we ought to know a little about everything.”
~~ Blaise Pascal ~~
Ah, yes! I love the smell of artificial, imitation, deep-fried ANYTHING! I AM, after all, a trained consumer….
Okay, no ranting in the intro, bozoid one. Hie, there, ffolkes. In case it isn’t clear by now, I’m in a Zippy mood. While not a frequent occurrence, we can never tell quite what that will mean, in the final analysis; I’ve had it turn out quite well, at times; other times, I wake up in another state, (e.g., Wisconsin, or Sinaloa, in Mexico…. which was, admittedly, way better than Wisconsin….), naked, hung over, with no idea where I’ve been, how I got there, what I’ve been consuming (the masters won’t like that!…. gotta consume our quota!…), or with whom, or what, I’ve been consorting…. Not the most pleasant mornings, let me tell ya…. Even if nothing else, the stench was tremendous!….
Ah well, so much for tales of my misspent youth; I’m sure we all have a story or two like that to tell, right? No? Oh. Oh, well, I guess it’s all of a piece, what with the state of Reality these days. I must say, it’s looking a bit grim out there in the BBR, ffolkes, and, you know Zippy. He’s a hard one to bring down into a depression, what with his lack of any connections whatsoever to the same reality, for more than five minutes…. I sure wish I could do that! Must be nice to be able to shift from one to another, at the drop of a cliche… Probably plays hell with one’s shoes, though…. And, the spit-bombs! Well! They must drive him, oh, right…. nobody can drive Zippy crazy; he’s been there for years….
Okay, I think that’s most likely enough of that. I’m no Bill Griffith, for sure, though he’s one of my cartoonist heroes…. His connection to the state of Weird is like an internet T-1 connection; a direct line, with all the bandwidth needed, to the entire world of Weird, with lifetime passes to the neighboring worlds of Strange, and Odd…. Truth, in the most incredibly beautiful strange clothing, just flows out of his brain, seemingly without end, saturated in metaphor, truly a coat of many colors, brought to us in technicolor, in no particular order discernible by the mind of Man….
Don’t be surprised if Zippy pops up further down the page today, either. I like to let him have his fun while he’s in charge; it makes him so happy to be able to play with the tri-cornered leadership hat, with its ribbons, and peacock feathers proudly displayed. Plus, he’s always a better tipper when he gets to wear the hat; one time he gave the tarbender a $100 dollar bill, just for saying “hi” to him…. Of course, it was counterfeit, but, all his money is, so nobody minds…. He never guesses, and it’s no sweat for the help to humor him….
Alright, that’s it. I’m out of Zippyisms, for the moment, at least…. I think we’d probably be heading off to the oyster beds now, before this gets away from me, turning into another marathon opening, tiring everyone out before we even get to the video…. Yes, I think that will be the best idea…. In fact, let’s just do that, right NOW….
Shall we Pearl?
~~Mark Twain ~~
True to my word, today’s video will be none other than our pal Zippy’s personal page on You Tube. The first link you see is to the page listing all the great places to find Zippy on You Tube. The second link, and the embedded player, are to Episode One of the Zippy Tales, by Zippy’s author, Bill Griffith himself…. Enjoy, ffolkes, it doesn’t get any stranger than this…..
Zippy the Pinhead
by Bill Griffith
When the pope noticed that the lawyer had a larger mansion,
he questioned Saint Peter about the allocation of rewards.
The justification was “Well, we’ve had 265 popes up here,
but this is the FIRST lawyer!”
~~ True Story ~~
As might be guessed from the opening portion of today’s ranting section, we will not be maintaining any of our customary sobriety; I’m not in the mood for sobriety. Even talking about popes or lawyers would be too much for me, so, we’ll go with something from the archives, a discussion of a less intense nature than our usual bill of faire in this part of the Pearl. Silly, yet completely serious at the same time; I’m not sure what I was thinking, but, it seems to work… I’ve cleaned it up a little, to get rid of those words getting in the way of the meaning, or cluttering up perfectly good sentences, formerly a large part of my writing style…. Otherwise, all same same….
You fight a war by exceptional moves;
But you win the world by letting alone,
How do I know that this is so?
By what is within me!
