Passionate chlorides never dissemble….

Ffolkes,

“God must love assholes — She made so many of them.”

~~ Hilarious Bee ~~

Urban illusions

Urban Illusion


Is this thing on?…. Ah, okay, then…. Hello, there, again…. I thought I’d begin with a bit of a different tone today, reflecting reality more closely than is the customary case at this point. Having done so, I’ve saluted the conventions, so to speak, and, should now be free to indulge my whimsy to my heart’s content. If that isn’t possible, I want a refund…. Oh. Wait…. Right. Never mind….

Let’s try this…. I’ve got three or four days to get through until I have internet service at home, and , & the process of getting to a Wi-fi spot in the morning is becoming a pain (of which I already have quite enough, thank you very much….). This doesn’t even begin to factor in all the other crap going on, so, to say it’s a challenging time is both appropriate, and, sadly accurate. To avoid any chance at whining about it, we’ll just go on to the oyster beds, and let Fate do what it may…. Luigi, you know what to do; the rest of you, look intelligent, if you can….

Shall we pearl?

“Sick cultures show a complex of symptoms … but a *dying* culture invariably exhibits personal rudeness. Bad manners. Loss of consideration for others in minor matters. A loss of politeness, of gentle manners, is more significant than is a riot.” — Friday’s boss (“Two Canes” Baldwin)

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Jack Bruce

Image from express.co.uk.com via Google Images


Jack Bruce is one of Scotland’s shining lights in the musical world; his body of work extends fifty years back in to the dark ages of rock & roll. As a founding member of one of rocks legendary bands, Cream, he stamped his style of playing, and living, on every piece he ever played. I admire him for living his life with gusto, and honor, from all appearances, and, for his obvious love of Life at Large…. Here he is, with mates Ginger Baker and Eric Clapton, from 2005, in the Cream Reunion Concert in London…. Enjoy!….

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Jack Bruce

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le penseur-rodin

Le Penseur, “The Thinker” by August Rodin


I have plenty of angst, but, no time to write, as I must go post…. Here’s one from the archives for the purpose of sublimation….

From 4/17/2013:

“A thing is not proved because no one has ever questioned it…Skepticism is the first step towards truth.” — Smart Bee

As I was cruising through Smart Bee this morning, looking for inspiration for section 3, I came across this little gem, unattributed. It sounds like it could have come from a number of different philosophers, all of whom are noted for their wisdom and perspicacity (another great word….). It is also a part of the human flaw that has contributed to many of the problems we face as a society, and as a species.

Actually, it might be more accurate to say that the lack of this in humans is part of the flaw; most people one talks to would not agree with this idea, as stated. In fact, it is directly opposed to the educational premises of many cultures, especially those heavily influenced by religions, such as those in Mexico, Central and South America, where Catholicism is a powerful factor in society, and in the governing of that society. India, and much of the Eastern Hemisphere, too, have societies that are heavily influenced by religion, though with more participant sects than is true in the Western Hemisphere; Hinduism, Buddhism, Shinto, to name a few, are always a contributing factor in the political events that have shaped history.

“The common dogma [of fundamentalists] is fear of modern knowledge, inability to cope with the fast change in a scientific-technological society, and the real breakdown in apparent moral order in recent years That is why hate is the major fuel, fear is the cement of the movement, and superstitious ignorance is the best defence against the dangerous new knowledge. When you bring up arguments that cast serious doubts on their cherished beliefs you are not simply making a rhetorical point, you are threatening their whole Universe and their immortality. That provokes anger and quite frequently violence.” — G Gaia

As a result of this influence, many people tend to reject skepticism, as it doesn’t fit in with what they have been taught, which is to never question anything told to them by persons in positions of authority. Churches tend to encourage this sort of attitude, as their outrageous claims of divinity, and supernatural events performed by their deities, do not stand up well to scrutiny by an objective eye. The leaders of the churches thus play right into the hands of the Beloved Ruling Class, as they counsel their flocks to obey worldly, temporal authority as readily as they are conditioned to obey the secular variety…..

“I just stepped on a factoid!” – Zippy the Pinhead

Thankfully, not all of humanity is defenseless against this sort of conditioning. There are many ffolkes out there who don’t buy into the sort of psychological blackmail being promulgated by the preachers, priests, imams, and shamans of all shapes and sizes around the world, and a large number of them seem to end up blogging, right here on WordPress…. So, I end up preaching to the choir pretty often. But, that’s okay, too, because I know that occasionally, one of those folks who do believe in what they are told, without any questions or doubts, will read this, and, if nothing else, will think about what I’ve said…. Who knows, maybe I’ll go viral, and the whole world will remember that WE ALL ARE GODS?”…… (Remember?  Axiom # 3…. “Thou art God, you know…. Let’s do lunch….)

