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Archive Lair of 2001: Days Slunk By

Yeesh!! I've just printed out a Copy of Archive Lair 1 to send to relatives, and it totalled 25 Printed pages!! Presumably Archive Lair 2 is just as Crowded, at Least. Time to put the 2001 Home Lair entries Aside on this new page, and split up this year's (2002's) entries into more manageable pieces between our two Archive Lairs. Or something like that...

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Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Eid Mubarak, Blessed Solstice...!!

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 13, 2001: It's POURING RAIN outside!! My God, is it pouring rain! In fact, if you haven't heard already, the weather around Seattle has been almost uniformly HIDEOUS for the past four or five weeks, at least! I got in a short stint of singing at the Market this past Sunday after church; most other days, I wouldn't dream of taking a guitar outside in such conditions.

THE LAIRMISTRESS ON THE ROAD: I am going to be in Tennessee visiting the folks for a couple of weeks, from December 18 through January 3, 2002 (that is, barring unexpected flight delays, security breaches, and other weird things happening in airports). I will try to stay in touch with the Lair from my parents' computer, while most likely getting logged off by the server every 20 minutes or so (the Internet provider in rural northeast Tennessee really sucks, by most accounts!). The area around Fairfield Glade is quite lovely any time of year, though, generally speaking, there's not a whole lot going on (at least not compared to Seattle). Nowhere much to do any busking, either, alas. Hopefully I can still read the online editions of local newspapers and TV broadcasts (while getting logged off every twenty minutes by the sucky server). Happy Holidays to All, LairLurkers, whichever your preferred Midwinter Festival happens to be (and there are plenty to choose from)!!

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Something Wicked This Way Comes...

UNCONFIRMED VIRUS ALERT (THURSDAY, DECEMBER 13, 2001): Attention, Cronies all! You recall that my Archive Lair has twice suffered a loss of text from the webshell (giving the impression that the bottom half of the page was somehow cut off and wiped out)! And just last week, the same thing happened to our lovely LairMusic Resources Page for Independent Musicians that we've worked on so hard for so long! I have not been able to find the exact reason for this from official sources, but I do have it on reasonably knowledgeable authority (a couple of computer tech friends of Riz's) that a virus of some sort may be playing LairLurker in the Webshell off and on! These evildoers must be smoked out and brought to justice! In the meantime, I have backed up the webshell versions of all the LairPages on disks, and some of them on a hard drive besides, and I urge all my fellow LairMistresses and Webmasters to do the same, for the sake of your respective Lairs' integrity, and your own peace of mind! Of course, we must also go about our usual business and keep building up our lovely Lairs--otherwise the LairBugs have won!!

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A curious-looking first stab at a Site Map is now being developed, to give all new and practiced LairLurkers greater access to the entire range of Lairs that they may or may not have yet discovered! Now, if only (seemingly) half of the charming animated graphic critters at the Animation Factory were not inexplicably unavailable at present!! Our under-construction Site Map looks awful funny right now with empty boxes where the gifs are supposed to be!

UPDATE (December 26, 2001): I've basically figured out by now how to save the Animated Gifs and other images on the Lair's Webshell Directory. Now, if only I don't forget what I learned while I'm here on vacation! You'll notice that I haven't updated this page much since I arrived in Tennessee--for the primary reason that my Dad's 56K server is... SO... IN.. CRED... IB... LY... FREAKIN'... SLOWWWW...!! In fact, I regret to say, this thing sucks even WORSE than previously imagined! I've saved some images in the Directory since I got here, but aside from that, I'm mostly using this old Mac to check my email and delete the junk ads from Ukraine or wherever. I can't bear to use this computer too much on any given day, lest I lose it completely, and throw the bloody thing out the adjoining window. So, most work on this site will resume after I return to Seattle on January 3rd.

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SPECIAL NOTE (TUESDAY, DECEMBER 4, 2001): Something has gone horribly wrong with this Archive Lair again; apparently stuff gets wiped out at the bottom of the page when it gets too big! Luckily, I printed out the entire content of this page BEFORE it got wiped out; now I have created a second Archive Lair to hold the spillover from this one. Let's hope this keeps stuff from being lost again--keep your lurking fingers crossed!!

