ACTION: Zimbabwe’s Kidnapped Baby Elephants – France

 ​Please sign and share everyone
ACTION: Follow the link to say NO to importing kidnapped baby elephants to France.
As most of you know, elephants calves and other young animals have been kidnapped from the wild in Zimbabwe and are slated to be exported to France, UAE and China in the near future. Given that elephants are facing extinction within a generation and a tipping point has been reached with regard to population growth, i.e. more elephants are being killed and are dying than are being born in Africa, the kidnapping and sale of baby elephants from Zimbabwe to these nations is an affront to goodwill, reason, science and morality. Please join us in saying “NO”.
Follow the link to say NO to importing kidnapped baby elephants to France.
- Thank you for your care and compassion -
Team for Global March for Elephants and Rhinos

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ACTION.YES! Pls comment on this article saying you SUPPORT the SANCTIONS AGAINST ZIMBABWE for kidnapping baby elephants from their families for “export”. ‪#‎Elephants‬ ‪#‎Zimbabwe‬ ‪#‎GMFER‬ ‪#‎Kidnapping‬

Follow the link, comment, then **S***H**A**R**E with your friends and have them comment as well. Mahalo nui!

“More than 30 Travel Agents have slapped on Zimbabwe travel sanctions through their businesses protesting over government’s kidnapping of baby elephants to go on sale in the European Union and China.

In a development that is set to hit hard on the tourism industry as thousands of tourists are blocked, bosses of at least 31 agents have reportedly instructed their employees to block Zimbabwe visits for their clients. This came following revelations that Zimbabwe is planning to sell about 60 elephants to foreign buyers.”…/


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Poem of the Week: If You Knew by Ellen Bass via Alison McGhee

If You Knew

- Ellen Bass
What if you knew you’d be the last
to touch someone?
If you were taking tickets, for example,
at the theater, tearing them,
giving back the ragged stubs,
you might take care to touch that palm,
brush your fingertips
along the life line’s crease.

When a man pulls his wheeled suitcase
too slowly through the airport, when
the car in front of me doesn’t signal,
when the clerk at the pharmacy
won’t say Thank you, I don’t remember
they’re going to die.

A friend told me she’d been with her aunt.
They’d just had lunch and the waiter,
a young gay man with plum black eyes,
joked as he served the coffee, kissed
her aunt’s powdered cheek when they left.
Then they walked a half a block and her aunt
dropped dead on the sidewalk.

How close does the dragon’s spume
have to come? How wide does the crack
in heaven have to split?
What would people look like
if we could see them as they are,
soaked in honey, stung and swollen,
reckless, pinned against time?

Thanks to Alison McGhee for curating these beautiful poems.
​For more information on Ellen Bass, please click here.

My Facebook page:!/pages/Alison-McGhee/119862491361265?ref=ts

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Poem of the Week: Glory by Suzanne Cleary via Alison McGhee

– Suzanne Cleary

My husband and his first wife once sang Handel’s Messiah
at Carnegie Hall, with 300 others who also had read
the ad for the sing-along, and this is why I know
the word glory is not sung by the chorus,
although that is what we hear.
In fact, the choir sings glaw-dee, glaw-dee
while it seems that glory unfurls there, like glory itself.
My husband sings for me. My husband tells me they practiced
for an hour, led by a short man with glasses,
a man who made them sing glory, twice, so they could hear it
fold back upon itself, swallow itself
in so many mouths, in the grand hall.
Then he taught them glaw-dee, a distortion that creates the right effect,
like Michelangelo distorting the arms of both God and Adam
so their fingertips can touch.
My husband and his first wife and 300 others performed
at 5 o’clock, the Saturday before Christmas,
for a small audience of their own heavy coats,
for a few ushers arrived early, leaning on lobby doors.
But mostly they sang for themselves,
for it is a joy to feel song made of the body’s hollows.
I do not know if their marriage, this day, was still good
or whether it seemed again good
as they sang. I prefer to think of the choral conductor,
who sang with them. He sang all the parts, for love
not glory, or what seemed to be
glory to those who wandered in
and stood at the back of the hall, and listened.


– For more information on Suzanne Cleary, please click here.

A big thanks to Alison McGhee for curating these beautiful poems.

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Minutiae #11 – The CBC – Why I love it and its relevance in today’s world

imagesThere are lots of people who love to hate the CBC starting with Stephen Harper and the Conservative party of Canada. For those of you who don’t know what the CBC is, it’s the Canadian Broadcasting Company. It has been our national broadcaster since 1936 and provides radio and television broadcasting to Canadians and to interested communities abroad.

It’s mandate is to tell, create and share Canadian stories from across this enormous country of ours, from the largest communities to its more remote hamlets. Over these many years the CBC has created a Canadian cultural community of practice by employing writers, thinkers, actors, producers, researchers – in other words, people who like to think, who like to explore ideas, who like to challenge the status quo, all the while telling and yes helping to create Canadian culture. Without the CBC many communities wouldn’t even appear on the media map because it wouldn’t make business sense. And increasingly, as we all know, the CBC has faced round after round of brutal budget cuts making it difficult to operate as is. And while I’m not saying the CBC management shouldn’t be held accountable for fiscal management, the very nature of why the CBC exists is very different from your average joe -blow radio station owned by corporate profit driven interests.

