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It Ain't Easy Being Indian
Hurricanes
Friday, October 06 2017
 
Written by Ricey Wild,
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My big black Ďkittení The RZA (who is only four years old) was walking in front of me in the hallway with his tail up high. He clearly wanted something, like treats, and I said to him, ďYou have all that food, clean water and a soft bed!Ē I stopped in my tracks and felt terrible for the millions of Americans in Puerto Rico who donít have that security.

Ahem! Excuse me while I take my anxiety meds. Iíve been in plenty of blizzards, floods and tornadoes but the magnitude of what Hurricane Maria inflicted on Puerto Rico is beyond devastating, to say the least. What worries me most is that another such anomaly weather-wise will hit them again just as they begin to recover from Irma and Maria due to climate change (IMHO). I wonder if these types of catastrophes are just the harbingers of whatís to come.

I cry for my fellow sentient beings. I do not, as a practice, say to myself, ďSelf, at least youíre not homeless, starving Ďinsert any 3rd world country and I include US Indian reservations hereí or disease ridden with no access to health care.Ē Yeah. I get to be warm and dry. I can call people and let them know Iím all right and sleep comfortably even with my physical pain. So I donít really have anything to complain about except how my Taino descended relatives are being treated by the US Government Ė which is headed by the most disgusting White Supremacist ever. And there have been too many.

Just in case you missed any of my dozens of column references about how I was in Hurricane Wilma in Mexico on the Riviera Maya ;) in 2005, here you go again. Yikes. I just now had to grow gills again, remembering the humidity. Well, before we were shuttled to a hurricane shelter on the resort grounds, I put in a call to my only child to basically say goodbye, because I didnít have any clue how things were going to go. Just wondering if I would ever see him and my family again was torturous.

That is where all of our fellow Puerto Rican American citizens are right now Ė† in that grey cloud of uncertainty of not knowing if their loved ones know they are all right. I saw a piece on the Governor of Puerto Rico saying that 45 has been in touch with him and offered support. I canít say that I believe 45 because Puerto Rico is mostly brown people, and sadly Thee Olde Dotard is not a fan of naturally tanned people. Prove me wrong and I will hand write a letter to you stating this.

Then, into my little nest of comfort, North Korea and Venezuela are dusting off their war kits in anticipation of US aggression. REALLY, really??? Can we just please all go back to hunting, gathering, gardening and bartering? This capitalistic society is simply not working for all of humanity and in my honest opinion it is killing us. Even if we laid off the nuclear bombs and nuclear plants, where would we put them? I think of that character from the TV series ďLostĒ who kept pushing the keyboard to prevent being obliterated. So, where do we go from here?

Indigenous Peoples worldwide had it all under control until colonists from tiny islands and fiefdoms in Europe thought they had a better plan. Divide and conquer Ė which they did with efficient vicious genocidal tactics.

Which brings me to this: I watched a facebook interview of a survivor of Nazi torture actually forgive her tormentor Mengele. Truth be told Iím not there. Iím not at that point nor do I think I ever will be, considering the centuries of hate, genocide, torture and lies the colonists have inflicted on us Indigenous Peoples. And that is still going on right now. And for what? To benefit the filthy millionaires who support sucking every sacred mineral and resource from our Mother Earth. Wow! And the Christians believe in an afterlife? Good luck in Hell (not).

Peace be upon you my Kin. In the direct tunnel of hateful flames we will still carry on by dancing, singing, praying and doing what we have always done Ė depending on each other for help when we need it. I really need it now more than ever, medically.

I have taken so many people into my home when they had none. They all let me down bigly. Yet I am still empathetic to those who need help right now. When will I ever learn? HAHAHAHAHHAHAAAHAAH!

Still, I am gonna donate a big $10 bucks for Puerto Rico. I do what I can.

BTW, Iím going as an Indian for Halloween, buckskin-n-all!

 

 

SoÖdoes anyone care what I think?
Thursday, September 14 2017
 
Written by Ricey Wild,
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SoÖdoes anyone care what I think? I said this on a Saturday night when my two cats and my dog, The Mitz, were staring at me askance. It wasa as if I had called a fur-amily meeting and then forgot about it. Since moving to Rezberry my life expectancy has accelerated by 40 years. Not in wisdom, sad to say, but in bitter experience.

My therapist from 16 years ago said not everyone is suited for small town life. That would be me. Yet, Iíve endured for one reason only; my Gramma Rose. She is the sole reason I had a wonderful childhood and she still takes care of me, she told me she always will even unto the afterlife. She is 99.

