Not the whole egg!! Just use the yolk….

Ffolkes,

This one’s going to be a tough one, ffolkes, I can tell already….. I got beau coups sleep, and am up a little late, but, not too bad; that isn’t the issue. The issue, damn it, is my brain, which seems to have decided to take a holiday without any notice, leaving me in the lurch for this morning’s Pearl….

Yep, I have very few, if any, brain cells that are functioning as anything other than space fillers; whenever I try to think of something to put onto the screen, all I get is fuzzy static, with no ideas, with no fresh phrases bubbling up from my creative wellspring, such as it is…. It’s not much, but, it’s mine, and it’s not working!

Okay, I won’t panic….. Let’s just see if there’s something else in there that will serve to get us down the page a ways, at least to the point where, perhaps, Murphy will take pity, and let my brain back in from wherever it went. If he doesn’t, well, we may just have to resort to the archives again….. at least for one section of today’s effort, if not more. I can already tell that section three might be of that ilk, as even collecting pearls for an old-school variety may take more brain power than I am currently able to muster….

Of course, there are those who would probably say that what you’re seeing today is nothing new for me; they are liars, of course. We ALWAYS have things under control around here, and I NEVER suffer from writer’s block….. And, to borrow a phrase from Lazarus Long, if you have the kind of mind that can believe that statement, then I have a wonderful deal for you, in a bridge. Cash only, no checks….

Let’s try this…. No, better not….

Okay, how about this?….. No, wait, I’m out of those…. sorry, I’ll try one more time….

How about them Giants, eh? Grand slam walk-off last night in the twelfth inning in Colorado, as the offense finally broke out after six games of non-production, to provide enough fireworks to win an official Coors Field game, 12 to 10 (an official Coors Field game isn’t over until both teams have scored 10 or more runs…), after five games of wondering just how many millions of dollars are needed to get somebody to not have slumps….

But, then, that’s baseball, especially in Colorado, where the game is different…. You may note, it is also an Excellent Example of a run-on sentence, perfect for the classroom full of budding young writers in need of a bit of education re: style, and/or the lack thereof…..

Well, that was a LITTLE better, but, I don’t think it’s going to fix this intro…. In fact, I’m pretty sure that by now, there is no further hope that this will EVER get to where it needs to be, so, I may as well just apply emergency method #4, and get on with the rest of this mess… In fact, that is what I’ll do…. now…

Shall we Pearl?….

Zeb: “Tomorrow I will seven eagles see, a great comet will appear, and voices will speak from whirlwinds foretelling monstrous and fearful things. This Universe never did make sense; I suspect it was built on government contract”. — Robert A. Heinlein, 666, aka “The Number of the Beast”, his final indulgent paean to solipsism….

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As I noted in the introduction today, my mind is NOT in its sharpest state today…. which means that ranting, as such, is pretty well out of the question. I’ve been known to hurt much more than just myself when I rant in this state; I’m not going there today. I have to do something, though, so I’ll do this…. I’ve found some good articles, and a literally unbelievable quote from a modern film producer, links to which I will provide below, along with a couple of comments, which makes this one of the new school pearls I’ve been working on…. Let’s give it a whirl, shall we?….

http://blog.sfgate.com/morford/2014/04/22/stand-up-or-die-trying/

This one really hits me where I live…. Mr. Morford speaks here of a syndrome of physical symptoms, including the ever-popular back spasms that hit about 12 on the pain scale of 10, that can be brought on by periods of long term sitting by humans, and talks about what a revelation it is for a healthy, well-conditioned human to suffer severe back pain, merely from having sat in front of a computer for too long…. which is a perfect description of ME…. Well, at least, a description of how I USED to be, up until my fortieth year, or so, when I first began to notice how my body was falling apart….

The article was written in Mark’s unique style, using far more of the dictionary than most columnists realize exists, which I appreciate greatly. His logical take on this issue, one near and dear to my heart, offers some new and uplifting points for consideration, and I found it to be quite a good pep talk, relieving me of much of my self-imposed guilt over having lost my physical prowess, upon which I depended heavily. I can relax a bit now, knowing there was little I could have done to prevent what I now experience, which removes some of my guilt, always a good thing….

For they starve the frightened little child
Till it weeps both night and day:
And they scourge the weak, and flog the fool,
And gibe the old and grey,
And some grow mad, and all grow bad,
And none a word may say.

Each narrow cell in which we dwell
Is a foul and dark latrine,
And the fetid breath of living Death
Chokes up each grated screen,
And all, but Lust, is turned to dust
In Humanity’s machine.

And all men kill the thing they love,
By all let this be heard,
Some do it with a bitter look,
Some with a flattering word,
The coward does it with a kiss,
The brave man with a sword.

~~ Oscar Wilde ~~


Next, we come to an article in Rolling Stone magazine, which consists of an interview with a film producer, one George R.R. Martin…. The article begins this way…. I lost the link, but, if you go to the other article from the magazine, you could find the whole thing…. All I’m concerned with in it is the following quote….

“George R.R. Martin sits in the Santa Fe theater he owns, watching the Game of Thrones episode in which Ned Stark is unexpectedly beheaded. “As many times as I’ve watched this,” he says, “it still has great effect.” — from the Rolling Stone interview

Excuse me? I am fairly certain that I have never heard of an unexpected beheading described as “a great effect” so casually, as if the experience of witnessing the excessive gore, the blood and guts, as well as the extreme emotional impact of a sight such as this, were an everyday occurrence, as normal as any other sort of event that we perceive. I’m certain, in my own mind, at least, that this kind of acceptance of such violence is a sure indicator of a society-wide loss, of the ability to be shocked by this kind of violent behavior…. It is as if such an event is normal, and only valuable as a form of entertainment…

Now, I don’t know about y’all, but, I don’t ever wish to get to the point in my own mind where the sight of a beheading does not shock my sensibilities in a negative way; even the lack of ANY response, of ANY compassion at all for the victim, even if fictional, is an emotional state in which I would never wish to find myself….

I haven’t watched any of the Game of Thrones TV shows; now, I know why…. I’m not going to pretend that I find the glorification of violence, treachery, unbridled avarice, and rampant violence used as a means of securing power over others, to be an entertaining way to pass time…. I believe the entire series to be a clear indicator of how little ethics and morals are a part of the modern world, and a sure sign of the decay of civilization…. Shows like this can be directly correlated to the Roman circuses, held to keep the masses happy, while those in power go about their lying, cheating ways…..

As always, if anyone has any evidence to the contrary, I’d be happy to hear it; that’s what the comment section is for, you know….

Next, I offer this final article from Rolling Stone…. This is an excellent breakdown of the most critical issues that are the operative reasons behind the loss of faith, and membership, being suffered by the modern Republican Party, as they continue to stuff their heads into the nearest piles of sand…. I’d go on, but the author of the article has laid it all out very clearly, so, just read it, & then we’ll talk….

http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/six-studies-that-show-everything-republicans-believe-is-wrong-20140423?utm_source=dailynewsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=newsletter

Ffolkes, I’m going to be nice here, and NOT rant on this…. I could, very easily, as all of this is stuff I’ve ranted on previously…. but, it wouldn’t help make the points any clearer, and could conceivably drive away some of my more impatient readers….. So, instead, I’ll finish this off with a five-star pearl, which, I hope, will make a nice ending statement…. Smart Bee is usually pretty good at this, so let’s see what we find…

Well, it took me three tries, but, I think these will do…

“If we do not believe in ourselves — neither in our efficacy nor in our goodness — the universe is a frightening place.” — Nathaniel Branden

“It does take a perverse form of optimism to have any faith in the news media when almost every time they cover something you _know_ about, they get it wrong.  Maybe they’re wrong that often covering subjects in which I’m not an expert?  Naw, it just couldn’t be.” — Grant Edwards

Like a young eagle who has lent his plume
To fledge the shaft by which he meets his doom,
See their own feathers pluck’d to wing the dart
Which rank corruption destines for their heart.

– Thomas Moore (1779-1852) — Corruption

“Any effort that has self-glorification as its final endpoint is bound to end in disaster.” — Robert M. Pirsig

“Everyone talks about reality, but no one ever does anything about it.”– Smart Bee

See? It’s all in the wrist….

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No ups, no extras, just a poem….

A Dubiously Soft Morning

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

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

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

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

~~ gigoid ~~

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As mentioned in the intro, even an old-school pearl could be trouble today; it worked okay for the five-star in section one, so, rather than push my luck in that respect, I’ll go with this old-school pearl I found in the archives, from a couple of years ago…. it’s a pretty good one, & I hope you enjoy it…. I KNOW you’ll like it better than any of the potential rants implied in the included pearls…..

From 10/21/12:

Okay, so there I was, cruising through Smart Bee, and these little gems popped up. Each one tempted me to begin a rant, or a discussion, but, none of them completely grabbed my attention enough to do the trick. They are all much too valuable to throw out, so I had this idea to include them as a “new-school” pearl….. Y’all can take the ideas herein described, and formulate them into your own pearl of virtual wisdom…. there is plenty here to work with; I’ve used many similar pearls myself to create unforgettable rants, or brilliantly funny forays into nonsense. (Sure I have….. trust me….)

“The correct way to punctuate a sentence that starts: “Of course it is none of my business, but –” is to place a period after the word “but.” Don’t use excessive force in supplying such a moron with a period. Cutting his throat is only a momentary pleasure and is bound to get you talked about.” — Lazarus Long, from Robert A. Heinlein’s “Time Enough For Love”

“In certain trying circumstances, urgent circumstances, desperate circumstances, profanity furnishes a relief denied even to prayer.” — Mark Twain

“In regard to disagreeable and formidable things, prudence does not consist in evasion, or in flight, but in courage. He who wishes to walk in the most peaceful parts of life with any serenity must screw himself up to resolution. Let him front the object of his worst apprehension, and his stoutness will commonly make his fear groundless” — Ralph Waldo Emerson, _Essays_, Prudence

“I figure that if God actually does exist, He’s big enough to understand an honest difference of opinion.”  – Isaac Asimov

“There’s more than one way to skin a cat, but there  ain’t no way to make the cat enjoy it.” — Jed Clampett

“Man is certainly stark mad; he cannot make a worm, and yet he will be making gods by dozens.” — Michael de Montaigne (1533-1592) — Essays, Book ii, Chap. xii, Apology for Raimond Sebond

“Once you can accept the universe as being something expanding into an infinite nothing which is something, wearing stripes with plaid is easy.” — Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

So, you should find it reasonably simple to do the same yourselves (creating a pearl, that is, not wearing plaid…) …. and if not, well, they are all fairly strong stand-alone dribbles of good advice/good observations, so you aren’t completely without recourse…. No refunds, though, we’re not completely without shame…. Remember, you get what you pay for in this world, right? TANSTAAFL….. (for the uninitiated, that is, There Ain’t No Such Thing As A Free Lunch….)

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Though the creation of this Pearl felt a bit choppy as it progressed, it seems to have come out okay; it will do…. To keep from pushing my luck, which has held together enough to get us to this point, I will take my leave, before anything untoward can take place…. See you tomorrow, ffolkes….

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

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

Which is Why….


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

gigoid the dubious

dozer3

Fields of nascent cogitation, fallow in the morning sun….

Ffolkes,

Feedle farble fristible farum! Or, as we’ve been known to say downtown, with no small degree of intensity, FUCK, FUCK, FUCK! If that isn’t clear enough, I can get more graphic, in a heartbeat….. Sorry, ffolkes, but, nothing relieves built up stress quite as well as a good curse, and, after the four days just passed in my world, relieving stress is the paramount task at hand…. “How can this be?”, you may well ask, as the last time y’all heard from me I was headed off to the indulgently hedonistic country of cruise ships, there to once again soothe my troubled spirit with the balm of overt consumerism, as is my wont….

That was then, this is now….. I should have noted at the outset of the trip, the very first item of note on the trip list failed to meet expectations, indicating a certain lack of cooperation on the part of the universe in falling in with my plans for a nice little four-day getaway….. a failure soon followed by a massive outpouring of chaotic events, along with some covert cosmic interference, with Murphy starring in the leading role, that of the consummate asshole…. Suffice to say at this point, the entire trip was one disappointment and problematic issue after another, compounded at the last by my body’s own frailty, to the tune of a $2000 medical emergency on the final night of the cruise…. and a lovely time was had by all…. NOT!

