Hempin’ January 2022: Feelin’ Good, Even Better in Hemp - Vital Hemp, Inc.

Hempin’ January 2022: Feelin’ Good, Even Better in Hemp

Ron Alcalay | 07 January, 2022


          
            Hempin’ January 2022: Feelin’ Good, Even Better in Hemp | Vital Hemp, Inc.

Vital Ones,

This morning, as usual, I woke up with another song running through my head. This time, it was Nina Simone’s version of Feelin’ Good. Here are the lyrics:


Birds flying high, you know how I feel
Sun in the sky, you know how I feel
Breeze driftin' on by, you know how I feel
It's a new dawn
It's a new day
It's a new life for me, yeah
It's a new dawn
It's a new day
It's a new life for me, ooh
And I'm feeling good

Fish in the sea, you know how I feel
River running free, you know how I feel
Blossom on the tree, you know how I feel

It's a new dawn
It's a new day
It's a new life for me
And I'm feeling good

Dragonfly out in the sun, you know what I mean, don't you know?
Butterflies all havin' fun, you know what I mean
Sleep in peace when day is done, that's what I mean
And this old world is a new world
And a bold world, for me

Stars when you shine, you know how I feel
Scent of the pine, you know how I feel
Oh, freedom is mine
And I know how I feel

It's a new dawn
It's a new day
It's a new life for me

I'm feeling good!

As a lifelong nature-lover, word nerd, and owner of a hemp clothing company, the evocative nature imagery, juxtaposed with the sense of possibility moves me. It feels like a necessary and causal relationship. With fish in the sea, rivers running free, and the scent of the pine, how can you not feel good?  

As the pandemic has made clear to many, our real freedom is inextricably intertwined with our health and the health of the ecosystems that support all life. Those who denied (and continue to deny) the gravity and consequences of a deadly pandemic are generally the same ones who deny the human causes of global warming, driving life on Earth toward extinction in so little time, we won’t have time or resources to “inoculate” ourselves from the worst catastrophes--be they fires, floods, hurricanes, tsunamis, nuclear “accidents” or more (and even deadlier) viruses. 

So, in the midst of all this, how can I awaken, feelin’ good?
I go back to nature, hope, and frequently hemp.

What follows are several montages of images of moments I felt good in 2021. In every one of these images, I (or I and another) were dressed in hemp. I truly believe wearing hemp contributes to feelin' good for me, our customers and Mama Earth.

Canoeing

Canoeing is better in hemp.

  

Cairns

Making cairns is better in hemp.

 

Hemp fields

Felds are better in hemp.

I believe it is our nature to feel good, to recognize that 2+2=4 (even if a demagogue would tell you to believe otherwise), and to care for each other and our home. By home, I mean not just the apartment or house we inhabit, but the town, city, countryside, wilderness, island, continent, sea and Earth we share with all other living species.   

The challenge arises when we forget the tragedy of the commons, the economic situation in which individuals with open access to a resource “unhampered by shared social structures or formal rules that govern access and use, act independently according to their own self-interest and, contrary to the common good of all users, cause depletion of the resource through their uncoordinated action.”  (Wikipedia).  

An example I remember from high school: Back in London, they made a great park in the center of town for all to use. Many used it; many trashed it. No one cleaned up after themselves. The park became foul, and dangerous, a tragedy. Eventually, the people voted for a tax that would allow the city government to hire sanitation and security services for the park. The park flourished.  

In this, and in so many other instances of good government, the social contract allowed members of a society to cooperate for social benefits, sacrificing some individual freedom for state protection of the public good. Principles such as the social contract and protecting the commons from careless, greedy actors (who might, for example, cut down all the trees in the park for their own use, if it wasn’t against the law), facilitate a better world for all.  

ron

Deep thoughts is better in hemp.

 

Doggie time

Doggie-time is better in hemp.

Halloween

Halloween is better in hemp.

Around the world and especially now, here at home, the commons might also refer to the common right to vote, a right some are arrogating for themselves as a way of maintaining power. According to the Brennan Center for Justice:

Between January 1 and December 7, at least 19 states passed 34 laws restricting access to voting. More than 440 bills with provisions that restrict voting access have been introduced in 49 states in the 2021 legislative sessions.[...]And in a new trend this year, legislators introduced bills to allow partisan actors to interfere with election processes or even reject election results entirely.

