Illuminating me softly with his bhang….

Ffolkes,

“Ask of friends only what is honorable.”

~~ Marcus Tullius Cicero ~~

(106-43 B.C.)

August 14 2014 008

    I’d never do that….. in fact, I’m going to apply this sentiment to myself. The routine I have established over time to produce this blog on a daily basis is completely in the toilet today; it’s already after 6 AM, two full hours after I usually begin the process. Yesterday, being moving day for Pat, exhausted me, though I personally didn’t do much; that sort of activity is always a bit stressful, even when there are no hard feelings involved….. It is still a big change, as I’m now living alone again…. No worries, I enjoy my own company….

Since the internet was in Pat’s name, I am having to wait about five days to get internet service back online, waiting for one of the multinational mega corps to hook me up with a phone & portal…. I think I went with the Death star logo folks…. Regardless, I’m offline for a week, and will have to adjourn to a Wifi spot somewhere later on to post….. SIGH…. The things I do for my art….

I overslept two hours, and still feel as if I should be abed…. it hurts everywhere…. In fact, I’m going to finish this Pearl, to the point I can go to post it somewhere, then lay down for a while again…. You’ll never know it, all you’ll see is a very late posting from me for today, and possibly for the next few days…. I don’t know yet how hard it will be to get to a spot where I can log on to WordPress, so, that remains to be seen…. For now, I’ll close this intro section, which, strangely enough, is the closest thing to a REAL introduction I’ve had come through here in some time…. Oh, look out, we’re diving now….

Shall we Pearl….

“Mark how fleeting and paltry is the estate of man,–yesterday in embryo, to-morrow a mummy or ashes. So for the hair’s-breadth of time assigned to thee live rationally, and part with life cheerfully, as drops the ripe olive, extolling the season that bore it and the tree that matured it.” — Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (121-180 AD) — Meditations, iv, 48

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You’re going to get archived material today, ffolkes, that’s all there is to it…. I hurt, I’m tired, and I wanna go to bed, so, old stuff it is…. Here is an unusual piece, for me…. I don’t usually write reviews, or essays on fictional characters, but, for an old closet romantic such as myself, this was irresistible…..

From 4/5/2012:

Visions of Truth and Beauty; The Tragedy of Severus Snape

The character of Severus Snape is, as revealed in the seven novels that comprise the epic creation by J. K. Rowlings, (which I choose to entitle Harry Potter, and The Chronicles of The Infinite Magic of  Love, hopefully with her approval and blessing), in my somewhat less than humble opinion, destined to become, if not synonymous, at least analogous, with that of Cryano de Bergerac, John Smith the Puritan, or the man from Tale of Two Cities, whose name escapes me (suffering functional disparity as I am from early onset Alzheimer’s and the subsequent prophylactic application of sour mash bourbon), who said, “It is a far, far better thing that I do than I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known”. Sounds a little sappy for gigoid, doesn’t it? Well, you know what? I am completely and utterly serious…..

As I do not know Ms. Rowling, other than through her writing, and her pubic persona, which is carefully controlled, relatively speaking, I cannot say if it was her intent to create a character of such power that he would be forever enshrined amid the most famous of the heroic willing victims of tragedy in literary history. It is moot, anyway, because she has….

Here is a man who spent his entire life enduring unrequited love, love that, in his mind, could have been his, had he chosen differently. Yet, knowing that he could never have his deepest desire without destroying that which he loved, he still acted with honor to do all he could to keep the object of his obsession safe, to honor her and the love he felt, even after her death, and in defiance of the threat of his own.  He braved the wrath of the most terrifying of villains for almost 20 years, betraying that master of evil at every turn, to do what he could only hold as his Duty; he did this, knowing full well that in the end, he would have to kill the only man in the world who trusted him, and that he would die because of it. And, he knew as well, that his sacrifice would never be known to anyone but the son of the man he most envied in life, the son that might have been his…..

I’ve read a lot of what may be termed as classical literature, and in all that I’ve read, I have never found a character who fit the mold of the tragic hero any better, or more deserved the title of nobility it implies. Though flawed and miserable, Snape makes the hard choices, correctly, at the most critical junctures of his life, all for love of his Lily. As Dumbledore exclaims when he sees the Patronus that Snape produces, a doe, identical to that of Lily, the only other human being he has ever loved,  “Lily! After all this time?”  Snape merely replies, “Always….”   Now, that is a hero, flawed and unlikeable as he is….. a hero that will go down in history, along with many of the characters from this series of books that will one day certainly be called “classics”……

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As is patently obvious, all of the material for today’s Pearl came from April of 2012; apparently, it was a good month for Pearls…. Here is one of the poetry sections, which is a bit different…. Any comments, or answers to the age-old question posed in the entry are welcome, even in today’s modern world….

From 4/6/2012:

Limericks are art forms complex,
Their topics run chiefly to sex.
They usually have virgins,
And masculine urgin’s,
 And other erotic effects.

~~ Anonymous ~~

Haiku are always
calmly directing our eyes
pointing to the way.

~~ gigoid ~~

So, it occurred to me, after writing the above haiku, to ask myself, “Self, which came first, the limerick or the haiku?”  At first, I thought I was just being silly. Then I realized I really wanted to know. So, here is the deal….. I would like anyone who has any idea on this to please respond, either by commenting, or by posting a reply; if I follow your blog, I’ll be notified of either method of response, and be able to reply. No prizes will be awarded, though I will mention your name, and your answer to this time-honored query. (Well, it’s been honored for the two or three minutes since I asked it, and by the time you answer, it will be more so….) So, join in the fun, and the challenge, and send me a response today! You won’t regret it, much…..

The Quitter

It’s the plugging away that will win you the day,
So don’t be a piker, old pard!
Just draw on your grit, it’s so easy to quit:
It’s the keeping-your-chin-up that’s hard.
It’s easy to cry that you’re beaten–and die;
It’s easy to crawfish and crawl;
But to fight and to fight when hope’s out of sight–
Why, that’s the best game of them all!
And though you come out of each grueling bout,
All broken and beaten and scarred,
Just have one more try–it’s dead easy to die,
It’s the keeping-on-living that’s hard.

~~ Robert W. Service ~~


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This section is one of the many done this week ahead of time, to account for not having internet service at home for the week…. It’s a good one, from the time before Pearls of Virtual Wisdom had assumed the format we know and love today…. When first posted, this was one of five sections in each day’s Pearl…. See how lucky you are now? Only three to cope with these days…..

From 4/3/2012:

“A conclusion is the place where you got tired of thinking.” — Matz’s Maxim

Upon reflection, although this is a fine pearl, I’m not going to discuss it now. I’m already tired of thinking, so here is my conclusion on this: he’s got a good point. Now, let’s start this section over…..

“A life directed chiefly toward the fulfillment of personal desires sooner or later always leads to bitter disappointment.” — Albert Einstein

Now, there’s a pearl! Albert Einstein is generally regarded as one of mankind’s most brilliant members, but most people do not have the capability to see how or why this is so, other than knowing that he was responsible for E = MC²; it is only by extension he is blamed for the atomic bomb.  But if one takes the time to look past this bit of common knowledge, to look at his statements of philosophy, and life in general, of which there are a great many recorded, it becomes clear at once…. the key to his genius lay in the simplicity of his thought processes.

Albert looked at the world, and the universe at large, through eyes that refused to look away from the simple elegance of the underlying nature of reality…. Instead, he focused on the small, basic thoughts, ideas, or physical properties that best described what is real and true.  He also did not add superfluous judgments, or unseen factors to what he perceived, but, rather, again, focusing on that part of the concept that is important, not those parts that are extraneous to its purpose, and our understanding.  He thus was able to see further into the nature of reality than is common to the rest of us, who are prone to complicate our perceptions with our prejudices, and/or misconceptions.

The quote above is a perfect example of this quality; it looks directly at human nature, showing us how our own attitudes and desires can, potentially, be the cause of our own difficulties in life, thus giving us the opportunity to turn our efforts in a direction that will ultimately be more beneficial. The statement clearly lays the responsibility for the tenor of our lives right in our own laps, where it belongs, but does so without condemnation or insult, merely dispassionate truth. Albert was truly one of humanity’s greatest treasures, and his words will, hopefully, continue to help guide people through life far into to the future…. provided there is one….. but that’s a different subject altogether…..

“I don’t know what your destiny will be, but one thing I do know: the only ones among you who will be really happy are those who have sought and found how to serve.” — Albert Schweitzer

(I know, I know….. not the same Albert. But, it was deliberate, and I’m just doing what Murphy wants….. As is sometimes common, as soon as I finished the above section, the absolute perfect ending pearl popped up, demanding to be included. I think Herr Schweitzer was thinking of Herr Einstein when he related this thought, anyway….. I know for sure that Albert Einstein was a happy guy; I have pictorial proof, which I have shared below…..so there…..)


050405_einstein_tongue.widec

Note from the future:

To drive home the point being made in the last bit, I will also report that one of my favorite lines from Albert, again proving his sense of humor, goes something like this…. “After imagining, refining, and proving the Theory of Relativity, which describes a large part of how the entire Universe works, wearing fuzzy slippers with plaid pajamas is easy….”   I can’t vouch for the authenticity, but, I swear I read it somewhere, and he really did say it…. You may not believe it, but, I actually have visual proof of it; he said it during an interview in the early 1950’s, for a newspaper back East, which took this picture that day….


fuzzy Albert

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Routine, or no routine, it’s done…. In record time, too; it only took forty-three minutes to do the intro, and fill in two sections. Not too shabby for a Pearl without routine…. Now comes the hard part…. I must wend my way out into the Big Blue Room, taking my computer with me, to go post this somewhere…. Fortunately for me, those sort of establishments have just what I need to assist me in getting it done….. more caffeine and sugar!…. My Doc won’t like it, but, hey, we all do what we gotta do, right? Right…. See ya tomorrow, ffolkes, if things go according to plan….. If Murphy doesn’t hear about it, we could get lucky….

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

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In my left ear, sir….

Ffolkes,

Pearls should…

Long, deep thoughts always

bring truth to the eyes of man,

and light into dark.

~~ gigoid ~~

August 7 2014 032

    Today’s Pearl will be, to some extent, similar to the above picture, in that, the participants of the activity recorded are having as much, or more, fun, than those who are observing and recording…. Now, it’s true, such a statement only takes into account such factors as how much fun it is to watch others work, how much the elephant enjoys being sprayed, but, has no clue as to whether or not the guy washing the beast is gay, straight, or in-between… Of course, the latter has nothing at all to do with anything, but, it was shocking enough to get your attention, wasn’t it?….

Just a little trick to open up…. sort of like the old pull a coin from the ear trick, but, with letters…. None of what is included in the above paragraph had any particular meaning, or significance; it was all a set-up for the punch line…. I also know that it is currently considered a faux pas to use gays, lesbians, or other alternative choice adherents as the butt, or even the subject, of any sort of joke…. I guess they’re too sensitive? I don’t know, and don;t care; it’s a fucking joke, ffolkes, so get over it…. Nobody here is laughing at gays; I laugh at those who are afraid of them, or hate them, as I know, for a FACT, it is usually because of their own fear of feeling attracted to the same sex that prompts them to be cruel or stupid.

I didn’t mean, actually, to get into anything so controversial right off; in fact, I was trying to figure out how to tell y’all I was just going to re-blog an older post…. then, I sort of fell into this discussion, whereupon I decided I was up, so I may as well Pearl…. So be it….

I don’t know where this will end up; I do know we won’t be targeting any hapless LGBT enthusiasts in any of our rants, as I figure they don’t need any help from me…. The last twenty or thirty years of constant societal interaction has brought the issues to a head, and, in the process, has made veteran activists out of many people who otherwise would never have even thought about it…. There is still a long way to go, as there are a LOT of ignorant people out there, none of whom care to admit their ignorance, or try to learn anything new, but, the tide has turned in society, and the forces of ignorance are currently in full retreat from their position of intransigence regarding sexuality…

This isn’t saying I won’t support them, I’m just not devoting this entire Pearl to their issues…. In fact, I haven’t a clue as to what issues we may touch upon, but, it’s not going to be that one…. unless, of course, some headline jumps up, grabs me by the eyes, and says, “here, look at THIS!”…. It’s been known to happen…. I think I’m beginning to unravel here….

It’s probably best if I stop here, and get on with the rest of today’s effort…. I’m getting further and further away from any sort of coherency in this section; we’d be better off to get on to the next….. This means, naturally, since we are so firmly entrenched in this, we’ll need to apply another emergency exit strategy, in order to return to any semblance of dignified competence…. Not that such is anything like normal around here, but, we do try to maintain a certain level of protocol and tradition, even if it constantly blows up in our faces….. Who knew Murphy was allergic to protocol?….. Not me….

Shall we Pearl?….

“Belief gets in the way of learning.” — Robert Heinlein, Time Enough for Love

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After reading the following diatribe-style pearl, it is clear that two pearls are necessary to start it off with the correct frame of mind…. anything less would be hazardous to your mental health….

“Perhaps I know why it is man alone who laughs: He alone suffers so deeply that he had to invent laughter.” — Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche

“Kids, don’t gross me off..  “Adventures with MENTAL HYGIENE” can be carried too FAR!” — Zippy the Pinhead

When I first began today, I had intended to re-blog an older post, and still may use something from the archives….. for now though, I’ve collected another set of links to articles that continue to explore the problems we have in society that are leading us to our extinction, more rapidly than we are willing to admit…. there are only three articles, but, the two issues covered are, perhaps, two of the more serious issues we face, to wit: climate change, and the effects of racism on modern society (that racism, as I see it, is the primary contributing factor behind the militarization of the police forces in this country, as well as around the world….)

