Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Politics and Gold Plated Steel

Tuesday I worked with Marvin Chernoff on a political spot in Charleston. Linda Ketner For Congress. He told us the amazing story of meeting Martin Luther King Jr, but I have to get permission from him to tell you the details. I will say I had chills.

I dragged David along to do sound, as all my sound buddies were booked. His three Wednesday shows in North Carolina for Clinton had canceled, so Troy (David's business partner) opted not to kill me for taking David away. That is, until the election results from Pennsylvania began coming in and four new shows for Hillary suddenly appeared. But, by then we were driving back to Columbia.

We both really liked Linda. She is a genuine humanitarian, and has good ideas of how to integrate business principals into government. Our favorite was her discussion of the need for outcome based measurements, particularly in education.

I have a feeling Linda would agree---meetings don't equal work!

As the political race here heats up, I've been thinking a lot about Zimbabwe. My theory is that Mugabe is waiting to release the election results, not because he lost (I think everyone knows that), but because he is doing the same thing some mystery people did in Ethiopia. He is secretly switching out all the country's gold for gold plated steel bars and plans to make a get-a-way as soon as he's stolen everything, or anything, valuable left in the country. My theory sputters a bit on the where-will-he-go part. Maybe he will broker a power sharing deal that will allow him to live out his days in his Harare mansion with plenty of . . . everything.

Including "his" gold, perhaps.

Oh, wait, I just read something, guess the Ethiopian gold scammers are no longer a mystery. This scam could be made into a movie. But, I still stand near my Mugabe theory.

And here's a petition to sign, supporting what was begun by the South African dock workers who refused to unload the arms shipment from China to Zimbabwe.

Thinking outside the States

I talked to Jennifer in the Dominican Republic today. She said the tornado was incredibly scary and must have been huge to do all the damage it did. She also said the hail was crazy. It rained again last night, and all the water that came in the roof of the school swept down the stairs and flooded the second floor, where all the rescued supplies had been relocated to keep them out of the first floor flooding. I'm sure that had to be discouraging.

Today my shoot canceled, so I worked on the Kenya project for our church. The church has committed to build a dorm for orphans and street kids in Mathare Valley, a HUGE slum in Nairobi. Marigold and Jane, the Kenyan woman who runs the school and feeding program for these kids, will come speak at the end of the month, and we want to have $40,000 raised by then, so we can hand them a check to finish the dorms. To remind everyone about the project, we need a high impact display for the church foyer.

We considered big photos, and my friend Debbie and I have gone round and round brainstorming about how to do it affordably. The mounting is the biggest expense - it is easy to spend hundreds of dollars on a single life size photo. Today I wondered if we put cheap, 4x8 foot sheets of OSB together in triangles, if that would make a good mounting surface and give us a space to show the video as well. I mocked up what they might look like, and tonight we met with a guy who said he would help build them. So, now I need to spend some quality time in Photoshop to make it work on my end.

They have to be up in a week!