A (padded) room, with a view….


Jumping straight up, I twisted in air, spinning around in a full aerial circle, hands out, like an ice-skater imitating a top…. As the Frisbee flew toward me, I caught it, behind my back, while still in the air, spinning…. Hitting the ground, continuing the spin, I flung the Frisbee back to my cohort, in a backhand toss, to where he stood, a bit over 75 yards away, with two equally placed skips, before hitting him in his hand, in exactly the spot from where he had thrown to me, in which he had frozen in position, to receive the return throw…..

Across Sproul Plaza, applause and shouts rang out, as the other members of our group of hippie Frisbee hounds showed their appreciation, of a difficult, flawlessly executed trick catch and throw…. For a young hippie such as myself, it was a watershed moment, exceeded in emotional impact only by the day when the official UC Berkeley Frisbee Team invited me to go with them, as part of the team, to the 1970 National Frisbee Championships, being held in Chicago, during summer of the next year…. Sadly, circumstances precluded my inclusion on the team that year, but, being invited to go was, for many years, the favorite of all of the honors I’d received in my life….

You’re no doubt asking yourself, (because you’re too polite to interrupt me…), what does this have to do with anything? It’s not exactly a politically charged blurb, is it? That is, unless you realize we are talking about hippies, at UC Berkeley, in the early summer of 1969, the year after I matriculated as a freshman…. That venue, at that time, was, perhaps, the most politically charged place in the entire world at that time, as the students at the University carried on the time-honored hobby of all students, to wit: political unrest and criticism of whatever regime was currently in power, just about anywhere in the world….

Today, of course, that hobby is being honorably pursued, in Colombia, in Bolivia, in Venezuela, and numerous other countries where students are the vanguard of revolution; it has been so for hundreds of years, since universities began to teach young minds, filling them with new ideas, which, naturally, in the flush of youthful passion, leads to political protest…. The politicians will always lie, cheat, and steal; it is their nature; it is the nature of the university student to object to that, loudly and with great passion, until some sort of change is made, even if only superficial, as is generally the case…. The BRC doesn’t really like to make ANY changes, so whatever they do agree to is usually pretty shallow….

Oops, I’m ranting, aren’t I? SIGH…. I keep telling myself not to do that, but, it seems that almost anything I write about these days will remind me, somehow, of how our beloved leaders are screwing with us on a daily basis…. I suppose I can chalk that habit up to the hippie in me….

I can’t jump, run, and throw like I used to, but my political chops have gotten much bigger, and much more pointed than when I was suffused with so much energy, back in the day…. Of course, I no longer need to develop my immunity to pepper spray, so, that’s something, I’d say…. Maybe if I cut my hair…..

No fucking way…. It’s taken me nearly ten years to get it to the point it’s at, halfway down my back, and, at my age, I don’t think I’d ever get it this long again…. I have to admit, the growth rate has definitely slowed down, and there is NOT as much of it as there used to be…. In fact, my hairline now resembles that of an ancient Druid priest, from the age when they wore their hair in what was called a “tonsure”, I believe, with the front half of the head shaved, and the back half grown as long as it would grow….. Distinctive, and it gave even young men the appearance of being an aged holder of wisdom, handy in their line of work….

In my case, however, we are merely talking the results of advancing years, and there isn’t much I can do, other than leave it be, to grow the best it may…. It still makes me feel better when I wear it down, and get the “look” from all the local yokels; I’ve always loved to make an impression, and create in other people some sort of reaction, or at minimum, some thought…. even if it is obviously painful for them to use those muscles that never get much exercise…. I’m a natural gadfly, I suppose, having learned of that word when very young, a word Socrates used to apply to describe himself, and his relation to society…..

Since that is true, we can add it to the seven, no eight, solid paragraphs I just spewed, which obviously indicate that my writing chops have been sufficiently warmed up, making it the right time to get on with this, before it gets away from me, as it so often does in the mornings…. In fact, we’ll go with method #4, & end this right here….

Shall we Pearl?…..

The time is out of joint: O cursed spite,
That ever I was born to set it right!

— William Shakespeare (1564-1616), Hamlet — Act i, Sc. 5


“If you would know a man, observe how your cat treats him.” — Smart Bee


“A House member who has been indicted does not lose any rights or privileges under federal law or the chamber’s rules, according to a report by the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service.”

In the normal course of events, a small piece of information such as this would stimulate my ire in a heartbeat…. and it hurts me no end to have to admit that this is a normal course…. All of which is a long-winded way to say, yes, this DOES piss me off, a lot…. I suppose it’s a natural hazard in a democracy, when the legislators begin to realize they can write the laws to suit themselves, and to their advantage, all without ever informing those who elected them of what they’re doing…. This is how the treasury is looted, on a consistent, ongoing basis, as the elected officials in this country pass laws that set them up for life, just for being elected….