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George Harrison (1943-2001)

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 2001: We at the Lair are very sorry to report the passing yesterday (Thursday, November 29) of Beatles lead guitarist George Harrison, age 58, who had been valiantly fighting cancer off-and-on since 1998. He was the group's experimenter in both music and spirituality, having studied and collaborated with Pandit Ravi Shankar, and having infused his renowned band's music with an integral spiritual element during the late 1960's. Our thoughts, prayers and best wishes go out to George, his family, friends, and musical LairCronies of many decades. Thank you for your life and work among us, George! Lend us your energy toward Peace, now when we need it most!
Here is a Yahoo! collection of LairLinks on George Harrison's Life and Work.

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Yon LairMistress Has a Lean and Hungry Look...

Winter come She will! And I must gather all my resources and strength to face the winter and keep performing, as the holiday shopping crowds may welcome the outdoor entertainment as a kind of stress relief! I must also commit to hitting all the open mic venues I can find, and be open to traveling outside the Seattle city limits to find more of the same! May the changes and musical breakthroughs of the past year continue to inspire and guide me. May my mentors and role models on voice, guitar, bodhran and accordion gang up on my inner self-hater, slash it to pieces and scatter its ashes in the nearest gutter! And may all the collaborations and solo gigs that I dream of in my wildest fantasies actually come to pass!

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TOGETHER ACROSS THE WORLD!! SALAAM/SHALOM/SÍOCHÁIN/PEACE!!!

The U.S. News sources are so restricted and downright CENSORED right now, it's getting ridiculous. If you want news that doesn't watch what it says, you might just have to go somewhere across the ponds. Check out Free Speech TV, the Independent Media Center, Karachi, Pakistan's Dawn Newspaper, the classic satirical publication The Onion, the Christian Science Monitor, the International Herald Tribune, Philadelphia's CityPaper.net, the Nation Newspaper of Pakistan, or The News (Jang Group, Pakistan). Or, if all else fails, try some of the sites on my Iraq Sanctions LairLinks Page!!

Likewise, here are some local and outside Pirate Radio and other Alternative Media sources that USUALLY don't bother to watch what they say (or bow to the FCC, in true Libertarian form!). Check out Seattle's Studio X, Free Seattle Radio, Central Seattle Grassroots Radio, and The Greater Seattle Radio Dial, for starters. Likewise, take a gander at PIRATE TV.NET, Radio Free World, FUCC Radio Details, and THE MEDIA WORLD.com Links Page, all dedicated to reclaiming public airwaves for real human beings like you and me, mateys! Pirate Media Ahoy!!

Ehh, what the heck--Here's an Entire ALTERNATIVE MEDIA LAIRLINKS PAGE, including all the alt-media LairLinks given above, for your subversive reading pleasure!! REAL Freedom is never having to watch what you say--or read! Just doing my part to piss off the right-wing Patrierotic types...(no, that's not a typo!).

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The BBC has published some very interesting stories on the Middle East, Afghanistan, and September 11 on their website, including the translation of Osama Bin Laden's Statement to the Al-Jazeera Network.

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Now, how do you suppose Osama Bin Laden and Bert from "Sesame Street" managed to get on a poster together?!! Myself, I haven't a clue...
UPDATE: Here is some more info on the Bin Laden/Muppets connection...

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George W Gets His Groove Back!!

Check out the Mini-Clips of George's hilarious danceable antics on the BushCartoon.com Website!! Just click on any of several Mini-Clip links, and watch Dubya shake his groove thing on the dance floor or in the aerobics studio! A great collection of Bushisms and Bush jokes round out the selection.
GOD BLESS AMERICA!!!

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Sleeping With the Fishes: Takes Strength to Laugh When You Start to Drown...

Among the rumors now is the suggestion that Jason Webley has floated out of the country for a while, but I can't confirm this. The website does say that no one is checking his email or PO Box at present. Who knows what he's up to when he's dead? I may have to journey and find out, or toss a handful of carrots into the Ship Canal to "see what the lake might yield" (in Archie Fisher's lyrics); it's so desolate in these parts without him. If only I knew him well enough to be able to reach him across the Divide! I need a transfusion of his energy very quickly, and probably should be listening to his (and Nusrat's) CD's more often! I hope he will turn up one day when I am performing somewhere, and begin singing along. Who knows what he will look and sound like next? But in any case, I feel great sadness in his absence, and long to feel more comfortable in his presence, with all that he has done to feed my heart and soul since he resurfaced in mid-May of this year! This will be something to work on in the future. In the meantime, he inspires me to keep busy and focus as much as possible on my true work and the musician that I truly want to be...

