The stupidity factor was obviously miscalculated….

Ffolkes,
For most of my life, my favorite activity, above all things, has been to watch people, and try to understand them. I’ve never really known why it pleases me so to just sit, watching people walk by, pondering the ins and outs of the lives and motivations of the people I see pass before me, but, I know that I can no more stop wondering than I could stop thinking, or breathing…. It’s just too fascinating a pastime to resist, for me….

Though I am well experienced at that pastime, I can’t say that I have reached any particularly earth-shattering conclusions about human nature, though I think I’ve seen enough to not be too shocked by anything it can show me in that arena….. I learned long ago never to underestimate the power of human stupidity….

I also learned to never undervalue the potential for human courage, and to appreciate that piece of human nature, I don’t know it’s name, that makes a human rush into a fire to save a child, or step in front of a bullet to save a comrade, or to stand up for the weak against the wicked and evil. even though it may cost their very life….

That part of all of us, that is brought out in such situations in reality, is worth looking for, and encouraging to manifest in other parts of life, for it is a very powerful and inventive quality, of intuitive right action, based on a morality that is unspoken, but no less immediate, and no less compelling, for all that….

There are times when I make myself laugh….. and this is one of them. The above paragraphs, while all true as the day, are about as pompous as I can get, don’t you think? Oh, it’s interesting enough, I suppose, and all correctly punctuated (if one doesn’t count the three dot journalism habit I’ve developed over the years since Herb Caen made it his iconic style), but it’s just too high-falutin’ to be real….

Nobody talks like that, do they? Nope, unless, of course, they are asking ME to explain some sort of astronomy question, which can get me going, and can easily, by its nature, fall into that sort of pattern…. No, it’s written in what I like to call my Imperial style of writing, which, while true in the realest sense, can drive folks away quickly with its arrogant tone, and pedantic presentation…..  Nobody likes someone who talks like a prig, basically…..

To get back to the subject at hand, though, I’ll mention that watching people continues to be my favorite thing to do to pass the time…. When I was about 14 or so, I remember saving up my money for a couple months, to take to the County Fair, to spend on the carnival.    On the day my family went, I’d rush to the midway, play my games, ride some rides, try to win some prizes, and blow my saved up cash in about two hours of fun. 

I never minded it going so fast, because I would then go out to the main plaza, near the entrance, and watch the crowds, for hours on end, an endlessly fascinating parade of families, young couples, old retired folks, kids, the whole panorama of human culture, all right there, passing before my eyes…..

Now, I’m old, and watching people continues to be my favorite way to pass time, when there is nothing else to do to occupy the mind. The human parade is always changing, never the same, and provides an endless supply of food for thought, humor for the soul, and unlimited entertainment, watching how people interact, and live…. As Spock would obviously say, “Fascinating.”……

Since I’m old, I now have a few perks in life, one of which is what I like to call give-a-shititis, the most common attitude among those of us retirees who think…. We are at a point in life where it can no longer threaten us to behave in certain ways, and it’s difficult to make us do what we don’t wish to do…. What are they going to do to us? Make us old? Give us pain? Restrict our movement? Been there, done that….. For many of us, this means that all the things we’ve always been too polite to say, can now be said with relative impunity, as folks give us a bit of leeway in that respect. Besides, I call it what I do because it is what we DON’T do anymore, and that is give a shit what others think about what we say…..

This, as you might imagine, allows us to say stuff that we formerly would have kept to ourselves, and not care about whether or not that person wants to hear it…. It is a heady experience for a lot of oldsters, and can become habitual…. I don’t agree with those who say that is an occupational hazard that cannot be avoided; one’s demeanor toward others is always a matter of choice, regardless of age, and there is no excuse for being rude without cause; sadly, many older folks don’t get that.

They become grumps, quite simply, and find fault with everything around them, making life difficult for everyone with whom they come in contact…. I don’t ever want to be that kind of old person; I imagine one could end up pretty alone with that kind of attitude…. and I have no intention of being alone forever…. it’s lonely!….

