Wednesday, 29 August: Gold Label – In the last few days, since they came back from holiday, our pattern cutters have been finishing perfectly their samples and patterns. Iris and Andreas have been helping them and also doing new work. Today was a major fitting lasting all day. I joined them and we still found ways to make crucial improvements. I am delighted. There are many new ideas initiated, especially by Andreas, and the collection is looking exciting. By now we have a good idea of the fabrics we will allocate to the designs (in toile form and also we have managed to test out some in the correct fabrics).
Thursday, 30 August: Pinning down the fabrics to complete the charts so that we can send the remaining prototypes and all information to Italy. Rosita is here so that she can follow these last stages, then when she goes back to Italy on Tuesday she will have everything she needs for an efficient operation making the sample collection (each design is made in more than one fabric choice). Rosita travels between here and Italy by train. She stays at our house as well as Iris.
Friday – Sunday, 2 September: Iris left early Saturday Morning and I was reading from 7:00 am to 12:00 noon. Apart from that, Andreas and I worked to finish the charts until Sunday night. Andreas is amazing; he has worked to prepare the shoe collection and already organized the tights and other accessories to coordinate the collection. I, meanwhile, did some graphics and the invitation for the Red Label collection – coming soon.
Monday, 3 September: Yesterday was cold and today was suddenly Indian Summer, so called because this late summer phenomenon happens in North America – Indian Country – and while I mention Native Americans let me say “Thank you, dear Pamela” for sending an email (please read it!) from her friend, Jon, about his specific work to provide clean water to the Americans of Pine Ridge, Leonard’s reservation. Jon has an NGO supplying practical hands-on solutions for clean water crises – he also works in Haiti. One of his solutions is a bucket and plastic pipe and chemicals costing $50 which supplies clean water to 100 people for a year. I was also delighted to receive a reply to my letter from Leonard Peltier which I can share with you here.
Back to our Indian Summer: I immediately asked myself, what date is it? It must be my son’s birthday, On the 3rd September, 49 years ago, my then husband Derek and our son Ben – one year old and already scampering around like a little rabbit – were on holiday in North Devon, walking over sand dunes to the sea, larks high in the sky in this glorious weather. Every year since, with one exception about five years ago, we have had this same glory: a refined heat in a big blue sky, held in suspense against the cold air that is waiting. It’s great to have the last of the summer sun turn up on cue even amongst the present chaotic weather patterns. This is my Ben’s weather. Happy Birthday, my love.
Now that the charts are sent, Rosita is waiting for me to check the knitwear samples which she had sent from Italy. We do this together and she notes the corrections. Andreas goes to Italy to work on “Man”.
Tuesday, 4 September: I had the day off. I was tired and I wasted two or three hours doing a “very difficult” Sudoku. (I don’t do it much anymore). It was, nevertheless, good for me; though it stimulates you mentally, it also relaxed me and I fell asleep. A sleep during the day is the best restorative.
I had already been carrying in my mind the idea of “Climate Revolution”. It is really important to give what is happening a name. Now that we have identified our cause as “Revolution”, we can combine our actions in the fight to win.
When I woke up, I sat down and immediately wrote out a plan of action for the Climate Revolution. Then I read.
Wednesday, 5 September: Main event – a photo of me by David Bailey. I chose my grand dress which is really seven metres of bronze silk paper-thin duchess satin – the weave on the other side is midnight blue. The dress has a cord attached at the back neck. I can wear it as a cloak or put a belt round the waist and pull the fabric through to make it into a dress. Under this I wore a tee short, “Get a Life”.
Our photo is for “Harper’s Bazaar” who want to give me an award for my help with “Cool Earth”.
I chose the dress because I always try to wear it when I am working for Climate Revolution.
What is it about David Bailey that makes him so attractive? You enter another dimension, pulled to the centre of his attraction, totally happy but on the alert for something to happen. He has the face of a happy devil; his eyes burn like diamonds in amber.
He loved the dress and marvelled at the fabric. His eye: “Don’t move! Can I?” – moving my elbow slightly – “Don’t stick your tits out! Relax your shoulders!” – steps forward to make my hair fall a bit better. Serious focus and delight. He does a little hop and his hand dances in the air.
David subscribed to a magazine “Bird”- he has a pair of rare parrots. In the 70’s David and another parrot fancier (rich) were discussing birds. “Let’s have lunch tomorrow” – with another parrot fancier. They went to Manilla! A different world! Or do some rich Russians still behave like this? David filmed in Afghanistan. “The waste! Miles of trucks and jeeps. Cheaper to leave them there than get them back home.” “The problem with C.C. is there’s too many of us.” “I agree with you, David. And I hear it all the time. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do something.” “No.”
Thursday, 6 September: 9.00 am – Coffee with Adrian Cheng at the Wolsey. This isour first meeting and after five minutes he was my new friend. We are going to do a lot together. He is young and already has done so much. He is lucky enough to be the son of a family business in China, vast and world-wide. The business began one generation ago with jewellery (now the distribution is twice Tiffany’s). It now includes many and various enterprises, including food. The whole company strives and has managed to be green. Adrian paints and is interested in contemporary “art”. They have an enormous network of contacts through social media and as we are beginning the Climate Revolution through social media, Adrian will be important. We hereby invite him to become a member of our cabinet of operations.
