ROCK BOTTOM in the Age of Extreme Resource Extraction: Complete Script

Here it is – the full script, complete with corny jokes and everything.

Note that this is significantly different than the presentations we were giving while on tour.  Every day was a work in progress, as we were not only learning about the issues and constantly updating the show while we were travelling, but also radically reinterpreting the metaphorical imagery from Mesoamerica Resiste & The True Cost of Coal in a sort of trial-and-error fashion.  At the beginning, three of us chose sections that we mostly kept for the duration, and the presentation became a sort of slow-motion improv act where each of us were constantly adjusting our parts to include new info and to come more in harmony with what the others were saying.  This experiment effectively proved that these graphics are very flexible, and can be used to talk about many different issues in many different places.

We started with a tried-and-tested generic story arc (the “hero story,” which is the backbone for how I tell TCC), named a few concepts/metaphors that we wanted to be sure to include (“pyramid scheme,” “bottom-of-the-barrel extraction,” “addiction” and “rock bottom”), and then we pieced together a whole bunch of different scenes and characters from MR and TCC to play off (these also changed a lot as we developed the story).  It was very rough at first, but through persistence and a lot of hard work, by the end I think we came to a story-line that was powerful and memorable.  We started lots of good conversations and we received many positive comments – one person even said it was the best Beehive presentation they had ever seen!

If you want to get straight into it, it is divided into the following 10 chapters.  If you want to read a few comments on the content before proceeding, they are below.  If you want to download the slideshow version, go all the way down to the bottom.

1. introduction to the work of the beehive

2. what do we mean by “extreme resource extraction”?

3. coming from gratitude – stories of the land

4. a brief history – what is “colonialism”?

5. hidden histories – heroes, rebels, and usurpers

6. new dangers

7. rock bottom

8. intervention

9. recovery

10. closing: a new paradigm

I will make just a few comments:

– This version of the presentation is quite long.  I estimate that it would take over 2 hours to deliver this whole talk as-is.  I chose to make it extra-long because I wanted to bring back a few nice ideas that we had cut out for time, and to try to add in some inspiring new ideas I picked up just recently, and also to represent as many varied perspectives as possible.  If you use any of this material, feel free to edit out whatever you see fit, this version presents multiple options.

– For the intro, we mostly kept it as short and tight as possible while on tour.  Here I tried some new stuff.  I like experimenting with the way we tell stories about ourselves, a different focus creates a different feel.  I would love to hear feedback or other peoples ideas for good introductions.

– For the extreme extraction 101 section, things like real-life photos of extraction and helpful but simple infographics always seem hard to find.  If anyone has some good ones relevant to this presentation, please share!  I do have some, but not all are good.

– For the recovery section – it took a really long time to put all of this together, much more than I expected!  I kinda rushed through once I saw the light at the end of the tunnel, so some sections may be more refined than others.  That end bit seems to have gotten real long, maybe rambley… but its all good stuff, and a great opportunity to really show off the beautiful critters in the MR graphic.  I think that sequence makes a great stand-alone story.

– Also, technically there could be a whole other section after “recovery” – the big question to the audience potentially opens up lots of conversation, and with judicious editing, this script could be reduced to under 60 minutes, allowing plenty of time for group discussion there.  We also had success facilitating group discussion after the “new dangers” section.

– For the closing, there are essentially two different closings there.  The first one about snow, I was saying early in the tour when there was still a lot of snow on the ground most places we went.  Later, I gradually switched over to the other one about water.  Both have positive points and I think they sound pretty good when put together (though its a little much at the end of an already long talk).

– Generally, because some of this material came from well-refined presentation practice, while others were just scribbled notes or gleaned from the “corporate rights vs. community rights” hand-outs I brought home from some workshops, there are inconsistencies in the language.  I generally tend to try to speak as plainly as possible, and avoid big words, preferring to describe things by making shapes with my hands. But thats not necessarily the way I write.  So some stuff may still sound awkward – as a script its imperfect.  But I swear, those stupid jokes (marked by smileys) really do work – people almost always laugh.

– I also made a slideshow version with the entire script, slide by slide.  I wanted to make it as small as possible so it would be easy to download.  So I re-cropped everything at lower resolution (Saku taught me a good trick, they are just big enough to look good on most projectors).  The file (.odp) is down to 80mb which is pretty good I guess.  But also it was a good opportunity to experiment with different crops, changing focus and style slightly in some places.  Due to rushing at the end, some are not great.

You can download the slideshow HERE.

– I am really excited to share this with everyone!  Please do give me feedback.  If I get some really good stuff, I will edit and update this script accordingly.  Or you can just do it yourself.  I hope this continues to be a living document.

– Finally, I just want to give *HUGE* thanks to Willow and TK, and also to Nettle, Renee, Kaleigh, Lara and Saku for helping to develop this story!

thanks, tyler..


Whole Map


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