“Youth of today!  Join me in a mass rally for traditional mental attitudes!” — Zippy the Pinhead

I suppose that’s a note from my subconscious, to let me know I’ve gone far enough off the rails for now, and should let these good people get on with their lives, rather than wandering around in mine…. Goodness knows where we’ll end up…. So, anyway, just remember to cultivate your sense of doubt, your “crap detector”, as it were, and never, ever take anything “on authority”, without tangible proof…. You’ll find Life to be less confusing that way; certainly, it makes it a lot easier to look yourself in the mirror in the morning…..

“This is patently absurd; but whoever wishes to become a philosopher must learn not to be frightened by absurdities.” — Bertrand Russell

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Comedy_Tragedy

Notes of process and program…

Poems, alas, don’t chase through my head,
bumping and pushing each other like brothers at dinner.
They’re more ripped out of my innards, instead.
Time and circumstance reveal no ultimate winner.

Simmering and bubbling near my unconscious mind
these maddening rhymes blind me sans glimmer.
Building until bursting as if to be dined and wined,
the remaining denizens appear much slimmer.

Fiery visions retain such glorious fatal dimension,
in retrospect, yet fail to leave a permanent scar,
until blessed, or cursed, with focused attention,
singing, crying, bleeding, fast as a movie star.

Pretty soon can’t be soon enough, she said
to a chameleon colored thief bathed in moonlight.
Fancy candles in stripes of blue, gold, and red
foster honest dreams in shades of white.

Passage to daylight is problematic, at best:
beastly ghosts of insomniacs cast no shadow.
Even judges with robes can pass the wrong test
while the rest of us go with what we know.

~~ gigoid ~~


Written 1/13/2013.

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buddah-out-to-lunch_s

    Not much to say ’bout this one; it’s pretty damn perfect, and will explain itself….

“Happiness depends upon ourselves.”

~~ Aristotle ~~


“Go ahead and play the blues if it’ll make you happy.” — Homer in “Moaning Lisa”, from The Simpsons

“The secret of man’s being is not only to live but to have something to live for.’ — Fedor Dostoevsky

“You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” — Plato

“When I examine myself and my methods of thought, I come to the conclusion that the gift of fantasy has meant more to me than any talent for abstract, positive thinking.” — Albert Einstein

“A good word is an easy obligation, but not to speak ill, requires only our silence, which costs us nothing.” — Tillotson

“A dreamer is one who can only find his way by moonlight, and his punishment is that he sees the dawn before the rest of the world.” — Oscar Wilde

“Dying is a very dull, dreary affair.   And my advice to you is to have nothing whatever to do with it.” — W. Somerset Maugham

Fear death?–to feel the fog in my throat,
The mist in my face.
     .     .     .     .     .     .     .
No! let me taste the whole of it, fare like my peers,
The heroes of old;
Bear the brunt, in a minute pay glad life’s arrears
Of pain, darkness, and cold.

~~ Robert Browning — Prospice ~~


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Coming up with worthwhile writing while in my current mental state is becoming even more of a challenge than usual; I find myself ranting far too often, as my mind works its way through all the CRAP with which the world is keeping me occupied. Gotta say, it’s not as much fun as I had hoped, when I recall my hopes for being retired. But, there are signs of hope, so, we’ll go with that for now. Sometimes, it’s just a matter of enduring…. See y’all sometime in the near future; a precise prediction isn’t feasible…. Deal with it, ffolkes; some days, that’s all you can hope to do….

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest Carole, Mark,Theresa, & Richy
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

The *only* duly authorized Computer Curmudgeon.

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

Dozer


À bientôt, mon cherí….


					

Our annual pre-apocalypse sale….

Ffolkes,

“It is impossible to get anywhere without sinning against reason.”

~~ Albert Einstein ~~

mars_gallery_habitat_1

Artist’s rendition of Mars One Habitat: Image from Space.com


Pleasant morning distractions finished, I sit to write, after a two-day hiatus…. The lay-off, while necessary, and fairly successful in terms of meeting goals set, was, nonetheless, too long for my sanity. But I’ll not regale y’all with any of the internal indications which complicate matters; instead, I’ll just say, it’s done for now, and we can go on…. It’s no doubt for the best, anyway…. Y’all wouldn’t be either thrilled, or particularly enchanted, by what I’ve put myself through, so, we’ll leave it all where it belongs, in the past….

