Oddly enough, snakes HATE apples…

Ffolkes,

Truth be told, getting up when I do to write these Pearls is becoming more of a chore than it ever has in the past….. While fighting the pre-coffee, pre-magic cream kick-in, and the lethargy that now dogs me each morning, I experienced a small epiphany…. and then lost it….. It’s really too bad, too, because I’m fairly sure it was important, and would have made my life, if not easier, at least more comfortable…. SIGH…. I know it’s going to be a tough day when my own mind fails to get on board with the program, in spite of the offerings made by reality to expiate the difficulty….

I suppose I’ll have to push on, though, as my sense of Duty is so entwined with this purpose, this process will plague me until my last breath…. and possibly beyond…. Isn’t THAT a scary thought? Oh well, it’s not as if I didn’t know all of this coming in; it’s just, as I said, one of those mornings, when it all seems more than I can bear…. Of course, I can bear a lot, but, that doesn’t mean I like it…. I may have, and be able to deal with, a lot of pain, but, in doing so, I tend to lose track of Mr. Nice Guy…. and don’t regret a moment of it when I do….

Since, however, I AM such a nice person, at the core, I always feel bad whenever I chew on someone, even if they deserve it (as is most often the case, I find…. stupid is as stupid does, after all….). I don’t know if that makes up for my grumpiness, karmically speaking, but, it does keep me from chewing all the way down to the bone…. most times….. I can’t help it if people keep doing stupid right in front of me, though, so, I’ve come to the conclusion the whole issue is one I can’t afford to ignore, at least from a legal standpoint….

Now, from analyzing that last paragraph, I see we have reached a point where reality no longer has any influence over my mind at all…. This can be a good thing, or not, depending on how I deal with this last portion of this intro…. If I can work this right, we’ll be okay, just a bit stiff and awkward, especially on the turns…. If not, well, I may as well just go into the archives now, and be done with it…. Either way, my thumb is screaming at me, so it will have to be a fast one, to get done before my right hand becomes useless for typing….

On looking back over what has transpired to this point, I’m afraid my prediction holds…. this could get ugly, or it could turn to shit, in a heartbeat….. or, it could be the best Pearl ever…. at this point, there’s no way to tell…. Well, actually, since this intro is such a hodge-podge of mixed ingredients, some good, some bad, that “best Pearl” category is probably out of the question…. How about we shoot for “coherent”?…. That, at least, sounds doable….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“I may not understand what you say, but I’ll defend to your death my right to deny it.” — Albert Alligator, in Pogo, 26 September 1951

“Ah! don’t say you agree with me.   When people agree with me I always feel that I must be wrong.” — Oscar Wilde

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“How is it possible to expect that mankind will take advice, when they will not so much as take warning?” — Jonathan Swift

https://news.yahoo.com/germany-arrests-suspected-double-agent-spying-u-two-124028510.html

Don’t fret…. I’m not going to rant, even though I could….. This article is here to provide the latest development in the ongoing saga of the Snowden Effect…. The poor German spy they arrested was apparently subverted by the NSA, or some other agency in the US government, for what seems to be a pretty paltry sum…. If I’m reading it right, this terminally bozoid personality was paid a measly 2500 Euros to spy for our side…. It doesn’t seem like much, to me, for the risk of destroying one’s entire life, but, then, I’m not stupid, either, even if my nose IS red, and large, and makes a loud noise when squozen….. squuzzed…. squeezed….

Any who, such rampant dumbness doesn’t deserve my rant, though I wouldn’t object to putting it onto the NSA…. Instead, though, to foster a bit of tolerance in me, and avoid becoming even MORE angst-filled than I am already, I’ll go with an old-school pearl, targeted at those same federales who are making such a nuisance of themselves, by stealing not only the public’s money, while destroying its trust, but are also stealing our data, merely to justify their own deeply seated paranoia…. Yes, ffolkes, I give you, The Asininnies!….

“Life is a search after power.” — Emerson

(Well, it certainly is in Washington, D.C…..)

“Waco means the government can kill anyone it doesn’t like and get a 94% approval rating.” — Jeff Chan

(Especially if they can find someone else to blame it on….)

“I smell a rat.” — Patrick Henry, upon hearing about the Constitutional Convention, which eventually overthrew the first Federal Government of the United States

(Guess what, ffolkes…. the rat never left….)

“War loves to seek its victims in the young.” — Sophocles (496-406 BC) — Scyrii, Frag. 507

“CONGRESSIONAL ANTHEM:   MOE MONEY, MOE MONEY, MOE MONEY.” — Smart Bee

“A man that should call everything by its right name would hardly pass the streets without being knocked down as a Common Enemy.” — Lord Halifax

(This one is still true….. People have always had a hard time swallowing the truth, and, human nature hasn’t changed a whit…..)

“It is as useless to argue with those that have renounced the use and authority of reason as to administer medication to the dead.” — Thomas Paine

(Gee, sounds like they’re talking about the recent GOP runoff election in Mississippi…. where the Tea Party had a number of candidates running….)

Okay, so, it’s not the best pearl ever, and it’s all littered with comments…. Deal with it…. At least I’m done, and we can go find a poem now….

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I believe I have a poem percolating, somewhere in the hidden, far reaches of my mind; I can sort of feel the whirling vortex of burgeoning creative forces gaining speed, sucking in words, ideas, and perceptions to formulate some sort of outburst from my alter-ego, wherever it may be hiding…. That must be why I’ve been using so many of my older poems…. it sort of gives me a push in the right direction when I see the former results of this process in me…. Now, all I have to do is wait until it starts bleeding out, and try to get it on screen….

For now, I’ve been feeling a lot of wanderlust lately; I need to be out and gone, seeing some new part of the world where I’ve never been, or some part I’ve always wanted to explore…. Mostly, when I feel that, Ireland is the place that comes to mind…. I’ve wanted to explore the country, and get to know the people, for much of my adult life, and the day each in Dublin, Cork, and Belfast, while on my cruise last year, just isn’t enough to fulfill that desire…. Hence, I’ve decided that the Emerald Isle will be my next destination; I’ve already started saving up…. To celebrate the decision, here’s a poem I wrote a couple years ago, on that very subject….

Days and Nights of Eire

Comforting, a dream creeps oft into my mind
On the elven hills of Eire lives the vision I find.
Elegant, gracious, everlastingly draped in beauty
Just payment of simple homage lives as joyous duty.

Fairies and druids walk abroad in ghostly parade
Gracing each hearth with its own welcoming shade.
Castles and heroes yet live in tale and song
Proving love for the land in each heart strong.

From cold of winter into glorious young spring
Brown, and gray, to emerald green songs to sing
Soft rains always follow winter’s great tempest
Eire dons its emerald coat from east to west.

Old and strong, connections call out in dreams
Nothing that was known remains as it seems.
Immersion in ancient runes and battle hymns
Offering sanity in place of grievous whims.

Time and place can tell a much different tale
Judgment should never be a final sale.
Yet something solid and real calls me to go see
Where dreams of loving beauty may actually be….

~~ gigoid ~~


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Here I am again, lost in space, once again, sans any photos, or other means of producing anything worthwhile…. Having reached the third section, though, I am authorized to go with impulse, which, in this case, apparently bears a strong resemblance to laziness…. You know what that means…. another random, harlequin, old-school pearl, just because I can… Enjoy, ffolkes, this is all you get today…. Chalk it up to post-holiday depression, I guess… That always happens when I hear something like the first quote below, which I have no doubt is based on the truth….

“We have killed more people celebrating Independence Day than we lost  fighting for it.” — Will Rogers

“Virtue is a kind of health, beauty and good habit of the soul.” — Plato (B.C. 427?-347?)

“Nothing has such power to broaden the mind as the ability to investigate systematically and truly all that comes under thy observation in life.” — Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (121-180 AD) — Meditations, iii, 11

“It is folly for a man to pray to the gods for that which he has the power to obtain by himself.” — The Vatican Sayings, Epicurus

“Things are not always what they seem.” — Phaedrus (c. 8 A.D.) — Book iv, Fable 2, 5

“Ignorance plays the chief part among men, and the multitude of words;” — Diogenes Laertius (c. 200 AD) — Cleobulus, iv

“Do you have change for a paradigm?” — Smart Bee

Ah, yes…. An excellent pearl, of its type….. I find it apropos, somehow, that the only inclusion that came from a time period AFTER the first century A.D.. was from Will Rogers….
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I’m not going to whine, but that turned on me, and became more of an ordeal even than I’d imagined it would be…. It’s done, though, which is probably for the best….. I could conceivably hurt more than just myself by continuing….. Besides, my brain is now empty, so, I’ll be on my way…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes, should the universe see fit to give me a small break…..

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

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

Which is Why….


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

gigoid the dubious

Featured Image -- 2780

Based, as always, on arbitrary parameters….

Ffolkes,

I know it’s going to be a long day when taking a nap tires me out….. Yesterday was one of those days, and though I’m not precisely bursting with energy, today does NOT feel the same…. thankfully. Though, being one who doesn’t buy into the whole pie-in-the-sky routine, I’m not sure what that means…. It’s not as if I believe there is actually some bearded, white-haired old Caucasian dude sitting up there in the sky, on a gilded throne (tacky….), waiting for me to acknowledge his divinity with worship, who, I am told, will display a tantrum of childish pique if I don’t do so…. At least, that hasn’t happened thus far, so, I’m not going to hold my breath over it….

I will, however, remark that it makes it hard to feel productive when one gets up, as I did yesterday, after dozing off for a good two hours, only to feel like the only possible, logical choice is a return trip to go another few rounds with the pillow. It also makes it a bit sticky the next morning, (that’s today, ffolkes…. let’s keep up….), as I  try to salvage some of yesterday by speaking of it today…. I know it takes the chance of having the entire group get lost in time, as I tend to mix my time zones when writing, which often leads to losing track of which one I’m currently inhabiting…..

Life can be tough when one wishes to pursue the quest to create the perfect Pearl; it’s not the simple, stress-free activity it appears from the outside, let me tell you…. It CAN be fraught with all sorts of danger, and/or vicious beasts, all angry at being provoked…. those preachers and pundits get a bit testy when crossed, or, worse for them, exposed for their lies and chicanery….

However, I’m not a coward, and I’ve been at this for some time now; it’s merely the morning’s ambiance that has me nervous; it feels like Murphy is lurking, and I hate it when he holds off his surprises for later…. They’re always so much more complex, and, thus, harder to spot, when he takes the time to make them that way, the butthead…. I would try to fool him into thinking I’m not ready for them, so he lets whatever it is out of its cage early, but, I’m not sure I’ve got the chutzpah today…. Hell, I can barely keep my eyes open again, so, maybe today will be more like yesterday than I’d thought…. Hmm, how can I turn that to my advantage?….

I know, I’ll trick Murphy into thinking he’s already tricked me today; if I go back to bed, he’ll get all confused about the time, and think he’s losing it…. I don’t get the chance to fool with him like this very often, so, hey, we’re going for it…. I’ll come back later, ffolkes, to finish this intro, and bask in having bested that blasted asshole, who spends so much of his time fucking with me, or with my friends….. Plus, maybe if I sleep a bit more, I’ll come up with some sort of direction for this Pearl, which, thus far, is completely lost…. Brave, and unafraid, but lost….

I’ll be back….

I’m back… I think. Enough so that I know my tricking of Murphy worked, well enough, it seems, to have dodged whatever nasty bullet he had  planned for today…. and, in celebration of a successful display of cowardice, we’ll close off this intro (you hadn’t noticed that, had you?….), and get on with the rest of today’s mess, such as it may be….. Method #4 should work nicely, I think….

Shall we Pearl?….

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

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As noted, today has displayed a high probability of being slated for strangeness; to be frank, which is difficult, as I’m Ned, not frank…. but, if I were, I’d say we’ve already reached that stage…. I know I have, and if that’s true, it would be even more difficult to avoid having the strangeness bleed into this pearl…. Since we’re being frank, I have to say it’s too late….

To salvage what otherwise might turn on us, I’m putting in a headline here, one with some pretty good information….. Read this, if you would, please… then, we’ll talk…. That is, if I can think of anything worth saying about it…. Most all bets are off at this point, as to whether or not we can pull this off…. Myself, I think we can, though it may cost a couple of broken bones…. no big deal, as long as they’re MY bones, right?…. Okay, I’ll stop now, & let you read this….

http://blog.sfgate.com/hottopics/2014/06/23/recap-heres-30-recent-studies-on-the-effects-of-marijuana/#24367101=0

Excellent summary of recent research, almost all positive re: the effects of long-term use of cannabis and/or cannabinoids in general. I’m encouraged, both by the positive nature of all of what is brought out here, but, also by the recent court decisions right here in California, making the process of legalizing medical cannabis that much more of a done deal…. Soon, between the latest advances in the LGBT arena, and this one, American culture might just start to look as if the people were ready to enter the 21st century, along with the rest of the world….