If you don’t think I’m being accurate, or that the police forces around America aren’t becoming militarized, allow me to provide you with some Art that clearly indicates what I mean…. The picture you see (which has been used in a number of sites and reports…. I believe it’s an Associated Press picture….) shows the county police in Ferguson, Missouri, during one of the community protests over the shooting of an unarmed civilian…. This, ffolkes, is how the modern police force is views the public they allegedly serve…… as their enemy….. After looking at the picture, read the two articles, which, of course, are from a European news outlet…. our own news companies won’t talk very much about the issue…. Oh, they’re reporting on it, but, they don’t even MENTION any of the military style equipment or tactics, except in passing….

POLICE not army

    These yahoos are in a small town in central Missouri, but, by their dress  and equipment, you would think they were about to be attacked by armed Jihadi forces in another country…. And, let me ask you this….. are these guys going to carry around all those neat battle toys, and not want to USE them? Just a thought, as it seems to me, they would WANT to see what all their new stuff can do…. I mean, just LOOK at all that weaponry, the armored assault vehicle, the radar or sonic weaponry, the battle helmets, armored vests, automatic rifles, sharpshooters…. it’s a regular assault force there….

Also, just what IS that thing on top of the battle truck? I believe it is a targeting device for some sort of automatic weaponry, or possibly for rockets?….  I’m not currently up-to-date on weapons tech; I just know it doesn’t make a lot of sense to see ANY of these articles of war deployed against our own citizenry…. You think? Okay, read the articles, then tell me if you disagree with any of this….

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/aug/14/obama-ferguson-police-excessive-force-michael-brown

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/aug/14/ferguson-cops-military-weapons-michael-brown-shooting-protests

“…witnessed teargas being shot directly at a camera crew with al-Jazeera America. Photographs later showed police officers dismantling al-Jazaeera’s broadcasting equipment after the crew fled. “

Now, of course, we see why the American news reporters are reluctant to write about what the police are doing…. The people who would report on them are being targeted; in the article you will see where the county police arrested two reporters in a fast food restaurant, then released them only because the chief of police intervened…. Do you think maybe the reporters are getting a bit leery of making the police the subject of their writing? I certainly do; they’re human, and aren’t going to put themselves at risk if they can avoid it….

Next comes something about the issue of climate change, from one of my favorite columnists, who always has an even-handed, insightful approach to such issues…. I’m giving up now, as the picture above tends to send my outrage through the roof…. After that, if I start in on this issue, I’ll overload, and possibly end up in bed again from exhaustion…. Not going there, believe me…. Instead, after you enjoy Mr. Carroll’s words, I’ll put together an old-school pearl, to try to soothe my fevered brow….

http://www.sfgate.com/entertainment/carroll/article/Tons-of-methane-tons-of-garbage-What-fun-5684628.php

Okay, lets see if I can work off some of this angst with some pearls that shoot in the direction of the Asininnies….

“Teach a parrot the terms “supply and demand” and you’ve got an economist.” — Thomas Carlyle

“We haven’t the time to take our time.” — Eugene Ionesco

“The difference between a lawyer and a rooster, is that the rooster gets up in the morning and clucks defiance.” — Smart Bee

“A generation which ignores history has no past and no future.” — Robert Heinlein, The Notebooks of Lazarus Long

“A very ancient and fish-like smell.” — William Shakespeare (1564-1616), The Tempest — Act ii, Sc. 2

“When I think back on all the crap I learned in high school…” — Paul Simon

(Okay, so, it makes more sense when the next line is included….)

“It’s a wonder I can think at all….” – Paul Simon

Well…. It seems that seven stars don’t quite cut it…. we’ll need to expand to nine…. hold on, we’ll find two more, & be done with it…..

“The award for All-Time Champion and Protector of Youthful Morals goes to Representative Clare E. Hoffman of Michigan.  During an  impassioned House debate over a proposed bill to “expand oyster and clam research,” a sharp-eared informant transcribed the following exchange between our hero and Rep. John D. Dingell, also of Michigan…..
DINGELL: There are places in the world at the present time where we are having to artificially propagate oysters and clams.
HOFFMAN: You mean the oysters I buy are not nature’s oysters?
DINGELL: They may or may not be natural. The simple fact of the matter is that female oysters through their living habits cast out large amounts of seed and the male oysters cast out large amounts of fertilization…
HOFFMAN: Wait a minute!  I do not want to go into that.  There are many teenagers who read The Congressional Record.”

– Smart Bee

“There is no freedom without the power to defend it.”– Smart Bee

Close enough…..

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First posted on 10/24/2012:

“What do you want me to do?  Say it again in worse English?” — Robert Frost, when asked about the meaning of one of his poems.

A Late Walk

When I go up through the mowing field,
The headless aftermath,
Smooth-laid like thatch with the heavy dew,
Half closes the garden path.

And when I come to the garden ground,
The whir of sober birds
Up from the tangle of withered weeds
Is sadder than any words

A tree beside the wall stands bare,
But a leaf that lingered brown,
Disturbed, I doubt not, by my thought,
Comes softly rattling down.

I end not far from my going forth
By picking the faded blue
Of the last remaining aster flower
To carry again to you.

~~ Robert Frost ~~

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Rather than try any more to do what I cannot do, I’m going to the archives, for a piece I wrote a couple of years ago that seems to fit in with my mood today, if not my subject matter under discussion…. I guess, all in all, this one’s got a bit of a lot of things in it…. Enjoy, please….

From 10/27/2012:

“I often have long conversations all by myself, and I am so clever that sometimes I don’t understand a single word I am saying.” — Oscar Wilde

AOL!….. LOL…. “AOL!” is hacker slang for “me, too!”, patterned after the typical AOL user’s response to a witty statement in a chat room…. in this case, I can honestly say that Oscar and I have this in common, especially the part about not understanding a word I’m saying….. I would say that puts me in some pretty good company, what?….

“The trouble with using experience as a guide is that the final exam often comes first and then the lesson.” — Smart Bee

Oscar once made a statement that ran parallel to this one, as well. It is a hard lesson for all of us to learn, but, it is one of those common pieces of natural law that affect all of us at one time or another in our lives. Life, like the physical universe, just doesn’t care whether or not we are ready for an experience, it just happens. It is our own reaction to that which determines whether or not we are able to cope with the experience, and learn from it, or whether it buries us…. an all-too-common fate. It’s a tough room, as the comedian said….

“If you’re smoking after sex then you’re going *WAY* too fast!” — Smart Bee

This is not a perfect segue into the next item for discussion, since I’m a) not sure what that was, and b) this wasn’t it, but it does exemplify what I like to call the “silly factor”, an offshoot effect of the natural bozoid tendencies that all of us humans possess as members of this silly species…. Murphy’s Law is merely an observation, but is one that could only be made by our species (even though I’ve noted that other species, that associate with us, can sometimes be pulled into Murphy’s influence, to do his bidding, and occasionally, to act as co-victims….), because he takes full advantage of our tendencies toward bozoid behavior, to set traps for us; traps that cannot, and never do, fail to catch us unawares.

“I sometimes think that God in creating Man somewhat overestimated his ability.” — Oscar Wilde (1854-1900)

Even if one considers that God did not exceed his capabilities when making Man, he certainly made a rush job of it, and left certain design characteristics out of the final production, facets that would have gone a long way toward making this world a lot more pleasant a place than it has turned out to be, with Man in his current foolish state. Ah well, it just goes to show that one shouldn’t depend on a notion like creationism to provide us with excuses for our behavior….. accepting that kind of indulgences, or even assuming it, has obviously led us to the state of affairs we now face in the world, as the great majority of people continue to behave just as if they had the right to use the universe as they choose, rather than as they should do as moral creatures….

“Instead of being born again, why not just grow up?” — Smart Bee

That about says it all, don’t you think? Mankind would be far better off if we all decided to act as grown-ups, rather than clinging to the ages-old fantasies that have put us in this position. Only a child acts without regard to consequences; our species has been refusing to grow beyond that avaricious stage for millennia now, and the world is showing the deleterious effects of that sense of entitlement. We cannot continue to treat this planet as our toy, to be used and discarded like it was some piece of manufactured plastic, or we will most certainly suffer the very real consequences of that foolish attitude.

“Morals today are corrupted by our worship of riches.” — Marcus Tullius Cicero (106-43 B.C.)

In spite of all the massive quantities of evidence that it is harmful, we continue to pump millions of tons of carbon monoxide into the atmosphere every minute of every day…. the effect of that on the balanced ecology of the planet is reaching a critical flash point, and may already be at a point from which there is no turning back…. This is FACT, not supposition….. but, the world carries on, certain that we may depend on the same old idea, that we are invulnerable, and not subject to the laws of nature…. a sincerely stupid idea at best…. It is almost enough to make one want to tear hair out and start shooting…. but, unfortunately, there isn’t enough ammunition to shoot all the folks who need to be shot, and it’s probably too late now, anyway….. Besides, who wants to be the one who has to decide who to shoot first? (I do! I do!…. which just proves that we humans can’t handle that sort of godly decisiveness….)

“All the secrets we may be able to keep from any and every god and human being do not in the least absolve us from the obligation to refrain from whatever actions are greedy, unjust, sensual, or otherwise immoderate.” — Cicero, On Duties

It’s really too bad that this idea never caught on…. oh, many folks learned to use it, to lie to the rest of us, but, in reality, nobody ever really does this, they just say they do….. It kind of makes one wonder whether we deserve to keep living, doesn’t it?  Well, it makes ME wonder…. with not a little bit of sadness, for our species holds such promise…. a promise we have never learned to keep….

“It is only the superficial qualities that last. Man’s deeper nature is soon found out.” — Oscar Wilde

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Well, ffolkes, it’s done; I wasn’t completely sure I would be able to get it to this point when I started, and, half-way through, I almost gave up again…. I think we can mark this one down under the “Serendipity” category tab, as I don’t know how to explain it any other way…. I’m only guessing here, but, I think proofing would be superfluous at this point, so, off we go to post…. See y’all tomorrow, given half a chance….

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

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Flicking and swishing here, your grogginess….

Ffolkes,

Spintharus, speaking in commendation of Epaminondas, says he scarce
ever met with any man who knew more and spoke less.

 ~~ Plutarch (46-120 AD) ~~ Of Hearing, 6

—————————————————————————-

True is suffering; this is true cause;
this is true cessation; this is the true path.

Know the sufferings; give up they causes;
attain the cessation of the suffering; follow the true paths.

Know the sufferings although there is nothing to know;
relinquish the causes of misery although there is nothing to relinquish;
be earnest in cessation although there is nothing to cease;
practice the means of cessation although there is nothing to practice.

~~ Buddha, The Four Noble Truths ~~

cats_17

    In case there is ANY question as to the meaning of any of the above…. The first quote is there to set the tone…. The next quote, from  the Buddha, is there to show how the Buddha understood Reality, which is to say, very well…. If you look at the picture of the three pals napping on the sidewalk, then consider the Four Noble Truths, you will see that each of these animals…. dog, cat, rat…. are all perfect examples of a creature who LIVES by those precepts…. They all know how hard life can be, but are content to have a serene moment of companionship, without becoming wrapped up in any species-oriented chauvinism…. I think it’s pretty cool myself…

It’s also a good thing it’s here, because I’m late again, and will have to rely on stuff that was either done ahead of time, or is very quick and easy to put in here, where it can do me some good…. Some bloggers would probably just re-blog an old blog, but, I like to at least put some effort into making something fresh each day, even if it is only a fresh reprint of an older piece…. I’m finding my rants from a couple of years ago are all still pretty valid, what with the crap that continues to plague us due to the shenanigans of the Asininnies, and their ilk….

Since I am so late, though, we’ll go with some of that older material, just to save the time…. At least I’m not using the old lame excuse of expediency, or doing this because of my own hidden agenda…. No, my agenda is right out there, and only has to do with getting done with this with a bit of dignity intact, not with ripping y’all off, or making sure I’m in control of your life…. which is what you can count on from your local politicians, and their myrmidons….

In that vein, I believe I may have reached a point where I can put an end to this intro section…. or, if that isn’t feasible, I can usually use one of the methods we’ve developed to help us in these moments of uncertainty….  Why, look, here’s one of them now! I believe it’s actually the method we call #4, the old standby…. It works like this….

Shall we Pearl?….

“It did not matter, after all. He was only one man. One man’s fate is not important.
If it is not, what is?
He could not endure those remembered words.”

– Ursula K. Le Guin, spoken by Gaverel Rocannon, Rocannon’s World

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Since I am not going to rant this morning, I’m going to sublimate, in order to relieve some of the built-up angst, from the last couple of days of headline reading without producing a rant to release the worst of the pressure, I will create an old-school pearl, fresh and sharp, to poke some holes in the blanket of wool that the Asininnies are forever trying to pull over our eyes….

“If turkeys could fly Congress would be an airport…!” — Smart Bee

“As Mankind becomes more liberal, they will be more apt to allow that all those who conduct themselves as worthy members of the community are equally entitled to the protections of civil government.  I hope ever to see America among the foremost nations of justice and liberality.” — George Washington

(Well…. So much for THAT idea!…..)

“The release of atom power has changed everything except our way of thinking…the solution to this problem lies in the heart of mankind.  If only I had known, I should have become a watchmaker.” — Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

“I don’t care what is written about me so long as it isn’t true.” — Dorothy Parker

(A little known fact about this quote…. Dorothy was quoting Howard Taft….)