Since I shan’t be talking about my time off, what can I find to say to get us started? Well, your guess, in this case, as in many in the past, is as good as mine. I suppose I AM in charge, nominally, but, I think it’s obvious that has never made much of a dent in Reality’s attention; if it had, you’d see a lot less dithering and angst displayed here. I wonder what might happen if I…. no, better not. Last time I tried that, I fell into the royal “we” mode, babbling about our opinions, our clothing, and our royal prerogatives until everyone was doubtlessly sick of it. It took me three days to clean it out of my style….

Ah well, I suppose none of it matters now. We’re here, in a new Pearl, with a full tank of gas, and several new oyster beds to explore…. Since I can’t think of anything else to bore you with here, I guess we can bring this to a halting stop, counting our blessings to have made it this far without any explosions…. Tough to do with the pressure gauge running so high, so, we’ll be thankful, while we’re diving, okay?…. Okay….

Shall we Pearl?

“That which does not kill us, makes us stronger.” — Sun Tzu, The Art of War

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carlos_santana_fond_ecran

Image from ravepad.com via Google stock images


Whenever I think of the world’s best music, ALL of this man’s work must be included…. I listened to this concert, to make sure it was good enough to put here…. I won’t ever forget again just how much genius he displays when playing; he is, truly, one of the finest musicians ever to share his inner vision with the world….. I give you, the One, the Only, Carlos….

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Carlos Santana

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https://youtu.be/48z01HxVtjA

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le penseur-rodin

Le Penseur ~~ The Thinker

Auguste Rodin ~~ Image from The Rodin Museum Website


A small discourse from a couple years ago, since I didn’t write ANYTHING while gone…. I’ll get to it…. For now, this will do….

From 2/25/2013:

“I used to think it was awful that life was so unfair.  Then I thought, wouldn’t it be much worse if life were fair, and all the terrible things that happen to us come because we actually deserve them?  So, now I take great comfort in the general hostility and unfairness of the universe.”– Marcus, Babylon 5

Marcus brings up an interesting point here, when he talks of the general hostility of the universe. I don’t think he quite has a handle on the actual shape of Reality, though; in his desire to avoid responsibility for his own cupidity, he casts the universe as the villain in his play. Our universe isn’t hostile to us, as he would like to think. Unfair? Yes. Hostile? No…. The universe really doesn’t give a crap about us, one way or another. Things seem unfair, not because they are stacked against us, but, rather, because they are not stacked in our favor, a slight but distinct difference…..

Reality plays no favorites, beyond a tendency to allow itself to be adjusted by those who have an understanding of how it works, without granting them any dispensation, but rather rewarding their cleverness and wit. Those who believe the universe is out to get them are defenseless against the trials and tribulations that are a natural part of living, because they begin from an attitude of helplessness. Those who at least have the confidence to act in their own behalf, to stand up against the demands of Fate, are much more able to achieve their goals, than anyone who allows Reality to push them wherever they end up, without any direction made by choice…..

Thus, it becomes clear, courage, as well as knowledge, is necessary to the ability to confront Reality on its own terms. Not only is it necessary to pay attention to the way the universe works, seeking to learn how it interacts among all its parts, but, ’tis necessary to have the courage to act on what is known, according to what the person believes to be right, in a moral sense. Of course, the universe doesn’t care one way or another if we are moral; it rewards those who act out of immorality as well, if they are bold enough to act. We just feel better about ourselves if we act from right thought, making it easier for others to do the same. Acting immorally only benefits the one who is doing the acting…..

It should be noted, cowardice is also rewarded by the universe; the rewards aren’t very palatable, seeing our every wish denied, our every act dismissed, as incompetent, illegal, or just plain dumb….. Lack of courage, along with lack of knowledge thus become their own rewards, thereby allowing the person’s misguided views about reality lead them into issue after issue of conflict with the rest of reality. In this way, they continually reinforce their own misapprehensions, and  the universe is out to get them, and everyone else…. This, in spite of the fact that they are looking at, and dealing with, the same Reality as everyone else, who don’t all seem to have the same problem…. Instead of giving them a clue that maybe they should do things differently, they merely assume that the other people have cheated them somehow…. because that is what they would do….