Of course, that is partially an illusion; there are still a LOT of people in this country with what I like to call the dead-brain syndrome, characterized by bigotry, racism, misogyny, and a general refusal to use more than one neuron at a time…. They all go to a Christian church, wear blue suits with red ties and a flag pin, and spend most of their time in the modern world either closing their eyes, or their ears, so they don’t have to see or hear anything that offends their sensibilities…. Murricans, I call them, in close resemblance to their butchering of the country’s name…. These are people who cannot speak their own language without making it sound ignorant….

Sorry, got off into a minor pocket of outrage…. Stupidity is rampant in this country, and it offends me constantly…. Worse than even this stupidity is the even more prevalent attitude of deliberate ignorance, which has to be a choice…. a choice that infuriates me. When I see one of these fat, racist bigots talking on TV, spewing their ignorant hatred over all they see, it makes my fingers itch, for a bow, or a gun, or some other way to put an end to the idiocy of their existence…. It’s a bit harsh, but, there is no other cure for deliberate ignorance…. As I’ve noted in the past, stupidity can’t be helped, and has a certain charm; deliberate ignorance is ugly, and deserves any harsh treatment it engenders from me, or anyone else with any honor in their veins…

I see that I’ve managed to spew now for quite a while, without ever settling in to one theme, other than a very general poking at white Christian bigoted misogynists… of which there are millions of unpleasant examples to witness, in this country alone…. and they breed like fricking rabbits! Oh well, what the hell, it makes for more targets, eh?….. I am not sure exactly how we got into all this, as we started this section relatively positively…. Somewhere along the line, it turned on me…. which is okay, as it got all that built-up vitriol out of my head, where it has obviously been festering for some time…. Better out than in, eh?….

I think what I’ll do now is drop y’all like a stone, off the edge of the precipice upon which we just poised ourselves…. but, we’ll pad the landing area with a group of pearls, which will close off this section with some dignity, or, if nothing else, a bit of pointed humor…. Well, we can hope, can’t we?…. I think a five-star pearl will do nicely….

“Among the rich you will never find a really generous man even by accident. They may give their money away, but they will never give themselves away; they are egotistic, secretive, dry as old bones. To be smart enough to get all that money you must be dull enough to want it.” — G. K. Chesterton, A Miscellany of Men

“Fear is the main source of superstition, and one of the main sources of cruelty. To conquer fear is the beginning of wisdom, in the pursuit of truth as in the endeavour after a worthy manner of life.  — Bertrand Russell, “An Outline of Intellectual Rubbish”

“Intelligence has nothing to do with politics.” — Londo Molari

“…this would be the best of all possible worlds, if there were no”religion in it.” — John Adams, Letter to Thomas Jefferson, 1816

“When asked what learning was the most necessary, he said, “Not to unlearn what you have learned.” — Diogenes Laertius (c. 200 AD) — Antisthenes, iv

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Here is one of mine that I haven’t reprinted in a while; it’s not bad, IMHO….

Dreaming, I wait….

In the most patient moments of rationality
kindness flows smoothly in a special milieu,
fallow thoughts speed first from equality
to give no anxious fever, anger to eschew.

Indignant mothers and step-sons in-law
shall fade simply from brilliant to grey,
intoning ritual dogma, fresh, avid, and raw,
falling, falling, in massive pastoral disarray.

Safety lives not, save brightly in ignorant bliss,
it follows us all, silent and infinitely frail,
foremost too often, soft as a virgin kiss,
alive, always eager, willing, and pale.

Intimate knowledge finds only the bold few
with courage and virtue to gift, unbidden.
No solemn royal version may pass in review,
true love for man, never to remain unhidden.

Sweet feathers of Emily’s hope uplift,
calm, drowsy episodes bursting with light,
With final glad cries we set ourselves adrift,
swimming in the oceans of natural delight.

When sorrow is banished, in ages yet to come,
roots solidly anchored, cold and remote,
Ample supplies of kindness sit silent and dumb,
and the old stranger shrugs on his faded coat.

Dreaming, then, I wait with shadows in the night
aspiring to inspire, a message from the muse’s heart
Never forgotten images, framed in color bright,
tempt me only, grieving, steeped in serenity’s arcane art….

~~ gigoid ~~

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I’ve been cruising my archives again, and keep finding rants or discussions worth reprinting; this fits in perfectly with my lazy nature, as well as providing me with material I know is already proofed….. It’s not much, but, it helps….. Plus, I’m finding that much of what I wrote in this period has a certain sharp edge I have trouble matching these days…. I was, at the time, living a much less comfortable life, and it shows in what I wrote during that period…. For now, it fills my need for something to finish this Pearl with panache, or, the closest I come to it…. Enjoy!…..

From 5/7/2012:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“Every sensible man, every honest man, must hold the Christian sect in horror. But what shall we substitute in its place? you say. What? A ferocious animal has sucked the blood of my relatives. I tell you to rid yourselves of this beast and you ask me what you shall put in its place?” — Voltaire

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This one kind of got away from me a little…. That’s what happens when I have too much energy; it comes into conflict with my bone-deep, inherent laziness, and we end up with an epic pearl, which will surely drive the easily intimidated elsewhere…. So be it…. It’s way too late to go back & do it over, and, besides, I like it…. such as it is…. It will do, and that is the essential ingredient…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes….

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

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

Which is Why….


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

gigoid the dubious

Featured Image -- 2780

Building rapport by flapping gums, Mambo-style….

Ffolkes,

Zip….

Zilch….

Nada…. which translates as “Not a damn thing”….

Nothing….

Nope, not yet….

Hmm…. huh? Oh, sorry, no, nothing yet…

Hell, at this rate, I may as well go back to bed….

That’s it, I give up….

I was waiting for inspiration to strike, but, it seems to have taken the day off, along with Calliope, or whichever muse is involved with the written word, outside of poetry…. Calliope probably has more to do with music, by the sound of her name, and it really doesn’t matter a damn bit, because none of them are here, or are willing to help today, so, fuck ‘em…. We can’t wait any longer, and I’m just getting more p.o.’d by the moment…. I should have know better than to take one of them at their word; they may be iconic forces of nature, but, they ARE female….

Before you get all pissy at me for being sexist, I’m not…. Well, maybe a little….  I have one (a sex, that is…), so, it’s natural to have a bit of an attitude that sees the issue from that perspective…. With that in mind, it remains my opinion, based on my experience, that it is the nature of women, as a separate entity from men, to be less than truthful, if they have a reason to believe the truth would not serve their purposes.

I’m not saying men are any better at it than women, sadly, but, our code of honor (at least, for those of us who have one…) will cause us to at least CONSIDER telling the truth SOME of the time…. From what I can tell from a lifetime of observation, the truth, to women, is something they use at whim, to suit their purpose…. I have yet to find ONE who is completely honest, at least when it comes to what they tell men…. Sorry, but, that is the truth, ffolkes, and you can call me whatever you like, but, it remains the truth….

I don’t hold it against them, most of the time; it’s part of their nature, one dictated by Mother Nature as part of their role as the primary care giver for children….. A woman must think FIRST of survival, of herself, and of her children; this is natural law, and not subject to change at this late date in our development…. Thus, it is clearly not in their interest to consider telling the truth, if it won’t help them survive, or protect their young…. The truth, to women, is primarily a tool, one they use to meet their needs, but, not something they consider written in stone…. which is fine, from an evolutionary standpoint….

On a personal level, however, since women are really no more ethical or moral than men, and possibly less, given this characteristic, this tendency on the part of the fairer sex has caused me no end of hurt over the course of my life…. Of course, the answer to the whole issue is clear, anyway…. All one needs to do to protect themselves against the kind of problems that untruthfulness creates is to cultivate the ability to NOT expect to be told the truth…. that’s it.

If one doesn’t expect the truth, it isn’t a disappointment when one is lied to…. It’s still a bother, and a mild pain, but, at least it doesn’t take one by surprise, which is usually what causes the worst of any reaction to such prevarication…. In other words, don’t expect women to be anything other than what they are…. human, and flawed, just like men… Once one sees the whole picture from this perspective, it becomes possible to appreciate the opposite sex in full, for what they actually are, not what we fantasize them to be…..

Okay, well, that was interesting, if a bit risky to my health & well-being…. I’m not sure, exactly, how we got off into THAT particular subject, but, I think we’ll drop it there, as it is one that tends to create more controversy than it warrants…. The ongoing war between the sexes, to my mind, is fabricated by the media, and those in society who spend more time thinking about other folk’s behavior than they do monitoring their own…. along with all the gullible fools who buy into that sort of nonsense to begin with….

It’s all a bunch of BS, anyway, as I’ve found, after many years of trying to disengage from the battle, the primary key to successful relationships is honest communication, something both sides of the human species need to work on, especially when dealing with each other…. An attitude of appreciative acceptance of the true nature of the beast, on BOTH sides of the issue, is the key to successful relations with the opposite gender….

Why, look, though! It seems my blathering, even if it’s about a real, honest-to-goodness issue from reality, has once again brought us sufficiently far down the page to call this a legal introduction…. Of course, it does nothing to introduce anything, other than as a sort of separating line between the silence, and the cacophony which now ensues…. but, then, around here, we don’t expect it to do that, nor would we know what to do if it did….

Besides, it’s becoming increasingly apparent to me that if I ever do figure out how to do this section easily, it may just be the death knell of this whole process…. and we wouldn’t want that, now, would we? Would we? Hey, aren’t you going to answer that?….. Ah hell, never mind…. let’s get on with this….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“Jo Jo was a man who thought he was a woman…” — Lennon & McCartney

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Having gone completely off the rails in the intro section (not to mention risking my male neck with a discussion of the ongoing battle between the sexes….) I think we’ll start today with an old-school pearl, just to sort of clear the pipes, or the air, or other such euphemisms for getting on with it…. Let’s see what SB has for us today….

“Life without learning is death.” — Cicero

“When we are planning for posterity, we ought to remember that virtue is not hereditary.” — Thomas Paine “Common Sense”

“All forms of government are pernicious, including good government.” — Edward Abbey

“The conventional view serves to protect us from the painful job of thinking.” — J. K. Galbraith

“To the intelligent man or woman, life appears infinitely mysterious. But the stupid have an answer for every question.” — Edward Abbey

“If you work on your mind with your mind, how can you avoid an immense confusion?” — Seng-Ts’an

In a message announcing victory in the naval battle of Lake Erie in the War of 1812, Oliver Hazard Perry informed the American land armies, “We have met the enemy, and they are ours.”

In one of the earliest expressions of ecological concern, Walt Kelley’s cartoon characters stood in their polluted swampland home, where Pogo sadly informed his companions, “We have met the enemy, and they are us.”
220px-Pogo_-_Earth_Day_1971_poster
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I’ve searched for some time now, and can’t make up my mind on a poem for today…. To save time, and because I can’t find anything more appropriate to today’s tenuous theme, here is a poem I wrote during the National Poetry Writing Challenge in April of 2013…. such as it is….

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 ~~


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

“Believe me!  The secret of reaping the greatest fruitfulness and the greatest enjoyment from life is to live dangerously!” — Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (1844-1900)

This section was originally scheduled for another episode of the Life and Times of Wise Old Pine Cone, but, the Wise One has been busy with his new student, and he wasn’t able to let me get enough pictures to make an entry…. but, we’re working on it…. For today, I DO have a couple of pictures that I got one day last week…. We were talking about advanced techniques of meditation, and the Old Cone revealed his power by demonstrating the art of disappearing…. Look closely at these photos, and you’ll see an amazing feat of martial artistry, and the power of the mind….

The two photos below were taken in the space of two seconds, which is enough to show the effect, though not the actual disappearance, which is too fast for even a digital camera…. Watch….

Here is the master, seated on his meditation stool….

June 18 2014 003Now, two seconds later, the same stool….

June 18 2014 004Amazing, isn’t it? Next, in the picture below, we see the master, almost naturally hidden by his own natural camouflage, standing by a bush….

June 18 2014 005Without moving the camera, two seconds later, this is what it saw…..