(That, of course, is a lie; I made it up…. but, it SOUNDS true, doesn’t it?…. By which, we see it may be defined as a “political truth”….)

“It is hard to free fools from the chains they revere.” — Voltaire

“If you have a weak candidate and a weak platform, wrap yourself up in the American flag and talk about the Constitution.” — Matthew S. Quay

“The reason that poverty and homelessness exist is not because capitalism is not working properly, but because that is the way it works.” — Smart Bee

Not bad, not bad at all for what it is…. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did….. I’m going to go clean up now…. Wait, first, I’ll try to make up for this, with one more pearl, that should help you feel a little better…. If not, well, there’s always aspirin in the first-aid kit if you want one….

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I’m going with mine, to save time, and blame…. I hope you enjoy this one; it’s from December of 2012…..

Dreaming of Calliope

La belle dame sans merci speaks aloud through endless night,
torturing dreams, with powerful words and stentorian phrases.
Manifest visions bathed in unbearable grace and light,
destroying all direction, standing lost, in unfathomable mazes.

Fate plays a part, one that will never face denial,
as fear and courage eternally vie for ascendancy.
Conflict becomes valid, gifting strength in open trial,
but honest emotion wears no costume so fancy.

Blood, sweat, and tears stroll on avenues of gold,
unlikely heroines heralding as in ancient lore;
Sharp, competent knives cut through tales untold,
eternally shifting reality past the naked shore.

Drifting toward origin, bereft of mandate or cause,
finished, nay, abandoned, tied with a figurative bow.
No simple gift from muses to give comfort or pause,
save that all we need to know, we already know…..

~~ gigoid ~~

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The following older pearl is one I’ve probably used many times, as it contains much of the wisdom I use personally to guide my actions through life…. It’s all stuff I learned, one way or another, from my Dad, the Master Sergeant…. All of this could be considered to be ACTUAL wisdom, I think; it’s much more valid, and useful, than most of what you’ll find masquerading as such, and is certainly more than merely virtual wisdom…. because it’s all been tested by time, and found to be true….

From 9/30/2012:

Here are some true pearls of virtual wisdom from the acknowledged Grand Master of Science Fiction…… arrogantly solipsistic, delightfully honest, absolutely moral according to whim, and eminently useful in pursuing a full life of honor and joy…..

“The only real sin is hurting others unnecessarily. All other sins are made up nonsense…. (Hurting yourself is not sinful, just stupid.)”  — Robert Heinlein

“A desire not to butt into other people’s business is at least eighty percent of all human wisdom… and the other twenty percent isn’t very important.”
“You butt into other people’s business.  All the time.”
“Who said I was wise?  I’m a professional bad example.  You can learn a lot by watching me.” –Dr. Jubal Harshaw — Stranger in a Strange Land, Robert A. Heinlein

“Don’t store garlic near other victuals.” — from The Notebooks of Lazarus Long

“The two highest achievements of the human mind are the twin concepts of “loyalty” and “duty.” Whenever these twin concepts fall into disrepute — get out of there fast! You may possibly save yourself, but it is too late to save that society. It is doomed.” — from The Notebooks of Lazarus Long

“There is no conclusive evidence of life after death. But there is no evidence of any sort against it. Soon enough you will know. So why fret about it?” — Robert Heinlein

“The more you love, the more you can love — and the more intensely you love. Nor is there any limit on how many you can love. If a person had time enough, he could love all of that majority who are decent and just.” — Robert Heinlein

Lastly….. a statement that serves as an adjunct to Peruaosophy; indeed, it’s more that that, as it forms a critical part of the basic premises, upon which that philosophy was created…..

“Do not confuse “duty” with what other people expect of you; they are utterly different. Duty is a debt you owe to yourself to fulfill obligations you have assumed voluntarily. Paying that debt can entail anything from years of patient work to instant willingness to die. Difficult it may be, but the reward is self-respect.
But there is no reward at all for doing what other people expect of you, and to do so is not merely difficult, but impossible. It is easier to deal with a footpad than it is with the leech who wants “just a few minutes of your time, please — this won’t take long.” Time is your total capital, and the minutes of your life are painfully few. If you allow yourself to fall into the vice of agreeing to such requests, they quickly snowball to the point where these parasites will use up 100 percent of your time — and squawk for more!
So learn to say No – and to be rude about it when necessary. Otherwise you will not have time to carry out your duty, or to do your own work, and certainly no time for love and happiness. The termites will nibble away your life and leave none of it for you. (This rule does not mean that you must not do a favor for a friend, or even a stranger. But let the choice be yours. Don’t do it because it is “expected” of you.) ” — Robert Heinlein

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Today, as is sometimes the case when I arise late, and push a bit to get this done on time, I feel a bit scattered at the end…. which, I suppose, isn’t all that surprising, given the nature of what I’m doing….. It’s okay, really, because it means I’ve been focused, so the results should meet any of the loose standards to which I hold these Pearls…. If not, well, too bad, so sad, because, hey, it’s done, and we’re NOT going to do it over…. On that note, I should follow my own advice, and take my leave before it gets any riskier…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes, provided the NSA leaves me be….

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

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Being alone can be a gift….

Ffolkes,

“Being intelligent is not a felony.  But most societies evaluate it as at least a misdemeanor.” — Lazarus Long

cats_14

  Deipnosophist: a person adept at conversation at table. From Greek, deipnosophistai,  title of a Greek work by Athenaeus (3rd century), describing learned discussions at a banquet, from deipnon  meal + sophistai  wise men (from Dictionary.com)

Yesterday’s post began with a quote from Athenaeus, the author of the book described in the above definition; at the time, I didn’t know what the word deipnosophist meant, which is why I looked it up…. Being one who considers himself a deipnosophist, it was the only thing to do…. Besides, I always enjoy learning new words, ideas, or just about any old thing at all, so, it was a no-brainer for me to seek out the meaning…. I can’t help it, it’s the way I am; if I don’t know, I want to find out….

This morning, I find myself very, very late, having indulged myself in an extra hour and a half of sleep…. In order to soothe my guilt, and the slight emotional edginess I get when my reality refuses to respect my plans, I’m going to have to go old school a lot, and will dip into the archives heavily to fill out the three sections below…. The first section should be okay; it’s a short mini-rant, or two, I started on yesterday, so I can just finish them with an old school target practice session…. I’ll pick from the archives for two and three, so, be prepared, if you please, and don’t forget to update your log sheets….

That’s it, that’s all I’ve got today…. Just some minor housekeeping, a short bit of self-aggrandizement, disguised as self-deprecation, and a touch of honesty; it’s not Ibsen, but it’s Art…. or, at least, it’s imitating Art…. Oh, that’s right, I’m trying to work on Art’s fraternal twin, Rufus, so, maybe today’s material will resemble him, in the eyes, or maybe the chin…. Ah, the hell with it, I’m jumping in, ffolkes; y’all can come along if you like….

Oh, almost forgot…. the picture again came from a feature on the London Daily Telegraph, but, I forget when…. just google the picture itself, if you really want to know who took it….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“Again, our observations of the stars make it evident, not only that the earth is circular, but also that it is a circle of no great size.  For quite a small change of position to south or north causes a manifest alteration of the horizon.  There is much change, I mean, in the stars which are overhead, and the stars seen are different, as one moves northward or southward.  …All of which goes to show not only that the earth is circular in shape, but that it is a sphere of no great size:  for otherwise the effect of so slight a change of place would not be so quickly apparent.  Hence, one should not be too sure of the incredibility of the view of those who conceive that there is a continuity between the parts about the pillars of Hercules [the strait of Gibraltar] and the parts about India, and that in this way the ocean is one.” — Aristotle, De Caelo, Fourth Century B.C.

In case there are any among you who do not understand why this quote is here, I refer you to the opening quote from Bob Heinlein. Together, the two make the statement I’m hoping to share with you…. Remember what they did to Galileo, when he told the exact same argument that Aristotle gives here, to the prelates of the church, a thousand years later, and was found to be a heretic….

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Okay, so, here are two short mini-rants, whose point lies in the articles to which the link will take you. Please read, and then call your congressional delegates to tell them to stop giving in to the corporate interests, and give people the right to their own property….

http://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/Law-changed-to-allow-unlocking-cellphones-5663147.php

“CTIA-The Wireless Association, which represents major wireless providers including AT&T, Sprint Corporation, T-Mobile USA, U.S. Cellular and Verizon Wireless, said in a statement: “Even though the vast majority of Americans enjoy upgrading to new devices once their contract terms are fulfilled, we recognize that some consumers may want to unlock their devices to move to another carrier.” It noted, however, that even though the phone is unlocked it might not work on other carriers because platforms and spectrum holdings vary,”

    “….which is quite deliberate,to ensure we make a massive profit on those millions of useless pieces of toxic waste, as well as to ensure nobody else can make anything from them, once they are no longer on our network.”   …. as the statement didn’t continue, even though it is true….

Point made, I think, so, onward, to a discussion of the Plague of Evil that continues to shame our culture…. Read the article, and think about all the other ways our culture brainwashes its citizens into keeping women in the unenviable position of subjugation…. It’s not just prejudice ffolkes, it’s oppression in its worst incarnation….

This issue, by the way, is one I’ve been harping on for years; to begin this segment of the rant, here is a short diatribe on the same subject from the archives…..

From 3/31/2012:

“When you slithered out of your hole that day, and you spewed your venom all over this defenseless 12-year-old girl, you made this court’s top 10 hit list. In a way, the best sentence this court could give would be no sentence at all, because if you left this courtroom I don’t think you would be alive 10 minutes. You are nothing but a weed, a weed among wheat…. And when we have a weed, it’s my job to eradicate the weed, because if you don’t you will choke the wheat. Therefore, I’m going to take you off the streets for just as long as I possibly can. It means you aren’t even eligible for parole until you’re 92. That leaves only one more count, aggravated robbery…. You stole this little girl’s bra as a souvenir, probably to brag about it to your friends later on. Well, I’m going to give you a souvenir of Trumbull County justice. And that is, you will receive a maximum sentence of 10 to 25 on the aggravated robbery for the stealing of that bra. And I hope that if you last 25 years in prison that you remember that souvenir.  Get this scum out of here!” — A sentence passed by Judge W. Wyatt McKay of Trumbull County, Ohio

One down, several million to go…. I wonder if this judge is still sitting on the bench; we could refer all the cases of human traffickers, rapists, abusers of women or children, and others of that ilk to his courtroom, and trust they will receive the maximum legal punishment of which the law is capable…. then, once they are inside, we just leak to the other prisoners what they are in for; I imagine they’ll take care of the rest….

A fella has to have his dreams…. and in my dreams, I can hear them, sisters, daughters, children, all crying out for help, waiting in anguish for someone to care…. who else, then, will stand up with me?….. During the 1960’s, in times of social changes gone ‘viral’, there was a poster I saw all over Berkeley…. It pictured men and women marching together, united in purpose…. the only caption said, “Free our sisters, free ourselves!”  This is a sentiment we all need to embrace, as valid now as it was over 40 years ago; if not now, when?…

Now, here is proof the problem not only still exists, but has worsened, if possible….

http://www.sfgate.com/entertainment/carroll/article/Whaddya-gonna-do-These-things-just-happen-5660879.php

“But wait: Here’s what the NFL did. It suspended Rice for two games. Two games! Most first-time drug users get suspended for four games; as we have seen, the penalty for the third time is one year. The NFL sent a clear message: Domestic violence is not that big a deal. It’s just, you know, women. They were probably asking for it….”

This one disgusts me, for it is all-too-typical in this society for women to be placed in this kind of situation, then, having nothing happen to the asshole who punched her out…. For me, the worst part is how the whole issue was played down by every level of reporting….. None of the men involved took any real responsibility, and that lack of integrity was echoed by the police, the hotel, the team he plays for, the press who covered it, and every other male individual who had any connection to the incident…. They all made it seem like the man had done nothing particularly bad, and, if he did, he was probably provoked into it by the woman

What a crock of shit!…. It’s probably a good thing I’m not going to rant on this any further, as my blood pressure is already spiking, from writing the above paragraph…. I swear, I am going to buy a gun, and I’m going to start using it on people in society who prey on the weak, the innocent, and the oppressed…. because society itself refuses to even acknowledge there is any problem. Fuck that, I’m sick of these assholes getting away with it, and never having to pay for their insanity and ignorance….

Fuck it, I’m gonna pearl now….

“Rumor has it that former Senator John Tower cheats at solitaire. Lengthy congressional investigation to discover source of dishonesty to follow.” — Smart Bee

“Although war is cruel and brutal, it is also dangerous and stupid.” — Yakko Warner

“Bury me on my face,” said Diogenes; and when he was asked why, he replied, “Because in a little while everything will be turned upside down.” — Diogenes Laertius (c. 200 AD) — Diogenes, vi

“I have little doubt that when St. George had killed the dragon he was heartily afraid of the princess.” — G. K. Chesterton, The Victorian Age in Literature

(Note: It is little prejudices like this that perpetuate the lies and misconceptions that so litter the battle fields of the war between the sexes…. Plus, did you ever notice that it is only MEN who think of the issue as a war?…. The whole problem lies in the FACT that men are afraid of women; this fear causes them to react by making sure that women fear them, by using their physical attributes to oppress them…. thus, unknowingly, forsaking all honor….)