I’m too angry to even rant about this right now; it’s very early yet, but, if I start in on a subject like this one, that gets me going so easily, I’ll be down and out by 9 AM, recovering from a massive adrenaline jolt….. As a retiree, there’s nothing essentially wrong about going back down for the day, but, I’ve got some other stuff to get done….

So, I’ll put together an old-school pearl, with parameters that should soothe my anger, at least for the time being…. I’m sure it will return again, tomorrow, with another headline…. It never fails, and I don’t see why it should do so now…. For the nonce, enjoy this group of sharp, pointed pearls of great beauty and grace….. (How does he do that? It can’t be easy to make a round, lustrous pearl come out sharp and pointed…. Just watch, you’ll see…)

“They are voting whether to keep a governor two years or four. I think a good, honest governor should get four years, and the others life.” — Will Rogers

“I LOVE my country, but I FEAR my government.” — Smart Bee

“No creo en Dios, pero le tengo miedo.’ [I don’t believe in God, but I’m afraid of Him.]  — Gabriel Garcia Marquez, — “El Amor en los Tiempos de Colera”, 1985

“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

“In a nation ruled by swine, all pigs are upward-mobile-and the rest of us are fucked until we can put our acts together: not necessarily to win, but mainly to keep from losing completely. We owe that to ourselves and our crippled self-image as something better than a nation of panicked sheep.” — Hunter S. Thompson (b. 1939), journalist — The Great Shark Hunt, Jacket Copy for Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1979)

“If you make any money, the government shoves you in the creek once a year with it in your pockets, and all that don’t get wet you can keep.” — Will Rogers

HISTORY  Look, there’s no point dwelling on the past, okay? What’s done is done. It’s much better left forgotten. No-one wants to know about adolescent foolishness these days, do they? Just leads to embarrassment in later life. After all, the damage wasn’t all that bad, and the RSPCA said they wouldn’t press charges. So just forget it. (And actually, I reckon the hippopotamus kinda liked it.) — Daniel Bowen’s TOXIC CUSTARPEDIA

I started to use Will Rogers’ quotes as bookends for this pearl, but the HISTORY entry was just too perfect an ending to move it elsewhere…. All in all, a pretty good set of barbs, firmly planted in the place they’ll do the most good….

I keep telling y’all, it’s in the wrist…. Onward, eh? (I’m feeling a bit Canadian today, eh?.)


No ups, no extras…. just a good poem, from a good, no, a master poet….

Goading the Muse

this man used to be an
interesting writer,
he was able to say brisk and
refreshing things.
at the time
I suggested to the editors and
the critics that he was one to
be watched
and also that he had hardly yet been
and that he certainly should now be
this writer used some of my
remarks as blurbs for his
books, which I didn’t
all of his publications were little
chapbooks, 16 to 32
they came out at a
rapid rate,
perhaps three or four a
the problem was that each
chapbook seemed a little weaker
than the one that preceded
but he continued to use my old
my wife noticed the change
in his writing
‘what’s happened to his
writing?’ she asked me.
‘he’s doing too much of it, he’s
pushing it out, forcing it.’
‘this stuff is bad, you ought to
tell him to stop using your
‘I can’t do that, I just wish he
wouldn’t publish so much.’
‘well, you publish all the
time too.’
‘with me,’ I told her, ‘it’s

yesterday I received another of his
little chapbooks
with his delicate dedication scrawled
on the title page.
this latest effort was totally
the words just fell off the
dead on

where had he gone?

too much ambition?
too much just doing it for the sake
of doing it?
just not waiting for the words to
pile up inside and then
explode of their own

I decided then I should take a whole week
be on the safe side,
just shut the computer down,
forget the whole damned silly
for awhile.

as I said, that was

~ Charles Bukowski ~~


Earlier, I avoided ranting, for reasons sufficient unto the day; I also used up the old-school option, though it isn’t exactly illegal to employ it as needed…. it merely risks stimulating boredom or resentment rather than cogitation, never a good trade. So, I’ll do what I always do in such cases; I’ll give in to the urge to be an American, emulating my Congressional leaders, thus making it okay to cheat…. When I do it, though, it won’t cost you any money…. or, any dignity, either….

Here is a relatively short, but nonetheless clear discussion of at least part of the principles of Taoism, which comes closest to what I believe about the Universe, more so than any other philosophy I’ve encountered in all my seeking after the wisdom of the ages…. I can’t say I would consider myself to be expert, but, I do feel my understanding of the basic ideas are accurate, and can, hopefully, be helpful to anyone who would like to achieve the degree of peace and serenity that I have found in my life…. I may not have the patience, depth of compassion, or manner of the Buddha, but, I’m pretty content with the Universe, just the way it is, all in all….