Here are the Irish lyrics and English translation of the new song I have written for Jason, in honor of his latest journey of transformation!

Here at last (after a bunch of other great reviews and photo galleries available on the Jason Webley Forum!) is my Halloween Concert Review!!! Nice job to all the writers and photographers who preceded me in your Concert Accounts! A marvelous Jason Webley Halloween Special 2001 Page has also been assembled by Mike Whybark, with collected links to photo galleries, reviews and MP3's associated with the Halloween Concert! Thanks, Mike!

Check out the article on Jason and the Halloween Concert in the October 24, 2001 issue of the Seattle Weekly!

HALLOWEEN/SAMHAIN/DIA DE LOS MUERTOS: Here is a special LairLinks page for a Special Season now Upon us!!

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THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 15, 2001: Here we are in the Ides of November, and the rain has scarcely stopped all week. I'm expected to make my Christmas plans soon, and I hardly want to think that far ahead. In Afghanistan, the Taliban government is crumbling under the combined assault of US air and ground presence and the Northern Alliance, and people in many Afghan cities are celebrating in the streets and letting each other out of Taliban prisons. Here in the Seattle Home Lair, we anxiously await what will happen next, and we say that the world isn't dying...

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I just checked out the enormous Seattle's Best Live Music Website. Looks awesome--and it may make my LairLinks job, and my quest for performance opportunities, a whole lot easier!!

Likewise, here is the link for Musician's Books: The Online Bookstore for All Musicians. It also looks as if it could be helpful for garnering info on recording, MP3 uploading, and various other activities that I plan to pursue Very Soon!

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NOVEMBER 18, 2001: We just discovered that Wiccan priestess, author/teacher and activist Starhawk, along with a fellow anti-globalization activist, Lisa Fithian, was detained at the U.S./Canadian border, while on the way to participate in actions against the Group of 20 Conference, the IMF and World Bank in Ottawa, on Monday, November 12. Starhawk did in fact make it to Ottawa, but her companion risked arrest over the course of two days, and Starhawk's computer was confiscated for examination by border agents. Starhawk feels the message in this is that, since corporate interests enjoy the privilege of open borders, ordinary citizens (including activists) must fight for the same freedom of movement and the pursuit of their visions for the future. All those in pursuit of visions of peace and freedom, be prepared to struggle against mounting forces of repression and control in the days to come!

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SAMHAIN, OCTOBER 31, 2001: Now the veil between our world and the world of Spirit is at its thinnest point at this, the Celtic New Year. We need the wisdom and guidance of our ancestors as never before. May hospitality conquer hostility, let the hungry be fed, the grieving be comforted, the walking dead be revived in the Cauldron of Regeneration! Let our enemies be invited to share the feast, that they may in time be transformed! This is a time that is not a time, the space between the years, the lifted veil between the worlds. We need the peaceful messages of Qawwali music as never before, and the chorus which declares that just maybe this world isn't dying--maybe She's heavy with child.

TOGETHER ACROSS THE WORLD!! SALAAM/SHALOM/SÍOCHÁIN/PEACE!!!

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MANY THANKS to our visiting speaker HANS VON SPONECK for a wonderful free lecture and discussion period yesterday evening at University Temple United Methodist Church. Mr. Von Sponeck spoke both here and in a radio interview broadcast on KIRO-FM on his experiences with the Iraq Oil-for-Food Program and the Iraq Sanctions issue generally. He had some eye-popping information to share with us on the punitive nature of the Sanctions regime and the flat-out dishonesty of US Government interests which have dominated the UN Security Council for many years now. His is a most encouraging voice to all of us who are struggling to end the sanctions and establish more humane foreign policies that truly speak from the hearts of Americans of conscience and goodwill. It was a pleasure to visit and speak with him last night--may he make a return visit very soon! Many thanks also to Seattle songwriter Jim Page for his performance during the reception following the lecture!

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Follow this LairLink to sign the International ANSWER PEACE PLEDGE!

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SPECIAL NOTE (TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 6, 2001): I can't absolutely confirm this, but there is some evidence that someone has tapped the phones at New Wave Travel, the travel agency here in Seattle that I help out at part-time! I don't know if it is becoming a common practice to phonetap travel agencies generally, or if this office has been tapped because it is a local Muslim-owned business. Some of our local Muslim clients have also been barred from boarding planes at SeaTac Airport; one just recently was detained with his whole family by the FBI! The owner, Riz Samad (a close friend of mine) is a Muslim business owner and U.S. citizen of many years originally from Pakistan. This situation (if it turns out to be the case that our phones have been tapped) may merit some investigating by local media and others. I will try to keep you posted about this matter.

