Thursday, July 22, 2004

Marianna, This American Life

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I'm collecting any fragments of Marianna I can find.

I have a recording of the answering machine message from her home; it's her voice.

I'm getting no reply from her husband, either to email or to phone messages. I guess he's in Sounthern Calif, with his daughters. I'll try there, next.

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

national native news

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National Native News...
appealing to radio listeners who are engaged in the world
around them and who seek out a broader range of viewpoints.

National Native News Headlines

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

The Umatilla Tribe will not take the Kennewick Man Case to a Higher Court

Native Parents Urged to Test Newborns for Sickle Cell Disease

The Intertribal Deaf Council Starts its 2004 Conference Tomorrow

...Understanding our Present by Honoring Our Past

On this day in 1979, Mohawk actor Jay Silverheels, best known as "Tonto," had a star placed on Hollywood's Walk of Fame.

Listen to today's newscast, find a National Native News (NNN)
station near you, see what our listeners have to say, meet the
NNN staff and keep up with NNN in the press. Visit NNN on-line at


Click here to read the press release

You can Purchase Music that you hear on public radio at
You are reading

Frieda just wrote me, asking if MiniDisc recorders float.

THIS goes in my radio blog!
Dear Frieda,

Actually, it was more of a Jesus-on-the-Sea-of-Gallilee thing. I know it
defies the laws of physics, but I could swear I snatched it out faster'n
it went in.

As I recall (and you must remember that I was in a state of shock seeing
it splash, and with a head wound from falling), the recorder listed
slightly to starboard. I suspect that's the fault of the mic and
headphones being plugged into the jacks: uneven ballast. It could have
been the battery, too, I suppose.

I'm glad we don't manufacture electronics from wood or fabrics (which
would, of course, be my aesthetic and environmental preference). Water
just beads up and blows off plastic and aluminum.

So, a few passes with my blow drier (which hasn't been used for any
other purpose in about five years), some tender swabbing of jacks with
Q-tips (with half their cotton heads yanked off in my fingernails) and a
languid nap on a sunny, breezy shelf in my yard, and everything works
except the reverse scroll button.

Before I'd finished my ministrations, though, I did a little test that
was quite frightening. The motor whirred like a kitten with a head cold.
The mic cut in and out. The LED was DEAD and the headphones squeeked.

Alll's well now. Although the station's Production Director is looking
at me like a scared rabbit. Or a kindergarten teacher. I'm afraid I've
set back feminist production by a few years.

I was wearing my reading glasses, coming back to the bathroom with the
script, to record. I THINK I tripped on a cat, as nothing else showed up
on the floor, when I went to see later.

Thank gawd I'd closed the toilet lid; I don't flush pee. I live in a
desert, you know.

All's forgiven, if not forgotten. I expect the Production Director will
look at me skeptically for several months now.

I was pretty scared. I was afraid I'd have to find money to replace the

Rachel sat under my patio umbrella, constructing my defense like a
serious lawyer. Grrl's got my back, I'll tell ya.

But, obviously, the piece came out ok. I stood in my tiny bathroom,
minidisc hanging in a basket from the towel wrack that doubled as a mic
stand, shook for a few seconds, and started reading my script. A cat
clawed at the corner of the door, the entire time, wanting to come in
for a drink of water!

But I'd covered the bowl with a small sheet of plywood.

At least you can't hear the cat scratchings on the audio.

And you think YOU had a hard day!

Monday, July 19, 2004

broadcasts of IDC story

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I haven't heard back from WINGS yet. We FTPed the story on Saturday.

National Native News (see link below) will broadcast it tomorrow, 11am, on KUNM. It'll air nationally, too. Check local times.

Now, to start on This American Life.

I'm a bit indimidated, sure. I mean, it's This American Life, for cryin' out loud! Who wouldn't be.

I got the chores and piddly stuff out of the way today, so I can concentrate.

I even spent the last of my Food Stamps, so I won't have to go out, looking for food! I have enough provisions to last the month, or more.

I plan to meditate in the mornings, after my daily 2 trips around the park at dawn. I want my head AND my heart clear, when I start writing. I want this script to be authentic and clean.