When Republican state legislatures restrict voting, or appoint officials who are willing to negate actual election results to declare their party’s candidate the winner (whether true or false), we have entered a world where 2+2 does not equal four; it equals whatever consolidates power for the party--at the expense of the will (and benefit) of ordinary citizens, and at the expense of what remains of our democracy.

“The Fifteenth Amendment (Amendment XV) to the United States Constitution, ratified in 1870, prohibits the federal government and each state from denying or abridging a citizen's right to vote "on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude." (Wikipedia) Yet, current gerrymandering practices and restrictive laws do just that; they enable partisan actors to sabotage the common good of elections for their own ends.  

To counter these anti-democratic (small d), treasonous actors, who would rather subvert elections and support their Big Lies than admit defeat, we need to enact national laws that once again protect every citizen’s right to vote, and every citizen’s right to have that vote count, legislation such as the Freedom to Vote Act. This national legislation will protect our elections from voter suppression, partisan sabotage, gerrymandering, and dark money. For more information:https://www.brennancenter.org/our-work/research-reports/freedom-vote-act

Thank you for reading this far, and sharing some highlights of our year, a year made better because we were fortunate to experience it in hemp.

 

Roadtrips

 Roadtrips are better in hemp.

 

cuddles

Cuddles are better in hemp.

 

Being alive

Being alive is better in hemp.

I believe that every generation faces a global generational challenge. My grandfather’s generation faced and triumphed over a horrific fascist future envisioned by Hitler and the Nazis who supported him. My father’s generation faced cynical communists abroad, paranoid war-mongers at home, and the threat of nuclear annihilation in a Cold War world. 

These days, whether right-wing or left-, we all face the realities of a world changing rapidly due to climate catastrophes that are only increasing in frequency, duration and magnitude. I used to think cooling the globe was where we needed to focus. So I started a hemp company to be part of the solution, to build a better, more responsive ship, one that can avert the proverbial deadly iceberg we are so rapidly approaching.  

And yet, now, I see that we cannot build this new vessel or any other, including a solar-powered transportation system, when those who support Big Oil, including corrupt petrostates such as Russia, will subvert our elections, or worse seize control violently to achieve their self-interested goals. Protecting our right to choose our leaders is the first line of defense against those who would sell out our democracy for personal power and wealth.

Beverly Hills

Beverly Hills is better in hemp.

 

biking

Biking is better in hemp.

 

protest

Protests are better in hemp.

As ever, there is hope, and joy in the recognition of progress, even in the midst of struggle. Originally written for a provincial British stage musical that toured in 1964, Feelin’ Good celebrated the liberation from oppression. As David Cheal notes in his fine summary of the many artists who covered the song, it was Simone’s version that gave voice to the times.

Released during the ferment of civil rights protests [in 1965], Simone’s “Feeling Good” was a manifestation of that movement’s burning desire for freedom.”  (David Cheal, “Feelin’ Good - Nina Simone’s Anthem of Liberation,” — Financial Times

I think the song arose in my consciousness, a day after January 6th, because yesterday was so fraught with memories of a violent coup averted, the result of far-right leaders and followers, bent on destroying the institutions (such as the process of certifying elections) that safeguard our hard-won democracy--for which so many have fought and died.  

The Trump presidency achieved what he, the spineless and self-interested Republicans who support him, and the Russians and Q-Anon propagandists wanted: it divided our country…so much that only two Republican Senators showed up for work yesterday, a day commemorating the previously unthinkable, domestic terror attack of January 6th.  

Feelin’ Good and all the good memories of 2021 remind me that the simplest things in life, the ones we often take for granted, are the ones that provide the most joy. These are the ones we need to protect: the air, the creatures of the land and sea, the trees, the freedoms we hold dear, the responsibility to care for each other and for our home. 

With this, I leave you with some highlights of the year, a year made better because we were fortunate to experience it inhemp.  

I wish you a healthy, happy 2022. May it be a good one for you, made better in hemp. 

 

Fruit picking

Fruit picking is better in hemp.

 

alpine

Alpine lodges are better in hemp.

 

Family

Family is better in hemp.

Thanks for being vital,

Ron

Ron Alcalay
Founder/CEO/Hemperdasher
ron@vitalhemp.com
vitalhemp.com
~Let Us Hemp You Out!~