|Marcos, Boo! (the jack russel) and Paco (the Africanized Chihuahua)|
Wednesday, February 26, 2014
EveryONE seems to hate on “criminals” (throughout human history, I might add), and thoughtlessly throws the adjective around. Therefore, let’s start by looking at the multiple definitions of “criminal.”
1. of the nature of or involving crime. (Note: Crimes are directly relative to the date and status quo, and are often subject to change. For example, at one time in US history, people of different races could not defecate on the same indoor plumbing equipment—WTF?!!!)
2. guilty of crime. (As we ALL KNOW, some “crimes du jour” are EVIL. You know, like the CRIME of being JEWISH back in Nazi Germany during the early 1940’s?)
3. Law. of or pertaining to crime or its punishment: a criminal proceeding. (Proceeding where, may I ask?)
4. senseless; foolish: It's criminal to waste so much good food. (*When you can put it in a “doggie-bag” and give it to the next hungry person you see!)
5. exorbitant; grossly overpriced: They charge absolutely criminal prices. (REALLY, what is NOT exorbitantly over-priced nowadays?! Does this mean every aspect, every level of our health care system IS criminal?! Things that make you go hmmm…)
a person guilty or convicted of a crime. (We have already established crime is relative. Let’s not forget that JESUS was a criminal to the Romans—and oh, what about Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr., Stephen Biko, Nelson Mandela, and Aung San Suu Kyi?! THEY were all “tried” as “criminals” and even went to prison—Stephen Biko never even made it out of prison!)
And as far as I know, most people associate the Mafia with “organized crime”, basically, employed criminals, no? And therefore, they must be BAD because they are criminals, right? Well, in MY experience, there are ANGELS in the MAFIA!
The Zulu Mafia (a.k.a., Operation: Who Let the Dogs Out?)
When our dogs (Boo! And Paco) were DOG-napped in rural Kwa Zulu Natal (*because I did not have any children they could kid-nap!), the ONLY people who would help me were the Zulu Mafia. At first, I went to the police.
“Ohhh, poor umlungu! Somebody take your little dogs? Boo hoo! Look around. We have car-jackings, robberies, rapes, murders, and corruptions to investigate! We have no time for looking for dogs.” --Hlabisa Department of Police (NOTE: The local police were correct. They did have A LOT of work and little resources—but it STILL infuriated me!)
EveryONE I approached from the nearest veterinarian (over 70 km away!) to local Game Park officials, neighbors, security guards, peers and colleagues, NO ONE seemed capable, much less concerned, in helping me safely locate my dogs alive OR dead. I was furious! One afternoon while distributing home-based care medicines and supplies, I overheard some of our caregivers (28 Zulu Grandmothers and 4 Grandfathers!) talking about a local high school teacher rumored to be part of the “Mafia”.
“The Mafia is in Hlabisa?! WHY in the world would the Mafia come to Hlabisa? We aren’t even on Google maps,” I was bewildered.
“Yes, the Zulu Mafia,” One of the elderly staff quipped.
“What do you call the Zulu Mafia?” I further enquired.
“The Zulu Mafia, of course.” She replied with exasperation.
“REALLY original, guys! I mean you name your entire tribe Zulu, then you SPEAK Zulu, half the population shares the surname Zulu, you live in Kwa ZULU Natal…really, you guys couldn’t come up with ANYTHING a little more original than ‘Zulu Mafia’?!” *They rolled their eyes in response, while I immediately set off for the high school.
In the past, I procured a lot of donated educational materials; school supplies for both teachers and students; started a co-ed volleyball league (*apparently, this was a historic event, the first time Zulu boys and girls EVER played organized sports TOGETHER); started “Friends of the Youth” peer youth education and outreach counselors; organized football (soccer) clinics; orchestrated a local women’s sewing group and a leatherworks co-op (local income generation projects) to make cheaper school uniforms and shoes for the students; and then some—basically, I had a lot of leverage with the school, so when I asked Sqoks (not his real name for OBVIOUS reasons and yes, it has a “click” in it) for some assistance getting my dogs back, he responded nonchalantly, “But of course.”
“You asked the Zulu Mafia to find the dogs?! Are you INSANE?!” Marcos did not approve one bit.
Two mornings later, Sqoks and three of his intimidating “colleagues” showed up at my doorstep, “We KNOW who has the dogs. It is one of the ambulance drivers.”
“What?!” my disbelief. “Who, where…why…HOW?!!!”