We got on like a house on fire, we agreed on everything (wait about the art), e.g. young researchers in Africa, working for the family company regarding integrity of food chains, are clearly against agribusiness. I am really excited to meet Adrian and he is delightful.
Then I go to a rehearsal for the Paralympics. Artist, Joe Rush, asked me to be Boudicca on a great flaming chariot. Joe Rush and the Mutoid Waste Company make sculptures out of recycled scrap metal. They’ve been working for months making several giant and less giant ones which will drive round the stadium for the closing ceremony of the Paralympics. So now is my first look at these metal floats which are in the form of creatures (my favourite is the horse) and a galleon and (my) chariot. Mind boggling, epic, so ingeniously worked: romantic, a dream for the imagination!
I escaped quickly to go home so as to avoid questions as to what I was going to wear. My idea is to unfurl the banner for CLIMATE REVOLUTION. I shall take my dress, which is really 7 metres of fabric and wind myself up in it. Nobody will know that we have applied giant letters which spell “Climate Revolution” inside. There are two pockets sewn upside down at the top edge of the banner/dress and my warriors, Andreas and son, Joe, will stick their spears into the pockets and lift high the dress as I undo it.
Friday – Sunday, 7- 9 September: To cut a long story short, I was incredibly worried up until the final day, Sunday. My time was taken working it out, getting it right. What if we missed the moment to time it for the TV cameras? (All they knew was that I would lift the veil off my helmet to reveal my face.) I had to deceive the show producers. I was so helped by Joe, Andreas and Letmiya (Joe Rush’s girlfriend – she once made a film profile on me). Joe Rush is another attractive man, always working his arse off, always cool, always smiling.
Once I was on the chariot I was excited. We did it!
The Paralympics was the perfect opportunity to unfurl the CLIMATE REVOLUTION banner.
In 2008, the New Economics Foundation announced their “100 Months” campaign – the amount of time they estimate we have to stabilize the level of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere before the risk of uncontrollable planet warming becomes unacceptably high.
We are now halfway through, with 50 more months to go – therefore we have to do it by the next Olympics. We have a choice: Hell or a Future better than the human race has ever known.
The Revolution is already begun.
The fact of man-made climate change is accepted by most people. Through every walk of life people are changing their values and their behaviour. This continues to build the Revolution. The fight is no longer between the classes or between rich and poor but between the idiots and the eco-conscious.
MOST IMPORTANT MESSAGE
Climate Revolution is the only means towards a sound economy. When the general public massively switches on to this fact we will win.
RESIST ECONOMIC PROPAGANDA
Our economic system, run for profit and waste and based primarily on the extractive industries, is the cause of climate change. We have wasted the earth’s treasure and we can no longer exploit it cheaply. This shows up as a symptom; the symptom which is the proof of climate change is the economic crisis. Climate crisis and economic crisis are like serpents who eat each other’s tail.
Economists treat economics as if it is a pure science divorced from the facts of life. The result of this false accountancy is a wilful confusion under cover of which industry wreaks its havoc scot-free and ignores the human and environmental cost. The old, blind, mechanistic and life threatening view of economists prevents a true analysis. If they included climate change in their analysis we could work towards a better future.
If we want a sound economy we have to have a sound environment- stop climate change.
What’s good for the planet is good for the economy / What’s bad for the planet is bad for the economy.
PLAN OF OPERATION
1) Assert the connection between the climate crisis and the economic crisis.
2) Implement two measures without which we cannot stop climate change:
i. Establish the Arctic Commons (http://www.greenpeace.org.uk/)
ii. Save the Rainforest (http://www.coolearth.org)
Both of these are possible right now.
3) Tackle the need for clean energy. The quickest safe option is nuclear. The problem is that the public is against it. We think this is because of false propaganda from the press who have massively misrepresented the facts to satisfy the thrill of a good scare story. (You can still be part of the Revolution even if you don’t agree – it’s just that time is running out and we need to decide.)
4) Curb the Corporations, especially the extractive industries and agribusiness. (We notice a recently coined word, “Corporocracy”.)
5) We shall now form a cabinet of operations – to include NGO’s, businesses and celebrities with access to the social media.
HOW TO JOIN THE REVOLUTION
1) Money is a means to an end, not an end in itself. “I never waste money I spend it”- Oscar Wilde. Maybe you’ll give a donation to an NGO or charity. You can give your support in other ways; just by following one you will learn a lot, this is support.
2) Quality v Quantity
3) Buy less, choose well, make it last (we don’t want the “latest thing” just for the sake of it.)
4) Prepare and cook your own food.
5) Cut out plastic when possible, for instance making a plastic bottle consumes 50 times the amount of water than it contains.
6) Inform yourselves.
7) Consider the responsibility of not having or having children. Chances of survival will be clearer by the next Olympics.
8) Take an active part in the Revolution as it starts to build.
9) Engage in art and culture (Get off the consumer treadmill; discriminate, don’t suck up.)
10) Your own idea.