I am not a CBC expert, historian or even geek. I just like the CBC and I think it’s important to have it exist in a place that’s far above partisan hatred so it can be funded properly and continue to be host to important conversations not only about our country and its place in the world but about the world at large.  Rather than behaving as though the CBC (along with our environmental laws which Harper also gutted in his infamous omnibus bills) is a hindrance or completely irrelevant, why not consider it what it is – a cultural, intellectual and national platform that can continue to draw us together as Canadians.

Dragon’s Den and Q, now more famous for its infamous host Jian Gomeshi, are examples of excellence in broadcasting that have had successful uptake both inside and outside of Canada. While Canadians are known to be eternally self-effacing, it isn’t such a strange idea that we have the talent, ingenuity to provide relevant programming that reaches beyond our borders.

My own CBC tastes are simple. I love to listen to Rick Cluff on the way to work, on the way home it’s  Stephen Quinn, while cooking dinner I tune into  As It Happens, then I also listen or download the Current which brings the world and all of its hottest topics to me, Q offers cultural guests both large and small and great interviews, Writers and Company - long beautiful interviews with some of the world’s greatest writers, Ideas, explores complex and relevant ideas and on Saturday night I tune in to Vinyl Tap and then Cross Country Check up with Rex on Sunday’s. It goes on and on and I haven’t even touched on Radio 2. Is the CBC perfect? Good god, no. Their gross mismanagement of the Jian Gomeshi debacle was a joke from beginning to end and clearly their ‘star’ enjoyed immunity for bad behaviour for many years at the cost of others and it isn’t acceptable.

But the principle of a national broadcaster, independent from special interests including the current government is important to Canada for all of the reasons listed above. In a world of corporate media conglomerates and monopolies,we need an independent broadcaster that can tell our stories, share our ideas, and bring the world and its issues to us in a thoughtful and provocative way. And who knows, it’s not beyond impossible to think that what we produce here isn’t relevant to the world at large.

I am only familiar with a fraction of the CBC but would love to hear from others if they use other platforms, listen to other shows. I’m all ears!


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2014 – A Year in Highlights

I am definitely  one of those people…you know the kind who loves airplane food AND drafting New Year’s resolutions AND reviewing my year in highlights. I start thinking about highlights and goals in November, drafting lists, and generally yarning on about them before I start to badger Dave into undertaking same fun activity. While we have different styles of approaching it (mine is somewhat militaristic) we always enjoy an evening with a glass of wine going over our highlights of 2014 and sharing our goals for 2015.

So here are a few highlights and memorable moments:

1. Joining Dave in achieving his bucket list by visiting WW1 war memorials in Northern France and Belgium.

2. Meeting our good friends there, bicycling together, drinking wine and enjoying some good belly laughs.

3. Dave and I laughing our asses off in London looking at our broken feet in our hotel room after walking 18 km a day.

4. Buying an investment property with our good buddies.

5. Enjoying our World Cup Soccer and hiking series with the Westcoast Vanderkop’s and yoga with my sister.

6. Making a decision ‘to do’ something and actually doing it. And by this I mean helping elephants. It proved to me that one person can decide something, do something and meet a world of other doers who come together to make the world a better place.

7. Support from friends and family for the work I do with animals and elephants means the world to me so seeing them there on the day of, and having them pitch in (online) and help with petitions and sharing meant a lot and always will.

8. My sister Petra. I love her and I’m proud of her accomplishments in life and she is one of those people who has been self-less in her support of my cause.

9. Going home. At first I thought I would be traumatized by going back to Toronto because I hadn’t been back since my mom died. But I wasn’t. Going home really meant going home and seeing my sisters, brother and nieces and nephews.

10. My brother Johnny. Sometimes someone in your life touches your heart. He touches mine. Having the luxury of spending Christmas with his beautiful, warm family and my family makes me feel lucky and reminds me that life is short. A big part of home in Ontario is the family my mother helped to create. They are my home now too.

11. Walking with Dave in the mountains near our house watching our dog little Bean kick up her heels in happiness and I felt this beautiful, deep satisfaction with everything in my life. And I realized that I had grown to know my husband better and love him even more than I already do…… and I didn’t think that was actually possible but I guess it is.


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ACTION for Kidnapped Baby Elephants Destined for Chinese Zoos

10849804_941371222547696_6560763297292959950_nWill YOU let up to 100 baby elephants be kidnapped from their families in Zimbabwe and sent to Chinese zoos? Say NO! ACTIONS HERE to save the Zimbabwe baby elephants from China! #MarchAgainstExtinction #GMFER #SaveAfricanAnimals
1) Please SIGN, SHARE & TWEET these 3 petitions for the innocents kidnapped from their families:

Sign International Fund for Animal Welfare – IFAW’s letter to Zimbabwe here:

2) Join the Tweetstorm for these elephant babies and help #SaveAfricanAnimals:

3) Are you IN South Africa? Please show up! There’s 3 protests on December 19th outside Zimbabwe consulates for the kidnapped elephants, in Cape Town, Pretoria and Johannesburg!

Cape Town protest event page:

Pretoria protest event page:

Johannesburg protest event page:

Thank you!

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