Yep… The whole village is excited….

Ffolkes,

My mother told me, “Elwood,”–she always called me “Elwood”–“in this  world you must be oh so smart, or oh so pleasant.

Well, for years I was  smart.  I recommend pleasant.”
 
– James Stewart —

(as Elwood P. Dowd in Harvey,  screenplay by Mary Chase and Oscar Brodney)

—————————————————————————

“Kindness is more important than wisdom, and the recognition of this is the beginning of wisdom.”

~~ Theodore Isaac Rubin ~~

August 1 2014 045

    I think this picture is one of the better ones I’ve taken recently…. even if it did need a tiny bit of digital enhancement and correction. It still came out nicely, I think, and makes the perfect complement to the two opening pearls, adding beauty on a visual level to the beauty of the spiritual beauty implied in the two quotes…. These two quotes would also make a fine introduction to a rant, on human nature, and the flaws therein…. or, on the effect of those flaws on our society, but, I’m not in ranting mode yet, as I’m still not recovered from yesterday’s ordeal….

When inside a period of pain such as the one that beset me yesterday, Emily Dickinson’s lines on that subject often come to mind, to wit:

Pain has an element of blank;
It cannot recollect
When it began, or if there were
A day when it was not.

It has no future but itself,
Its infinite realms contain
Its past, enlightened to perceive
New periods of pain.

~~ Emily Dickinson ~~


Time ceases to have the same meaning for us when in that state, seemingly becoming a vicious, crafty enemy, spreading out endlessly before our weary eyes, slowing itself until one wants to scream at it, even knowing it refuses to hear. Everyone who experiences such bouts with what is normally merely a warning system develops their own approach to dealing with the pain, an approach that manages to reflect the personality of the one in pain…. Me, I tend to try to push through it, unless I’m drugging myself into oblivion. I don’t like to allow the pain to stop me from living, so I try to go do things, until it becomes so hard I am close to breaking down…. at which time, danger appears, and must be acknowledged

The danger lies in being near other people when I get to that point, of being close to letting go, allowing myself to strike out against reality in some way, any way, that will, at least for a moment, give me some relief from the constant, unrelenting assault from my own nervous system…. When I get near the end of my rope, I’m always afraid I’m going to dump my reaction on somebody close by, who has no reason to suspect they’re about to be bitten, or yelled at, or otherwise dumped on by my amped up emotional state….

Being a tough guy, though, means one must man up, and try to ignore the pain for as long as possible…. So, yesterday, after the morning’s waves of pain had eased off, I took off for a walk, & ended up going to the local commercial entertainment park, Discovery Kingdom, to try to get some photos of the wild animals…. Mission accomplished, with the bonus of talking myself into a membership pass, so I can go back whenever I have the urge….

The potential for photos is, of course, pretty unlimited at the park, what with tigers, penguins, elephants, and dolphins all available for photo ops… I got a few good shots, plotted out future photo safaris,  and wore myself out completely, to the tune of a 3 hour nap when I got home…. But, it did feel good to be able to say I hadn’t let my pain stop me from doing what I wanted to do…. Now, if I could only convince all my joints that’s a good thing, I’d be all set….

Ah, the hell with it…. I’m up late, due to the aforementioned fatigue factor, and need to get going on the rest of this…. Once again, we’ll have to resort to one of the more abrupt endings for these intros, such as they are, so we don’t get stuck here all day…. Belts all fastened? Okay, hold on, we’re going in…..

Shall we Pearl?…..

” You are a member of the British royal family. We are never tired, and we all love hospitals.” — Queen Mary (to her daughter, Queen Elizabeth II)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

At this point in time, I don’t have any idea what will be put here today…. I’m not going to rant, as I can barely think…. I already put together an old-school pearl, which you’ll find in the third section, where they are accustomed to find themselves…. I could put in some art, from my photo trip yesterday, but, the pix aren’t processed yet, so, that’s out…. Oh well, y’all know what this means…. something from the archives…. Don’t worry, I’ll try to make it a good one, okay? Given my state of mind today, that should be well within the realm of possibility…. let’s see now…

From 5/18/2012:

“And torture one poor word ten thousand ways.” — John Dryden (1631-1700) — Britannia Rediviva, Line 208

Wow! Have you ever seen a better description of this blog?     :-)      I’ve been torturing words now for over 12 years, at least in a bloggy sense; that’s about how long I’ve been doing these Pearls. I’ve learned over the years not to hear their screams, or read the petitions, or pay any attention to the ones who try to distract me with their flexibility of meaning; I just strap them into the rack and start hacking away. Sometimes, in the intro, I force them to assume the shape of a short fantasy; other times I will completely embarrass them by telling them they are haiku, or a poem, when they know for certain I am no poet. I can be pretty cruel to the words in my head…..

I figure it’s only fair, considering how they treat me much of the time. I don’t ask much of them, really…. just the morning group of five good pearls I can use to create these missives, and I’d leave them be. But much of the time, such as today, they insist on playing games, hiding, shifting about, presenting only the quotes they know I’ve already used, or massive amounts of Shakespeare, which they KNOW just annoys me…..

No, they’re not very nice to me, so I feel no compunction about torturing them to get them to do what I need them to do. If I didn’t, I’d never get anything written. If I didn’t write as much as I do, I’d build up all this incredibly strong angst and tension, and eventually it would have to come out…. and, at that point, it can be dangerous, especially if there is anyone else in the immediate vicinity of the blast zone….

So, you see, this blog is really a public service in disguise…. No thanks are necessary: since they are my words, I take responsibility for them, and consider it my duty to keep them from harming others (except, of course, when I want them to do so…..). I just didn’t want y’all to think I was hiding anything important…. I just call this my Literary Guantanamo Bay for Wayward Words, where we have the leeway, and the executive authority, to torture those nasty little terror-inducing buggers into submission….

gigoid has spoken…. So be it…..

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

This poem is one I wrote in 2012, soon after ending the thirty year hiatus I had going of NOT writing poetry…. I remember quite clearly, it was written soon after a bout with my PTSD, that happened to occur on a day when my physical pain was also quite active, so, it was, in simple terms, a bad day… But, if work of this nature comes out of it, I cannot entirely regret the experience, though I hope not to live through it too often…. It’s not what I’d call the most comfortable way to exist…. Any who, all that aside, I hope you enjoy the poem….

Pieces of broken spirit….

Deep within the inner abyss, tears lay in wait
Ever on the verge, tending to infuriate.
Real moments of sadness cracking our need
Swift, deadly waves of appalling terror freed.

Memory hurts badly when visiting now
Leaving me alone, forgetting even how
Killing the sunshine still pouring over all
Darkening all spirit, holding it in thrall.

Knowing no blame seems almost to heal
Yet healing is blunted, plainly not real.
Innocence is pointless compared with pain
On the soul it tattoos an indelible stain.

Hours become days, days turn to a year
Serving up only a compendium of fear.
Blind groping for light finds only dark
In caverns of terror, angry and stark.

Trails of endless sorrow fill up the nights
Confounded at last by unfathomable sights.
No hope can find its way to the fore
Never to sail safely, lost forever more.

~~ gigoid ~~

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Okay, ffolkes, here’s what we have…. Below are a bunch of pearls, all on one particular subject, with which I am sure you are familiar… we all are. The process of modern political phenomena is complicated, even more than the natural state of the beast, by the influence of those flaws in human nature, which tend to lend themselves to the obsessive pursuit of power and control over others…..

However, instead of ranting today, this is my sublimation of that urge, a group of political pearls, that hopefully, poke some holes in the faux dignity all of the pundits assume when they climb to the podium, wrapping themselves in the flag, issuing veiled proclamations of intended thievery and crimes against the populace they so despise….

“If the people are given the power to vote themselves bread and circuses, then they will.” — Cicero

(Actually, you will note, in the case of this nation, they did…..)

“The Law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich, as well as the poor,  to sleep under the bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread.” — Anatole France (1844-1924)

“Happiness is being famous for your financial ability to indulge in every kind of excess.” — Calvin & Hobbes

(The latest version of the American Dream….)

“Take away the right to say ‘fuck’ and you take away the right to say ‘fuck the government.'” — Lenny Bruce

“If A can prove, however conclusively, that he may, of right enslave B, why may not B snatch the same argument, and prove equally, that he may enslave A.  You say A is white and B is black.  It is color, then; the lighter, having the right to enslave the darker?  Take care.  By this rule, you are to be slave to the first man you meet with a fairer skin than your own. You do not mean color exactly?  You mean the whites are intellectually the superiors of the blacks and therefore have the right to enslave them?  Take care again.  By this rule, you are to be slave to the first man you meet with an intellect superior to your own. But, say you, it is a question of interest; and, if you can make it your interest, you have the right to enslave another.  Very well.  And if he can make it his interest, he has the right to enslave you.” — Abraham Lincoln, 1854.

“Believing ourselves to be possessors of absolute truth degrades us:  we regard every person whose way of thinking is different from ours as a monster and a threat and by so doing turn our own selves into monsters and threats to our fellows.” — Octavio Paz

“There’s no trick to being a humorist when you have the whole government  working for you.” — Will Rogers (1879-1935)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Well, ffolkes, there you have it; another fine mess from the messy mind of gigoid….. Remember, what I said above, about how the pain had gone? Well, it’s back, so, I’m going to go engage in the necessary activities to prepare myself to do battle with my own body…. In short, I’m going to go take a bunch of heavy drugs, and go back to sleep for a while, in the hope it will go away again…. This Pearl, choppy as it is, is done…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes, as long as I win the battle….

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest  Carole, Mark, and Theresa…
and everyone else, too…

When I works, I works hard.
When I sits, I sits loose.
When I thinks, I falls asleep.

Which is Why….


Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes,
I just sits.

gigoid the dubious

Featured Image -- 2780

One of our nuclear clothespins is missing….

Ffolkes,

Don’t tell the monitors, but I think we’re going to have to cut back on the number of virgins we are sacrificing to the gods so they’ll smile upon this blog…. It’s not for any other reason than the fact we are beginning to run into the old Roman firewood conundrum, from back in the days when wood, wind, and water were the only energy sources we had as humans….

Rome, that ancient city, in time grew so large that it became problematic for the Romans to find firewood in the hills above and around the city. After several centuries of population growth, trees became scarce near the city, and the men who worked to gather it, who were called ‘carbonara’, eventually had to make week-long, or longer, forays into the mountains, and further into the countryside, in order to find a source of wood sizable enough to suit their needs.

During these trips, the men would take with them the food and supplies they needed to live for the time they were gone…. As Italians, their foods ran to the simple, but savory, with pasta, bread, and wine as the staples…. all of which travels well, meaning they could take the ingredients with them to use while on the trip…. Dried pasta, dried vegetables (peas, mushrooms, etc.), onions, garlic, pancetta, bread, wine, and cream, for example, in the form of a cow that they herded along the road with them as they went to look for their wood….

Any chefs in the audience may have noted that ingredients listed are those needed to produce the classic Italian dish, Pasta Carbonara, named after the men who kept the fireplaces of ancient Rome supplied with wood during the winter…. I can testify as to its deliciousness, and, in fact, it is my favorite of all the Italian dishes I make, save perhaps Pasta Vongolé, which is made with fresh clams, garlic, white wine, and cream, if desired…. I do both dishes superbly, if I do say so myself….

How does this silly but interesting history relate to this pearl? Well, I’ll tell ya, if you’ll hang on a moment…. Remember what I said about cutting back on our virginal sacrifices? Well, we’re having the same issue finding virgins as the Romans had with their firewood…. It’s taking longer and longer to FIND one that is willing to be sacrificed; last week I had to go all the way to hills above Bakersfield, to harvest one from a junior high school up near Yosemite, which is a good four or five hour drive…. This meant I had to listen to the babble of a 13 year old virgin all the way home, unless I felt like being mean, & sedating him….

Now, I’ll bet y’all are wondering what we do with our virgins after we use them…. which is something you’ll just have to wonder about for a long time, because I have neither the time, the inclination, nor the legal requirement to tell you….. Suffice it to say they are NOT killed, but are placed into an environment where their virginity will not cause them any further harm, and allowed to live out their lives in ignorance of the service they perform for society…. It would only confuse them, and make them less valuable as a trained consumer for the corporate masters..

Okay, I’m done now…. That was quite a mouthful for a relatively poor joke…. If it was a scam, we’d have to call it a long-con, and wait up to a year for the punchline to hit home….. But, since this is a daily blog, we can just call it what it is, which is, of course, nonsense and drivel, fresh from my fevered brain, all for the purpose of filling up space in this section, solely designed to bring us to the point where I can say, without any fear of retribution or heckling beyond the norm….

Shall we Pearl?….

“There is nothing so awkward as courting a woman whilst she is making sausages.” — Laurence Sterne

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Today’s first section will be a Newsy Pearl, with articles ripped from the world’s news, and comments on those articles by gigoid the dubious at his angst-filled sarcastic best (hopefully…)…. Abondanza!….

First, a public service announcement…. A Swedish cyber-security group has found a flaw in the secure internet protocol that two-thirds of the servers on the Internet use, a flaw which provides a route for hackers to exploit, enabling them to obtain data and information from many different commercial and non-commercial sources on the web…. They also found that this flaw has been present, unknown to any but a few, for over two years, and MAY already have been exploited by hackers to steal millions upon millions of passwords and information about people…. It’s called Heartbleed, and, apparently, there is no way to tell how much data has already been compromised….

The authorities have decided to finally let the public know about this, and suggest that ALL users who use the internet change ALL their passwords, advising all those users to also take other steps to further protect and secure their data…. Nice of them to let us know, eh?…. Any who, pass it on, because we ALL need to pay attention to this one…. They’ve been to the barn, but left the door open…. you may want to close it, as best you can….

http://www.sfgate.com/business/technology/article/Online-security-flaw-exposes-millions-of-passwords-5386933.php

Now we’ll go on to the “Cuban Twitter” issue, that brilliantly programed distraction from Barry’s house, wherein the administration is working like mad to keep us from paying too close attention to what they are NOT doing to reform the NDAA and the NSA’s rabid, out-of-control spying…. While all the hullabaloo about this latest piece of stupidity plays itself out on the public stage, discussing the ins and outs of A PROGRAM THAT NOT ONLY FAILED BUT IS NO LONGER IN PLACE, the NSA quietly continues to mine the metadata on phones and computers all over the world, including right here in the USA…..