From 12/15/12:

“Do you have the patience to wait till your mud settles and the water is clear? Can you remain unmoving till the right actions arises by itself?” — Lao Tzu

Ever since being first exposed to the precepts of Taoism, back when I was in college in the late 60’s, it has always appealed to my sense of rightness, making the closest approach to what I personally believe about the Universe at large. Not the mystical parts, that cater to the religious order of the time it first was clarified by Lao Tzu, but the essence of the concept of reality, as being both within our perception, and unknown to us as beyond our understanding. We may not possess the necessary sense(s) to be capable of receiving such information, whether about reality or fantasy, and if we assume the omnipotence of a god, then we would not be able to comprehend their existence, lacking the tools to perceive them with our five or six senses…..

This knowledge, however, of what is beyond us, is tempered by the deduction that, as a physical part of the universe, we are connected to it, and to every other part, if only by sharing that existence. The connection, intuitively, is deeper than merely the physical; it extends somehow into the spiritual plane, which, though not tangible, is nonetheless a proven part of our mental reality. (What IS the mind?) It is this very lack of the ability to explain by which we may know the connection exists, as it echoes the nature of reality itself, which cannot be explained in words. Goodness knows why I’m trying, to be sure…. this is getting pretty esoteric, although, so far, it is consistently rational, if not entirely illuminating.

“Since everything in life is but an experience perfect in being what it is, having nothing to do with good or bad, acceptance or rejection, one may well burst out in laughter.” — Long Chen Pa

And what better way to acknowledge and celebrate the perfection that we can see, or hear, feel, smell, taste, or imagine?…… It’s certainly preferable to a long, dusty discussion of esoteric concepts, and will encourage enlightenment just as efficiently, if not quite so verbally. In some way, I’m always looking for the perfect quote, the ultimate aphorism, that delivers that cosmic truth we are all seeking in one swell foop, and the above from Long Chen Pa comes very close to it, especially when considered in the light of what one concludes from considering the answers to the first two questions today. As a Westerner who has learned to appreciate what the East brings us, the following resonates very well….

“Somehow, in the midst of their horrid history, the best among the _gaijin_ learned a wonderful lesson.  They learned to distrust themselves, to doubt even what they were taught to believe or what their egos make them yearn to see.  To know that even truth must be scrutinized, it was a great discovery, almost as great as the treasure we of the East have to offer them in return, the gift of harmony.” — David Brin – Dr. Pak’s Preschool

There’s the key, ffolkes, right there in front of you…. Even truth must be scrutinized, or the universe will have its way with you, and you may never find the gift of harmony that is also there for the taking….. There, not so esoteric, after all…. not too shabby, eh what?…..

“The ancient Taoist sages were poised and alert…. like ice on the verge of melting.” — Taoist proverb


I’m sure I’ve done worse, but, I may not have done much better; only you would know; I can only guess…. That being said, without even proofing or editing, I’m going to send it off to the printer, over at Oxford Press, so I can get started on the submission of my doctorate thesis…. (I can only wish it were true…. I just like the idea of a doctorate in humanities from Oxford…. but, it’s a bit late in life to start another university stint….) Any who, I can see I’m starting to blather, so, I’ll save us all from that, and begone…. 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


7 thoughts on “A (padded) room, with a view….

  1. Ffolkes,
    This note is not to point out any errors, though there might be some purists who would think so; they are, in this case, misguided, and mistaken…. There IS a point of accuracy that may SEEM to be present, in the third section…

    Those with a sharp eye may have noted the discussion is based on concepts of Taoist philosophy…. yet, in the introductory paragraphs above the discussion, which was first posted in 2012, I mention my own lack of resemblance to the Buddha, as if what follows is a Buddhist tract…

    Okay, you’re right… it was a mistake… I wrote Buddha, but I MEANT Lao Tzu, and though I did mention him in the tag list, he isn’t there in that section… Nor, I might add, is the Dalai Lama, who would have been an even greater mistake…. not because he doesn’t have the same aura of wisdom and serenity as the Buddha, or Lao Tzu, but because he is my contemporary, not just my superior in knowledge of the teachings of the Buddha…

    All three of these men, however, are appropriate, in terms of the sort of demeanor and inner strength which was my desired goal in what I did write…. so, I choose not to think of it as an error, so much as a choice, made in slight confusion as a result of the similarity of personality in all three of the mentioned sages….

    There, I have covered my proverbial ass, and I can now go on to obsess over something even more trivial, should I choose….

    See ya….

    gigoid, the uncontrollable motormouth….