No bull crap.

I have only 3 social events planned this week. All are nurturing and loving, in harmony with my work.

I may attend technical rehearsals for "Pueblo Revolt" on Saturday, depending on my energy level and how much script I've written.

I'm being as gentle with myself as I can possibly manage, so I can speak tenderly of what really matters to me, in such a way that TAL will find my messages useful.

I LOVE RADIO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, July 16, 2004

email to Damara Paris, President, Intertribal Deaf Council

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To: Damara Paris
Subject: Story's done
Dear Damara,
I'm listening to my copy right now. I took a copy to to be broadcast sometime between noon and 2pm tomorrow. I suspect it'll air at 12 or so, but I'm not sure.
I'm FTPing it to so they can broadcast it before the conference.
This weekend, I'll cut it down from nearly six minutes to 1 1/2 minutes, for National Native News to broadcast, early in the week. I can't remember their URL, but it's linked to near the bottom.
The final long script is here: idc.html and it's different now; refresh it. You may copy the text to your website, if you wish. Just give a link back to if you would. A link back to wouldn't be bad, either! LOL
I have some feedback for you regarding speaking to media for audio. You have an excellent speaking voice. Out of that entire interview, I only had about four, tiny places where I couldn't understand you.
There is one concern I have about volume. In order to record you, I had to set the volume levels rather low. Every once in awhile, for only a word or two, you speak rather loudly. If I had the volume set to "normal" range, these "spikes" would distort the sound, causing static and hurting people's ears. It doesn't happen often, but I had to compensate, because I never knew when it would happen.
I realize your first priorities are to deaf and hard-of-hearing Native peoples. Accommodating nonNative, hearing people is probably not very high on your list.
But you are an EXCELLENT spokesperson to the larger community. I've gotten VERY enthusiastic responses to this story! Several news outlets want to run it. Several reporters and producers found it very interesting, even exciting. And two ordinary radio listeners heard it tonight and thought you were wonderful; one was a Native woman.  So, you have generated a great deal of interest in IDC.
I suggest you get a VU meter. It shows you how loud a sound is. If you do more interviews, and I suspect you will, you can see on the screen how high the sound waves get when you're speaking.
Damara, it's been a real pleasure for me to present this story. Stories like the IDC Conference are why I do radio: to get people out of their "ordinary" thinking and begin seeing that not everybody is like them. I can't tell you how positively people have received this story. And they know they "should" have known about deaf Native people's struggles. That's what "lifelong learning" radio is about. It's what I'm about.
It wouldn't have happened without you. You're a real treasure, and it was fun to work with you.
You should have seen people's faces, when I told them I interviewed a deaf woman for a radio news story! Blew their minds. I just smiled.
So, my dear, you are a radio star! LOL Tell them THAT at the Conference!
Thanks for your time, knowledge and heart,
Rogi Riverstone

You are reading href="">;.


Oh, I've seen you all, poking in to see what I'm up to today.

Momma's been very busy putting together a radio story. See href="">rriverstone radio blog.

Took all day. Will be broadcast on Women's Focus on href="">kunm; tomorrow.

Six minutes, almost.

I'll describe my adventures in independent radio production in a small
bathroom later. Too tired right now.

Frieda, at, asked me to FTP it, based on my script. Length is
just right for them.

If they accept the story, it's worth a hundred dollars.

Not bad, for 2 days' work.

Beats flippin' burgers or mattresses.

And, of course, National Native News will probably want a smaller
version. That's worth fifty.

It's been a hard day. My back's sore from leaning into the computer
monitor to see.

My eyes hurt.

But it's the most satisfying feeling, knowing I helped spread the word
about hearing-impaired Native Americans.

Imagine this: I'm getting paid to do what I love!

Can you beat that? How lucky am I? WHOA!

Not only that, but what I'm writing and producing is useful, helpful

Now, ain't that a total kick in the pantz?

I can't stop yawning. I need to sleep.

Thursday, July 15, 2004

You are reading  Here's my script, so far. I've been up since 4:15am and it's 10:15 pm, now.
I'm sure the script will change before I record and mix it, but...

to another volunteer

You are reading

Well, HEY A!