For the moment, that is all I’ll say on that subject; I am saving the details, and the major part of the angst, to put into letters yet-to-be-written, one to the cruise ship company, and one to my medical insurance company, outlining the series of events that brought home to me the futility of all of Mankind’s hopes and dreams, when the universe has other plans for us…. For four days, one thing after another went badly, to be followed almost immediately by something else going wrong…. which would be immediately prior to spilling something on myself in an embarrassing place, even if it was only something as simple as my own body fluids going astray…. Most excruciatingly upsetting, to be sure!….

I’m really glad to be home, and sleeping, as much as I ever do anymore, in my own bed, with my little computer here to absorb my overwrought feelings, and help me to transform them into some kind of acceptance, thereby regaining some of my hard-won serenity of spirit…. At the least, here at home, there is some chance of success in that venture…. For four days I’ve had every attempt at successful living thrown back in my face, burning hot…..

Okay, all done whining…. I’m sure y’all are somewhat less than riveted by my travails, so I’ll get on with something more entertaining, I hope, as soon as I can wrap up this intro section…. which, I see by the drivel above, has reached a minimum legal limit…. As such, I can actually just stop here…. so, I will….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“It matters not how long you live, but how well.” — Publius Syrus (42 BC) — Maxim 829
_____________________________

Any ranting that I do today will be related to the above subject, in order to keep the details fresh in what is left of my mind…. Plus, I haven’t kept up with what is happening out in the Big Blue Room, which tends to keep me from picking a current event to rag upon, more’s the pity….. That does mean a bonus for y’all, as I’ll naturally fall back into the default position here at ECR when this happens….

Yes, you know what it means, ffolkes, another old-school pearl, a group of small but tasty pearls, all in a certain direction, or implying a certain theme…. Sure, those themes may not be immediately apparent, even to the most discriminating of Gentle Readers, but, more often, they simply bash one over the brows, driving home the desired point with all the delicacy of a professional wrestler….

I am, as is already obvious, more than just a little verbose this morning, having not written ANYTHING for over four days…. but, I don’t think that will hurt this section, since I’m going to segue right into the remainder of this section’s contents by using the old magical phrase, “slick as Natty Bumpo’s Chevrolet sedan!”…. Or, as we like to say here on ECR… let’s dive…. Ooh, ooh, let’s go really old school, too, with poetry brackets and everything all mellow….

I knew, by the smoke that so gracefully curl’d
Above the green elms, that a cottage was near;
And I said, “If there ‘s peace to be found in the world,
A heart that was humble might hope for it here.”

– Thomas Moore (1779-1852) — Ballad Stanzas

“I readily relapse into my reflections on the uselessness of our education.  Its aim has been to make us not good and wise, but learned; and in this it has succeeded. It has not taught us to follow and embrace virtue and wisdom, but has imprinted their derivations and etymologies on our minds. We are able
to decline ‘virtue’ even if we are unable to love it; if we do not know what wisdom is in fact and by experience, we are familiar with it as a jargon learned by heart.” — Michael de Montaigne, Essays

In the vacant places, we will build with new bricks.” — T.S. Eliot

“As long as we’re going insane, we might as well go the whole way. A mere shred of sanity is of no value.” — Smart Bee

“Be not ashamed of thy virtues; honor’s a good brooch to wear in a man’s hat at all times.” — Ben Johnson

“We are never deceived; we deceive ourselves.” — Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832)

Beware the Jabberwock, my son
The jaws that bite, the claws that catch
Beware the jubjub bird, and shun
The frumious bandersnatch

– _Jabberwocky_, by Lewis Carroll (Charles Dodgson)
_____________________________

As with many of the classical offerings I include, this needs no adornment from my direction…. just enjoy….

A Thing of Beauty (Endymion)

A thing of beauty is a joy for ever:
Its lovliness increases; it will never
Pass into nothingness; but still will keep
A bower quiet for us, and a sleep
Full of sweet dreams, and health, and quiet breathing.
Therefore, on every morrow, are we wreathing
A flowery band to bind us to the earth,
Spite of despondence, of the inhuman dearth
Of noble natures, of the gloomy days,
Of all the unhealthy and o’er-darkn’d ways
Made for our searching: yes, in spite of all,
Some shape of beauty moves away the pall
From our dark spirits. Such the sun, the moon,
Trees old and young, sprouting a shady boon
For simple sheep; and such are daffodils
With the green world they live in; and clear rills
That for themselves a cooling covert make
‘Gainst the hot season; the mid-forest brake,
Rich with a sprinkling of fair musk-rose blooms:
And such too is the grandeur of the dooms
We have imagined for the mighty dead;
An endless fountain of immortal drink,
Pouring unto us from the heaven’s brink.

~~John Keats ~~

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Having stated above there would be no rant today, I feel obligated to keep it light… Plus, I’m still not quite feeling as well as I’d like, and need to finish this up, so I can get on with the rest of the day…. So, we again dip into the archives, for a pearl the was fresh the day it was posted, which was in May of this year…. enjoy!….

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This last pearl for today will be fresh, or as fresh as I can make it from old, unused pearls, that have been lounging around in my stash for some years now…. It should be okay, it’s all straight out of Smart Bee, back when I could trust it to run…. The point of today’s old-school effort will be as obvious as I can make it, but, I’m not giving that a lot of credence, and neither should you…. I would suggest you take notes, as it could be to your advantage later on….

“I have the simplest tastes.  I am always satisfied with the best.” — Oscar Wilde

“One might define adulthood as the age at which a person learns he must die and accepts his sentence undismayed. ” — Robert Heinlein

“Principles have no real force except when one is well fed.” — Mark Twain

40. Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a stroke of luck. — Instructions for life

“Cato used to assert that wise men profited more by fools than fools by wise men; for that wise men avoided the faults of fools, but that fools would not imitate the good examples of wise men.” — Plutarch (46-120 AD) — Life of Marcus Cato

All things good to know are difficult to learn. — Greek Proverb

“Was mir nicht umbringt macht mir streng!”  {What does not kill me, makes me strong!”} — Friederich Nietzsche
_____________________________

Okay, ffolkes, I’ve done what I can do, and don’t have any more in me, so I’m going to send this out to the email group, and get it posted before heading back to bed…. Whoops, better proof….  Not bad for a first effort after a lay-off; I’m going to press my luck, and let if fly with no further ado…. See ya….

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

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

Which is Why….


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

gigoid

dozer3

Patiently waiting for the flood waters to subside….

Ffolkes,

It’s an odd feeling, for me, to wish NOT to write…. I am facing the screen today, not with the usual trepidation, but, with actual revulsion. I’m apparently just not in the mood to vent, or to rant, or even to go pearling…. all of it seems counter-productive in my current state of mind. Even though I’m up at the usual hour (0500), I’m not filled with my usual desire to dump the core, where my angst resides…. Instead, my mind is turning to methods whereby I can skip the whole deal, and get on with the day, whatever it may bring….

Rather than worry about it overmuch, I’m going to re-post a Pearl from the archives…. This one is appropriate, though I’ve no clue as to its content; I do know it was first posted on April Fool’s Day of this year, so, it should have something worth our time to go back over; All Fool’s Day is one of my favorite days of the year, so I’m sure I put stuff worth reading in whatever I wrote…. If not, well, April Fool!!!!….
_____________________________

4/1/13
Ffolkes,

As he stepped aboard the waiting train, he turned to look back at her, a small, forlorn figure standing in shadows near the exit turnstile. As he turned, she saw him, and raised a hand, as if to wave, but paused, locking eyes with his across the platform. The hiss of the train’s escaping steam mingled with the hum of the crowds boarding, but all faded into the background, unheard, as the two lovers gazed, with searing pain, into each other’s eyes, hers now flowing with shining tears. She again raised her hand, waving once before quickly turning, and rushing away, losing herself in the crowd. With heavy heart, he turned, walked past the conductor, and moved toward his seat, leaving the past behind…..

Now that my own tears are flowing, let’s leave the star-crossed lovers to their fates, and get on with the day’s work, such as it is….. It may be a bit more work than I usually have to do, as I’m supposed to come up with a poem for the April National Poetry Month Writing Challenge, in which I’ve agreed to participate…. I just spent a few minutes, trying to begin a verse, and experienced about that many minutes of sheer terror and exasperation, as I was able to come up with only two lines before the well went dry…. two….. not a grand start, to be sure. I may just have to resort to a haiku for my first effort; I know I can come up with one of those, as I’m pretty confident of my skill with them…. justified or not.

But, that’s for later…. right now, I still need to come up with a bit more of an intro, and I’ve written myself into a nasty little corner here, with no apparent way out….. I might have had a chance, had I gone one more paragraph into the opening story line, but, I didn’t, so here I am once again, stuck for anything intelligent to write…. I don’t know how I do it, but, maybe I could find some fool who would believe me when I tell them I know what I’m doing, and get them to pay me for this…. That will probably happen just about the time the pigs are ready to fly…..

Oh, look! There’s one taking off now! Gosh, it looks so brave, outlined against the morning sky, tiny wings beating to beat the band, weaving back and forth across the brightening sky like a drunken loon…. SIGH…. Such beauty is uncommon, and a joy to behold…. If you can buy into that statement, I have a deal in a bridge you might be interested in…. It’s a good deal, and a great source of income, once the toll booths are put in. I’ll need cash only, though, no checks, and all deals are final….

Now that we’ve entered into the spirit of the day, I think it’s best if I try to steal silently away, into the dark morning light, and get on with today’s dive…. I have a feeling that if I don’t do that now, this entire operation is going to go down in flames, which always annoys the insurance dudes…. I’ll avoid that whole issue, and get on with it, forthwith…. Shall we Pearl?…..
__________________________________

Today’s Pearl is going to resemble the coat of many colors that gave Joseph so much trouble back in Biblical days (I think it was Joseph…. oh well, doesn’t matter, y’all know the story anyway…..)…. It’s just got too much randomness to ever achieve any real coherence, so I’m not even going to try to explain it all…. Below you will find a very rare old-school pearl, a group of seven quotes, freshly chosen for their very randomness, in relation to each other…. As is sometimes the case, the point that emerged is one that defies normal expression, and is actually so intimate, it can only be experienced on a personal level; sharing it would be unwise, if not dangerous to both parties…. So, just enjoy them for what they may bring you, and go on with a bemused smile, and my good wishes….. not that they will help, but, I try…..

“It is a far, far better thing to have a firm anchor in nonsense than to put out on the troubled seas of thought.” — John Kenneth Galbraith

“We view things not only from different sides, but with different eyes — we have no wish to find them alike.” — Pascal

“Silence can be the biggest lie of all.  We have a responsibility to speak up; and whenever the occasion calls for it, we have a responsibility to raise bloody hell.” — Herbert Block

“Je me presse de rire de tout, de peur d’etre oblige de’en pleurer.
(I make myself laugh at everything, in case I should have to weep.)” — Pierre-Augustin de Beaumarchais (1732-1799)

“An assertion produces a stronger effect than an argument, at least among the majority of mankind. That is why public speakers seek to hammer home their party’s arguments with assertions.” — F. Nietzsche, _Human, All to Human_

“It is a very sad thing that nowadays there is so little useless information.” — Oscar Wilde (1854-1900)

“..  Should I get locked in the PRINCIPAL’S OFFICE today — or have a VASECTOMY??” — Zippy the Pinhead

Well, there you go…. I don’t think I can make that any more obscure than it is, so we’ll go on to further adventures in literary suicide…..
__________________________________

Rhyming is better than lying….

It’s all too, too much, he cried
   I can take no more!
It’s all crazy, my brain is fried,
   battered, bloody, and sore.

Talking heads shout out hatred and fear
   jam for my morning toast.
Pointing fingers far, middle, and near
   enemies everywhere, almost.

Women, gays, and seniors fall prey,
   easy targets, slow and weak.
Convenient fools, wanting only to play,
   used, and abused, even as we speak.

It enough to drive me floridly insane,
   or want to buy a gun.
I may end up in jail, or in massive pain,
   but, oh, it would be fun….