“We don’t have time, we are going NOW to get them,” Sqoks and his men started to leave when Marcos jumped out of the bedroom (where I assumed he was hiding), “I am going too!” (Marcos whispered to me on his way out, “So nothing violent happens!”) The Zulu Mafia gleefully barked, “Who let the dogs out?” all the way to their vehicle.
As told by Marcos:
Sqoks and his “crew” drove Marcos to one of our most rural “bush” clinics in Hlabisa district. Apparently the WIFE of the ambulance driver (who “stole” our dogs) worked in clinic administration. Marcos said as soon as the vehicle pulled up to the clinic and people recognized Sqoks and his crew, the long line of patients immediately dispersed, as well as most clinic staff. The wife, working in her office, was easy to identify because as soon as she recognized the Zulu Mafia and the foreign doctor (Marcos), she started sobbing and asking for forgiveness. The Mafia ordered her into the vehicle, “Take us to your home NOW!”
The dogs were found, tied up, in her backyard. While Marcos comforted and collected the dogs, the Zulu Mafia smoked cigarettes and gave menacing looks to the wife, the neighbors peeking out their hut windows and the ever-present livestock, “No ONE touch THIS doctor’s dogs.”
The Mexican Mafia
During the epic “Smuggling Marcos from Africa to America--via Central America-- and on a Shoe-string (and without rafts!) not-so-clandestino Smuggling Adventure”, Marcos and I got “stuck” in a MAYAN mountain-village in Guatemala (Xela, to be exact!) for almost 3 weeks, trying to figure out how to get Marcos (ILLEGALLY) into Mexico. By the time we left Guatemala, every single person in that village KNEW we were trying to get into Mexico AND were trying to help us. Finally, we were introduced to the Mexican Mafia.
Tea with the Mexican Mafia
KITCHEN in a typical MEXICAN HOUSE– DAY
MEXICAN MAFIA, MARCOS and KELLY sip tea while discussing how to get MARCOS past MEXICAN BORDER PATROL at the Tapachula border crossing. *Of course, I am not going to TELL you just how we did it! But it clearly worked!
LIVE your bliss,
The Goofy Guru
Saturday, February 22, 2014
Entering Le Louvre
EXT. FAÇADE OF LE LOUVRE (GLASS PYRAMID) – DAY
LE LOUVRE TOUR GUIDE/TEACHER drags/pulls 10 giddy SCHOOL CHILDREN hand-by-hand (primary school pupils, of varied sexes and races, in school uniforms) across the plaza in front of the facade of Le Louvre. EMILE, an 8 year old boy of African descent (with name tag: “Bonjour! Je m’appelle Emile.”), is running to catch up with the queue of SCHOOL CHILDREN.
Escalator at Le Louvre
INT. LE LOUVRE ESCALATOR - DAY
Shot of stressed-out LE LOUVRE TOUR GUIDE/TEACHER and visibly excited SCHOOL CHILDREN descending down the escalator into the main foyer of Le Louvre. EMILE is the last in queue and he is trying to hide the fact that he is unwrapping a piece of chewing gum and pops it quickly into his mouth as the group descends.
The Jesus Hall
INT. LE LOUVRE GALLERY HALLWAY - DAY
Shots of various art work depicting Jesus (note all artwork depicts Jesus as a Caucasian man with blue/green/brown eyes and light brown or sandy blonde hair) during various stages of his life, intermittent with shots of the SCHOOL CHILDREN's reactions, i.e., Virgin Mary and Baby Jesus /SCHOOL CHILDREN smiling, perhaps giggling at any nudity; gruesome depictions of the Cruxifiction/SCHOOL CHILDREN terrified. EMILE looks at portrait of the Cruxifiction through his fingers, much like one does when watching a scary movie. EMILE is visibly chewing his gum.
Shot of artwork of the Resurrection. EMILE pulls a wallet out of his pocket and opens it. Among other photos of family peeking out in his wallet, EMILE pulls out a worn photo of a black Jesus (bleeding heart--apparently some church benediction card perhaps his grandmother gave him) Close shot of "Black Jesus" and then EMILE looking at White Jesus on the wall. Shots of two more white Jesus portraits intermittent with EMILE looking quizzically at the Black Jesus photo in his hand. EMILE is still visibly chewing his gum.