So much astonishingly horrible events have happened recently that Iím overwhelmed by the criminal, projectile-puking antics of 45 Ė I canít even. Really though, Iím at a loss for words and how to go on. And I read the Scrabble Dictionary! I feel like I got the wind knocked out of me when I begin to try and process the infamy and treason that has been de facto tolerated because 45 is a republican, per se (BH). Per se means you have no credentials to practice law in a state where you didnít pass the LSAT. But I digress.

Mueller best get on with his Grand Jury and a random lynch mob to dispose of 45 by any means necessary. 45 is a sick, twisted beast who must end his days in the Gotham Insanity Receptacle. Or white manís hell Ė that works, too. I hope he ends up scrubbing menstrual undergarments. Is it just me?

Itís just like my Unk Gene used to say: you donít have to be a fool to know one.

ďItís like a jungle sometimes I wonder how I keep from going underĒ, ďdonít push me cuz Iím close to the edge Iím tryiní not to lose my head,Ē GrandMaster Flash & The Furious Five. Yeah right, I am Old School and proud to be so. IMHO these verses were the original resistance lyrics.

The current hyper-hate we are experiencing now against we non-white people is nothing new. But now we have history on how to counter it and decades of resistance that we learned in the courts and streets. We have won many times using the laws they used to oppress us. In other words, we are gonna Jam On It! Wiki wiki wikiÖ.

In other news, may I quote the Goddess Maya Angelou? She said when someone shows you who they are, believe them. I feel so nauseous and anxious anytime I see/read about 45 and his heinous acts that I wanna hurl chunks. I know there are legions of others who feel like I do about him and his illegitimate presidency. But I want to know Ė as in conspiracy theory Ė how this came to be? Iím for real.

Iíve come to realize that someone who set themselves up to be the epitome of morality was, in fact, a pedophile. And that situation has traumatized me to no end. So, I wonder why 45 has gotten away with so much vile, evil acts against Earth and people and no one has yet cut off his little fingers? Iím not calling for his imminent demise, no, I would rather write to him while heís living out his last days in a gulag. One can wish; ennit?

ďSo Glad You Ainít HereĒ Love, Turtle Island.

For the record Ima gonna sit tight until I have to push my walker into Nazi traffic. Check history and read where Hitler read about how the United States of America created the genocide of the Original People of Turtle Island. The genocide of Indigenous Peoples of the ĎAmericasí by European colonists is the most devastating in all known history. Iím asking as a friend. You wanna be open and informed? This is a good start.

I want you to know I live with this trauma every day, waking and sleeping and I have no control over it. White people in every interaction, be it seconds, have let me know Iím not accepted nor wanted Ė like an embarrassing relative who was not invited to the open party. Iím not the only one.

No pity party here folks, just stating the truth as I know it to be.

With that, I want the white people who stood up for humanity know that I saw you. I SAW YOU. It feels really good. I and a lot of non-whites appreciate your stance against hate and racism. I also see that women are at the forefront of causes against hate and the victims of it.

I love you my Sisters and I wonít ever forget your sacrifice bringing attention to hateful actions that you died for, even though that need never have happened.

 

August It Ain't Easy Being Indian
Tuesday, August 08 2017
 
Written by Ricey Wild,
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There is some Milkweed in my front window in the yard and since the biggest ones have bloomed itís been a daily show of gloriousness! Butterflies, bees, ants and hummingbirds have been visiting every day and I get to witness their beauty. They have given me hope when I was sure everything was going to H-E-double hockey sticks. I admit I get so depressed reading the news online and that I just canít stopÖyet. My herd of cats are also fascinated with the activity outside, and they scare the hummingbirds and the other critters off even though they are separated by a screen.

Thatís when I call them the fuzzy little monsters they are. For the record all my cats are indoor critters because they had been bringing me presents like dragonflies, grasshoppers, etc. But when The RZA got a bird, that was it. Nope! No more outside for them. Itís better for all of us.

I share this visual with you because when I lived in Minneapolis, my living room window looked into an alley that had a steady parade of drunks on their trek to and from the liquor store. It wasnít pretty, at all. I still loved living there but I didnít know about the gorgeous wildlife and critters who are my neighbors now. When I first moved here out to Rezberry I was actually astounded to find out there are cows and horses that live down the road. Not sure what I expected but it was new to me.

As a matter of fact, when I was 3-or 4-years-old I got horses and cows mixed up and cried when I was corrected. ďNo! Them is horsies!Ē Suffice it to say fifty years later I now understand the difference. I blame my Unkís for messing with a little girlís mind. LOL!