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Hear My Song, The Veil is Very Thin...

From time to time we meet certain companions.
We walk with them, we carry on conversations,
We sing the old songs, we play card games.
It takes time to suspect that something is fishy,
That the person at our side is merely an echo,
Of something that came before.

Now as the last leaves release their grip from the tree,
And the ghosts conclude their brief shore leave,
We must remain on earth.

Our new companion is winter.
And as we prepare to enter this new dialogue,
We light a candle,
And we hold on to our seed.
In case, by some miracle,
Spring should surprise us once again.

--Jason Webley, Ghostly Email Newsletter 10/31/01

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Finally, Samhain Eve (Halloween) is here, leaves are dancing in the streets, and a seemingly permanent chill is in the air. Our Accordion Guy Jason Webley has boarded the Swan Maiden's boat, and sailed across the Sunless Sea toward the Blessed Isles (or Avalon, or the Summerland), to rest, play, compose, decompose, or whatever, until the day he is washed up on our shores once again and comes back to haunt us. Our chapel's Dia de Los Muertos celebration is on for tonight, and I have invited his ghostly presence to join us. I love him and miss him so truly and deeply! Likewise, I am setting up memorials for Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, for Mary Makem (Tommy's wife), for Marie Tayler, Mimi Farina, and Aaliyah. I myself feel a need for regeneration at this time that is not a time, and have something private in mind for that purpose. I need to learn how to offer my artistic gifts to the world so that it will receive and welcome them, and I can live from doing what I love the most. So to all, a most blessed Samhain/Halloween/Dia de Los Muertos/Celtic New Year!! Sláinte Fada Dhaoibh Go Léir!!!

UPDATE (NOVEMBER 1, 2001): What a lovely Dia de Los Muertos observance we had at Agape Chapel last night! There was a very nice memorial altar table, paper hangings, food (of course), candles and the like, plus several special guests (including two of mine!). I invited Jason's ghost to come and join us; since he did not, to my knowledge, materialize, I got out my guitar and sang a couple of Webley songs after dinner for those who were still there. Plus, after I got home, I did in fact find my Island of Regeneration--a most awesome experience. Plus, Janet Brown dressed up in a skeleton costume and squirted Silly String all over everyone's doors while I was on the Island! Altogether, a great Samhain was had by all, and I have sloughed off my corporate-directed work persona much as Jason shed his old performance persona last year, via bonfire! This should certainly help me delve deeper into my TRUE work, once it takes properly...

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When the Raven Calls Your Name, and the Barn Owl Starts Her Flight...

"The corn mother is going over the fields.
The leaves get so pretty just before they fall.
A bunch are about ready to do their big dance.
They've been waiting their entire lives for this.
Be careful. But not too careful."
--Jason Webley (quote from email newsletter)

That's right, fellow LairLurkers and Guerrilla Concert cronies, it's time once again for the JASON WEBLEY HALLOWEEN CONCERT!! As it has been drilled into our heads a few times already, be sure to be on time at The Paradox Theater at 6 PM SHARP on the evening of Saturday, October 27! This will also be our final Guerrilla Concert Event of the season, as Jason has invited us to bring instruments for the post-concert procession to an unspecified someplace which, as he described said unspecified locale, "can hold around 170 people comfortably." Jason relayed this info, in addition to stacks of his trademark pocket flyers, at the Ground Zero Concert this past Saturday, October 20. Cozy little joint, is Ground Zero. The other artists on that night (Homage to Catalonia, Amy Mahardy, and Waiting for Sirens) did fine sets as well. We were hoping that the guys from Sweet Science would be playing with Jason once again, but Jherek the bassist is off in Europe playing shows with an improv group whose name escapes me at present. This was my first sight of Jason since he left on tour (though I emailed him a welcome-home message prior to this). Pity both of us are a bit on the shy side--it was such a delight to see and speak with him again, I wanted to hug him to death to welcome him back! I projected this to him mentally the whole time I was there, but it wasn't quite the same somehow...and I think Jason must have hexed me in the drugstore last night (Wednesday, October 24)!! More on this later...

Anyway, the Halloween Show is on the Horizon! BE THERE (ON TIME)!!!