So, I’ll work on my attitude, which isn’t too hard for me, because my own habit of watching others has given me a great love and respect for people, and I try to treat others as I’d want to be treated (the Golden Rule ALWAYS works well…. there is a reason it is a classic idea….). It works for me, as it would work for anyone who makes Love a greater force in their lives than Fear…. Fear is humanity’s greatest enemy, the one that steals our intelligence, our courage, and often, our life, when we let it control our thoughts and actions.

Hmm… I just noticed that I’ve been ranting, or at least, pontificating, for some time now, and we’re still only in the intro section…. Sorry ’bout that, I DO tend to get carried away sometimes, don’t I? Just can’t seem to shut up sometimes…. Oh well, c’est la vie, I suppose, and fairly common for this blog. I’m going to do what I usually do in these cases, and ignore the whole thing….

We’ll just leave things where they are, mid-flight, so to speak, and go on to the remaining portion of the program…. It won’t take TOO long, as I have a task to meet today in the BBR (the Big Blue Room, you know, the room on the other side of the doors of the place where your computer lives….)…. I have to visit my grandson, and spend money….   😆

So, to move things along toward completion of today’s task list, we’ll go on….. Shall we Pearl?…..
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“Good friends, good books and a sleepy conscience: this is the ideal life. (The conviction of the rich that the poor are happier is no more foolish than the conviction of the poor that the rich are.)” — Mark Twain

This has a familiar ring to it, which isn’t surprising, as I’ve used it a number of times in previous Pearls…. It is a good springboard for discussion about society, and human interaction, and quite frankly, would have been a good place to start today’s first pearl….

Unfortunately, during my last break from the chair, I went to take a shower, in preparation for visiting with Zackary, my grandson, slipped on the wet tub, managing to keep from falling by a quick movement and grab at the sink, but, by doing so, gave my back a nasty twist, which is now causing a flood of spasms, massive increasing stiffness, and, a five-step increase in my old friend, Pain…. So…. This paragraph may seem smooth and readable; that comes with a cost, of having to stop to move around, or lie down, every few minutes…. which makes it hard to maintain any continuity of thought, or speech, as manifested by this missive….

This is a pisser, to be honest…. I was supposed to go visit with my grandson today, and now won’t be able to go, as I just can’t face an hour or two on my feet in the park, trying to keep up with a two year old and his father…. It’s one of my high points in life, as I don’t get to see Zack, my grandson, but for a few times a year, and I hate to miss this opportunity…. But, I couldn’t be as involved as I’d like, and I’d just as soon not have any of his memories of me be of an old, frail man who can’t play with him very much, and grunts a lot moving around…. Karma can be a real Bitch sometimes, you know?….

Any who, I don’t want to get into all that today, it’s too depressing, and the pain is enough to deal with…. but, I can’t think very well right now, so I’m going to have to cheat again, and use some of my previous work to fill in…. At least there’s plenty to choose from…. I’ll be right back with a pearl, a blast from the soi-distant past…..

“He who flees will fight again.” — Tertullian (160-240 AD) — De Fuga in Persecutione, c. 10

Okay, I found a perfect pearl, from Halloween of 2012… and it is actually covers the same subject as the one I began today, with the Mark Twain quote, or, sort of… so, since this is already turning into an epic Pearl, for one so broken up by my painful approach to the writing…. enjoy, it’s not bad….

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

And here, poor fool, with all my lore
I stand no wiser than before.
— Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832)

“This instant is thine; the next is in the womb of futurity, and thou knowest not what it may bring forth; maturity of the unborn is in the keeping of the Law. Each future state is that thou has created in the present.” — Akhenaton? (c. B.C. 1375)

“The question is not whether we will die, but how we will live.” — Joan Borysenko

Living life well is a subjective goal, and, as such, whether or not it we are successful in reaching the goal is purely a subjective judgment. This kind of judgment requires introspection, which makes it somewhat of a conundrum for many people, as their skills at that particular activity are severely limited from disuse. Very few people today spend much time in self-examination, from what I can see. If they did, they sure wouldn’t act the way they do, or dress the way they are, or carry on such a foolish, self-destructive course of living….

