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Indybay FeatureRelated Categories: East Bay | San Francisco | Arts + Action | Global Justice and Anti-Capitalism | Health, Housing, and Public Services | Indymedia | LGBTI / Queer | Womyn
Indybay Co-Founder Kaye "Nana" Griffin Passes On
The Indybay Collective has learned that Kaye "Nana" Griffin, an Indybay co-founder, passed on last week.
Nana was involved in the Bay Area activism scene for decades, including queer liberation, housing and many other local struggles. Nana also carried one of the first Indybay press badges.
Unfortunately, we do not have much information about Nana. If you would like to share a memory of Nana, including their activism, please add a comment below.
Kaye got around to many Bay Area subcultures. Here's one of her appearances in the digital rights subculture. This full page ad appeared in 2003 in Rolling Stone magazine, featuring Kaye in the middle of the lineup.
Her memorial service is on October 21 in the afternoon at the Center for Sex and Culture (http://sexandculture.org). If you knew her, please come! And post here about how you knew her. She was involved in so many things that I suspect that none of us knew the full extent of her activities and activism.
Old photos from Defcon.
She was quite an interesting person.
Kaye spent many hours volunteering with San Francisco Food Not Bombs and reported on the arrests and court cases posting on Indybay. She participated in nearly all the huge protests with her pet rat on her shoulder and I remember her insightful comments about a wide range of issues. Her vision of what is wrong with the political and economic system and ideas of where to take action to move our world forwards was spot on. So sad to see an important activist and thinker move on.
Could someone please post the time of the memorial?
Some of us met Kaye in the fight against pesticides. While most were focused on pesticides in agriculture, on school grounds, and in various government programs, Kaye was especially concerned about their use in low-income housing. The last couple of times I talked with her, she was very ill from pesticides that were applied in the building where she lived.
She and many of us involved in that struggle were poisoned, and sensitized to many other chemicals, including fragrance products.
Please honor Kaye by coming to the memorial without fragrance (including scented laundry, shampoos, deodorants, and botanical oils), and don't burn candles or herbs there, so that members of the network of chemically injured comrades which she was part of can attend as well without getting sick.
To find out how to be fragrance-free, please see https://eastbaymeditation.org/resources/fragrance-free-at-ebmc/
This is sad news indeed as I liked Nana. As the article mentions, one would likely encounter her almost anywhere where truly interesting things were happening.
I saw her last some years ago. We both used Linux on similar netbooks. I admired her ability and knowledge.
I would also regularly encounter her at various protests and also listening to speakers, like Ralph Nader or Cindy Sheehan, at various events. I thought she was very savvy, not over-demonstrative, but loyal to her friends and quietly confident in her beliefs.
I also admired her for her purple hair which actually startled me at first. For others she might be thought of as eccentric . I didn't think so. While some hide a lack of character with flamboyance, I thought she might be trying hard to fit in better with others who may not have shared her superior intellect. She was a real genius. She was wearing her hair purple long before it became fashionable.
I heard from another friend of Kaye's that her memorial is supposed to start at 2pm, Saturday, October 21, 2017, Center for Sex and Culture, 1349 Mission St. (between 9th and 10th), San Francisco.
Held at the Center for Sex and Education in the Mission, maybe around 80 people attended. And we all kept saying Kaye brought us all together! Or rather, Kaye and Nana brought us together, because half the room knew her as Kaye, the social justice activist, and the other half knew her as Nana, the computer whiz! And she seldom shared both worlds with others!
Carol from the Center gave a welcome. Kaye used to hang out there alot. Then her brother Mark spoke, then two friends, Peter and Chuck, spoke. Then Francisco sang and played a social justice song. Then at least half the room got up to share memories for the next couple hours. And everyone had different things to say about her, basically because she did so much with so many! I think she lived in the present, fully engaged wherever she was and with whom she was involved with.
Her involvement included advocacy at meetings, journalism, sharing info with everyone about what was going on all over town, community gathering, radio broadcasting, poetry writing, drawing, graphics, painting, etc. Then there was her computer side, including making computer hardware, computer hacking, and more.
Her background education included cartography, civil engineering drafting, graphics, animation, filmmaking, linguistics, and more.
Because of the extraordinary diverse life she lived and how many people she inspired, we are looking to set up a website about her where people can post their memories of her and inspire one another.
There were also pictures of her, drawings and paintings she made, poems she wrote, statements she made about her background, etc. And a good food repast.
Kaye had a lot of admirable qualities. One of them was her ability to live in the present moment. She listened attentively to people and she was quietly supportive. She was also acutely aware of social issues and spoke up firmly and gently about something or someone being overlooked, etc, which made her very good at meetings as well as able to do some fine journalism. Her ability to live in the moment tied over to an ability to be instantly with children. I watched one year as she played in the St Stupid's Day parade with another man - they both had silly articles like a rubber chicken and a toy shark, etc, and a child noticed, so Kaye started playing with the child. I think it's good to be like this in the world - attentive, supportive, and childlike at heart.
And that's just for starters, since Kaye had a vast background. I read her resume - cartographer, civil engineer drafting, management of such in several companies, graphics, animation, videomaking, filmmaking, degree in linguistics/math studies/arts - she was very visual and made delightful drawings including of all her pet rats, many of which sat on her shoulder nibbling at her purple hair! For a lot of people you would think this was pretentious behavior, but not her - she really liked having rats as pets and I'm sure she was happy to share them out in the world. Some got little graphic announcements of their birth, arrival of offspring, and death!
I think others will probably come along to share about her as Nana, the computer genius. She was one of the first to build circuit boards, evidently. Someone at the memorial said they're going to take her circuit boards to a computer history museum.