I thought R didn't get my email! MSNTV's been funky lately.

Well, if you rummage around my blogs, you'll see I'm in a "WHOA!" state of mind these days.

I can't believe this is MY life!

I won't go into gorey details. But that little confrontation you saw in the hall that day was a sample of the um situation in the newsroom.

I was banned from the newsroom. Nothing I produce for news will EVER be aired again. I cannot use newsroom equipment, etc.


So, I'm now the reporter for Women's Focus! Tah, dah! Full access to the station, equipment, etc. :)

I'm beginning to work with Radio Theater, too. I have two, solid script ideas, right off the bat.

Mostly, though, I'm limping along, TRYING to be an indy producer, without a friggin' MiniDisc recorder. It is, to say the least, a CHALLENGE!

I asked for your email addy to keep you in my book. I have NO idea what I'm up to, but YOU, my dear, are a treasure. And I keep all bright, shiny objects.

So, remember that I keep you in mind. You're very resourceful. You have tremendous people skills. I've learned a helluva lot from you in a VERY few, short interactions.

I can offer nothing in return at the present, but I hope to keep you around.

There will, of course, be future projects. I'll be contacting you about possible collaborations.

To tell you the truth, the BEST thing that's happened to me, since I began volunteering at KUNM, was my banishment from the newsroom. As a result, some quite substantial veterans have volunteered as my allies, advocates, advisors, friends. They've loaned me equipment. They tutor me. They turn me on to pitches and leads. They hang out at my house and eat all my food. They take my dog and I for walks. They get drunk with me (on ONE occasion, mind you!). They buy me food. They hug me, tease me, comfort me and cheer for me. They take me places and introduce me to people.

My email box is full of messages from people I've respected for as long as I've been listening to KUNM!

I'm totally blown away! My life is TOTALLY different, in less than a year.

I'm so grateful, I often find myself in tears.

So, hang in there. We'll hook up for a project one day.

Now, to learn grant writing.....

Thank you,

Rogi Riverstone


You are reading

Dear ...,

I've been working on the piece for Women's Focus, NNN and WINGS pretty hard. I have my regions; I'll write my wrap at the dentist's today & voice it this afternoon. Should have it done & in C's mail box tonight or tomorrow.

The subject for TAL I've chosen is, "Most Likely To Succeed." I want to talk about writing, about Marianna, about the distractions of poverty & fear.

This post: got me thinking how I do have something to say about "success," which ain't exactly conventional, y'know?

I don't know how soon you want this. I assume ASAP, as it usually isn't your "style" to "nag," but you're certainly being persistant! LOL

So, I'm getting C's piece done ASAP, so I'll have tomorrow & Saturday to concentrate on writing copy for TAL.

Sunday's going to be physically demanding. I won't be able to work much, I don't think. But, after that, I can concentrate on TAL.

Hope you've had a fine adventure,


Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Intertribal Deaf Conference

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Edit List File
Transcript: interview
Damara Paris

region one

"I'm the President of Intertribal Deaf Council. It's an organization, a nonprofit organization -- based in Salem, Oregon -- providing services to people who are deaf, deaf-blind, or hard-of-hearing. And who are also American Indian, Alaska Native,"

region 2
"or First Nations Indian."

region 3
"Nationally, for over-all deafness, we do not have enough interpreters, sign language interpreters, as it is. And, when you look for somebody who is of the same culture as we are, it's very difficult to find someone who's skilled in being able to translate and, at the same time has some knowledge, some background knowledge, of our culture. So, there is a desperate need for more interpreters, who are multicultural, to get into the field."

region 4

"A lot of people think that American Sign Language is a very easy language to learn, that it's broken English, when it's not. It's a language in its own. It has its own syntax, and historical context, within it."

region 5

"For example, tribal nations: it would be really great to see more recruitment and outreach for tribal nations. Because it's a very good job for people from our communities to get in the first place. Because it pays pretty good as a sign language interpreter. And also, it makes us feel more comfortable to be with someone who is from our own, cultural background."

