backside of it was then facing outwards.
Unbenknownst to the vandals however, they accidentally triggered a function in Mann's computer vision system which managed to capture the whole event.
Go to Steve Mann's blog and read the rest, and if you can spread the word. We just can't let these French douchebags to single-handedly trigger the robot uprising!
As if UFOs weren't Taboo enough, over at the Intrepid blog I've decided to explore the most repressed aspect of the phenomenon: its link with the human libido --it's all about breaking the boundaries, baby!
The Guardian reports that the area surrounding Stonehenge will finally cease to be a 'national embarrassment', by receiving a £27m facelift for the construction of a new visitor center.
Simon Thurley, the chief executive of English Heritage, said: "A new dawn at Stonehenge is truly upon us. Though the stones themselves have never failed to awe visitors, their setting has been a national embarrassment and disgrace.
"After nearly 30 years English Heritage finally has a scheme that will transform the setting of the stones and our visitors' experience of them.
"The restoration of the landscape together with a major new exhibition on site will finally give our greatest and most famous monument the treatment it deserves."
My fellow Grailers, I give you... the new visitor center:
Now I've never had the chance to visit Stonehenge myself, but by the mere look of these computer renderings, I cannot for the life of me find any single way in which this image of "toothpicks holding up sheet metal" —as one commentator at Dezeen aptly put it— could possibly relate to either its location or the historic site it's supposed to serve. How is this an improvement, I ask you?
I only hope the people responsible for this design stay way from this area after this travesty of a building is completed, lest the tourists visiting Stonehenge might find themselves with the rare opportunity to capture an old Druidic tradition for their Facebook wall...
I've just read an io9 article discussing some recent footage that was shown at the Comic Con from the upcoming movie The Host. This film is another adaptation from one of Stephenie Meyer's books, and if you don't recognize her name, chances are you're not a teenage girl with a crush for sparkling vampires.
But The Host won't show handsome un-dead or young werewolves who love to take their shirt off. it tells the story of how life on Earth changes after an alien invasion; not the typical Michael Bay Explosiorama Hollywood is so fond of producing, but a more subtle (and disturbing) silent invasion where human beings become unwilling hosts to incorporeal non-human entities —so yeah, that's starting to sound more promising.
Here's the io9 link in case you want to read the full review, spoilers and all. But the thing that caught my eye is this part:
The alien-possessed humans all have weird swirly blue eyes and a creepy affect, and they love shininess. The alien "Seekers" wear all white suits and drive shiny gold cars.
That word, 'Seeker', immediately reminded me of that great classic close encounter tale taken right out of John Keel's Mothman Prophecies: Woody Derenberger's meeting with Indrid Cold.
In this website you'll find some audio-clips from an original radio interview where Derenberger tells his controversial account. I direct you to the 1st clip at approx 15:01 where Derenberger says:
He asked me if I had to work to live, and I explained him what I was, he even asked me where I lived and I told him, and I told him I was a salesman, and he told me that he was a Searcher.
Indrid Cold indentifies himself as a 'Searcher', which is IMO darn close to 'Seekers', the term for the parasitic aliens in The Host. It's also worth noting that some of the aspects portrayed in Keel's book The Mothman Prophecies, like all those events where witnesses claimed a double of Keel had stopped by the day before he went to interview them, has been interpreted by some researchers —like Tau Allen Greenfield— not as a döppelganger apparition, but as a case of something 'possessing' Keel and controlling his actions without his awareness.
One other thing, which I also find curious: Stephenie Meyer came to world fame thanks to her Twilight novels. And Derebenger said that Indrid Cold's planet was called Lanulos. This word may sound like gibberish to an English-speaker, yet to me it seems like an anagram for the Spanish words 'Sol' (sun) and 'Luna' (moon), which almost like trying to combine the Sun and the Moon to create... a Twilight.
Coincidence, or is Meyer familiar with the Mothman mythos? I guess we'll find out... in Time.
Guess what? Beginning today, I'll start contributing on the Intrepid magazine online blog. Intrepid magazine is edited by Scotty Roberts, who along my buddy Micah Hanks are putting together the Paradigm Symposium, to be celebrated in Minneapolis this October --if you want to meet me on Meatspace, this here is your best chance!
My first post delves into a mystery that, while still fairly recent, has nonetheless quickly become the stuff of legend among the Fortean social networks: Nick Redfern's prolificness.