“The study of the errors into which great minds have fallen in the pursuit of truth can never be uninstructive. . . No man is so wise but that he may learn some wisdom from his past errors, either of thought or action, and no society has made such advances as to be capable of no improvement from the retrospect of its past folly and credulity.” — Charles Mackay

Introspection, however, requires both honesty and ruthlessness, in being able to recognize those things within us that are not of value, and to remove them from our persona. As such, it is what most folks would term as “hard” or “difficult”, and they will avoid it at all cost, laziness being a rather common human trait. It is much simpler, and easier, to just take what all the powers that be, (otherwise known as either the beloved ruling class, or those most heinous of criminal manipulators, preachers/priests), are selling as moral standards, and use them, regardless of whether or not they are truly moral or not…. and I assure you, mostly, they are not….

“Religion is the masterpiece of the art of animal training, for it trains people as to how they shall think.” — Arthur Schopenhauer

I often feel like Goethe, in what he stated above, as I believe myself to be one of the few who actually do use introspection on a regular basis. I believe this because, if other folks were using this process, the world would look a lot different. Women would feel safe walking the streets; old folks would feel cared for; gay, lesbian, and transgender individuals would not suffer discrimination for their orientation; racism would be dead, and religion would join mythology as a piece of mankind’s past, rather than its current status as our jailer/executioner…..

“Being good at being stupid doesn’t count.” — Smart Bee

All of these societal problems (bigotry, racism, discrimination, slavery, entitlement, misogyny, etc. )arise from the attitude of elitism held by those individuals among us who never look within, to see just how ugly their inner selves have become, from using the sick, twisted elitism as preached by the modern religious and political leaders.

We, as a species, cannot afford to listen any more to the Judeo-Christian (note: add Talmudic, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, Shinto, etc…. gigoid, 3/24/13) ethic as propounded by the beloved ruling class; this kind of entitlement and aggrandizement has led us to the very brink of extinction, as we continue to treat the planet as our toy, instead of as our home.

We cannot keep pouring millions of tons of carbon monoxide into the atmosphere and expect nothing to happen, because what WILL happen is already happening…. our weather is changing, and not in a good way…. the planet is warming up, and when it is warm enough, the ice at the poles will melt, and everything on Earth will feel the effects….

“The faith in which I was brought up assured me that I was better than other people: I was saved, they were damned … Our hymns were loaded with arrogance–self-congratulation on how cozy we were with the Almighty and what a high opinion he had of us, what hell everybody else would catch come judgment day.” — Robert A. Heinlein

As Akhenaton pointed out over 3000 years ago, what we do in the present will determine how the future will be. What our species is doing now will guarantee that most of us won’t be around to see what happens in that future, because we will be dead within a hundred years, or less, if things don’t begin to change TODAY…. Since it is unlikely that will happen, well, we may as well take the advice given to many school children in the 50’s, in learning to deal with an atomic blast…. to wit: bend over and kiss your ass goodbye….  I hate to be so cynical, but, introspection requires honesty, so….

“You were s’posed to laugh!” — Zippy the Pinhead
__________________________________

It’s probably a bit egocentric, but, hey, it is MY blog, right?…. Here is a poem I wrote last August, once again on the subject so close to my mind today…. my old friend and constant companion…. Pain….

Denial of Comfort

Baleful chairs become the enemy, heralded in red
seemingly welcome softness beckons with a smile,
waiting, content with slaughter, they are finally led
screaming in agony, deluged in venom all the while.

Desperate distraction becomes such a friendless fire
for all the patterns of autumn’s pale dismay,
leaving sincerely latent trails in spirals of twisted wire,
while memory insists, again, upon failure, palpably evil, and fey.

Fat, jaded tears would have fallen in good time,
if only the suitable suitor had scaled the garden’s wall.
Credence for discounted prices luckily in their prime
bring only fascinated eyes into such a hallowed hall.

Searching for answers is ever a clever portrayal
with studious accouterments to fulfill each common rule.
Arguably patient pictures of science and honest betrayal
shall evermore languish, in light of passion so elegantly cruel.

