Meerkats are the most murderous
mammals of all. A recent study on
violence, which included over
1,000 mammals, found that 1 in 5
meerkats meet their end at the
hands of another meerkat.
Humans, however, didn’t
even make the top 30. SourceSource 2
Okay, but, when we send cremated remains into space do we send an explanation with them? Because I’m just picturing some aliens cracking open a satellite and being really fucking confused.
“Human guide! Our scans indicate that this probe contains a cylinder full of ash and human bone fragments. I assume this deconstruction of form is a way for your species to travel greater distances through the stars due to your limited capacity for large spaceships and distance travel. Quite similar to the Quaxilains from the Centuri district of the galaxy, though I did not know your species had reached such advancements yet. Please instruct us in how to revive your colleague so we may interrogate him as well.”
“No, dude, whoever that was is dead. Probably some astronaut or scientist who paid to have their cremated remains shot into space once they died.”
“You told us that your species buried your dead, why did you lie to us?”
“No, I said that MY family buried our relatives. Never said the whole species did it. Sometimes we burn them, then scatter their ashes in places they loved, plant them with a tree, use them to make diamonds, shoot them into space, whatever. Lotta options.”
“I had no idea your death rituals were so…extensive.”
The Minneapolis Youth Coordinating Board outreach team is a group of very special people. I am honored that I had the opportunity to spend time with them. Their work is extremely demanding, but they keep going because they are invested in making Minneapolis a better place for everybody.
If you believe in what they are doing (both downtown and in the schools), here are some ways you can support their efforts:
1. Funding for the team comes from the City of Minneapolis Government and the Minneapolis Downtown Improvement District. Messages expressing support for their continued work to Betsy Hodges, City council members, and the Minneapolis Downtown Council are very helpful.
2. Donations can be sent to the Minneapolis Youth Coordinating Board at 330 Second Avenue S, Minneapolis 55401. Donations from community members will be used to help buy food, water, and other items that help them connect with young people.
3. Seemingly small but important: People can say “Hi” to the team when they see them and let them know how much they appreciate their work. They wear black and yellow shirts with the You<th Are Here logo.
4. Finally, follow the example the team sets and be kind to people by saying “hello” to them and smiling. Just a friendly, welcoming gesture can let them know that they are seen and valued.
Thanks to the entire team for allowing me to document their brilliance.
Part of “5 to 10 on Hennepin,” a project of Hennepin Theatre Trust funded by a grant from Southwest Airlines’ Heart of the Community program. The project seeks to revitalize a five-block stretch of Hennepin Avenue downtown between 5th and 10th streets and, as part of a six-month pilot, pairs local artists with organizations that serve underserved communities.