From the ‘Sucks to Be Me but So What?’ files…

I’ve met some truly very cool people since I started out blogging; connected with writers & artists who dig on the shit I am into. The best of these I’ve enshrined in my ‘Spun CookieRoll’ on the sidebar to your right.

A few of you guys hang around this crappy joint — I guess for odd reasons of your own — & leave smart comments & seem to enjoy my stuff. I have an awesome audience here. Thanks. Ya’ll make me happy.

One from my Spun CookieRoll who you haven’t met is Ishtar. Ishtar is a journalist in Iraq. Earlier this summer she kept a blog, iraqi screen, and provided first-rate street-level reportage on daily life there. Ishtar is a mother & a peaceful warrior who took the time & risk to give us the Deal in a way, I feel, that no one else has.

Her blog has been quiet since June. I’ve emailed Ishtar a couple times to make sure of her well being. Each time she has promptly & politely replied. Ishtar is still alive, far as I know, and — though she has made no recent entries — I emphatically recommend a visit to her site.

Ishtar’s writing amounts to a journalistic snapshot of life in Iraq when the shit hit the fan. Check it:

I have the chance to sit with an Iraqi singer who also plays on Lute and asked him how could he sing and play on these crazy days, the artist said “I live in Sader city, I can’t walk in the street carrying my Lute with me, I am hiding it here and there in fear some gunmen would see me and kill me, I have received many threats ordering me to give up singing because it is Haram or I would be killed but I love art it is in my blood, which is better to be a singer or a killer?”

Strange & sad but somehow it gives me Hope.


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