Yep, this issue, along with the loud, idiotic feud currently being played out between the Senate and the CIA, is the perfect subject to pull attention away from the NSA, as it gives the media, and their dupes, the general public, something on which to focus their ire, instead of having it focused solely on the Department of Cybersecurity, or whatever it’s called…. 

You know, that well-known organization that coordinates all of our spying with the NSA, (Homeland Security now includes the NSA, CIA, FBI, and whatever clandestine organizations in other departments, such as the branches of the military, all sharing information to keep their paranoia fresh), in their avowed search for terrorists, which includes their continuing joint abuse of the American people’s personal meta data….

Go ahead, read the following, and I’ll see you on the other side…. The initial comments you will see were written yesterday, prior to writing this, and may repeat certain portions, for effect….. sort of a reverse time warp, you see…..

“Hain’t we got all the fools in town on our side?  And hain’t that a big enough majority in any town?” — Mark Twain, Huckleberry Finn

http://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/Angry-exchange-on-Capitol-Hill-over-Cuban-Twitter-5387870.php

http://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/US-penned-political-satire-in-secret-Cuban-Twitter-5387849.php

Here’s the latest on the Cuban Twitter smoke screen… which is obscuring the other smoke screen, the Saga of DiFi and the CIA, both of which are distracting the public’s attention from what is actually happening NOW…. which is the same old shit/stuff these stories are blathering over, to wit: the out-of-control spying and lying that is going on in Washington, and all over the world, all of which gives me the distinct impression the BRC  seems to be  is waging a war of attrition against its own citizens.

The techniques of information manipulation, to misdirect the attention of the enemy to where it cannot see the actual events that transpire behind the scenes; the lies told bare-faced, claiming innocence with bloody hands…. Well, you get the picture…. The people who are in charge of our nation, ffolkes, are NOT very nice people, and are waging a war against YOU, ME, and everyone who doesn’t fall in line with their insane view of the world….

If you think I’m judging them harshly, well, you may be correct…. But, guess what? They are supposed to be MY public servants, not the other way around, and I’m not going to act as if they have any right to do any of what they are up to, not as long as that is true….. I don’t buy into the sense of entitlement they assume, and happen to believe that they are not only NOT the best of us, rising to the top like cream in milk, but, in fact, I see them as more like the scum that rises to the top of any polluted stream…. It fits them much better, in terms of both visual aspect, as well as their, shall we say, less than flowery odor….

This whole issue, making a big fuss over something that is over and done, and was a mistake to begin with, is just another way to distract the public, keeping them from thinking about the stuff that Edward Snowden revealed, all of which IS STILL GOING ON.

That is what they don’t want us to know, ffolkes, and they’ll do anything to keep us focused somewhere else, even if that means giving up some poor bureaucrats who were only doing what they were told, serving them up as scapegoats to hide their own actions, allowing the press and public to judge these poor fools, to let Congress crucify THEM for having stupidly done a poor job, at what was never anything but a stupid idea…. If it keeps us from looking at what the NSA is doing, all the better, in their view….

I said above that I see our own government perpetrating what I see as acts of war against the American people; I consider that to be gospel truth…. The Beloved Ruling Class, at least, the one I’VE been watching, has been using Sun Tzu’s Art of War to carry on a campaign of disinformation and manipulation of attitudes for many years now….. If you’ve ever read it, it is very clear how the government’s actions and statements are designed to use the principles outlined therein to confuse and misdirect the public’s minds….

With this latest administration, that campaign has reached new levels of intrusion into people’s lives, stealing from them not only their money, with outrageous tax structures and an economic system designed to steal even more of what they earn, but, has also made serious inroads into eliminating the Bill of Rights, taking away liberty after liberty, all in the name of “Homeland Security”, an oxymoron if I ever heard one… Now, they aren’t even waiting for us to spend the money, but are using our own computers and phones to increase their level of control over our fates….

Bah, humbug…. I’m pissed again, and it’s still early…. I’m going to stop now, and go on to the next section, where I hope the poem I’ll choose will have a calming effect on me…. I am not looking forward to carrying this around all day….. and, I’m sure y’all are as tired of hearing about all this, as I am about having to write about it…. Believe me, I wish there wasn’t so damn much wrong in today’s world…. Maybe if there was a bit less, I’d feel as if I could afford to turn my head toward a subject somewhat less critical, but much more amiable to my spirit….

SIGH…. Such is life, and we have to take it the way it comes…. In doing so, however, it would be wise to remember…..  despite any desires or wishes YOU may have, you are at war, ffolkes….. and the enemy lives very close at hand….

I’m gonna go Pearl now….

“Most essential qualification for a politician: The ability to foretell what will happen tomorrow, next month, and next year- and to explain afterward why it did not happen.” — Sir Winston Churchill

“Nothing is more admirable than the fortitude with which millionaires tolerate the disadvantages of their wealth.” — Nero Wolfe, Rex Stout (1866-1975)

“He whose pride oppresses the humble may, perhaps, be humbled, but will never be humble.” — Lavater

“Diplomats are just as essential to starting a war as soldiers are for finishing it … You take diplomacy out of war, and the thing would fall flat in a week.” — Will Rogers

“Firmness in politics is called obstinacy anywhere else.” — Smart Bee

“No man is good enough to govern another man without that other’s consent.” — Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865)

“If you want the present to be different from the past, study the past.” — Spinoza (1632-1677)

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Maybe it’s just me, but I think this poem is beautiful…. so much so it is one of the best ever written, in my somewhat less than humble opinion….

Part of its charm, for me, comes from the sheer symmetry of the rhyming pattern Wordsworth used… Four lines with alternating ending rhymes, followed by a couplet that also rhymed perfectly…. Twenty-four lines, four stanzas, and a visual aspect as sharp as a photograph, in describing the flowers, and in the way it appears on screen, or paper…. Just look at it…. centered, balanced, complete within itself….

Carrying the pattern through to the ending verse, for me, creates a visual aspect that matches the sheer beauty of the experience he is sharing with the reader…. It assumes an almost mathematically precise symmetry for me, displaying the sheer beauty of nature in all its undisciplined magnificence….. One of my all-time favorite poems, for sure…. and always guaranteed to soothe the spirit…. I defy ANYONE to say they don’t feel better after reading this…..

Daffodils

I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o’er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.

Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the milky way,
They stretched in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.

The waves beside them danced; but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:
A poet could not but be gay,
In such a jocund company:
I gazed–and gazed–but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought:

For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.

~~ William Wordsworth ~~


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Having completed the obligatory ranting for the day…. (hell, given what I wrote yesterday, I could consider myself done for the week….) I don’t feel compelled to do so any further, and in fact, plan to finish up as quickly as I can, & go take a nap….. As a retired dilettante,  I have that right, and I exercise it frequently, to keep it supple…. Moreover, I like it, so, there…..

I think, given the apparent direction my mood is taking, on the evidence of that last sentence, it intends to go somewhere none of us particularly want to go, so, I’m going to go pearling again, with no particular parameters to guide my hand, only a vague sense of nonsense…. whatever THAT might be….

Pluralitas non ponenda est sine necessitate.  (Multiplicity is not to be asserted when it is unnecessary.) — William of Occam [Occam's Razor]

“There is a time for thinking and a time for NOT thinking.  And THIS isn’t one of them.” — Paul the Samurai

“A gleekzorp without a tornpee is like a quop without a fertsneet (sort of).” — Smart Bee

“Real glory springs from the silent conquest of ourselves.” — Joseph P. Thompson

“I put aside my copy of “BOWLING WORLD” and think about GUN CONTROL legislation..” — Zippy the Pinhead

“As far as the laws of mathematics refer to reality, they are not certain, and as far as they are certain, they do not refer to reality.” — Albert Einstein

“Trouble rather the tiger in his lair than the sage amongst his books. For to you Kingdoms and their armies are things mighty and enduring, but to him they are but toys of the moment, to be overturned by the flicking of a finger.” — Chinese proverb

Hmm…. an eclectic little group, eh? In looking at the whole pearl, I think I would suggest shuffling them around a bit, to see if a different configuration will shake it down to a point where it’s a bit more transparent, or at least organized into a sequential thought pattern…. Or, not….

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Having dutifully proofed, edited, and polished, I consider this done…. Moreover, after carefully performing the appropriate calculations, I am convinced there really isn’t any more damage I can do…. That means it would be a good idea to end this now, and get on with the rest of the day….

Oh…. Okay, that means me…. Very well…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes, provided the BRC hasn’t found me yet….

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest  Carole, Mark, and Theresa…
and everyone else, too…

When I works, I works hard.
When I sits, I sits loose.
When I thinks, I falls asleep.

Which is Why….


Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes,
I just sits.

gigoid the dubious

dozer3

How to train predator birds with vertigo….

Ffolkes,

A word is dead
When it is said
Some say.
I say it just
Begins to live
That day.

~~  Emily Dickinson ~~


Was Emily channeling the future with this poem? With the correct tilt to the head, with a slight look around the corner of the eye, this would be IS a very good statement to support the concept of blogging…. Each of us bloggers MUST abide by this feeling, in order to continue to post….

Well, I do, anyway…. But, I’m an Emily fan, so maybe that has something to do with it….. We all tend to fall back on the words of our favorites when it comes to justifying our own existence, or, in this case, our own continued presence on the web….

Okay…. So, was that a bit more comfortable? I thought a bit of a different opening might be in order….. Not that I feel the old way wasn’t working, but, I’ve never been quite satisfied with that part of the Daily Pearl…. Breaking past the morning block that almost everyone’s mind suffers upon first awakening has become, if not easy, at least doable….. But, the fear of the blank white screen still hovers in the background, always ready to jump up, freeze my brain’s connection to my fingers, & generally put a complete halt to the morning’s process of writing….. Damned neuroses!….

In the last few months, I’ve managed to NOT feel the fear so consistently, by using a combination of trickery, cheer leading, and flat out lying to myself, which seems to be working fairly well…. we haven’t had a freeze-up in close to a year. But, it’s never been an easy process, and I’ve never felt fully engaged in how it gets done….

I’ve always felt that somewhere, deep inside the back reaches of my brain, there is a structure, a building of words, so to speak, that I will someday find, establishing a solidly constructed edifice here at the beginning of each Pearl, to mark the beginning of another fine piece of work….

That is probably just another of my fantasies, but, hey, it’s MY fantasy, so leave it alone, okay? We all need our illusions to keep us going…. I know this; otherwise, why would we put up with so much fictional bullshit from our leaders? I’ve always known, and been saddened, by the knowledge that our leaders are liars; congenital, trained, or just naturally glib, it doesn’t matter, they’re all a bunch of self-serving assholes who would lie to their own mother if they thought it would buy her vote….

Oops! Ranting mode…. stand clear, please…. Okay, I turned it off, you can relax….. Almost started in on the BRC there…. I guess they just make too attractive a target to leave them alone too long…. I’ll not start that here in the intro today, though, for which I’m sure you are thankful….

I suppose, given we’ve managed to wander through a number of paragraphs already, we could conceivably call this completed, and get on with the day’s business…. Since I’ve had eight sold hours of sleep, and my pain meds are currently ahead of the pain, score-wise, I think I’ll go ahead and do that…. I suppose there are worse ways to start the day….

In fact, I KNOW there are, as I’m familiar with just about ALL of the different ways one can start badly….

Shall we Pearl?….

How good is man’s life, the mere living! how fit to employ
All the heart and the soul and the senses forever in joy!

 — Robert Browning (1812-1890) — Saul, ix

_____________________________

As iterated above, ranting is on hold…. Since it is, and I want to keep going, we’ll put today’s old-school pearl here…. It will give me something easy to do, and pass the time until I am ready to go find something in the news upon which to focus my vitriol…. a waste bin, as it were, for the angst I wish to throw away…. For now, let’s find a group of pearls that says something about Life At Large….

“You may be sure that when a man begins to call himself a realist, he is preparing to do something he is secretly ashamed of doing.” — Sydney Harris

(Side note: When applied to politicians, the accuracy of this statement approaches 101% validity. — gigoid….)

“They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.” — Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790) –Historical Review of Pennsylvania, 1759

“Wisdom outweighs any wealth.” — Sophocles (406 BC)

“I never resist temptation, because I have found that things that are bad for me do not tempt me.” — George Bernard Shaw, “The Apple Cart” (1929), Act II

“You may be disappointed if you fail, but you are doomed if you don’t try.” — Beverly Sills

“In morals, what begins in fear usually ends in wickedness; in religion, what begins in fear usually ends in fanaticism. Fear, either as a principle or a motive, is the beginning of all evil.” — Mrs. Jameson

“Why does there have to be an end to the rainbow? Can’t we just let beauty exist without trying to prove that it dies?” — Spite, The University of Akron

PERFECT! Q.E.D., mon amis….
_____________________________

Here is one of my favorite poems; it’s been here before, and, no doubt, will be here again…. This time, it has the name of the translator, who does an excellent job of creating a compelling English equivalent from the ancient Chinese verses….Enjoy!….

Drinking Alone

I take my wine jug out among the flowers
to drink alone, without friends.

I raise my cup to entice the moon.
That, and my shadow, makes us three.

But the moon doesn’t drink,
and my shadow silently follows.

I will travel with moon and shadow,
happy to the end of spring.

When I sing, the moon dances.
When I dance, my shadow dances, too.

We share life’s joys when sober.
Drunk, each goes a separate way.

Constant friends, although we wander,
we’ll meet again in the Milky Way.

~~ Li T’ai-po  ~~

tr. Hamil

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“When I see a bird that walks like a duck and swims like a duck and quacks like a duck, I call that bird a duck.” — Richard Cardinal Cushing

“If you call a dog’s tail a leg, what do you have? A dog. Calling a tail a leg, doesn’t make it a leg.” — Abraham Lincoln

Aren’t these complementary pearls great? They’re the perfect lead-in for a rant about politicians, most of whom are of the type of person (I use the word liberally….) who regularly attempts to convince the public they are NOT a duck, or a dog, when, in truth, they either quack, or bark, quite clearly…..