LE LOUVRE TOUR GUIDE/TEACHER catches EMILE chewing gum and via angry sign language reprimands him. She points to a rubbish bin in the corner of the gallery. There is a 50-something, stern-looking African SECURITY GUARD posted near the rubbish bin; SECURITY GUARD's eyes are following EMILE. EMILE walks up to the rubbish bin and pretends to put the chewing gum in the trash (unaware that the SECURITY GUARD is watching him.) When LE LOUVRE TOUR GUIDE/TEACHER is no longer paying attention, he puts the chewing gum on the back of the Black Jesus photo.
Leaving the Jesus Hall
As LE LOUVRE TOUR GUIDE/TEACHER and SCHOOL CHILDREN move on to another portion of the gallery, EMILE hastily sticks the Black Jesus photo on the wall (with chewing gum on the back) right in the middle of two White Jesus portraits and runs to catch up with the other SCHOOL CHILDREN. Long shot of Black Jesus "gummed" to the wall between two acclaimed white Jesus portraits.
SECURITY GUARD walks past Black Jesus photo just as it falls off the wall. SECURITY GUARD picks it up, inspects it, looks around to see if anyone is watching, and puts it back up on the wall. SECURITY GUARD walks away nonchalantly. MUSEUM CROWD shows up, briefly look at the first White Jesus portrait and stop to look at Black Jesus Photo carefully.
Sunday, February 16, 2014
In order to stop our self-DEFECATING thoughts, like “I am not good enough/smart enough/pretty enough, etc.”, we need to be able to identify these thoughts when they surface and then, instantly REPLACE these negative statements with empowering positive, self-loving thoughts. Yes, basically, we are trying to re-wire our brains (*but don’t listen to me, do your OWN neuroscience homework!)
Therefore, the “I am…” exercise is about engineering your OWN personal positive affirmations cheat sheet. Powerful affirmations composed BY YOU, FOR YOU. Simply start this exercise by making a list of positive affirmations, preferably in your own words, starting with “I am…” Add statements you wish to be true as well, such as “I am good at math” to help create this reality in the future.
To get this most out of this exercise, make your own flash cards and read through your positive affirmations daily (*get creative and add healing music in the background!) Or strategically place positive affirmations around your house (“I am a LOVE-magnet” post-it on your laptop, etc.). And next time, you get into a funk, you can just pull this exercise out and REMIND yourself just how AWE-MAZING you really are (because we tend to forget this often!)
Just this morning, I found myself in a deep funk, so I wrote 8-typed pages of “I am…” statements, which I have shared below and you are welcome to apply to yourself as needed. *Actually, I have a theory that just reading through my “I am…”statements you are going to feel a little better. Please let me know if my little experiment works!
I am worth keeping.
I am lovable.
I am loved.
I am LOVE.
I am desirable to men.
I am wanted.
I am beautiful.
I am sexy.
I am attractive.
I am playful.
I am a joker, a smoker and a midnight toker.
I am joyful.
I am BRILLIANT!
I am intelligent.
I am wise.
I am loving.
I am worth it!
I am the perfect partner for someONE.
I am a good friend.
I am a good neighbor.
I am radically honest.
I am brave.
I am courageous.
I am fear-less.
I am funny as fuck!
I am charming.
I am magical.
I am a good luck charm for myself and others.
I am a LOVE-magnet.
I am a JOY-magnet.
I am happy.
I am full of passion.
I am eager to connect deeply with others.
I am Spirit.
I am divine.
I am LIGHT.
I am a beacon to others.
I am a leader.
I am a teacher.
I am a connector.
I am a facilitator.
I am grateful.
I am a peace-maker.
I am a peace-keeper.
I am AWARE.
I am AWAKE.
I am conscious.
I am considerate.
I am always filled with Gratitude.
I am compassionate.
I am merciful.
I am Unconditional LOVE.
I am surrounded by loving, generous, caring, happy, conscious, FUN community.
I am a gift to everyONE I meet.
I am a gift to this world.
I am adored by many but especially myself.
I am in LOVE with myself.
I am generous with my time, LOVE, touch, service, positive words, money, “things”, and attention.
I am a good listener.
I am a loving, accepting family member.
I am making MY dreams come true. Right now!
I am right where I need to be.
I am excited about the future.
I am PRESENT.
I am a lover of people, plants, animals, the elements, rocks and minerals, and ALL our creations.
I am a passionate, loyal lover.
I am a DANCER.
I am a musician.
I am an artist.
I am a writer.
I am a poet.
I am in LOVE with LIFE.