June 18 2014 006    Absolutely incredible, eh? That would be a handy little trick, if one was involved with say, a group of NSA myrmidons, who want to discuss my politics, at THEIR house…. Being able to leave whenever I wish could be a good thing…. Regardless of my paranoia, though, it’s pretty amazing, isn’t it?

I can’t wait to see what he comes up with next!…..

“The Way of the sage is to act but not to compete.” — Lao Tzu

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

It seems I’m done…. which, given my lack of mental organization today, is not just a surprise, it’s a moral victory…. Hell, I would have laid even money today’s post would end up mostly from the archives; since it didn’t, I figure it’s got to be counted on the positive side of the scale…. But, then, I do tend to foster delusional beliefs in my own free time, so, I suppose we’d best take that, and just play it as it lies…. All of which means, of course, that I can now bring this to a close, which will greatly please my thumb, throbbing with each keystroke as it is…. It’ll be fine tomorrow, most likely, so, see ya, ffolkes…..

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

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

Which is Why….


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

gigoid the dubious

Featured Image -- 2780

It ain’t the curiosity, it’s the stubbornness….

Ffolkes,

Forty-eleven different things COULD go here…. in fact, at one point or another, they all have…. gone there, I mean. All forty-eleven of them were more appropriate than this sort of faux-intimate chatter, but, since retiring, I seem to find a lot of things I like to do that aren’t appropriate…. Too bad, so sad, but, what’re  ya gonna do? I don’t seem to be able to find a spot in me anywhere that gives a shit, so, the world is just going to have to deal with this one on those terms, and, again, too bad, so sad if it doesn’t like it, because, hey, this may be a world controlled by faceless, shadowy psychopaths, but, it’s still MY head, and nobody gets to tell it what it can do, or think, but me…. So there….

Okay, take a breath, self….

Now that we have the disclaimer out of the way, I suppose there’s another chance here for me to come up with something elegant and stylish to start off today’s Pearl…. Y’know what, though? Elegant and stylish, somehow, just doesn’t seem to fit my mood today, a mood which, if I HAD to describe it in one word, that word would be “unforgiving”….. Yep, more than merely curmudgeonly, more than just a bit grumpy, today I’m feeling like, if anyone, at all, gives me any trouble, or even hints at wanting to do so, they’re going to find themselves in a world of hurt, much akin to how they might feel after having a rugby team use them for a tackling dummy….

Oh, don’t fret, no Gentle Reader has ever been permanently harmed during the creation of these Pearls, and I have no intention of allowing that record to be broken, not today, not ever…. In spite of how it may sound, my bark is much less harmful than my bite…. wait, is that backwards? Okay, well, it’s probably more accurate that way, anyway, so we’ll let it go, and just remind you that pain can be our friend…..

What the hell am I saying? Pain is NEVER our friend; it may be a valuable part of our perception, laying down boundaries that tell us how close to actual damage we are getting, but, actually calling it friendly can lead to corruption of those senses, skewing our view of reality…. It can make us afraid to take risks, if we allow it to decide for us how close we can come to the edge of physical endeavor without falling over….. WE are the ones with a mind, and we need to make those decisions by using more than just one set of parameters, which is what pain is limited to providing….

I know, that’s all a bit esoteric, especially with only one cup of coffee in me…. We’ll let it lie there, as it is, and pretend it isn’t really part of this at all…. It shouldn’t be hard, as there isn’t really much there to chew on; it’s all pretty low-cal brain-food…. In fact, if I’m not mistaken, with this paragraph, we’ve reached the point for which we’ve been slogging…. We’re at the legal limit for intros, and, considering the lack of ANY worthwhile material that, thus far, has been included today, it’s for certain we should immediately employ emergency method #4, and make our escape while we may….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“The options described above  interact with  each  other in strange and as yet to be defined ways.” — Unix Manual, pr(1)

“I’m just sitting here watching the wheels go round and round.” — John Lennon

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

Rather than rant, I’m reprinting a Pearl from 2011, near the very beginning of this blog…. The format was different then; all completed Pearls were in the style you see here, with an intro, and an old-school group of pearls to make the point for the day…. This discussion can lend some validity and perspective to the recent public dialogue regarding the growing gap between the rich and the poor….

At the time this was written, I was a member of that part of society that exists on about HALF of the income that would make life even remotely comfortable; in fact, it was just enough to survive, with NO real quality of life to be found…. Quality costs money, as the BRC is well-aware…. Before I begin to rant, I give you the Daily Pearl of Virtual Wisdom from from 9/10/2011, the day BEFORE the 10th anniversary of a date everyone knows:

Ffolkes,

In all the literature I’ve read over the years, a lot of different authors have painted a picture of the life of those living in poverty. These intent of these pictures is to create in the reader an empathy for the plight of the economically challenged (this phrase, while politically correct, bears no real resemblance to the actuality of being poor, and as such, is inherently evil.  It doesn’t describe the reality; it puts another barrier between the real world and the meaning of the written word.This makes it easy to deny the reality, removing any true connection to the feelings involved….). But the empathy created is tempered by what is not painted into the picture. For the last nine months or so, I’ve been introduced to the life of the under-funded, and can state unequivocally that two important pieces of the experience of being poor in this country are missing from the usual descriptions.

It has been said that a hungry man is never bored; I can tell you from first-hand knowledge that this is true. Not knowing where the next meal is coming from keeps the mind focused the search for food/money, and creates a state wherein one cannot afford to spend time on the luxury of boredom. What is missing here are the feelings that accompany that focused state, to wit: a constant, low-grade fear, always present in the background, causing the stomach to jump, the heart to beat faster, and the mind to spend precious energy to keep the fear at bay.

This fear increases the urgency of everything; having to constantly turn the mind to finding money/food adds a flavor of desperation to everything act, and every perception. Former activities that brought relaxation are no longer sought out, there’s no time for them. Never relaxing has a cumulative effect, and the cycle spins faster and faster, contributing even more anxiety to the system. I often feel as if I’m one of those little hamsters on a spinning wheel, a wheel that has no way to stop, and no way to get off…..

The other part that most descriptions of the state of poverty seldom mention is the sense of bone-deep humiliation that goes along with having to ask for help or charity. I can say without hesitation that this is perhaps the worst part of having to struggle to get by, probably because all my life I have been fairly successful, at least to the extent that money and food were not primary issues. Having to ask for a loan from a friend or relative is possibly the most embarrassing and humiliating experience that I have ever had.

Just sitting here writing about it has me tearing up; one of the more unwelcome side effects of post-traumatic stress syndrome is how powerful emotions can surface at the slightest provocation, causing even more embarrassment, and making competent, effective action even more difficult to carry out. Self-confidence is not abetted by feeling humiliated, and self-respect becomes non-existent.

The only way I have found to lessen the despair and fear is to try to remember that things could be worse. Difficult as it may be, and I assure you it is, finding positive notes in the song of life currently being played always helps lessen the sense of dread that is my constant companion. Diving for, and reading, pearls of virtual wisdom helps too; contact with better minds than my own is uplifting, if only for the sense of hope that can be kindled by reading something inspirational, or an idea beautifully expressed. True beauty heals merely by its touch…..

I went diving for pearls yesterday, and found a lot of good quality stuff; here are a few of them……

“Of all the tyrannies that affect mankind, tyranny in religion is the worst.” — Thomas Paine

All nature is but art, unknown to thee;
All chance, direction, which thou canst not see;
All discord, harmony not understood;
All partial evil, universal good;
And spite of pride, in erring reason’s spite,
One truth is clear, Whatever is, is right.

– Alexander Pope (1688-1744) — Essay on Man, Epistle i, Line 289

“The world has achieved brilliance without conscience. Ours is a world of nuclear giants and ethical infants.  We know more about war than we know about peace, more about killing than we know about living.  We have grasped the mystery of the atom and rejected the Sermon on the Mount.” — General Omar N. Bradley (1893-1981)
(And he ought to know….)

“Children today are tyrants.  They contradict their parents, gobble their food, and tyrannize their teachers.” — Socrates (470?-399 B.C.)

“I prefer to be true to myself, even at the hazard of incurring the ridicule of others, rather than to be false, and to incur my own abhorrence.” — Frederick Douglass

Never be boastful; someone may come along who knew you as a child. — Chinese Proverb

An odd group, but mine own…..y’all take care out there….

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

Some days, it’s got to be a classic…..

A child said, What is the grass?

A child said, What is the grass? fetching it to me with full hands;
How could I answer the child?. . . .I do not know what it is any more than he.

I guess it must be the flag of my disposition, out of hopeful green stuff woven.

Or I guess it is the handkerchief of the Lord,
A scented gift and remembrancer designedly dropped,
Bearing the owner’s name someway in the corners, that we
    may see and remark, and say Whose?

Or I guess the grass is itself a child. . . .the produced babe of the vegetation.

Or I guess it is a uniform hieroglyphic,
And it means, Sprouting alike in broad zones and narrow zones,
Growing among black folks as among white,
Kanuck, Tuckahoe, Congressman, Cuff, I give them the same, I receive them the same.

And now it seems to me the beautiful uncut hair of graves.

Tenderly will I use you curling grass,
It may be you transpire from the breasts of young men,
It may be if I had known them I would have loved them;
It may be you are from old people and from women, and
    from offspring taken soon out of their mother’s laps,
And here you are the mother’s laps.

This grass is very dark to be from the white heads of old mothers,
Darker than the colorless beards of old men,
Dark to come from under the faint red roofs of mouths.

O I perceive after all so many uttering tongues!
And I perceive they do not come from the roofs of mouths for nothing.

I wish I could translate the hints about the dead young men and women,
And the hints about old men and mothers, and the offspring taken soon out of their laps.

What do you think has become of the young and old men?
What do you think has become of the women and children?

They are alive and well somewhere;
The smallest sprouts show there is really no death,
And if ever there was it led forward life, and does not wait at the end to arrest it,
And ceased the moment life appeared.

All goes onward and outward. . . .and nothing collapses,
And to die is different from what any one supposed, and luckier.

~~ Walt Whitman ~~


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

Today’s picture pearl will be a bit special… While walking the other day, I found a Wise Old Pine Cone…. You got a glimpse of him the other day, as I took a picture of him, while telling you he would be the featured guest in future picture pearls…. True to my word, here is the first series of pictures detailing the adventures of the Wise Old Pine Cone, as he accompanies me on my journeys around the Big Blue Room, on one of my camera safaris….. Enjoy!…..

June  9 2014 038Wise Old Pine Cone making a statement about littering….

June  9 2014 039Wise Old Pine Cone posing for a picture with a group of friends….

June  9 2014 040Wise Old Pine Cone in an intimate discussion with friends during a visit….

June  9 2014 042Wise Old Pine Cone enjoying a sunbath with some more friends…. magical wild wheat, basking in the spring sunshine….

June  9 2014 047Wise Old Pine Cone making fun of authority….

June  9 2014 048Wise Old Pine Cone stoop-sitting, waiting for a promised iced tea….

June  9 2014 035Wise Old Pine Cone, home at last…. Can you spot him?…. No, of course not, he’s not in this picture…. Silly readers….

Today, we are taking the envelope to the shredder…. Above are seven photos, displaying the Wise Old Pine Cone on our rounds… Below are seven pearls, all lustrously elegant, ineffably stylish; in short, everything I’ve been looking for since we began today, but could never find, until now…. The part that takes the envelope out of the picture (so to speak…) is that you have to decide for yourselves which aphorism matches up with which picture…. Let me know if you figure it out, and we’ll see if we can’t come up with a prize of some sort, okay?…. Or, just read, and enjoy….

I ‘d be a butterfly born in a bower,
Where roses and lilies and violets meet.

– Thomas Haynes Bayly (1797-1839) — I ‘d be a Butterfly

“Some people confuse boredom with security.” — Smart Bee

“That life is worth living is the most necessary of assumptions, and were it not assumed, the most impossible of conclusions.” — George Santayana

“No man ever wetted clay and then left it, as if there would be bricks by chance and fortune.” — Plutarch (46-120 AD) — Of Fortune

“If you stand straight, do not fear a crooked shadow.’ — Chinese Proverb

“Truth needs no flowers of speech.” — Alexander Pope

“Life without learning is death.” — Cicero

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I think I built a new neruonic pathway or three today, ffolkes…. Sheer laziness strikes again! In trying to figure out how to get this done, without expending any more mental energy than absolutely necessary, I think I had to forge new paths in my brain, for all the new, strange algorithms, showy yet meaningless philosophical distractions, and tricky instructions for achieving some user interaction, or at least, confusion, which I came up with in producing today’s outburst…. If nothing else, though, it IS done. Or, I think it’s done… I’d better check….