region 6

"If you think about American Sign Language, you have the sign for "medicine," or "doctor." And you use the sign for "doctor," in that context. But, in our culture, that has a different meaning. It has more of a spirtual meaning. So you use a different sign. So that, sometimes [inaudible "pretty basic"?] things can become confusing, if you don't have an understanding of that cultural background."

region 7

"You have to realize we belong to two, different communities. We belong to the deaf community, which has its own historical context, language and mores. And, then, we belong to the tribal nations which also has, in itself, its own set of heritage, beliefs and traditions. What concerns me is that, what I'm seeing is, more and more, American Indians who are deaf or hard-of-hearing are becoming more involved in the deaf community and less involved in the Native communities. It's because there's not enough communication there to facilitate between them and tribal members."

region 8

"And our goal is to make sure that we provide a place, at least once, every two years, from which our members can access completely their traditions, inheritance, and, with all the interpreters that we can provide for them to get that information. And also, it's a place where hearing family members to learn how to better communicate with their deaf and hard-of-hearing family members."

region 9

"Technology isn't quite there, like it is in the mainstream society. For example, right now. What I'm using to communicate with you is called, "Video Relay Services." That means, I have a webcam. And I'm looking at an interpreter, who's interpretting over the line, to the computer, to me, while I'm communicating with you. We don't always find that among the Pueblos, or the other tribal reservations, where many people live who are deaf or hard-of-hearing. They don't have the same access to technology. They really do need that."

region 10

"Eventually, we could travel, and provide more training to the tribes. So, yes, advocacy is in the scope of what we intend to provide, in the future."

region 11

"So, I really look forward to it. So far, we have about sixty-five people who have signed up for our conference. And we know that there'll be more coming between now and July nineteenth. And what we're providing, basically, is workshops of a variety of natures. For example, we have beadwork. Someone's going to demonstrate how to make beadwork and dreamcatchers. We have several people who have done outreach projects, focused on American Indians who are deaf and hard-of-hearing, who will share with us the results of those projects. We have a very dynamic speaker, from the Skokomish Nation tribal nation in Washington. And he will be presenting on, "Hearing The Spirit:" basically, how you can keep in touch with The Spirit, without actually using the ears, and the different ways we can communicate with our world."

region 12

"One of the things that I look forward to seeing more of is a workshop on American Indian Sign Language. And that opens up a whole topic of very unique interest. Because, as you may know, American Indians have used Sign Language within their own tribes for many centuries, far longer than American Sign Language was formed. And what would be interesting is to see the difference, and the similarities, between American Indian Sign Language and American Sign Language."

region 13

"It's believed that American Sign Language was formed because a man came from France, a deaf man, in the eighteen hundreds, and brought a Sign Language from the French to America and combined that Sign Language along with what was already here in America. And, eventually, it formed American Sign Language. However, what history leaves out is there is an influence from American Indian Sign Language from the Indians who did trade with deaf consumers, or deaf residents, in the eighteen hundreds."

region 14

"It's too bad history leaves that out. But we're trying to rectify that. Because, of course, American Indian Sign Language influenced American Sign Language. And one of the workshops we'll be giving will be some of the signs in American Indian Sign Language which are also used within our deaf community."

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

Ursula K. LeGuin

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Voices of the Southwest: Ursula K. Le Guin�

Category: Lectures/Literary

Price: Free *

Dates and Times: Tuesday, July 13; 6:30 pm

Ursula K. Le Guin, winner of the National Book Award and widely honored for her fiction, presents CHANGING PLANES: STORIES with additional readings from her translation of SELECTED POEMS OF GABRIELA MISTRAL.

This lecture will include readings, audience questions, and a book signing, and will be broadcast live on KUNM. �

Venue Information Venue: Woodward Hall Rm. 101
Address: UNM Campus
City: Albuquerque
State: NM
Zip Code: 87131 Presenting Organization Name: Voices of the Southwest Telephone: 505-277-4854 Email Designation: not-for-profit

There will be live, streaming audio feed of this lecture. Go to KUNMfm for stream.

I'll be in the audience.