Ah oh, the big city! How I miss you. I always felt like I was part of something and there was always somewhere to go and things to do. Up here I am left out as being a weird cat lady who writes stuff. So in defense, I insulate myself even more from the bizarre antics I see people up here doing Ė like camping and hunting and eating bleached fish. Yaaaahhhhh!!! For realz!

Oh geez. Iíve been writing about this topic on repeat and Iím sorry for that. Truth is, I would never have had my Mitzi who saved me on the worst day of my life. Sheís nine years old now and is about the same age as me now, so we can age grumpily together while enjoying clean air. Take that Mpls!!!! SNIFFFFFF!!! AHHHHHH!!! Milkweed, yum!

A strange thing happened some years ago when an Elder, who is no longer here, told me on our bus ride home from work that there are ďOld OnesĒ buried in my back yard. I KNOW!!! I was slightly creeped out by her statement, but there are things that have happened in my home and outside that startled me, but make sense now. Sure enough, there are several areas behind my home that could be graves and I know that because my former job was to help families find appropriate burial sites and I spent a lot of time in cemeteries. I know what they look and feel like.

So I have put out asema (tobacco) and other offerings for them and I get the impression that they keep me here for reasons yet unknown. Like a spiritual tractor beam, for real. What that reason is I donít know but I do know Iím not going anywhere else permanently until I leave this physical body for good.

Iím not afraid or threatened by what comes after at all. I will, however, haunt anyone who threatens or hurts my furry family.

I watch VICELAND channel and just now a Vice Essentials piece came on, in which South Koreans seek and pay for a near-death experience! Of course, I had to watch it. If youíre interested the title is ďA Good Day to DieĒ (I know!) It is designed to help people appreciate life. Wow.

Coincidence? I think not. I had a life, one I loved and now I have a quite different life and Iím finally ready to embrace it. I think. ;) However, I will never,† ever, ever eat lutefisk Ė no matter the incentive. I have standards, yanno. Sadly, our fish are already deeply contaminated.

Oh, there I go again. We live in a strange world. I can and will be writing about it from my perspective as long as I can. No, my beloved Carol J. Iím not planning on leaving just yet. Iím just waiting for that big bus from the sky to try and get me. I still got moves!

Summer musings
Monday, July 03 2017
 
Written by Ricey Wild,
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When I write itís in the moment and a culmination of the past month or years. I have so much to say, yell about, and communicate.† Itís very difficult to put all that into 800 words. Thatís all, you say? Yes, thatís all. But I take it very seriously when need be, and then because I like to laugh that content belongs in this space, too. But Iím running out of things to laugh about.

It has to do with the hate and fear-mongering the Republicans are spewing and the Democratís kicked-dog syndrome in response to it. Really though, what is happening to our country? Turtle Island was ours first and then the immigrants showed up and literally destroyed and poisoned it. If there was a Garden of Eden, we Indigenous People lived in it. We prayed and were appreciative of the bountiful gifts the Creator provided us with.

The reckless haste and waste that the 1% are acquiring $$$$$$$$$$$ is sickening and short sighted. They donít get that money in and of itself is worthless except as toilet paper or lighting a fire with. I say let them go into their bunkers and leave the rest of us alone to deal with the aftermath of their destruction. Yes, Iím very sad but mostly angry at the current state of our Earth. No animal, except humans, could or would have laid waste to our Mother such as is happening now.

Call me Debbie Downer but the worst of capitalism happens to we who are browner.

So here in Rezberry there is an annual celebration for enrollees and their family. There are festivities for the kids, a feast and cash drawings for the adults. There are always cultural activities too, like at the museum I used to work for. Boozhoo Jeff! I got to make some jingle earrings with his daughter Leah and they are soooo pretty! I love that we get to celebrate us especially since we werenít supposed to be here anymore.

Think on that for a moment. We were hunted down to certain extinction but we survived.

All thanks to our ancestors who refused to be beaten even in the face of true evil. Yanno what? I feel in my bones and blood their love and strength to carry on yet another day and then some. We Ė you and I Ė have to honor that sacrifice. We wouldnít be here without them.

For the record I didnít win any cash but I got a free pizza cutter when I signed up. Imía use it next per-cap day when I can afford frozen pizza. Shhhhh!!! I also saw a bunch of people who I love and hugged, and more that I absolutely abhor. <shivering> Those creatures are horrible any time but having to see them in a concentrated venue is torture. Ick. Talk about a microcosm of insanity. It only happens once a year so thatís good. I just wanna know whoís throwing my ticket out of the barrel.

Next up is the Fond du Lac Veterans Powwow the first weekend in July. I know a lot of the Veterans Committee and they are such good people who want their kindred to be recognized. If you are a Vet, near or far, come check out our hospitality. And thanks for your service. My father Jerome Charette was Air Force. Iím sure every Indian family has someone who served voluntarily in the military. This was our land first.