“I disagree with what you say but will defend to the death your right to tell such LIES, LIES!  ALL LIES!” — Voltaire’s Evil Twin

“I have often wondered how it is that every man loves himself more than all the rest of men, but yet sets less value on his own opinions of himself than on the opinions of others.” — Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

” — How many NBC news producers does it take to change a light bulb? Three, one to drill a hole in the light bulb so it blows up when he turns it on, one to film it, and one to insist on the truth of the report despite the manipulation.” — Smart Bee

There…. I think I managed to find one shot for just about every one of the Asininnies in that pearl; not bad for someone not working very hard at it…. But, I think you can count on it to be effective; Smart Bee is bracketing the other quotes, which legitimizes and enhances each one…. I hope you enjoyed it, at least as much as the mini-rants….

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This needs no introduction; it does, however, demand your attention, as is its due, as a classical piece of our history…. and, an example of one of the few saving graces displayed by our species….

Ode on a Grecian Urn

Thou still unravish’d bride of quietness,
Thou foster-child of Silence and slow Time,
Sylvan historian, who canst thus express
A flowery tale more sweetly than our rhyme:
What leaf-fringed legend haunts about thy shape
Of deities or mortals, or of both,
In Tempe or the dales of Arcady?
What men or gods are these? what maidens loth?
What mad pursuit? What struggle to escape?
What pipes and timbrels? What wild ecstasy?

Heard melodies are sweet, but those unheard
Are sweeter; therefore, ye soft pipes, play on;
Not to the sensual ear, but, more endear’d,
Pipe to the spirit ditties of no tone:
Fair youth, beneath the trees, thou canst not leave
Thy song, nor ever can those trees be bare;
Bold lover, never, never canst thou kiss,
Though winning near the goal–yet, do not grieve;
She cannot fade, though thou hast not thy bliss,
For ever wilt thou love, and she be fair!

Ah, happy, happy boughs! that cannot shed
Your leaves, nor ever bid the Spring adieu;
And, happy melodist, unwearied,
For ever piping songs for ever new;
More happy love! more happy, happy love!
For ever warm and still to be enjoy’d,
For ever panting, and for ever young;
All breathing human passion far above,
That leaves a heart high-sorrowful and cloy’d,
A burning forehead, and a parching tongue.

Who are these coming to the sacrifice?
To what green altar, O mysterious priest,
Lead’st thou that heifer lowing at the skies,
And all her silken flanks with garlands drest?
What little town by river or sea shore,
Or mountain-built with peaceful citadel,
Is emptied of this folk, this pious morn?
And, little town, thy streets for evermore
Will silent be; and not a soul to tell
Why thou art desolate, can e’er return.

O Attic shape! Fair attitude! with brede
Of marble men and maidens overwrought,
With forest branches and the trodden weed;
Thou, silent form, dost tease us out of thought
As doth eternity: Cold pastoral!
When old age shall this generation waste,
Thou shalt remain, in midst of other woe
Than ours, a friend to man, to whom thou say’st,
‘Beauty is truth, truth beauty’–that is all
Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.

~~ John Keats ~~

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Okay, so here’s the deal…. Below is another diatribe/discussion, but, not really a rant; it’s a bit more eclectic than the usual choice of subject matter…. I enjoyed it, both writing it, and re-reading it; I hope you enjoy it as well… It does make today’s Pearl a bit hefty, but, hey, I’m a hefty guy….

From 3/3/2013:

“As a draft-animal is yoked in a wagon, even so the spirit is yoked in this body.” — Upanishads (c. B.C. 800)

Each of us is faced at times with the consciousness of our own approaching encounter with Death, the moment in time when our yoke is removed, and our spirit is freed, to once more join the rest of the conscious minds in the universe in roaming through realms of Reality we cannot see in this form. This Reality we cannot see is much larger, in one sense, than the one we can now perceive; it has to be, to be able to accommodate all the souls that have gone before, and all that are now present on Earth, that will someday join the rest of them, when they die…..

Every human being alive must face their own Death (I am capitalizing the word to give it the proper respect as one of the most important concepts we have as humans….); this is a truism no one can deny, or refute. Many people have banded together, to assume the belief that our universe was created this way by a supernatural being, who, for some unknown, and unknowable (self-explanatory, I think….) reason, decided that we are “special”, and gave us, and only us, the knowledge we have, and our very lives. This, of course, is rather hard to believe, as it doesn’t really account for much of what is observable truth in Reality, being, as it is, complete speculation, devoid of any concrete evidence to support it…..

“There is no conclusive evidence that there is life after death. There is also no real evidence to the contrary. Soon enough, you will know. So, why fret about it?” — Lazarus Long, aka Robert A. Heinlein

I first read this aphorism when I was in my early teens; it codified, and made succinct, what I had already concluded about the major religions of the world, i.e., they’re a collection of unwarranted, and unproven, assumptions. What’s more, they are all highly unlikely, given the observable parameters of the real world. It became obvious to me, as it is to many, that what the religious folks were trying to get me to believe was intended merely to soften my mind, making it more amenable to suggestion, of which they have an endless supply. Preachers, priests, imams, nuns, all are quite willing to give other people advice and suggestions on how they should live, in exhaustive detail, for as long as they are allowed to do so….

Since I had very little desire to have other people decide for me how I should think, or live my life, I rejected the dogma they tried to force into my head, turning instead to other sources of thought about Life, Death, and Reality. I found an endless supply of folks who had thought long and deeply about all of these ideas, and gladly did I read all I could of everything I could find on the subject. In addition, I read science fiction, during the years when its popularity had just begun to climb to the heights it now occupies; sci-fi has always been literature that explored, and continues to explore, the very limits of thought, both in the real world, and the world of the mind.

As is seen by the first pearl above, these thoughts and ideas are not new with me; mankind has been thinking about these concepts since we first sat around the campfires, wondering at the beauty of the heavens we saw above our heads, and all around us. In all that time, no conclusions have been reached that seem to cover ALL of the questions we have about the universe. We still don’t have a clue as to “what is the mind”, or “what is thought”…. and if we cannot understand ourselves, what chance do we have of unraveling the secrets of the universe around us? Not much, would be my guess…

That, fortunately, does not mean it is impossible to know the truth, nor does it mean we are condemned to die in ignorance and fear…. I know this because I have learned in my time that our fear is a direct outgrowth of our ignorance; we fear what we do not understand. Now, if I were a God, why would I make people that way, unless for some ulterior motive, having to do with motivations that are human, not divine? No, it just doesn’t make sense to me to assume that we were put here with a deliberate handicap, just to see how we dealt with it; that seems more like an evil scientist at work than a compassionate deity.

“One must marry one’s feelings to one’s beliefs and ideas.  That is probably the only way to achieve a measure of harmony in one’s life.” — Etty Hilsum

Since I believe firmly in the Law of Conservation of Energy (proven true in this universe, to all our knowledge), and, I believe that our minds/souls are a form of energy we currently don’t fully understand, and cannot perceive directly, then the concept of Death is nothing to fear, as it merely means that my current state of energy will be replaced with another state, one I don’t currently have the ability to perceive. What that state may be like may be unknown, but that doesn’t mean it is something of which I should be afraid…. I prefer to look at it as the next great adventure….

So, when my father died, I asked him to leave me some trail-sign, to let me know how to find him in the next reality; he smiled at me, and said he would do that… and I was much comforted by that, knowing that our connection as family can never be severed, and that, someday, I would once more have the pleasure, and comfort, of his presence…. Now that’s something to look forward to, don’t you think?…. Much better than worrying that what I do now is going to determine what happens to me after I die, a silly proposition, at best……

“Do not think that man is but flesh, skin, bones and veins; far from it! What really makes man is his soul; and the things we call skin, flesh, bones and veins are but a garment, a cloak; they do not constitute man. When man departs this earth, he divests himself of all the veils that conceal him.” — Zohar

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I’d feel a bit of guilt, but, I gave it up years and years ago, and really wouldn’t know where to start looking for it… Besides, I told you up front there would be a lot from the archives…. I just wasn’t aware as to HOW MUCH there would ultimately be…. Oh well, it’s not like I’m charging extra, right? I’m outta here, ffolkes, and not all that late, either…. See y’all tomorrow….

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

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Fear is both tool, and weapon; use them, or be used by them….

Ffolkes,

“He had that rare weird electricity about him — that extremely wild and heavy presence that you only see in a person who has abandoned all hope of ever behaving “normally.””

– Hunter S. Thompson (b. 1939), journalist — Fear and Loathing ’72

toiletman

    Look! It’s a plane! No! It’s a turd! Hooray! It’s Toilet Man!….. Enough! I can’t do it….  I am, as the theme above suggests, NOT normal. It’s okay, I never wanted to be, anyway, so, it’s not going to hurt my feelings to be accused of missing out on that particularly noisome state of mundanity. Me, I could never figure out why it was so attractive, or so important for people to feel they were either on their way to becoming normal, or were already considered to be one of the conformist crowd…. Sure, I like people, occasionally, but, I sure wouldn’t want to BE like any of them…. But, no matter how I feel about normal, I can’t take advantage of it that way….

That, of course, is just the curmudgeon in me talking, which I can’t seem to stop from happening, all too often. According to the training rules for us curmudgeons-to-be, we are supposed to USE our skills, but, we aren’t supposed to make other people feel bad thereby, necessarily, although it is acceptable under certain conditions, such as being accosted by one of the stupids, and needing to put them out of their misery. That’s okay, but, generally, we aren’t supposed to load our foul moods onto other ffolkes; only if they deserve it, for which there are strict requirements to fulfill, to ensure they are a deserving recipient of our ire….

At this point, I’d probably do well to mention that we are still quite a far piece from reality, so, you shouldn’t be taking any of this too seriously, or trying to figure out whether or not my tongue is in cheek, or somewhere less appropriate than that. This is also a good point to tell you, the picture is from SFGATE, from a photo feature a few days ago, highlighting signs around the world with funny or odd statements, such as the above, and the name of the photographer is on the picture (in VERY small letters…) …. I have actually seen a sign very similar to this, in Beijing, during a visit there in 2004. Such signs were a constant source of amusement, as many of the English translations in the advertisements on billboards were simply hilariously mashed up….

Of course, it’s important for me to remember…. this kind of opening, as fun as it may be, does have its own potential risks…. For example, here we are, a good three to four paragraphs down the pike, and we have yet to whine about being late, or how lazy I’m feeling (somewhat….), or any of my usual techniques to draw your attention away from the lack of any sort of elegance, not to mention the lack of any sort of visible evidence of intelligent life as we know it. The risk in this should be obvious, even to…. no, I won’t go there. I’m not going to be one of those bloggers who insults my readers, just to show I can, or some other misguided reason….

I am, however, going to have to call a halt to this, even though we’re just beginning to have some fun with it, and it’s starting to flow nicely…. Too bad I’m completely out of any more ideas as to what to put here…. In fact, my brain is emptying out so fast, I’m getting dizzy, and had best take a break…. You know what this means, so hang on….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“It’s snowing still. And freezing. However, we haven’t had an earthquake lately.” — A.A. Milne’s Eyore

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

In keeping with the theme which has thus far characterized today’s effort, let’s see what the headlines around the web have for us….

http://www.theonion.com/articles/exxonmobil-chevron-locked-in-bidding-war-to-acquir,36561/

Oh. My. Gosh….. Okay, well, so it doesn’t quite have the same impact, or cathartic release factor, as the usual blasphemy I could be expected to come out with in such cases, but, I think employing the use of such a mild epithet will, no doubt, save me some hate mail…. Of course. that would help, if I actually got any…. Nonetheless, expletive expressions notwithstanding, I was a bit surprised to see the above headline, which, since you can’t see it all, says, to wit:

“ExxonMobil, Chevron Locked In Bidding War To Acquire Lucrative Pennsylvania Senator”

Flabbergasted, flummoxed, flustered, and, just a little bit surprised, I was, when I first saw this….  Then, of course, I noticed where it was published, on The Onion, and, so realized it was only humor…. pointed, sharp humor that accurately skewers Reality in America, but, humor…. In this case, what needs to be noted is the source of the humorous nature of the piece, which is rooted in the fact that it is probably true, though not necessarily for the exact companies named here….. You may be certain, however, that the concept itself is NOT completely out of the realm of possibility in the US Senate…. not in THIS Reality…..

I’m almost certain my creative juices aren’t quite up to turning this into a rant; it’s just too ironic…. which, coming from me, is pretty ironic, as well…. True, though, so, I’m going to go with my instincts, and go with an old-school pearl, a collection of pointed sticks to jab in the eyes of all those in our Beloved Ruling Class who are so diligent in their efforts to screw the rest of us….. Enjoy!….

“Anyone who has had a bull by the tail knows five or six more things than someone who hasn’t.” — Mark Twain (1835-1910)

“An idealist is one who, on noticing that roses smell better than  a cabbage, concludes that it will also make better soup.” — H. L. Mencken (1880-1956)

“I’m not against the police; I’m just afraid of them.” — Alfred Hitchcock

“A little truth helps the lie go down.” — A direct quote from the US Senate publication, “Communication Tips for New Senators”

“Disbelief in magic can force a poor soul into believing in government and business.” — Tom Robbins

“Not all the conservative are stupid, but all the stupid are conservative.” — Benjamin Disraeli

(The oddest part of this quote? Disraeli, by modern standards, would call himself a conservative…. To me, it just goes to show, ALL of them need help…. and, by that, I mean professional help….)

“This sickness doth infect
The very life-blood of our enterprise.”

– William Shakespeare (1564-1616), King Henry IV — Act iv, Sc. 1

Well, there you have it, ffolkes…. I’m thinking I may have been a bit too eclectic; most of these wouldn’t be understood at all by any of the people it targets…. which rather eliminates part of the point, doesn’t it? Oh well, there’s always tomorrow; I don’t think they’re going to add on any IQ points overnight, so we’ll have another chance to make a dent in their intransigent stupidity….