~~ gigoid ~~


April Fool! This, such as it is, is the first poem of the month for me, and the first entry in the National Poetry Writing Challenge for April….. It’s not my best effort ever, but, it’s okay, and it’s almost a rant, in its own little way…. I’ll do better as the month goes on, I promise…. Hell, I’m betting tomorrow’s effort will be better…. Just for the hell of it, here is a haiku, too….

To write a poem,
hard as it seems to be, is
not impossible.

~~ gigoid ~~

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I have a bunch of stuff to do today in the Big Blue Room, to finish preparations for my trip tonight to Oregon. So, I’m cheating again, and putting in here an old pearl, from the archives…. I can’t say exactly when this first appeared, as I don’t organize them well enough to do so, but, hey, it really doesn’t matter at all…… From the vantage point of the future, I see that Smart Bee was particularly helpful this day…..  Enjoy!….
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A few random thoughts on the meaning of insanity, and by implication, sanity…….all came from one dive. Pearl after pearl on the same subject kept presenting itself for my perusal, so after a few, I just gave up & collected them. So here they are, all with a bit to say about those among us who perceive reality from a whole different place than you or me….. (My comments are in parentheses, like this one…. )

‘What garlic is to salad, insanity is to art.’ — Augustus Saint-Gaudens (1848-1907), Reminiscences

If sanity were dollars I’d be bankrupt. — Smart Bee

“I come from a long line of Southern psychotics and an environment where madness is currency and conversation is blood sport.” — Elizabeth Ashley

According to figures from the Justice Department, the average rapist serves only 5.2 years on jail, and the average murderer serves only 8.6 years. By contrast, the average time served for possession of LSD is 10.1 years, and many Americans are serving mandatory minimum sentences of 20 to 25 years for possession or sale of marijuana. — Smart Bee

(Insanity comes in many guises…… your choice as to which is real, and which is delusion….)

Avoid reality at all costs! — Smart Bee

And who (in time) knows whither we may vent
The treasure of our tongue? To what strange shores
This gain of our best glory shall be sent
T’ enrich unknowing nations with our stores?
What worlds in the yet unformed Occident
May come refin’d with th’ accents that are ours?

– Samuel Daniel (1562-1619) — Musophilus, Stanza 163

(Psychosis is rooted in fear, and fear assumes many masks…..)

I feel like one
Who treads alone
Some banquet-hall deserted,
Whose lights are fled,
Whose garlands dead,
And all but he departed.

– Thomas Moore (1779-1852) — Oft in the Stilly Night

(An accurate description of the onset of depression…..)

“Why ask me? I’m just visiting reality.” — Smart Bee

We now return you to our regularly scheduled program…..
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April Fool! None of the above exists, and we are all an illusion, alleged in our own minds….. Thank goodness! This day, being one of my favorite days of the year, due to its strong connection to the concept of nonsense and bozoid tendencies, is also a new beginning….

Today the future of this blog begins anew, as I will now be writing each day’s post from a different location, beginning tomorrow morning, with a Pearl that will be created on a moving train, as I speed through the Northwest toward Oregon… I’m looking forward to it with great anticipation…. Until then….. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..
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You have now been returned to real time…. The current date is 10/6/13, the time is approximately 0610, PDT. There will be no further messages today from this quarter…. Thank you for your patience, and your custom…. See you tomorrow….. well, that’s the plan, anyway….

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

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

Which is Why….


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

gigoid

dozer3

Calls to adjourn are always in order….

Ffolkes,
For the first time in a coon’s age, I slept like a baby last night. That isn’t to say I woke up every few hours to eat, or get my drawers freshened, or to play, as my own son liked to do at 3 AM; in point of fact, the opposite is true. I slept more deeply than usual, and didn’t even awaken myself to turn over more than twice, falling back to sleep easily…. This is good, as in a normal night, I’m up and down most of it, and struggle to get back to sleep once awake. So, it’s a nice feeling to wake up refreshed, at an hour that approaches what the rest of the world observes…. Strange, but nice….

It might have to do with being in love; I find myself to be quite giddy at times, and spend a lot of time figuring out ways to spend more time with her, rather than figuring out how to pass the time with myself. Or, it could be that my aged old bod has finally gotten over the stress and fatigue that has plagued me since my return from Europe…. I tend to go with the first reason, as it makes me feel better to think about that, than it does to consider how old I’m getting…. Not that getting old has prevented me from wanting to act like a youngster, one with unlimited energy, provided by the strong drug that is Love…..

My only problem, as I see it, is how I can use these feelings in my writing…. Oh, sure, I could just start talking about my lady; I have enough in me that I could easily write a few thousand words in celebration of the beauty I see in her, or about how much I admire her gritty resolve in dealing with the crap life has thrown her way, or the kindness of her spirit, or how much I appreciate having someone to talk to who understands me, and seems to like me anyway. I could, no doubt at all, spend the rest of my life voicing how I feel about her, and intend to do so, to her….. I don’t think, however, that would be of much interest to other folks, or even ffolkes, after the first ten thousand words or so… Even sweetness and light can be overdone…..

I could use my feelings metaphorically, I guess, which would fit in appropriately with the rest of what goes on here…. and, in sooth, may end up doing that at some point…. But, I have a small problem with writing about my feelings in this area, which has to do with privacy issues, not with literary ones. Our relationship is OUR business, and putting it out on the street, so to speak, is not only egotistical and tacky, but could, conceivably, be dangerous.

When writing about personal issues, it is too easy to give away information that COULD be used against me, or even worse, against my paramour. I am nobody’s fool, and I’m well aware there are dire wolves (as opposed to most wolves, who are strong, loyal, and honorable….) who mine the internet for information that can be used for nefarious purposes…. I have no intention of ever drawing their attention, or giving away any information they can use against me…. I know what you are thinking, as it occurs to me as well…. Some of those dire wolves work in Washington D. C., and are supposedly using such information to protect me….

I say to that…. Bullshit! If you believe what the politicos, on both sides of the political fence, are saying, that the process is “transparent”, and the information gathered isn’t being abused, well, all I can say is that I am sorry for you…. They are lying about this, just as they lie about everything else they tell us, and anyone who believes otherwise needs to have their medications checked, because they aren’t working….

Hmm…. how did I get from being in love in paragraphs one and two, to ranting against the machine in paragraph four? Oh, okay, I see where I turned left, when I should have gone straight on…. Oh well, at least I got an intro section out of it, which is a good thing, I think…. We’ll have to see how the rest of this goes, starting as I do with a full bucket of energy, rather than a leaky one….. Shall we Pearl?…..
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I’m in the mood for an old school pearl, and, as I am still driving, and diving, that’s what we’ll do…. This pearl’s direction, and any point it makes, will be determined as randomly as I can make it. The first pearl I find will give me the basic idea, and we’ll see what else Smart Bee can come up with in the same vein…. Generally, I find these to be the best type of pearls, both for me, in that they pretty much write themselves, and for you, as they are the least obscure, and most easily translated into reality, or, into something that can be used in real time…. Enjoy!….

“Don’t worry about avoiding temptation — as you grow older, it starts avoiding you.” — The Old Farmer’s Almanac

“All things considered, insanity may be the only reasonable alternative.” — Smart Bee

“Anyone without a sense of humor is at the mercy of everyone else.” — William Rotsler

“A gentleman is one who never hurts anyone’s feelings unintentionally.” — Oscar Wilde

“The difference between solitude and loneliness is the quality of the company we keep.” — Smart Bee

“How ridiculous and unrealistic is the man who is astonished at anything that happens in life.” — Marcus Aurelius

Ooh! Ooh! I just had a great idea, prompted by something SB came up with…. So, here is the deal… The six quotes above delineate the main thrust of the idea being presented, but, it is at a cusp, and could complete at least two different thoughts… Below you will find two more pearls, either of which would be a fitting close to the concept as it is… Your mission, should you etc., etc…. is to choose whichever one suits your fancy to complete the pearl for today…. Or, choose the other one, I don’t care… either one works, and I hope you’ve enjoyed this little pre-breakfast mental challenge….

“I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence, or insanity to anyone, but they’ve always worked for me.” — Hunter S. Thompson

OR

As half in shade and half in sun
This world along its path advances,
May that side the sun ‘s upon
Be all that e’er shall meet thy glances!

– Thomas Moore (1779-1852) — Peace be around Thee
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On mornings like this, (which is a damn lie, as this morning has never been done before…. but, call it literary license, and we can go on….), I tend to go with a classic poem, from one of history’s more famous poets. Today is no exception, in spite of my recent stats on readership….. In other words, I hope you enjoy it, but, since almost nobody will read it, my sentiment will fall upon empty ears, or some such metaphor for zero…. I like it, though….

Being the sucker for romance that I am, and in deference to the delicacy of feelings I expressed above, I went to find a love poem, and found two…. Unable to decide which to use, I give you both…..

Who Ever Loved That Loved Not at First Sight?

It lies not in our power to love or hate,
For will in us is overruled by fate.
When two are stripped, long ere the course begin,
We wish that one should love, the other win;

And one especially do we affect
Of two gold ingots, like in each respect:
The reason no man knows; let it suffice
What we behold is censured by our eyes.
Where both deliberate, the love is slight:
Who ever loved, that loved not at first sight?

~~ Christopher Marlowe ~~

The face that launch’d a thousand ships

Was this the face that launch’d a thousand ships,
And burnt the topless towers of Ilium?
Sweet Helen, make me immortal with a kiss.
Her lips suck forth my soul: see where it flies!
Come, Helen, come, give me my soul again.
Here will I dwell, for heaven is in these lips,
And all is dross that is not Helena.
I will be Paris, and for love of thee,
Instead of Troy, shall Wittenberg be sack’d;
And I will combat with weak Menelaus,
And wear thy colours on my plumed crest;
Yea, I will wound Achilles in the heel,
And then return to Helen for a kiss.
O, thou art fairer than the evening air
Clad in the beauty of a thousand stars;
Brighter art thou than flaming Jupiter
When he appear’d to hapless Semele;
More lovely than the monarch of the sky
In wanton Arethusa’s azur’d arms;
And none but thou shalt be my paramour!

~~ Christopher Marlowe ~~

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I had intended to rant here, and even had a beginning quote all picked out…. but, my angst disappeared somewhere, and the quote I chose deserves full outrage to drive it, so I’ll save it for tomorrow, or the next day. For now, I found this perfect pearl from an archived post, from back in August of last year…. It’s an excellent pearl, of its type, and should bring today’s effort to a good ending…. Smooth, if not short or simple…. Enjoy!….

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This pearl consists of a series of statements from Smart Bee (meaning they were found without attribution….). The statements form an old-school pearl, all pointing in a particular direction…. the test is to see where they lead you, and whether or not that is where they will lead others…. At the end, there will be one last pearl, which generally is the best indicator of where the rest have been pointing…. just let your mind go, and allow the pearls to point the way….

Definition of Terror: A female Klingon with PMS. — Smart Bee

If you can believe ten impossible things before breakfast, then you should join: The Church of Counterfactual Belief.  The Church of Counterfactual Belief has been set up to cater to all who don’t allow demonstrable truth to get in the way of their beliefs. In addition to creation science and the flatness of the earth, the following beliefs have been certified by Pope Duane as Church dogma: that there is a hole in the Earth at the North Pole from which UFOs come. That pi equals precisely 3.000.  That sex can be enjoyed only by blacks and homosexuals.  That Billy Joe Wilson (Hoopla, Miss.) has successfully squared the circle. That Harry Truman is still president, and doing a fine job.  That pi equals precisely 22/7. Several other important counterfactual beliefs are presently being studied, including Reaganomics, A.I., and that the moon landings were done in a Hollywood special effects studio. These will be the subject of a forthcoming Papal Bull… — Smart Bee

You will be surprised by a loud noise. — Smart Bee

Don’t need to be born again – Did it right the 1st time. — Smart Bee

When a person brags about his ancestors, the best part of him is underground. — Smart Bee

You buttered your bread, now lie in it. — Smart Bee

“Well, it’s no use your talking about waking him,” said Tweedledum, “when you’re only one of the things in his dream. You know very well you’re not real.”
“I am real!” said Alice, and began to cry.
“You won’t make yourself a bit realer by crying,” Tweedledee remarked: “there’s nothing to cry about.”
“If I wasn’t real,” Alice said- half laughing through her tears, it all seemed so ridiculous- “I shouldn’t be able to cry.”
“I hope you don’t think those are real tears?” Tweedledee interrupted in a tone of great contempt.

