In the course of normal events, we would have no real interest in finishing sentences, unless they are of the type given on conviction of a pundit for chicanery…. Since what takes place here on a regular, daily basis couldn’t ever be described as normal, or even in the same universe as normal, that has never caused us any particular difficulties…. until now…. What’s so different about today? Well, I’ll tell ya….
Not a damn thing I can see…. It’s just another in a long series of non-sequitur beginnings to these Pearls, applied, as always, with a certain degree of reluctance, lest anyone notice it isn’t exactly legal…. How? Well, how the hell would I know? Am I a legislator, or a lawyer, who would give half a shit about the law? No, I’m not, so quit asking so damn many questions…. It’s plainly written on the door outside when the lawyers will be in their offices, so stop bothering me with all this extraneous BS, okay?….
Sorry, I don’t mean to be grumpy…. I’m a bit foggy today, and the coffee doesn’t seem to be cutting through it quite so efficiently as usual….. Hence this odd, stop & start, just plain weird beginning to what otherwise would be an excellent day…. My business in the BBR yesterday went well, (I found a doctor that not only listened to me, but actually was able to understand me without having to bring a dictionary with them), and my pain today isn’t too bad so far…. Life is good….
Such an auspicious start to the day makes me nervous, as you may know, because it CAN mean our old friend, Murphy, has something delightful planned for me later on…. I’ve had far too many days in my life like this to feel completely comfortable when things go so smoothly; Reality has exploded on me enough times to make me wary of trusting it, particularly when it tries to convince me it resembles a baby’s bottom, and that I can trust things will go smoothly…. I’m just a little too old to fall for that one…. Hence, my skittishness, and this broken, misbegotten, sorry excuse for an intro…. Remember, all you can do, is all you can do…. At this point, this is all I can do….
That being the case, it’s probably best if we just get on with it….. I’ll stop trying to rescue this, and y’all can get rid of any trash you accumulated on the, no doubt, longer-than-necessary time spent in getting to this point, while we wait for the pilot to finish moving the plane into the takeoff position…. Oh, didn’t I tell you? Today, we’re flying off to a previously uncharted, incredibly rich, bed of oysters I found, somewhere out in the South Pacific…. I’m going to dive there today, to try to find some new and exciting pearls, while y’all hang out on the nearby resort island, sipping daiquiris until I’m done, okay? Sounds like a plan to me…..
Shall we Pearl?….
The question was once put to him, how we ought to behave to our friends; and the answer he gave was, “As we should wish our friends to behave to us.” — Diogenes Laertius (c. 200 AD) — Aristotle, xi
Recently, there have been some articles in the news regarding a huge business merger, one so bit it is being examined for monopoly and trust issues by the government agency that has oversight in that arena…. A large corporation, Comcast, was approved to purchase, and merge with, another very large communication corporation, Time-Warner, in a deal that gives them control of about 35% of the entire cable market, including the provision of internet access to users…. This same company now wants to make a deal with another large company in the entertainment field, a deal which would improve the bottom line for both, but, at the same time, indicates that the consumer is going to suffer the indignity of price fixing, and reduction of net neutrality, as the company explores its new ability to discriminate in the way it provides access, a perk awarded by the courts….
It’s a complex legal issue, and one that is guaranteed to put any of the public who try to pay attention right to sleep in their chairs…. deliberately, because these companies don’t really WANT the public to know what they’re up to, not until it is “fait accompli”, and nothing can be done to change it. Sadly enough, it’s also so boring and complex, I don’t feel up to breaking it down enough for exploration today, nor do I feel up to the task of pointing out the need to stop things like this from happening, or we won’t have our free internet to play with anymore….