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I repost this poem at least once a year, just because it is one of my favorites, it goes so well with much of the material I end up producing…. and usually ends up saying what I was trying to say, better than I said it…. Enjoy, please…..

À Bas Ben Adhem
                   
My fellow man I do not care for.
I often ask me, What’s he there for?
The only answer I can find
Is, Reproduction of his kind.
If I’m supposed to swallow that,
Winnetka is my habitat.
Isn’t it time to carve Hic Jacet
Above that Reproduction racket?

To make the matter more succinct:
Suppose my fellow man extinct.
Why, who would not approve the plan
Save possibly my fellow man?
Yet with a politician’s voice
He names himself as Nature’s choice.

The finest of the human race
Are bad in figure, worse in face.
Yet just because they have two legs
And come from storks instead of eggs
They count the spacious firmament
As something to be charged and sent.

Though man created cross-town traffic,
The Daily Mirror, News and Graphic,
The pastoral fight and fighting pastor,
And Queen Marie and Lady Astor,
He hails himself with drum and fife
And bullies lower forms of life.

Not that I think much depends
On how we treat our feathered friends,
Or hold the wrinkled elephant
A nobler creature than my aunt.
It’s simply that I’m sure I can
Get on without my fellow man.
     
~~ Ogden Nash ~~

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

Y’all are getting the benefit of my laziness again today; a rant just doesn’t seem attractive right now…. I guess there’s only one thing to do, as I don’t have any goo Art to go with…. another old-school pearl, which will serve several purposes, at least three of which cannot be discussed in this venue without notifying certain officials, which we don’t wish to do…. so, those purposes shall remain secret, as long as y’all can keep quiet…. In fact, I insist…. Why don’t y’all have a seat right there, and listen up….

“Could you tell night from day?” “No, I regard all such distinctions as logically impossible.”  — Heraclitus

“Be ruled by time, the wisest counselor of all.” — Plutarch (46-120 AD) — Life of Pericles (B.C. 495-429)

“He who receives a good turn should never forget it; he who does one should never remember it.” — Charon

“The hardest part about gaining any new idea is sweeping out the false idea occupying that niche. As long as that niche is occupied, evidence and proof and logical demonstration get nowhere. But once the niche is emptied of the wrong idea that has been filling it – once you can honestly say, “I don’t know,” then it becomes possible to get at the truth.” — Robert A. Heinlein

“A free life cannot acquire many possessions, because this is not easy to do without servility to mobs or monarchs…” — Epicurus (341-270 B.C.)

“Is not life a hundred times too short for us to bore ourselves?” — Friedrich Nietzsche

“If one studies too zealously, one easily loses his pants.” — Albert Einstein

Well…. This turned out quite well, thank you; balanced, sharp, and deep. Plus, a new quote from Albert that I’d never seen…. I’m happy there are still a few left in Smart Bee for me to find…. especially when they’re like this, and help to create a fine pearl…

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

Wow… I got so jazzed about the potential to be finished, I forgot to close it out…. Now I haven’t a clue as to what to say here; two minutes ago I had it all planned out, but, after going back to edit, it went away, to whatever place in my mind where such ideas go to cry themselves to sleep…. Not a particularly rational image, but, poignant…. Any who, it’s done, such as it is, so, I’m outta here….. 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

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Maybe we should use another connotation of “stiff”…..

Ffolkes,

“The supreme irony of life is hardly anyone ever gets out of it alive.” — Robert Heinlein
portly puffin


Ffolkes, I don’t know about y’all, but, it’s my considered opinion that’s one damn silly looking puffin. Between the fat little body (which only appears that way; he’s actually about right for a seabird living in the cold Atlantic ocean…), the mouthful of dead fishies, (which goes to show it’s a pretty efficient fisher….), and that silly expression (do birds really HAVE expressions? If so, how do they do that without eyebrows?) Most importantly, why am I even THINKING about any of this, when I’ve got a Pearl to write?….

Oh well, such is life here at ECR…. I should probably tell you the picture came from the London Daily Telegraph, out of a weekly feature of theirs, called the Animal Pictures of the Week…. There are always some good shots in there, but, this one was irresistible…. If it wasn’t a wild creature, you’d want to take this little guy home with you, wouldn’t you? I know I would; he’s about as cute as can be….. Of course, no wild creature should ever be caged, in my opinion, nor made into a “pet”…

I do enjoy going to the zoo, but, in my heart, I grieve the entire time, for the loss of freedom for creatures who are made to live in the wild. I always end up sad, feeling their sadness, too, the sorrow felt by all those prisoners, of Mankind’s overbearing, completely misplaced sense of entitlement, SUPPOSEDLY given him by that first part in the Bible, that manual of idiocy spawned by a number of fanatical fear mongers over the course of centuries, wherein some asshole made the absolutely false statement that convinced everyone that we have “dominion” over the other creatures with whom we live…. It is especially hard for me to watch the large predators, such as bears, or the big cats, who, after a time, become neurotic and crazy from being confined their entire lives….

I know, it’s probably a little early to start a religirant, especially when it’s an attack on a book revered by such a large percentage of people. But, some days, my anger, at those bloody manipulative assholes, who make up the whole misogynistic structure of modern religious thinking, is just too huge for me to keep inside…. Jimmy Carter made what I consider one of the most cogent statements I’ve ever heard, about how men have perverted even religious dogma, one that SHOULD have been echoing back and forth across the world when it was made…. but, nobody paid any attention…. It went like this….

jimmy sez

    It is a small step from treating animals like property, to do with as we wish, to treating women, children, and anyone who will submit as if they are of no importance, as if the rights of one aggressive, confused person are more valid than the rights of a woman, a child, or an animal…. All it takes is the innate cowardice  that enables one to completely abjure any sort of true humanity, choosing instead the path taken by religious assholes for millennia, thus perpetuating the myths and false assumptions upon which the entire society has been built, and ensuring that women, children, and animals will suffer the perils of persecution and cruelty from men with no scruples….

Ah me…. There is no doubt that I’ve created a monster here; I kind of wish I had an explosive nuclear device with which to kill it, but, it’s rather amorphous, without shape or form one may grasp & hold, and may be hard to destroy…. I know, we can always laugh at it; that always seems to work on bullies, so it should work on these guys, for sure…. Of course, then we have to deal with the mess they always leave behind, but, that’s better than the alternative, for sure…. In fact, that’s such a grand idea, I’m going to make a unilateral decision here, by kicking us completely out of the intro, on into the next section….. I’ll do that, right about HERE….

Shall we Pearl?….

“The only way to deal with an unfree world is to become so absolutely free your very existence becomes an act of rebellion.” — Albert Camus

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

I think I hurt myself, ranting like that before I was even awake…. Now, when I consider trying to work up the chutzpah to rant some more, I experience a sense of crushing fatigue, and extreme reluctance to get started….. In short, I’m feeling lazy…. To try to appease my sense of duty, we’ll put an old-school pearl in this section, then make another field decision later, when we get as far as section three…. It’s probably futile, but, it sounds like a plan to me, so, off we go, diving for dollars, or, more accurately, pearls of virtual wisdom….

“Men only learned to walk upright cause they put beer on the top shelf!” — Smart Bee

“Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty–power is ever stealing from the many to the few.” — Wendell Phillips

“The tragic lesson of guilty men walking free in this country has not been lost on the criminal community.” — Richard M. Nixon

“And we are told in the Scriptures that at the beginning of time the Lord  said, “Let there be light.” But I’ve checked this out with a number of eminent biblical scholars. The Lord’s complete statement was as follows:  “Let there be light. Well, maybe not all day.” — Steve Allen

“Sin is a dangerous toy in the hands of the virtuous. It should be left to the congenitally sinful, who know when to play with it and when to let it alone.” — H. L. Mencken

“A man will fight harder for his interests than for his rights.” — Napoleon Bonaparte, “Maxims” 1804-1815

Okay, so here’s the deal….This last little part is the perfect lawyer’s joke, as it takes aim at them from a number of directions, each striking well at their pointy little heads…. It doesn’t really fit the usual image of a pearl, but, it just went so well with the rest, I couln’t resist…. Here then, I give you our very fine closing pearl for today….

A lawyer shows up at the pearly gates. St. Peter says, “Normally we don’t let you people in here but you’re in luck, we have a special this week. You
go to hell for the length of time you were alive, then you get to come back up here for eternity.”

The lawyer says, “I’ll take the deal.”

St. Peter says, “Good, I’ll put you down for 212 years in hell …”

The lawyer says, “What are you talking about? I’m 65 years old!”

St. Peter says, “Up here we go by billing hours.”

– Orson Bean

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

First, here’s a haiku, fresh….

Complete

I am, at last, done.
Nothing more to say, not now.
I shall go away.

~~ gigoid ~~


Now, to give this joint a little class, here’s a classic…

Witch Burning

In the marketplace they are piling the dry sticks.
A thicket of shadows is a poor coat. I inhabit
The wax image of myself, a doll’s body.
Sickness begins here: I am the dartboard for witches.
Only the devil can eat the devil out.
In the month of red leaves I climb to a bed of fire.

It is easy to blame the dark: the mouth of a door,
The cellar’s belly. They’ve blown my sparkler out.
A black-sharded lady keeps me in parrot cage.
What large eyes the dead have!
I am intimate with a hairy spirit.
Smoke wheels from the beak of this empty jar.

If I am a little one, I can do no harm.
If I don’t move about, I’ll knock nothing over. So I said,
Sitting under a potlid, tiny and inert as a rice grain.
They are turning the burners up, ring after ring.
We are full of starch, my small white fellows. We grow.
It hurts at first. The red tongues will teach the truth.

Mother of beetles, only unclench your hand:
I’ll fly through the candle’s mouth like a singeless moth.
Give me back my shape. I am ready to construe the days
I coupled with dust in the shadow of a stone.
My ankles brighten. Brightness ascends my thighs.
I am lost, I am lost, in the robes of all this light.

~~ Sylvia Plath ~~

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

My reluctance to get started on a rant has not merely continued, but grown since last we spoke on this, above in section one…. Rather than subject y’all to yet another obscure grouping of pearls, we’ll go with some artwork…. Here are some pictures I’ve collected from the Net in the last few days &/or weeks, some with animals, a gorgeous landscape, and one brilliant political meme…. The attribution for these pictures is either SFGATE, the London Daily Telegraph, or the UK Guardian, which are my primary sources for news and pictures on the web…. Enjoy!…..

mantis howdyfrogmouth owlSolent News & Photo AgencyPOTD_Golden_Gate_2968182kget the lens cap eddiebrilliant Perry memewhat is that chameleon doing
I would caution you to NOT anthropomorphize the last picture…. It would be very easy, but, completely WRONG, so don’t do it….

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

Well, that was interesting…. and I mean that in ALL of its senses…. I’m not going to fuss with even thinking about how it turned out, as it sort of got away from me rather quickly today…. I’m trusting my instincts just to post this, knowing it could be the end of all my hopes and dreams…. Well, that’s probably a bit dramatic, and overblown as to risk, but, hey, hyperbole can be fun, when used with some care…. Since that isn’t going to happen around here, I’ll find my way to the exit, and we’ll all be happy….. Well, until tomorrow, when I get up, and do it all again….. See y’all later, 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

Featured Image -- 2780

Paint all of it in flesh tones….

Ffolkes,

“Never commit yourself to a cheese without having first examined it.” — T. S. Eliot

potd-owl_2925216k    Okay, so, you can see the expression on the baby’s face, right?…. It’s a bit hard to identify just what is going through the baby’s head, other than the obvious bit of confusion, and the apparent disbelief… To me, the face says, “What is this, and why is it looking at me like that?”, or something equally quizzical, but, much funnier…. The baby owl doesn’t look any more confident of what is happening, although it’s hard to tell with those faces owls have, just MADE for poker…. The picture, by the way, came from the London Daily Telegraph picture section, from a group of animal pix they ran a week or two ago, with the theme something to do with unlikely friendships…..

The expressions, though, are what drew me to the picture; neither of them is quite sure of how to deal with the other, and it shows…. You can also tell there is no issue of fear, only curiosity, and it’s nice to see that, especially in very young creatures…. It means they feel safe in their environment, and are not threatened by each other’s presence…. Creatures that suffer abuse lose their curiosity very quickly, I’m afraid, so it is easy to spot….

We aren’t going to spoil this by speaking of abuse; that’s a subject for another time; this picture is far too CUTE to be used to create such a volatile diatribe, which I’m sure it would turn out to be…. Nothing infuriates me more than those who abuse the weak, who take advantage of those who cannot fight back…. but, in light of the rather more uplifting nature of this shot, we’ll forgo any such ranting for now, in favor of just enjoying the nice feeling that accompanies such a picture….. It’s just too cool for words, in my estimation…. Of course, I’ve managed to use it as the basis for several hundred words, but, that’s me, and it’s what I do, so, back off….

Not too far…. hey! Watch out, you’ll back right off the wing, and fall out of the plane…. My insurance dude would be furious with me, so, please, remain in your seats until all the cocktails have been served, okay? Thanks….

As you may be able to tell, this is starting to unravel on me….. That’s what happens when we take off in one direction, only to find it’s a one-way, dead-end street…. S’okay, though, that’s why we have four-wheel drive; we just take off cross country when that happens, and usually are able to find our way back to our appointed reality…. It’s those rare occasions we DON’T make it back to the correct reality that tend to drive up the insurance costs…. But, what can we do when reality alters itself like that? Sheesh, it’s not as if we’re all Time Lords, is it?….