The more taboo and inhibitions there are in the world,
The poorer the people become.
The sharper the weapons the people posses,
The greater confusion reigns in the realm.
The more clever and crafty the men,
The oftener strange things happen.
The more articulate the laws and ordinances,
The more robbers and thieves arise.”
~~ Tao Teh Ching, #57 ~~
This is obvious. But don’t look at it too carefully, or it becomes unobvious, until you look at it for a long time, when it becomes obvious again. –Smart Bee
The above two pearls were sent to me by Murphy; obviously, I have to write about them. How do I know he sent them? Well, when I was cruising my dB of quotes, the excerpt from the Tao Teh Ching was the very first quote that came into view after opening the program. I debated a discussion, as it is one of the most important of the lessons in that book. But, I decided to go on, to find something a bit more amenable….
I hit the key to bring up the next quote, only to see the ‘sort-of-but-not-quite-zen-koan’ from Smart Bee, come into view….. Obviously, at least, to me, the two were from Murphy, hence their presence here for me to comment upon….. although I don’t know why I should, since Murphy is such an ass. But, knowing him all too well, if I don’t, I’ll pay for it, so…. here we go…
Each of the assertions in the above quote from Lao Tzu’s book is a subtle lesson, designed to teach the reader about the nature of the Tao. As it says in the very first chapter of the Tao Teh Ching, the Tao that can be named is not the true Tao. To the Occidental mind, this seems to be a contradiction; achieving an understanding requires a loosening of the rigid patterns of thought typical of the western mind. One must learn to hold two seemingly contradictory ideas in their mind simultaneously, to allow the meaning of each to mingle, and blend with the other, until the true nature of Tao is revealed, even though it cannot be touched, or seen, or heard.
This subtle process is difficult for westerners to use, as we tend to think in a straight line, from a to b; to understand the Tao, one must first understand that, to the eastern mind, a IS b. Instead of viewing the world as subject to cause and effect, the eastern way of looking at the world views cause and effect as more flexible, more fluid, less like a stone, more like water. As I said, subtle, but not completely inscrutable…. Okay, maybe a little inscrutable…
And now I know why Murphy sent them to me…. If one considers the second quote, using the lines from the Tao Teh Ching as the subject of discussion, then it IS obvious. But don’t look at it too carefully, or it becomes unobvious, until you look at it for a long time, when it becomes obvious again…..
:-) Murphy was obviously telling us that, in order to understand the eastern way of thought, use the second quote as the process for examination of the idea, and one can find their way through to an understanding that they formerly could not see….
See, now what was so hard about that?….
Closing note from 2015: It seems to me, given my mood today, the proper closing pearl for the above… hmm… Well, whatever the above might be, I think it needs to have our old friend Zippy give us the final word on what we’ve just seen…. But, in looking, I found five good, solid Zippyisms, any one of which would be just right….
So, I’m leaving it up to the Gentle Reader to pick their own…. Here then, are Zippy’s thoughts on today’s discussion, to sum it all up for us… Yes, I know, you don’t have to tell me…. If you feel you must, go ahead, say what you feel in the comment section, when you share your choice for the best ending for today’s ranting section…. If you’re witty enough, I’ll even respond…. Oh, hell, what am I saying? I respond to anything…. go ahead, make my day…
“What UNIVERSE is this, please??” — Zippy the Pinhead
“MMM-MM!! So THIS is BIO-NEBULATION!” — Zippy the Pinhead
“Kids, don’t gross me off… “Adventures with MENTAL HYGIENE” can be carried too FAR!” — Zippy the Pinhead
“It’s getting harder and harder to act weird.” — Zippy the Pinhead
That’s for sure…. Finally, my personal favorite….
“Did YOU find a DIGITAL WATCH in YOUR box of VELVEETA?” — Zippy the Pinhead
Hey…. Better than another rant, isn’t it? Especially if you say the last one out loud, with the proper inflection…
I know I’m burnt out; it was the adrenaline, for sure, & there’s still a long road to travel…. Best to take a break now and again, I think… Since I can’t play my guitar here, this will have to do….