The subject of politicians lying to the public is one I spend a lot of time writing about here, so it would fit right in with all of my other rants very well…. Unfortunately, the news is currently being usurped with a story that makes it far to EASY to show how wide-spread the issue is in our government….

Leland Yee, a California State Senator from San Francisco, and Raymond “Shrimp Boy” Chow,  a Tong leader from SF’s Chinatown district, (Kinda makes ya wonder, don’t it?  “Shrimp Boy?”….. Personally, I get all SORTS of weird mental images popping up when I say those two words to myself….), have been arrested, and are being charged with a number of counts related to their  (alleged…..     :-)    …)  long-term involvement in drugs, gun-running, political corruption via voting, murder-for-hire, and just about every crime against society that exists, save for, perhaps, stealing from babies….. and that one isn’t out of the question for these two…. I just didn’t see that among the charges for which they were indicted….

It seems that for over twenty years, Yee was selling votes and political influence to Chow, and others, for lucrative economic advantage, for him, and for those who benefited from the programs he voted in to being. He also laundered millions of dollars of ill-gotten gains, by using his political campaign accounts to accept donations, for the Chinese Tong, run by Chow….

This money was collected from prostitution, drug, and racketeering enterprises, all run by the Tong. An undercover FBI agent infiltrated the Tong organization, establishing trust by posing as an ex-Mafioso of high repute, whereby he was able to gather tons of condemning evidence of their corruption, for over four years before the arrests were made…

But, it’s all too easy a target…. In fact, the focus being placed on these two will, long-term, have the opposite effect that it should….. These two clearly criminal individuals are providing too obvious a target for the public’s ire, thus taking it AWAY from all the other, less obviously corrupt politicians out there, almost ALL of whom are hard at work raiding the public treasury, but are much better at hiding their machinations than these two clowns appear to be…

Putting all the public’s attention on a couple of bozoids, who managed to get caught, literally red-handed, with their fingers in the public till, will ultimately have the effect of making other politicians appear to be more honest than they actually are…. That’s human nature, and the pundits, who all know this, will be using it to their advantage for a long time to come….

So, rather than waste a lot of my time and angst-driven energy on ranting about the corruption they are exposing, I’ll just remind you that what you are seeing is NOT atypical for politicians, and shouldn’t be thought of as an anomaly, but, rather, as an omen of things to come, when we expose ALL their asses, and throw them ALL out of office, and out of our lives…. (Picture an iceberg, 90% unseen, floating on the ocean…. Yee & Chow are a small part of the ice visible above the water line….)

Then, when I know you’ve realized that, in spite of all the nonsense in the news, detailing the shenanigans of what they’d like us to believe are swans swimming in the public pond, you now see they are really only ducks, stealing food from the swans, and the dogs, to wit: from you and me… Once you’ve realized how the politicians of this government are NOT in the business of helping us, but are only in Washington to steal as much as they can during their term of office, is the absolute truth, with a capital T, we can go on…..

Now, since y’all have put up with my blathering for so long on such an obvious issue, I’ll reward your forbearance by throwing together a set of pearls to further illustrate and/or enhance my points, to close this off with a flourish…. which, though not particularly common here, is, no doubt, warmly welcome when it occurs…. Enjoy!…..

“The seeds of our own punishment are sown at the same time we commit sin.” — Hesiod

(Sin, otherwise defined as voting…. the two words are interchangeable when politics are involved….)

“Intolerance of ambiguity is the mark of an authoritarian personality.” — Theodor W. Adorno

Gerald Ford: In the Bob Hope Golf Classic, the participation of President Gerald Ford was more than enough to remind you that the nuclear button was at one stage at the disposal of a man who might have either pressed it by mistake or else pressed it deliberately in order to obtain room service.” — Clive James

“If they become politicians they were switched at birth.” — Mom’s Hint #096

“A kitchen in every pot.  I mean, a pot in every — I mean, a chicken in every…” — George Bush, 1988

“All a man needs to be elected President is the kind of profile that looks good on a postage stamp.” — B.B. Franklin

“We can’t be so fixated on our desire to preserve the rights of ordinary Americans…” — President William Jefferson Clinton, USA TODAY 11 Mar 1993

“As Athenodorus was taking his leave of Caesar, “Remember,” said he, “Caesar, whenever you are angry, to say or do nothing before you have repeated the four-and-twenty letters to yourself.” — Plutarch (46-120 AD) — Caesar Augustus

“Now I’m having INSIPID THOUGHTS about the beautiful, round wives of HOLLYWOOD MOVIE MOGULS encased in PLEXIGLASS CARS and being approached by SMALL BOYS selling FRUIT..” — Zippy the Pinhead

Damn, that was close…. I thought for sure I’d NEVER get out of there!…. Smart Bee took me at my word, and proceeded to inundate me with pearl after pearl that just fit into the group seamlessly…. I managed to keep it down to eight, then got lucky, and found the perfect Zippy quote for closing it off with just the right touch of nearly-coherent insanity…. “He was bigger than me, Ma, but, I took ‘im down!”….. Now we can all go get some rest….

You, you, and you, panic. The rest of you, come with me….
_____________________________

I suppose we will be forced at this point to declare a moral victory…. We only had to leave behind three bodies in a state of panic, but, the rest of us made it through to here, so, I have to count that on the positive side of the scale…. Otherwise, they’d close me down….

Besides, one of the three bozoids we left behind was a trained bozoid, so they’ll all eventually stop screaming & jumping around like idiots, whereupon the bozo will get hungry, and the others will follow as he goes off to find the exit door behind the nearest banyan tree….

On that phantasmagorical note, I’m outta here…. and, none too soon, I’m can tell…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes…..

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest  Carole, Mark, and Theresa…
and everyone else, too…

When I works, I works hard.
When I sits, I sits loose.
When I thinks, I falls asleep.

Which is Why….


Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes,
I just sits.

gigoid the dubious

dozer3

How many asparagus spears can we salvage for cloning?….

Ffolkes,

Ah, good morning…. You may want to consider coming back later, or, if that isn’t doable, then, it’s probably best if you DUCK!!!…. Whew! Close one…. So, how’s it going this fine, beautiful morning…. Huh? What was that? Oh, nothing important, not to worry. We’re testing out some drones for the CIA, for use in the upcoming revolution…. Why, you might ask, am I helping the CIA perfect weapons for use on our own citizens? Well, there’s quite a story behind that, so, take a seat, and I’ll tell you….

It’s like this, you see…. I was approached by an agent from Langley, the CIA HQ, with a proposition that I figured might be one to take, for a number of valid reasons… First, you need to realize that my helping them is a sham…. I’m actually undercover for those self-same forces of the revolution, gathering information to be used when it all breaks loose here in the next few years. It’s just a matter of keeping my enemies closer than my friends, so that I know what they’re up to behind all those closed doors and high walls…. metaphorical as those may be. I’m sure that is exactly what they are doing by hiring me, so, turnabout is fair play….

Second, its’ fun! Playing with all these neat toys the government gets to play with, all months before the technology is filtered down to the public, where watered down versions of what the BRC has to use are sold to amuse those in the public venue who like toys, and to make the public believe the state of the technology is less than it actually is…. What? You thought they’d give up the edge by giving us the same level of developed technology as THEY have? Think again, ffolkes, the public only sees the prototypes, not the finished versions… For example, I see how the Army now has functioning laser weapons that can target and destroy planes in flight…. How many of those do you think they’ll be allowing the public to have, eh?….

Okay, fantasy done…. I don’t feel much like carrying that any further; it was already too cumbersome to do much more with…. Those three paragraphs, I can tell, are going to need some serious punching up to get them right…. It’s a good concept, but clumsily started, so I’ll have to figure out how to clean it up for consumption…. I like the concept, but my execution wasn’t spot on…. I think the victim is dead…. I’m going to have to resort to one of the emergency methods for getting out of this intro, because this is starting to feel somewhat sticky, & hard to get off my fingers….

Okay, that sinks it…. Now, my carpal tunnel is chiming in, to let me know it doesn’t want to type right now, at least not as much as other parts of me want to keep at it….. I HATE internal struggles, they’re so…… ARRRGH!!!! Fuck, fuck, fuck…. Sorry, but, sometimes, vulgarity is the only thing that works to ease the pain, or end the frustration…. That’s it, I’m done….. Immediate deployment, method #4, on 3…. One…. two….. three….

Shall we Pearl?….

“What about these commandments then?”
“You again?  All right…  There shall be TWO commandments, and this shall be the first of them: “Keep the noise down.”
“Just that?  `Keep the noise down’?”
“You got it.”
“Hmmm.  And the second of Your commandments, Lord?”
“Do what thou wilst,” (sayeth the Lord), “just go away and don’t bother Me now.  For behold, some of Us are trying to get some sleep around here.”

– Seven Deadly Sins

(I dunno…. it works for me….. If one MUST put up with a deity, one who likes His naps would be a good one…. Just sayin’…..)
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In terms of routine, I’m a dead man walking, and I’m not interested today in any false heroism or pride; I’m going to cheat all I can to get this done in a timely manner, and the hell with my integrity as an author…. Considering some of what I’ve foisted upon an unsuspecting public, I should probably be the most like candidate for the next public hanging, or, perhaps, a bit of time in the pillory, metaphorically speaking….

Regardless of all that, or whatever other silly crap I can come up with, the following is an excellent rant…. a politirant, but, with plenty of vituperation to go around, in case the PHs, SCMs, or the IMs feel like they’re missing out….. As I sat in the morning air after this section, it occurred to me that, though this rant was written almost exactly six months ago, every word in it is still valid, as related to the issues under discussion…. Not a lot of progress in that time, was there?….. Ah, well, life goes on….. Enjoy…..

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From March 7, 2013:

“It is useless for sheep to pass resolutions in favor of vegetarianism while wolves remain of a different opinion.” — William Ralph Inge, D. D.  1860 – 1954

I’ve seen this little statement before, and like it a lot, for its honesty in describing our Beloved Ruling Class in relation to the flock of sheep that comprises most of mankind. And, yes, this is the beginning of another politirant…. This one is prompted by the most recent activities that our leaders, if such word applies, have been shown to be engaged in by the news outlets I watch…. to wit: the legislation under review and up for vote in the House of Reps that is concerned with the economy, to wit: the “sequester”, and the recent comments by the POTUS re: global warming and climate change…. Let’s see what we can note about these issues, shall we?….

I have noticed that the Congress, and the POTUS, are currently at odds, as usual, over the economy, and arguing over how to address an issue over which they have absolutely no control…. I just don’t get it, actually…. There is no evidence whatsoever that anything the government does, or has ever done, about the economy has any effect at all on it…. none.

Zero. Zilch. Nada damn thing…. The economy of the world, or even just this nation, is not subject to any manipulation by us; it’s too big, too amorphous…. It’s like trying to herd cats…. a lot of effort for small results, and you end up with a bunch of pissed off felines…. If you know anything about cats, you will realize that this is never a good thing….

Yet, because the public demands that something be done, the politicians start their idiotic posturing, pontificating, and, otherwise polluting the airwaves with nonsensical suggestions as to what should be done to fix the problems. NONE of those ever work, nor will they ever work; the economy does not move according to any rules that we can control, or even know, and any action we take is just as liable to have a bad effect as a good one…. But, the public wants the government to fix it, so the politicos in the BRC make noises as if they actually could do something helpful, when in fact, anything they do is as liable to hurt, as it is to help…. Sad, but, true as the day is long.

It’s actually kind of fun watching the contortions they go through for issues such as this; since I know for a fact that none of it will have any real effect on the issue, I can enjoy the parade without worrying about whether it will actually do anything useful, or cause any harm…. It is a bit depressing to watch, since I am aware of just how little can be done, but, the show can be entertaining, and it does pass the time….

The most depressing part is knowing that the public is actually buying all of what they are saying, and really do expect something to change for the better…. But, then, I am always amazed at the depth of human stupidity. I don’t know why, as I KNOW how dumb people can be…. I am one, you know…. but, it always is a surprise to see just how deeply that stupidity is ingrained in the human condition….

Of course, this stupidity is part and parcel of why we are experiencing the second issue I mentioned above…. global warming and overpopulation. I will be very interested to see exactly how the POTUS intends to address the issue, as he has promised to do, several times now since his inauguration. Since the issue is well advanced beyond the point that most people think it is, what he does, or proposes to do, will be a telling factor in deciding how seriously the issue is being taken, and whether or not it will have any chance at all of being either enough to help, or soon enough to make a difference…. Both of these are critical factors, as the point of no-return for the ecological balance of this planet is so near, it may have already been passed some months, or years, ago….

I’m not sure how scientifically minded many of y’all are, but, I am…. scientifically minded, that is, and I can tell you without fear of contradiction (from anyone with any reliable scientific knowledge, anyway….) that the atmosphere of this planet is, without doubt, and without evidence to the contrary, on the very edge of becoming unbreathable for humans….

The millions of tons of carbon monoxide, and other toxic substances, that are being pumped into the air EVERY SECOND, and that has been pumped in now for over a hundred years, has reached the point where it will begin a process of leaching oxygen from the air, and the balance of gases we need to survive will change…. Hell, it IS changing, and fairly rapidly…. It will continue to do so, ever more swiftly, until it is no longer of a balance that we can safely breathe; moreover, once begun, the process is irreversible. The process is beyond our capability of stopping…. This is scientific FACT, not speculation, not a guess….. The process has already begun, the only question remaining is, how quickly will it happen?

“In the game of life you get to choose where you keep your brain – heads you win, tails you lose.” — Smart Bee

So, we’ll see where the POTUS keeps his brain, as he speaks in the next few days about this issue…. Whatever he decides to do, I would be willing to bet that it won’t be enough, and it won’t make a damn bit of difference, other than in a few Presidential approval polls, perhaps. After all, even though he is a fairly reform-oriented politician, he is still a politician, and you can lay good money, without fear of losing, on the fact that whatever he does is designed to benefit him and his Presidency, and any benefit for the public is a secondary concern….

He IS a politician, after all, and his primary concern is for his own success; it’s NOT the welfare of the people…. He has merely discovered that being the “People’s Champion” is currently a good political stance to take…. If it ever becomes too itchy a coat to wear, he will take it off in a heartbeat…. Count on it…. You don’t get to that level of the game without being a complete asshole in some respects, and I don’t think anyone who WANTS to be President can be accused of not being ambitious, and, in the process, they brand themselves as sociopathic….