It’s really too bad in some ways, that so large a percentage of humanity is so lacking in courage and wit as to find the view stated above to be congruent with their own view of the way the universe operates; it’s part of what makes it so easy for those in the BRC and the 1% to control them, and to pull the wool over their eyes. These folks are so convinced of their own helplessness in the face of all they don’t understand, they will latch onto almost anything someone tells them, if it soothes their fears, and gives them someone or something other than themselves to blame for their misfortunes…. Sad, but true, and a perfect description of what has transpired in society for several thousand years now, as the BRC keeps the majority of humanity in the proverbial dark about what is true, and what is real….. They’ve had a lot of practice, and they’re very good at it….

But, then, it isn’t hard to control someone who is brainwashed to believe that it is the way reality is, so I can’t say it is due to any particularly large degree of wit or talent that allows them to do so…. It is more that the folks who they control are so stupid, they ask to be controlled, because they can’t, and more importantly, won’t, trust themselves to do it….. Sad, but true….

At his point in this narrative, I am becoming a bit enraged, a not uncommon reaction to a rant about the BRC and the 1%…. Heck, this time, I didn’t even have to mention the papists or preachers who are their shock troops, on the front lines of the brainwashing process, in order to get upset and angry over their machinations…. until now. My rage is growing, as it always tends to do when I start to rant on this subject, and I’m not ready to deal with the consequences of letting it get any bigger right now…. too much other stuff to get to today. But, just let me say this…..

Those in our society who deliberately control others for their own benefit are my enemies. I believe them to be responsible for virtually ALL of the social ills we have, as well as the global and environmental issues that are threatening our very survival as a species. They are, for their own personal benefit, hoarding the resources of the planet, and refusing to share them with the remainder of humanity, all because they can, and they want to. The welfare of others is of no concern to them, so they automatically become my foes, in my battle to try to make a world my children, and grandchild, can have the opportunity to live a full and complete life of their own, without being oppressed and controlled by assholes who don’t give a shit about anyone but themselves….. As my old martial arts instructor used to say…. “Fuck ’em….. hard.”…..

— “Bother!”, said Pooh, as he dropped his bombs.

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lao

   

This one just seems to fit here….

Seeing is Conducive to Belief

Folly sits so comfortably upon my fevered brow
one would easily believe that I would know how
to look at Life with a jaded, weary eye
seeing enough, and more, to know Why.

Such seems the case, as I will it to be,
an open book of a face, it looks so like me;
what’s known to be so, needs no close attention
familiar sights require no minding, nor mention.

The eye is drawn at once to the stark and new,
and sent back to sleep by successful review.
Once we find evidence we feel we understand,
curiosity languishes, dismissed at command.

Ancient sages knew the insidious value of illusion,
preachers and pundits know the power of confusion.
Each pair of eyes contains its own point of reference,
each mind sets its own standards of preference.

Seeing is believing, for those who live in thrall,
accepting what is perceive is all they ever recall.
Unknown to them, reality follows another set of rules,
Deeper, more dangerous, and no place for fools.

~~ gigoid ~~


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Scottish eve- Irish morn

    Today’s final, old-school pearl is as fresh, and as classical a pearl you’ll ever see. Well, fresh when created, anyway. Let it be enough to know, it’s all new, to me, and y’all, so, y’all should likely pay close attention. This one’s about life, but, not exactly from the viewpoint to which we’re all accustomed. I can’t say exactly what my subconscious mind was up to, but, it seems to work just fine…. I’ll let it percolate, as should you, to let it bring whatever piece/peace there may be to perceive into focus….

“Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it.” — Confucius

“Iron rusts from disuse; water loses its purity from stagnation and in cold weather becomes frozen; even so does inaction sap the vigors of the mind.” — Leonardo da Vinci

“I like a bit of a mongrel myself, whether it’s a man or a dog; they’re the best for every day.” — George Bernard Shaw  1856-1950, Misalliance [1910], episode I

“Like jug, like lid” — Ingrained Serbian Proverb

“He who dies with the most FRIENDS wins.” — Smart Bee

“The important thing is this: To be able at any moment to sacrifice what we are for what we could become.” — Charles DuBois

“What I like is when you’re looking and thinking and looking and thinking…  and suddenly you wake up.” — Hobbes

“Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn’t go away.” — Philip K. Dick

“How could the drops of water know themselves to be a river? Yet the river flows on.” — Antoine de Saint-Exupery

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It feels pretty good to be back; I hope the results justify the process, and the break taken. If not, well, we do get another chance tomorrow, don’t we? Or, rather, don’t I? I suppose, in this case, “we” isn’t all that inappropriate, as I continue to drag y’all along with me while I pursue my personal folly…. Ah well, it could be worse, I suppose…. I could have left out all the artwork…. think how boring THAT would be….. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes…. fair warning….

