Monday, February 3, 2014

A banner day!

This will  be the oddest mix of crafty and activisty blogging, I promise. Today was a banner day in many ways: I set out to sew two banners, for the local climate activist group I work with. We're part of a larger network, and today I could really feel it. People came together from different perspectives, as the proposed Keystone XL pipeline is hurtful to many. I met a woman from Texas who wanted to stand with the land owners who had their land taken by eminent domain, on behalf of a foreign for-profit enterprise. I spoke to a friend, a college professor, who told me that many of her students are activists for a multitude of causes that move them. I met people who are slowly becoming new friends through 350MA. So hopeful.

I spent the afternoon intermittently working on two banners: They measure 3 x 6 feet and are made of heavy canvas. I think it's painter's canvas, runs 72in wide at the local fabric store... so each banner cost me only $8 or so. I put in reinforced corners, to hold grommets in case the banner would need fastening to something later. One of them will be a more permanent one for our whole group to use at all our actions. A second banner just had ribbon handles to be held more easily, this is the one that I put the lettering on for tonight's vigil and also Saturday's action.

I painted the lettering on in acrylic paints I had lying around, see the last picture.

And then the best part of the day began: My oldest daughter and I headed out to the vigil to protest the Keystone XL pipeline - sadly we got stuck in really bad local traffic and missed the bulk of the vigil but behold the turn out for our small street corner:

Since we formed the 'late shift', it had gotten darker, colder and the crowd thinned a bit but I didn't mind so much: great conversation happens when you're holding two corners of the same banner, and my daughter impressed me with her air of conviction and courage.

She wasn't going to admit she was cold and make me go home. Nope. On the way there, we discussed the potential turnout. I said 'maybe 20'. She didn't think that was very much. But then we recited a whole list of individuals who made a difference, some pretty much on their own. She contributed quite a few names I didn't even know or think to mention. I hope she will remember tonight and feel we've made a tiny dent of a difference.


  1. What an amazing lesson to teach your daughter. My best friend's mom used to take us to rallies and lectures. I leaned so much about what it means to be an active member of a community. She'll never forget it.

    1. Thanks! We made the local newspaper yesterday, and when I showed her her name and photo, and even a quote by her, she was most excited. I hope she feels she has a voice!