Zero is a hard row to hoe……

Having decided to forgo the usual nonsense, there will be no introductory section this morning. Yesterday’s near-disastrous hijacking of my keyboard has put me on edge, security-wise, and I think it is best if I just leave this section out, and go right into today’s dive….. oh. Wait. Hmm…… this is already an intro, isn’t it? Well, so much for that idea….

Well, since I can’t say, “I love it when a plan comes together!”, I guess I’ll just have to say, “WTF?”Β  (See? I AM capable of tact….. I could have spelled it out, couldn’t I?…. all part of the service…..) The latter is more honest, at base, and expresses my normal state of mind in the morning much more accurately. I’m finding that displaying such personal foibles is preferable to humanity’s normal policy of insisting all is well, everything is fine, nothing to see here, move along….. if nothing else, it garners more sympathy votes, which, though demeaning to accept, nonetheless help to stuff the ballot box. Cheating is, after all, the American Way…… if you doubt that, you really need to pay more attention…..

I’m not sure exactly what all that has to do with pearl diving; it sounded more as if I were just clearing my throat, mentally speaking, and really doesn’t say much of anything at all. Well, the last line is pretty pointed, but I didn’t jab very hard with it, so it doesn’t really count. At this point, once again, it would most likely be our best course of action to run to the end of the dock, and just dive in…. it would probably put the best end to a bad start, and may even save lives….. on that note, we are outta here….. let’s Pearl, like we did last summer…..

Ralph Barbieri fired as radio announcer at station KNBR in San Francisco, 4/10/2012…. link to article:

I first heard Mr. Barbieri’s voice around 1984, when he first joined KNBR and the SF Bay Area sports scene. I have to say, right off the bat, his voice grates on my ear like fingernails across a chalkboard; there is a reason he has always been known as “Razor Voice Ralph”. It has always stood as an obstacle for me to listen to him for very long, as my nerve endings just start to vibrate along with his voice after a few minutes.

However, that being said, I also must add that I have always admired his work, in spite of his delivery. From the start of his career, he asked the tough questions, and never settled for a fluff answer from anyone, big star or not. If he believed in something, he was a passionate crusader for that cause, as indicated by his campaign to keep the Giants in SF when the team was considering a move to Florida. His involvement was a big part of the success of that campaign, during which he was tireless, making his love of sports, and particularly the Giants, plain for all to see. He always prepared and researched thoroughly, and was expert in almost any sport’s details. Though his voice and rough-hewn personality were difficult to ignore, he nonetheless remains a stalwart and professional example of a competent, and popular, sports reporter, for that is what he really is.

Ralph was fired in a manner with which I can empathize very closely. It took my employer about 15 minutes to accomplish what his company did with him in 7, but the net results were identical, right down to the blocked voice mail. I did manage to rate an escort off-grounds by hospital police rather than management, so I guess that is one small difference. Otherwise, me and Ralph, we’re twins on this….. so, I know somewhat of what he feels right now. Given that knowledge I must commend his reasoned initial public response; I’m afraid that, given his media exposure quotient, I would have been a lot more forceful in my response to such chicanery, and would no doubt have caused my lawyer no end of wincing and wringing of hands at my inflammatory public ranting.

But, the saddest part of the whole affair that I found was in the comments section after the article on SFGATE, wherein readers have the opportunity to sound off on the news articles on the site. One has to register to comment, but it’s free, so they have a pretty huge online community that comments on EVERYTHING.Β  I spent a little time after my initial comment, which kind of paralleled what I wrote just above, reading over some of the other comments.

I was shocked, to say the least, by the number of responses that were not merely sympathetic to the company that did the firing, but actually expressed outright glee at what had been perpetrated on Ralph by a company where he proved his value over 28 years. In only three pages I viewed to to gather some numbers, the responses that were viciously petty toward Ralph, or merely resigned at the company’s behavior, were approximately 65-75% of the total number I saw….. it was absolutely astounding how many calloused, uncaring ignoramuses had spoken up to display their complete lack of humanity.

“Nadie tiene mas imaginacion que la realidad.” — Miguel de Unamuno, “El Espejo de la Muerte”, 1941

It isn’t often I’m prompted, or stimulated, to write several hundred words on a sports story. I’m a fan, yes, but it isn’t a big time-consumer in my life, just an occasional trip into vicarious thrills and fond memories of bygone days. But the sheer number of petty, self-absorbed, even downright vicious responses was a surprise to me. Yes, me, the complete cynic when it comes to human stupidity and bigotry. But even I had no idea that the state of public morality had fallen into so deep a pit as is indicated in the responses to this issue, one of no particular cosmic or even national significance.