Since I DON’T feel up to ranting today, (my level of curmudgeonry is kinda low…… plenty of outrage, but not much angst, and definitely not enough clarity of mind….), this will have to revert to an old-school format, or nothing…. Since that isn’t an option any more, (we already have SOMETHING, thus, ’tis impossible to have nothing….), I’m going to go for a dive, and see what I can find…. wish me luck, y’all…
“There is an enormous oyster here with its shell tightly closed. Interesting. Interesting. There seems to be something written on the underside of the oyster.”….. — Smart Bee
“It is better to copulate than never.” — Lazarus Long
“As long as you live, keep learning how to live.” — Seneca
“The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing. One cannot help but be in awe when he contemplates the mysteries of eternity, of life, of the marvelous structure of reality. It is enough if one tries merely to comprehend a little of this mystery every day. Never lose a holy curiosity.” — Albert Einstein
“Humankind cannot stand very much reality.” — T.S. Eliot
Dionysus the Elder, being asked whether he was at leisure, he replied, “God forbid that it should ever befall me!” — Plutarch (46-120 AD) — Dionysus
“C is for cookie, it’s good enough for me; oh cookie cookie cookie starts with C.” — Cookie Monster
There…. If THAT doesn’t tickle your fancy, I don’t have one…..
This poem is one of my personal favorites, which is a big part of why it is being used here, again…. Besides, how can one lose, with poetry such as this in their head, and thus, in their spirit?…. That’s correct…. in that case, one cannot lose….
Hence Burgundy, Claret, and Port,
Away with old Hock and madeira,
Too earthly ye are for my sport;
There’s a beverage brighter and clearer.
Instead of a pitiful rummer,
My wine overbrims a whole summer;
My bowl is the sky,
And I drink at my eye,
Till I feel in the brain
A Delphian pain –
Then follow, my Caius! then follow:
On the green of the hill
We will drink our fill
Of golden sunshine,
Till our brains intertwine
With the glory and grace of Apollo!
God of the Meridian,
And of the East and West,
To thee my soul is flown,
And my body is earthward press’d. –
It is an awful mission,
A terrible division;
And leaves a gulph austere
To be fill’d with worldly fear.
Aye, when the soul is fled
To high above our head,
Affrighted do we gaze
After its airy maze,
As doth a mother wild,
When her young infant child
Is in an eagle’s claws –
And is not this the cause
Of madness? – God of Song,
Thou bearest me along
Through sights I scarce can bear:
O let me, let me share
With the hot lyre and thee,
The staid Philosophy.
Temper my lonely hours,
And let me see thy bowers
~~ John Keats ~~
I’ve been cheating a lot lately…. That, I imagine, is partly a function of having written so much in the last three years or so…. I’ve got too much in my head every day to get ALL of it down on the screen to share, and some mornings, such as today, my brain doesn’t want to cooperate with the program, by exerting itself enough to rant…. I guess I’m getting mellow in my old age, eh?……
Nah, not really much chance of THAT happening…. but, I AM still plenty lazy, (it’s all part and parcel of being smarter than the average bear, you know? We’re always looking for an easier way to do stuff…..)….. which I don’t mind a bit, as long as I can still get done all I wish to do…. which I do, having decided long ago that whatever I did was okay by me…. It’s really a damn good policy, you ought to try it…..
Any who…. here is a pretty good religirant, from a couple of years ago, in December, a month that, apparently, I spent writing some pretty decent rants…. Enjoy!…..
“Heaven goes by favor. If it went by merit, you would stay out and your dog would go in.” — Mark Twain
As is his stock in trade, Mr. Twain once again gives humanity a solid poke in the ribs, in a humorous, even comfortable way that makes us want to laugh about our all-too-human foibles, instead of crying, which would really be more appropriate. In his assessment of both the character of most men, and most dogs, he is absolutely correct, and shows in one simple, sardonic phrase, just how ugly people can be. In fact, I can honestly say that, in my life, I have met many more dogs who deserve to go to Heaven, than I have men or women. Of course, I wouldn’t wish that on any dog, but, you know what I mean. Dogs are better ffolkes than most folks, in the world I see around me….
This, naturally, leads me to a perfect jump-off point for a religirant…. “Heaven goes by favor” This is all too accurate; in order to get into the club, one has to meet a certain standard, that of faith. Of course that standard is pretty easy to meet, as all it requires is a verbal commitment ( accompanied, I suppose by a heart-felt commitment….) that one believes in JC, or Mohammed, or Buddha, or whomever, and will try to follow their teachings. No pressure to actually do so, just commit to it, and you’re in. Or, go ahead and live your life walking the path of evil, then convert on the deathbed, and you’re in…. according to their rules…. Or, in other words, it’s all who you know…..