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest Carole, Mark,Theresa, & Richy
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

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

Featured image


À bientôt, mon cherí….


					

And another one bites the dust, dubiously….

Ffolkes,

“Life is the sum of all your choices.”

~~ Albert Camus ~~

It might look like as spoked wheel or even a "Chakram" circular weapon wielded by television's fictional warrior Xena, but this ringed galaxy is actually a vast place of stellar life. A newly released image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows the ga
NGC 1291, through NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope

Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech


The Beatles first major international hit song was “I Wanna Hold Your Hand”, with Paul belting out the high notes in that pure Scottish tenor, as yet untrained to any great degree, but, showing the promise of his later efforts. That song came out in 1963, before my birthday, so I was still 12 years old…. A few years later, they released another song, about aging, from the point of view of a twenty-something, titled, “When I’m 64”. That song became one of their biggest hits, off one of their best selling albums, and to this day remains an iconic number, that McCartney still plays at his concerts, now and then….

A few days ago, I explained its relevance, but, my site hasn’t had a lot of traffic lately, so I’ll reiterate for those who’ve been avoiding my incredibly long rants, or have been otherwise busily occupied…. Today is my 64th birthday. I had hoped to have a good day, but, it isn’t looking promising at this point. Without going into tedious details, let it suffice to say I’ll be continuing my battle with an incredibly huge, incredibly evil HMO corporation…. They’ve won the last couple of battles, thanks to some support from their equally evil co-conspirators against the public good, to wit: the government….

Both of them are working at their usual stand, doing all they can to make life less comfortable, and much less profitable for the public, while simultaneously continuing to rip off every penny they can from the public treasury, and the pockets of their so-called “members”, with their selfish padding of every salable item they offer as a ‘service’…. Really? Each tissue one uses in a hospital stay is worth $12 a box? A pill taken by a patient costs $2 or more EACH, when it is impossible for the cost of production to exceed a percentage of ONE PENNY…. Those are typical price points in the healthcare field, and are NOT an exaggeration, so, they are making a profit, hand over fist, on everything they charge for, an endless list….

I see I have indulged myself already, by making a good start on a rant here in the intro, as is my bad habit…. In the interests of efficiency, we’ll call that an intro, but, we won’t be proud of it, okay? I AM trying to rant here less often, but, there are so many targets in our world, they seem to jump up while I’m writing, to insist on being discussed, or included in the day’s subject matter listings, with such piteous expressions of sincerity and purpose, I can’t resist…. Ah well, at least it brought us to this point, where we may do this…. Hang on tight….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“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

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As mentioned, it’s my birthday, so, today’s selection is a nod to my status as a hippie, since the age of seventeen, when I went off to college at UC Berkeley, where I found a city full of like-minded young, inquiring minds…. This band, if any musical group could be said to do so, epitomized the ambiance and philosophy of the time….. Enjoy, and especially enjoy some of the concerts listed on the same page you find this sound track…. When you learn to ignore the occasional miscue in tuning of guitars, and the weak voices of young artists still reaching for their potential, you can see, and hear, the improvisational genius  that was this band’s legacy….. Abondanza!

The Grateful Dead: American Beauty – Full Album


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Since it’s a special day for me, I don’t much feel like putting myself into ranting mode, though, if the intro is any indication, it wouldn’t be too difficult to get there in my head…. But, let’s do this instead…. Nearly a couple years ago, I wrote some pretty good rants, one of which I will reproduce this morning, as the subject matter, i.e., Sun Tzu’s Art of War, has been much on my mind of late, due to my ongoing battles with HMO organizations… Rather than work myself up this morning, here is a good sublimation to fill in this section…. As most of my rants are, it is still very relevant to today’s issues in our society…. or, what passes for society amongst the humans on this planet….

From 1/29/2013:

In difficult ground, press on;
In encircled ground, devise stratagems;
In death ground, fight.

