Monday, September 10, 2007

when life hands you lemons

ok. wow.

so today's geography lesson is on the 3rd smallest country within South America, Guyana. i'm still not really sure how to pronounce it so don't ask me later when you see me because i'll just mumble something i think is correct.

like, hello! i had no idea that the Jonestown Massacre took place there! there's ALOT of interesting facts about Guyana but they all got upstaged once i came across that morsel of information and spent the past two hours reading everything there is to know about it. i'm a walking encyclopedia of mass suicide facts right now.

but before i tell you about how fucked up jim jones and his 909 cyanide/koolaid-ingesting followers were, let me give you a brief rundown on Guyana:

-people speak English there which we already knew. duh. BUT only 476 people (as of 2002, less than 0.06% of the population) are white. most are East Indian or African.
-the country is considered to be much more "Caribbean" than "Latin American" in terms of culture.
-the word 'guyana' means "land of many waters'' so i'm sure you can figure out the general topography of the region
-80% of the country is covered with forests
-"one people, one nation, one destiny" is the country's motto, which isn't that exciting except that we were all discussing life mottos last night and i believe we'd all agree that that one is WAY MORE BORING than ours.

but back to jim jones:

that dude was messed up! ok so i can understand how one person can be dilusional and exist in our society with very little interrogation (walk along Market Street heading east on any given day and you'll know what i mean) but how can OVER 1,000 OTHER PEOPLE agree to move from california to guyana to live with such a headcase in the middle of the jungle? they spent just a little over a year there, slaving away and practicing "white nights" in which they'd be handed a glass filled with liquid and told it was their 'loyalty test'. jimmy boy would tell them they had 45 minutes before convulsions began and as long as everyone remained calm and true to them, he would not only let them stay on the compound but also tell them at the 40 minute mark that it was just a joke. until, of course, the evening that it wasn't a joke and they all died after 5 minutes of drinking the stuff.

i'm going to go read about waco, tx now because why stop with just one lunatic and ... i have 2.5 more hours before i can leave!!!


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