Yep…

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

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

Which is Why….


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

gigoid the dubious

Featured Image -- 2780

Naturally, the investment of prior absolution for future transgressions received gratis by agnostics causes catechism envy in devout Catholics, and numerous Episcopalians….

Ffolkes,

Since retiring in 2011, (2010, technically, but, ’11 was my first full year in that state, so, we’ll use it as the jumping-off point, for the sake of mathematical convenience….), I’ve been slowly, steadily having more problems with my ambulation, as my spine, hip & shoulder joints, and overall level of arthritic deterioration reaches levels of effect that can’t be ignored, or compensated for, without paying a price, measured in steps of the 10-point scale of pain…. This includes whatever pinching of my sciatic nerves is going on to create the numbness that forms on my thighs when I stand, or walk, too long…. I can now only get a couple of blocks before sitting down for a recovery period becomes mandatory, lest I go into distressed metabolic crisis mode from the grinding pain that builds up….

Now, I’m a tough guy, for the most part…. Football, basketball, judo, and kung fu (to name just a few of the sporting activities I once pursued, daily….) taught me well, how to use my body to the limit of its strength and ability, while ignoring certain levels of pain, which were part and parcel of smashing into other’s bodies in football, and other sports, as well as the physical training involved in the martial arts, not to mention throws, kicks, punches, blocks, and many other skills that are painful to learn; learning to turn off pain’s demands on our attention is a primary skill of any athlete, or martial artist…. Pain becomes another motivational factor, not a limitation….

Then, of course, age related issues intervene, and one can no longer tolerate the physical demands of sports and the arts; for me, this began around age 40-45, when certain issues involving digestion became the foremost point of experience for me…. It’s a condition called diverticulosis, and there are physical aspects of having it that preclude certain athletic pastimes, so, starting at that age, my level of conditioning began to decline, and I began to experience more pain, of several different types….

Why, you are asking about now, is he regaling us with these tales of woe from his past? Hell, I’m not exactly sure…. except that this morning, pain is foremost in my mind, since my body decided to gift me with two of three possible types of pain, both at a level I can’t quite get stuffed into the box where it won’t affect me so badly…. which, in turn, is making it hard to concentrate on this Pearl…. So, in what may have been poor judgment, I decided to try to use it as a springboard for discussion, and lead into today’s Pearl that way…. However, it seems to be more of a bitch-fest, and that wasn’t what I had in mind for today, by a long shot….

I think I was going to try to turn the discussion into how to deal with pain effectively, but, since I can’t seem to do that myself this morning, trying to tell y’all how to do it might be asking more of my writing skills than is wise…. It also might be more of an intellectual challenge than I’m up to, as I can’t seem to concentrate for long on any one thought…. That makes writing, or ranting, or even pearling, particularly problematic…. Since that’s all I do here, it’s going to be touch and go as to whether or not this bombs completely….

I’m going to take a chance, though, and continue on to the rest of today’s effort…. It may turn out to be a mistake, but, that’s a risk worth taking, to get past this morning’s wonderful state of agony with a bit of aplomb….

Shall we Pearl?…..

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

I definitely don’t have an organized, official-type rant in me today, so I’m going to use a pearl format that I’ve used a few times previously, to good effect…. I’ll let SB pick out five pearls, then I’ll comment on them, hopefully in a way that will lead us somewhere worth being…. or, we could end up somewhere we’ll never find our way home from…. It’s a risk, but, I’m pretty confident I can find my way back from wherever we find ourselves, so, let’s give it a whirl….

A little learning is a dangerous thing;
Drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring:
There shallow draughts intoxicate the brain,
And drinking largely sobers us again.

– Alexander Pope (1688-1744) — Essay on Criticism, Part ii, Line 15

It’s always good to start with a poetic pearl; it’s just classier…. This, of course, is a very familiar poem, (Okay, it’s actually an excerpt from a larger poem…. be that way….) even to those people who don’t read a lot of poetry. The first line has become almost a cliche in common speech patterns, as it has been used ever since first appearing, to indicate the perils of both possessing knowledge, and the lack of it, when reasoning, or, trying to reason…. It is only those of us who go on to read the rest of the epic poem who can truly understand the poignancy of this lament, as the last two lines of the quatrain show plainly the marked price of original sin…. and, in the process, gives us a hint of WHY we ate the apple…. Powerful stuff, of which Pope created a LOT…..

“You don’t tell deliberate lies, but sometimes you have to be evasive.” — Margaret Thatcher

When I first saw this, I thought it was the PERFECT way to show how the thought processes of politicians operate; upon reflection, I believe it to be even better than that, as it shows not only WHAT virtually every one of them thinks, but, also shows the self-delusion that MUST take place in a pundit’s mind for them to turn that direction….

This little statement implies that, not only is a little white lie okay, when it’s for the good of those who are being led (“good”, naturally, being decided by the one elected, not the folks being led….), it’s practically a duty to lie, in order to be in the position to make that decision for others (you HAVE to be evasive?)….. Of course, this doesn’t admit to possessing, or come anywhere near any display of ANY sort of ethical, or moral reasons for acting in this manner, as there aren’t any that are justifiable…. That, unfortunately, has never seemed to matter much to them, or kept them from making up their lies….

“Accept the things to which fate binds you, and love the people with whom fate brings you together, but do so with all your heart.” — Marcus Aurelius

Okay, so, this one ISN’T about politicians, or preachers, or corporate snakeheads…. it’s about Life at Large, and how to live it well… And, darn it, it doesn’t need any more embellishment from me…. Oh, well, onward….

LAWYER: A professional advocate hired to bend the law on behalf of a paying client; for this reason considered the most suitable background for entry into politics. — Definition from “THE CYNIC’S DICTIONARY”

Now THAT’s what I’m talking about!…. This is a wonderful observation, made all the more appealing to me because it SOUNDS as if it is said in jest, when, in truth, it is a perfectly sober, accurate definition, based on long-term observation of Reality, as it pertains to society and culture….

Our government is inundated in lawyers; in certain circles, of which I am a conversant member, we refer to their presence in such numbers as an infestation, which gives a better feel for what they’re really like, to wit: vermin, such as rats, mice, or fleas…. the assholes…. As Jay Leno once noted, the definition of the word “politics” is from the Greek…. That is “poli” from “poly”, meaning “many”, and “tics”, meaning, “small, blood sucking vermin”….

Sorry, maybe I DO have a bit of a rant in there…..

“Nations and empires flourish and decay,
By turns command, and in their turns obey.

– Ovid

Now this is a very deep, incredibly insightful little couplet, from an poetess who lived well over 2000 years ago…. Even then, so long ago, there were enough ffolkes who could see the grand folly that permeates human society and culture, and were able to foretell the outcome of their own era’s repetition of what had gone before…. Now, if only we could get some of those who are in the position of leadership in this country to comprehend this concept, there might be a better chance for us to survive….

I’m not particularly hopeful that will ever happen, though, as I’m firmly convinced the men and women who inhabit the halls of our government wont’ ever get a clue, as they have what they consider more important work to do, that of emptying as much of the public treasury as they can fit into their own pockets; that doesn’t leave them room enough to accommodate, or even entertain, any such altruistic notion as species survival…. more’s the pity….

So, there you have it, a pearl of nondescript origin, in a reasonably new, different format, to take the place of what would probably have been merely another indictment of a lot of guilty folks, which happens often here, and is no doubt becoming a bit stale…. Hopefully, this little breath of fresh air will clear the atmosphere sufficiently to allow us a bit of breathing room, so we can come back to rant again another day…. When I do, I’ll be using this brilliant manifesto of technique, voiced by an old British bulldog, who became a politician, though reluctantly, I think….

“If you have an important point to make, don’t try to be subtle or clever. Use a pile driver. Hit the point once. Then come back and hit it again. Then hit it a third time–a tremendous whack.” — Sir Winston Churchill

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

Having begun the day, in section one, with a bit of classicism, it must be time for another reprint of an old favorite, from one of the masters…. 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 ~~

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

As noted, today, pain is causing this process to move along at a rapid pace, without a lot of heavy thought, which would be beyond my current capabilities…. It’s really too bad, too, because I’d hoped to spend a bit of time today visiting a few of my regulars, to let them know how much I appreciate seeing them at my site each day…. That will probably have to wait until, at least, later in the day, if I can manage to get some relief… In the meantime, here is a fresh, old-school pearl, with parameters set to let SB pick today, as I don’t have the patience to sit that long…. Hope it comes out okay….

“The more you know, the more confusing everything becomes.” — Smart Bee

“Man, were he not corrupted by Governments, is naturally the friend of Man, and that human nature is not of itself vicious.” — Thomas Paine

“It is not necessary that whilst I live I live happily; but it is necessary that so long as I live I should live honourably.” — Kant, Immanuel (1724-1804)

“Following the Noble Path is like entering a dark room with a light in the hand; the darkness will all be cleared away, and the room will be filled with light.” — Buddha

“It seems like once people grow up, they have no idea what’s cool.” — Calvin & Hobbes

“His own character is the arbiter of every one’s fortune.” — Publius Syrus (42 BC) — Maxim 283

“I may not understand what you say, but I’ll defend to your death my right to deny it.” — Albert Alligator, in Pogo, 26 September 1951

Hmm… a little obscure, but, all in all, not bad at all…. I’ll take it.

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

As well, since I have little choice in the matter, at least, none uninfluenced by the level of pain I’m currently living with, I’ll take whatever is above, as is…. No matter how many potential typos it has, it’s going out sans editing or proofing, other than what I’ve managed to do while trying to swim this horse across the Rubicon, or the Styx, or whatever mystical, metaphorical river you choose to call it…. Me, I’m calling it done….

See you tomorrow, ffolkes, God willin’ and the creek don’t rise…. (Pido disculpas por la blashpemia, pero, es necessario para mantener mi dignidad, si no otra razón….) (I know, it’s probably well mangled Español, but, I don’t claim any particular fluency, just basic comprehension, suited to my purpose… Plus, as an obsessive type, I looked up the words I’d forgotten….) Ta ta, then….

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

Worldwide Celebration Held to Honor History’s Greatest Scam….

Ffolkes,

A huge CRACK! boomed outside the cheap apartment door, just as a neat, round hole appeared in that door, as well as in the forehead of the small, weaselly-looking excuse for a human who sat, forlornly, and now, deadly, in the middle of the couch…. Turning quickly, I moved away from the door, ducking into the next room, where I grabbed the small bag containing the gems…. Drawing my own gun from under my coat, I moved to the opposite door, carefully looking around the corner to the mirror on the hallway wall, placed there for just that purpose, to see if anyone tried to come through the now sacred door …. Sacred…. holy…. holey, get it? Well, nobody ever accused me of being a comedian, just a thief…. It’s a tough job, but, hey, somebody’s, etc…. Well, you know the rest….

Even if you do know the finish to that line, I think we’ll let it slide by without picking it up…. When I wrote that short paragraph, last night, it seemed better than when I look at it now, in the light of day (or, actually, in the dark of an early morn, which is more accurate….). It does, however, sit nicely there across the top of the post, looking just as if it were really the opening to a novel, or, at minimum, a short story, and, since our society believes firmly in the value of illusion, we’ll let it stay where it is…. It’ll get in less trouble that way….

So, how are y’all this fine Oester morn?…. (Oester would be the Wiccan, or possibly Druidic term for the date associated with the rites of Spring…) It looks to be a pretty nice day around here, weather-wise, though I can’t say how it will be INSIDE the churches, where all of the various categories of Christian cults will be holding their mass delusional celebration of history’s greatest scam…. (Yes, I know, that’s what the TITLE said, and we NEVER do that…. get over it, we did….)…. Yep, today’s the day when the whole story gets told again, and all the preachers, priests, and “reverend sirs” will be repeating the talking points of the story we all have had crammed down our throats since we were little, and had no defense against it….

I know my opinion about the Christian faith is unpopular, and, in many cases, reviled by those who have strong faith…. That’s okay, I expect nothing less from anyone who can fall for that story year after year, in spite of a) the sheer unbelievability of what they are asked to believe, and b) the glaring lack of ANY sort of conclusive evidence of ANY of the basic premises upon which the story is based…. At four years of age I spotted most of the flaws in the logic of the whole mess, and over time have come to believe the same as Thomas Paine, who famously said, “Any system of religion that has anything in it that shocks the mind of a child, cannot be true.”

