Author Archives: Harbridge Christina

A Brave and Startling Truth

A Brave and Startling Truth   

Maya Angelou
American Poet, Author and Actress

  We, this people, on a small and lonely planet 
Traveling through casual space 
Past aloof stars, across the way of indifferent suns 
To a destination where all signs tell us 
It is possible and imperative that we learn 
A brave and startling truth 

And when we come to it 
To the day of peacemaking 
When we release our fingers 
From fists of hostility 
And allow the pure air to cool our palms 

When we come to it 
When the curtain falls on the minstrel show of hate 
And faces sooted with scorn are scrubbed clean 
When battlefields and coliseum 
No longer rake our unique and particular sons and daughters 
Up with the bruised and bloody grass 
To lie in identical plots in foreign soil 

When the rapacious storming of the churches 
The screaming racket in the temples have ceased 
When the pennants are waving gaily 
When the banners of the world tremble 
Stoutly in the good, clean breeze 

When we come to it 
When we let the rifles fall from our shoulders 
And children dress their dolls in flags of truce 
When land mines of death have been removed 
And the aged can walk into evenings of peace 
When religious ritual is not perfumed 
By the incense of burning flesh 
And childhood dreams are not kicked awake 
By nightmares of abuse 

When we come to it 
Then we will confess that not the Pyramids 
With their stones set in mysterious perfection 
Nor the Gardens of Babylon 
Hanging as eternal beauty 
In our collective memory 
Not the Grand Canyon 
Kindled into delicious color 
By Western sunsets 

Nor the Danube, flowing its blue soul into Europe 
Not the sacred peak of Mount Fuji 
Stretching to the Rising Sun 
Neither Father Amazon nor Mother Mississippi who, without favor, 
Nurture all creatures in the depths and on the shores 
These are not the only wonders of the world 

When we come to it 
We, this people, on this minuscule and kithless globe 
Who reach daily for the bomb, the blade and the dagger 
Yet who petition in the dark for tokens of peace 
We, this people on this mote of matter 
In whose mouths abide cankerous words 
Which challenge our very existence 
Yet out of those same mouths 
Come songs of such exquisite sweetness 
That the heart falters in its labor 
And the body is quieted into awe 

We, this people, on this small and drifting planet 
Whose hands can strike with such abandon 
That in a twinkling, life is sapped from the living 
Yet those same hands can touch with such healing, irresistible tenderness 
That the haughty neck is happy to bow 
And the proud back is glad to bend 
Out of such chaos, of such contradiction 
We learn that we are neither devils nor divines 

When we come to it 
We, this people, on this wayward, floating body 
Created on this earth, of this earth 
Have the power to fashion for this earth 
A climate where every man and every woman 
Can live freely without sanctimonious piety 
Without crippling fear 

When we come to it 
We must confess that we are the possible 
We are the miraculous, the true wonder of this world 
That is when, and only when 
We come to it.

This poem was written and delivered in honor of the 50th anniversary of the United Nations.

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Netscape as a scapegoat?

Here is the story I remember: Netscape had a choice. Keep all of it’s intellectual property to itself and capitalize on it. Control the market. or

Hey. Open it up. Give it away. let everyone use it.

I hold this company in higher esteem than any kazillion dollar firm out there. The polio vaccine took years longer to come to fruition because labs were competing against each other to get there first. There wasn’t a sharing of information that could launch us toward the cure.

The same is true for cancer. For everything. We keep the information to ourselves so we can keep our funding. (or maybe for some to get the kudos)

At a dinner party I mentioned Netscape as an example of what the Green movement could do. If we could get everyone sharing information in some sort of “opensource” way – we’d innovate ourselves out of the mess we are in.

One of the party goers, a smart young technology guy who has likely forgotten more than I know about tech stuff, said “Netscape. They are dead. You need to update your metaphor.”

I was stunned. is that really how Netscape is seen in the tech world? Because they sold to AoL? Does a great deed die because we do not profit from it? Is it because Netscape had to lay off workers. Was he one of them?

It made me think about heroic measures. The unseen things that folks do for no accolade. The kind of thing that will likely need to happen to get us out of the steady decline we are in.