    • My friend, your intimate knowledge of Hippies is sadly lacking, I can see…

      I was one of the second wave of Hippies, who were tested on the protest battlefields of Berkeley in 1968 and 69, during the height of the Vietnam War protests that swept this country then… What many don’t realize is that being a Hippie did NOT preclude such athleticism, or, for that matter, assuming the stance of the warrior-scholar, as exemplified in the Art of War, by Sun Tzu…

      I was also a three-sport letter individual in high school, All-League in football and baseball for three years, and initially tried out for the Cal football program as a freshman… which, I found out, is a completely different game; I was exactly half the size of the only person on the team slower than me in the 40-yard dash, meaning everyone else was faster… Not good odds, so, I took up martial arts… judo, karate, & eventually, kung-fu, which I still perform, if gently, as Tai Chi…

      I wasn’t the only Hippie athlete, either… There had to be a FEW of us, at least, to be able to throw to and with each other…

      Hurt? Sure… It’s no picnic to jump five feet in the air off steps, and blow the landing, when the surface is rough concrete… but, the only sympathy you get is in the catcalls and hoots from your mates for looking bad… unless there was blood of course, in which case you’d be offered a joint, or a beer…

      Never underestimate Hippies, my good man… that was the mistake the establishment made back then… If you’ll note, the Vietnam War ended in 1975, due mainly to the efforts of those “Hippies”, who NOW are my generation, and in charge of a lot of what was then in the hands of others… The activism that my generation adopted has carried throughout our lives, and, as you will see if you read enough of my material, the same issues are being fought now, only with a bit more desperation, as our time to fix the planet is getting short….

      Gosh, ya think I got a bit overly worked up? Maybe… I actually had fun, as I was trying to be funny, at least part of the time, but, it turned again into a rant, which is my legacy, in part, from the PTSD that is so common to those who fight against society’s ills, whether as a soldier for the Beloved Ruling Class, or, as a scholar/warrior on the side of the bourgeoisie, the people, as I have always been… I’ve USED my freedom, and I’ll protect it to the best of my ability, and there I go, getting ramped up again….

      Sheesh…. sorry, but, this is one of the risks one assumes when commenting here…. setting me free to rant again, after I’ve already shot my wad in the Pearl… You’re just lucky, I guess, as I’m good with my pain for now, and able to sit and write for much longer than usual… I’m gonna go catch up with a few of my other friends, while I can….

      Take care, Antonio-san, and Blessed Be….


      Ned, aka gigoid the dubious

      • Wow that is one hell of a record my friend so i like take back my minor pander ten fold. You are an amazing man and hopefully some day they will write a book about your journey if they haven’t already ^_^

        • 🙂

          Thanks for that, but, I don’t feel that my life has been all that amazing, and I didn’t mean to get so carried away in defending Hippiedom; I guess there’s still a bit of baggage left from those controversial times, still being carried around in my back pocket….. but, I have had a lot of fun, and interesting experiences… I’m fortunate to have the wit to appreciate life, and the courage, learned from my father, to stand up to it, as well as the good fortune to be blessed with a strong healthy body, which allowed me to pursue all the things in my life I wished to do… For me, that’s enough….

          I am trying to write down what I know, and believe, here at the end of my days (though, hopefully, the last of them isn’t due for some years yet….), so my words can be my legacy to my children…. If anyone felt that what I’ve done is worth a book, well, maybe someone would learn something, so, that would be okay, I guess… I’m arrogant, and somewhat conceited, but, not really ambitious, or strongly ego-driven… a bit of a contrast, which is probably why I’m confused so often…

          Any who, I tend to get over-blown with all my replies: I’m all about dialogue, y’know? That’s how communication happens…. and, remember, everything I say here is not meant to hurt, or put anyone down in any way, unless, of course, they are assholes, in which case we generally return the favor….So, don’t be offended when I do get worked up, ‘kay? No offense intended, ever…. unless, as I said, asked for first….

          Thanks again for reading, and for commenting… Take care….



          • No i like your long responses i mean it shows that you have a lot to share with people and there is nothing wrong with that. The idea that you want to share your wisdom with people is what this world needs. I mean what can any one get out of simple pow wows. It just reduces the build up to creating relationships in general

  2. Reblogged this on gigoid and commented:


    The physical issue which makes it difficult to sit for any length of time again kept me from completing the Pearl upon which I’ve been working. In the few moments this morning I’ve had at the computer, I managed to find a very good archived Pearl, with a very fine poem from our old friend Charles, (Bukowski, that is…), and some decent ranting by yours truly. It will do for now. It will have to, for it’s all I’ve got. In fact, I’m outta here, having reached my limit for this morning. I’ll see y’all soon; the latest effort is almost there…. SIGH… What with going slowly blind, and not being able to sit, it’s getting tough… but, I am determined….

    See ya, ffolkes, as soon as I can…

    gigoid, the dubious


Thanks for visiting! Please feel free to comment, and, please, play nicely....

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s