Mr. Paine, one of our earliest true patriots, also said this about religion, to wit: “All national institutions of churches, whether Jewish, Christian or Turkish, appear to me no other than human inventions, set up to terrify and enslave mankind, and monopolize power and profit.” This, too, I firmly believe, as, every day, I see the hypocrisy and lies told by the BRC, which are then repeated in the pulpits around the nation in different words, complete with remonstrations to defer to secular authority, to support the ruling class, without whose cooperation their whole elaborately complex scam would fall apart…. It’s a good deal for both of them, as they perform the old “one-two” on the unsuspecting public, who believe these assholes actually have their best interests at heart….

Ah well, the intro probably isn’t the best place to rant, but, that’s what happens on days like today, when the sheer idiocy, not to mention all the wasted time, and loss of dignity that go hand in hand with the whole religion concept…. well, it gets to me, and I have a hard time not yelling at people to “GET A FUCKING CLUE!”….

Sorry, I don’t mean to yell, but, it’s just so frustrating to see how easily people will give up the use of their own minds, allowing these assholes, and their myrmidons, to tell them what they should think, so they don’t have to make the effort of doing so themselves, or to save themselves from the fear, and the necessity for self-reliance, honesty, and courage, that goes along with facing up to the big, bad world, and all of its scary inhabitants….

As far as I’m concerned, the Christian religion, or, more accurately, the dishonest suckwads who foist those outright lies on unsuspecting fools, for the purposes of their own aggrandizement, are responsible for much of what is wrong in today’s world, and, in my opinion, deserve nothing more than our disgust and anger, for being lied to, and for the endlessly manipulative attempts to control the lives of the less intelligent, and more gullible, members of society…. To my way of thinking, they deserve to inhabit the lowest depths of their own version of Hell, for the lies they have LIVED, and tried to pass on to others….

There, I got that off my chest, and may now go forth to finish this Pearl, which, no doubt, nobody will ever read, having been offended somehow by the above…. SIGH…. S’okay, I don’t mind…. much. As long as nobody tries to get ME to join in the festivities, or tries to convince me I am wrong, it should be a fairly nice day….

If someone DOES make that mistake, they will find me all-too-ready to discuss the issue, with passion and verve…. perhaps, a greater degree than that to which they may be accustomed, or desirous, but, that can’t be helped…. It’s been building up a long time, and I’ve never let it out on anyone, except here, on this blog, so it would probably be best for all if it never happened at all…. Trust me, I don’t think there would be much left, of whomever got the wild hair far enough up their ass to test me on this….

Shall we Pearl?…. I think we’d better do it now, before this gets me feeling any more aggressive than I am already….

Emancipate yourself from mental slavery,
None but ourselves can free our minds.

– Bob Marley

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Since the intro section turned into the rant for today, we’ll go old-school to start off the rest of the Pearl…. I’m not sure right now just what parameters I’ll use, but, you can be sure that whatever comes up today will have sharp points, so use some caution when handling them, okay? I am a bit low on sterile bandages, after the last few attempts to skim the treetops of religious dogma…. Those sycophantic dogma dogs can be vicious when they are made to feel exposed in their lies and scamming…. Let’s see what SB can find today, shall we?….

“Bullshit detector: when alarm sounds, please reengage brain.” — Smart Bee

Damn with faint praise, assent with civil leer,
And without sneering teach the rest to sneer;
Willing to wound, and yet afraid to strike,
Just hint a fault, and hesitate dislike.

– Alexander Pope (1688-1744) — Epistle to Dr. Arbuthnot, Prologue to the Satires, Line 201

(At first, this may seem out of place…. But, look at what Mssr. Pope says in these four lines, and think about any of the preachers or priests you’ve known…. Each of them (well, all of them that I ever met….) is a master at these techniques, all of which are taught to them in seminary, to use when arguing with us ideologues who don’t buy their line of BS…. They’re not actually argument techniques, that rely on logic or reasoning, but, rather, are conversational tricks, designed to make the one at whom they are directed feel as if they are lesser, that their words are foolish…. in short, dismissing any arguments without actually considering their merit…. A very valuable, and well-used tool from the bag, chock full of such trickery, that every preacher or priest is given upon graduation from their brainwashing seminaries….)

“Giving every man a vote has no more made men wise and free than Christianity has made them good.” — H.L. Mencken

(This one may not fit exactly, but, I couldn’t resist a pearl that takes a shot at both of my favorite targets….)

“Life is a process of becoming, a combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death.” — Anais Nin

(And, is exactly what happens when one is more afraid of living than they are of death….)

SCRIPTURES, n.  The sacred books of our holy religion, as distinguished from the false and profane writings on which all other faiths are based. — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

“As scarce as truth is, the supply has always been in excess of the demand.” — Josh Billings

“The Great Way is not difficult for those who have no preferences.” — Seng Ts’an, Third Zen Patriarch, — from Hsin Hsin Ming, Verses on the Faith Mind

There you go…. a bit esoteric, but, hey, it’s always a good thing to have to think harder than you expected…. trust me….

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Given the subject matter that has dominated today’s effort, we’ll go with a poem of mine that speaks to that issue, directly… I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it…

Rejection

“Jesus loves me, this I know,
For the Bible tells me so…”
I’d be crying a river, I thought
if ever such crap I bought.

Sorry if it hurts your sense of style,
but, hypocrisy always gives me bile.
Being lied to accidentally is okay,
but, deliberate lies make me angry, and fey.

Oh, God, hear what I pray!
Keep me from your followers today.
Having to listen to so much that is wrong
makes me puke, before it makes me strong.

I don’t know why it isn’t clear to other folks,
which is alright, you know; different strokes.
But, why should that mean that they must
force me to believe, or fail in trust?

Spare me the lies, and the make-believe,
fairy tales are easier to hear, and to weave.
They give us a lesson which we can feel
but don’t pretend at all to be real.

Reality can scare us, that’s a given fact;
still, met with care it will leave us mostly intact.
Met without fear, standing tall and alone
Life will allow us to make it our own.

Folly beckons, and so many follow;
mass delusions seem to me most hollow.
I’ll have to stick to my own chosen way
while so many go so sadly astray.

It’s lonely at times, it may seem sad,
but really isn’t, and I’m quite glad,
that knowledge is always stronger than fear,
year after year, tear after tear…..

~~ gigoid ~~

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I’ve already ranted, and made an old-school pearl, so that leaves me little choice, but to pull something from the archives for this section, as I’m not quite sure I’ve got more in me to write, at least, not anything worth writing…. This one, at least, is a good follow-up to yesterday’s discussion of this particularly volatile issue…..

From 4/20/13:

Quis custodiet ipsos Custodes? [Who guards the Guardians?] — Smart Bee

This is the perfect opening for a discussion of gun control, for me, as I believe strongly that this is the bottom line issue for that particular subject…… Sure, taking guns out of the hands of people who are insane is a good thing; nobody, I think, can argue that. The problem lies in figuring out WHO gets to decide what sanity is, the same issue that comes up in discussing getting rid of firearms altogether.

You see, I’m sorry, but, I just can’t bring myself to trust the Beloved Ruling Class to decide who is sane, and who isn’t. Part of this stems from the fact that I don’t consider anyone in public office to have a very tight grip on sanity to begin with…. How effective can it be to have insane people making the rules for deciding who is insane? Not very, I suspect….

Yet, I read many articles that profess the belief that the police, and the army, who naturally would have to have guns, (Why? If nobody is supposed to have them, why would they need them?), are more trustworthy than the common citizen. I’m sorry, but, just what planet did you say you came from?

It certainly isn’t Earth, because, last time I looked, all the police, all the folks in the army, and all the folks who tell them what to do, are all PEOPLE, just like anyone else, suffering the same fears, the same delusions or preconceptions, and the same lack of morality, as does the average Joe on the streets. In fact, due to my experience at observing and identifying psychiatric symptoms common to the insane, I can honestly state, I consistently see a higher percentage of police and military personnel who have a demonstrable lack of moral compass than I’ve seen in the general public.

Part of the problem is that the police and military, by their nature, end up as being attractive to the type of person who enjoys having power over others, whose self-image requires them to be in positions of authority, to be able to view themselves in a positive light, as successful. They equate money and power over others with success, and so gravitate to those sectors of society that deal in those commodities.

Normal, stable personality types seldom need to exercise power over others, and so avoid such pastimes, but to the selfish, and the sociopathic, the police and the army are seen as a path to what they term as success. If you see a flaw in this logic, please, enlighten me…. Until I see some evidence to the contrary, though, I find this to be a valuable, and accurate summation of the situation, thereby affording myself the opportunity to avoid the majority of their machinations, at least in a directly personal sense….

We all have to deal with them eventually though, so it’s good, I think, to be aware of the above arguments, as it will forewarn anyone who absorbs it, and takes it to heart, allowing them to defend themselves from the worst of the BRC’s attempts at repression, or oppression, if not all. 

I’ve always found it to be the best policy to maintain a high level of doubt when considering announcements and decrees, to constantly stay alert to the news, as well as to the meaning behind what I do see there, and, finally, to be ready to jump when the balloon goes up.

Things out in the Big Blue Room are getting a bit serious in spots, with potentially disastrous possibilities threatening us from several directions, so it would be a good thing to be ready for whatever may take place, no matter how insane it may appear to be from our current vantage point…. And remember, guard yourself, against the Guardians themselves, if need be…..

“The intuitive mind is a sacred gift; the rational mind is faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.” — Albert Einstein

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Today’s Pearl may lose me a few readers, but, that’s always true on those days when I start picking on religion…. It’s one of our species most strongly held beliefs, delusional or not, and it is of no matter who judges the truth of those beliefs…. any opposition at all is going to create some resentment, or at minimum, mistrust….and, for that, I’m sorry…. I have no wish to alienate people.

But, I also am compelled to tell the Truth, no matter how hard to swallow it may be…. It’s just the way I am, and the way I insist on living…. and, I’m enough of a curmudgeon to not care at all who is offended by that…. In my world, Truth comes FIRST…..  and THAT is a policy subject to no debate, whatsoever….

So be it…. gigoid the dubious has spoken…. 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 the dubious

dozer3

13 Simple Steps to A Newer, Cleaner Planetary Unit!

Ffolkes,

May seventeen foul demons from the deepest hells of Mordor make fun of your face! There, take that! I guess THAT will teach you!…. Back, foul fiends, begone with you!….

Huh? Oh, sorry, forgot it was time for that….. Half a second, let me just….. ugh! Okay…. last one dispatched…..Come on in, I was just putting away these old attitudes, and they didn’t want to go. I have new ones ordered up & delivered every few years, just to make sure the ones I have aren’t getting too inflexible, or unable to adapt to changing conditions…. Nowadays, what with the new, forced adaptations we’re going to be going through, it’s a good idea to rotate out the old ones regularly, lest one be caught with one’s spiritual pants down, so to speak… While the new ones are always cool, the service that delivers them doesn’t haul away the old ones, so, that part is up to me, & I thought I’d get a head-start on that this morning, since I was up at four in the AM….

Today, I’ll be creating a different sort of Pearl….. and I’m not even going to tell you how, or even why….. How, you may ask, am I able to show you such a fine example of showmanship, and still keep the inner workings of the process to yourself? You say I can’t ever seem to shut myself up, so how do I expect to do it now? Simple…. Oatmeal, dried into a crust, burnt, and shoved down my nose…. Then, we prop up my stiff carcass at the keyboard, boot up the computer, and hope for the best…. Seems to work pretty well, so far, every time…

Disgusting, yes? I hope so, that’s what I was shooting for…. I wouldn’t even have minded a case or too of spew, as long as y’all remembered to use the bags provided in the seat back in front of you. Oh, jeez, Harry, did you have to use the one with the hole in it? I told that flunky not to recycle them, but, do they listen? Of course not…. Well, sorry, I guess you can use the old towels in the corner there, and, if you need it, there’s some Windex in the cabinet under the bathroom sink…. go ahead and use that, if you think it will help…. Thanks for trying….

Well, now that the excitement is, hopefully, over with for one morning, (I’m not sure I want to encourage this much hilarity again; we’ve used up a pretty fair supply of paper towels, and we’re only done with four paragraphs or so….), WHERE shall we begin?…. Oh, I just have so many things I want to tell you…. I’ve been so busy, thinking, and…. oh, shit…. I’ve been thinking again, but, as usual, I forgot to fire up the backup server, so there’s no extra copy if I forge…… well, shit, again…. If I forget, is what I was saying, when it struck me forcefully that, hey, I already forgot!…. Damn…

Okay, new plan…. First we wobble, then we Pearl…. and since, by the evidence presented above, we’ve wobbled aplenty, we’ll now be going on to the meat of this sandwich, or, whatever may come next in this plane of Reality, such as we find it…. a bit worn, but still willing to play the game…..