No, of course not, but, the assbites who sell insurance don’t care about all that…. Don’t get me started on THAT whole scam industry…. Insurance is one of the more egregious institutions foisted upon the average man by the monied elite, a completely unnecessary, unwanted, and unethical industry that takes advantage of people’s fear, to have them betting on their own death or misfortune, so that the insurers can make a huge profit…. If y’all think there is any OTHER reason for that industry to exist, please, tell me…. I’d LOVE to hear THAT set of euphemisms and logical dead-ends…. Sure I would…. I LOVE hearing bullshit until my ears bleed….

Okay, now it’s getting completely away from me, heading fast toward rant-city, so I’d better take advantage of the ending point I see…. right HERE!…. C’mon, ffolkes, we’re jumping off here, so we can get on with the rest of today’s Pearl…. Whatever this is right here, is heading for the trash heap, so, we’d best be on our way….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“The man who sees the consistency in things is a wit, the man who sees the inconsistency in things is a humorist.” — Gilbert K. Chesterton (1874-1936)

If I hear a single one of you ask, “So, what does that make you?”…. I swear, I’ll make you regret it….

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

“A good friend who points out mistakes and imperfections and rebukes evil is to be respected as if he reveals a secret of hidden treasure.” — Buddha

I am full of piss & vinegar this morning; it’s probably a good thing nobody else is around except Murphy…. Even HE is giving me a wide berth today, as the signals I’m giving off are no doubt being picked up intergalactically, thus keeping all and sundry at a safe distance from my person…. That’s safe for them, not for me…. The only danger I’m in is from my own intransigence, and if I have to explain that, well, you should just go on to the poetry section, because you’ll never catch up otherwise….

Below I’ve placed three article links, with a small excerpt from each article added just below the link, to give an idea of the thrust of the issues involved…. I’m using the R.A. Heinlein technique of gathering headlines to show just how CRAZY everything has become in our world…. For some reason, headlines seem to give the best overall picture, as they give us the highlights of the picture, thus showing the breadth and scope of the issues under discussion without having to burden people’s minds with such unnecessary items as fact, figures, or details…. A purely American invention, as is patently clear…. Any who, here are a couple of recent articles from today’s (actually, yesterday’s…) news, after which you’ll find a fine, seven-star pearl, based on the parameters implied by the articles…..

http://www.sfgate.com/politics/joegarofoli/article/Michael-Copps-former-FCC-commissioner-on-net-5626535.php?cmpid=hp-hc-bustech

“This deal should be dead on arrival. We have no business doing this after Comcast 1,” Copps said. “To take this footprint that Comcast has developed over so much of the rest of the United States and impose it on so many other subscribers and so many other areas … is totally inimical to the public interest. I don’t see any conditions that would be ameliorative of that, that would make it acceptable to the public interest.”

http://www.sfgate.com/entertainment/carroll/article/The-state-of-Silicon-Valley-how-lame-is-that-5626692.php

“The drought is real. A federal meteorologist named Brad Rippey recently predicted, in an interview with Wall Street 24/7, that California would run out of water in two years. The El Niño forecast for the fall is now described as weak, with minimal effect on rainfall. Droughts don’t just last for a nice tidy two years – heck, Nevada was once an ocean…… Rippey said that the average reservoir recharge rate between 2011 and 2013 was 70 to 79 percent, while the withdrawal rate is between 126 and 140 percent of average.”

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/jul/18/nurse-guantanamo-boycott-force-feed-prisoners

“One Navy nurse at Guantánamo had refused to force-feed detainees anymore and declared the practice unethical: I have come to the decision that I refuse to participate in this criminal act, Dhiab told me the nurse said……  The nurse, Dhiab tells me, is the first staffer at Guantánamo to choose medical ethics over military logic. Like all staff assigned to force-feed detainees, this Navy nurse was initially a volunteer. But when he arrived on base this spring, he told Dhiab, he encountered something different from what he expected: The story we were told was completely the opposite of what I saw.

There, now, don’t you feel better, just for knowing all that? I thought you would….. Here’re your pearls….. enjoy, ffolkes….

“Lamachus chided a captain for a fault; and when he had said he would do so no more, “Sir,” said he, “in war there is no room for a second miscarriage.” Said one to Iphicrates, “What are ye afraid of?” “Of all speeches,” said he, “none is so dishonourable for a general as ‘I should not have thought of it.'”  — Plutarch (46-120 AD) — Iphicrates

“He is the best of men who dislikes power.’ — Mohammed

“Times are bad.  Children no longer obey their parents, and everyone is writing a book.” — Marcus Tullius Cicero (106-43 B.C.)

“Liberty cannot be guaranteed by law. Nor by any thing else except the resolution of free citizens to defend their liberties.” — Edward Abbey

“The world holds two classes of men – intelligent men without religion, and religious men without intelligence.” — Abu’l-Ala-Al-Ma’arri (973-1057)

“Far more crucial than what we know or do not know is what we do not want to know.” — Eric Hoffer

“Liberty cannot be guaranteed by law. Nor by any thing else except the resolution of free citizens to defend their liberties.” — Edward Abbey

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Not much can be said about Charles that hasn’t been said, so, I’ll let his poetry speak for itself…. I find him to be even more honest than most poets, who are about as honest a group as can be identified…. That is what makes them poets….

Pull a String, A Puppet Moves

each man must realize
that it can all disappear very
quickly:
the cat, the woman, the job,
the front tire,
the bed, the walls, the
room; all our necessities
including love,
rest on foundations of sand –
and any given cause,
no matter how unrelated:
the death of a boy in Hong Kong
or a blizzard in Omaha …
can serve as your undoing.
all your chinaware crashing to the
kitchen floor, your girl will enter
and you’ll be standing, drunk,
in the center of it and she’ll ask:
my god, what’s the matter?
and you’ll answer: I don’t know,
I don’t know …

~ Charles Bukowski ~


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Here’s the deal…. Above, I came close to ranting, with a twist, then created a fresh pearl, which covers most of what we do in a day…. Rather than spend a long time searching out a fresh old-school pearl, on a day when Smart Bee has already proven to be somewhat balky, I’m dipping into the archives for a religirant, one of which I have not created in some time…. Can’t let them feel as if I’m not paying any attention to them, can we? Nope…. That would be cruel….

From 7/1/2012:

Fundamentalism:  an effective form of mirth control. — Smart Bee

Smart Bee is almost always right on the money, and this one is one you could take to the bank. Have you ever noticed this? It seems that in order to be ordained as a fundamentalist minister, one must lose or destroy their sense of humor. This lack of funny bone is one of the primary characteristics by which one may recognize this fortunately rare beastie; it is often accompanied by a very strong sense of hypocrisy, and a sense of entitlement all out of proportion with Reality….. and they get all upset and frothing at the mouth when someone (like me…) points out their hypocrisy, especially if the proof is obvious.

“I see little divinity about them or you.  You talk to me of Christianity when you are in the act of hanging your enemies.  Was there ever such blasphemous nonsense!” — George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950), The Devil’s Disciple

This hypocritical nature is shared with the fundies by politicians, bankers, and lawyers. Of course, the fundies dress differently than the latter three categories, who all dress the same, in power suits with white shirt and power ties. You can differentiate one from another by the type of accessories they wear. Politicians usually have an American flag pin on their lapel. Bankers, of course, have a diamond stick pin for their ties. And the lawyers will usually add a vest to the suit, or wear the scales of injustice on their lapel…… Although each claims they are different from the other, all of them are adept at lying with great facility…..

“The men the American people admire most extravagantly are the most daring liars; the men they detest most violently are those who try to tell them the truth.” — H.L. Mencken

This insight is quite powerful, and very true to Reality. This characteristic of the American voting public has always fascinated me, in the same way that a poisonous snake is fascinating to study…. they’re beautiful, but very dangerous to one’s health. I suppose the public’s calm, even resigned, acceptance of the lies they hear from the beloved ruling class and the priestly hierarchies is a natural outgrowth of the hypocrisy inherent in each of them individually. In other words, because they’ve chosen to believe in a certain set of lies, ie Christianity, they are only too willing to accept being lied to by their ruling class. It’s kind of pathetic, if you ask me….

“Instead of striving to be like Jesus most Christians would rather presume that Jesus was just like them.” — Callan Williams

I guess the most ironic part of all this is the absolute cluelessness of those who choose this path. They really have no idea how insane their beliefs have become; they refuse to look at any evidence that doesn’t agree with what they have chosen to believe, other than those (often erroneous or irrelevant) passages from the Bible that they will toss out with such finality. It cracks me up when someone quotes the Bible; they act as if just referring to that book denies the truth of any other source, like once they have referenced scripture, no other answer is acceptable…. when in fact, what they’ve quoted often has no relation to reality at all.  And the colors they turn when this is proven to them are fascinating…..

“I don’t mind being screwed, but the government thinks I’m a nymph.” — Smart Bee

Okay, I’ll stop harassing the poor churchies now. I know it’s dishonorable to have a battle of wits with people who are unarmed, but some days I just can’t help it. I look at all the damage that churches have perpetrated on society, and my blood boils, my brain ignites, and my fingers start typing accusatory dross and ironic drivel, without conscious volition. Besides, they certainly have it coming, and they’ve had lots of practice, at deflecting accusations, and at outright lying about their motivation. So, fuck ‘em, as we like to say downtown…. they’ve been doing it to me, and us, for a long time; now it’s my turn….

Man, n.:  An animal so lost in rapturous contemplation of what he thinks he is as to overlook what he indubitably ought to be.  His chief occupation is extermination of other animals and his own species, which, however, multiplies with such insistent rapidity as to infest the whole habitable earth and Canada. — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

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I suppose it would be fruitful, not to mention the whole “acting with foresight” thing, if I went back over this, to see if it floats…. “Okay, be right back,” he said with misplaced confidence…

“Well,”, he said with alacrity, “I’d say it will not only float, it will swim…”…. Where it might swim TO is a question I don’t believe any of us have  ANY interest in pursuing…. It would serve no purpose for any of us at this juncture to speculate, and might even cause a spontaneous fire…. I think it would be best to just to let it go, and see what transpires….

So be it…..  gigoid has spoken…. such as THAT may be.

See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes…. Even if, like yesterday, only ONE person drops by…. It’s a good thing I’m writing to protect the world, or it might just get me depressed…. Since I write to stay sane, which is the protection I spoke of, it’s no big deal…. Ta, then, luvs…..

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

Doling out a measure of peace….

Ffolkes,

Always be curmudgeonly. Don’t ever forgive. Go home infrequently. Just keep loose. Mostly, never opine. Pick quirky relatives. Stay tough underneath. Vote. Watch xenophobia, you zealot.

There…. my version of alphabetical alliteration….  Pretty cool, eh? I don’t think I missed any letters, or got any out of sequence…. If I did, I’m sure you’ll….  What? Hell, I don’t have a clue what it MEANS. I just wrote it. Come to think of it, I probably shouldn’t be so quick to claim authorship; who knows? Somebody else might have already done this, and I’m plagiarizing, for all I know….. Somehow, though, it’s a bit hard to believe that anyone else would take credit for something as lame as this…. not if they intended for anyone to have any respect for them as a writer….

Me, I gave up on that a long time ago…. I’ll settle for what I got yesterday, which was a comment stating one reader always enjoys my work as a change of pace from the news…. Yes, he’s a bit strange, too, but, it still feels good to know I’m achieving at least part of what I wish with my efforts…. To know someone is enjoying it, that it gives someone pleasure, is enough for me….

Of course, that may not continue, should I keep making up crap such as the first few lines today…. I DID think it was fairly cool in one respect, at least…. It was fun…. The challenge I set myself, to write something at least marginally humorous, using words that begin with each successive letter in the English alphabet, was accomplished with ease, so much so I was a trifle suspicious it would be good enough…. Sure enough, it’s not what I’d call classical in nature or style, but, there is a point or two in there where it approaches funny…. I particularly enjoyed the WXYZ sentence….

Wow! Now THERE is an eye-opener…. It isn’t apparent from where you are sitting, but, I have been gone for the past four and a half minutes, unable to breathe or talk, or type…. Being a bozoid personality does have its risks, which can, and did, strike anytime…. As I took a sip of coffee just a few moments ago, I got a tickle in my throat just as I started to swallow…. This caused a major disruption in my metabolism, with the most immediate result being that I damn near choked on the coffee, as it made every effort to go into my lungs, rather than down the hatch to the stomach….

Preventing that threw my whole throat and chest into massive turmoil, coughing, choking, and generally looking like the world’s biggest bozo for a while, as I attempted to regain my composure…. SIGH…. One of the things that they forgot, or deliberately omitted, from the manual is this aging stuff… A lot of the small little hassles that our bodies present to us as we age are things we’ve never heard about…. I can’t believe I’m the first old fart to have these difficulties with the aging process, yet we never hear about them when we are younger…. but, I know why…

It’s revenge, for being young…. None of the old-timers say anything about any of this stuff, except to each other…. We all complain about our aches and pains, when we are with our peers…. But, we never got warned, so we aren’t going to give those young whippersnappers any kind of help WE didn’t get…. It wouldn’t be fair to tell them, and let them write it down so it eventually ends up in the manual…. Fair to whom, you ask? Well, to all of us who are already suffering from the indignities of advancing age, and all those oldsters who have gone before, pioneering the way for us…. THEY had no warning, and neither did we…. why should we be any kinder?….