“No people in the world ever did achieve their freedom by goody-goody talk and moral suasion: it being immutable law that all revolutions that will succeed, must begin in blood, whatever the answer afterward. If history teaches anything, it teaches that.” — Mark Twain, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court (1889)

In this case, we aren’t talking about freedom, unless by that, one means the freedom to stay alive…. and the BRC isn’t going to do anything about it, I don’t believe…. Or, rather, I’ll believe it when I see it, and, so far, no dice in that respect. I’m enough of a cynic to believe, sadly, that it isn’t GOING to happen, either…. because I don’t believe that the POTUS, or the rest of the BRC, gives a damn about the rest of us, as long as they have their own…. This much is obvious from history, but, when did mankind at large ever pay any attention to history?….

If you have some evidence that contradicts that belief, I would dearly love to see it…. Truly, I would, because, quite frankly, my own intelligence, and the evidence I have now, forces me to conclude that we humans are shortly about to come to a bad end…. not with a bang, not with a whimper, but, choking to death in our own planet’s toxic air, victims to our own stupidity, and cupidity….

Daniel: “We’re damned if we do, we’re damned if we don’t; we need other options….” — from Stargate
_____________________________

Since I’m cheating already, there is no point in making anyone else feel at all guilty by association, so, here is a poem of my own, from September of 2012, which, apparently, was not a bad year for poetry…

Visible life

Forty-two days of pressure and internal rain,
leave marks of salvation, often in pain.
Such sharp reminders of yesterday’s remorse
fight heavily to keep a straight course.
Rash moments, bright, and routinely immense
Give us pleasure, bereft of common sense.

Still the night comes soft and eternally dear
to bring out wishful dreams so vitally clear.
Life’s myrmidons give freely in protest
lifting with skill, soul pieces first to infest,
Loudly brash, with no such voices to remain
Sealed in infamy, branded ugliness all too plain.

Now come brave signs of chapter and verse
Shielded by ignorance, irritable and terse.
Gravid portions of in-between retaliation
leave only pale marks of initial gestation
With hope even pallid warriors grow brave
Leading all humanity, to a warm, stale grave.

Hope never falters, nor leaves any trace
Yet lingers forever in a welcoming space.
Cheerful faces yet shine out of time
for tricking and fumbling sweet melody sublime.
Fill in the spaces with a long, strong retort
life is ever visible, if only as last resort.

~~ gigoid ~~

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A couple of the following quotes were found prior to the collection of the remainder, because I found them at different times, in different places, and intended to use them for a couple of rants…. Since that is off the agenda for today, due to circumstances I have no desire to alter, even if possible, I’m including them as part of what I call an indictment pearl, one that takes as many hard shots at the BRC, et al, as I can fit into a short, five-star volley…. Let’s see if SB will cooperate today….

“Make no laws whatever concerning speech and, speech will be free; so soon as you make a declaration on paper that speech shall be free, you will have a hundred lawyers proving that “freedom does not mean abuse, nor liberty license;” and they will define and define freedom out of existence.” — Voltarine de Cleyre (1866-1912)

“I think our governments will remain virtuous for many centuries; as long as they are chiefly agricultural; and this will be as long as there shall be vacant lands in any part of America. When they get piled upon one another in large cities, as in Europe, they will become corrupt as in Europe.” —  Thomas Jefferson

“I see in the near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety of my country…. Corporations have been enthroned, an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money-power of the country will endeavor to prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until the wealth is aggregated in a few hands and the Republic is destroyed.  — Former US President Abraham Lincoln, Nov. 21, 1864 — letter to Col. William F. Elkins — printed in “The Lincoln Encyclopedia”, — ed. Archer H. Shaw, Macmillan, 1950, NY

“He that would make his own liberty secure must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates this duty he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself.” — Thomas Paine

“The belief in a supernatural source of evil is not necessary; men alone are quite capable of every wickedness.” — Joseph Conrad, “Under Western Eyes”

“An experienced, industrious, ambitious, and often quite often picturesque liar.” — Mark Twain

Well, aside from Smart Bee pulling its covers, showing us it doesn’t know how to count, that came out well…. Maybe it needs one more….

“If we were to promise people nothing better than only revolution, they would scratch their heads and say: “Is it not better to have good goulash?” — Nikita Khruschev, quoted 1971

I love it when a plan comes together, even if the formatting has gone wonky….
_____________________________

For reasons unbeknownst to me, the formatting above decided to fuss with me, changing stuff without warning or purpose…. Since I don’t feel like tracking down the cause just now, it will have to do the way it is, and I’ll fix it on the fly, as it were…. Aha! Found it… Well, not exactly, but, the copy and paste process seems to have eliminated the wonkiness…. Okay, not bad, but, I still feel as if I’m in a panic, or should be…. I kind of feel like this man felt, back in the day…..

“I drank WHAT???????” — Socrates (470?-399 B.C.)

Ah well, we can only do our best…. or, as gigoid has so aptly put it, many times and many ways, in the recent, as well as the far-distant past, “All we can do, is all we can do….”  On that note, I shall bid thee adieu for another day….

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest  Carole, Mark, and Theresa…
and everyone else, too…

When I works, I works hard.
When I sits, I sits loose.
When I thinks, I falls asleep.

Which is Why….


Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

dozer3

Another in a long line of wretched laundry confessions….

Ffolkes,

Since it’s already six of one, I’m going to assume that it’s also half dozen of another, and, in spite of how it may seem, or whether or not it is ethical, or moral, or not, that’s the way it will stay. There isn’t a damn thing a single one of us can do about it, so any reluctance to acknowledge this state of affairs can only lead to difficulties for you, and, more critically, for your immediate family…. Sorry, but, natural law is natural law, and there is nothing any of us can do about it, is there? Try to capitulate with some grace, and be a credit to your family, eh?

Nonsense and snide innuendo aside, how y’all doin’? It’s been an interesting two or three days, what with moving, landlord bullying, and internet epiphanies, so I’ll try to correlate some of the more outré information into a palatable format, thus turning shit into jewelry (crap –> pearls). Or not, I’m not sure, and I definitely don’t care HOW it happens, as long as it happens, and does so without bloodshed. I’m running out of bandaging material, or I wouldn’t even care about the blood, so, since I’m strewing BS all over the place at an alarming rate already, we’ll go on, to save resources…

Where, you may ask? Where, indeed…. we are off into the wilds of gigoid’s brain, where there is no telling just what we may find in the nature of biting criticism of humanity’s most dishonorable, shady behaviors (especially as perpetrated by those who would be seen as our leaders…), elegant verse (well, I DO post other poets!….), gut-busting humor, and crunchy, healthful, and flavorful snacks….

Okay, so I’m a bit delusional this morning; it’s a natural defense against getting up so early, which, having failed to keep me asleep, inevitably turns to the bag of tricks furnished by a long history of insane thought patterns, along with years and years of exposure to the most virulently insane folks on the planet, when I worked as a psychotherapist…..

But, I digress…. I think…. Is it possible to digress, when one is already lost in space, and time? Hmm, I’ll have to think about that one, one of these days…. In the meantime, I should probably think about getting started with today’s Pearl…. We are fairly well settled in to the new place, and the cat is now a happy camper, with three more rooms in which to practice her psycho-kitty skills, and an extra person to bedevil…. There are only four more boxes of stuff to put away, and a bed to buy….. otherwise, we are good to go, and much more content to be in a building with only one quiet neighbor, instead of 16, comprised of people displaying diverse levels of ignorance, as well as a significant number with unfortunate taste in music . It’s a good thing, yes, it is….

It is now 0540, and I have the entire day ahead of me…. which, I just realized, is one of my favorite things, because these moments are filled with potential…. nothing is yet determined, and the day is mine to do with as I please…. It’s nice to start it with a kiss from a beautiful blonde, too… Since the day is starting so well, and I have wandered sufficiently around my head for the intro section to reach the legal limit, I’m going to make like a tree, and leave…. Ouch, sorry, didn’t mean to get so old and corny…. it just sort of sounded right, but, next time, I’ll go more modern, and save the corn to cook with…. (Sorry again…. couldn’t help it…)

Shall we Pearl?

“A string of excited, fugitive, miscellaneous pleasures is not happiness; happiness resides in imaginative reflection and judgment, when the picture of one’s life, or of human life, as it truly has been or is, satisfies the will, and is gladly accepted.” — George Santayana
_____________________________

“The great French Marshall Lyautey once asked his gardener to plant a tree. The gardener objected that the tree was slow growing and would not reach maturity for 100 years. The Marshall replied, In that case, there is no time to lose; plant it this very afternoon.” — John F. Kennedy

What a great little anecdote! I love to see a great life lesson told in a few short words…. Here is a perfect description of the attitude one requires to achieve happiness…. Yes, happiness, an old word, one bandied about much by the uninformed, and the unhappy…. Happy people never need to use the word itself, as they are just…. there. There is little need to think about being happy, when you are, and in fact, not thinking about it is one of the keys to holding it, once found…. Sadly, it is a rare person in today’s world who can sustain long periods where they feel happy the entire time; the world intrudes too much into our lives to give us leave to be happy, unless we know the secret…..

Yes, there’s a secret….. Of course, it’s the kind of secret that is hidden right in plain sight, like Poe’s Purloined Letter. It only requires that one be willing to accept it, and to allow it to enter into one’s spirit, suffusing the world in the less harsh light of contentment, rather than the cold, hard light of resentment. People tend to be like the gardener, blocking their own happiness by finding all kinds of reasons to NOT allow it entry into their world. As humans, we are taught at young age to view reality with stoicism, and mute, unquestioning acceptance of our lot; we are shown all the ways to look ahead, to see the worst of what can happen, in order to be prepared….

But, there is another way to approach the matter, one little known, and therefore little taught…Reality is a tough go, for sure, but, with a little bit of mental effort, much easier than the alternative, one can be in control of how it (Reality) affects one’s life. In short, Life treats us all like shit; what determines how much of it gets in our sandwich depends solely on us, and how we react to that shit…. We can slap the shit between two slices of bread, and choke it down…. or, we can use it as fertilizer, to grow some rather nice weed…. potent, and good for you….

Whatever one decides, the choice remains, as long as one is aware of the options. The problem with most folks is, they don’t see the options, or they don’t believe they will work, as their attitudes keep them from even trying a lot of new ways to do things. I won’t say it is this way for all people, but the greatest majority of people I see in the world are unhappy, without ever realizing that a) they don’t have to be unhappy, and b) being happy is within their power to choose…. It’s too bad, really, because that unhappiness is part of what makes people go wonky, losing integrity, honor, and any sense of morality, in order to reach for an illusion, an illusion of happiness that, even if grasped, will drift away and vanish, like smoke in a breeze….

This little mini-diatribe was intended to be more…. more clear, more inspiring, more helpful in getting people to think in different ways…. However, I seem to have lost that thread, and it’s getting a bit obscure, and thick…. So, I’m going to switch to old-school, and politely ask Smart Bee to give me the right words to accomplish that intent, without having to subject y’all to another thousand words of pedantic persuasion…. Well, that’s how it’s supposed  to work, anyway…. If not, at least it will have been more palatable, with more chocolate chips….

“Going to bed with a woman never hurt a ballplayer. It’s staying up all night looking for them that does you in.” — Casey Stengel

“Pizza is a lot like sex.  When it’s good, it’s really good.  When it’s bad, it’s still pretty good.” — Smart Bee

“Beware of the “Black Swan” fallacy.  Deductive logic is tautological; there is no way to get a new truth out of it, and it manipulates false statements as readily as true ones.  If you fail to remember this, it can trip you – with perfect logic.  The designers of the earliest computers called this the “Gigo Law”, i.e. “garbage in, garbage out”.  Inductive logic is MUCH more difficult – but can produce new truths.” — Lazarus Long

“Man errs as long as he strives.” — Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Faust

“‘T is but a part we see, and not a whole.” — Alexander Pope (1688-1744) — Essay on Man, Epistle i, Line 60

“If you tell the truth you don’t have to remember anything.” — Mark Twain

“Eternity is a mere moment, just long enough for a joke.” — Hermann Hesse

Okay, so, that works, sort of….. My apologies…. It’s not as clear as I’d hoped, though it’s quite good, in its own small way…. Not bad directions, if one is accustomed to pearls…. I’ve got it! Here is an example of how happiness works, and is available for use by anyone who wishes to use it….

I’m happy now…. I’m done….

(That’s it…. that’s the secret….. No? Not clear yet? Ah, well…. Well, we’ll try again later, ffolkes…. just remember, you CAN be happy, any time you wish…. It’s all a matter of choice….  Bonus? Nobody can take the choice away from you….)
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While searching for today’s pearls, I saw one by Pablo Neruda, so I thought I’d find, and use, one of his poems for this section; that decision is always a good one, as there are an awful lot of good poems in his work from which to choose…. Abondanza!….

Lost in the forest…

Lost in the forest, I broke off a dark twig
and lifted its whisper to my thirsty lips:
maybe it was the voice of the rain crying,
a cracked bell, or a torn heart.

Something from far off it seemed
deep and secret to me, hidden by the earth,
a shout muffled by huge autumns,
by the moist half-open darkness of the leaves.

Wakening from the dreaming forest there, the hazel-sprig
sang under my tongue, its drifting fragrance
climbed up through my conscious mind

as if suddenly the roots I had left behind
cried out to me, the land I had lost with my childhood—
and I stopped, wounded by the wandering scent.

~~ Pablo Neruda ~~

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In section 1 today, I spoke about happiness, and how to find it (i.e., stop looking, it’s right there inside you….)…. While I was searching for the proper pearls to use in the old-school portion, the following group of pearls kept popping up…. Together, they all form another fine pearl, pointing in a general way to a picture of just exactly what a person who is happy and whole looks like, or, at least, the kinds of things they do, or say, or just think they say….