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TUESDAY, OCTOBER 23, 2001: Am I the only one who thought of sex in the wake of the terrorist attacks of September 11? As I wrote some of my relatives by email recently, after the initial shock of the news began to fade, all I wanted to do was make love in the face of all the emotion, shock, grief, fear, anger, and calls for war and vengeance. I wanted to sleep in a big huddle with everyone I have ever fallen in love with. Even now, I have no taste for killing and bloodshed. I hear that bullies only understand violent responses to their bullying; but since our nation is widely considered the world's biggest bully, who will take it on themselves to slap us around? Most likely those who perpetrated the terrorist attacks thought they were doing that very thing. And now we have turned around and resorted to the same bullying tactics in response. And I'm sure the rest of the world simply loves us to death as a result...

Instead of bombing and destruction of infrastructure, let us stick to food aid, rebuilding of various countries' infrastructure, and assorted peacemaking efforts as weapons against terrorism. Let our government and military join us in the Iraq Sanctions Activist community in sending food, medicine, water purification equipment and other supplies to Iraq, Afghanistan and Israel/Palestine, and let them do so with the money they would have otherwise spent on bombing campaigns, arms sales and illegal and immoral trade sanctions administration!!

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Jason Webley West Coast Tour: It's A (Vegetable) Wrap!!

Well, cronies all, all that remains of the memorable West Coast Tour season is the October 20 show at the Ground Zero Teen Center in our own fair city of Bellevue, Washington. By all accounts that I have seen, Jason made quite a splash along the West Coast, and didn't let the trauma of September 11 deter him in any significant way! I still have some explaining to do to the folks in Arizona whom I made advance contact with regarding the cancelled gig in Tempe, AZ, but hopefully I will get to see/talk to Jason at the October 20 gig, and I wouldn't miss the Halloween Show for anything. As for the October 20 show, I'll have to convince the folks at church that I absolutely will not be able to accompany the church band up to Everett for our planned gig there (the date of which slipped my mind until the scheduling conflict dawned on me during our last rehearsal!); I don't think they will buy the part about my going to Scotland for the weekend! And by the way, our Elsewhere.org guy Josh was at the Olympia World News Gig, and has a new Album of Photos of that show to share with all and sundry (All photographs © 2001 by Josh Larios)! Halloween Carrots Ahoy!!!

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On Sunday evening, September 9, a bunch of us from Jason's Seattle crowd o' cronies held a benefit potluck to help him and his friend/driver, Ishan Vernallis, raise gas money for the trip. Jason even auctioned off the accordion that he took with him to Australia in the Spring of 2000, the very accordion on which he composed the new song, "Southern Cross"! Needless to say, a great time was had by all, Jason cooked up two tasty batches of his own borscht recipe, and we sent off our two young musical adventurers with great love, encouragement and the best of wishes. Have a great time, guys, and come back to us safe and sound! I miss you already!!

Here is a photo album of our Potluck at Chapel 303 (All photographs © 2001 by Josh Larios).

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A Prophetic Passage from Starhawk's First Novel

"When I was born, when I grew up in the fifties, we believed our country was the land of opportunity, where nobody was doomed to remain poor, where every person of goodwill had a chance to rise. By the time my child was born in the nineties, beggars were crowding the streets of every city, accosting shoppers in the malls. There were camps of homeless in the parks and empty lots, young people going to war with each other for drugs, booze and a few bucks. Our compassion eroded faster than the topsoil, and when we began to notice the earth changes, the droughts and the warming and the die-offs of the animals, the hole in the ozone layer and the epidemics of strange diseases that showed our own immune systems faltering, when we still had a chance to save so much and avert the worst of what followed, we continued to distract ourselves with war.

"What I say, what I have always said, is there has got to be an end of it. Now is the time to make an end.

"...What happens to the enemy who is invited to share the feast? Does the enemy not transform?
...Tell your enemies this: 'There is a place set for you at our table, if you will choose to join us'."

--Starhawk, The Fifth Sacred Thing (1993)

GOD/GODDESS/CHRIST/SPIRIT BLESS HUMANITY!!!

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Now IS The Time: I Will NOT 'Get With the Program'!!!