~~ gigoid

__________________________________

Okay, so you already know I’m cheating today…. therefore, another pearl from the past isn’t going to fool anybody, unless I try to pass it off as fresh, and I refuse to go there…. Hence, here is another pearl, which may give any newbies more information than they need…. it might scare them off. But, I’m nothing, if not honest…. so, I give you this again too-long, but, too bad, so sad piece from November of 2012….

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

:GIGO: /gi:’goh/ [acronym] 1. `Garbage In, Garbage Out’ — usually said in response to {luser}s who complain that a program didn’t “do the right thing” when given imperfect input or otherwise mistreated in some way.  Also commonly used to describe failures in human decision making due to faulty, incomplete, or imprecise data.  2. `Garbage In, Gospel Out’: this more recent expansion is a sardonic comment on the tendency human beings have to put excessive trust in `computerized’ data. — from The on-line Hacker Jargon File V423

Many years ago, I adopted the user name gigoid, taking it from the above definition, and adding an “id” for, of course, identification purposes; with that suffix, I am assured of human status, i.e. hominid, humanoid, etc.  I chose this acronym because it is the perfect reminder of the basic integrity that is built into all computers, i.e., they can only do what we tell them to do, and cannot lie. Thus, if our results are wrong, the error lies in our input, not in the computer; this automatically cuts in half the number of places to look for the problem.

I like to think that my awareness of this principle characteristic is what has allowed me to use computers without suffering many of the common difficulties such as crashes, freezes, and blue screens of death. Only once have I ever encountered one of those on my own computer, and that was the result of a virus my defenses missed… my fault, of course, I hadn’t updated soon enough…

Oh, I’ve encountered that famous blue screen before, when I worked as a computer tech back in the late 90’s, setting up LAN’s and office systems for H&R Block…. a significant percentage of machines were dead soon after coming out of the factory box. But, on my own computers, I am very careful never to break any of the basic rules that govern those kinds of mishaps…. and I owe it all to a wise choice of user name…. Well, it’s fun to think about it that way anyway….

So, who is gigoid? Well, if you’ve hung about this blog site for long, I’ve certainly given y’all enough of my inner workings to look at, in my rants, and in my old school pearls, as well as in my poetry, which is quite revealing, to me….. but, then, if it wasn’t, I most likely couldn’t write it….

Any who, to give the short answer to that question, I’ll post below some pearls that give insight into what I believe to be true, and how I try to live…. Like any weak human, I don’t always succeed at being as moral or ethical as I can be, but, I do try, and I do feel pangs of regret when I don’t, so cut me some slack, eh? Just kidding…. What I am is all what I am, though I’m not Popeye…. and these pearls are what I see in the mirror…..

“They are able because they think they are able.” — Virgil

“Excellence is an art won by training and habituation.  We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly.  We are what we repeatedly do.  Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.” — Aristotle

“An epigram often flashes light into regions where reason shines but dimly.” — E. P. Whipple

It is my firm belief that it is a mistake to hold firm beliefs. — Smart Bee

Computers can never replace human stupidity. — Smart Bee

“Do not confuse “duty” with what other people expect of you; they are utterly different. Duty is a debt you owe to yourself to fulfill obligations you have assumed voluntarily. Paying that debt can entail anything from years of patient work to instant willingness to die. Difficult it may be, but the reward is self-respect.


But there is no reward at all for doing what other people expect of you, and to do so is not merely difficult, but impossible. It is easier to deal with a footpad than it is with the leech who wants “just a few minutes of your time, please — this won’t take long.” Time is your total capital, and the minutes of your life are painfully few. If you allow yourself to fall into the vice of agreeing to such requests, they quickly snowball to the point where these parasites will use up 100 percent of your time — and squawk for more!