I am now going to excuse myself, and go finish drawing up my plans for what I’m going to do when civilization comes to a crashing halt…. I have a sinking feeling I don’t have as much time to get ready as I had previously believed…. so, I’d best get to it…. I suggest you think seriously about following my lead on this. We may not have a lot of time left….. if this is any indication, very little at all…..

“I like Wagner’s music better than any other music. It is so loud that one can talk the whole time without people hearing what one says. That is a great advantage.” — Oscar Wilde

It’s been quite a while since these pages were blessed by a visit from Oscar; he is, and shall ever be, one of my favorite historical and literary figures, not only for the wit and charm of the verse in which he spoke, and wrote, but for the very picture of Life he painted with his every act. It was a picture of defiant genius, of incredible beauty and charm, a picture of towering intellect faced by the mundane restrictions of a repressed society. He was a man of the Twenty-first century as far as his ideas and his outlook, trapped and miserable in the Nineteenth century, completely misunderstood by all but those who flocked around him, ever anxious for any part of his charm and attention.

On this subject, i.e., opera, I have to side with Oscar. I love music, and just about all types. There are few genres that I don’t particularly care for, but the one I care for the least is opera. Strange actually, because I love classical music very much, and find the human voice to be perhaps the most compelling instrument mankind has ever produced. But, most of what I’ve heard in the operatic genre produces in me the same sort of reaction described here by Mssr. Wilde.

I have listened to a lot of it; I try to be fair before forming an opinion. But the majority of what I’ve heard was obscure, complicated beyond necessity, and in general, enough to induce sleep in a bipolar roadrunner in his manic phase, or, alternately, more than enough to keep one awake when we desperately want to be asleep…..

Oh, even opera has its high points. The aria that played in the movie “The Shawshank Redemption”, when the hero took over the warden’s office, and played it over the loudspeakers, is a stunning piece of music; that voice would raise the dead with such power and beauty. A couple of others come to mind as well, like one of the arias sung by the female lead in Aida.

Mostly, though, it all sounds like what my old pal Noah would sometimes sing when he particularly liked what Tom and I were playing on our guitars (Noah was my dog, for those who haven’t stopped in before; he was very social, and loved to join in whatever was going on….). Enthusiastic, but not particularly gripping, to be nice about it. Sorry, but that’s my opinion, for what it’s worth. As far as I’m concerned, we could lose every opera recording ever made, and I wouldn’t be troubled over it at all, at all…..

“You’ve got the brain of a four-year-old boy, and I bet he was glad to get rid of it.” — Groucho Marx

Perfect! I have found the exactly right comment to make to my list…. you know, the list. The one we all have….. the one where we put the names of those folks in the public eye who continuously make comments that curl your hair, and cause you to run and make sure your ammo is dry. The folks who, every time they open their mouth to spew, make us wish for a return to the good old days of the Inquisition. The ones who speak out every day and prove the old adage about never opening one’s mouth to provide proof of being a fool.

So, the next time I am confronted with one of these pimples on the face of society, I will have the perfect opening line….. In the spirit of indulgence of whimsy, I will now display the first 6 names on my list of folks the world would do better to fit with a permanent mouth plug….

Ann Coulter (to my mind, no amount of verbal abuse would ever be enough for this one; it would take a lot to balance all the vitriol she has spewed on some quite nice folks…..)
Rush Limbaugh (rapidly losing his grip on reality, which was never very strong….)
Willard ‘Mitt’ Romney (the new spokesperson for Flip-Flops…..)
Pat Robertson (a familiar voice on these pages…)
Michelle Bachman (Minnesota Mickey’s been less prominently featured of late, but continues to amaze with her chutzpah….)
Sara Palin (One word….. weasel…..)

There…. I feel better now, though it was a struggle to confine the list to six names; there are a lot of folks who make a strong case for their inclusion. For now though, I’ll just bask in the glow of thinking how much fun it would be to give one them Groucho’s razor sharp barb…..

