Devils Tango: How I Learned the Fukushima Step by Step


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Tuesday, July 17, by: Christina M. Martinez Section: Adult Book Reviews. July Reviewed by Christina M. Pineda is best known for her fiction The Love Queen of the Amazon, Face, Frieze , but this book is a departure from fiction. It is somewhat difficult to categorize in any particular genre. This book is a revelation, and a searing denunciation of the worldwide nuclear energy.

Devil's tango :how I learned the Fukushima step by step /Cecile Pineda. – National Library

Devil's Tango [25] was published on March 11, It is crammed with facts and figures about fallout from the Chernobyl and Fukushima nuclear accidents. Author Cecile Pineda poetically reflects on the first year following a nuclear disaster which erupted at the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant following a. Available from Wings Press, San Antonio. As much personal journal as investigative journalism, this account.

Devil's Tango is a one-woman whirlwind tour of the nuclear industry, seen through the lens of the industrial and planetary crisis unfolding at Fukushima Daiichi. As much personal journal as investigative journalism, this second edition traces the worsening developments at Fukushima Daiichi during the.

There is no place more marvelous than here. Starry night. All along the horizon, telescopes rotate, staring at the night sky: the Atacama Desert, where the skies are transparent like no other place on earth, free of the pollution of city lights, and of temperate zone moisture. The human race is looking for planets. Hungry for planets in our own image, in the image of Gaia, of Earth. Planets near enough yet far enough from their distant suns not to burn up, not to freeze. Planets which show signs of water in their atmospheres.

Planets that revolve around the maybe 50 billion stars in the local galaxy, in the neighborhood we call the Milky Way, and in the narrowest possible tranche of it, 1, planets have been sighted that correspond to such spacial parameters, and of those 1,, 86 stand out, 86 which answer within reasonable limits to those conditions: sufficiently distant from their suns but not too distant to entertain the possibility of water. Imagine 86 watery planets, each with its own orders of life: its own set of one-celled organisms, of invertebrates, of phyla inherited from a primordial past, of the first cone-bearing trees, of the first flower bearing plants, of mammals, of insects, of trees, and shrubs and flowers.

Imagine 86 planets with their own hereditary, evolutionary lines culminating or perhaps on the way to culminating in sentient, intelligent beings with appendages to hold tools, to compose music, to create dance, with tongues to bend around the syllables of languages structured entirely other than any Earthlings can begin imagining. Eighty-six planets with their own dynasties of composers, choreographers, writers, poets, singers of songs. Take all the sounds of all the languages of 86 planets, and all the sounds of all the music of 86 planets, meld them together, imagine the chorus.

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Now turn down the volume to a whisper: the whisper of the sounds made by the sentient beings of 86 planets. But this one, this Earth, this Gaia is the one you have. This one, and only this one.


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Its rocks, its fossils, palimpsests of times more ancient than time, its petroglyphs of a mankind more ancient than language, more ancient than writing. Its horsetails and ginkos, survivors of an unfairytale age of dragons, of cone bearers, of spore bearers, of molds, of microorganisms, of nematodes, of annelids, of the lowliest of beings without which none of our living, none of our songs, or our musics, or our dances, or our writings or our tongues could ever have been possible.

My neighbor is dying.

Once he was on the bus to Mississippi, off to join the Mississippi Summer. He marched with Martin Luther King, Jr. He alternates between moments of great lucidity and hours of night terrors where his scrambled brain allows him at last to collapse into a chair facing the wall, waiting for a reprieve he looks to the dawn to bring.

He knows he is dying. He has little time left. This is an emergency, he tells me, his still blue eyes wide with terror. Call the police.

I line up chairs outside along the hallway where I sit with him. They arrive at 2 am. They ask the usual questions: do you know where you are? The deep philosophic questions we depend on our finest to formulate. Judging from the name on her badge, one of these officers is a Latina. At once the tone changes.

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“Devil’s Tango”

The questions yield to appropriate negotiations. The cops promise my neighbor that, come morning, his daughter will return to comfort him. He summons me for a visit one last time. His eyes are shining. He sits enthroned in his chair in his bathrobe and underwear. This is an adventure! Will you edit what I write? Now, he says to me, now you, Ceil—he always calls me Ceil—you always have things to say about life on the planet; you need to write a book, The Book of Living and Dying. Will you do that? He waits, all expectation.

He smiles the smile of a mollified child. Ceil, he says, this is fascinating! He means death.

Devil's Tango

Dying is fascinating. Dying takes a long time, I tell him, laughing. He has the grace to laugh with me. We are children playing with the red ball of death.

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We toss it back and forth. I starts like this….

More and more he sleeps. Someone comes in to nurse his last hours, to turn him over in the sleep from which he will never awake. Once he marched alongside our great prophet, Martin Luther King, Jr. It ends like this. Thirteen days later the reactors at Fukushima will explode, scattering deadly fallout over the entire planet. From the day Chernobyl blew, from the time you fell to your knees in horror, you knew this next would come. You know what this means. You remember those hundreds of thousands of young Russian army recruits ordered to the disaster site by the USSR government, who died of radiation agony after building a sarcophagus large enough, and presumably strong enough, to entomb the massive reactor for a few hundred or possibly even thousands of years—but which began to show signs of failure in , a mere five years after it was built.

Around Kyshtym, the site of a Siberian nuclear storage tank explosion in , you know there is a zone where to this day the ground is said to move. You know the fall-out plume will soon blanket the northern hemisphere. You know it will contaminate the food chain, on land, and on the sea.

Devils Tango: How I Learned the Fukushima Step by Step Devils Tango: How I Learned the Fukushima Step by Step
Devils Tango: How I Learned the Fukushima Step by Step Devils Tango: How I Learned the Fukushima Step by Step
Devils Tango: How I Learned the Fukushima Step by Step Devils Tango: How I Learned the Fukushima Step by Step
Devils Tango: How I Learned the Fukushima Step by Step Devils Tango: How I Learned the Fukushima Step by Step
Devils Tango: How I Learned the Fukushima Step by Step Devils Tango: How I Learned the Fukushima Step by Step
Devils Tango: How I Learned the Fukushima Step by Step Devils Tango: How I Learned the Fukushima Step by Step
Devils Tango: How I Learned the Fukushima Step by Step Devils Tango: How I Learned the Fukushima Step by Step
Devils Tango: How I Learned the Fukushima Step by Step Devils Tango: How I Learned the Fukushima Step by Step

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