Motley Moose – Archive

Since 2008 – Progress Through Politics

Occupy Together Everywhere

Occupy DC yesterday was a hoot.  I had a great time.  I wish I was 20 years younger, because I really wanted to stay overnight.  But my spine just cannot handle sleeping on the ground any more.  Even just sitting on the pavement in the giant human 99 hurt.  Besides, my wonderful, handy, hard-working husband Just. Can’t. Cook., so I need to be here to feed him!

We have more occupy sites popping up — the Wilmington area, Dover, Annapolis, Baltimore, Philadelphia.  This is great.  We need the energy these gatherings generate to fuel us through the rough times we currently endure.  And we have to take this energy home.  We need to incorporate it into our daily lives.  So let’s think about this for a minute.  We need to occupy ourselves, and make this into a truly national, organic, holistic movement.

We need to occupy together everywhere.



What do you mean by this, Noor? you ask.

Okay.  Think a moment.  What else does occupy mean?  What other definitions of the word occupation are there?  This movement started with the sense of taking up a position in space.  There’s a military connotation here, in the sense of occupying conquered territory in a disciplined, orderly manner.  But to occupy oneself — to do something, to immerse oneself in a creative process, the practice of a craft and a skill — now we are talking about a truly creative revolution.  Take up an occupation:  do something you love and don’t worry about money.  Make something beautiful, or useful, or do something nurturing and loving.  Make new communities, everywhere, of people exchanging the gifts of their hands, their minds, their creativity, their caring.  Let’s make this a national swap meet, a national freeshare.



Unemployed or underemployed, frustrated and bored?  Listen up.  Read carefully.  I think I’ve found a way out of our morass.  The Facebook pages will give people local ways to reach other occupiers in the various cities.  I’d love it if the OccupyTogether people would steal my idea and set up a connections page.



Losing weight?  Don’t just take your clothes to Goodwill — unless you really are sick of wearing the same ol’, same ol’.  Can you sew?  Great!  Take that shirt, that dress, that skirt, those pants, that jacket apart and resize it.  Add some personal detail to it.  You can’t sew?  Okay, there are people like me who can, and will, restyle your clothes for you, and the odds are good we need something done that we just can’t do ourselves, because we don’t have the skill set.  You could make us business cards on your computer so we can print out our own, or mow our grass, weed and do fall garden clean-up chores, or do an oil change on your exchange partner’s car.  Or swap out drywall repair, or detailing the car, or for the hunters among you, a side of venison ground up for winter chili or dog food.  Your blue jeans are gigantic, and we all know they are a pain in the ass to resize — it’s the rivets and the layers in the hems and flat-felled seams.  A lot of home sewing machines just can’t manage those layers.  Find others who have also lost weight and can’t wear the size you need — make a round-robin of this, cycle the blue jeans through the network until they find someone who needs them.  You’ll get the size you need.  You say you can spin but you can’t knit and you need new socks? (This would be me.  My knitting looks awful.  And I’ve got tons of handspun wool.)  Find a knitter, offer him or her a big skein of handspun for their own use if they’ll take another skein and knit you some socks.  Got a bumper crop of zucchini you’re staring at, wondering how the hell you’re going to eat it all before the first frost?  Need someone to tutor your child in math?  Got a gorgeous framed print from a parent’s closed-down home that’s too good for a yard sale, but doesn’t suit your tastes?  Need someone to fix the wiring in a lamp you love, but you don’t have the tools to do it?  Trade skills.  Trade knowledge.  Trade stuff.



When we do this, we don’t just adhere to the old maxim “waste not, want not” that got our grandparents through the Great Depression.  We also help each other create meaningful lives.  Even better, we keep what little money we might have and screw the corporate greedheads who thrive on our shopping habits, our need for services that they monopolize, corporatize, and charge big bucks for when we don’t have it.  We’ve been knocking on the doors, screaming our thousand million questions in frustration and fury.  This is our answer.  This is our creative peaceful revolution.  This is our constructive conscientious refusal to play their games.



In the process, we will keep ourselves busy, we will find ourselves feeling useful, we will start the journey out of black despair back into light and joy.  We will heal our spirits.  We will find wholeness.  We will prove to the corporate world that we are stronger than they are, that we really and truly do not need them — but they cannot exist without us.  We will break free from their cage.



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