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A great film

A great film.  Showing January 26th in Alameda.

My husband is the filmmaker… btw.


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The free throw line isn’t free


I received this link from a reader on this blog in response to my blog about the school system.

I don’t agree with everything in this article – I do see an serious opportunity for an inspirational story or video. We know what will happen to one of these schools if a star player from the NFL or the NBA joined the team.. drummed up support.. coaching… and frankly, esteem.

We know it. If we shot a video of the famous sport guy and the team we’d see the team become something great.  When we believe in others.. when we help them find their divine spark by seeing it first.  It happens.  It is magical.

One of the most watched video’s on YouTube.. because it gives  goose bumps. I want goose bumps. So do you.

This is a call to any sports nut in Sacramento- please go to these schools and help the kids in the article. SHoot a movie of it so we can motivate everyone to start helping kids find their divine spark.

In 13 months, Allegory will have a department with the sole purpose to do just that. December 2009 will be our first class in our first school. I’m committed to stop complaining and start doing.  Not sure how I will get there.. I will.
Any ideas on how to penetrate the school bureaucracy – let me know!

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No child left untested

The scores are out.  Last year- the US kids scored 3rd in the world… this year we are 10th.

I don’t have a problem with us not being the best all the time.  Happiness and perfection do not always go hand in hand.

Clearly No Child Left Behind is not working.  My best friend is a school teacher in Florida.  In order to make time for all the tests, the children are only allowed recess one day a week.

Did you hear what I wrote?  We are all concerned about generation XXL and we are creating a school system that does not allow play outside.  No wonder our kids are not learning.  Teachers give out candy to try and get kids to behave since they can’t use recess as a carrot.
Remember when you were a kid>?  There were kids that were great in the classroom and kids who were great on the blacktop.  The primary gift an education system can give a kid is confidence.  Taking away a child’s physical play is abuse.  For all kids and particulary for those who are physical superstars.

my friend calls no child left behind “No teach left standing.”

I call it “No child left educated.”   We have got to revamp our school system and pay teachers more and develop programs that help a kid find their strength and make it better.  Marcus Buckingham, Now Discover your Strengths, talks about this for adults in the workplace.  We need to start when they are 1.

My son loves music.  No matter what is going on – if I put music on or sing to him… he glows.  He learns better.  This is his thing.  Our job is not to test him (I test really well – this is why I didn’t learn much in college.  I could test my way to an A.  Short term memory thing.  I forgot everything I learned in Physics.)

Stop testing.  Start fanning the flame of innovation, spirit, happiness, joy, running around….

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Little Susie Homemaker tips again

“I don’t know why it works, it does.”

Bad cough?  Vicks Vapor Rub:  NOT on your chest.  It is bad that way.  Instead, slather on your feet and wear thick socks at night.

I didn’t believe it.  I tried it.  Not a cough the entire night.  I woke up with out my cough.  Weird.

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“I don’t know why it works – it does.”

My brother-in-law said this as I watched him eat raisins from a jar.

White raisins soaked in gin.  Eat 9 of them in the morning.  Arthritis is better.  Incredibly better.  It works.



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Politically Correct Down Unda

Santa is not allowed to say HO HO HO in Australia.  It seems it is demeaning to women.

Search HO HO HO Australia – you will see it ain’t an urban legend.


We are going to PC ourselves to death.

HO HO HO.  there, I said it.  I mean HAPPY HAPPY HAPPY.  Not … … …  (I wont’ type the words as I get enough smut spam already)

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November 14.  In the Oakland airport.   13 young people ( I CAN’T TELL how old people are anymorel.)   All in gray jerseys.  Based upon their height I assume a basketball team.   The coach wearing a santa hat.   Singing songs.  Kids clapping.  Asking for pictures with the.  Clearly having fun.  Hugging.  I had tears in my eyes.

Two firemen.  In their fire stuff. Oakland. Guys we are are proud of.
One guy stands up and yells, “I miss thanksgiving???”
Momentary dampening of the singing.  The little kids circling around the team paused for a moment.

I yelled… “Hey!  What thanksgiving songs do you know buddy??  I stood up and applauded the boys singing.   A few other people did too.  They sang louder.

They were amazing.   i love humans.

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