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I want to sing

IMG_3101I want to tell people to think about what they’re doing

What they’re saying

how they’re treating each other

 

I want to tell people to walk away

You don’t need to be embroiled in conflict

there’s a better way

 

I want to walk with out cowering

laugh without toning it down

weep without being coddled

 

I want to go home and sleep like a baby

to be at peace

to love unconditionally

 

I want to sing off key

dance awkwardly

run slowly

 

I want to rejoice completely

simply because I am alive.

 

Art and Artists

This is wonderful description of Norman Mailer was written by Graydon Carter for a book review for the New York Times. I haven’t read the book this is reviewing but I love the way Carter describes Mailer, a writer I have always loved.

Fame and Infamy

J. Michael Lennon’s ‘Norman Mailer: A Double Life’

By GRAYDON CARTER

Published: October 17, 2013

It could be said that Norman Mailer was a man and a writer halfway between fame and infamy and yet with little in the way of middle ground. He was, in varying combinations, a world-class drinker, feuder, provocateur, self-mythologizer and anti-feminist. He was a war protester, a mayoral candidate, a co-founder of The Village Voice, as well as a wife stabber, a serial husband (of six wives), and a father (of nine). He was a boxer, an actor, a filmmaker, a poet and a playwright. He was also a journalist and a novelist of enormous and singular narrative inventiveness and thrust, a two-time Pulitzer Prize winner, and one of the least boring and most tireless and tiresome public figures of the last half of the 20th century.

Michael Evans/The New York Times

Writers on Artists – It’s interesting how we perceive others. Carter has such a beautiful way of using words.

 

The Chattanooga Way – How a city comes together to make a difference

Walking bridge

As a city girl from New York and Los Angeles, who currently lives in a small desert town just outside of Joshua Tree National Park, Chattanooga as I recently experienced it, is a breath of fresh air.

That’s a big deal for a city that 20 years ago was considered the dirtiest and most polluted city in the country. Today Chattanooga is called innovative, progressive and livable.

My first visit to Chattanooga was for a conference of the Society of Environmental Journalists (SEJ) from October 2 to October 8 and I found myself enjoying the reinvented urban landscape, the public art, the easy walking access, the good restaurants, and the welcoming friendly atmosphere.

Kim White, President and CEO of River City Company invited me to sit in on a charrette, an intense collaborative city-planning meeting, for the downtown center. There were somewhere between 300 to 400 people. As I looked around the room I saw a number of city leaders, a cross section of residents, students, and people who traveled from other cities just to observe the Chattanooga process.

As the meeting got started, people took their place at tables of about 7 or 8 people. The Leader of the meeting explained we would first introduce ourselves and then go around our respective tables answering a handful of questions: “When you think of Chattanooga 20 years from now what do you think of? Name three adjectives to describe the city center. Come up with a slogan that will best describe the city you want to see.”

When that task was completed, we drew our ideas and suggested improvements on a paper map of the specific area, including mixed-use buildings, a free light rail, parking, more street lights, parks, and green spaces. These notes and plans were then voiced publicly by a representative of each table. From there, the planning committee will take the suggestions to architects, landscape designers, engineers, transportation engineers and other experts who will draft the next generation of the plan.

It is one thing to hear about the development of a city and another to be a participant in the process. It is because of these collaborative efforts that Chattanooga is one of the most progressive and livable mid-size cities in the U.S.

Congratulations Chattanooga. I’m coming back to see more.

There will be more picture of Chattanooga on my photo website: hfs.photoshelter.com