Shall we Pearl?….

“These are the times that try men’s souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands it now, deserves the love and thanks of our men and women. Tyranny, like Hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives every thing its value.” — Thomas Paine
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Yesterday, part of the ranting portion of the program spoke about lawyers…. Serendipitously, one of the old pearls that I went to read, upon the suggestion of the WP suggestion bots, who put their ideas at the bottom of my posts, had a wonderful rant about lawyers, specifically, from way back in November of 2012…. Here ’tis, to finish off my remarks on those oh-so-despised members of our Asininny class…..

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“He who dies a thousand deaths meets the final hour with the calmness of one who approaches a well remembered door.” — Heywood Brown

I almost passed this by when I first read it, then I thought a moment about it, and it occurred to me that it sounds like a defense of cowardice, which is what we usually associate with the phrase “He who dies a thousand deaths”…. Upon further reflection, though, that phrase, though certainly appropriate for describing the state of uncontrolled fear that brings a human to react with cowardice, could also be used to describe some of my own experience in dealing with violence. To generalize that thought, it could be said that a person who faces situations where death is hovering nearby, always a threat to manifest its presence in reality, is also dying a death each time, because their imagination is always aware of that proximity of possibility….

I made the mistake once of counting how many times I faced off with a person who wanted to rip my head off, and would have done so had I not acted to prevent that from becoming reality. Suffice it to say it was entirely too many times, though somewhat less than a thousand (not by much, but less….), and my imagination was stimulated into conjuring visions of possible outcomes that included my own death, each and every time.

Of course, the key to success in such situations is to be able to put aside, or ignore, those visions, in order to keep them from becoming real, and I learned very well to react very quickly in a way that allowed me to control the outcome, rather than random chance or, worse, having the other party assume that control. Fortunately for all involved, I never lost…. at least, not in the sense of becoming physically injured, or dead. (Nobody else that I controlled was ever hurt or killed,  either, a fact I’m pretty proud of…. and mental injuries are another story, entirely….)

The quote above is one that I find to be a comfort to me as I get closer to the time when death will come to make my acquaintance in this lifetime. As a conscious being, I naturally have to believe that my mind, or soul, if you prefer, will not cease to exist; only a change that we do not understand will happen, one which no one has ever successfully explained with any degree of certainty. There is, of course, no evidence to support the belief that we do not merely stop existing, like the flame of a candle, when we die, that we will somehow “wake up” somewhere else, according to our particular set of preferences in such philosophies.

Nothing tangible can be produced, or has ever been produced, that makes such a belief a conclusion; contrarily, there is also no evidence available that it is not true. We each have a strong feeling that our soul is indestructible, like energy of any type, but no incontrovertible proof is available for either side of the issue.

Thus, we can only hold on to our sense of spiritual connection to the universe, that part of us that knows that, like sunlight, or electricity, or heat, our conscious mind is a manifestation of energy, one that, like all the other kinds of energy we perceive, does not cease to exist, ever. It may change forms, or even types (as light can become electricity, or motion become heat….), but it does not leave the universe at all.

To me, and to certain philosophies, the qualities of water are a good example to use as a way of understanding this principle. Water cannot be destroyed. You can, by altering its temperature, cause it to change form, from ice, to water, to steam…. but it cannot be destroyed at all. Our minds, and thoughts, can be thought of as water, ever flexible, ever changeable, yet never ceasing to exist in any way, and retaining within its being all the qualities that make it, and us, what we are…. another unique part of a beautifully complex and wonderful reality….

To me, that is, indeed, a comforting thought….

“If I am I because you are you, and if you are you because I am I, then I am not I, and you are not you” ~~ Hassidic rabbi
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Again, it seems serendipity is guiding my attention…. In searching this morning for a poem a bit off my usual track, I came across this one, from William Blake…. In light of my recent rants on how America is, well, heading for the toilet, and not to enjoy a soothing episode of relief, but, to get flushed…. Perhaps, my imagery isn’t exactly the most elegant for its intended purpose, but, you get the drift….

Any who, I thought it was interesting to see how someone from another country viewed ours, from the vantage point of the past…. Blake was an interesting man, to say the least…. A poet of little renown in his own time, he is now considered one of the most seminal Romantic poets; in addition, he painted, and one contemporary critic was moved to remark of his work in no small way, when he described Blake as, “far and away the greatest artist Britain has ever produced” (Information from Poemhunter.com).

America, A Prophecy

The shadowy Daughter of Urthona stood before red Orc,
When fourteen suns had faintly journey’d o’er his dark abode:
His food she brought in iron baskets, his drink in cups of iron:
Crown’d with a helmet and dark hair the nameless female stood;
A quiver with its burning stores, a bow like that of night,
When pestilence is shot from heaven: no other arms she need!
Invulnerable though naked, save where clouds roll round her loins
Their awful folds in the dark air: silent she stood as night;
For never from her iron tongue could voice or sound arise,
But dumb till that dread day when Orc assay’d his fierce embrace.
‘Dark Virgin,’ said the hairy youth, ‘thy father stern, abhorr’d,
Rivets my tenfold chains while still on high my spirit soars;
Sometimes an Eagle screaming in the sky, sometimes a Lion
Stalking upon the mountains, and sometimes a Whale, I lash
The raging fathomless abyss; anon a Serpent folding
Around the pillars of Urthona, and round thy dark limbs
On the Canadian wilds I fold; feeble my spirit folds,
For chain’d beneath I rend these caverns: when thou bringest food
I howl my joy, and my red eyes seek to behold thy face–
In vain! these clouds roll to and fro, and hide thee from my sight.’

Silent as despairing love, and strong as jealousy,
The hairy shoulders rend the links; free are the wrists of fire;
Round the terrific loins he seiz’d the panting, struggling womb;
It joy’d: she put aside her clouds and smiled her first-born smile,
As when a black cloud shews its lightnings to the silent deep.

Soon as she saw the terrible boy, then burst the virgin cry:

‘I know thee, I have found thee, and I will not let thee go:
Thou art the image of God who dwells in darkness of Africa,
And thou art fall’n to give me life in regions of dark death.
On my American plains I feel the struggling afflictions
Endur’d by roots that writhe their arms into the nether deep.
I see a Serpent in Canada who courts me to his love,
In Mexico an Eagle, and a Lion in Peru;
I see a Whale in the south-sea, drinking my soul away.
O what limb-rending pains I feel! thy fire and my frost
Mingle in howling pains, in furrows by thy lightnings rent.
This is eternal death, and this the torment long foretold.’

~~ William Blake ~~

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Now you see the nefarious genius of my plan…. I’ve created an entire pearl, using primarily work I accomplished over two years ago…. Pretty slick, eh? Now I have time to prepare myself mentally for the important event I have on my plate for a couple hours from now…. What happens at that time will play a big part in determining the physical AND emotional tenor of a lot of the next few months, (or, alternately, it could have little effect at all, which is okay, as long as one particular issue is resolved to my satisfaction….)…. so, I’m looking forward to the challenge of making things come out the way I intend…. SIGH….. Shaping Reality to suit our needs and purposes can be exhausting…. So, here is my third cheat of the day…. but, I think you’ll agree with me that it couldn’t be any better if it was fresh….

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11/16/11
Ffolkes,

Good morrow to you…. let us begin as we mean to go on….

“Writing is easy. All you do is stare at a blank sheet of paper until drops of blood form on your forehead.” — Gene Fowler

This line is included today merely to give y’all an idea of what I go through every morning to produce this…. whatever it is. It is a pretty good description, actually, because when I’m done, I actually feel battered and bloody….. Actually, bloody well-used-up is what it is. Maybe it’s easier for other writers; I don’t know. But for me, to produce something that my standards will allow me to publish for others to read, is much like having a piece of my soul ripped out, taking a a kidney with it.

The funny thing is, though it hurts a lot, I wouldn’t stop doing it, even if I could. The pain of creation, which. after all. requires destruction first, is a worthy payoff for the sense of accomplishment I get when I see one of my pieces online for all to see. Quite a rush actually….

“Most human beings have an almost infinite capacity for taking things for granted.” — Aldous Huxley

This observation, as far as I can tell, is 100% accurate, and because it is, many of the problems society is facing are easily explained, if not easily resolved. For example, when was the last time you gave a thought to what else besides oxygen is in the air that you take into your lungs on the average of 15-20 times per minute.? When you last got a glass of water from the tap, did you stop to think about what was in the water you use to drink, cook with, and bathe in? As Mr. Huxley pointed out, most folks, yourselves included, seldom think about or appreciate such simple necessities, or what might happen if they were no longer available.

What will we do when the air is so full of carbon dioxide that the amount of oxygen in it is decreased below the point where it will sustain life? Will we all have to wear breathing apparatus in order to brave the outside world? What will happen to all the other animals if there isn’t sufficient air? What will you do when the water you drink is no longer safe to consume? We need water as much as we need air; our chemical make-up is 90% water, and not having enough of it to replace what we lose is a sure path to the grave within a matter of days.

There are other issues connected to this subject; the consistent degradation of our planet’s ecosystem has a great many negative effects, small and unnoticeable at first, but growing larger over time until they are added to the list of processes that will eventually lead to extinction of all of this planet’s life forms.  Part of the problem is that it is a slow, insidious process, this degradation, and the deleterious outcomes are not evident until too late to reverse.

You must remember, the Universe doesn’t care, one way or the other, whether we survive or not; the rules are the rules, and fighting against the natural laws of our space-time continuum is a fool’s bet. Like it or not, we, as a species, are going to need to make some serious changes to the way we do things, if we are to survive at all. And we will need to do it starting yesterday….

“A man’s ethical behavior should be based effectually on sympathy, education, and social ties; no religious basis is necessary.  Man would indeed be in a poor way if he had to be restrained by fear of punishment and hope of reward after death.” — Albert Einstein

I really admire Albert Einstein, and not because he was a great scientist, as well as one of history’s shining examples of men and women who greatly advance human knowledge, purely out of their love of mankind. I also admire that Albert’s wisdom was not restricted to the principles of physics and math; he had a unique way of looking at the world, spiritually, and physically, in a simplistic fashion, and had the ability to share his deep insights into life and the universe, for the benefit of others. He was an eternal optimist, and as the above quote demonstrates, had a firm grip on the concept of living with honor and dignity.

He believed in the inherent goodness of every man, living his life in a way that stands as an example for the rest of us, of how to live well. I cannot wholly agree with what he states above, because I have a much darker view of what human nature is capable of, and less faith in mankind’s willingness to submit to natural law. But what he said does show with clarity where our salvation lies, and in his own inimitable manner, he shares his deeper knowledge with the rest of us in the hope it will inspire others to act honorably….

“To laugh often and love much, to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty, to find the best in others, to give of oneself; to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; to have played and laughed with enthusiasm and sing with exultation; to know even one life has breathed easier: this is to have succeeded.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

From what I gather in my study of 19th century American writers, a lot of the best were what I would call masters of advanced curmudgeonry. Emerson, Walden, Thoreau,  were all libertarians living in compromise with a democracy, and spent much of their time either complaining about society, or hiding from it in their forest retreats. This is not to say that what they wrote was bad or mistaken in premise, necessarily, but if you read their work with this in mind, it becomes apparent that they didn’t much like other folks, or put much trust in their rationality.

But, as the included quote indicates, being a curmudgeon doesn’t necessarily mean they don’t understand humanity, or what it takes to make life complete. This paragraph from Mr. Emerson demonstrates this perfectly. One cannot argue with conviction that all of these attributes listed, and experiences from a long life, are positively rooted, and make perfect sense. Whether or not we actually have all of these characteristics is unimportant; the list remains valid, even if incomplete. And, it provides anyone with a good map and directions that can be useful to us in our pursuit of happiness….

So much for another day…. Hopefully, you have consumed a fair portion of food for thought, and found it palatable enough. If not, feel free to let me know, and I’ll see if I can come up with something more savory…. in the meantime, y’all take care out there….
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So much for the sanctity of the mind, eh? We’ve put the lie to that one rather well today, haven’t we? If nothing else, I’m pretty sure I felt the foundations of Reality tremble in fear for a few moments, and we can’t hope for any better than that….. 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

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

Ffolkes,

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

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

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

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

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

Shall we Pearl?….