I am full of joy, love and laughter.
I am an inspiration to others.
I am fuckin’ FUN.
I am the Egg Man.
I am creative.
I am abundant.
I am respected.
I am admired.
I am wanted.
I am an athlete.
I am the creator of my reality.
I am in control of my thoughts and thus what I attract to my life.
I am appreciated everywhere I go.
I am pure LOVE energy.
I am a healer.
I am open to everything.
I am patient.
I am kind.
I am nurturing.
I am FREE.
I am open to guidance.
I am connected to Source.
I am a channel.
I am forgiving.
I am empathetic.
I am all powerful.
I am surrounded by people, animals, plants, spirits/ancestors, LIFE that supports and protects me.
I am wealthy in spirit and material.
I am a light in this world.
I am full of hope.
I am PEACE.
I am at peace with where and who I am, as well as others/
I am falling in love everyday with myself and others.
I am constantly learning in FUN, gentle ways.
I am forgiving, living and accepting myself.
I am accepting myself—just as is!
I am perfect just as I am.
I am in love with my partner.
I am sowing the seeds of LOVE everywhere I go.
I am seeing the mirror in everyONE I encounter.
I am seeing the LOVE in everything.
I am seeing god in everything/everyONE.
I am hearing the same message everywhere I look…the answer is LOVE.
I am free to change my mind at any time.
I am free to express my feelings openly without fear.
I am FREE of fear.
I am embracing LOVE.
I am choosing to be happy and joyful.
I am choosing to let go of old stories that no longer serve me.
I am loving my parents, my family unconditionally.
I am loving myself unconditionally.
I am making every place I visit more beautiful.
I am dancing.
I am praying/meditating in every action (or non-action.)
I am a singer.
I am good at math.
I am part of the divine “plan”.
I am a spirit in the material world.
I am free from all attachments.
I am free from all judgments.
I am free from all self-defecating thoughts.
I am in love with everyONE I meet.
I am an alchemist—I turn everything into gold—especially myself.
I am a catalyst—I bring positive change everywhere I travel.
I am a gypsy with a solid home-base and tribe.
I am positive energy.
I am healing energy.
I am LOVE energy.
I am a luck and LOVE generator.
I am happy in my solitude.
I am a visionary.
I am intuitive.
I am psychic.
I am multi-talented.
I am gifted.
I am everyONE’s cheerleader.
I am a team player.
I am reliable, dependable, respons-able, and full of integrity.
I am a limitless supply of LOVE and LIGHT to the world.
I am limitless.
I am worth loving.
I am a sexy, powerful goddess.
I am powerful.
I am trustworthy.
I am radically honest.
I am FREE to do what I want, create what I want any ole time.
I am in LOVE with my LIFE and everyONE and thing in it!
I am a story teller.
I am a playwright.
I am a film-maker.
I am Master of Words.
I am Master of my thoughts, actions and therefore, reality.
I am healing myself every day when I choose LOVING myself, and others.
I am the ONE I am seeking.
I am ready to meet my LOVER/partner.
I am ready to commit to growing/learning/sharing with a man in a romantic relationship.
I am ready for BIG LOVE.
I am ready to let go of everything and open to my rewards.
I am ready for gifts!
I am ready for words of affirmation and LOVE.
I am ready to be seen and heard clearly.
I am ready to lead as needed, and follow as needed.
I am ready to dance!
I am ready to play!
I am ready to sing (in public)!
I am ready to openly LOVE others with no expectations of return.
I am ready to further open my heart chakra.
I am ready to completely heal ALL my past wounds.
I am ready to re-lease all “old” stories about myself.
I am ready to LIVE completely in the present.
I am ready to easily forgive others (for they know not what they do!)
I am ready to bless the future and LOVE in the now.
I am ready to STAY!!!!!!
I am ready for my own home/office/sanctuary.
I am ready to reach a larger audience.
I am ready to allow LOVE from everyONE and thing.
I am ready to be vulnerable and to trust others (especially men.)
I am ready to TRUST the process.
I am ready to TRUST others.
I am ready to FULLY LOVE others.
I am able to say NO without any guilt.
I am valuable to everyONE I meet.
I am not affected by the words and actions of others.
I am an asset to any enterprise.
I am not responsible for anyONE’s happiness but my own.
I am cheerful.
I am a positive FORCE on this planet.
I am letting go of people, thoughts, and old stories that no longer serve me.