~~Zippy the Pinhead ~~
Oops…. Actually, that’s not today’s poem. I found it while searching for the group of Zippy’s appropriate closing statements for the section above…. THIS one is today’s offering… finally…. I think it’s appropriately querulous….
Oh, there it is again, fiddle faddle;
Begone, I said, vamoose, skedaddle!
It looked at me as if I were insane:
Scoffed, it did, filled me with pain.
Where does it come from?
Where does it live?
I’d stick out my thumb,
if I had more to give.
If only, should, would, could it be?
It went away again, this time free.
It will be back again, this I know;
or I’m wrong, and it won’t show.
Such goings on wobble the sphere,
I wish it wouldn’t do that here.
I’ve been wrong before…..
~~ gigoid ~~
Ain’t no time to hate–barely time to wait.
Wo ho what I want to know: where does the time go?
~~ Robert Hunter ~~
~~ “Uncle John’s Band ~~
Today’s final pearl is special, not merely for the Grateful Dead icon and song lyric adorning the space above, a lyric which metaphorically states (how else?) a big piece of my philosophy…. but, because all its parts are concepts which are also a big part of how I look at the world…. Not precisely, but, metaphorically, all say something I believe myself, one way or another… Such as the first; I wasn’t born a cynic, none of us are. But, we humans sure do have a tendency to turn each other into one post haste, if one is at all alert to irony, and/or hypocrisy, and, possesses, as well, a bare minimum of intelligence. The second one, sure, I don’t believe in a God, per se, but, if I did, that’s the way I’d want Him to be… and, so on…. Enjoy!…
~~ Max ~~
“I’m not into isms and asms.There isn’t a Catholic moon and a Baptist sun. I know the universal God is universal…. I feel that the same God-force that is the mother and father of the pope is also the mother and father of the loneliest wino on the planet.” — Dick Gregory
“I am never more serious than when I’m joking. It is inaccurate to say that I hate everything. I am strongly in favor of common sense, common honesty, and common decency. This makes me forever ineligible for public office.” — H.L. Mencken
“A physician, after he had felt the pulse of Pausanias, and considered his constitution, saying, “He ails nothing,” “It is because, sir,” he replied, “I use none of your physic.” — Plutarch (46-120 AD) — Of Pausanias the Son of Phistoanax
“It could probably be shown by facts and figures that there is no distinctly native American criminal class except Congress.” — Mark Twain Following the Equator (1897)
“The first problem for all of us, men and women, is not to learn, but to unlearn.” — Gloria Steinem
“Walking in a forest between two hedges of ferns transfigured by autumn – that is a triumph. What are ovations and applause beside it?” — E.M. Cioran
“An idea that is not dangerous is unworthy of being called an idea at all.” — Oscar Wilde (1854-1900)
~~ Petrarch ~~
~~ Geoffrey Chaucer (1328-1400) ~~
~~ Troilus and Creseide, Book ii, Line 470 ~~
You may wonder why this pearl (if that’s what it is….) is here in the closing section…. Well, that’s easy to explain. I came across it a day or so ago when searching for some pearls, to use for a pearl, as part of a Pearl. I know, it’s confusing, but, don’t fret about that now; when I found the damn thing, it didn’t fit in with the one I was working on. In fact, from what I can tell, there isn’t much it WILL fit with….
My problem is this…. Does anyone know what this MEANS? “Of harmes two the lesse is for to cheese.” What the HELL is it? I mean, I know Chaucer’s tales were written in Middle English, which bears little resemblance to modern English, but, most of what he wrote can at least be considered in the same ballpark, where we can puzzle out some meaning. This damn thing came from another galaxy, by the sound of it…. I would use it, just for the lilting sound of it when spoken; it sounds just as if you’ve been cursed at by a drunken Scotsman. But, I can’t seem to figure out anything to go with it, other than something we don’t have, which is a lot of pearls about cheese….
Oh well…. I guess I can’t use ALL of them; it’s just so cute!…. It speaks with such authority; if I knew what the devil it meant, I’d probably believe it, just because it sounds so cool to say… Oh, am I getting strange, again? Okay. We can go now…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes…..
Insert witty closing phrase of your choosing here….
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest Carole, Mark,Theresa, & Richy
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
PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.
“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch
À bientôt, mon cherí….