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

– Seven Deadly Sins

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

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

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

From March 7, 2013:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Daniel: “We’re damned if we do, we’re damned if we don’t; we need other options….” — from Stargate
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Since I’m cheating already, there is no point in making anyone else feel at all guilty by association, so, here is a poem of my own, from September of 2012, which, apparently, was not a bad year for poetry…

Visible life

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

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

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

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

~~ gigoid ~~

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Which is Why….


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

gigoid

dozer3

Improbably imbued with ponderous value….

Ffolkes,

Vague flutters, as tiny wings not seen, but heard on the very edge of awareness, fall obscurely upon the dark shadows, soullessly inhabiting these empty halls. A terrible, heavy silence grips the night by the throat, quelling any thought of outcry, any hope of warning, as minute by minute, the hour of fate approaches unbidden, unwanted, unknown…. Baleful denizens of darkness cower, shivering in the cold of a terror so great, so powerfully evil, all hope died, screaming, before it was ever born…..

Then, of course, I woke up, and all was well…. or, as well as things can be, all things considered…. At least we’re not in the evil grip of some kind of Steven King-like novel, like the poor sap in the first paragraph, eh? I’d hate to go there every day, even if only in my head…. Having been blessed once more by 10 solid hours of sleep, I feel GREAT! Well, I feel pretty good, anyway; I don’t think I’ll be climbing any mountains anytime soon, but, I may be able to make it past 2 PM without a nap, if I’m lucky, so, that’s a good thing, right? Right….

In the last week, other than two trips out of the house to take care of some business out in  the BBR, we’ve been stuck in the house ever since getting back from the cruise from hell, me with bronchitis, and my lady with a cold she managed to pick up inadvertently upon arriving home…. For the past five days, we have been alternating sitting, taking meds, and sleeping, pretty much, with some minor writing on my part in the early mornings, while my brain is actually functioning at a relatively normal level…. Part of what has kept us in the house, aside from illness, is the weather here in California, which has been reminiscent of Alaska in the early winter…. seriously…

It has been well below freezing point for five nights running, with temps here last night down to 21 degrees F…. For a town right on the water of a bay, on the Pacific Ocean, at around the 37th parallel, that is COLD!…. Especially here in this part of the state, where ‘mild’ is the word we use most often to describe our weather patterns…. This year, 2013, the area has had approximately five to six inches of rain, with only twenty-one days left in the year,  whereas, the annual average is close to 24 inches…. But, there’s no such thing as global warming, so, hey, not to worry, eh?….

Okay, that’s enough… Some fictional musings, some personal patter, a bit of weather, a mini-mini-environmental rant…. It will suffice for our purposes here….  I think we’re good to go for a dive… If things turn out to make that an erroneous decision, well, hey, we’ve been wrong before, haven’t we? Yes, yes, we have….

Shall we Pearl?…..

That ‘s the wise thrush; he sings each song twice over,
Lest you should think he never could recapture
The first fine careless rapture.

– Robert Browning (1812-1890) — Home-Thoughts from Abroad, ii
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“Whenever, therefore, the profession of arms becomes a distinct order in the state….the end of the social compact is defeated… No free government was ever founded, or ever preserved its liberty without uniting the characters of the citizen and soldier in those destined for the defense of the state…Such are a well regulated militia, composed of the freeholders, citizen and husbandman, who take up arms to preserve their property, as individuals, and their rights as freemen.” — Richard Henry Lee

I mentioned a few days ago that I’d found a good quote for the beginning of a rant, and I was right, wasn’t I?….. Specifically, for a politirant, concerning gun control, and the misguided attempts to alter the Second Amendment to the US Constitution, if not wholly, at least by abridging its intent. This, I believe, is a HUGE mistake, even though it was fully expected by those who first made the law, to wit: Jefferson, Franklin, Mason, Paine, Hamilton, etc…. our founding fathers, in short. All of them believed very strongly that this amendment was the very backbone of what made our freedoms possible, and were leery of ANY changes to this law….

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

Those fears were expressed, verbally and in writing, many times, before and after the Constitution’s approval, and all the available evidence shows how little these men trusted the monied, or titled, elite in society… More than once, in correspondence with each other, they discussed their mistrust, of the bankers, the corporations, the aristocrats, the professional politicians, the professional soldiers, and all who support those categories of society. They knew that, as soon as the laws were passed, these special influences would begin using their money, and their influence, to try to abrogate the intent of the laws, limiting them, altering them until they no longer were capable of protecting our rights….

“Freedom isn’t cheap and it never goes on sale.” — Smart Bee

That assault on the Bill of Rights, especially those of the First and Second Amendments, has been continuous since 1786, as can be seen by the Congressional logs of bills that were brought forth at one time or another throughout our history, bills attempting to limit the power of the amendments; some were successful, some were not….. and the assault is not over; it continues to this day, as the special interest groups all clamor to fill the public’s attention with unreasoning fears, by making a huge hullabaloo over EVERY shooting that occurs in this country….

Well, as long as it suits them, of course…. They don’t make a big deal out of one of their police or paramilitary types blowing away some ‘perp’, (…. kind of a demeaning term, don’t you think?…. As well as prejudicial… A ‘perpetrator’ is one who is considered guilty of an act, by connotation, if not denotation….), who is robbing a store because he needs food, or drugs…. Even the shooting of some little kid playing with a toy gun brings no particular outrage from the governors, or even the media, in response to that lack…. No, those types of shootings get little attention past the first report; the only investigations into THOSE incidents are internal, and never find any blame, or file any charges….

No, it is the incidents where some crazy asshole, most likely some private citizen with a long time internal struggle to be normal, gets hold of a gun, goes to some public area, and proceeds to blow away a bunch of other innocents…. These events, relatively isolated in comparison with other types of shootings, of any kind, are the incidents that are brought into the limelight, so that every detail of the agony of the victims is expressed, fanning the public’s outrage, making them afraid for their own safety…. This makes them much more malleable when the talking heads propose their newest limits to the guns that the people can have…. Don’t worry, they’ll get them all, it will just take them more time…

As I’ve stated before, I’m a warrior, raised by a man of honor, and have studied the Art of War, (both the book by Sun Tzu, and the actual Art itself….), for almost my entire life…. and though I don’t, as a rule, use guns (They’re too loud, too complicated to maintain in the field, & hard to use with stealth…. heavy, too….. Knives, and sticks, of many shapes, are quieter, simple to use, & much easier to conceal…. Ropes are pretty useful, too….), I do know how to use them….

If I should ever need one, why, then, I’ll acquire one, from someone who has more than they need, to use as I so require. Then I’ll put it away again, or give it back to the owner, if that individual happened to loan it to me…. If the gun I end up using was pointed at me, well, they won’t be needing it back, anyway….. So far in life, I’ve been smart enough to avoid the necessity of dealing with that, and have had no need for one, so, I’m content with that, for the time being….

But, no matter what the talking heads may do, or say, or how they may change the laws, our founding fathers already GAVE me the rights I have, and I won’t be giving them up, no matter how many legal sounding words they may send through their lips…. It will all be just noise, as far as I am concerned…. There is no rationalization that is, to my mind, conceivable, that could persuade me to give up those rights, because I’ve already heard them all…. After all, in addition to my book/day from 1961 onward, I HAVE been watching TV since the early 1950′s, (I remember the Republican convention in 1954 that nominated Eisenhower, watching it on a small B&W console TV…. “I LIKE IKE!”….), so, I’ve seen or heard just about every political lie there is to perceive…. They just recycle the same old BS every time, anyway….

I’m tired of ranting about this, because, to me, it’s already a settled issue in my mind…. so, let’s see if I can find some pearls to lighten up the tone, and still deliver a few shots to the midsection of the pundits and preachers out there, who deserve as many shots as we can give them….

“War is a matter of vital importance to the State; the province of life or death; the road to survival or ruin. It is mandatory that it be thoroughly studied.” — Sun Tzu

(Which is why I sincerely urge each and every one of you to PAY ATTENTION!….)

“The devil can quote Shakespeare for his own purpose.” — George Bernard Shaw

(And, too often, does so, right on TV, wearing a dark blue suit with a power red tie and a flag pin….)

“The state is the great fictitious entity by which everyone expects to live at the expense of everyone else.” — Frederic Bastiat

“To use power is to make yourself infinitely vulnerable to greater powers.” — Bene Gesserit

“A promise must never be broken.” — Alexander Hamilton

(Wait! How did THAT get in here?…. Oh, okay, it’s alright, he’s not a pundit, just a founding father…. If a bit of a prude in some ways…. Smart, but a bit anal, y’know?….)

“The Bill of Rights goes too far–it should have stopped at “Congress shall make no law” — Smart Bee

“The man who finds a truth lights a torch.” — Robert G. Ingersoll, _The Truth_

“In the midst of this sublime and terrible storm [at Sidmouth], Dame Partington, who lived upon the beach, was seen at the door of her house with mop and pattens, trundling her mop, squeezing out the sea-water, and vigorously pushing away the Atlantic Ocean. The Atlantic was roused; Mrs. Partington’s spirit was up. But I need not tell you that the contest was unequal; the Atlantic Ocean beat Mrs. Partington.” — Sydney Smith (1769-1845) — Speech at Taunton, 1813
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I like this, not merely because it is beautiful in its execution, but for what it says, as well…. Exquisitely romantic, and powerfully emotional, it is indeed what I consider the BEST kind of poetry…. to wit: it affects the reader, engaging and enlightening at once…. Enjoy!

Sonnet 14 – If thou must love me, let it be for nought

XIV

If thou must love me, let it be for nought
Except for love’s sake only. Do not say
‘I love her for her smile — her look — her way
Of speaking gently, — for a trick of thought
That falls in well with mine, and certes brought
A sense of pleasant ease on such a day’—
For these things in themselves, Beloved, may
Be changed, or change for thee,— and love, so wrought,
May be unwrought so. Neither love me for
Thine own dear pity’s wiping my cheeks dry,—
A creature might forget to weep, who bore
Thy comfort long, and lose thy love thereby!
But love me for love’s sake, that evermore
Thou mayst love on, through love’s eternity.

~~ Elizabeth Barrett Browning ~~

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“One of the most difficult of the philosopher’s tasks is to find out where the shoe pinches.” — Ludwig Wittgenstein

But, other times, the fools make it easy to show just where the pinch is biting…. such as when this fool opens his mouth…. You MUST read this, please… I know it is a hard one to believe, but, it was reported with a straight face by the news outlet, just as if it were real news, so we owe it the respect of doing the same, no matter how egregiously insane it may be…..

http://blog.sfgate.com/nov05election/2013/12/07/santorum-mandelas-fight-for-freedom-like-the-fight-against-obamacare/

Can you believe the sheer, blind selfishness of this man? No matter what his issues, he was asked to comment on the life of someone who died, and regardless of his own position, he could not put aside his own personal foibles long enough to make a statement of compassion for the family, or the loss to the world…. No, he attempted to equate the works of one of the last century’s most well-loved, and universally respected figures, trying to turn the moment to his own political advantage, with possibly the weakest, most illogical, most ill-informed argument I have heard outside a second-grade classroom, when the teacher asked the little boy why he ate his neighbor’s cookie….

“People become educated, as against trained, insofar as they achieve a grasp of certain critical principles, and the passion to choose, organize and shape their own ideas by means of them. Education is not a mere piling up of more and more bits and pieces of information. It is a process of deciding for ourselves what we believe. It implies a self-motivated action upon our own mental nature and a process in which we learn to open our mind, to correct and refine it, to enable it rationally to learn; thus to empower it to analyze and digest its own knowledge, to gain command over its own faculties, to achieve flexibility, fair-mindedness, and critical exactness. More and more students should have assignments that challenge their minds to think for themselves.

This requires, of course, that they are encouraged to question what is presented to them for belief, not only in the various subject areas, but on TV programs and movies, in news broadcasts, in the talk of their peers and others, in political speeches and personal discussions, in everyday decisions and ways of living. And they should do this not to discover that everything is relative and arbitrary or a matter of opinion, but that all beliefs and points of view are subject to rational analysis and assessment. Ideally the process will come to pervade the school climate and be reflected in the deepest structures of school life. By this means, schools can perhaps become, as they should be, leading institutions in society, paradigms of rationality, helping an irrational society to become what itself has said is its own highest goal: a free society of free and autonomous persons.” — Richard Paul

Rick Santorum is a perfect example of the kind of first type of education described in this quote, with a lot of well-memorized factoids running around in his head, which he is able to regurgitate in various formats on demand, all without ever having to apply a single moment’s actual thought, or use them to reason with for any purpose…. When one reasons, one might come up with a conclusion, which is a risk for a pundit….. He is a well-programmed autobot for the Republican right, which, for me, is a continual delight, as he also has an almost Romney-esque ability to keep his foot planted firmly between his teeth for long periods of time, and still talk around it…. This was a perfect example of that skill, along with a display of callous ignorance and lack of compassion that is merely astounding, rather than particularly surprising.