“I am free, no matter what rules surround me.   If I find them tolerable, I tolerate them; if I find them too obnoxious, I break them.  I am free because I know that I alone am morally responsible for everything I do.” — Professor Bernardo de la Paz

“When the need arises — and it does — you must be able to shoot your own dog. Don’t farm it out — that doesn’t make it nicer, it makes it worse.” — Lazarus Long, from Robert A. Heinlein’s   “Time Enough For Love”

“It is the ability to choose which makes us human.” — Madeleine L’Engle (Walking on Water)

“How much time he gains who does not look to see what his neighbor says or does or thinks, but only at what he does himself, to make it just and holy.” — Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (121-180 AD) — Meditations, iv, 18

“I think a man ought to get drunk at least twice a year just on principle, so he won’t let himself get snotty about it.” — Raymond Chandler

“A person will be just about as happy as they make up their mind to be.” — Abraham Lincoln

“Sometimes, you just gotta say “What the fuck.”” — Risky Business

Wow…. perfect…. If y’all don’t like that one, well, there’s just no more hope….
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“All’s well that ends well.”….. There are days, such as today, when this is appropriate, with a slight change in punctuation… Let us say this…. “All’s well that ends, well….”, and leave it at that, shall we? Some days this process goes better than others; given the handicaps, this is better…. Now, let’s see what it looks like from the outside, shall we?….

Hmm…. That took a while…. but, I think it’s all going to be okay. Considering the content of today’s effort, I can only say that I’m good with all of it, as it not only gives me something I can be happy about, it gives me both the means to keep being happy, and a reason to do so… What more can a man ask for from life, eh? Well, winning the lottery wouldn’t hurt, and, I like to follow the example of all cats, who feel that it is always alright to ask for what you want; you won’t get it at all if you never ask…

What this means in the long view isn’t exactly clear to me right now, but, it seemed to fit, so, we’ll just show another cat-like quality, and ignore it…. I’m done, stick a fork in me…. Wait, try again, bozo…. Stick a fork in me, I’m done….. See ya, ffolkes….

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest  Carole…
and everyone else, too…

When I works, I works hard.
When I sits, I sits loose.
When I thinks, I falls asleep.

Which is Why….


Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

dozer3

Further examples of filial chicanery….

Ffolkes,

As some of y’all may have noted, yesterday’s Pearl was disrupted by Reality, whereas today’s will be characterized by Fantasy, or a reasonable facsimile thereof….The most pertinent item I recall seems to be the unexpected increase in planetary gravity that hit about 2 PM yesterday…. Didn’t you notice? It seemed quite significant to me;  I had been struggling all day to keep upright, as the normally severe sucking power of our planet pulled at me constantly, no matter what I was doing…. sitting, standing, walking, typing, driving, all of it seemed harder, as if I were swimming through heavy syrup, or wearing extra bags of sand or something…. By eight o’clock at night, I was exhausted from the effort to remain a simian of the modern variety, standing upright like a true hominid….

And, then, I woke up…. t’was a new day dawning, turning the blues and grays of the morning sky to a pale pinkish blue, lifting spirits along with hopes, unbidden. All the bad, mad stuff that filled the last days was gone, banished to wherever such things go when pinned with the light of day, and I am once again filled with piss and vinegar, so to speak, ready for whatever the new day will bring. Of course, being an inveterate planner, I already know what will happen today, at least, according to my schedule, but, Murphy has a tendency to ignore my schedules in favor of his own, with mine usually ending up in the trash, while I adjust to his…. the asshole….

I’m up at my usual hour, and intend to write as usual…. Intentions aren’t always enough, though, so we’ll see how it goes today. It has to be better than it was the last two days, which, even sans the kind attentions of the Murph, I spent in the dumps, thanks to the gift that keeps on giving (PTSD). I’m all better now, having thrown off the unreasoning sense of anxiety that pervaded my conscious mind, and gone beyond whatever it was that triggered the episode…. Once more, I am completely in the dark as to what that might be; I do wish I could figure it out, as it is a pain in the ass, and if I knew how to block its ascent into my consciousness, I would do so in a heartbeat…. Until I do, I am at the mercy of whatever it is, destined to fall into despair in an instant, never knowing why….

Ah well, so what else is new? Life with PTSD goes on, as I said, yesterday, sort of, if we don’t hang on to it too tight, and I’m determined NOT to grip it tightly enough to hold it in its place…. If you see me doing so, please tickle me, or throw some water, or something to let me know, as I’m done with feeling bad for no good reason…. It’s a waste of time I could use to be doing something more constructive….. Of course, writing this blog may or may not fall precisely into that category, but, it’s what I do, so deal…. And, speaking of what I do….  Shall we Pearl?
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“One of the merits of democracy is quite obvious: it is perhaps the most charming form of government ever devised by man.  The reason is not far to seek.  It is based on propositions that are palpably not true — and what is not true, as everyone knows, is always immensely more fascinating and satisfying to the vast majority of men than what is true.” — H. L. Mencken

With this statement, Mr. Mencken has put his finger on the pulse of America, that is for certain. It goes a long way toward explaining why so many people in this country are so willing to believe the outright, egregious lies that are told to them every single day by the officials they elect every year at the polls that characterize our republic…. They do lie, you know, with almost every statement that comes out of their mouths…. They begin with the most important lie they tell, from which all the others spring, and that is the lie they tell when they tell you that they want to be elected so they can work for YOU! Each and every politician learns early in their career, if they are at all to be successful, they MUST portray themselves as a public-spirited, honest, and tireless worker whose only purpose is to make life better for their constituents….

Of course, nothing could be further from the truth…. NONE of them are at all concerned with any of that nonsense; they are there to carry out their own agenda, which has very little to do with what is good for the general run of mankind…. No, they are there to serve the interests of the men and women who pay them, those lobbyists and special interest representatives who run the businesses of the corporate masters.

The people on the street cannot provide them with the perks, or the cash, that the clandestine rulers are able to come up with, other than peripherally, by electing them in the first place…. Once elected, their true colors come out into the light of day, and it can be easily seen how their actions are never congruent with what they have promised to the people who elected them….

It’s all about power and money to these folks, not service. In my entire life of observing politics around the world, I have yet to see a single elected official who could be shown to be honest, not at the national level. The one who came the closest was Jimmy Carter, and his presidency was marked by how little got done, because he was so honest that the true politicians in Congress blocked every reform he tried to institute during his time in office. His actions during that time showed him to be the exception to the usual rule for politicians, which is why, I believe, he was so ineffective as a legislator….

“Invest in America — Buy Japan!”– Smart Bee

Other than Carter, I have seen concrete proof that EVERY President of this country has lied to the American people, not just once or twice, but continuously, about nearly everything. Time and time again, public outcries are heard or seen in the news about some new revelation regarding something some politician lied about, just like it is breaking news or something, when it is actually the normal state of affairs….

I don’t know why it is, but if a man on a TV set, wearing a suit and tie, makes a statement to the public, the general public will believe it, sometimes fanatically, without ever examining it for whether or not it is true… Then, when it turns out they were lied to, they get all upset and vocalize their displeasure, never once admitting it was their own cupidity that allowed the lie to occur in the first place…. It makes me wonder what happened to people in this country, to make them go soft in the head….

“Doctors are the same as lawyers; the only difference is that lawyers merely rob you, whereas doctors rob you and kill you too.” — Anton Chekhov

Did you ever notice how many politicians were lawyers, first? Most of them, as it turns out, for the simple reason that learning to be a lawyer gives a politician two advantageous types of training… One advantage is that law school teaches the student how to lie in every imaginable way, in order to ascertain which kinds of lies are legal…. The other advantage is their primary motivation….

If asked, a very large percentage of lawyers will tell you their reason for becoming a barrister in the first place is that it is a good way to get rich, ( without mentioning, of course, that this is true only as long as one doesn’t give a shit about other people, and what that might do to them)…. In other words they make their money by taking advantage of people’s misery, holding them as hostages against their own destiny, in order to gain resources, i.e. money, and its sidekick, power…..

Then the lawyers realize that their training is perfect for politics…. The ability to lie with facility comes in very handy to anyone who wants to be in the public eye, as that is how one gets elected in the first place…. Tell people what they want to hear, and they will vote for you, every time, coming back to the same trough to eat, even though they get screwed, time after time…. Having the facility to ignore what happens to others, due to their own actions, is the other skill so important to the political set, and the training one receives as a lawyer fits right into that category….

“Watching the democratic party in a presidential contest is like watching a washing machine with a defective bearing:  It starts up smoothly enough, but soon, it begins to wobble and shake, jumping violently from place to place, until it tears itself to pieces, spewing dirty laundry all over the room.” –Smart Bee

Some people will say that there ARE some good lawyers out there, and I won’t argue that…. but, they’re still lawyers, not politicians, aren’t they? They’re doing what they can to help ffolkes find their way through the morass of our legal system to get what they need, even occasionally finding some justice…. But, they aren’t going further, and going into public service, are they? They’re still in place, where they can help, but, they are so few and far between, they are hard to find, and so are very busy, seldom having the time or resources to work against their less honest colleagues. Plus, they really are very few in number, as altruists seldom become lawyers in the first place….

I can see that this has evolved into a full scale rant, and we’ve just begun the day, so I’ll call a halt here. I often feel as if I’m preaching to the choir, anyway, when I go through this stuff again…. It’s all familiar material around here, so it isn’t as if I’m presenting new ideas for your examination…. No, this is all old stuff, and, sadly, doesn’t seem to ever create the outrage that I feel in very many other ffolkes… which is too bad…..  I forget who said that “if you keep on doing things the same ways as you always have, things will always be the way they’ve always been….”, but, they were absolutely correct…. We are on a path to our own destruction, clearly, but, nobody seems to care…

Nobody, that is, who seems able to DO anything about it, and they are the ones who will need to make the changes….. The people in authority over the rest of us are wearing blinders in this respect…. The idea that what they are doing is wrong, and will eventually kill us all, doesn’t fit into their world-view, so they won’t believe it, and will continue to refuse to make any of the changes needed to re-direct our steps onto a path less dangerous.

It is up to the rest of us to get it done, and that may entail overthrowing the current crop of rulers, either by the vote, or by the less agreeable option of using the necessary force, while making sure the new crop will act in OUR best interests, rather than their own…. If it does happen, it will be the first time in history, which is fine with me…. just as long as it is not the LAST time in history….

“… democracy is not something you believe in, or a place you hang your hat, but it’s something you do.  You participate.  If you stop doing it, democracy crumbles and falls apart.” — Abby Hoffman
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At least one poem that has been marinating in my head has leaked out this morning, as I suspected it might….. I’m not sure where it came from, or what I should do with it, but, here it is…. any suggestions?….. Be nice, now…. I ain’t Yeats, but, I’ve done worse, too….

A Dubiously Soft Morning

Idiosyncratic images, clamoring for regard,
fill up the white, white screen on which I view
my life, never seeing, nor invited to sup
ambrosial remnants of anything new.

Still, but almost in motion, allegory sails away
bobbing gently, quick and easy to find,
signs of one happy child, seriously at play,
blissfully immersed, focused joy in mind.

Formidable cries of outraged simple justice
echo plaintive relevance, in half the time.
Maladaptive infants, destined for hospice
salvage an only child, daring to sing in rhyme.

Creativity equals unquestioning farce,
often reaching for absurdity, brazenly afire.
Instead, a blow is felt that no joy will soften,
accepting the price, added to the cost of desire.

~~ gigoid ~~

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“The belief that there is only one truth and that oneself is in possession of it seems to me the deepest root of all evil that is in the world.” — Max Born, physicist

I like this, mostly because of its clarity and brevity of expression…. It’s perfect no-frills wisdom, with no ups and no extras, all you need for enlightenment in one short, pithy phrase. It also exposes the basic untruth of the mindset against which Thomas Aquinas warned, when he cautioned us to “Beware the man of one book.” I often wonder how the Church scholars managed to rationalize that statement into their set of dogmatic rules, and still canonize Saint Thomas as one of the icons of their faith; this statement is so diametrically opposed to all they teach, how did it become his entry into sainthood, with all the perks that involves, like, I don’t know, what, a better seat at holy dinners?

Any who, all sarcastic smirking aside, it doesn’t make sense, but, then, most of what I have heard and read about the more popular Christian religious sects doesn’t make much sense, either…. People seem to find it compelling, though, and manage to invest a lot of time and energy fulfilling whatever agenda items having those beliefs will engender.

“History does not record anywhere at any time a religion that has any rational basis. Religion is a crutch for people not strong enough to stand up to the unknown without help. But, like dandruff, most people do have a religion and spend time and money on it and seem to derive considerable pleasure from fiddling with it.” — Lazarus Long

These, to me, are the folks who find it easier to go through life allowing what other people believe determine their own thoughts and feelings, as it is less troublesome for them to have someone else do it for them, than making the effort to understand the world on their own….. I suppose it’s okay, for them, to allow this, but, for me, it would drive me crazy in no time at all to try to believe some of what they would have me believe, because A) It doesn’t make any sense, and B) the assertions made, aside from the fantastic unbelievability of their nature, are offered without any evidence of their veracity, no proof of their actual truth. Given just those two requirements of mine for accepting something as true, none of what I heard in church makes the slightest bit of sense…

But, for well over two thousand years, this church, along with two or three competing churches, with slightly altered versions of the same set of beliefs on the same subject, has attempted to dominate human existence, saying it has the ONLY answers to the eternal questions, to wit: Is there a God? and, if so, What is He/She/It like?…. Simplistic, I know, but, an accurate paraphrased summarization, I think…. Honest, anyway, right? I mean, when one strips down the basic ideas to their bare bones, they sound ridiculous; then, when one sees there is also no real, incontrovertible proof of any of it, beyond logical constructions based on assumptions not proven, they become simply unbelievable, to my way of thinking….

Of course, one must actually THINK about this stuff, and not just assume it is true…. even what I’m saying should be examined for its own veracity…. I think all I need to do to offer proof of most of my assertions is point to either some part of reality, which generally proves without question what is real, or to something in the news that demonstrates the fallibility of what the churches offer as their dogma, which is legion. Then, once the information has been presented, it must be examined for it’s connections to what is real, in order to be able to determine for sure that it IS or IS NOT true…. Sadly, in my experience, most people skip that last step entirely, preferring to go along with what they’ve been told since they were little, because to examine it, one must first accept the possibility of being wrong in the first place…. and, that they are not willing to do….