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 17, 2001: What a waste, to fight a terrorist's "holy war" for him. We are now in our second week of (allegedly) bombing "military targets" in Afghanistan, our missiles miss their targets a significant percentage of the time and decimate civilian neighborhoods and villages instead, while the REAL terrorists who are mailing anthrax to people are most likely right here on U.S. soil. Have our fighting forces caught any terrorists yet? My fellow Americans, do you feel any safer? We have simply given Bin Laden all the counter-provocation he needs to recruit new followers/martyrs for his insane "holy war." In fact, we are setting up his "holy war" for him; all he has to do is kick back in his cave, watch it happen, and send his boys out another provocative pep talk via Al-Jazeera now and again. What we are doing is committing high-tech terrorism in retaliation for low-tech terrorism. And anyone here who doesn't get their rocks off on such a waste of time, money and human life is now the object of hatred, contempt and crazed preaching about our lack of respect for the dead of September 11. "It's our patriotic duty to support the wholesale slaughter of dark-skinned Muslim civilians to make ourselves feel tough, proud and patriotic! How dare you use your freedom of speech to challenge our patriotic blood sport?!!" (And needless to say, much of the American public gets a similar erotic buzz over the death penalty--the nation's second favorite pasttime. Death penalty opponents such as myself are often threatened with personal harm and even hell and damnation merely for opposing THAT form of blood sport too. It's like a form of sacrificial cult, projecting collective evil onto one or more condemned criminals to be purged. Hence my overwhelming relief, a few years ago, when Susan Smith cheated the gallows--and the bloodsport cult). Sigh...such pontification often makes me want to holler, "YEAH!! I'm an evil, unpatriotic, anti-American, terrorist-loving, leftist peacenik! So SUE me!!" Oh, well. I'll just stand my ground, act intelligent and dignified, and let people foam at the mouth at my sheer audacity of questioning their orgasmic bloodfest...Meanwhile, please check out the Iraq LairLinks link above for our large page of links to activist organizations fighting against the sanctions on Iraq. Another page of Peace and Justice Activist LairLinks is also In Progress!

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MONDAY, OCTOBER 8, 2001: The U.S. and Britain have begun air strikes on Afghanistan, originally for the purpose of capturing Osama Bin Laden, dead or alive, and now with the expanded purpose of toppling the Taliban regime. While we at the Lair would shed no tears over the downfall of the Taliban, such downfall should be engineered by the people of Afghanistan, not imposed by outside forces. As the "military targets" include urban electrical grids, communications centers such as radio stations, airports, etc. in the middle of major population centers, there cannot help but be large-scale civilian casualties; already masses of people have fled urban centers throughout Afghanistan. We hope and pray that the Afghan people are aware that not all Americans favor this invasion of their country, and that we know that their lives are no less precious than our own.

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Jason Webley West Coast Tour Now Underway!

Today, Saturday, October 13, is Day 34 of Jason Webley's first West Coast U.S. tour!! Have the Accordion Guy and his faithful sidekick really been away THAT long?!! This is the home stretch, folks; Jason and Ishan are on their way back to the home front at last! Rumors on what will or may happen at the Halloween Show and beyond are abounding now on the Jason Webley Forum. Jason, taciturn as usual, is not giving out any info about this in advance, aside from promising "a very full evening." This evening, Saturday the 13th, is the last "tour gig" of the season; tonight our young friends are back in Washington, headlining at Olympia World News in our fair state's capitol of the same name, alongside the band Concave!! As we all know by now, the tour will actually conclude in our own Bellevue, WA, at a club ominously titled Ground Zero, of all things, on October 20 (all ages, $5 cover). Now, if we can only talk Jason into another little party prior to Halloween, so we can debrief him on the tour, share photos and/or tapes, if any were taken, and generally catch up on things (over vegetarian fare, of course)!! Anyway, we'll keep you posted on whatever transpires from here on out...

OOPS!! Sudden changes, additions and deletions to the West Coast Tour schedule means that I unwittingly screwed up on this page recently! As of now, it appears that the Tempe gig, about which I have been notifying all kinds of folks down Phoenix way (including the New Times and the major Phoenix daily papers, requesting calendar listings) has been CANCELLED, to be replaced by the abovementioned dinnertime gig at the University of Santa Cruz. The ASU crowd will no doubt be saddened and disappointed at losing their chance to memorize the "Aardvark Song". Oh, well, hopefully this gig can be rescheduled sometime in the not-too-distant future. My apologies to all Phoenix accordion fans for the sudden change of plans (but hey, I didn't make them!!). When the glass is full...

