DALEK RELAXATION FOR HUMANS.
A good dude named Brendan put together a collaborative zine last month with a bunch of folks and asked me to write a blurb on what I think about the Twin Cities punk scene and what I get out of my involvement in it. So I wrote a thing, a kinda-long-I-wish-it-was-longer thing. I’ve got a few opinions past this thing I wrote, I’m aware I only just touched on related topics encompassing the main one, and the more I reread it the more I want to add and edit. But this is what I made with the allotted time I had, so. Cool I guess. Disclaimers aside, a lot of folks I follow here inspired the writing besides myself (including afropunk, not on tumblr-can’t find that really great article, rabbleprochoice, gradientlair, and all the people who contributed content to said sites that I read all the time), so I figured I’d share it:
What would I like to get out of my involvement in the punk scene? Lately I’ve been wondering if I can even ask anything, if maybe I just hold punk to too high of a standard that it can’t match. Because the more involved I become and the more I want to do, the more I become disappointed. Growing up, I’ve always wanted to be someone who made things. In pursuing to be this type of person, I learned that a lot of people in general love the “idea” of doing things, but not many actually do much of what they say. This unfortunately describes a lot of punk culture, so if I could ask for anything, I’d love for that to change. I’d love for the TC punk community to actually be what it claims to be. Or what punk in general claims to be, if I may be so bold.
For starters, maybe begin with the most obvious: A counterculture? Really? I don’t think our culture right now can hold the title of “counterculture”. Arguably, it’s never been one. I’d definitely love to see that change. Punk claims to be this great resistance against mainstream pop culture and societal ideals, but it’s been ignoring the fact that it’s been raised in this mainstream culture (and in a white middle class male perspective) and as such pulling the exact same shit. The only exception being it’s been sprinkled studs and crooked patches over the whole thing and masked it with shouts of “anarchy!” to make it seem different. But it’s not.
I lived in a house for two years, and booked a lot of the shows there for over half that time, in West Saint Paul. I was in college full time (like really full time) as well. Minus the fact that at almost every show someone would be “so surprised” that it was me (a woman) who booked the night, set up the show, or even lived there, I really did love doing shows. Minus the fact that some people acted rather “unimpressed” with the shitty house because it was clean and the dishes were done, I really did love doing shows. Minus the fact that some people had the fucking audacity to mock and laugh at the “PC” Zero tolerance for racism, sexism, trans/homophobia or queer bashing of any kind in this space “policies” I would write on the white board next to the line up, I really did love doing shows. Minus the fact that Zack and I were really supportive of those who needed spaces for their fully booked shows (Who doesn’t love that? Easy) but they walked into our place like they owned it, never said thank you, and hardly even watched any bands, I really did love doing shows. And to any of you who were those people?
I’d like to personally apologize on behalf of the house if our space wasn’t punk enough for you. I’m sorry we didn’t meet up to your requirements because we like living in a relatively clean space, our toilet worked (most of the time), and we value people of all races, genders, and sexualities to be met with the same respect you give the “default” white dude. Now kindly go fuck yourself.
It bothered me for awhile, but I later came to terms with the fact that I don’t give a single shit for any of those people. I don’t have time to scramble together my “punk cred” every time someone who thinks they’re too cool for me walks into the room. I have shit to do man, and I’m sure that there are plenty of wonderful people in this scene that DO care that I could give my attention instead (and I would like to meet you, let’s hang out).
What a lot of TC punks really reek of is this “punker than thou” attitude that I vaguely just described. I could make eye contact with these people and I wouldn’t even get the “honor” or luxury of a nod of acknowledgement of my existence, let alone a conversation. If punk is about being an asshole, not talking to people you don’t think are worthy, romanticizing alcoholism and drug addiction, not caring about the well being of anyone in the same scene as you, not caring to listen or acknowledge perspectives outside of yours, then punk has about as much culture to it as a frathouse has. It’s shallow and a phase and maybe you get a few artsy photos out of it that have “shock value”.