In a way, though, he is also a frightening phenomenon, for there are actually people in this country who take what he says as gospel, who dote on his unpopular opinions, mostly because they tend to fall into misogynistic, racist, bigoted, fundamentalist Christian guidelines,…. a group of characteristics, you will note, that purportedly have NOTHING to do with government, other than as things to fight against inclusion in that process…. Yet, there he is, the darling of the fascistic fundies, just like that hive of bees in my head that, in spite of telling them of all the flowers that are in other locations, remains ensconced in the eaves under the roof of my mind…. and, well, there they are, so what do I do with them?….

“Annoy a Fundamentalist: Tell him the truth!” — Smart Bee

Hmm, that’s good advice…. To get back to Rick’s case, at least there are times like this one, when he provides me with at least a few moments of hilarity, at the breadth and depth of his stupidity, until, saddened by the same sheer ignorance in one in a position to do so much harm, I become depressed again, when I think of how many idiots are out there taking him seriously….. SIGH….. That thought is SO depressing, I’m going to quit this rant, and go find something fun to do, just so I don’t have to think about him any more….. Wish me luck, and I’ll wish it back at ya…. And remember, ffolkes, I may not be right, but I make up for it by being sure…..

“For the love of God, folks, don’t do this at home.” — David Letterman, CBS Late Show, demonstrating the Donut-o-pult, 1995
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I’m not entirely certain just how it happened, but, I think I’ve done it…. Let’s go see…. Well…. I’m still not sure, but, now, at least, I know it did happen, so…. I guess I’m outta here for today…. 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

Skeptical images go in the bluest bin…. (Spoiler: 94% fresh material…)

Ffolkes,

I’m often amazed at how much the world can change in one day; never has that been more clearly defined for me than in the past 24 hours, when I took the time to compare that day to the 24 hours that preceded…. The difference, in how I feel, in how I view the world, in the world itself, all are in direct contrast to each other, and serve to send my mind into the realms of thought and introspection…. which is a good thing, mostly, if a bit strange for the average bear…. I’ve never been a particularly average bear, though, so, no worries, eh?….

My condition, both physical and mental, over the last few days was complicated by a certain policy decision I’d made, which, in the light of subsequent events, became, quite obviously, the wrong policy to adopt at this particular time, if ever. Since returning the policy to its former state, all seems to be well, in many respects that were NOT doing well….

This tells me that reinstating the policy was the correct decision, so, once again, that’s a good thing, even if all this is so obscure that even I am not sure what the hell I’m talking about…. But, that’s okay, it’s not really important for any other purpose than my own inner serenity, which is always a bit wobbly, so, we’ll just keep it that way, and let things settle into their most propitious alignments without further interference from me….

Now, wasn’t THAT fun! I could possibly have made that even more obdurately obscure, but, what’s the point in that? I can barely follow it myself, so even the NSA will have trouble figuring out what I’m talking about, even with ALL my meta-data to work with…. They’re missing the key encryption factor, which is located deep within the confines of my brain, in places of which even I am not fully cognizant; I keep it there on purpose, so I can’t tell them if I ever get caught….

Okay, so I’m no James Bond…. I can pretend, can’t I?….. Besides, I’m no real threat, (yet…), to them, other than by what I may write, and that has, thus far, been fairly mild, in terms of actual, practical revolutionary content…. I have yet to actually BUY a gun, (yet…), and haven’t started meeting up with like-minded radicals from other places around the country, (yet…). Nor have I started a newsletter, or published a paper, or any of the other organizational activities one might suspect if I chose to pursue such a course…. (yet…..)

I’ve thought about all of them, and may, someday relatively soon, go about following up on one or more of those impulses; it’s about damn time for some changes in this sad old world, that’s for sure….

But, not yet…. not quite yet….. I’m not convinced at this point as to how many others out there would consider joining with me in such activity, though I suspect there are many more than the BRC would believe…. Plus, when the time actually comes for me to do something practical, do they actually think that I’m stupid enough to tell them about it first? I guess they are, so, we’ll just let them go on believing that, and get on with what we’re doing…. which, at this point should probably involve some diving for pearls…. otherwise, we many never get out of here, and I know I’m low on snack items…. so…..

Shall we Pearl?…..

“Between the vision and the act lies the shadow.” — T. S. Eliot (1888-1965)
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‘Kay…. I’m submitting to the will of Fate, such as it presents itself, as we all must when it does…. Oh, we all like to come up with high sounding rationalizations why our fate is in our own hands, or, we like to pretend it is subject to adjustment, if we hold to a certain set of beliefs, that protect us from its vagaries, but, when it all comes down to the final analysis, we will ALWAYS do what we do, and the WHY has NO BEARING on what will occur…. 

What will be, will be…. This is something that most people have a hard time coming to accept, myself included….. I’ve discovered, over the years, it is often best to go with the odds, so…. in order to honor the concept of “always cut the cards”, I’d like to talk a bit about the process of getting old…..

“Yep, getting old just plain sux.” — lobotero ( http://lobotero.com/ )

This quote was left as a comment for me on a recent post, wherein I was once again discussing my health, and mentioned that feeling poorly was “getting old”…. My new friend, lobotero, agreed with the sentiment, as he, I know, lives with his own difficult health issues…. But, when he said that, I was struck by the simple fact that, although it is true, as true as the sun coming up each day, it only describes half of the universe in which we live, the living half,  and it’s only because we are suffering that the other half, the dying, is so hard to acknowledge…..

“I’d rather die happy than not die at all….” — Bob Weir

Yeah, I’m hating big parts of this getting old shit, most of which is due to the fact that none of it was in the damn manual…. Of course, there was no manual, but, you know what I mean…. When we’re growing up, do the adults tell us, “don’t worry, you’ll be in pain soon, too, dear….”?… No, of course not… It’s all, “Oh, go play, dear, have fun. Use your mind, and your body, just be safe!”, or some such happy shit, never giving a clue, until later in life, that we all should have begun practicing some years ago at those things that will help us later in life…. SIGH… If I didn’t know better, I’d think it was a conspiracy…..

But, I know better than to attribute to malevolence anything that is more likely the result of asininity, or just plain stupidity….. We’re all not the brightest creatures on the platter, you know…. Why else would we still be stuck hanging around some backwater planet like this? There HAS to be somewhere more civilized to go, if only to find an adequate cup of ambrosia….. Logic says there MUST be…. As I am, sadly, no smarter than the rest of the monkeys stuck here, I suppose that means I have to try again to get along with the inhabitants, at least for long enough to get through another incarnation….

I must be feeling a little bit better, as this is the most coherent bit of cogitation I’ve managed for a week or more, as well as the most light-hearted…. I miss my sense of humor when it’s hiding behind the outrage, or the pain, or whatever it finds to stay out of the limelight…. But, one mustn’t spook the muses, now, so, shhh, we won’t talk of it any more just now…. Where was I?

Oh, yes, I was getting old, and, mostly liking it…. I guess that is the thrust of what I’m trying to say here….. I’ve had a HELL of a good time in my life, having managed to do just about all I wanted to do at one time or another, along with, of course, quite a few things I didn’t want to do so much…. But, all of them have taught me something, so, I figure I’m ahead of the game in that respect…. Plus, I just remembered why I MUST be feeling better, and why it’s so…..

When one is using one’s MIND (caps deliberate, to denote I’m really serious here….), when it is fully engaged in doing the work at which it excels, it actually has healing, and recuperative powers, in respect to the rest of the body…. This idea is a commonly held belief in many spiritual circles, and there is medical evidence to support it, as well, so I’m not just talking through my ass (though that has been known to occur…. but, not now….)… Any who, when one is thinking hard, and concentrating, the body has actually been measured, with results that indicate it does not merely STOP AGING, but, in point of fact, will repair some of the damage time wreaks, making us younger…..

For some time now, perhaps an hour or so, I’ve been thinking about what my friend said, above, and the echoes of the thoughts are still reverberating around in my head, stimulating other ideas, bouncing around. colliding with other ideas like a nuclear reaction in full swing, and, in essence, creating conditions in my body that are helping me to get better….. Until, of course, the actual illness itself steps in, to let me know it’s not quite gone… S’cuse me…. break time…. I hope to be right back….

So much for the wishes of a man in the face of fate, or Fate, or even destiny…. To continue…. in that hour that I’ve spent in thinking about how it sux to get old, I have felt better than I have for over a week, and certainly the best I’ve felt since becoming ill, several weeks ago, when I caught a cold for the first time in decades…. But, a full hour of the mind at work, and much of the damage has been, if not eliminated fully, mitigated to a significant degree; you can’t complain about a deal like that, now, can you?…..

So, yes, getting old sux, big time, a lot of the time…. Fortunately, that’s not the end of the story for us humans….. Myself, I have always enjoyed the process of learning, which just so happens to occur at a regular rate as we grow older (as long as we are paying attention….), and wouldn’t trade a single grey hair for those darker tendrils that adorned my head as a youth….. They still grow, grey as they are, a fact that, to me, indicates how things actually are, if we know how to perceive them….

As I’ve grown older, I’ve learned something new with each passing hour; the things I’ve learned make my life much fuller, filled with the feelings and experiences that I enjoy, such as the anticipation and excitement of traveling, or the profound joy of meeting new people, and I don’t believe I’d care to go back to being young, because the trade-off wouldn’t be a fair bargain, for me, or for the world….

I’ll just take things the way they are, and do the best I can to learn to enjoy even the difficult times, as being another kind of lesson….. This one taught me to find my way back to the proper attitudes for my mental and physical well-being, so, I’m content, for the nonce, even though I’m older than I was when I began…..

“You’ve little to fear, brave knight…unless the dragon stops purring.” — Smart Bee
_____________________________

At times, all I want is a simple poem, that speaks directly to the truth of life…. Oh, look, here’s one now!…..

A Bottle And Friend

There’s nane that’s blest of human kind,
But the cheerful and the gay, man,
Fal, la, la, &c.

Here’s a bottle and an honest friend!
What wad ye wish for mair, man?
Wha kens, before his life may end,
What his share may be o’ care, man?

Then catch the moments as they fly,
And use them as ye ought, man:
Believe me, happiness is shy,
And comes not aye when sought, man.

~~ Robert Burns ~~

_____________________________

As I was searching the other day, looking for pearls for an old-school pearl I was putting together, a group of another type kept popping up in SB, obviously trying to get me to include them in a post…. I put them aside for the moment, but now will complete the group, and include them here, so they will stop whimpering at me…. Actually, this is looking like it will be a pretty good one….

“People are divided into two groups – the righteous and the unrighteous – and the righteous do the dividing.” — Lord Cohen

EVANGELIST, n.  A bearer of good tidings, particularly (in a religious sense) such as assure us of our own salvation and the damnation of our neighbors. — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

“At the beginning there was the Word – at the end just the Cliche.” — Stanislaw J. Lec

“Any system of religion which has anything in it which offends the mind of a child cannot be a true system.” — Thomas Paine

“Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocrities. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence.” — Albert Einstein

“All men are born naked.” — Carlos Eduardo Novaes

“If attacked by a lion thrust your arm down his throat. This takes some practice.” — Cyril Connolly

For those who have been reading this blog for a while, you may understand why I recognize this to be one of the finest pearls I’ve ever come up with; for those unfamiliar with how my mind works, (a group that often includes myself….), this will seem like something almost familiar, but, elusive and difficult to pin down….. For what it is worth, a key decryption tool for deciphering the meaning here would be the word, “dogma”; even more useful, the word, “poltroon”…. Of course, if you use the latter, you will need to remember to bring some Windex, or perhaps, a bit of WD-40, to the aftermath party…..
_____________________________

Today is one of those special days, brimming with the possibility of epiphany, tempered by the patina of age, yet shining with the luster that comes from elegance…. Oh wait, that’s just some oatmeal on my glasses….Whoops! Oh well, I had hopes there, for a moment…. Let’s see if it lives up to any of its promises….

Well, actually, it does…. I like it, and though I’m not particularly hard to please, still, it’s pretty okay…. I know, I’m damning it with faint praise, but, it can’t be helped… If I gush, I seem too egotistical, and, it’s not THAT good…. Whatever it is, I hope y’all enjoy today’s effort, because I enjoyed writing it…. 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