I miss Jason something terrible by now, after more than four weeks of his absence! Jason and Ishan, if you happen to read this, send me an e-postcard at karen@capitolhill.net! I have my ticket to the Halloween concert now, and I'm hoping to see you at Ground Zero as well, a week from Saturday, if I can afford the cover! I guess you could say I have a new job now, busking at the Market and looking for other performance spots as well--are there any good ones in your neighborhoods? My dearest tomatoes, my heart and soul are aching for your return and musical presence! Love, peace and courage to both of you...

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A Heartfelt Thank You: A really cool site that was linked to Liam Clancy's website. A photomemorial collection of worldwide tributes to those who died at the World Trade Center and the Pentagon building.

An Afghan's Plea for Restraint: Read Afghan-American writer Tamim Ansary's warning cry about Bin Laden's provocation of both the West and the Islamic World in his aim to get both sides into a devastating religious war.

Thank God/dess, I am not alone in opposing the national movement toward war. Here is a fine Wired Fool Commentary (Eric's September 16 entry), with which I am quite in sympathy.

Fellow activists for lifting the sanctions against the people of Iraq have condemned the terrorist attacks on the East Coast and implored restraint, in this press release from Education for Peace in Iraq Center (EPIC).

Read Hold the Vision, a passionate call to activist communities not to be silenced or driven underground, by Wiccan peace activist and author Starhawk.

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"Casualties seldom counted
Are the ones the guns invade--
The ones who work the land,
The ones who love the land,
Where dreams of peace are made."
--Holly Near

Tuesday, September 11, 2001: Early this morning, the east coast of our nation was struck by multiple terrorist attacks. Nobody has yet claimed responsibility for these acts, but many people are concluding that operatives of Osama bin Laden are the perpetrators. I fear intensely for the safety and well-being of all my Muslim friends and acquaintances of South Asian and Middle Eastern origin, some of whom have been repeatedly harassed and otherwise traumatized in the past during such events as the Gulf War and the bombing of the Oklahoma City Federal Building. I also send prayers and deepest concern to the families and friends of those lost in the destruction of the World Trade Center in New York City (which I visited a couple of times with my High School Latin Club over 20 years ago), and the burning and collapse of a portion of the U.S. Pentagon building. Also, I hope and pray that my parents (now vacationing in Scotland for their 40th wedding anniversary) are able to make their flight home on September 15 without undue delays [Note: my folks did indeed return home to Tennessee during a long, crazed trek back across the pond on Saturday, September 15. They were welcomed back home by their cat, Bridget, who grudgingly allowed them back into her house after their long and unexplained absence].

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PROPOSED NONVIOLENT SOLUTION FOR THE CAPTURE OF OSAMA BIN LADEN: My fellow Americans, this plan just occurred to me the other night. Here's how it works: we go to the Taliban Government in Afghanistan, and offer to swap them the Revs. Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson for Osama Bin Laden. Our argument would go something like this: "Listen, gentlemen: as you know, Osama Bin Laden is getting to be a major liability for you guys; and Messrs. Falwell and Robertson are both making a laughingstock of America, and have long been a serious pain in the butt, in any case. However, if you can put up with them, Revs. Falwell and Robertson could be very useful to you. You may be aware that each has built a highly successful career and made a fortune through religious fundraising appeals for decades now. Why, as your administration's financial ministers and advisors, they could virtually turn Afghanistan's economy around--that is, if they don't drive you bonkers and bring a death sentence down on their heads first. But anyway, for your agreement to turn Bin Laden over to us, and get yourselves off the warhook, you would be getting a pair of experienced and astute financial wizards in return. And if you act now, without further stalling, we might be willing to throw in the Rev. Jesse Jackson for good measure. As your new official speechwriter, he could make your future public statements infinitely more interesting than they currently sound. So, what d'ye say, dudes--do we have a swap?" Just a suggestion...

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UPDATE, SEPT. 22: We have just finished our first Peace Rally in Westlake Park, which will likely be only the first of many peace actions here in Seattle and elsewhere around the country and the world. I will link to reports of the rally as they are published, as well as designing and executing a LairLinks page for peace activist groups and forums. Now is not the time for inaction! Salaam/Peace/Siochain!!

SPECIAL NOTE: My friends at New Wave Travel experienced the trauma of a bomb threat last Thursday, September 20: only one of the threats and other hate crimes directed at Muslim-owned businesses here in the Northwest, and around the country. Many other people of Middle-Eastern ancestry are currently fleeing the country with one-way plane tickets. Clearly, we need to band together and stand up to bigots and hatemongers, just as we are now standing together against terrorism.