– Lewis Carroll, in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

Okay, I lied…. the last one isn’t a Smart Bee quote. But, it still points the way to the desired end point, so it will do quite nicely for our purposes. We may now return to our regularly scheduled program….
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Well, regularly scheduled or not, we’ve reached an end point, and no blood yet….. Bonus….  Let’s see if it floats, and, if so, whether it will stay afloat…. Okay, not too shabby at all. Good enough for the loose standards we use here, anyway…. Maybe today I’ll get more than one or two readers, and they’ll enjoy themselves half as much as I did in writing this, with abundant energy, and a, most likely, sickeningly positive attitude….  Ah well, Murphy is, I’m sure, hanging about somewhere, and will make his presence known in good time…. In the meantime….  Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..

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

Which is Why….


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

gigoid

dozer3

Sweet, savory, sour, AND bitter….. nice choice…

Ffolkes,
Honestly, I didn’t mean to wake up like this….. all crotchety, grumpy, and annoyed. But, then, I didn’t plan to wake up at 0430, with a ripping headache right in the middle of my forehead, either. Thankfully, a bit of coffee, a bit of worship, and all is well, at least for the time being, and I can think about getting this started.

Not that I’m brimming over with ideas right now; in fact, that well seems particularly dry at the moment, so we’ll have to see what happens when I start actually firing up the old brain cells for real…. Yesterday, I managed to come up with a decent religirant, and a hell of a good pearl in section three (you should go back to read it, if you haven’t…. it’s a good one….).

I’ve had to change some plans that I made yesterday, thanks to the unpredictability of other people that I failed to factor into the plans, so today promises to be another day of cleaning up after Murphy, in a sense. He managed to thwart what was on the agenda for yesterday, forcing me to reschedule it for today, costing me about $50 extra, so I’d wager he’s feeling pretty good about himself right now, having used well an opportunity for which he’s probably waited for several days. Asshole….

Can’t seem to pull the crankypants off all the way; they keep getting fouled on my socks, or maybe the lingering headache has something to do with it…. In the short time I had yesterday to read blogs, I did read one rant from one of my favorite liberal bloggers, John over at The American Liberal Times; he gave some pretty good shots to the conservative right in the political world, all with his usual mild tone, which he uses to great effect in his indictment of the idiocy generally on display in conservative writing.

I enjoy his fair-minded, even-handed manner of delivering these indictments, with which he usually supplies ample evidence of his target’s ill-conceived misconceptions about life, political reality, and justice. He also is quite steadfast, and stands tall and strong in favor of his ideals…. Fun to read….

Any who, I suppose this isn’t getting done what needs to be done around here, so I’ll quit blathering, and get on with today’s post. I’m totally unsure of what might happen, but, that’s nothing new, so….  Shall we Pearl?….
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“Go on, EMOTE!  I was RAISED on thought balloons!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

Okay, so that didn’t work out so well…. Though the truth of the above statement, as it applies to me, and my life, is indisputable, it doesn’t solve any of the problems inherent in this process, and is here only to indicate the extent of the difficulty I face today….. To begin a pearl with such a pearl is very un-pearlish…. trust me, I would know.

It’s a perfect ending line, naturally, but to shove itself into my face with the intent of starting off a pearl, well, that’s just, plain and simple, over the line…. Now that it is there, though, what can I do with it, except go with the flow, and finish it off? Nothing, that’s what…. So, here we go, with a supporting cast that will, hopefully, save this pathetic attempt at humor from blowing up completely, necessitating plastic surgery….. I like my face just the way it is, strangely enough….

“When you go in for a job interview, I think a good thing to ask is if they ever press charges.” — Deep Thoughts, by Jack Handey

“In Oregon, the State Legislature has come up with a State Nut. This is unlikely to happen in Missouri, since there are too many candidates.” — Smart Bee

I slept, and dreamed that life was Beauty;
I woke, and found that life was Duty.
Was thy dream then a shadowy lie?
Toil on, poor heart, unceasingly;
And thou shalt find thy dream to be
A truth and noonday light to thee.

– Ellen Sturgis Hooper (1816-1841) — Life a Duty

“Memory serves wise commanders.” Tz’u-hsi, 638 AD

“Luck affects everything; let your hook always be cast.  In the stream where you least expect it, there will be fish.” — Ovid (3/20/43 B.C.- A.D. 17) Roman poet

“A person reveals his character by nothing so clearly as the joke he resents.” — G.C. Lichtenberg

If thou would’st have me sing and play
As once I play’d and sung,
First take this time-worn lute away,
And bring one freshly strung.

– Thomas Moore (1779-1852) — If Thou would ‘st have Me sing and play
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I am feeling more than just a little lazy today; can’t seem to shake off the sleepiness I woke up with… so lazy, in fact, I’m not even up to Googling for a poem, and will go with one of my own, from the archives, just to save the effort of finding one somewhere else….  I know, really lazy, huh?  Oh, well….

Here is one to celebrate, sort of, the coming, and going, of spring, which, this year, thanks to the myth of global warming, has been completely unrecognizable as a  Northern California spring, resembling more something you might find in Missouri, or Uzbekistan, or somewhere odd like that….

An Old Man, Snoring….

Winter arrives with gusts of wind and rain,
  clover spreads green amongst the hedges.
Urban gardens quiver, and dream of spring again,
  gargoyles stoically crouch on corniced ledges.

Umbrellas sprout over heads shrouded and hatted,
  dotting the sidewalks in colorful profusion.
Urban denizens pose sketches, framed and matted,
  adding casual beauty to fill the illusion.

Hissing tires, swishing along with the wipers
  join nature’s orchestra smoothly, as percussion.
Dripping gutters sound gong tones, true pipers,
  a sudden roar of wind hushes all discussion.

Dreams of summer heat form the crux of desire
  as winter chills our souls from without.
Sitting in warmth, gazing into an imaginary fire;
  content to know spring will come, no doubt.

~~ gigoid

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The following is another display of how lazy I’m feeling today….. It is a rant I wrote back in January of this year, when I was still living with the constraints that come with living with no money to speak of, to wit: not enough food, and barely enough of anything else….. Things have changed, for the better, but, sometimes, it’s good to think back to how little I had then, and appreciate the difference…. Not that any of that has anything to do with this rant, but, it had to be said, to cover up my lack of work ethic today….. so be it… If nothing else, it’s a good rant, so, enjoy….
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“Is this an out-take from the “BRADY BUNCH”?” — Zippy the Pinhead

I’m rather hoping it is, in sooth…. if not, we all are in serious trouble, up the proverbial creek without a hint of a paddle. Not that it should be anything new or unfamiliar, as most of our history has been spent thus occupied. Of course, previous centuries didn’t have the distinct advantage of having either the Brady’s, or Zippy, in all his insane wisdom, as cultural icons, as well as ethical touchstones….. They had to make do with Socrates, and Plato, and stuffy old guys like that….. Aristotle was practically a rock star in his day, and remains a pretty smart dude, by all evidence, but I still prefer Carlin, I think, for the most cogent philosophy for modern times….

“In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the state and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense.” — The Constitution of the United States of America Amendment 6, 1791

For a moment, I wondered what my unconscious mind was thinking when it made me copy and paste this amendment into the pearl, as a pearl…. especially as it seems to be in conjunction with the Zippy quote…. Here I am, five minutes later, still wondering what the hell I was thinking…. It happens that way sometimes…. just give me a few moments here, and I’ll come up with it…. Aha! Got it! Naturally, I only needed to go back to basics…. The answer to the question of how the two quotes are related is…. Reality….

Aye, that’s right, reality. It’s what we do here, explore reality, and all its implications, ramifications, and delineations. Also, it’s temperature. Well, perhaps that isn’t the right word, but…. Reality, as is clear and obvious to the most casual observer, exists in varying degrees (hence: temperature…. see?). The degree of reality that is included in an out-take from the Brady Bunch is clearly not the same degree of reality that is implied in the Sixth Amendment.

I’d say, the Amendment would hit around 8 or 9 on the real scale, with 10 being the Reality of Amber, where all roads lead. (See Roger Zelazny’s book, The Courts of Amber…..), whereas the highest the Brady’s could hope for would be a 2 or a 3 on that same scale. They’re too oppositional in nature to be rated otherwise, as well as being on opposite ends of the scale of Relative Importance to ME and YOU…..

Now we get to the meat of this matter…. Of late, there has been a lot of public discourse regarding gun control, as a result of the media’s steadfast love of gore and manipulation. Another school shooting took place a few weeks ago, wherein some crazy idiot got hold of some firearms and used them in an insane manner.

This, of course, all morality aside, is still a reprehensible act, and, IMHO, most easily solved by just taking one of his own guns and using it on him, at the time of his crime. Bang, problem solved, and since he’s standing there over the bodies he has made, no question of guilt. In such cases, the why of his guilt should not matter; whatever it is, it is reason enough to put him down, in defense of humanity. The other questions can be answered after the children have been defended….

Sadly, there are two segments of humanity who don’t agree with this logical outcome. One segment is what I term the humanitarians, a misleading term, since it usually involves the denial of much of human nature. The other, of course, is our old nemesis, the BRC…. our Beloved Ruling Class….

Neither of these groups will agree that allowing people to have guns should be allowed, or that killing the killers is a proper solution for the issue. In both of these positions, they are dead wrong, and, more, they know they are. This serves to make their arguments more shrill, more emotionally based, and, in their eyes, more valid, in some strange form of weird logic….

“Everybody in this room is wearing a uniform, so don’t kid yourself…” — Frank Zappa

One of the most edifying parts of this discussion, for me, is how it makes it so easy to identify those who are wearing the uniforms, and from what camp they are from, according to their colors and insignia. You can tell the humanitarians, they’re the ones wearing the faux-camouflage pants, in support of the troops, they’ll assure you; they want the police to be the only ones who carry guns, believing, for some unknown reason, that police are somehow more moral or ethical than other people. (Of course, they also would have trouble if you asked them to define the words, “moral”, or “ethical”, in any other terms than those used in a philosophy paper they memorized in college, or in seminary….)

The BRC are always easy to spot, as their sense of entitlement provides them with all the armor against opinion, or law, they ever need. They want guns to be only held by the militia, (which they control), or the police (whom they also control), because it makes them nervous as hell to know there are guns out in the land, in the hands of people who would use them, for certain, if they attempt to perform their illegal lying, cheating, and stealing anywhere in their presence. It also makes them nervous knowing that they would be in danger for real, if the truth about what they do is ever made public with enough evidence to convince the masses to act…. They don’t want to have to worry they will be over-matched in firepower when that day comes along….

SIGH…. I’ve opened a can of worms, again, I know it….. I’m not going to claim to have all the right answers to the situation we find ourselves in today. Though it is a different world, technologically and culturally, from the time when the Second Amendment was written, deciding to abandon its precepts on that basis is not, and should never be, enough to justify any change in a law that is so important to the common man, the very people for whom the laws were created, to protect them from the self-same usurpation that is now being attempted. Once the law is amended, and weakened, the term “slippery slope” becomes very real, and a valid fear for those people.

To put a cap on it for now, I’ll say this…. Quite simply, I do not trust those who would take the right to bear arms from the people (added later: I reserve the same lack of trust for those who wish to amend, or limit in any way, the right to bear arms; ANY kind of change will ultimately be used as the basis for arguments designed to completely take the right away…). I have seen NO evidence, in history, or in recent current events, that ANY governing body, or ANY group, or ANY single person, of ANY persuasion can be trusted to have guns, and use them solely for the benefit of the people, without turning them to their own purposes, first. NONE. You can’t show me any, either…. Go ahead, I’m listening….

I have studied people every day of my life, and I know too much of human nature to ever believe what I’m told of another person’s intentions; even the best intentions can change in mid-stream, turning its back completely on any commitments made previously. People lie, they cheat, they break in their minds, and they can’t, as a whole, ever be trusted to act rationally on a consistent basis….. at least, not any more rationally than can I myself….