Intertribal Deaf Conference

You are reading

I'm working on a story for Women's Focus, National Native News and WINGS about this conference.

I interviewed the President of the organization. I have about fifteen minutes' worth of audio from her.

I'd also like to interview an ALS interpreter student, from the Navajo Nation, about her experiences, studies and interests.

Looks to be a good conference, too!

Monday, July 12, 2004

Edit's done

You are reading

I get paid by the client on Friday. He was very happy with my work! SO WAS I! I'm a real nit picker, especially with someone else's stuff.

A reporter came by today. She's working on a big piece, for print, and is considering a column, as well. She wants to hire me to transcribe her sound files. She wants me to share a "byline" for a monthly column she's pitching.

She sent me her "stuff," unfinished copy, today for editing and review. I wrote back and told her, this is a damn BOOK! The subject's urgently topical, and very marketable to the Amy Goodman/Charlie Rose crowd! MERCY, she's unearthed some heavy stuff! WOW!

I'm also committing more energy to Radio Theatre at KUNMfm. I volunteered to webster the web site, for one thing. For another, I'm committing to learning radio theatre script writing. I have several ideas for shows.

I've been asked to look over the upcoming episodes of This American Life, to write some copy for one...I can actually address about eight, and am interested in "shove a mic in your face and let you riff." Apparantly, I'm "a good storyteller."

Now, remember: a year ago, I was pushing a cart, through the alleys of Albuquerque, wearing clothes and eating food from the dumpsters!

I'm still wearing the clothes, of course!

Actually, despite all this professional recognition, I don't have enough money to pay next month's rent.

I'm terrified. No WAY I can sell/get paid for enough radio to make the rent by the 3rd of August. Sigh.

It's my bank; they've changed their predatory lending policies...again...and are forcing me not to borrow on the direct deposit of my next Disability check.

My income next month: three hundred. Rent: four twenty-five. Internet: twelve. Phone: twenty five.

So, you see my problem.

I need help.

But I'm ashamed to borrow from my new friends! I'm agonizing over it.

August is my birthday. I may just friggin' pass the hat. I don't know...

This American Life, National Public Radio, National Native News, Free Speech Radio Network, Women's International News Gathering, Public Radio Weekend: and I could STILL end up homeless, just in time for my birthday!


Monday, July 05, 2004

old broadcasts

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I've been digging in my old tapes.

Mercy! I've found all my old broadcasts on KAZUfm! AND KCRWfm AND KUSPfm!

Well, who knew?

I also found a concert in which I sang a song I wrote: the one and only time I ever did so. Afterward, the audience sang "Happy Birthday" to me, as the concert was 2 days before my birthday. That tape's broken. I'm going to BEG for production assistance, to repair it and to record it WELL onto a CD.

I'm listening to my very first ever broadcast on radio: a half hour on "My Sister's House."

I sound so YOUNG! LOL

old broadcasts

You are reading

I've been digging in my old tapes.

Mercy! I've found all my old broadcasts on KAZUfm! AND KCRWfm AND KUSPfm!

Well, who knew?

I also found a concert in which I sang a song I wrote: the one and only time I ever did so. Afterward, the audience sang "Happy Birthday" to me, as the concert was 2 days before my birthday. That tape's broken. I'm going to BEG for production assistance, to repair it and to record it WELL onto a CD.

I'm listening to my very first ever broadcast on radio: a half hour on "My Sister's House."

I sound so YOUNG! LOL


You are reading

State Fair Script: This URL is only temporary. As soon as the client doesn't need to see it anymore, I'll delete it from my server.

This piece was over 5:30 long. I edited it down to 4:45 or so.

With the changes in narration which I've suggested, assuming the client is willing or able to revoice them, the piece would be 4:30, as required.

Otherwise, I can't change anything else.

I got eye strain, from moving from computer to paper script to MSNTV screen all afternoon, working on it.

But, hey, it's kewl.

My client said not to sweat it, but once I get a job, I like to finish it and have it RIGHT! y'know?

ANYWAY, this piece, and a transcription of another show, are finished!

Now, to start working on a National Native News story....