Anna Maria Locke

brain hurts.

It's Friday again.
The rain is back.
I have a headache.
Today was a crrrazy non-stop day.
I didn't even have time to make coffee this morning,
which is definitely the root cause of the headache.
I made about 23498734 cookies last night for the Geography Dept. coffee hour reception today, which was good because a man from The Nature Conservancy was the speaker; and I have pipe dreams of perhaps working for TNC someday. Maybe. Haven't really thought about the implications, just say it alot. (like I used to "say" I was going to be a pediatrician...)
And therefore have eaten way too many cookies in the past 24 hours.
I also learned a lot today; starting my weekly half semester mini-seminar "research perspectives in human geography"
woah! human geog is deep, dark, and complicated!!
Did you ever think about how we view poverty as an issue that can only be solved through economic means, but then map "poor" areas of cities based on where people live (or spend their income) instead of where they are actually earning their "poverty-level" incomes?
We often associate poor areas with race, because it seems like lots of black people live in areas we associate as being "low income." But where people work is where the low-income happens, and there is actually no correlation between place of work and race, household size, etc.
So, by trying to solve the issue of poverty by searching for "root causes" and making maps of poor neighborhoods is useless and only prolongs the problem.
More money or jobs will not help people who are only yearning for dignity, health, and a safe community.
Therefore, looking at the problem in terms of "welfare solutions" is pointless.

Even more disturbing are government programs that are trying to create jobs and economic development to bring people to "middle class" level. If middle class is defined as a household income of at least $40,000, HALF OF ALL U.S. HOUSEHOLDS are operating below middle class.
It would take $1,000,000,000,000 PER YEAR to bring that many people up to the defined "mid class level".

Perhaps we should try to make ways of getting the most quality out of income, instead of obsessing over the quantity.  Start community gardens, car-pool, design more comfortable and safe living environments.

These are "discourse" based ideas...or how we view relationships between words and the things they represent. (i.e. "car" can connote luxury, success, sex appeal, pollution etc). We see problems based on only one chosen relationship.

Earlier I said the root cause of my headache was coffee deprivation.
But if we try to find the root cause of climate change, or poverty, or world hunger,
we will only prolong the problem.
because root causes actually do not exist

I have learned about all this from a small Indian man named Lucky Yapa, who exclaims " young flends!"(friends) a lot as he lectures.