“In all matters of opinion, our adversaries are insane.” — Oscar Wilde

Such being the case, I’d rather keep my guns, thanks. I’ll accept the risks that go with that freedom, which includes the risk of bad people getting their hands on guns, and doing bad things to others. Don’t worry, if they do it in front of me, I’ll help…. and not by running away and hiding…. Life is dangerous, ffolkes, and one either learns to get along with that idea, or one spends a lot of time worrying about shit that can’t be changed…. A very unhappy state of affairs, to my way of thinking, and not very realistic in the long run….

“When the panorama of human existence becomes chaotic and confused, it is quite soothing to watch the sun rise in the East.” ~~ gigoid
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All things considered, this went very well, thanks to my laziness and willingness to cheat on my own standards…. Of course, if they are MY standards, then breaking them isn’t really cheating, is it? It’s merely utilization of the right to edit, otherwise known as “changing my mind”, a right and privilege none of us should ever forget we possess, as it can make the difference between success, and a handful of shit….

Sorry, forgot to hold the graphics….. “One cliche, please, with a side of graphics!” “Do you want whale sperm with that?”…..  Now that I’ve completely lost it, let’s see how it reads….. Not too shabby, all in all, and certainly worth posting…. Onward, into the day!…..  Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..

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

Which is Why….


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

gigoid

dozer3

Trite figurines in professional pants…..

Ffolkes,
Oddly enough, I still don’t have any idea as to how I should go about starting these Pearls. After more than 12 years, one would think I’d have a clue about that, but, nope, I’m still fussing around with different approaches and styles, all of which work, at various times, and none of which work, some of the time….. It’s enough to drive a sane man to drink, or a sober man to go crazy, so it should certainly be enough to turn me into a blubbering idiot…. Of course, there are those who would say, (unkindly, I might add…) that I am both insane, and often drunk…. They’re just jealous, though….

Jealous of what, I don’t know, but, that’s the way it seems….. Maybe it’s because, in spite of how it may seem, I’m always doing exactly what I want to do…. That’s something not everyone can say, isn’t it, now? I mean, most people wander through life, going to work, living their lives, but on somebody else’s schedule, not one they would choose for themselves, if they knew they could. This makes them feel a general sense of dissatisfaction with their lives, without knowing exactly why…. and they notice that I do not ever suffer that particular form of angst. It happens subconsciously, I think, kind of like how dogs know if you’re afraid…. these folks know when someone is free of influence…. We probably send out some sort of pheromone or something, that alerts them they are in the presence of someone who is different somehow…..

I’ve always been sort of a pink monkey in a room full of brown apes; it’s hard not to stand out in a crowd, when almost everything you say, or do, is markedly different than what everyone else is saying and doing…. Often, it’s an uncomfortable feeling, as the brown apes can get excitable when confronted with anomalous events, with a tendency to strike out at what, or who, they do not understand. Fortunately, they are also often rather stupid, and easily distracted from their anger by humor, or by superior reasoning, which is generally invisible to them…. It’s too bad there are so damn many of them, as they tend to clutter up the landscape, and get into everything, usually to ill effect……

Ah well, I can’t complain too much, I suppose…. Somebody has to be around to run the fast food joints, and I certainly don’t want to do it, so, I try to stay aware of the old saw that all creatures have their purpose, even if that purpose isn’t always clear to me….. Hell, as long as they don’t get any of their slime on me, I’m okay with them…. Just don’t ask me to hold a conversation with one of them; it’s too much work…..

There, I’ve been snide, and pissy, and prejudiced enough for three people, all in one intro section, such as it is…. I’d apologize in advance, but, it’s too late for that, so, I’ll just say, sorry ’bout that, and get on with the day….. I currently haven’t a clue as to what I’m going to write about, so it could prove to be a somewhat odd post, even for me…. Shall we Pearl?…..
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I’ve been ranting in the first section a lot, of late, so today we’ll switch things around, and go with an old-school pearl, leaving any potential ranting for later…. I think I’ll make this one a pointed pearl, which is to say, I’ll have one idea in my head when I search the dB for appropriate aphorisms to include…. You get extra points for figuring out the original idea that was used, and double bonus points to keep it to yourself…..

“The lessons of life amount not to wisdom but to scar tissue and callus.” — Wallace Stegner

“Sometimes, if you stand on the bottom rail of a bridge and bend over to watch the river slipping slowly away beneath you, you suddenly know everything there is to be known.” — Winnie the Pooh
(Pooh DOES have his good side….. in which he IS an Uncarved Block….)

“An idea that is not dangerous is unworthy of being called an idea at all.” — Elbert Hubbard (1856-1915)

“What is becoming is honest, and whatever is honest must always be becoming.” — Marcus Tullius Cicero (106-43 B.C.)

“Consciousness: That annoying time between naps.” — Bumper Sticker

“Although a cloth be washed a hundred times, how can it be rendered clean and pure, if it be washed in water which is dirty? — Nagarjuna (c. 100-200 A.D.)

“Hold every moment sacred.” — Thomas Mann
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I have vowed to myself that today will be the end of my almost three year hiatus from being able to print…. That’s how long ago my printer ran out of ink, and I have since been unable to afford to buy any…. I can scan, save, and fax or email documents, but I can’t print anything. Truly a pain…. So, today, I’m going to buy a new printer, as I’m done fussing around with the issue…. This means shortcuts in today’s Pearl, one of which is this poem, which is again drawn from my archives…. Too bad, so sad, I like it anyway…. so there…..   ;-)   I did write a fresh haiku, so that’s something, isn’t it?  As every day this month, this is for the April National Poetry Writing Month Challenge, with the updates to be found here:  http://www.napowrimo.net/ (I still don’t know if I’m doing this right, but, oh well….) (I gave up on making the logo appear on the web page; it works fine in the email version of the Pearl…. WordPress just won’t let me display it, no matter how I try….) (SIGH…..)

Haiku III

Inspiration comes
only when it feels it should.
Serendipity.

~~gigoid~~

Accentuated Lessons

Bold statements of calculated intent
Become common rule of the malcontent.
Avarice assumes such attractive wear
Beguiling deception, illusory and fair.

Grasping and pulling with ghostly hands
Legally proper in all the signatory lands.
Seeking and finding each vulnerable soul
Anguish as payment for exacting the toll.

Wraiths of commerce’s invisible dead guards
Still haunt the dreams left in sad empty yards.
While absentee nobles sit in stiffly elegant splendor
Served by sad-faced detainees in abject surrender.

Escape from reality is illusory at best
Often we falter and fail its daily test.
Only when focused on inner strength
Does peace stay with us for any length.

Peace lies within, always…..

~~ gigoid

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“Belief is not the beginning but the end of all knowledge.” — Goethe

This is something I believe strongly; it’s one part of why my full, correct user name on the Internet, which I chose in 1996, is gigoid, the dubious….. the latter part being my professional title, as it were…. Dubious is what I do, and the reason why I read so much, and find so much of the universe to be so fascinating….. and, at times, so damned frustrating…. Of course, that is when I’ve been running up against other people too much, which tests my resolve to remain sane in the face of so much that isn’t conducive to that state….. Any who, all rationalization aside, I’m stuck…. No rant seems to be in there, and nothing coming up in SB to stimulate enough angst to fire off a few paragraphs…. So, I’ll cheat, again….

Here is a pearl, written on the last day of 2011, about a year and a half ago (almost…. 1.33333333 years, to be exact….), that speaks to the subject I was just discussing (imagine that!…. how convenient!….) Well, ALMOST the same subject…..  Any who, it’s pretty good, given its age and provenance…. Enjoy!…..
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A few random thoughts on the meaning of insanity, and by implication, sanity…….all came from one dive. Pearl after pearl on the same subject kept presenting itself for my perusal, so after a few, I just gave up & collected them. So here they are, all with a bit to say about those among us who perceive reality from a whole different place than you or me…..

“What garlic is to salad, insanity is to art.” — Augustus Saint-Gaudens (1848-1907), Reminiscences

If sanity were dollars I’d be bankrupt.” — Smart Bee

“I come from a long line of Southern psychotics and an environment where madness is currency and conversation is blood sport.” — Elizabeth Ashley

According to figures from the Justice Department, the average rapist serves only 5.2 years on jail, and the average murderer serves only 8.6 years. By contrast, the average time served for possession of LSD is 10.1 years, and many Americans are serving mandatory minimum sentences of 20 to 25 years for possession or sale of marijuana. — Smart Bee
(Insanity comes in many guises…… your choice as to which is real, and which is delusion….)

Avoid reality at all costs!

And who (in time) knows whither we may vent
The treasure of our tongue? To what strange shores
This gain of our best glory shall be sent
T’ enrich unknowing nations with our stores?
What worlds in the yet unformed Occident
May come refin’d with th’ accents that are ours?
– Samuel Daniel (1562-1619) — Musophilus, Stanza 163
(Psychosis is rooted in fear, and fear also assumes many masks…..)

I feel like one
Who treads alone
Some banquet-hall deserted,
Whose lights are fled,
Whose garlands dead,
And all but he departed.
– Thomas Moore (1779-1852)
– Oft in the Stilly Night
(An accurate description of the onset of depression…..)

Why ask me? I’m just visiting reality.

We now return you to our regularly scheduled program…..
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OMG, I’m done, and I wasn’t ready to be done…. Oh, well, so be it…. Let’s see how it proofs out….. Once more, I am surprised to find that it worked out just fine…. at least, for my rather loose standards…. Again, I don’t think we need to call the Pulitzer committee, but, it ain’t bad, so I’m going with it, as is…. Just in time, too, to go catch my bus to the printer store…. Yay….  Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


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

gigoid

dozer3

Phlebotomists do it with their fingers…..

Ffolkes,
Artfully, he dodged the bullet, turning to watch it plow into the wall by his head. Slapping one palm to his forehead, he gave out a great shout, “ki aieeeeeee!”, striking to the left with his other hand, shattering the small bird statue on the pedestal. The bird screamed, and dropped the tiny silver gun….. As entropy increased, gravity grew weak, then strong, tossing the players about the room like ten-pins in a row. Finally, a loud gong sounded, whereupon everyone dutifully trooped into the great hall to hear the daily proclamation from the beloved Leader in Mystery. Headache gone, thanks to the bird’s scream, he joined the parade, knowing he would find what he sought in the great hall…. His quest neared the end, and he could almost taste the cold dish of revenge, demanded by the blood of his murdered master…. Not for nothing was he called, “Pujin, the Merciless, Nearly-Master Killer of the Temple of the Divine Duck…..

Okay, so it fell apart at the end…. I couldn’t keep my tongue planted any longer in my cheek, and had to let it show its nose…. Hmm, that doesn’t quite sound right, does it? Never mind, we’ll pretend none of it happened, and just go on with today’s Pearl, or what passes for the creative process around her on mornings, like this, when I can feel Murphy staring a hole in my back, waiting for me to approach something with paint, or cold water, or poop of some kind, to try to get me to fuck up, so he can hit me with whatever he has in mind….. the asshole…..

You would think that after all this time, he would find someone new and simpler to fool, as I’m getting pretty wise to his games…. He’s a master, of course, at making us think we have him beat, so I don’t fool myself into thinking like that for long, but, a newbie surely ought to be more fun than an old curmudgeon like me who doesn’t even have the wherewithal to get overly upset any more at his shenanigans….. But, then, nobody ever said Murphy was smart, whereas he is often described as an asshole… the asshole….

I note a bit of symmetry in those last two paragraphs, at least at the end…. Too bad we had to subject ourselves to the tender ministrations of a force of nature to achieve that, eh? I’m not complaining about Murphy, as that has been shown to be a futile pastime…. No, I’m just blathering again, trying to fill up space for the intro section, which asked me yesterday to avoid anything fancy or involved today, as it has a mind to take a day off from the strain of coming up with a new way to open up these Pearls each day….. Which is to say, of course, that my own mind is wanting the day off today… I only wish I could indulge that request, but, we’ve got stuff to do….