That is the simple truth folks, no matter how much anyone tries to deny it. Reality determines what is true, not belief, or faith, and nothing anyone can say or do will ever change that simple fact of reality. There are no magic bullets, so, if we want to have magic in our lives, we have to make it ourselves, which leaves out the possibility of depending on anything in nature to do so for us, no matter how much we want it to be so, or how strongly we maintain our faith in what is unreal…. As some other philosopher has stated, “Just because a million people believe something is so, doesn’t make it so…. A lie is still a lie, even if a lot of people believe it…….. or, more colorfully…..

“If you call a dog’s tail a leg, how many legs does the dog have? Four. Calling a tail a leg, doesn’t make it a leg.” — Abraham Lincoln

So, spare me, please, the sermons, and pitying looks, because, quite frankly, the concept of Heaven bores me to tears; it sounds as if the Angel Satan throws a better party, and doesn’t expect his acolytes to curry favor…. plus, they never expect him not to lie to them, as he is right up front about it….

“I would rather be ashes than dust!  I would rather that my spark should burn out in a brilliant blaze than it should be stifled by dry-rot. I would rather be a superb meteor, every atom of me in magnificent glow, than a sleepy and permanent planet.  The proper function of man is to live, not to exist.  I shall not waste my days in trying to prolong them.  I shall use my time.” — Jack London, Jack London’s Tales of Adventure
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Such an outburst! I can see that I am right to write every day…. This stuff tends to build up if I go too long without letting it out, and there’s no telling what kind of harm THAT may cause to the space-time continuum…. Let’s see if it reads half as well as it flowed out….. Hmph, well, I think that the Pulitzer committee may want to stand down, but, it’s better than most Pearls, all in all, and it’s all freshly made stuff, so, so be it….  WYSIWYG, today, anyway…. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you….

When I works, I works hard.
When I sits, I sits loose.
When I thinks, I falls asleep.

Which is Why….


Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

dozer3

Savory redemption meatballs saved the day….

Ffolkes,

Routine is important, I think, to just about everyone, whether they know it or not. Often, I think, people don’t know just how much they depend on routines to keep their lives running smoothly, which makes it harder for them to deal, when those routines suffer unpredictable changes. What any of that has to do with this morning’s blog, I haven’t a clue, but, it sounds good, doesn’t it? Kind of classy and intelligent, as if I were some Piled High and Deep (PhD) preparing to discourse on some esoteric principle, one that is only relevant to those in a small field of scholars, and which provided the subject for a thesis nobody will ever read outside the room where the degree committee reads the papers submitted by the candidates…..

That paragraph would fit right into a thesis, too, wouldn’t you say…. pompous, obsessively wordy, and all-too-sure of its own importance, just like one of the fat cats on Wall Street…. Hmm…. I don’t know where THAT vitriol came from; it’s especially harsh for me this early, even if I were leading into a rant on the BRC and the corporate assholes who pay them. Goodness knows they deserve whatever we can give them, as they are responsible for just about ALL of the misery that is still present in the world, and will ultimately doom the entire species to an ignoble death, choking on the fumes of our own folly, gasping in pain and anguish….

I suppose that’s a bit too graphic for pre-breakfast imagery, but, what can I do? Those responsible for our state don’t give a DAMN about anyone else, and aren’t going to change; unfortunately, I don’t see the masses rising up in protest, either, as most of them don’t even realize the danger, and will believe anything told to them by some guy on TV, if he’s got the right skin color, and accent. The public is well under the control of those in power over them, and can pretty much do anything they want to do, without even having to explain. They do hand out some information, but you can be sure it has nothing to do with what they are actually up to; it is only what they wish you to hear, and believe….

I’ve had a bad habit of late, of beginning my rants right here in the intro section… which is, I see, just another evolution of routine, if I look at it in a certain way. As that will fit right in with my plan for the day (oh, you didn’t think I had a plan? Hah!….), I will now look at it that way, and declare this intro invalid, as such, and rename it “section one”, thereby removing any implications as to format, or necessary information that needs to be included. It may not make things clearer, but, it will distract you, once again, from the real issue, which, given the way things look around here today, shall remain unresolved, in the words of Poe, forevermore….

Shall we Pearl?…..
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I got up incredibly late, for me and my routine, but, it isn’t surprising, given that I was up to almost 1 AM, dealing with a friend in near-crisis mode, requiring my input and assistance…. (a discrete way of saying, helping her deal with a screwup….) It wasn’t a particularly onerous task, but, dragged out forever, as the people involved have their own sense of time, which only narrowly resembles the one the rest of us use…. The end result was that I had to stay up, waiting to complete a call to resolve the issue, before being able to go to bed, well after midnight…. So, this Pearl may be a bit of a throw-together, a patchwork pearl, so to speak, starting with this one right here, which I’m sure you’ll enjoy…. or else…. In addition, today, as a special treat, we will have the ever popular “comments in parentheses” from yours truly, just for fun….

Teach me to feel another’s woe,
To hide the fault I see;
That mercy I to others show,
That mercy show to me.

– Alexander Pope (1688-1744) — The Universal Prayer, Stanza 10
(Hard to find a better rephrasing of the Golden Rule….)

“Morality is moral only if it is voluntary.” — Lincoln Steffens
(Well, duh!…. As if there was any other way….)

“To find a fault is easy; to do better may be difficult.” — Plutarch (46 AD-120 AD)
(Huh? What does that MEAN? Oh, right…. people are selfish, and lazy, too…. got it….)

“Time, whose tooth gnaws away everything else, is powerless against truth.” — Thomas Huxley (1825-1895)
(Hmm… Sadly, time also give the unscrupulous opportunity to hide, or color, the truth, stealing some of its power, turning it to illusion….)

Ambidextrous, adj.: Able to pick with equal skill a right-hand pocket or a left. — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”
(As is now well known, this is a primary skill for any politician, and is becoming more popular every day among the religious hierarchies….)

“Whenever people say we mustn’t be sentimental, you can take it they are about to do something cruel.  And, if they add, we must be realistic, they mean they are going to make money out of it.” — Brigid Brophy
(Wow…. rare honesty, and a damn clear vision of reality, wouldn’t you say?…. How many times have you heard these ideas, either plainly, or in paraphrase, pass the lips of an elected official, just in the last week or two?… A lot of times, I’d wager….)

“The fundamental delusion of humanity is to suppose that I am here and you are there.” — Yasutani Roshi

I coming out…. of the parentheses, that is, not the closet, where I’ve never been….. The last one for this group had to be an excellent pearl, and, to my way of thinking, I nailed that in one…. This is a very deep statement, when you take the time to explore its depth; if not, it just sounds like a Zen koan, or some mystical obscurity designed to confuse reality. In truth, this is elemental, and a truth from which there is no real escape, no matter how strong our delusional belief……

We are all in this boat together, ffolkes; what I do is going to affect others, just as what they do will affect me…. We cannot exist in reality without this connection, and it would, indubitably, be a good thing if we would get a handle on that, and start living as if we planned to survive past the next century…. Otherwise, reality is going to step in, and destroy all our delusions at once, along with our existence as a species…. Sorry to be the bearer of the bad news, but the evidence is plain, even though nobody wants to talk about it…. SIGH….. Ah well, onward….
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Sometimes, introduction is superfluous…..

Gold Mouths Cry

Gold mouths cry with the green young
certainty of the bronze boy
remembering a thousand autumns
and how a hundred thousand leaves
came sliding down his shoulder blades
persuaded by his bronze heroic reason.
We ignore the coming doom of gold
and we are glad in this bright metal season.
Even the dead laugh among the goldenrod.

The bronze boy stands kneedeep in centuries,
and never grieves,
remembering a thousand autumns,
with sunlight of a thousand years upon his lips
and his eyes gone blind with leaves.

~~ Sylvia Plath ~~

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Yesterday was a wasted day, physically, due to overusing my body the day before, when I pretended I wasn’t disabled for a short, but, telling period of time. Today, I find that I am still, in spite of all my wishes to the contrary, old…. or, at least, older than I would like to be….. I’m missing my youthful strength, and the ability to do anything I asked of my body, without regard for the consequences for that entity…. I’m tougher now, of course; that’s what happens over time…. but, my body no longer can do what I ask without consequences, and those consequences seem to last longer than ever before; certainly much longer than is convenient….

Now that I’ve meandered through a totally unnecessary explanation of something that isn’t really important to anyone other than me, and perhaps my doctor, I can get around to sharing the whole reason for bringing this up at all…. Essentially, it’s all a lead-in, a hook, so to speak, to demonstrate the point of the exercise, which is to make a simple statement, to wit:  I feel lazy today….  There, I’ve said it, and you may chastise me as you see fit….. later. Right now, I’m using this little break in routine to make that statement, which fulfills all legal requirements for notifying y’all of my intention to go old-school…. Hell, the law says I could not say anything at all, but, I’m a nice guy, mostly, so, there you go….

So, here is another old-school pearl, of the random, harlequin style we all love so well…..

Pretty! in amber to observe the forms
Of hairs, or straws, or dirt, or grubs, or worms!
The things, we know, are neither rich nor rare,
But wonder how the devil they got there.

– Alexander Pope (1688-1744)  — Epistle to Dr. Arbuthnot, Prologue to the Satires, Line 169

“Nothing is so firmly believed as what we least know.” — Michael de Montaigne (1533-1592) — Essays, Book i, Chap. xxxi, Of Divine Ordinances

“To rebel against a powerful political, economic, religious, or social establishment is very dangerous and very few people do it, except, perhaps, as part of a mob. To rebel against the scientific establishment, however, is the easiest thing in the world, and anyone can do it and feel enormously brave, without risking as much as a hangnail. Thus, the vast majority, who believe in astrology and think that the planets have nothing better to do than form a code that will tell them whether tomorrow is a good day to close a business deal or not, become all the more excited and enthusiastic about the bilge when a group of astronomers denounces it.” — Isaac Asimov

“I used to sit on the banks with a raft and watch the water roll lazily by. One day I pushed my raft into the shallows of the water and found the water moved swifter than I thought, but my raft was actually a little rowboat. Then, after some time, I rowed my little boat into deeper water. There were great storms, mighty winds, tremendous waves, and sometimes I felt so alone. But I have noticed my little rowboat is now a mighty ship manned by my friends and loved ones, and beautiful calm seas, warm sunny days, and nights filled with comfortable dreams always double after a storm. Now, I could never go back and sit on the bank, in fact, I search for deeper water. Such is life when lived.” — B D Gulledge

“I have known a vast quantity of nonsense talked about bad men not looking you in the face.  Don’t trust that conventional idea. Dishonesty will stare honesty out of countenance, any day in the week, if there is anything to be got by it.” — Charles Dickens

“I see in the near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety of my country…. Corporations have been enthroned, an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money-power of the country will endeavor to prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until the wealth is aggregated in a few hands and the Republic is destroyed.  — Former US President Abraham Lincoln, Nov. 21, 1864 — letter to Col. William F. Elkins — printed in “The Lincoln Encyclopedia”, — ed. Archer H. Shaw, Macmillan, 1950, NY

“There’s a tendency today to absolve individuals from moral responsibility and treat them as victims of social circumstance.  You buy that, you pay with your soul.  It’s not men who limit women, it’s not straights who limit gays, it’s not whites who limit blacks.  What limits people is lack of character.  What limits people is that they don’t have the fucking nerve or imagination to star in their own movie, let alone direct it.” — Bernard Mickey Wrangle
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I’m feeling like the White Rabbit, so I’d best get on with this….. Well, if that won’t do it, I don’t know what will…. In that vein, and on that note, I will leave you to get on with the day…..  Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..

When I works, I works hard.
When I sits, I sits loose.
When I thinks, I falls asleep.

Which is Why….


Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

dozer3

Susceptible to diverse therapeutic models….

Ffolkes,
Oh, hello there…. come on in, but mind your head on the doorway there…. We’re doing a bit of remodeling, made necessary by an incident that took place late last night. There I was, sleeping peacefully, until about 3 AM, when all of a sudden, every piece of loose paper in the apartment burst into flame, WHOOSH, and I found myself frantically spraying water from the sink all over the place, alternated with beating out licks of flame on every surface…. A real nightmare, for sure, but without the benefit of being asleep….. It’s a real mess, but, I managed to get all the flames out before any of the walls or anything else got involved, so, I’m forced to assume the attitude of “it could be worse”. Which, of course, it very easily could have been, had it actually occurred…

No, that’s right, you heard me correctly…. I’m lying again, or, as we authors like to call it, being creative….. For the life of me, I couldn’t think of anything to start with today; the only thing I could come up with was this little bit of prevarication, which I justified as being acceptable only with the greatest reluctance…. I don’t really enjoy lying, as it challenges all I was taught as a boy by my father, but, how else can one make fiction, if not by a form of lying about reality? Any new story,  or any idea that hasn’t been already used, is, from one viewpoint, a lie, because it doesn’t exist in reality. Even though I know this, it doesn’t help to keep quiet those voices we have in our heads, put there by our parents in our infancy. I don’t know about y’all, but the voices in my head can be quite insistent, and annoying….

I know, I know, there are medications for that, but, these voices aren’t psychotic in nature; I actually heard them, utilized by my parental units, stating whatever advice or warning they  were trying to convey, at one point or another in my youth, so the medicines wouldn’t prevent them from making themselves known. Of course, most of what they say is a repeat of stuff we already know, so it’s not hard to just let it go by without getting worked up, or feeling any guilt, which, when dealing with stuff our parents gave us, is an occupational hazard…. I am SOOO glad I got rid of guilt in my life; I can’t tell you what a difference it has made….

Well, all of that is certainly….. well, it’s done. It’s words in a row, all of which are relatively connected to the ones nearby, which makes for a more pleasant appearance, as well as helping it to make whatever sense it may possess…. In this case, not a lot…. In fact, practically ALL of this intro section, thus far today, could be considered as sheer drivel, were it not for the need to keep some dignity on board. In looking back over what I’ve written so far, I can only hope that I haven’t gotten any of it on any new clothing items, and that nobody takes it seriously…. Even for me, this one is pretty loose, so, please, be careful handling it… it might not have a lot of sharp edges, but it WILL leave a stain….