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Bumbershoot 2001: The LairMistress's Festival Busking Debut!!

By the third morning of this year's Bumbershoot Arts Festival, I felt as though I had been living at the Seattle Center for quite some time. I turned 37 that day--Sunday, September 2 (a birthday I share with my longtime Irish music hero, Liam Clancy)--and I began busking at the Festival with my guitar and bodhran on the same morning (no doubt inspired by Jason Webley's valiant efforts to combat the noise from the stupid Circus spectacle that stuck out on the Fountain Lawn like a rotten front tooth all weekend!). I am also back singing at Pike Place Market these days, and hope to do more activity focussed on my own music in Jason's five-week absence!

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SPECIAL NOTE: The thoughts and prayers of Seattle musicians go out to the family, friends and fans of Aaliyah, the rising R&B singer and actress killed in the Bahamas yesterday, August 26, along with eight other passengers, while on her way back from shooting a music video on Abaco Island. A lifelong performer dedicated to singing, dancing and acting, Aaliyah Haughton was a top-selling R&B sensation at age 15, and never turned her back on her dreams. I am not overly familiar with her work, but I was certainly aware of her presence in music and film. To lose a promising star with such enormous potential at such a young age is always so sad. Condolences can be posted at the link above and elsewhere. May her passion for her art continue to inspire us all...

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Jason Gets Comfortable!

Jason Webley at the Kirkland Performance Center on Friday, August 24, 7:30 PM

There is going to be a highly intriguing (and for some of Kirkland's populace, potentially frightening) event at the charming Kirkland Performance Center this Friday, August 24. Seattle's one and only Jason Webley will kick back at the Steinway Grand Piano and make one last-ditch attempt to Kill Time. With him will be a large coterie of his friends, fans and Guerrilla Concert Cronies, who have been instructed in advance to "invite all your friends, all your enemies, and all the people you are indifferent to." Warning! Said coterie, of which I am a member, staged a dark and passionate orgy of destruction at Rocket Science Studios a week ago Friday, all directed at the sinister presence of Olde Man Time (who is NOT our f***ing friend!). Therefore, we cannot be counted on to be on our best behavior at some highbrow Kirkland venue. Highbrow Kirkland culture will never be the same after this coming weekend. All ages, $7.00. The fine accompanying talents of Sweet Science, the "tallest band in the world" (Jason's words), will also be in evidence. Be very afraid, Kirkland!

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Today, AUGUST 16, 2001, is the fourth anniversary of the passing of Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan. In observance of this anniversary, I brought my commemorative notebook (in which I have been recording observances of Nusrat's transition since two days after his death on August 16, 1997), and my homemade Advent candles to burn for my yearly commemorative ceremony at Agape Lutheran Campus Chapel.

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SPECIAL NOTE (Monday, September 17, 2001): Something has gone horribly wrong with this page, and all entries after the two above have been wiped out. I will try to replace them to the best of my memory shortly.

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Among other things, how could we do without:

Seattle's 2001 Guerrilla Concert Season Kicks Off With a Bang (and a Fiddle)!

Here, once again, is my Review of Event 1, the now-infamous "Bring Your Instrument to the Harbor Steps Day", held on Sunday, July 1, 2001. Read all about it!

Likewise, here once again is a Wired Fool Review of Event 2, "Stare in the Sky at Nothing Day", on Sunday, July 8, 2001 at Pike Place Market. This one didn't work nearly as well at the Bite of Seattle, even with Jason leaping atop his accordion case and roaring out, "This event is EEEEVILLL!!!" Here, also, is a link to the Wired Fool Site. All material published there is © by Eric Soroos.

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July 27, 2001 found Rahat Ali Khan and Party in their debut performance at Shoreline Auditorium. It was a lovely reunion with Rahat and Farrukh Fateh Ali Khan, and tabla artist Dildar Hussain, all of whom I hadn't seen in nearly five years.

Read the LairMistress's Review of our Reunion with Rahat!

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Earlier in July, we mourned the death and celebrated the life of Bread and Roses founder Mimi Farina, who passed away at her home in California after a long and valiant struggle with lung cancer. Bread and Roses, however, are determined to live on; may she remain with them in spirit!

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"How can we enjoy the flavor in our mouths,
When already we're dreaming of the taste of the next bite?"
--Jason Webley

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