“I am treated as evil by those who feel persecuted because they are not allowed to force me to believe as they do.” — Smart Bee

“Beware the man of one book.” — St. Thomas Aquinas

Possibly one of the most ironic statements ever made, yet the irony of it is never a subject of discussion. I can understand why those of a dogmatic nature would be leery of examining such an already, in their eyes, controversial sentiment, as it puts the lie to their entire system of belief. But one would think that those not as severely hampered in their thinking might have noted the irony, and wondered about it enough to say so aloud. But, I can’t think of a single instance of this; though I cannot claim perfect knowledge of religious philosophical works, I have read pretty widely, and have never come across anything that hinted at such a novel idea.

Where is the irony, you ask? Well, to me, it’s pretty clear…. here is a statement that warns against those who would place all of their faith and trust into what is included in only one source. But, the statement is made BY a man who was a high-ranking member of the church of his time (well, they did canonize him…). And the church of which he was such a valued member is the same one that puts the Bible on a pedestal as the only book Mankind needs, or should want, to provide the answers to all of their questions.

In short, St. Thomas was blaspheming the choir, rather than preaching to it. Sometimes I’m surprised that the Pope of the time of St. Thomas didn’t de-canonize the lad for his arrogance. Kind of gives one a clue as to what God wants, doesn’t it? If that is your thing…. Me, I’m going to go read a book….

“All art is autobiographical. The pearl is the oyster’s autobiography.” — Federico Fellini

Whew! I guess that settles the question in everyone’s mind as to whether or not this process of creating the Pearls of Virtual Wisdom, that we engage in every day here at gigoid’s blog, can be called Art. Or even art. Sr. Fellini can, I think, be considered as enough of an artist to warrant an opinion, and according to him, this is art, if not Art. So, I guess that makes me an autobiographer, in a weird sort of way…. hmm. Well, it’s not what I had thought I’d be, but I guess it will do….. I have to say, it is nice to know that my efforts here are, if nothing else, not a complete affront to the sensibilities of the Muses…. I can always offer them pearls……

GASP! I have reached the ostensible final segment of today’s offering, and just noticed there is no poetry! Can’t have that…..

All I know of Love
is that Love is all there is.
–Emily Dickinson

There… I feel better now. I’d have hated to start the day with a gaffe like that. But, it worked out well, as Emily is a fitting close to any day’s work. It’s Friday the 13th out there, and it’s always a good day for us Scorpios, so I’m going to go do something unusual today… I’m going out of town for a while to visit a friend.

I’ve been stuck here in my house for about oh, five months or so, and I’m looking forward to surrounding myself with some different colored walls for a time….. plus, my friend and I will no doubt take some time to play some music, so it will be a day of sheer pleasure for me…. music, change of scene, and clean laundry, all in one shot. A good day in the neighborhood, to be sure…..Β  Y’all take care out there…..

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




24 thoughts on “Zero is a hard row to hoe……

  1. Boy, am I with you on the list of people who you wish had a plug in their mouth. These “christians” are so full of vitriol and crap, they make me want to barf. I’ll bet it was hard to stop with your short list. If I could put one more name on it, I’d have to put Rick Santorum. But, like you, one name brings up another one..namely Glen Beck. I could go on and on.

    • Aye, now you see why I had to stop where I did…. each one reminds me of another, and another, ad infinitum…there’s just so many of them! We need to start using Raid, or something on this infestation…

  2. That sneaky introduction/secret govnment mole is getting pretty wiley! And I agree with your list as well. I guess the one thing they all have in common is they’ve all lost their perspectives or never really had one to begin with (Sarah and Pat R.). Sigh . . .

    Why did Ralph Barbieri get fired? Maybe you said and I missed it.

    • Sorry it took so long to reply; been out doing laundry…. no one has said why he was fired. A few weeks ago he informed them that he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease; they had publicly stated that it would not matter to them. Then, shortly after, he was called in as described in the article, and fired in 7 minutes flat…no reason given that I’ve seen printed. Pretty classy, eh?….

      • How strange. Now I’m really curious. I wonder what was behind it? Poor guy. Why would they all of a sudden decide to kick him when he was down like that? Horrible! What’s wrong with people . , .

        • The problems lies in the fact that corporations are allowed to act as a “Person”, legally. This removes the necessity for the managers of that corp. to do so. They just do whatever they want, and use the law that covers their acts, no matter how unjust. As long as corporations are given those legal rights, stuff like this will happen….

          • Given the report he gave of the firing, during which they handed him about a hundred pages of legal documents, probably all intended to protect them from that very thing, I would say they are hoping he won’t try….fortunately it doesn’t keep him from pointing out the hypocrisy of that very thing…. I hope…

          • Aye, indeed… well, if nothing else, it gives me the periodic material for pearling… too bad someone has to pay a price for that…..