Cetascean (awesome beautiful intelligent native anarchist crust band from Canada) wrote this great piece on inclusion that I really connected with (yeah, I read band inserts. suck it nerd). I definitely recommend one, buying their record obviously (Crows) and two, giving that a good read through. Inclusion is literally what it sounds like, to include. As far as that goes in punk, when a space is mostly occupied by a privileged/dominating group (i.e. white males). I’ve noticed that passive inclusion is a huge issue that isn’t being addressed enough here. I’ve experienced it first hand that while everyone is “invited” to go to show and events, it’s up to the marginalized person or people to include themselves in the scene. That’s like the dominating group saying “Hey, we still have our club, you’re invited or whatever. But now if you feel uncomfortable that’s your own fault.” This still creates an uncomfortable and unwelcoming environment, and doesn’t change anything. Let’s be real, a lot of the TC punk scene is a white dude haven. Before all the white guys that are reading this get their panties in a twist and call me a feminazi PC demon from hell, breath for a second and count to 10.
As punks, as this “counterculture” we claim to be a part of, if we want to change anything we first have to take responsibility for our shit. Fix ourselves and how we treat people before we can make any impact outside of our culture. If you’re so sick of hearing people talk about racism, well, there are people that are sick of experiencing it probably about x10000000 more than you are sick of hearing about it. So quit whining. Do something about it. Unlearn. Apologize. Take responsibility. Call people out. It is not a crime to be a white cis male, but if you’re white you need to take responsibility for racism. If you’re male you need to take responsibility for sexism. If you’re cis and straight you need to take responsibility for transphobia and queer bashing. It doesn’t have to keep being this way. Punk just needs to stop being in love with itself. A lot of punk ethics and values were not invented by punks. DIY ethics were not invented by punks. I’d say rediscovered at best. But either way, if white/male punks don’t want to be seen as another group who stole and appropriated from other marginalized cultures, then people need to respect what’s going on, respect themselves and others, and respect where the roots come from. Punk needs to quit being nostalgic for itself and look forward. Progress. Dismantle.
And stop expecting everyone else to make the effort just because “it wasn’t your fault things are this way”.
Isn’t that what fucking punk is?
a mpls no coast punk photo blog
I made a new tumblr yesterday.
It’s a compilation of shitty photos
(with the occasional good one)
that were mostly taken in pits or whatever.
It was an old idea I had when I moved out to MN,
but never got around to doing it.
My dude and I are doing this together now.
There will also be an updated local shows calendar
when we get to it, but I figured some people
might be interested in it now. Check it out if you’d like.
danibarstad asked: oh i get it! i just found my new favorite tumblr page and it's YOU!
pshhh get OUTTA here
mrah asked: Happy birdday Breeeee
thanks you! not sure if I just missed this or what but I got a swarm of messages that just popped up that sound like they’re from awhile ago.
anyway I STILL THINK THAT YOU’RE NEAT.
midnasbitch asked: HAPPY BIRTHDAY, DUDE!!!! I HOPE IT'S YOUR BEST ONE YET AND IT KICKS ASS AND YOU DO ALL SORTS OF FUN STUPID SHIT :D have a rad day. also- we need to catch up yo!
DUDE IT FUCKING WAS.
I GOT AN OLD COMPETITION BOW
(yknow, like archery)
AND SOME ARROWS
AND I SHOT THEM AT A RANGE
(WITH MY BARE HANDS)
AND THEN I ATE ICE CREAM CAKE
(also with my bare hands)
FROM THE BEST ICE CREAM PLACE IN TOWN
AND THEN I PLAYED VIDEOGAMES CAUSE MY DUDE HAD TO WORK
AND THEN I WENT TO MY BEST FRIENDS’S HOUSE
(FRIENDS ARE RAD)
AND GOT CUPCAKES
AND THEN I WENT TO A LATE MOVIE WITH MY DUDE
(this is the end)
CAUSE ALL MY FRIENDS ARE ADULTS AND HAVE TO SLEEP
(teachers n’ bankers n’ such)
AND IT WAS HILARIOUS
AND I’VE HAD BACKSTREET BOYS IN MY HEAD ALL DAY TODAY
THANK YOU SO MUCH
WE SHOULD CATCH UP
The new SA 7” on Sweet Rot is out officially now, 2 new tracks with saxophone, Byron Coley gave it a “solid” review and my girlfriend said that is a big deal among nerds.