“An ancient buddha said, Mountains are mountains; waters are waters. These words do not mean mountains are mountains; they mean mountains are mountains.” — Dogen
I’ve recently been reading an author whose work I had read in my youth, when I was devouring science fiction on a daily basis. Samuel R. Delany wrote a number of powerful novels, as well as shorter works. The most recent I read, Babel-17, uses the structure and meaning of words in language as the basis for the plot.
In the book, he relates how important perception is to meaning, and how the way we use language can actually work to program the brain, just like the organic computer it is. What struck me is how the process he describes, which is what can be observed in people, if you look closely, shows just how powerful a tool language can be, when used in full consciousness of what it means, and what it CAN do…..
People base their entire existence on a few words, and what those words mean to them. If someone else (say, a preacher?) is able to influence the person’s choice of the words that have that power, then that person becomes the willing slave of whomever supplies him with the words.
This is a subtle process, that operates below the level of consciousness that most folks are aware of; they don’t realize how they are being manipulated by the very words they use, into thinking along certain lines, and in certain ways, all of which benefit the manipulator in some way, much more than they do the one whose thoughts are being channeled.
“This is Daddy’s bedtime secret for today: Man is born broken. He lives by mending. The grace of God is glue.” — Eugene O’Neill
Mr. O’Neill was a decent playwright, but as a philosopher, he sucked, plain and simple. This is merely a parroting of the basic Christian dogma, and, as such, stands as a perfect example of how religious institutions tend to lie to their constituents….. I can say this because I have my own secret for today: Man is NOT born broken….. He is born as a blank slate; what is written upon that slate is only what he is taught to write, by other men. Since the first premise is false, the rest of the train of thought thus becomes irrelevant….You can easily see where it is just an attempt to get people to accept the untruths, and keep their patterns of thought within the boundaries drawn by dogma….
Sorry if such an idea is offensive, but, I don’t need to be “born again”, I did just fine the first time. I’m not broken. I’m not guilty of original sin, any more than is anyone else. That single concept, original sin, has been the most destructive idea Man has come up with in all of our long history, and, in my less-than-humble opinion, is therefore responsible for virtually ALL of the torture, warfare, and egregiously evil events perpetrated by religious fervor, of the last 3000 years.
I kid you not…. That simple lie, that we are all, somehow, for some insane, neurotic reason, born inherently sinful, and guilty of something, is pure hogwash, and is the most blatant falsehood to have been thought up, and perpetrated upon the rest of mankind, EVER!
What a ridiculous idea! To think that a newborn, of any species, should bear the guilt for an action performed before their birth, is just plain stupid, and self-serving. Of course, this doesn’t mention, that the act we are supposedly guilty of, is the acquisition of knowledge, an act which, to me, NOT something for which we should be punished, but rather deserve to be rewarded. Of course, knowledge is its own reward, so that really doesn’t matter, either….
But, in order to gain control over others, preachers have, since the beginning of history, tried to convince the rest of us that they are the only ones who have the right answer, all based on a bald-faced lie, and a false assumption….. And, since a large percentage of mankind is too lazy to think for themselves, or to risk thinking independently of others, THEY FALL FOR IT! It almost makes me ashamed to be human, to be truthful….
But, we have dogs as our companions, and they love us, so we must not be ALL bad…. right? Right…. so, just follow your dog’s example, and just BE moral, don’t try to follow what others may tell you is moral. You’ll do a lot better, in life, and when it counts, after life…..
“Go back. Everything you need to know is in the first seven axioms.” ~~ Peruaosophy, Axiom #8, by gigoid
Today’s Pearl came together in a very odd way, but, it got done, so, I’m good with that…. Comfortable or not, it’s reasonably well written, and has some fairly decent thinking included, if not exactly overloaded with complete coherency…. So be it….. See you 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,
I just sits.
gigoid the dubious