I am a magic-magnet.
I am eternal.
I am in LOVE with my body! My eyes, blonde hair, big boobs, long legs, flat-ish stomach…especially when all is sun-kissed!
I am a philanthropist.
I am a humanitarian.
I am a hippie.
I am a scientist.
I am worth A LOT of bloody money.
I am full of energy.
I am seeking clarity at all times.
I am letting go of pain, old hurts.
I am allowing abundance, love, joy, gifts, touch, words of affirmation, service, time, attention, and laughter at ALL times.
I am immune to the opinions and judgments of others.
I am a valuable friend.
I am the ideal partner for someone on this planet.
I am patient with myself (and others.)
I am a Master Creator/Manifestor.
I am a little bit of every person I have ever met.
I am full of brilliant ideas.
I am full of LOVE, JOY and laughter.
I am full of wisdom, patience and kindness.
I am a Zen master.
I am the Goofy Guru.
I am a badass.
I am a revolutionary.
I am a change-maker.
I am an advocate for the meek—from children to animals to entire eco-systems.
I am worth knowing.
I am a magnet for attractive, loving, conscious, fun, generous, healthy, economically-independent, gifted MEN.
I am worth a million in prizes! (Thanks Iggy!)
I am laughing.
I am self-healing.
I am an animal healer as well.
I am using all my skills, talents, knowledge and experience to bring BIG CHANGE (LOVE) and healing into this world every day.
I am an unlimited source of LOVE.
I am happy to be of service to ALL.
I am honored to be of service to ALL.
I am tireless.
I am divinely inspired.
I am changing the world, every second of the day.
I am spreading love, joy and laughter everywhere I go.
I am loving myself (and others) unconditionally.
I am caring for myself.
I am accepting myself.
I am listening and acting on my Inner Voice.
I am always connected to source.
I am never ALONE.
I am creating New Earth infrastructures around the planet.
I am sharing knowledge and wisdom every day.
I am freely sharing my gifts DAILY.
I am welcoming LOVE in ALL its forms.
I am in the flow.
I am in the vortex.
I am attracting everything I want.
I am sharing all my LOVE.
I am no longer withholding my love.
I am no longer dimming my light for others.
I am honest with myself and others.
I am able to say I love you but No thank you.
I am good at stating my boundaries.
I am at peace with myself and others.
I am deserving of LOVE in all its forms.
I am a spark.
I am full of positive intentions.
I am a dreamer.
I am a do-er.
I am a believer.
I am a shaman.
I am a positive force on this planet.
I am resilient.
I am the phoenix.
I am safe and protected at all times.
I am safe.
I am protected.
I am healthy.
I am the solution.
I am the prize.
I am a gift to myself and to this world.
I am immune to negativity.
I am feeling GREAT!
I am fantastic.
I am a pioneer.
I am all that I need.
I am supernatural.
I am attractive to men.
I am sexually stimulating.
I am a Tantrika.
I am a conduit for LOVE.
I am a source of pleasure, comfort and healing for myself, and others.
I am bold.
I am genius.
I am witty, clever and entertaining.
I am a star (literally!)
I am open to Abundance!
I am open to LOVE in all its forms.
I am manifesting my DREAMS.
I am clear.
I am all the gods and goddesses—with a side of wasabi.
I am YOU.
I am ONE with all.
I am Nothing.
I am Everything.
I am Infinity and beyond!
I am a clown.
I am a sinner and a saint.
I am a hero.
I am a miracle.
I am a miracle-maker.
I am grateful to be alive.
I am grateful for ALL the experiences and lessons.
I am mostly water.
I am full of happy healthy cells.
I am a source of power.
I am able to communicate with animals.
I am able to find humor in ALL situations.
I am able to laugh at myself OFTEN.
I am overflowing with brilliant ideas I share regularly, openly.
I am good at sports.
I am good at arts.
I am successful at everything I put my heart into.
I am valued.
I am important.
I am appreciated.
I am an excellent communicator.
I am a quick learner.
I am an eager student.
I am listening.
I am seeing the “signs” and messages more easily.
I am using my gifts to bring light, love and joy into the world.
I am the answer.
I am in awe of all the beauty around me.
I am in LOVE with nature.
I am made of stardust.
I am unique (just like everyONE else!)
I am a seed-planter.
I am a caregiver.
I am always going to be OK.
I am stunning.
I am awesome.
I am awe-mazing.
I am that I am.
The Goofy Guru