“One cannot make up stories; one can only retell in new ways the stories one has already heard.” — Carolyn Heilbrun

Shall we Pearl?…..
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– Bother! said Pooh, as time unraveled around him.

Boy, don’t you just hate when that happens? I know I do…. and, these days, I feel like time is definitely becoming looser, and less likely to stay in its proper form. This may have to do with how close we are approaching our demise as a species, or with the constant barrage of insanity that continues to be displayed every day in the news…..

Some days it is impossible to keep up with all the stupidly insane, absolutely bonkers stuff that pours out of the mouths of pundits and politicos, preachers and police spokepersons (silly damn word….). It seems to me that government, as we know it, could do with a sense of humor…. Currently, there just isn’t anything funny about what they’re doing, in almost every arena, and I, for one, could do with a break from their implacable stupidity…..

I had intended to rant here, and to some extent, that will hold true…. I suppose the above paragraph could be counted as rantlike, but it needs some direction before it will come close to drawing any blood; I try to make sure it will at least cause a wound that will scar up, or what’s the point? However, at this point, there is just too much to choose from among the issues that are in the public eye right now…..

The Supremes are taking up the question of gaiety, and whatever they say will certainly cause consternation in one camp or another; the Feds are proving their complete lack of a sense of humor, by bringing charges (a euphemism for ‘persecuting’….) against the whistle blower who is hiding in Hong Kong, who had the audacity to tell the truth in public without their permission; civil wars are happening in the middle east again, and even the players can’t tell who’s who; another public circus is being played out in a Floridian court of justice (is that an oxymoron?…), where a paranoid racist murderer is being protected by the system….. I wouldn’t be surprised to see an article about penguins today, just to counterbalance all the disturbing shit being broadcast everywhere….

I can’t keep up with all of it; it’s getting crazy out there, ffolkes, and getting there faster all the time…. Any who… Since I can’t keep up, and can’t decide on what subject I should rant, we’ll try some cosmic Judo, and use my own weight against me…. We’ll go old school, and see what happens… These quotes are…. well, they are what they are, and they say whatever it is they’re going to say…. Deal with it, and enjoy….

“If you call a tail a leg, how many legs has a dog? Five? No, four. Calling a tail a leg doesn’t make it a leg.” — Abraham Lincoln

“Be patriotic – question authority.” — Bumper Sticker

“An ethical man is a Christian holding four aces.” — Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens) (1835-1910)

Come away, O human child!
To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand,
For the world’s more full of weeping than you can understand.

– William Butler Yeats, “The Stolen Child”

“I don’t know if God exists, but it would be better for His reputation if He didn’t.” — Jules Renard

That’s it, I give up…. Smart Bee is being a butthead today; this pearl took an inordinate amount of time to put together, for so little result…. but, it works, so we’ll get on with the rest of today’s effort, and consider it all a wash up to now….
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Between what I see and what I say
Between what I say and what I keep silent
Between what I keep silent and what I dream
Between what I dream and what I forget:
Poetry.

– Octavio Paz (1914-1998)

Honorable Request

Days, filled to a brim with fluff and time, pass
dimly into memory, bit by combative bit,
ever mournful, yet loud with life and sass,
only in dream do we meet, and dance, and flit.

Souls, spinning ’round in gleeful wonder, comply
as they must, never given a reason,
somberly proper, yet limber and quite spry,
dancing on to greet each bright new season.

Storms, angered by apathetic care, rage
proceeding into ministerial glare, unknown,
clothed in colors, purified solely with sage,
past an infinite future, already flown.

Life, plumbed to its depths and secrets, keeps
flowing with currents, strong and fairly found,
love stands, asking release, as it slowly weeps,
seeking refuge unasked, to stay honor bound.

~~ gigoid ~~

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Section one today turned out to be a bit strange, which, while not unexpected, did screw the format up a trifle. I don’t have a rant left in me, beyond what I’ve already done, and SB is being wonky about giving me what I need… So, I’m resorting to the archives, where I found this little religirant, not too long, and quite fitting, given what has gone before…. Plus, it’s done, and I don’t have to worry about being more creative (not that I lost a lot of sleep over that….)…. Any who, here is a pearl from mid-2012 sometime…..

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I don’t have an attitude problem–it’s supposed to be like this. — Smart Bee

I like this. It’s what I’ve said to any number of folks who have challenged me regarding my intransigence in the face of ignorant behavior. I am always tempted to add, “I am an American citizen, and it is not only my right, but my duty to challenge authority,”  mainly because I believe it to be absolutely true, thought not an attitude currently favored by most of society, more’s the pity…. We’d be a lot better off if more folks took their duties as citizens more seriously….

“I do not believe in the creed professed by the Jewish church, by the Roman church, by the Greek church, by the Turkish church, by the Protestant church, nor by any church that I know of. My own mind is my own church.” — Thomas Paine

All of our founding fathers were convinced that only an educated populace had a chance of maintaining the freedoms they secured for us. They knew firsthand how unscrupulous churches and governments, working hand in hand, had oppressed and subjugated the people for centuries, and they were determined that it should NOT happen here. So they engineered a system whereby each citizen has the opportunity, and the right, to a complete grounding in basic knowledge, in order that they could make informed decisions regarding the laws with which they would be living….

“The Church hates a thinker like a criminal hates the police.” — Smart Bee (So do politicians…)

For over 200 years now, the beloved ruling class and their hidden supporters, the prelates of the churches and synagogues, have been repeatedly and subtly attempting to undermine the purpose behind educating people, trying to limit the amount spent on education, or luring people into believing the nonsensical alternatives that religion offers in lieu of independence of thought, thus minimizing the effects of the education received outside their influence. They (the politicians and priests/preachers….) continuously bombard the public with lie after lie, until the lies are accepted as truth, just because there is nothing else offered. They then use those lies to further confuse the public as to what is really happening, and go about their business of stealing and grabbing power wherever they find the opportunity….

“I’m completely in favor of the separation of Church and State.   My idea  is that these two institutions screw us up enough on their own, so both of them together is certain death.” — George Carlin

So, my attitude is not the problem…. the problem is that not enough of us have this attitude, and the PTB have virtually no competition in their fight for our attention; there is nobody allowed on the political stage who is singing a different song than the one approved for public consumption by those who control such matters…. Hell, we’ll know we’re making progress if even one such person ever gets the chance to even speak…. meantime, all we can do is to have those of us who know our duty keep plugging away, calling them out for their lies, and making as much noise as we can, to try to draw some attention to those places where it isn’t appreciated, but needs it the most…..

“Every sensible man, every honest man, must hold the Christian sect in horror. But what shall we substitute in its place? you say. What? A ferocious animal has sucked the blood of my relatives. I tell you to rid yourselves of this beast and you ask me what you shall put in its place?” — Voltaire
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I’m exhausted…. That was the toughest Pearl in quite a while… I hope it reads well enough to pass muster; I’d hate to have to go back and start over…..   Well, it will do, I suppose… It may not be Ibsen, but it’s at least Art, or Frank, or Earnest…. especially the last. Plus, it contains no misspelled words, at least according to SpellChecker, and we all know how infallible that is….. Ah well, I have no pride left, so….  Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..

When I works, I works hard.
When I sits, I sits loose.
When I thinks, I falls asleep.

Which is Why….


Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

dozer3

Boring barefoot babies banging bongos….

Ffolkes,
Soft sounds of night whispered of fevered dreams and fear. Nothing stirred over the pale, moonlit landscape, save the lone figure of a man, walking purposefully across the sand, by the silent, dark water of the lake. Bearing down upon the building on the corner, he paused at the curb, to look up the facade, seeking one particular window.

High up, near the top, a single square was awash with light; upon spying the lit window, the man smiled, a small, satisfied, evil smile…. Without a word, he passed through the revolving door, into the building, now moving rapidly toward the bank of elevators along the back wall. He punched for the floor he wanted, then, as the doors slid closed, pulled a long, vicious looking knife from inside his coat…..

Okay, then, we’ll just leave that would-be assassin there in the elevator, and assume he either got the job done, or the woman he was sent to kill overcame his training, and turned him to her own side…. or, perhaps, blew him away with her .357 as he entered the room. Either way, you can write the rest of it yourself, so there’s no point in my doing it, is there? Nope….. Of course, that leaves me stranded again, barely into the third paragraph of the intro, with nothing more to say in my head. This is getting to be not only inconvenient, but frustrating for me….. I’m almost tempted to break out a Poohism, just to go with the flow…. in fact, I will…. Here…..

– Bother! said Pooh, nailing Eeyore’s tail onto Owl’s feathered fanny.

Well, that’s an interesting little aphorism, isn’t it? Kind of shows Pooh’s true colors, though, which may disappoint some of you…. You may as well get over it though, because we do a lot of that sort of balloon puncturing around here, whenever we can, especially regarding the Bear of No Brain, who has a very dark side, and occasionally needs to have people reminded of that side of him. Otherwise, people tend to start looking at Pooh as a harmless child’s toy, rather than the slick, sometimes evil, street smart, little bear that he is…. Here’s another example of just how bad he can be….

– Bother! said Pooh, as he sold crack in the school yard.

See? Now, is that the kind of bear you want your kids playing with? I didn’t think so…. His companions from the Hundred Acre Wood aren’t all that innocent, either…. for example:

– Bother! said Pooh, as Piglet covered his naked body in whipped cream.

I guess the two of them must have had fun with all that cream, because this one was next in line…..

– Bother! said Pooh, as he lay back and lit Piglet’s cigarette.

As you can see, the Little Bear isn’t such an Uncarved Block, is he?  Ah well, now that we’ve ruined a reputation or two, I think I can call time on this intro, and get on with today’s dive…. It is most likely a good idea, as I’ve already lost control of this somehow; heading off to dive can only save what’s left of our dignity…. Shall we Pearl?…..
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“Custom does often reason overrule and only serves for reason to the fool.” — John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester

This aphorism is one that I think most people would accept as true, at least part of the time. It also points up what I see as a basic flaw in human nature, a characteristic that everyone possesses, and few overmaster. It has to do with our core beliefs, and the attitude we assume as our method of perception, the orientation of our world-view, as it were. We all perceive what is out there in the universe, but we are not capable, at this time, of understanding, or even noting, all that is there to be perceived, as we are limited to what we can see, hear, feel, touch, taste, or deduce, in our immediate vicinity…. We don’t yet know how to include the input of anything not in our physical presence, other than vicariously (via TV, radio, books, etc…..).

We do, however perceive what we are near, and what we do with those perceptions is what determines how the events of our lives will proceed. What is more, each one of us perceives all of this IN A DIFFERENT WAY…..  Two people can look at the same article, or event, and see two entirely different things; just ask them….. We use the same senses, the same KIND of brains to process the data, at the same time to observe the same event, yet the interpretation of those events will vary, by as many degrees as there are people perceiving them. This unique ability, to process data in a completely new and different way from anyone else’s method, is, as might be guessed, both a blessing, and a curse….. It is the latter that concerns me today…..

In order to coexist in the same place and time, people have learned to accept certain perceptions as being identical, for the purposes of communication, e.g., everyone knows what “fire” is, and knows not to touch it barehanded…. (Note: in a way, this blog is all about the process of such communications…. we explore the reality that is consensual, that we all agree to deal with as being the same for all of us…..) This is the blessing it gives, the opportunity to increase understanding, to allow people to work in tandem, making both much more capable, making two more than just one plus one….. This is a very useful tool in the real world, and has helped our species achieve the degree of civilization we now enjoy….

But, the other side of this characteristic has an equal part in our destiny, and may in fact be the more important of the two, in the ultimate sense….. You see, we are all herd animals, and desire the approval and company of our peers; without it, we suffer, much more than we even know. It is not “human” to remain alone too long…. Oh, there is nothing wrong with solitude, and much great thought is achieved when one is not distracted by others…..

On the other hand, a human who is alone for too long becomes a pale imitation of his/her true self, without the presence of other minds to test his/her theories, to discuss and share their feelings and accomplishments, to vent their frustrations, to experience love….. Without these things, our spirits become small, and lose their moral compass, leaving us adrift in a reality that seems dark, and dangerous….

This dependence on custom (which I define as the total construct of human society, the set of rules and regulations, all unwritten, by which all of us shape our behavior in respect to each other…..) is so strong that, as the aphorism states, one becomes willing to set reason aside, in order to keep and maintain our feeling of having a place in society. We will assume whatever mask that society demands, at times, in order to not have to wear a mask of our own devising, one that we do not find comfortable…. This is the curse of which I spoke….

You see, there are a number of people who have no compunctions whatsoever in using this human characteristic to their own ends….. They don’t believe in any of the crap they spew, but will say or do anything to make sure that others do, because this is how they control the general populace… They spread their lies, fast and often, until they are believed….

These lies promulgate fear amongst the uneducated and timid, who then demand that “something be done!” by those in charge…. which is exactly what those people wanted, for they can now proceed to further fan the flames of fear, while surreptitiously looting the public treasury to make it seem as if they are doing something constructive…. “Hey, they’re stealing our oil! Let’s spend a few billion to bomb the crap out of them so we can keep driving SUV’s!, with great cup holders!”

Oh well, I guess that’s all the rant I’ve got in me today…. It’s kind of mild I know, but I was trying to be scholarly, rather than controversial and accusatory…. I think I’ve succeeded in that, but, it doesn’t quite give the same thrill and/or release as a good, nasty rant, with some great name-calling… Well, I can always call them assholes, because, hey, it fits, and it’s easy to type…. Any who, I’ll stop now, right on the edge of illumination, and allow the Gentle Reader to follow the train of my thought to its obvious conclusion…. For those too busy, or too lazy to do so, I’ll summarize….

Don’t listen to what anyone else says, not about YOUR perceptions. And, for sure, kick the asses of anyone who tries to convince you of their integrity in an elected capacity, or any position of authority…. A lot of people, on every level of society, are just trying to control you for their own purposes, and deserve any ass-kicking that comes their way….