  3. Just watched Mitt strut his latest stuff for the NRA. All content free. Just a free market fetishist showing some leg to a bunch of old ass ‘Constitution-In-Exlle” revanchist. The 12 General Election will cost us all about 12 to 15 IQ points.

    More good from you


      • I’m glad you both enjoyed today’s Pearl…

        I agree the election will be a struggle to get through without biting someone, or something. I think I’m going to stock up on enough stuff to just hole up and shut it off for a few weeks in October and November, coming out only long enough to vote, and then crawl back under cover, locked, loaded, and loaded…(no errors there, all as intended…)

        Aye, the pearl and the oyster have a unique relationship, don’t they? It has always fascinated me….And Fellini, unique himself, said it perfectly…. thus justifying my entire purpose here…. πŸ™‚ Affirmation is good, yes?….

        • You know until right now, I had not thought about the relationship between the pearl and the oyster. It’s relationship to me in that context. All about ME, right ;). What I wonderful line of thought to wander around in for a while!

          Affirmation, hmmm? Good yes, but I have to say that I must be willing to forge ahead if none comes. Else my motive become simply that. Which tends to empty one out real fast. No?

    • πŸ™‚ And thanks for the link… I’ll check it out in a little while…as soon as I plow through 80 or 90 emails…. πŸ™‚ I will, I love to see her trashed; she is the female equivalent of those men I call a WOS….. stands for waste of sperm…. I’m sure you’ve met a few, like all of us… I guess that’s why we all have a list of our own….

      • Oddly enough, I’ve managed to avoid much exposure to her. She would be a Waste Of Ova? Mostly it irritates me that they suck up oxygen that could be mine.
        Let me know what you think of the link. I just re-read it and the names, dear gods, the names…

        • WOO.. I like it… it is hereby declared as legally coined, and shall henceforth be used with every mention of her name…. πŸ™‚ I’m going to have to get there tomorrow… I’m fading fast… went out today for a marathon laundry gig, and I am ready to slide between some CLEAN SHEETS! Sorry, laundry’s been overdue a while… take care out there….

  4. That you encourage others to play nicely is interesting. I find some of your posts to be, well, let’s just say, less than nice, about the people you do not deem as being worthy of niceness. πŸ˜‰ Nice, like kindness, are both ideas that I contemplate quite often. And I confess that I don’t trust people who are to damned nice and or kind. Always wonder what they’re lookin for?

    • Good point, and part of why I’m not always too nice….

      While I admit to the apparent hypocrisy of me playing nice, I will point out that even in my most vitriolic statements against my chosen targets, (with the exception of human traffickers, who will never receive from me any such consideration…) I try not to call too many vulgar names, preferring to use other words that, while cleaner, are no less forceful. Plus, I always encourage return comments, as I’m always willing to consider opinions and evidence that challenges mine.

      That is playing nice, to me…. not everyone deserves nice, but I give the benefit of doubt until presented with evidence they are not doing the same. Once folks put their crap out there for us all to see on the public stage, they become fair game… I just try to hunt my game with honor and dignity…. on my part. I don’t expect it from most of them, because mostly they’ve already proven they have neither…. πŸ™‚

      Always good to discuss stuff with you… not everyone thinks, at all, and everyone should do so more often…. we’d all be better off….

  5. β€œBeware the man of one book.” β€” St. Thomas Aquinas

    Makes one think. God explained in one book > and let us not forget the pocket edition. God in our back pocket.

    By the same token – check out the tomes of books on the popes, priests, et al.

  6. Reblogged this on gigoid and commented:


    Having gone walkabout a lot yesterday, there’s no fresh Pearl ready for today; I’d say it’s par for our recent course, but, that would probably be too metaphoric for this early in the day. Allegory sits better on a full stomach, or, at the very least, after coffee. I did find this Pearl, a fine example of the ancient style used then, with some pretty decent examinations of reality to peruse. It got some good traffic, and generated some good comments, which makes it a good read (well, for me, anyway….) I plan to visit some blogs today, to let my favorite ffolkes know I’m not dead yet, so, a Pearl for the morning is, as of yet, not guaranteed. But, I WILL return, soon enough… In the meantime, enjoy today’s walk through the past, be well & happy, and, for goodness’ sake, stay strange….

    gigoid, the dubious


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