So learn to say No – and to be rude about it when necessary. Otherwise you will not have time to carry out your duty, or to do your own work, and certainly no time for love and happiness. The termites will nibble away your life and leave none of it for you. (This rule does not mean that you must not do a favor for a friend, or even a stranger. But let the choice be yours. Don’t do it because it is “expected” of you.) “

— Lazarus Long, from Time Enough for Love, by Robert Heinlein

“Do I look like someone who cares about what God thinks?” — Zippy the Pinhead

Well, that’s enough about me…. Hope this helps clear up any confusion, and if not, well, hey, life goes on…. all we can do is all we can do, and no more….
__________________________________

I’ve tried to read this over, proofing-wise, and can only say, well, I’ve done all I can do…. I think it’s close to what it should be, and, if you will remember axiom #1 of Peruaosophy, you’ll realize that’s enough for me…. (For the uninitiated, Peruaosophy is the Philosophy of Pearls, as created by gigoid (yep, that’s me….) in 1986…. #1 says, to wit: “I think I am…. that’s close enough.” ) I’ve relied heavily on my past work today, but, given my justification, feel no remorse whatsoever… and neither should you….  😆      Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


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

gigoid

dozer3

9 thoughts on “The stupidity factor was obviously miscalculated….

  1. So…there is life beyond the doors of the computer room is there? lol… I must look into it sometime!! People watching is certainly educational…not always in ways they would appreciate!
    Sorry to hear about your back…I am constantly on guard about my own so I know just how painful and miserable it is when it does “go.” Silly thoughts like “Will I ever recover from this or am I doomed to be in this semi-incapacitated state of pain and misery forever more?” tend to flash through the brain cell unchecked. Hope you make a speedy recovery from it! 🙂

    • Europa, my dear, of course there is life out there…. the computer room has to be SOMEWHERE…. and there are so many real people out there, though, sadly no rewind button…

      My back is something I will have to deal with for the rest of my time on this sad little ball of mud, so it’s all of a piece, in the big picture…. just makes for a bad day or two, or, if the drugs are effective, a bad few hours… no big, and nothing I’m not used to…. I slipped, but, knowing the danger of that, it doesn’t happen often, as I’m usually pretty careful…. I guess I was just a bit distracted thinking of seeing the grandson, and forgot to make sure of my balance point…. SIGH…. Oh well, I’ll see him next time… one of the small, but comforting, advantages of my age is knowing that time can be on our side, if we trust it to move along without us trying to control it…. I’ll still be here around in a few months, when I get another opportunity…. His birthday is coming in June, so maybe I’ll see him then… Good thing to hope for…. and I’m rambling again…. I MUST be getting old, next I’ll be drooling in my soup… 😆

      Thanks for commenting, and I’m glad you enjoyed today’s post….. 😉

  2. You always manage to find the most interesting quotes! Sorry to hear about your back. Perils of age and all that, huh. But at least you’re philosophising instead of playing bowls (or as well as?)

    • Thanks… I’m glad you liked today’s post… indeed, the perils of age are weighing on me heavily these days…. but, I think I’m starting to get used to it…. I hope so anyway…. 😆 Thanks for taking time to comment, and sorry I didn’t get to this reply earlier… I missed this one somehow…. Take care & Blessed Be….

  3. The three dot journalism gambit is most useful and I use the three dash gambit to replace parenthetical marks () because the post editor always places them in embarrassing positions – – the rest of the post here is pure philosophical genius and feeds both mind and soul.

    • John… I’m glad you liked today’s post, it took some effort, so it’s nice to know it was well accepted…. I agree about the three or four dot effect… It is useful for tying together two ideas that otherwise would take extreme use of commas and parentheses to keep straight, even though it is contrary to all that AP style says about that…. Fuck ’em if they can’t take a joke, it works for me…. 😆

  4. Reblogged this on gigoid and commented:

    Ffolkes,

    Much of the world, or, this little corner of it, is on fire. Normally, it’s not much of a worry, but, I have four family members (2 brother, my son, & daughter) living right in the path of the wildfires running out of control here in Northern California. My son and one brother have had to evacuate, & the others may yet also have to go… so, to say the least, I’m a bit distracted by events in the BBR, & there won’t be a fresh Pearl for another day, at least. Here’s a pretty decent one I found in the few moments I took to search, first posted in 2013…. I hope you enjoy it, & if not, well, oh, well…. I’ll be back when things are a little more stable…. Take care, & stay alert….

    gigoid

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