SoooÖ. My social calendar is filled up for the foreseeable future but I still need to make it to Minneapolis, my old stomping grounds, to visit with Daniel, Rachel and kids.

Itís so comforting for me when I stay with them, itís like I never left! I become the City Indian I grew up as and I love it! I think itís strange though how even if we live in the Big City we still consider our rezzes as Ďhomeí. Come to think about it, wherever we step is Ďhomeí for us!!!

I know quite a few former City Indians who moved back to their rezzes and I really wonder why? My own motive was my Gramma Rose, so I can be near her. But what of others? Write me and let me know. My email is at the end of this column.

My sister Stefanie is in NICU for a head injury and while I usually donít post or write for help she could really use some support right now. Miigwech. Stef has a long road ahead of her and will never be the same active person. I brought her a little statue of an Indian woman dancing because she wants to do that again. Donít we all.

Just dance. Even if you can only do it in a chair.

Springtime in Rezberry
Thursday, June 01 2017
 
Written by Ricey Wild,
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I finally got to open the windows up in my cat-haired, dusty old house. Wood ticks have also returned and I found one on my dog Mitzi, and two were on me but I caught them before they latched on. Ick. With the pleasure of nice weather comes the danger because ticks can kill. Itís a warning for all you nature lovers, so layer up when you go in the woods or long grass. Just a PSA because I care!

There is a movie named ďThe HappeningĒ with Matt Damon that is listed as an Ďeco-thrillerí and of course, I couldnít pass that up even though I dislike Damon. The movie was about how a neuro-toxin that was released by plant life caused mass suicides. The more concentrated the human population the worse it was but exposure to it got you killed anyway. It was really brutal and non-discriminatory.

At the end of the movie they had an interview with a scientist who said that it was the planet, our Earth, fighting back against human atrocities (my words). I like that. I also believe thatís what we are currently experiencing with all the unusual, deadly weather around the globe. Our Mother is so done with our using and abusing her, whether we acknowledge our individual carbon footprint or not.

I know there are masses of wonderful people who are working hard to bring to our attention to the fact that our capitalist way of living is unsustainable and will be the end of us. My heart goes out to all of yooz who make it your lifeís work to help for the greater good of all. You are all in the fight of your lives against big oil and an incredibly corrupt government led by an illegally elected president. Here we are: Good vs. Evil and the fate of our species literally are in your hands.

Though I sit here peaceably right now, taking time to pet a cat, I am in this with you. I just have to find the best way to communicate my wrath at the administration and hope for our future. Armchair activism perhaps? Iíll give it all I got. Truth is, itís all I haveÖa voice. Good thing for us that we all have one.

Geez. Then there are colonial oppression pieces that were called Ďartí at the Walker Sculpture Garden in Minneapolis. ďSaffoldĒ is a replica of the gallows used to murder the Dakota 38+2; the largest mass hanging in American history. Guess who was the architect of that gruesome act? President Lincoln, yes, THAT president who is glorified by the writers of the invadersí history. It fits right in with the hatred by white people against anyone not them; and their rants and raves, and their murdering of People of Color.

My optimistic soul wants to believe that the latest terrorist act was the worst and it wonít happen again, but it always does. Innocent people are being targeted simply for the color of their skin or religious beliefs. But thatís nothing new or surprising for us Indigenous People. That we have survived this long after the invasion is remarkable and it took every iota of courage we have.

Oh man, I am getting soooo worked up about this!!! I am hissing and spitting like a cat that goes all puffy! I snarl at those who think they are better than us because they have more money! Put that in a salad why dontcha! Grrrr. Their money is ill-gotten gains and they will come to realize that when they are in a bunker fighting over the last can of caviar. Some of us who get it will be eating fresh food and living in green housing, happy as can be.

There is a ways to go before we get to that serene place but there is a way. Iím always yelling WAKE UP!!! And I probably wonít stop until there is some semblance of natural order in our daily world. Iím very sure Iíve never lived what is called Ďnormalí and Iím not sure if I would fit. Or if I even want to for that matter. As individuals we are awesome, but gathered together in a common cause we are spectacular!

Happy Birthday to all my Gemini kin! I just had my birthday and it was fun but exhausting, Iím too ole for all that festivity nowadays. I had my time. I really want to go to the beach on Lake Superior,† which is where my ancestors lived until we got stuffed onto a reservation that is 50% swampland. I want to pay my respects and honor the place that has sustained us to this day.

PS: The Walker Art Center is removing the gallows. We have to stay aware and Miigwech to those of you who made this happen.†

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