Well, no, we don’t, that was a lie…. I was just trying to…. well, never mind, a lie is a lie, and there’s no excuse, so I won’t offer any….. I’ll just ignore it, and go on to the daily dive, which, given the crap I’ve created here, could conceivably get a bit dangerous for the uninitiated…. Please watch your step, I have a feeling it may get a bit tricky to navigate today….. Shall we Pearl?…..
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ISMISM:  Belief in any distinctive doctrine, theory or practice. Ismism was   started up in the mid-1980s by a splinter group from “Atheists For Christ”. Ismism meetings gained quick popularity, and Ismism leader Ralph Snider travelled the world promoting his paper “Why I Argue A Lot”. The followers of Ismism are generally agreed to be very confused people. — Daniel Bowen’s TOXIC CUSTARPEDIA

Strangely enough, I believe a Church of ISISM was founded, as well, though not by Mr. Snider, to my knowledge….. What I do know is that the Board of Directors of the Amtrak system are probably charter members of both the church and the movement itself; this much is made plain by the obviously fucktarded business practices as carried out by their employees. The people who run the national train system here in the US are obviously those guys who got the C’s, D’s and F’s in business school, because their employees don’t seem to give much of a shit whether they do their work or not….. Allow me to describe my own experience with the results of their asinine inability to run a viable business….

The train station in Martinez, CA is rather nice, having been built within the last 20 years or so, so it’s still fairly clean, and most everything seems to work, except, of course the vending machines, which are programmed to steal money rather than give snacks. Oh, and there was the snack bar itself, which was closed during the period prior to the train’s arrival, choosing to ignore the 50 or 60 potential customers waiting to board the train… No sense in trying to make TOO much money, now, is there? Seems to be their attitude, because I’ve never seen the place open, no matter what time I’ve come there to meet trains….. They just like to have the open counter there, so people can look at all the stuff they can’t buy….

I’d booked a coach seat for my trip, but was not looking forward to a 14 hour train ride sitting up, so, when I saw that the trains were advertising on-board Wifi, I decided to pay the OUTRAGEOUS amount (more than THREE HUNDRED DOLLARS more than the coach seat, already more than a hundred….. for what is essentially a big bus….) they wanted for a sleeper compartment, the smallest they have, called a “roomette”. It’s almost big enough for a normal sized child to sit in comfortably, but for me, a Boeing 747 wide body, it was somewhat cramped, if I tried to stand up. That was okay, as there was no attendant assigned to my car, as I found out after having to haul my suitcase up a stairway designed to accommodate hobbits, or short, skinny elves, and I needed to sit down to recover from getting on board….

An attendant from the car behind mine showed up after about 20 minutes, when I was informed that she wouldn’t be able to turn down my bed, as she was still working on the car behind her, and wouldn’t be done for a while…. So, if I wanted to lie down to sleep, I had to drop down the upper bunk, get the mattress waiting there, then figure out how to make the two facing chairs turn into a bed to put it on… Well, this was too much for my back to accomplish, so I just tried to crawl up on the bunk to sleep, after the ordeal of trying to remove clothing in a space not big enough to turn around or bend over, once the bunk was down… all without hurting my back…. ‘Twas indeed a small miracle…..Climbing up was another ordeal, whereupon I found the only light control was down below, so rather than try to go down to find it, I tried to sleep a while with the light shining in my face….

Between the light in my eyes, the rocking and noise of the train, and my old bladder, my sleep lasted about 30 minutes…. Getting up, throwing on pants, using the head, and coming back to my tiny little space was so exhausting I decided to just sit up rather than try to get back in the bunk… so, I settled down to sleep in the chair, which I could have done much better in one of the big coach seats, as it turns out….. Sleeping fitfully from about 2 AM until about 6:30, I saw nobody, train staff, or passengers, stirring about…. I sat up, painfully finishing the Pearl I’d worked on for that morning…. painfully, because the alleged table was about the size of a postage stamp, with nowhere to use the mouse, but in the air next to the table…. not terribly useful.

About 0700, I took the computer and walked back to the Parlor Lounge, where the WiFi was supposed to be available, when the car was scheduled to open, at 0700, according to the literature with my ticket. The attendant there was still working on getting the car ready, so I asked him when I might have the service I paid for…. He informed me that it was hooked up, but only worked when the train was in Klamath Falls at the station…. the rest of the trip, the mountains and terrain blocked the signal from the network…. “Brilliant,” I thought, “Not only can I not get my Pearl posted, I have nothing at all to do for the next five and a half hours….”, having not brought a book, thinking the computer, and internet, would entertain me….. SIGH…. I was beginning to believe I had somehow died without noticing, and was now on  the TRAIN TO HELL…..

I went back to my “roomette”… On the way, I saw the young lady ostensibly covering the service in my room, and asked her if I could get the breakfast service in my room, as advertised. She said she would be there “in a few minutes”…. 30 minutes later, she shows up, takes my order, acting as if she was doing me a favor, and disappears, with no word as to when it might be expected…. After about 45 minutes, the train pulled into Klamath Falls, where it sat for about 25 minutes to let off and take on passengers and luggage, allowing passengers to step off the train to have a smoke, if so desired (no smoking allowed anywhere on the train….). As I stepped off to do just that, I noted the attendant performing the same act of vice-maintenance; I said nothing, just finished my smoke and went back to my room, so I wouldn’t miss the food’s arrival…. I needn’t have hurried, as she didn’t come in behind me, as far as I could tell…. I checked, because, as I said, I was starving…..

The train resumed the journey, but, still no breakfast…. After another 45 minutes, and over two hours after I asked to have the food, telling the server I was starving (my exact words….), it still hadn’t arrived…. I got up, pretty steamed, and started toward the dining car, intending to find some food… As I rounded the turn in the car behind me, I saw the young woman approaching with a large paper bag in her hand…. I said, “Aha!”, spun on my heel, and started back to my room, not even looking at her after turning…

As I walked through the door between cars, I growled low in my throat, and hit my walking stick hard on the metal floor to catch my balance, (the floor moves….). and express a bit of frustration… At my room, I stowed the stick, sat, and waited for the food… She arrived and literally dumped the bag on the table, without a word, set down the coffee I’d asked for (two hours before), then, continued down the hall, and down the stairs to the conductor’s office below, where she apparently complained about my hitting the stick on the floor….

As I was trying to get my food out of the bag and fit on the tiny little table, the conductor appeared, and said I had been “threatening” to the attendant…. Well, at this point, I had had enough, so I proceeded to let my PTSD have its way, and treated the conductor to a full blown, tears flowing, crying rant, detailing my miserable night, the worse morning, and my intent to sue the rail system for everything they had….

I told him I had paid less money to stay at a Five Star Hotel, (the truth), that I was disabled, and had to carry my own luggage on board, spent a miserable night without a bed, that I had received NONE of the services for which I had paid over three hundred dollars, and I was now going to try to eat my COLD sausage and eggs with my COLD coffee, and he should just leave me alone before I totally lost control…. Having ranted in full out crying mode for about five full minutes at that point, I sat back, looked out the window, and ignored him until he went away…..

Well, I think I got the message across, to him, at least, as  a bit later, he came back, apologized for my troubles, and tried to make nice for the company…. He couldn’t do anything about the ticket price, of course, (note the eyebrows wiggling up and down…..) but he suggested I complain and request a refund, because the management needed to hear about this kind of thing…. He stated he would be talking with the supervisor of the attendant for her lack of sensitivity and laziness, and offered to help me get my bag downstairs when we arrived in an hour or so…. His attitude, correct as it was, only served to point up the contrast with the service I should have received, and didn’t, in any respect…..

Fortunately for all, my friend was there to meet me, and whisk me away before I could devise a way to torment the office staff at the Eugene station, or blow somebody up like I’d been blown for the last 14 hours…. Instead, we went and had lunch, and I was able to decompress enough to enjoy the rest of my visit with my buddy and his partner, Cyn….  The wine helped, for sure…..

This rant has helped a bit, as well…. though, I have to say, in looking back over it, I was nicer than I should have been, and much nicer to them than they were to me…. This is also going to help, because I intend to include a link to this Pearl in the letter I send to them, eventually, with the expressed hope that the tale goes viral on the Net, and my intent to publish it as widely as I can, to start a whispering, word-of-mouth campaign as a message to them to either clean up their act, or get out of business…. I’m not going to settle for anything less…. They’ve already lost my business for the rest of my life, and I had intended to travel by train a lot…. Now, that is NOT going to happen, not without some kind of assurance that stuff like this doesn’t happen again, to anyone…..

“The only thing wrong with doing nothing is that you never know when you’re done.” — The Stovall’s Law of negative inaction
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Composing the above mild rant tired me out, not unsurprisingly…. Before I started writing so much on a daily basis, I hadn’t realized that PTSD, as one  of its characteristics that comes down on the negative side, can make it tiring to think about old stuff that was of a traumatic nature, due to the tendency for the emotional content to recreate itself, strongly, generally causing an overflow of tears and embarrassment (I know, it’s okay to cry, but doing it in public places is somewhat of a facer, what?….. Not exactly the image I’m trying to create on the streets…..). Any who, I’m fagged, though having only been up about two hours….

A fresh poem isn’t ready, so I’m going back to the archives, but will add a fresh haiku, written this morning, before pasting in the older poem…..  As every day this month, this is for the April National Poetry Writing Month Challenge, with the updates to be found here:  http://www.napowrimo.net/ (I still don’t know if I’m doing this right, but, oh well….)

Haiku:

Bright sun rises up,
glory against a blue sky.
Joy is now, today.

~~ gigoid

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

A Failure to Germinate

Marking the days in elements of sad disarray
only holds me thrall, as I laugh while I may.
With cold, hard hands so impatient and cruel
pulling me to this vale of tears, a pathetic old fool.

Feelings sit silent, cast in shadows and light
breaking forth to implicate such vengeful might.
Just below the surface they patiently hide
to sally forth bravely, colors bright as they ride.

Tears and pain transform valued assets in hand
while comfort and serenity retreat to a far land.
Bold, bright patterns of hope garnish my ruinous state
until reality enters, full of disdainful portions of hate.

I sort out the illustrious measures of vision gone mild
only to find them transformed, now vicious and wild.
In my deepest desires I find myself calloused and cold
with faithless advocates whose souls have been sold.

My search finds little to support any hope of relief
far too much time has passed to bolster such belief.
The sad becomes real, and real becomes unfounded
until flights of such fancy are all dead, and grounded.

Nature has informed me of the newly hatched crime
that reality has boasted of proudly, time after time.
The last answer we think of is always the best
as we come to terms with fate, our hope at rest.

~~ gigoid

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In re: freshness, since the poem section is only half and half, I’ll put together an old-school pearl for this last section today…. It’s a bit shorter, and takes less time than another rant…. Here is one with a very obscure, but valid, point…. which, of course, is left as an exercise for the Gentle Reader….. (that’s you…..) ….. Enjoy!

But Faith, fanatic Faith, once wedded fast
To some dear falsehood, hugs it to the last.

– Thomas Moore (1779-1852) — Lalla Rookh, The Veiled Prophet of Khorassan

‘Tis not the fairest form that holds The mildest, purest soul within;
‘Tis not the richest plant that holds The sweetest fragrance in.

– Dawes

“Human life is but a series of footnotes to a vast, obscure, unfinished masterpiece.” — Vladimir Nabokov

“In God We Trust.” I don’t believe it would sound any better if it were true.” — Mark Twain

“Imagination is the one weapon in the war against reality.” — Jules de Gaultier

“It is human nature to think wisely & act foolishly.” — Anatole France

He ne’er is crown’d
With immortality, who fears to follow
Where airy voices lead.

– John Keats (1795-1821) — Endymion, Book ii
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Okay, why don’t y’all sit back and cogitate a moment while I go back and punch this up….. Not too shabby, I think…. I may hit out at Amtrak again some day soon; I don’t think I quite got all of my anger at them resolved. No worries, everything comes in the fullness of time, so I’ve heard….  ;-)

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

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

Which is Why….


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

gigoid

dozer3

A smattering of simple sugars…..

Ffolkes,
In the grand scheme of things, I would normally begin this with some unadulterated nonsense, or perhaps a purely fictional story opening. Occasionally, I will speak of how Murphy’s latest japes have enhanced my morning, or of how I’m feeling emotionally, or physically, as those two states occupy a lot of my attention these days. Today we are trying something relatively new, which I will call pure honesty, and I hope to hell it works….