cooL bAnd d00d
an old “does this pen suck or is it awesome” doodle test.
also cool dog brain vomit ideas.
la dee da, drew my mom a mother’s day card.
or letter. whatever.
Altamira, Brazil – Some 200 indigenous people affected by the construction of large hydroelectric dams in the Amazon launched an occupation today on one of the main construction sites of the Belo Monte dam complex on the Xingu River in the Brazilian Amazon. The group demands that the Brazilian government adopt effective legislation on prior consultations with indigenous peoples regarding projects that affect their lands and livelihoods. As this has not happened, they are demanding the immediate suspension of construction, technical studies and police operations related to dams along the Xingu, Tapajos and Teles Pires rivers. Shock troops of the military police were awaiting indigenous protestors when they arrived at the Belo Monte dam site, but they were unable to impede the occupation.
The indigenous protestors include members of the Juruna, Kayapó, Xipaya, Kuruaya, Asurini, Parakanã, Arara tribes from the Xingu River, as well as warriors of the Munduruku, a large tribe from the neighboring Tapajós river basin. The indigenous peoples are joined by fishermen and local riverine communities from the Xingu region. Initial reports indicate that approximately 6,000 workers at one of the main Belo Monte construction sites, Pimental, have ceased operations as a result of the protest. The occupation, according to the indigenous communities, will continue indefinitely or until the federal government meets their demands.
“Our forest and our river are one of the last natural heritages of Brazil. It’s sad to think: why are there so many dams planned on only one river?” Said Saw Exebu, spokesperson for the general chief of the Munduruku.”We don’t want this to happen on our lands. We don’t want dams built in our home, the Tapajós.”
Occupations against the Belo Monte dam complex and mobilizations against other Amazonian dams have become increasingly commonplace. Construction on Belo Monte has been halted on at least seven occasions over the last year due to the efforts of affected indigenous communities and fishermen to call attention to the failures of the Norte Energia dam building consortium and government agencies to comply with the project’s mandated environmental and social conditions. On March 21st, approximately 100 indigenous peoples, riverbank dwellers (ribeirinhos) and small farmers expelled dam workers and occupied the Pimental site, maintained by the Belo Monte Construction Consortium (CCBM). Additionally, recent strikes and protests by dam workers have created additional unrest at CCBM construction sites.
Sorry it’s not art but it’s really important.
I started this show thing on the school radio, and the first show airs at 1pm (CST) today. It’s just internet radio right now because we have shitty funding, but if you’re free or able to listen to the internet around then it’d be neat if you tuned in. This link (or the title of this post) will open in itunes for you:
this week’s from 1-1:45pm
Patriarchy is women feeling forced to write that they’re “taken”(even when they’re not) on social networking sites to reduce the number of creeps hitting on them on the internet
Or having to say “I have a boyfriend” when you get hit on by a creep IRL because you know they won’t take “i’m not interested” for an answer. Patriarchy is men respecting a man who isn’t even there and his ‘property’ more than a woman and her wishes
I JUST HAD TO DO THIS. AGAIN.
ALL OVER MY FACEBOOK.
Trying to just keep my tumblr to posts of things I make but this post has rung too true for me, especially over the past couple of months.
I hate that I go to shows as often as I can and genuinely want to make friends with people (because friends are cool) and over half the time I have to look for my boyfriend and hang by him for the rest of the evening after a 5 min talk with a dude stranger who thinks me smiling and being nice is an invitation for more than that.