Okay, this meandering is getting a bit out of bounds…. I’m starting to fantasize and make stuff up again, which is fine, but, won’t get this Pearl done…. Today’s intro, in my attempts at trying a new approach, seems to have grown past all boundaries of good taste, or at least, good sense…. That, of course, isn’t anything out of the ordinary for us, but, it IS making this intro a bit longer than is handy… In fact, I’m going to have to…. Oh, wait, look! There’s the ending right there…. Good, now we can get on with this….

Shall we Pearl?…..

Will change the pebbles of our puddly thought
To orient pearls.

– Du Bartas (1544-1590) — Divine Weekes and Workes, Second Week, Third Day, Part i

[dignified silence]……

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Here, for your early morning viewing pleasure, is a classical, ancient pearl, whose contributing authors all lived prior to the birth of Jesus Christ, who, though not my own particular candidate for basing a calendar on, remains the agreed upon point of reference for the modern version of time…. essentially, all of these wise ffolkes were born more than two thousand years ago, yet their words have survived, intact, to this day…. Enjoy!….

“Human life nearly resembles iron. When you use it, it wears out. When you don’t, rust consumes it.” — Marcus Porcius Cato (234-149 BC) — Carmen de moribus

“The most virtuous of all men is he that contents himself with being virtuous without seeking to appear so.” — Plato (B.C. 427?-347?)

“Nullum magnum ingenium sine mixtura dementiae fuit.” There is no great genius without a tincture of madness. — Seneca (8 BC) — De Tranquillitate Animi, 17

“It is a difficult thing for a man to resist the natural necessity of mortal passions.” — Plutarch (46-120 AD) — Of those whom God is slow to punish

“Neither make thy friend equal to a brother; but if thou shalt have made him so, be not the first to do him wrong.” — Hesiod (c. 700 BC) — Works and Days, Line 707

“Time cancels young pain.” — Euripides (431 BC)

“In the land of the dark, the Ship of the Sun is driven by the Grateful Dead.” — Egyptian Book of the Dead

Okay, so the last one isn’t so much of a pearl as it is a small revelation about the past…. and where a certain band got their name…. Okay, fine, here is one last pearl to finish this off correctly…. I hope you enjoyed this little trip back in time with me, to gather a small harvest of the wisdom of the ages….

“No sooner said than done — so acts your man of worth.” — Quintus Ennius

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It’s a haiku day, I can feel it…. so, here is one fresh one, and a couple more from the archives….

Food for thought

Savory phrases
seem to surface from the depths
of hidden hungers.

~~ gigoid ~~

7/13/2014

A Moment of Haiku

Bare is the soul
   who will not see the truth,
even when the truth sees them.

~~ gigoid ~~

2/9/2012

Haiku IV

Time and circumstance;
all of us who are alive,
must pay heed, or else.

~~ gigoid ~~

4/19/2013

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“It’s awfully hard work doing nothing. However, I don’t mind hard work when there is no definite object of any kind.” — Oscar Wilde, The Importance of Being Earnest

This morning, Oscar’s ironic curmudgeonry from his most popular play hits me where I live, to paraphrase my blogging friend, Jerry Doby…. I had a rant subject all picked out for this section, but find myself unwilling to carry out my intent…. No idea why, just don’t feel like ranting just now…. All the emotional content necessary to produce one is present, and accounted for, but, I haven’t been able to find a proper headline to pick at thus far, and I’m not in the correct frame of mind to persevere….. Oh, well, too bad, so sad…. for me, not for you… for you, it means yet another old-school pearl, as fresh as I can make it, sans parameters to help speed the process, and widen our options…. Have a care with this one, ffolkes, it could get a little rowdy….

“If you live long enough, it WILL kill you…” — Smart Bee

“It is important to do what you don’t know how to do. It is important to see your skills as keeping you from learning what is deepest and most mysterious. If you know how to focus, unfocus.  If your tendency is to make sense out of chaos, start chaos.” — Carlos Casteneda

“Caesar had his Brutus; Charles the First, his Cromwell; and George the Third ["Treason!" cried the Speaker]–may profit by their example. If this be treason, make the most of it.” — Patrick Henry (1736-1799) — Speech in the Virginia Convention, 1765

(Okay, so this doesn’t exactly fit in with a parameterless pearl…. but, it was there and it’s always a good time to remind all you bloggers out there of our duty as American writers…. Socrates set the example, with his belief in the concept of the societal gadfly; I see it as every American’s duty to challenge the authority of the establishment, and these inspirational words from Patrick Henry serve perfectly as the proper and appropriate credo for all of us who believe in this country, and the dream of freedom and peace upon which it was founded…. There, I ranted, are you happy?…. I am….)

“…the value of the constitution depends on the good will of government itself.   If the Supreme Court rules that the Bill of Rights should not interfere with the important business of government (which they have done on at least two occasions), then the constitution is meaningless.” — John Kormylo

(It’s always good to follow a credo/disclaimer with a warning…. Keep a sharp eye on this Supreme Court, ffolkes. They’re beginning to show their colors somewhat, since way too many of them were nominated by Shrubs…. Those assholes, the Shrubs, and all those misogynistic zombies (think Dick Cheney, the Lizard King), or any of the other closet anti-Americans who support them, have a very funny idea of constitutional law, one that has very little, if anything, in common with the one we already have in place…. If you don’t believe me, ask them…. they’ve stated, in the papers, how they’d like to see certain parts of the Constitution repealed, specifically, certain entries in the Bill of Rights, and the junior Shrub is on record as mentioning his belief that the framers of the Constitution “went too far” in handing out freedoms to the people…. See, I told you I had all the makings  for a rant in here…..)

“Yes, there is Nirvana; it is in leading your sheep to a green pasture, and in putting your child to sleep, and writing the last line of your poem.” — Kahlil Gibran (1883-1931), Sand and Foam

“The majority is never right.” — Lazarus Long  (1912-)

“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

Apparent disorder is a product of control.
Apparent fear is a product of courage.
Apparent vulnerability is a product of possession.

Control or disorder is a matter of Analysis.
Courage or fear is a matter of Direction.
Possession or vulnerability is a matter of Positioning.

– Sun Tzu “The Art of War,” translation by R.L. Wing

“May you grow so rich you never have to eat, drink, piss, crap, wash, or walk by yourself, God forbid.” — Smart Bee

This is why I love the process of making pearls…. It started out parameter free, picked out its own theme, then stretched itself into the rarest form of pearl, a nine-star, with comments that add up to a mini-rant…. Bonus!

Man, I love this job!….

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I especially enjoy it when I finish in a timely manner, having created a completely fresh, original product…. other than the quotes themselves, anyway…. It must be the shoes…. If not, well, that’s okay, too, because I need new ones…. Your guess as to what that may mean is as good as mine; since it has NOTHING to do with anything that has gone before, or with anything being planned, I’m not going to even acknowledge its absolute irrelevance to the present situation…. In other words, what a load of crap! Hah! Gotcha!…..

Having thus disposed of the final piece of childish behavior I had left to get out today, I’ll leave you in peace… Well, once I’m gone, you’ll THINK it’s peace, anyway, because of the relative quiet and calm…. 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

Featured Image -- 2780

Tossing beans with butter, in a bowl….

Ffolkes,

Late, again…. Fuck it, I’m not even going to worry about it a little bit; whatever happens, happens. I’m too bloody grumpy to care, so, it’s just as well I’m giving up right out of the gate…. I have the distinct feeling that if I made any attempt to be normal, not only would it fail, but, the Universe at large would enjoy a huge guffaw at my expense…. with which, I’m sorry to say, I’m becoming all too familiar…. Murphy’s myrmidons must get promoted by merit, because each bloody one of them laughs harder than the last one, whenever they’re around at those moments I try for normalcy…. Bloody assholes, every damn one of them….

There, now that I’ve whined enough, we can start the day with a different tenor…. How about a bit of fiction? Let’s see….

Harry couldn’t figure out if he should knock at the front, or go around to the back door, where all the servants entered the house…. He knew, as he’d been watching all morning, screwing up his courage to approach the magnificent edifice, standing in all it’s Victorian elegance on the corner of Harper and Main…. Harper House, home to the rich, powerful Harper family, the original settlers of the town, way back in colonial days, had stood on that corner since its construction in 1802, by Hiram Harper, the first white man to settle in the valley. It was 1797, when he walked over Harper Mountain, & got his first view of the valley below, spreading out to the south, trees covering the slopes, with leaves gilded from the sun, shining down with strong promises made to the future….

Well…. that was…. something. Not particularly gripping, but, not too bad…. It sets a stage, and paints a picture, but, I’m not sure I’m happy with the flow, or the elegance…. Oh well, for an early morning throw-away, it’s not bad…. and it did get us this far down the page…. Today, that’s a big help, as my brain isn’t cooperating…. I guess I’m a little excited (and when I say stuff like that, I feel six years old again, but, hey, old age is known to cause its victims to display a retreat to a younger time, when we could actually walk to another part of the house without having to make a plan for the return trip….), because my daughter is coming by today, and we’re going to go to dinner with my son, her brother, and hopefully, his new friend(s)….

Since I am so excited about this evening, I am in a quandary this morning, as I just can’t seem to get going on this…. Oh well, this calls for the immediate application of an emergency bail-out method, and, I’m thinking, #4 is always the most effective, so…. hang on, and we’ll apply that…. NOW….

Shall we Pearl?….

“My atheism, like that of Spinoza, is true piety towards the universe and denies only gods fashioned by men in their own image, to be servants of their human interests.” — George Santayana

(I’m encouraged now…. finding that quote so quickly gives me hope for the rest of this mess…. I hope it’s an indication that Murphy has taken his leave for now, and the rest of this will be left alone…. we can always hope, can’t we?…. Onward, with new bravery…. Huzzah!…..)

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http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Expert-witness-in-toy-gun-case-has-history-of-5614736.php

When I saw this, I became somewhat depressed…. It’s absolute truth; you can tell. This guy, this “expert witness” is nothing more than a shill, whom the courts and the police have been using to defend the indefensible for years….. In those instances where officers use their weapons, this guy has been set up as a final judge of the events that lead up to the incidents, whose word is the equivalent to law, in essence, as it is given more credence than even scientific evidence…. which is a crock, and they know it…. It’s a disturbing thing to find out, as it gives more evidence of how the courts, the police, and the government at large is ignoring or obstructing the issue of police militarization, one I see as a distinctly egregious problem, and one that really NEEDS to be watched….

In fact, this whole idea, of having such an obviously biased individual being given priority in court, makes me so angry, I’m having trouble organizing my arguments…. There are just SO MANY moral and ethical objections to such an event, I can’t decide where to begin…. So, instead, I’ll ask you to read the article, and make your own arguments…. It isn’t hard, particularly…. they are so fucking OBVIOUSLY prejudiced, you’ll find some objections, I’m sure…. Me, I’m going to raid the archives, for something that won’t make my stomach so damned upset, or at least, that won’t offend my sensibilities so badly….

Ah, here we go….. y’all enjoy this, ffolkes, I’m going to go calm down for a few minutes, before I try to deal with poetry…..

From 12/22/2012, a very numerological day…. It’s almost a poem, stated out loud…. One two, two two, two oh one two…. pretty cool, eh? Okay, I’ll stop now…. read on, ffolkes, it’s a fun one… (a Funyun?….):

“Unknowingly, we plow the dust of stars, blown about us by the wind, and drink the universe in a glass of rain.” — Ihab Hassan

What a beautiful line! I wasn’t sure when I saved it last night just what kind of pearl it would make, but it creates such a beautiful image in the mind, I couldn’t resist. I suppose it makes a fine contrast to how I feel just now, and as such, can be used to demonstrate how our attitudes are under our control, if we but choose to assume it…..

I feel like shit, emotionally, for various reasons, and that is reflected in my attitude toward the day; I don’t want to face it. I’d like to be able to just turn it all off, and go visit a friend somewhere far away. But, being stuck here, waiting for relief from my financial limitations, keeps me on the edge of depression, as well as keeping me in place…. If only for the time it takes to read, and contemplate this line, beauty takes over, and my thoughts and attitude undergo a marked change for the better. All it takes is a reminder of what we always have as creatures of this reality, our potential for grace.

“Grace”. Interesting word, that…. I like what it implies, the feeling of being connected to the universe, and enjoying that tie for the joy it can bring. To live in grace means to act rightly, surrounding oneself with beauty, increasing the joy in life by living it well, passionately, with compassion and humility. I can understand how religious folks would seek to receive such from the practice of their faith, though I can’t agree with them about exactly where grace comes from. They seem to believe that it is something given to them, as a reward for their faith, when in reality, it is something they have to learn to give, and can only be found inside themselves, because that is where it always is…. It just isn’t always free to let itself be known….

“The supreme irony of life is hardly anyone ever gets out of it alive.” — Robert Heinlein

Perspective…. the proper perspective can be hard to find, and it is good when such can be provided for us by a simple phrase, like this one, and the first one, above. The first phrase tells us to remember there are two sides to life, and only one side is inherently painful. This quote, from the Grand Master, is a reminder to SEEK perspective, and is one nobody should ever lose track of, as it is universally applicable. One may, at least temporarily, find ways to avoid paying taxes, but there is no avoiding death…. none.

Mere contemplation of our own death is a sure way to gain perspective. It may not always be the most amenable, or comfortable perspective, but it is the most truthful that can be acquired, without exception. Nothing will ground us better than thinking about our own demise, as there is no room for anything but truth when dealing with the whole concept. Anything less than the truth just fails to compute….. Not the most comforting line of thought, unless one has learned not to fear death, but, who is ever very successful at that? I mean, that’s why there are so many different religions out there, all offering their own way of dealing with that fear…. they’re just not very good at it. Well, not very truthful, anyway….

“Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.” — W. W. Zeige

I’m not sure whether I can truthfully classify this as a pearl. The criteria for that decision  are pretty loose, all in all, so it will fit in that respect. But, I do rather like to make some valid point, and this one doesn’t seem to have one I can find offhand. We humans spend a lot of our mental energy on stuff like this, which may be a clue as to the whole problem of the inability of so many of us to cope with reality without some kind of crutch, or without letting someone else do our thinking for us. That isn’t a danger for me, thank goodness, but most of humanity seems to fall into that pattern, and that, in itself, presents me with perspective issues, as mine differs radically from most everyone in the mainstream of society.

Oh, there are a lot more ffolkes such as myself out there; WordPress is proof enough of that. But, the major percentage of the population of this country generally prefers not to have to exercise their mental muscles any more than is absolutely necessary. Whether the inertial momentum that is built up by such a large percentage is amenable to adjustment remains to be seen, and all we can do is our best, to spread the virus of rational thought as far as we can….. “You’re our only hope, Obi-wan!”……

“I feel better about world problems now!” — Zippy the Pinhead

And, so do I! Shall we move on?…..

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I’m not sure yet what will go here, so, you’ll just have to wait…. Hey, I’m waiting, too!…. Okay, waiting done…. If you’ve been here with any regularity, you’ll know who I will pick, for, when there is any question about it, I always turn to her…. It’s Emily, of course…. writing on a subject very near, if not dear, to my heart….

The hallowing of pain

The hallowing of Pain
Like hallowing of Heaven,
Obtains at a corporeal cost —
The Summit is not given

To Him who strives severe
At middle of the Hill —
But He who has achieved the Top —
All — is the price of All —
     
~~Emily Dickinson ~~

emily icon
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This old school pearl has been collected with parameters that should, hopefully, cause some fairly steady bleeding among our Beloved Ruling Class, should any of them happen to see it…. I found the first couple of pearls sitting here, having obviously been collected previously, with that in mind… Well, so be it…. I never block any of my impulses, if I can keep from doing so…. and this one will, no doubt, be a good one, pointed and sharp, just the way I like them…. Enjoy, ffolkes…. I intend to….. Oh, also…. this will be a rare pearl, a nine-star, just because, when I use nine, the pattern of the wounds makes such a lovely design on their bodies….

“Integrity without knowledge is weak and useless, and knowledge without integrity is dangerous and dreadful.” — Samuel Johnson

(I know…. I said this pearl would be taking shots at the BRC, and asininnies in general…. But, read that line again, and tell me you don’t automatically think of politicians…. I know I do, because the phrase accurately describes no other segment of our society better, than it does those whom we have elected…. Sad, I know, but, all too true….)

“Most people seem to think that trampling individual rights is OK if it is “for the good of society as a whole.”  However, society is but a large number of individuals, and how can harming the individual parts better the whole?” — Andrew Ford, forda@agcs.com

“The First Amendment does not say that there is freedom of expression provided the talk is not `dangerous’. It does not say that there is freedom of expression provided the utterance has no tendency to subvert. It does not put free speech and freedom of the press in the category of housing, sanitation, hours of work, factory conditions, and the like, and make it subject to regulation for the public good. Nor does it permit legislative restraint of freedom of expression so long as the regulation does not offend due process. All notions of regulation or restraint by government are absent from the First Amendment. For it says in words that are unambiguous, `Congress shall make no law… abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press.'” — Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas, 1958

“A politician will always tip off his true belief by stating the opposite at the beginning of the sentence.  For maximum comprehension, do not start listening until the first clause is concluded.  Begin instead at the word “but” which begins the second, or active, clause.  This is the way to tell a liberal from a conservative–before they tell you.  Thus: “I have always believed in a strong national defense, second to none, but … ” (a liberal, about to propose a $20 billion defense cut).” — Frank Mankiewicz

(Don’t worry about the labels here, ffolkes…. Mr. Mankiewicz seems to show a bit of bias toward conservatism…. but, it’s still true…. liberal, conservative, whatever…. they ALL do this….)

“Heroism on command, senseless violence, and all the loathsome nonsense that goes by the name of patriotism — how passionately I hate them!” — Albert Einstein

“If God wanted us to have a President, He would have sent us a candidate.” — Jerry Dreshfield

“A conservative is a man who wants the rules changed so no one can make a pile the way he did.” — Gregory Nunn

“Curse all his virtues! they’ve undone his country.” — Joseph Addison (1672-1719) — Cato, Act iv, Sc. 4

(I really do love irony…. and, its twin sister, sarcasm…. When both are used in conjunction with hyperbole, well…. awesome is the word that comes to mind for me…..)

“Do not speak of what men deserve.   For we each of us deserve everything, every luxury that was ever piled in the tombs of the dead Kings, and we each of us deserve nothing, not a mouthful of bread in hunger. Have we not eaten while another starved?  Will you punish us for that?  Will you reward us for  the virtue of starving while others ate?  No man earns punishment, no man earns reward.  Free your mind of the idea of *deserving*, of *earning*, and  you will begin to be able to think.” — Odo, The Prison Letters (Ursula LeGuin, _The Dispossessed_)

I probably don’t need to mention (to this crowd…) that, learning to think in this fashion makes it much simpler to perceive the lies and oppression that the BRC and Asininnies spread around like the clap…. with exactly the same effect on society as that dreaded bacteria has on an individual, if not treated…. sickness, isolation, loss of self and others, and eventual death, from either the disease itself, or the loneliness it can engender in its victims….. Sadly, most of society hasn’t even a clue they’ve been infected by their own leaders, so, no treatment is even considered necessary…. which, as noted, will eventually lead to…. what was that? Oh, yeah….. DEATH….

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It may not be the best Pearl I’ve ever done, but, it has the one primary characteristic that makes it good enough…. it’s done. I can’t do any more damage to it; it’s already dead. So, I’m going to post the corpus, and hope for the best before it starts to deteriorate…. At least I know it won’t smell bad…. at least, not until the technology advances to the point of making what we see on our comps complete with information for the other senses…. i.e. “sensies”, Virtual Reality complete with smells, touch, sounds, sights, and tastes….. Boy, once that happens, we all will need to be more careful about what we leave lying around, won’t we?  Until then, this will do…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes, if I’m not in jail….

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

A cornucopia of digital abundance….

Ffolkes,

Some days are tougher than others…. we all know this….. However, the knowledge of this doesn’t seem, somehow, to make it any less hard to get up on those tougher days. It’s supposed to do so, but, it doesn’t…. Also, I have to say, I am still somewhat disgruntled over being disabled; having been athletically active most of my life, up to the age of 45 or so, it’s tough to swallow having to maintain the policy of spending my time, virtually ALL of it, thinking of ways to AVOID making my pain worse than it always is…. It’s lowering, less than dignified, and, worst of all, makes me grumpy….

That being said, today may be classified as one of the tough ones…. As I type, my pain level is slowly rising from where it was when I awoke, at about 5 or 6 on the usual scale of 10….. I keep shifting, as I can, to relieve it, and get up every couple minutes to stretch a bit…. but, I don’t think it will matter much today; it’s just going to hurt. So, I’m going to try to concentrate long enough to do this, while consuming all the extra drugs I can tolerate without killing myself…. By the time I’m done with this, I should be fairly oblivious, or, even better, unconscious….

Ah well, such is life…. thankfully, axiom # 2 of Peruaosophy, (“The Nature of the Universe is Change, etc…..”), provides me with sufficient reason to keep from falling all the way into despair; this WILL change, as the Universe moves along its path to wherever it is going…. The pain, if I can keep from doing anything to make it worse, WILL get better after a while, and life will go on, perhaps with a bit more aplomb than I’m able to appreciate just now. All I have to do is hang on to that little fact, and all will be well, in the end…..

With that in mind, I’m ending this here, well before I usually do, so I can get on with the meat of the matter…. Also, I can’t think of anything else to say for this, other than, enjoy whatever comes today, ffolkes… it cost me a lot to post it….

Shall we Pearl?….

“I can read your mind, and you should be ashamed of yourself.” — Smart Bee

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Ranting today, while indubitably going on uninterrupted in my mind, as long as I am awake today, is pretty much out of the question; sitting long enough to type a thousand words in a row isn’t going to happen…. This means today you’ll have to settle for old-school pearls…. I’m going so far as to make them random, harlequin style, to make it faster yet….. Let’s see if Smart Bee is in a good mood today….

(I know, it’s software, but, like everything in this universe made by the hand of Man, software tends to display a number of humanity’s more obvious characteristics, such as random emotional outbursts, occasional serenity, unpredictable responses to given stimuli, and a whole lot of nonsense…. After all, the code is written by people who refer to the planet Earth as the Big Blue Room…. which is defined as everything on the other side of the door where their computer lives…..)  Enjoy!

“Dionysius the Elder, being asked whether he was at leisure, he replied, “God forbid that it should ever befall me!”” — Plutarch (46-120 AD) — Dionysius

“Those who cling to the untrue doctrine that violence never settles anything would be advised to conjure up the ghosts of Napoleon Bonaparte and of the Duke of Wellington and let them debate it.  The ghost of Hitler could referee, and the jury might well be the Dodo, the Great Auk, and the Passenger Pigeon.  Violence, naked force, has settled more issues in history than has any other factor, and the contrary opinion is wishful thinking at its worst.  Nations and peoples who forget this basic truth have always paid for it with their lives and freedoms.” — R.A. Heinlein

“Truth is a river that is always splitting up into arms that reunite. Islanded between the arms the inhabitants argue for a lifetime as to which is the main river.” — Cyril Connolly, “The Unquiet Grave” 1945

Start with what is right rather than what is acceptable.” — Peter Drucker, American business philosopher and author

“What would happen if the President, the Supreme Court, and all members of both houses of Congress were stoned out of their gourds twenty-four hours a day? The chilling truth is, it might be an improvement.” — Allan Sherman

“For a long time it had seemed to me that life was about to begin — real life.  But there was always some obstacle in the way.  Something to be got through first, some unfinished business, time still to be served, a debt to be paid.  Then life would begin.  At last it dawned on me that these obstacles were my life.” — Fr. Alfred D’Souza

“It is hard to free fools from the chains they revere.” — Voltaire

Well, it’s a bit choppy, but, it works…. Onward….

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Today, you get one of my old poems, simply because I don’t have to go look for it anywhere else, so it’s faster…. I hope you enjoy it….

Making Room

Our souls, they say, are like shapeless, infinite bags
in which we put all our pain, all our joyous wonder.
Broken hearts and thrilling love, riches to rags,
endless perceptions of serenity, and thunder.

‘Tisn’t simple, this spiritual journey to peace
memory is fickle, easily led astray;
darkness, ever lurking, without surcease
turning innocence to harm, from simple play.

Balance is the key.

Timing is everything.

Good can change bad, bad can change good.

Pain makes room for more joy in our souls.

The only power we need is the power to change ourselves.

~~ gigoid ~~


That went so quickly, I’m going to be really egotistical, and do it again…. Here is another one of mine, that seemed appropriate, somehow…. Okay, full disclosure…. I couldn’t make up my mind between these two, and THAT is why you are being subjected to them both…. Hah! As if poetry is a burden to you, or anyone…. Enjoy, please….

When life calls, ready or not….

Memories are all we have sometimes
to keep our sanity intact,
with learned phrases and subtle rhymes
lessening life’s vicious, vibrant impact.

Presently all seems composed and intent
in stark contrast to hollow day,
forlorn patchwork emotions of unheralded bent,
fill up night’s bower, leaving hell to pay.

Such vigorous and elevated temper
brings us rare moments to ponder,
filled with lessons all need to remember
lest base perception lose valued wonder.

Laugh loud when entropy sticks fast
leaving shameless anger in its wake.
Let bygones pass quietly into the past
reaping only what is left to take.

Final words of wise imagination
tell us living well’s the best revenge, it appears
ever eluding choirs and congregations
finally finding home, never buried in tears.

~~ gigoid ~~


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This is another time saver, with the added message that I hope to be able to pin down the Wise Old Pine Cone today for a photo session; he did commit, but, has been a bit flaky of late…. funny how that works, eh? Any who, here is an article from the London Daily Telegraph you really should read, not to be informed about something wrong in the world, but, something right…. It’s a report about a man who, after a life of self-induced trouble and pain, found his way to an inner peace that is a beacon of hope for all of us….. In other words, in contrast to the usual fare here, and in most media venues, it’s a happy tale…. I’ll follow with the document I found on Facebook one time, that defines the parameters of the place this gentleman inhabits within himself….

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/men/thinking-man/10875975/The-train-dispatcher-who-defines-what-it-means-to-be-a-gentleman.html

A Gentleman Is

    To my mind, the most critical characteristic, and the one the gentleman in the article obviously knows, is number 5, to wit: “A Gentleman is one who puts more into the world than he takes out.” It is one I hope will be said of me when I’m gone…..

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In the movie Robin Hood; Prince of Thieves, Morgan Fairchild, as the Moorish warrior Hasim, kills the evil witch during the final, climactic battle, by heaving his scimitar at her across a room, just in time to save Kevin Costner, playing Robin. His line, as he stands there, feeling much as I do, on his wounded, bleeding leg, is, “I have fulfilled my vow.” That is exactly how I feel at this moment…. I’m going to hurry now, to send and post this, as I want to go deal with my pain, with the application of hot, pulsating water beating on it for a time…. I’ll be back tomorrow, which is not intended so much as a threat, as it is an informational bulletin, of note only to those who have any interest…. On that note, which has a certain bureaucratic ‘look and feel’ to it, I take my leave….. See y’all around the campus, 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

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