Sunday, April 25, 2010

Weekend Report: Happy Earth Day!

This weekend was everything that last weekend was not: relaxing, unplanned, meandering, and fabulous.
Yesterday I celebrated Earth Day to the max. I started with the Environmental Film Festival Bonus Screening Day. I couldn't get anyone to come with me, so this was a solo movie experience...which I don't mind, but it's a bummer when you can't discuss post-movie with anyone!

First I saw "Nora", a 25-minute short about Nora! the first certified organic restaurant in America, which happens to be just a few blocks from my house. The owner, and namesake, Nora Poullion is an Austrian emigre who has made it her mission to bring organics to the forefront of American culture since 1979. She was there to answer questions after the film. (Unfortunately, some people seem to be confused on the definition of "question." I swear, people get a mic in their hand and all of a sudden you can't shut them up! Jeez people - if you have so much to say, write a blog! Am I right???)

Random Sidenote: This is the second short independent film called "Nora" that I've seen in DC. The
other was about an African dancer and was that's kind of random, but worth sharing...maybe...
Anywho, I digress. The next film was Sweet Crude, which was all about the oil issues in the Niger Delta. A very good documentary - the kind of film I used to want to make. Did you know that it actually rains acid regularly in the Niger Delta? So regularly that the roofs on their houses corrode? And that they used to have white sand beaches, but now the river is lined with toxic sludge? Literally.

I mean, I've been in that river - much higher up, obviously, but still!

Both films were great, check their websites to see if they're screening any time near you.

And then after the films, I headed to the mall for the Ear
th Day Rally and Concert. It was very impressive. The friends I was meeting got a spot about 20 feet from the stage from which we saw Jimmy Cliff, John Legend, The Roots, and Joss Stone preform.

Between acts we were treated to some pretty kick-a people watching. Festival organizers estimated 150,000 attendees! I haven't seen so many hippies and hipsters in one location since I lived at home! It was very uncharacteristic for DC, and I liked it. Though a few too many people took off their shirts (this isn't Woodstock people!). And though the crowd was 99% young (at least so close to the stage), there were some token old hippies whose mission seemed to be to educated the young hippies about how it used to be. 

Some of the speeches were a bit overly-heavy...I mean I know things aren't looking so good for the planet right now, but I'm willing to bet that everyone who attends an Earth Day event belives in global warming. (I pray that I'm right on that one. I mean really.)

But everyone was very nice - how could they not be? Earth day...Jimmy Cliff...the Roots. All things happy.

If you want to listen to some of the artists music, check out these links:
Jimmy Cliff
John Legend
The Roots
Joss Stone