this has officially made my day.

In September 2003 OCAP Member Gaetan Heroux was witness to Intelligarde
officers harassing a man at the corner of Dundas and Sherboune. Metro
police arrived at the corner, arrested and assaulted Gaetan, who was
simply observing the situation. Police did no investigating before
arresting Gaetan who was well known to them for his decades of OCAP
organizing in Toronto's east end.

Gaetan and the OCAP legal team filed suit against the Toronto Police for
false arrest and negligent investigation and assault. Today the cops
offered a cash settlement for their heavy handed tactics- not wanting to
go through with a lawsuit that was bound to expose their illegal actions.
Gaetan was arrested for being a long time and well-known OCAP organizer at
Dundas and Sherbourne and for asserting his right to defend his community
from police and security guard brutality. This money will be going into
the daily work of OCAP and the continuing defense of poor communities
against police brutality and racist police practices.

The lawsuit was scheduled to begin tomorrow, Wednesday Feb 22- the trial
will not be proceeding but we are asking people to join us at 10am 47
Sheppard St E. to watch the police write Gaetan a cheque.
I just might try to wake up bright and early to watch the 'cheque-writing ceremony.' Don't know if it covers their funding woes, but I'll bet it won't hurt.
As for me, friends, I've been writing my midterm essays and, while not doing that, trying to come up with basslines for a project that i'm in.
Can I indulge? I very rarely post stuff about my whole situation.
This musical project is very open-ended. I'm not (yet) participating in songwriting from scratch, just listening and trying to come up with something appropriate. I've frustrated myself to no end, playing along to a CD, second-guessing myself, tinkering, tinkering... in the first rehearsal i'm like 'is this okay?! does it fit?!' the dude is very accepting... lo and behold, in rehearsal the song is something completely different. i end up flying by the seat of my pants.
this is a challenge for me. i don't have my sea-legs yet, i want lots of criticism.. to get a grip on what works. i've never done this before. i want a song to start and end the same way it did yesterday. i'm not complaining, but it's like in those dreams where you're flying. exhilarating until you start second-guessing the whole physical logic behind it, then you start losing altitude. i'm out of my comfort zone, which is a positive development. When the gig kicks in, the songs all start going faster and louder, and i'm plucking on strings faster and harder than i ever did at home. last time we practiced for six hours and then gigged.. i had to keep away from the bass for two days after that just to give my hands a breather.
we've had an equal number of gigs and rehearsals. at least three songs each time have been worked out on stage... good thing they're pretty easy... just 'A7, E, C... chorus is A C E.' then i'm left intently watching the dude's hands prance over the fretboard to figure out the rhythm. whoa... I haven't heard any recordings from these gigs. At the time i can't hear much over my bass and the drummer, and b'sides my mind is occupied.
This is helluva fun, i gotta admit. i was pleased that i have never choked onstage. this was a lingering concern for me. The hour or so before i get phantom disabilities... like my lower back aches like i've done eight hours of factory work, or the long cold walk to the bar has frozen my fingers but good this time. By the end of our set i don't wanna get off. People borrow my bass and i get jealous.
The dude has an established fan base, real small but tight-knit. have I mentioned that i haven't what it all sounds like onstage? I have gotten some compliments, that's cool. it's a leap of faith. I have to trust their reactions, because there's not a whole lot of evidence that i can dissect by the end of the night. phew! I learn my parts from the record, i take it to rehearsal, have fun, take it to the bar, get nervous, and it all comes out in a rush. get my free drink, relax, get some compliments, wake up tomorrow and remember all the parts that went wrong. cycle continues.
i think too long about it... whoa! i live in toronto. there's practically a fifth of the population who are musicians around here. and here's the thing: we're not very tight, the guitarist is honestly no virtuoso, we are flying by the seat of ours pants, etc. etc. I've seen a lot of very good musicians playing (imo) mediocre songs in this town. I have to trust, finally, that other people are hearing the magick that i heard in this guy's songs when i popped in his CD for the first time. Don't get me wrong, this isn't a career move and i'm NOT placing myself on the established musical ladder in hogtown. we are playing solely for the handfuls of people who might get off on what we are doing. this isn't mainstream stuff. i joined the band b/c i really like the songs. now i'm too close to 'em. i have to trust that whatever it was is still there... plus bass.


At 11:07 a.m., Anonymous Anonymous said...

(here's more good news, eric!
-- krystal)

Police apologize for protestors' strip-search:

"More than four years ago, a 16-year-old anti-poverty activist took a vinegar-soaked handkerchief to a Toronto rally to protect his lungs against a possible police tear-gas attack.

Little did Adam Chaleff-Freudenthaler know that the pungent handkerchief would lead to his arrest, a strip-search and a civil lawsuit settled for $20,000.

Yesterday's apology, read out at the hearing by the prosecutor, Insp. Kimberley Greenwood, came for "the embarrassment and continued effects" of the search after the protest against the Mike Harris government."

read the whole article here: http://makeashorterlink.com/?P220520BC

At 12:41 a.m., Anonymous Mews said...

wait a minnit... you have a band - like one that plays gigs - and you haven't been whoring this fact for all to see via the electric mail? LEVERAGE THE INNOVATION SYNERGY OF THE INTARWEB FOR YOUR BLEEDING EDGE OPPORTUNITY DIVIDEND!

i want to be able to show up to shows and be the guy who's all like "yknow i jammed with the bass player twice" and be ignored by girls. awesome.

At 4:40 p.m., Blogger eric said...

honestly? it's easier for me to play for strangers. i've been waiting for us to get tighter onstage b4 getting all spammy like HEYO INCREA$E BY 7+ INCHES AMAZING!! COME TO SHOW FOR MANY HAPPY TIMES
tonite we are playing an open mic witha crunk band. somehow this makes me more nervous.
but, if folks are interested, we're prolly doing an open mic at uprising on saturday. suggested donation $5.. for uprising not us, obviously

At 10:36 p.m., Anonymous Anonymous said...

sorry i can't be there at Uprising to ignore you, but good luck if your band does take the stage!

(and anyone else who's gonna perform and/or partake in any heavy drinkin')

break a femer!


At 3:30 p.m., Anonymous tenants said...

If you check their website you will see the Ontario Coalition Against Poverty does much more than just protest.

I especially like their housing affiliate site Ontario Tenants Rights.


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