I can’t seem to find an opening format for these introductory comments that is suitable for daily use. It has to be funny, and/or compelling enough to draw attention, but not so heavy as to frighten away those who like lighter reading. (They are the ones who are NOT usually in the choir, and need to hear my messages the most….) It should tease a little about what is coming up later, but not give away any of the suspense I am trying to build in some cases. In short, it is driving me crazy, and that has been reflected in these paragraphs almost every day, with yesterday’s being the exception. That one was a short excuse, telling why I was cheating by using archived material, and was completely atypical.

But, nothing I’ve ever tried has fit the bill sufficiently to make me use it again, other than to try to remember what has worked in the past…. which brings me back to yesterday’s post, from here in Oregon where I’ve been visiting for a couple of days now…. That post had perhaps the shortest intro in a couple of years, and my statistics from yesterday were highest I’ve ever seen here… 21 Likes in the first 24 hours, an unprecedented number, and once again, over a dozen of them were ffolkes who hadn’t been here before, to my knowledge. I am jazzed about that, even thought I don’t write for statistics, per se; I write for my own sanity and pleasure. But, it’s nice to know other ffolkes are enjoying what I write as well, so I’m pleased with the turnout yesterday….

In hopes of keeping those numbers up, today’s intro will again be relatively short, as this will be it…. I’m done with it, and want to get on to the end, so I can go play with my friends in the Big Blue Room…. a visit to taste beer is on tap for later, which will be great, as they’ve got some prize winners on hand for tasting… should be good…. Any who, I don’t know how this will turn out yet, so let’s go see what happens…. Shall we Pearl?…..
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“I’m in direct contact with many advanced fun CONCEPTS.” — Zippy the Pinhead

There is no doubt in my mind that this is true and complete, to the best of Zippy’s knowledge, which is extensive and quite varied in nature. However, for our purposes, we will ignore all that, and go right to what matters…. which is rutabagas….. You never see anybody making any dishes out of rutabagas any more; I’m not sure it’s available for sale anywhere… Of course, it’s no big loss, as they were just about the most tasteless, useless foods I’ve ever encountered…. Hmm… I seem to have written meself into a corner, with no way out… Too bad, really, I like the Zippy quote….

Well, that sinks it…. I’m don’t have it this morning, so, I will once again need to dip into the past for an acceptable pearl or two…. I’ll be right back with one for this section….. Okay, here’s a good one, from late in 2011….
———-

“To get people to think they are thinking begets friendship, whereas actually to make people think begets resentment. There is no level so low to which people will not stoop, even honorable people, to avoid the difficulty of thinking.” — Smart Bee

So true, so true…..it fascinates me at times, this reluctance on the part of most folks to using the one and only evolutionary advantage they possess over other creatures. Compared to other animals, we’re not particularly fast, nor very strong, and our teeth and nails are not very good weapons compared to those of a leopard, for just one example. We need to wear clothing to protect ourselves from our own planet’s weather extremes. We rely on other species for our sustenance, being unable to create it ourselves. And, in the final analysis, we’re pretty fragile, physically speaking; even a soft blow administered to the correct point can cause death.

Hell, our bodies have more than one design flaw; how about how our food and air processing facilities? They cross each other at a critical junction, at the throat, and can frequently cause problems that can have mortal consequences. Our elimination process and sexual organs also cross paths, in a manner of speaking; the outlet for the former is right next to the points of ingress and egress of the latter, depending on gender. From a strictly engineering viewpoint, it’s not a very good design.

It’s clear that there is little chance of humans ever dominating on the basis of physical characteristics; most animals are much better equipped for that. Our mind, our imagination, our perception of more than merely physical energy in the universe, these are our advantages over other creatures. We have the ability to remember the past in the present, and use those memories to extrapolate the future. This is an incredible evolutionary leap, one that allows humans to readily turn their perceptions of how things work into tools that enable us to alter reality to suit our wishes. We can’t really fight our way out of a paper bag, and our defenses against predators is weak in comparison to other animals. But the power of our minds is sufficient to neutralize all physical and environmental advantages of the other inhabitants, and gives mankind the means to not merely survive, but to thrive and dominate.

So, the question remains: why are so many people so averse to using their minds? Well, I don’t know, for sure. I could make some guesses, and they might even be accurate. But it really doesn’t matter, because the only creature who can cause us to change ourselves, is ourselves. Nobody can make us do anything we don’t want to do. Most folks learn the power of the word “No” at a young age (age 2 is customary for most folks), and get so impressed with it that it becomes their default position for anything that appears ‘difficult’. Sad, but true…..and wishing won’t make it go away. I can only wish I were smart enough to figure out how to get folks to see the light, before its too late, and the bulb burns out for good…..
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I’ve looked deep inside, and I can’t find a poem in there today, but I have this poetry challenge to meet, so, once more, I’ll dip into my older material for one…. Here is one of my favorites….. And the link to the home page of the National Poetry Month Challenge is  http://www.napowrimo.net/

After the odyssey….

Portraits of iconic symbols, crashing, singing, forgotten;
evolving into mature innovation, as yet pale, and rotten.
Still water justly breeds, impenetrable primal verses resound;
unholy moments tarry, emotion swirls in passion unbound

Spiritual ovulation precedes each pregnant pause;
gravid, time moves on, following destiny’s cause.
Cast adrift on waves of confusion, to a final, damp landing;
salvation beckons sweetly, fed well on understanding.

Dreams directly fall, in night’s grey bower, unbidden;
lingering flavors in simple taste, lovingly, cleverly hidden.
Childish laughter sounds, joyful, bright, and clear;
no need ever to hide, no more monsters to fear.

Temper most foul arrives under unregistered mail;
forgotten taunts live on, lashed by an ancient flail.
Plain dealing delivers such lasting specks of honest hate;
savage in retrospect, never hasty, always running late.

Forever, cries an ambient lover of the pending night;
his pale, weak issue forms its own failing light.
Still, fortune favors such as those who apprehend;
Sweet love of Gaia, let it never end.

~~ gigoid

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Well, it seems clear that my fresh material isn’t up to snuff today…. it seems so to me, anyway, and I’m the one who has to stomach it first….. Which means I’m going into the past yet again, but with fresh material…. This will be a random chosen old-school Pearl, the best I can do on short notice…… The point may or may not be apparent, but, what else is new?….

“If people bring so much courage to this world the world has to kill them, so of course it kills them. The world breaks everyone and afterward many are strong at the broken places. But those that will not break it kills. It kills the very good and the very gentle and the very brave…” — Ernest Hemingway, “A Farewell to Arms”

“When we seek to discover the best in others, we somehow bring out the best in ourselves.” — William Arthur Ward

“In a mad world, only the mad are sane.” — Akiro Kurosawa

“A sect or party is an elegant incognito devised to save a man from the vexation of thinking.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Man’s many desires are like the small metal coins he carries about in his pocket. The more he has the more they weigh him down.” — Satya Sai Baba

“Whoever has even once become notorious by base fraud, even if he speaks the truth, gains no belief.” — Phaedrus (c. 8 A.D.) — Book i, Fable 10, 1

I feel like one
Who treads alone
Some banquet-hall deserted,
Whose lights are fled,
Whose garlands dead,
And all but he departed.

– Thomas Moore (1779-1852) — Oft in the Stilly Night

“And thereby hangs a tale.” — Francis Rabelais (1495-1553) — Works, Book v, Chap. iv
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Aye, thereby indeed hangs a tale…. and a fluffy tale at that….  :lol:   I’ve done all the damage I can do, so I’m outta here….  Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


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

gigoid

dozer3

New tricks for old dogs…..

Ffolkes,

As he stepped aboard the waiting train, he turned to look back at her, a small, forlorn figure standing in shadows near the exit turnstile. As he turned, she saw him, and raised a hand, as if to wave, but paused, locking eyes with his across the platform. The hiss of the train’s escaping steam mingled with the hum of the crowds boarding, but all faded into the background, unheard, as the two lovers gazed, with searing pain, into each other’s eyes, hers now flowing with shining tears. She again raised her hand, waving once before quickly turning, and rushing away, losing herself in the crowd. With heavy heart, he turned, walked past the conductor, and moved toward his seat, leaving the past behind…..

Now that my own tears are flowing, let’s leave the star-crossed lovers to their fates, and get on with the day’s work, such as it is….. It may be a bit more work than I usually have to do, as I’m supposed to come up with a poem for the April National Poetry Month Writing Challenge, in which I’ve agreed to participate…. I just spent a few minutes, trying to begin a verse, and experienced about that many minutes of sheer terror and exasperation, as I was able to come up with only two lines before the well went dry…. two….. not a grand start, to be sure. I may just have to resort to a haiku for my first effort; I know I can come up with one of those, as I’m pretty confident of my skill with them…. justified or not.

But, that’s for later…. right now, I still need to come up with a bit more of an intro, and I’ve written myself into a nasty little corner here, with no apparent way out….. I might have had a chance, had I gone one more paragraph into the opening story line, but, I didn’t, so here I am once again, stuck for anything intelligent to write…. I don’t know how I do it, but, maybe I could find some fool who would believe me when I tell them I know what I’m doing, and get them to pay me for this…. That will probably happen just about the time the pigs are ready to fly…..

Oh, look! There’s one taking off now! Gosh, it looks so brave, outlined against the morning sky, tiny wings beating to beat the band, weaving back and forth across the brightening sky like a drunken loon…. SIGH…. Such beauty is uncommon, and a joy to behold…. If you can buy into that statement, I have a deal in a bridge you might be interested in…. It’s a good deal, and a great source of income, once the toll booths are put in. I’ll need cash only, though, no checks, and all deals are final….

Now that we’ve entered into the spirit of the day, I think it’s best if I try to steal silently away, into the dark morning light, and get on with today’s dive…. I have a feeling that if I don’t do that now, this entire operation is going to go down in flames, which always annoys the insurance dudes…. I’ll avoid that whole issue, and get on with it, forthwith…. Shall we Pearl?…..

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Today’s Pearl is going to resemble the coat of many colors that gave Joseph so much trouble back in Biblical days (I think it was Joseph…. oh well, doesn’t matter, y’all know the story anyway…..)…. It’s just got too much randomness to ever achieve any real coherence, so I’m not even going to try to explain it all…. Below you will find a very rare old-school pearl, a group of seven quotes, freshly chosen for their very randomness, in relation to each other…. As is sometimes the case, the point that emerged is one that defies normal expression, and is actually so intimate, it can only be experienced on a personal level; sharing it would be unwise, if not dangerous to both parties…. So, just enjoy them for what they may bring you, and go on with a bemused smile, and my good wishes….. not that they will help, but, I try…..

“It is a far, far better thing to have a firm anchor in nonsense than to put out on the troubled seas of thought.” — John Kenneth Galbraith

“We view things not only from different sides, but with different eyes — we have no wish to find them alike.” — Pascal

“Silence can be the biggest lie of all. We have a responsibility to speak up; and whenever the occasion calls for it, we have a responsibility to raise bloody hell.” — Herbert Block

“Je me presse de rire de tout, de peur d’etre oblige de’en pleurer.

(I make myself laugh at everything, in case I should have to weep.)” — Pierre-Augustin de Beaumarchais (1732-1799)

“An assertion produces a stronger effect than an argument, at least among the majority of mankind. That is why public speakers seek to hammer home their party’s arguments with assertions.” — F. Nietzsche, _Human, All to Human_

“It is a very sad thing that nowadays there is so little useless information.” — Oscar Wilde (1854-1900)

“.. Should I get locked in the PRINCIPAL’S OFFICE today — or have a VASECTOMY??” — Zippy the Pinhead

Well, there you go…. I don’t think I can make that any more obscure than it is, so we’ll go on to further adventures in literary suicide…..

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National Poetry Month Icon PicApril 1, 2013

Rhyming is better than lying….

 It’s all too, too much, he cried

I can take no more!

It’s all crazy, my brain is fried,

battered, bloody, and sore.

Talking heads shout out hatred and fear

jam for my morning toast.

Pointing fingers far, middle, and near

enemies everywhere, almost.

Women, gays, and seniors fall prey,

easy targets, slow and weak.

