Fight like a lady

I admit that I had not heard about Clementine Ford until earlier this year. As the person who books the speakers at a public library, I came across her while searching for suitable people for our author events.

I was intrigued by the title of her book Fight Like a Girl and reserved the print and digital copies to prepare for a possible future introduction. I still had not come across her in any media because I must tailor my feeds to see other things.

Our event booked out quickly and unfortunately due to a ‘minor bingle’ in her car on the way to us, the event was abandoned with apologies to the keen audience. We rescheduled to a later date. This booked out immediately as well, so the eagerness to hear her message was solid.

I read the book! And hated it. My review on Goodreads:

“Clementine Ford obviously does not comprehend the evocative power of words because this toxic rant does nothing towards bettering equality for all human beings. Remove the meaningless and unintelligent profanities and the book’s actual content is reduced to a third. And most of what is left is tacky personal confession a wise person would leave in the scribbled complaints of a school girl’s diary; and not made public. In her epilogue she proudly states that “this book is a love letter to the girls.” There is no love in this book!”

The last book I recall hating with as much feeling was How It Feels by Brendan Cowell back in 2010 and here is that review.

Of course I am all for equality and women’s rights; indeed human rights. I know women are treated badly throughout the world. Clementine’s message is nothing new when it comes to feminism. Is she just getting attention because of her poor language? I love to be challenged by new thoughts, so it’s not about holding fast to quaint old views, but there seems to be a huge shortage of manners, respect, courtesy, and dare I say actual femininity.

I hand-balled the hosting task to a lovely quiet gentlemanly male colleague, who did his research then introduced her with warm thoughtful and well-considered words. What a guy! His introduction and the provocative talk by Clementine were appreciated by the crowd.

Profanities lack intelligence I think. They are aggressive blockers of conversation. Politics aside, I used to enjoy Paul Keating’s colourful and inventive sledging when he was in government. His wit and ingenious use of vocabulary left others mouths agape.

I must get on to my next read in preparation Music and Freedom – sounds promising.

Given my recent lack of regularity with posting to my blog, I’m sure I won’t succeed with the challenge to blog every week. The most I have posted was back in 2008, the first year of my blog, when I posted 33 times. But here goes … #glamblogweekly #libblogweekly

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Live & Local

IMG_7833It has been a busy week for me as I have organised the local events to celebrate National Library Week.

We kicked off the week with the Sydney Writers Festival.

This year’s Sydney Writers Festival was live-streamed across the country, and it was my job to liaise with the organisers to have it broadcast at Frankston Library.

The quality of the live stream was excellent and it really felt as though you had front row seats in Sydney. Andrea Louise Thomas was the MC for our local event and she had prepared questions for audience discussion after each talk.

IMG_0446I was fortunate to enjoy these wonderful sessions on the Friday:

The ‘live and local’ sessions continued on the Saturday and Sunday, at the library, and these were very much appreciated by those that attended.

National Simultaneous Storytime was celebrated with much hat wearing fun by lots of children who took part at our libraries. We also offered video versions on our Facebook page.

IMG_7848The current Miles Franklin Award winning author Sofie Laguna spoke eloquently to an eager crowd mid-week; The Eye of the Sheep a source of much discussion.

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_7842A local pianist Yani played our old possum-painted plunka during two lunchtime periods. She competed bravely against dodgy piano keys, seagulls, crows, traffic noise, wind and rain. I sat contentedly listening to her imperfect renditions of Beethoven, Schubert, Chopin and others.

We conclude our busy week with a live music concert with Sympatico.

A competition is yet to be concluded. We posed the question: ‘When was the first free library provided in Frankston?’ The answer is on display in our libraries.

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Surrender

Floating in a circular pool of warm water I gaze up beyond the dark umbrella of Tea Tree branches to the soft green leaves swaying with the breeze above. The blue sky streaked with wisps of morning sea mist rising with the day

The mineral water cradles my limp body as I surrender to the moment. All thoughts are gone; all plans, worries, identity, tasks, dissipate with each warm bubble that tickles my back as it rises to the surface.

Screen Shot 2015-07-09 at 4.16.46 pmLater after a hot rock massage, my headache intensified and my brain foggy; I realize I had let go of my self and let my body and mind surrender to the elements. This I achieved without effort and without meditation.

Last weekend I went along to see and hear Marianne Williamson talk about her message of Love. Her ideas, based upon the book A Course In Miracles (ACIM), stretch the mind beyond the everyday.

One lady in the audience bravely confessed, “I don’t know why I am here today. I don’t understand anything you are saying.” Relentless in her message and passion, Marianne replied, “Well you are here so that says something. But you have a choice now; you can leave, or you can stay, let the words flow over you, and see what comes of that.” She went on to tell us all that these ideas are not beginner level entry into the spiritual ideas, and her message presumes an understanding of the spiritual life.

Screen Shot 2015-07-09 at 4.16.57 pmI have read her book “A Return To Love” that was first published in 1992. This book is her response and explanation of ACIM. Her book provides an accessible explanation of the heftier manuscript.

In the past, I had tried to follow the 365 lessons of the ACIM workbook and after just seven days I felt my mind shift towards uncomfortable craziness. I found it hard to continue. How does one stay grounded and functioning in this world I wonder? And yet I continue to strive and search for that deeper meaning and understanding. I have always been on this path.

Marianne Williamson spoke relentlessly and passionately all day. I felt energized when I left; but I did not feel any closer to grasping these ideas. But as I floated mindlessly in the warm pool of water yesterday, I realize it is possible to surrender to a larger story.