Sunday, July 16, 2006

Action-free Activism

Or, as I like to call it, activism for the sake of activism. The primary purposeof this particular activity, pun intended, is to provide the illusion that I am making a difference, really doing something out there, wherever "out there" is.

Protests are great, especially in place of some constructive effort to repair the problem, effort aside from protesting, that is.

Now, ease up...especially you wackos in Cambridge whose heads are about to explode. I'm not saying activism in and of itself is "bad"... but it not a substitute for positive constructive action, which is the way it seems to turn out a lot around here.

Recently, the word came out that The Someday Cafe (an early participant in the resurgance of Davis Sq) had lost its lease. Apparently, the landlord knew the lease was running out and needed to be renewed, but didn't notify the Someday owners (not that he has to).

Now I'm not sure if it is the bad coffee or the smell of feet that draws crowds to the Someday, but the place is adored. I admit, I kinda like the noisy, cluttered ambiance of the joint, and I dig the new decor. You also never know what kind of music you might hear there, and whether or not it will be blaring. It is different and exemplifies Davis Sq itself.

"Save the Someday" petitions are being circulated. A meeting was held there today and a good number of folks showed up to support the effort. That being said, my roommate (disappointed he could not attend due to prior plans) was up-in-arms at the mere thought of booting the beloved Someday Cafe from its locale. He was, and is, ready to fight for the Someday.

"Kick out the Someday? Bullshit!"

He isn't going to take this lying down. He will make a difference. He will... protest?

Making this situation even more amusing for me personally (and proving my point) is the fact that in the four years I have lived with this kid, four blocks from the Someday, we have been there together exactly once, and it was my idea. I can;t say that this guy has been in there more than once or twice in the last two years.

I can see why he deems this a cause clearly worth fighting for.

Any notion that "the man" is pushing someone around, or some decision is being made for business reasons sends this guy into a lather.

Lest I sound like a Republican, I will claim no political affiliation. What irks me is someone bitching about homelessness and how The Republicans are screwing them, or this group or that group, yet doing nothing.

I have been annoyed by these huge horseflies that have somehow infiltrated the house. I asked my roomate if he had seen them.

"You mean the ones in the bathroom?"

I had seen two in the bathroom myself, on separate days, one in my bedroom, and tonight- two in the livingroom.

"Yeah... those. How many have you killed?"

"Ah... none."

"So let me get this straight. You saw these huge horsflies that LOVE to munch on people in their sleep, they were trapped in the tiny bathroom... and you walked out and left them there?"

"Yeah." (sheepish)

Are you fucking kidding me? You can't kill a housefly right in front of you, but you can save a coffee shop you haven't been to in three years?

Of course not, the sticking point there would be the positive, constructive action.

Worried about homeless people not getting enough to eat? Don;t waste time griping about Mitt Romney, he doesn't give a shit. Go buy a pound of roast beef, a loaf of bread and make some friggin' sandwiches.

Not to come off like a goody two-shoes, but for YEARS I ranted about this government policy and that government party and never did a damn thing to really make anything change. One day I was feeling rather sorry for myself, couldn't get out of my own head, so I went to Johnnie's Foodmaster, bought some cold cuts and a 12-pack of Coke and hit Harvard Sq.

As I doled out the sandwiches, I experienceda number of things I never experienced bad-mouthing the right wing from my couch. This is my favorite.

I asked one guy if he wanted ham or turkey. He said, "Haven't you read Leviticus? I'll take the turkey."

The guy was articulate as hell, clearly on the comeback trail...yet I sat wondering how he wound up there, wondered how close I whad been to joining him at my bleakest moments.

If anyone is free Friday, a few of us are getting together to voice concerns about the flies in my bathroom. If anyone can make a few signs,it would be great. I'll take care of the coffee, and I believe someone (forgot who- OOPS!) agreed to bring cookies (sure hope the horse flies don't get 'em:(


Blogger Ron Newman said...

I'm not sure what's "action-free" about the activism around the Someday. You've got a group of employees putting together a business plan. You've got other folks collecting petition signatures to try to persuade Mr. Crepe to either locate elsewhere or go into partnership with those employees. Now the mayor and the local ward alderman have become involved, too.

I posted an account of yesterday's meeting to .

9:38 AM  
Blogger Korte said...

I like the Someday.

I travel a lot and recently when I was asked to tip fellow travelers to "gems" in my neighborhood, I listed the Someday Cafe.

Um... if you read the article again, you may notice that the "action-free activism" story line is about my roommate and actually has nothing to do with the Someday or the attempts to save it by the staff and cafe regulars.

That is actually inspiring.

I found it amusing that the man (roommate) has not been to the Someday more than once in the last two years.

3:03 PM  
Blogger Debbie said...

To Ron - I was one of the people supporting the Someday and, in fact, wrote the press release and contacted the media about the meeting and I took absolutely no offense to what Korte wrote!

Ron, I am right there with you regarding the passion behind Saving the Someday - but like Korte said, re-read what he wrote and he did not knock the Someday at all nor the activism behind it but rather his roomies LACK of activism around it.

Korte responded perfectly so I guess I shouldn't add more! = and by the way, Korte, I hereby volunteer to do whatever publicity is necessary to help you with your horsefly situation but I will not rely on your roommate to assist me in any way, shape, or form.

5:47 PM  
Blogger Dot Dwyer said...

I am organizing a protest against Korte. Because he's another Male Oppressor. . .He hasn't seen "Thelma & Louise " or "The Wedding Planner" -Mysoginist !

9:01 PM  
Blogger Korte said...

By the way, Steel Magnolias sucked, too, Dot.

10:56 AM  
Blogger Korte said...

P.S. Did you see the way Debbie came in and defended me?

I am getting all misty-eyed right now.

10:57 AM  
Blogger Dot Dwyer said...

Who's "Debbie" ? I'm still protesting you . . . you never carry tampons-Chuavinist!

7:43 PM  
Blogger Debbie said...


I will ALWAYS swoop down and defend you! - even if you did knock my seeing "The Lakehouse"!

But truly, I will swoop. :-)

8:35 PM  
Blogger Korte said...

Deb... I appreciate it, but Lakehouse... it's crap.

10:37 AM  

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