Convenient fools, wanting only to play,

used, and abused, even as we speak.

It enough to drive me floridly insane,

or want to buy a gun.

I may end up in jail, or in massive pain,

but, oh, it would be fun….

~~ gigoid ~~

 April Fool! This, such as it is, is the first poem of the month for me, and the first entry in the National Poetry Writing Challenge for April….. It’s not my best effort ever, but, it’s okay, and it’s almost a rant, in its own little way…. I’ll do better as the month goes on, I promise…. Hell, I’m betting tomorrow’s effort will be better…. Just for the hell of it, here is a haiku, too….

To write a poem,

hard as it seems to be, is

not impossible.

~~ gigoid

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I have a bunch of stuff to do today in the Big Blue Room, to finish preparations for my trip tonight to Oregon. So, I’m cheating again, and putting in here an old pearl, from the archives…. I can’t say exactly when this first appeared, as I don’t organize them well enough to do so, but, hey, it really doesn’t matter at all…… From the vantage point of the future, I see that Smart Bee was particularly helpful this day….. Enjoy!….

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A few random thoughts on the meaning of insanity, and by implication, sanity…….all came from one dive. Pearl after pearl on the same subject kept presenting itself for my perusal, so after a few, I just gave up & collected them. So here they are, all with a bit to say about those among us who perceive reality from a whole different place than you or me….. (My comments are in parentheses, like this one…. )

‘What garlic is to salad, insanity is to art.’ — Augustus Saint-Gaudens (1848-1907), Reminiscences

If sanity were dollars I’d be bankrupt. — Smart Bee

“I come from a long line of Southern psychotics and an environment where madness is currency and conversation is blood sport.” — Elizabeth Ashley

According to figures from the Justice Department, the average rapist serves only 5.2 years on jail, and the average murderer serves only 8.6 years. By contrast, the average time served for possession of LSD is 10.1 years, and many Americans are serving mandatory minimum sentences of 20 to 25 years for possession or sale of marijuana. — Smart Bee

(Insanity comes in many guises…… your choice as to which is real, and which is delusion….)

Avoid reality at all costs! — Smart Bee

And who (in time) knows whither we may vent

The treasure of our tongue? To what strange shores

This gain of our best glory shall be sent

T’ enrich unknowing nations with our stores?

What worlds in the yet unformed Occident

May come refin’d with th’ accents that are ours?

– Samuel Daniel (1562-1619) — Musophilus, Stanza 163

(Psychosis is rooted in fear, and fear also assumes many masks…..)

I feel like one

Who treads alone

Some banquet-hall deserted,

Whose lights are fled,

Whose garlands dead,

And all but he departed.

– Thomas Moore (1779-1852) — Oft in the Stilly Night

(An accurate description of the onset of depression…..)

“Why ask me? I’m just visiting reality.” — Smart Bee

We now return you to our regularly scheduled program…..

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April Fool! Again! None of the above exists, and we are all an illusion, alleged in our own minds….. Thank goodness! This day, being one of my favorite days of the year, due to its strong connection to the concept of nonsense and bozoid tendencies, is also a new beginning….

Today the future of this blog begins anew, as I will now be writing each day’s post from a different location, beginning tomorrow morning, with a Pearl that will be created on a moving train, as I speed through the Northwest toward Oregon… I’m looking forward to it with great anticipation…. Until then….. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..

Sometimes I sits and thinks,

and sometimes

I just sits.

 

gigoid

dozer3

Clouds of vacuous attendants….

Ffolkes,
As I opened the door to the deli and pushed in out of the cold, steam from the sidewalk vent flowed in with me, disappearing in the warmth inside.  I had a moment of disorientation, a feeling of premonition that I realized had been with me all morning, distracting me during the walk through the dark streets from home.  Mrs. Cohen, one of the owners, looked up from behind the counter to smile at me, looking worried and relieved at once. “I wasn’t sure you would be in today, Nolan,” she stated in her soft accented voice, “I know you have a funeral to go to today.”

“I thought work might help me keep from thinking about it,” I replied. “And it seemed like what she would have wanted me to do.” With eyes shimmering, Mrs. Cohen just nodded, and said, “Well, then, you can start on the prep list, I suppose. We’re a little light on potato salads.” “Okay, I’ll cook off a bag of potatoes for the week.” Still somewhat distracted, I moved to the back of the store, into the kitchen, hanging my coat on the hooks by the back door. Flipping the lights on in the walk-in reefer, I ducked inside to check the inventory.

As I stepped back out of the reefer, I heard the front door bell jingle, and my feeling of premonition got stronger. Curious, I walked to the kitchen door, and looked out into the table area beyond the deli case. Just inside the door stood a…..

See, now, this is the problem…. I get started on a nice little story idea like this, then, just when it starts to get interesting, it all fades away, or like with this one, I have to take a break to stretch & ease up on the sitting. When I come back to it, it’s gone. Nowhere in my head to be found…. Oh, well, I guess it does provide me with some intriguing opening paragraphs, even if they’re pretty well non sequitor in re: the rest of what is here…. rather than complain any more about it, let’s go find some pearls, shall we?……
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EVERYTHING I NEED TO KNOW I LEARNED IN KINDERGARTEN
1. Share everything.
2. Play fair.
3. Don’t hit people.
4. Put things back where you found them.
5. Clean up your own mess.
6. Don’t take things that aren’t yours.
7. Say you’re sorry when you hurt somebody.
8. Wash your hands before you eat.
9. Flush.
10. Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.
11. Live a balanced life–learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work every day some.
12. Take a nap every afternoon.
13. When you go out into the world, watch out for traffic, hold hands, and stick together.
14. Be aware of wonder. Remember the little seed in the Styrofoam cup: The roots go down and the plant goes up and nobody really knows how or why, but we are all like that.
15. Goldfish and hamsters and white mice and even the little seed in the Styrofoam cup–they all die. So do we.
16. And then remember the Dick-and-Jane books and the first word you learned –the biggest word of all–LOOK.

– Robert Fulghum

Not everything needs a comment from me…. This doesn’t…..
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“If I have any beliefs about immortality, it is that certain dogs I have known  will go to heaven, and very, very few persons.” — James Thurber

I think that Mr. Thurber must have been a nice man, because this could have been expressed much more harshly. Instead he chose to use implication to point up his disappointment in the human spirit. He could have used words that would define more precisely just what it is about humans that makes us choose to act immorally much of the time, and do so in spite of knowing it is wrong. Dogs don’t seem capable of making that choice, unless they’ve been taught by a human to do so. They will almost always choose the act that is more ethical, or more moral; I would bet that is one reason why they sleep so well….. and why so many humans don’t…..
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Summer

See what delights in sylvan scenes appear!
Descending Gods have found Elysium here.
In woods bright Venus with Adonis stray’d,
And chaste Diana haunts the forest shade.
Come lovely nymph, and bless the silent hours,
When swains from shearing seek their nightly bow’rs;
When weary reapers quit the sultry field,
And crown’d with corn, their thanks to Ceres yield.
This harmless grove no lurking viper hides,
But in my breast the serpent Love abides.
Here bees from blossoms sip the rosy dew,
But your Alexis knows no sweets but you.
Oh deign to visit our forsaken seats,
The mossy fountains, and the green retreats!
Where-e’er you walk, cool gales shall fan the glade,
Trees, where you sit, shall crowd into a shade,
Where-e’er you tread, the blushing flow’rs shall rise,
And all things flourish where you turn your eyes.
Oh! How I long with you to pass my days,
Invoke the muses, and resound your praise;
Your praise the birds shall chant in ev’ry grove,
And winds shall waft it to the pow’rs above.
But wou’d you sing, and rival Orpheus’ strain,
The wond’ring forests soon shou’d dance again,
The moving mountains hear the pow’rful call,
And headlong streams hang list’ning in their fall!
But see, the shepherds shun the noon-day heat,
The lowing herds to murm’ring brooks retreat,
To closer shades the panting flocks remove,
Ye Gods! And is there no relief for Love?
But soon the sun with milder rays descends
To the cool ocean, where his journey ends;
On me Love’s fiercer flames for ever prey,
By night he scorches, as he burns by day.

Alexander Pope

I subscribed to a new email notification service from a site called PoemHunter.com, and this is my first poem from them…. nice choice! Enjoy!…..
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I feel like one
Who treads alone
Some banquet-hall deserted,
Whose lights are fled,
Whose garlands dead,
And all but he departed.
– Thomas Moore (1779-1852) — Oft in the Stilly Night

I often feel like this after writing one of my political or religious rants, but it isn’t an unfamiliar feeling. For most of my life I’ve felt a certain distance between me and other folks. When in school as a boy, it was just how things were for us “eggheads”; other kids who found school work to be tedious or difficult often expressed their displeasure at the ease with which I completed the work, or that I always seemed to have the answer to the teacher’s questions.

It was obvious to me even then that they didn’t enjoy reading or studying subjects outside their normal frame of reference as did I; I got a lot of funny looks at lunch time when I would read while eating. They didn’t know that the book was, for me, a protective barrier as well as an enjoyment; they didn’t realize how hard it was to be ostracized for being smart. How could they understand, when they were the one’s perpetrating the divisiveness?

Even though it hurt some, I never minded their misunderstanding that much; the joy of learning, and the power of the knowledge it gave me was more than enough reward for me. It was harder on them, I think, to try to get through school when they worked so hard to deny the tools that would have helped them. I never could get why so many of my peers complained about how hard school was, or how unfair, when it was so easy for me. Back then, without the understanding and tolerance that age brings with experience, I just thought it was lame. “It’s a poor workman who blames his tools” always made perfect sense to me….

I guess it would be safe to say that the human experience is not for the faint of heart; it takes some strength and will to be able to fully appreciate all the facets that make up a human being. Loneliness, remorse, fear, heartache, loss, emotional stress of all kinds are part of what makes us what we are, balancing all the good things of which we are capable. Many of us never even consider such ideas, making it that much harder to deal with them when they occur.

It occurs to me that this reluctance to use the basic intelligence with which we are born is a root cause of a great many of the problems the world at large faces today. Mankind’s unwillingness to apply the power of the mind to tasks that challenge it, or to any concept that makes it work hard, has kept us from advancing as far, or as fast, as might otherwise be possible.

We are our own worst enemy, and lack the wit to see it…. and, unfortunately, I believe it will eventually be our undoing…. But, I keep trying, shouting into the wind, and will do so as long as I breathe, because, little reason though I may have, I love my brothers and sisters, all seven billion of them, and would much rather they woke up and smelled the coffee….
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It is Maya!
Dost thou not know her?
Illusion — dreams — phantoms.
But, to the wise, Maya is more.
——————
But, to the wise, Maya is more.
Look around:
All that thou see’st,
Trees and shrubs, The grass at thy feet,
All that walks or creeps,
All that flies from tree to tree,
All is unreal: All is Maya.
Our bodies, our limbs, our very thoughts.
We ourselves are slaves to Maya.
What remaineth?  Who can say?
Love to the lover,
The child to the mother,
The song to the singer,
God to the worshipper;
These, wandering thro’ the world of Maya,
Are perchance shadows of that which is.

– Holst, Savitri (based upon the sanskrit Mahabharata)

Reality is a slippery little devil; at times one can’t grasp its true nature with both hands and a vice grip. Even duct tape won’t always confine it to one shape, and that is saying something.  The ancient Indian philosopher who wrote this either knew this, or got into a powerful batch of cannabis indicus, and couldn’t find his way out. But, nonetheless, whoever wrote this managed to capture the chameleon-like quality of Reality, and to state it simply and beautifully.

At this point in time, any comments on the nature of said Reality from me would be not only superfluous, but would most likely add to the confusion already present in the very nature of what we are discussing. So, I won’t make any…. I’ll let Reality confuse you all by its lonesome, a task at which it has unlimited experience, and proven talent…. enjoy it while you still can! You never know when it will turn into something else less pleasant to contemplate….
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In retrospect, today’s Pearl went fairly smoothly, compared to most of my latest efforts. Rather than dwell on it, though, it’s probably best to just get on with the day, a policy that never fails. Fails to what, we may never know, but the fact that it does is sufficient to know for the nonce…. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


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

gigoid

Kowabunga!