Be like a cat…. cats don’t give a SHIT what anybody thinks, they just are….. No apologies, no fuss, just leave me alone, because I’m busy being a cat….. This is good advice, so, listen up, I’m trying to do you a favor…..   :lol:

“We need very strong ears to hear ourselves judged frankly, and because there are few who can endure frank criticism without being stung by it, those who venture to criticize us perform a remarkable act of friendship, for to undertake to wound or offend a man for his own good is to have a healthy love for him.” — Michel Eyquem de Montaigne _Essays_, bk. III, ch. 11 [1595]
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This poem has an odd provenance…. I first wrote it, in the form of a prose paragraph, as the opening of a Pearl from sometime late in 2011, apparently…. I was looking for an old pearl to use, when I noticed that a paragraph I was reading was actually a poem, with no changes in words, or punctuation, necessary; all it needed was to place each verse in its proper position in each stanza…. It’s actually one of my favorite pieces, now that I see what it really is… I didn’t realize it when I wrote it, only when I re-read it last night…. Serendipity strikes again!….  As on every day this month, this is for the April National Poetry Writing Month Challenge, with the updates to be found here:  http://www.napowrimo.net/ (I still don’t know if I’m doing this right, but, oh well….)

Stray Cats

The veils that billow and fold
between dreams and reality
 may sometimes part,
showing the visions of one to the other,
blending, bleeding as one,
only to bring us up short,
closely jammed against immovable fate.

Still, we keep our watch,
seeking to find the vision
 that brings with it the mark of reality’s regard,
a humble mind, and a compassionate heart.

Events of broad impact draw us away again,
distracting with shiny glitter and tinny music,
leaving our feelings raw and bruised,
the victim of universal disregard.

Now, in the twilight of years, the music is fading,
and the glitter has all gone….
yet the memory of visions remains sharp and clear,
melancholy reminders of reality’s promises,
unkept…..

~~gigoid~~

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“As far as we can discern, the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light of meaning in the darkness of mere being.” — C. G. Jung

Sadie, the cat, will be going to my daughter’s house to live today, and I wanted to spend some extra time with her, so it’s a good thing I’m making good time with this Pearl…. with her help…. Just in case the sound of the coffee brewing doesn’t wake me up, on each of the past five mornings, Sadie has decided to help get me up….

First, when the machine starts to make noises indicating it is turning on, she begins clawing at the underside of the bed, then, when I say her name to get her to stop, she jumps up on the bed, right by my face, and meows loudly in my ear…. She then jumps away as if I had yelled at her, (I didn’t…)  but immediately stops and looks back to make sure I’m looking at her….

If I’m not yet focused enough to do that, she jumps down to the floor, then back up by my face to repeat her complaint…. If I am looking at her, she meows again, and comes back to get petted…. A very persistent alarm clock, she is…. She may not have provided my existence with meaning, but she has certainly added a great deal of charm and love…. I’ll miss her, but, fortunately, can visit her any time….

Any who, since I ranted to long and obscure purpose above, I’ll go with an old-school pearl for the closing section today….. I really do like the quote above from Carl, so, be assured, the pearls I pick today will have some sort of connection to this idea, tenuous though it may be…. Enjoy!…..

He spoke in both simile and metaphor…
the words a bubbling champagne
tinged with the colors of the sunset.

“‘T is the sunset of life gives me mystical lore,
and coming events cast their shadows before.”

– Thomas Campbell (1777-1844) — Lochiel’s Warning

“It’s a poor workman who blames his tools.” — Smart Bee (so old a piece of wisdom, nobody knows who said it first…..)
(This is especially true of philosophers….  :roll:   )

“Character is like a tree and reputation like its shadow. The shadow is what we think of it; the tree is the real thing.” — Abraham Lincoln

“A fair exterior is a silent recommendation.” — Publius Syrus (42 BC) — Maxim 267

“I have not loved the world, nor the world me.” — Lord Byron (1788-1824) — Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage, Canto iii, Stanza 113

“Happiness begins with a clear understanding of one principle. Some things are within your control. And some things are not.” — Epictetus

“Any fool can know. The point is to understand.” — Albert Einstein
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All things considered, it went well; now, let’s see how it reads….. Actually, I think I’m okay with this…. It flowed fairly well, and I don’t think I said anything to overly offend anyone, unless they are inclined to take things personally, which MY readers would never do…. With that said, it’s Saturday, and I’m off into the BBR to play…..  Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..

When I works, I works hard.
When I sits, I sits loose.
When I thinks, I falls asleep.

Which is Why….


Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

dozer3

Ten paces south from the gargoyle….

Ffolkes,
I was warned, but I didn’t listen. Of course, I never believed it could actually happen, not to me….. Like every other fool in history, the admonition of my peers was lost on me, filled as I was to the brim with confidence, and pride in my skill. And, like every other fool in history, I failed, badly….. What is it about wet paint that makes men want to touch it, to find out if it is actually wet? What is it about a “Keep off the Grass” sign that makes our toes itch for the feel of the lawn? Why does a door that says, “No Admittance” make us want to see what is behind it?….. SIGH….. We’re all a bunch of little kids at heart, aren’t we?…. Just trying to find out what the world is made of, and getting told to watch our step…..

Hmm…. I’m not sure where that paragraph came from, nor am I certain at all of where it intended to get to, so, in retrospect, it’s probably just as well that I leave it right there, and not get into any further exploration of that train of thought. It sort of wanders around up there, spinning some light magic, but then fades away, as if unconvinced of its own purpose…. And there I go again, talking about my writing as if it had a will of its own…. Regardless of how out of control this blog may seem to be, the words don’t write themselves, but, I tend to get carried away with my anthropomorphism at times, so, please, bear with me….

Now where shall we go? I’m faced this morning with a totally blank Pearl template…. the only thing I had written ahead is the ending line. Although this is a good thing, it does leave me in fear, as any author would be, faced with such a bright, shiny vast plain of whiteness, just begging to be filled with words of wit and magic, while I cower in abject trepidation at the sheer folly of my ambition, and pray to my muse for salvation….. Since my muse seems to be mad at me again, I could have a long wait….

We’ve got trouble, ffolkes, right here in River City…. It starts with T, and ends with ubble, that’s Trouble, and we’ve got it right here. (Can you hear the trombones?) Once again, the intro section has gotten away from me, and wandered off into areas of my head that could conceivably alter the course of history, should they be brought into the light of day. Since the alterations may or may not be such that they would help, it would probably be best to just give up again, and get on with today’s Pearl. I’m going to have to rely solely on Smart Bee to pull this off, and hope that there are a number of good pearls to get me going…. Only one way to find out, I suppose, so…. Shall we Pearl?…..

“Everyone knows that dragons don’t exist.  But while this simplistic formulation may satisfy the layman, it does not suffice for the scientific mind. The School of Higher Neantical Nillity is in fact wholly unconcerned with what does exist.  Indeed, the banality of existence has been so amply demonstrated, there is no need for us to discuss it any further here.  The brilliant Cerebron, attacking the problem analytically, discovered three distinct kinds of dragon: the mythical, the chimerical, and the purely hypothetical.  They were all, one might say, nonexistent, but each nonexisted in an entirely different way …” — Stanislaw Lem, Cyberiad

Now, that sounds like it belongs here, doesn’t it?…. In a way, you COULD say that this blog nonexists in an entirely different way…..
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As is the case in many instances, when faced with a literary conundrum in the morning, I’m resorting to default, and firing up an old school pearl for your perusal and edification (if that can ever be said to be true of pearls….)…. The following seven pearls were, of course, chosen at random, and without conscious volition, but with an eventual destination in mind…. Today, we are fortunate to note that the destination is also random, as is the conclusion to which you will be led, willy-nilly…. That conclusion is, naturally, left as an exercise for the Gentle Reader…..

“I am not young enough to know everything.” — Oscar Wilde (1854-1900)

“Democracy is based on the assumption that a million men are wiser than one  man. How’s that again?  I missed something.” — Robert A. Heinlein

“A heretic is a man who sees with his own eyes.” — Gotthold Ephraim Lessing

If a cat spoke, it would say things like “Hey, I don’t see a problem here.” — Smart Bee

“Some people think only intellect counts:  knowing how to solve problems, knowing how to get by, knowing how to identify an advantage and seize it.  But the functions of intellect are insufficient without courage, love, friendship, compassion and empathy.” — Dean Koontz

“Am I not destroying my enemies when I make friends of them?” — Abraham Lincoln

“Do your Duty.  Honor the Truth.  Respect Life.  Share your Love.” ~~ Axiom #7, Peruaosophy

I know, I’m a strange puppy…. If it helps, I mean well….    :-)
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This is a poem I’ve used before…. I like it a lot, and it fits my mood, somehow…. Enjoy!

Shui Tiao Ko Tou

Will a moon so bright ever arise again?
Drink a cupful of wine and ask of the sky.
I don’t know where the palace gate of heaven is,
Or even the year in which tonight slips by.
I want to return riding the whirl-wind! But I
Feel afraid that this heaven of jasper and jade
Lets in the cold, its palaces rear so high.
I shall get up and dance with my own shadow.
From life endured among men how far a cry!

Round the red pavilion
Slanting through the lattices
Onto every wakeful eye,
Moon, why should you bear a grudge, O why
Insist in time of separation so th fill the sky?
Men know joy and sorow, parting and reunion;
The moon lacks lustre, brightly shines; is al, is less.
Perfection was never easily come by.
Though miles apart, could men but live for ever
Dreaming they shared this moonlight endlessly!

Su Tung-p’o
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The issue of gun control is currently a HOT BUTTON issue for a lot of people in this country…. At least, it is for those who enjoy over-reacting to all the violence reported in the news….. They seem to forget that there are now over 7 billion people on this planet, with more crowding on every second, and the increased violence we are seeing is a natural result of overpopulation combined with stupidity, both of which exist in ample supply in our society….

The following is a piece I wrote not long after one of the school shootings in 2012, which, to my mind, pretty well summarizes my objections to the foolish and unwarranted fear that has prompted the idiotic notion of repealing the Second Amendment altogether…. Here is my response to that notion….

“Firearms stand next in importance to the Constitution itself. They are the American people’s liberty teeth and keystone under independence…  From the hour the Pilgrims landed, to the present day, events, occurrences, and tendencies prove that to ensure peace, security, and happiness, the rifle and pistol are equally indispensable….  The very atmosphere of firearms every- where restrains evil interference – they deserve a place of honor with all that’s good.” — George Washington (bogus?)(who cares? I don’t, it doesn’t make it any less true if it was said by someone else…..)

I am constantly hearing people these days spouting off about gun control, and how guns should be outlawed. This is a viewpoint that I have never understood, because it makes a totally unwarranted assumption (more than one actually, but one that is most important….), i.e., guns cause violent behavior, and if people couldn’t legally own them, violence would stop.

This is naive, and unreasonable, given that there is absolutely no evidence to support such a contention. There is no evidence whatsoever that violence is NOT part of human nature; this is a psychological FACT, not subject to debate. People have violent tendencies, and violence is the primary response of a great many people who have never learned how to use their reason to control their emotions.

Though I’ve never owned or carried a gun, I am a firm believer in the Second Amendment to the US Constitution, in its most literal sense. Without the right to bear arms in our own defense, we, as citizens, would be at the mercy of whomever was in office at the time, and would have no recourse at all to any redress of grievance against those officials, since they could not be forced to comply with law.

I do NOT trust any elected official to act in MY best interests; human nature also decrees that they will act in their OWN interests first, with no compulsion to even consider anything else. Making it a law that only police and government lackeys could legally be armed is a sure way to guarantee that the average citizen would be at the mercy of these so-called leaders, mercy being a quality that they have never heretofore demonstrated in any fashion.

As I said, I don’t own or carry guns, yet. I’ve trained myself to be dangerous without the use of them, and feel no fear that I cannot deal with an armed man to my benefit; this is simply because it is the person holding the gun that is the danger, not the gun itself. Speed, power, and accuracy are the key elements to controlling a violent situation, along with some forethought and preparation, and the ability to keep a clear mind when under duress.

When a person is holding a gun, they feel ten feet tall and invincible, but they remain human, and humans can be controlled with superior strategy and tactics. It does no good to hold a gun, when the target won’t sit still, or even remain visible….. and in these cases, that sense of invulnerability becomes a liability to the gun-wielder.

However, most Americans do not have this sort of skill set, nor the state of mind that makes it work. In the hands of a skilled warrior, a gun becomes a dangerous weapon indeed, for it will be used to achieve the warrior’s goals, as any weapon would, and not employed to merely bully others into doing what is desired, which is the usual use of these kinds of weapons in the hands of the ignorant and deceitful. And politicians, by the very nature of their sociopathy, do get rather deceitful in the pursuit of their self-centered ends. The desire to be in public office, to me, is a sure sign of a sick mind, as a healthy one has no need to assume power over others, being content to be in control of themselves.

At this point in the narrative, I got a bit sarcastic, caustically so, directed at those shrill advocates of this kind of legal oppression, laws that attempt to legislate morality,  so I’ve stopped it here to avoid offending anyone unduly. I agree with the need to tighten the regulations regarding assault weapons, but not as far as is wanted by the fear-mongers.

I also think it is a good idea to keep guns out of the hands of children, and people who have demonstrated the lack of emotional control needed by a free citizen of this country, to own and use a gun appropriately, i.e. the mentally ill, who are characterized by a lack of impulse control…. Not a good characteristic for someone with a gun in their hands….

But, once again, I must caution people to examine any laws that do get passed closely, for going farther than intended, which the people in charge have a tendency to do, to slip stuff by the public….

I’ll try to wake up your precautionary instincts by asking this….. If the insane are not to be allowed full rights as a citizen, who is it that gets to decide who is insane?  The same issues of trust are present, or absent, in that idea, as in the assumption that the Beloved Ruling Class will act in our best interests….. They can be trusted to act in their own interests first, and we all would do well to keep that in mind…..

“There are many here among us who feel that life is but a joke.” — Bob Dylan
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There are many here among us who are CERTAIN that life is but a joke, Bob, and today’s effort is simply further evidence in support of that conviction…. But, today’s Pearl is done, so, who cares? Not me….. Having cheated a bit, by reprinting a couple of items, I’ve got some time to kill…. But, rather than fill it by tormenting y’all any further, I’ll be a nice little blogger, and leave you in peace….

Happy Valentine’s Day, ffolkes….

May love and joy light your way,
and keep you warm this winter’s day….

Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

dozer3