~~ Sun Tzu, The Art of War (circa 400 B.C.) ~~


The Art of War is still considered by military experts to be one of the definitive books on warfare and strategy, after more than 2000 years. I’m not certain, but would certainly be surprised if it is not still used as a reference at West Point, Annapolis, The Citadel, and the Air Force Academy in classes on tactics and strategy in battle, and in peace time. In the book, which is actually quite short, Sun Tzu gives the basic tenets for success in war, and was so perfectly correct that it remains valid today, even though the landscape of war has grown much larger, and more complex. The issues that can decide victory or defeat remain the same……

One of the most surprising features of the book is the idea that Sun Tzu presents regarding the perfect warrior. In his mind, warriors came in a number of types, each of which required a different method of leadership. The surprise lies in his choice of the type of warrior that he considers to be the most valuable; oddly enough, on the surface he chose… the Spy…..

Not the weapons master, not the brilliant tactician, not the engineer… the spy. According to Sun Tzu, a properly trained and experienced agent provocateur was, by far, the most valuable type of warrior, for, with the proper application of truth and lies, and the correct timing, battles might be won without loss of life or property, or with a minimum of effort, due to the efforts before the battle by the spy. This choice indicates that Sun Tzu recognized the true battle that is waging at all times when people interact with each other…. the battle between truth and lies…..

We see this battle raging in our own society every day, as the politicians vie with each other to see which one can get the furthest from the truth and still convince people they aren’t full of shit. When we see priests telling us that we aren’t the masters of our own bodies or minds, and expect us to not even ask why, we are witnessing the constant struggle for control of our minds… and our pocketbooks…. The former, of course, will always lead to the latter, and you can bet your booties that it is the pocketbooks that the preachers and politicians are concerned with, not just our minds, or our souls….. You betcha, compadre…

She was a wight, if ever such wight were,–
Des. To do what?
Iago. To suckle fools and chronicle small beer.
Des. O most lame and impotent conclusion!

~~ William Shakespeare (1564-1616), Othello — Act ii, Sc. 1 ~~


Normally, or as close as we get to normally, I wouldn’t use a Shakespeare quote, and this one probably shows why, very well… I can’t for the life of me figure out what the hell any of it means, but the last line struck home for this discussion… Before what I am saying reaches the point where the last line might apply, I will refer you to the book itself…..  The Art of War, by Sun Tzu;  copies of it are available at any bookstore, and probably online in a number of places.

It is a fairly quick read, (though there are points that do require some thought and pondering), being less than a hundred pages in most of the versions I’ve seen. As I said above, it’s pretty simply written, but covers all that is needed to get his point across, which has to do with winning, not just at war, but in life. As with many things in Chinese culture, there is more to the subject than may be apparent on first view, and it is worth the time to look more deeply into what Sun Tzu has told us….

But war ‘s a game which were their subjects wise
Kings would not play at.

~~ William Cowper (1731-1800)  ~~

~~The Task, Book v, The Winter Morning Walk, Line 187 ~~


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While perusing old Pearls to find material for today, this came up, a poem which fits today’s general theme too perfectly to resist….

From 2/7/2013:

Of late, I’ve been writing quite a bit on aging, and it’s effect on me…  an occupational hazard, I suppose, for us retirees. Last night, I was reading some WordPress blogs, and was introduced to this Australian contemporary poet, David Lewis Paget. In looking through his poems on PoemHunter.com, I found this one, which speaks very eloquently of this period of life, and beyond, and I’m happy to include it here as part of the ongoing discussion…. It’s a bit long, but worth it…. Enjoy!….

Age Rage

I was wandering through the Nursing Home
In the town of Morton Rise,
Seeking an old and weathered face
That I’d known in another guise,
For Richard Spratt was my father’s friend
That I hadn’t seen for years,
I was going to let him know his friend
Had taken a turn for the worse.

The eyes that stared from the armchairs there
Were blank, and devoid of pain,
They’d taken the pills that dulled them down
So they wouldn’t be restrained,
The nurses treated them all as fools
This gross humanity,
Whose only sin was they’d given in
To age, and infirmity.

It was all so very depressing, I
Imagined my future there,
Staring in immobility
From the prison of one of their chairs,
Waiting my turn to be spoon-fed
By a very impatient nurse,
Who shovelled the food all over my chin
As I sat, and inwardly cursed.

I wandered the home there, room by room
In search of his friendly face,
This Richard Spratt in a cricketer’s hat
I remembered from Ambergate,
He’d batted a decent fifty, while
My father polished the ball,
And took five wickets alone that day
In his bowling, over all.

It was nigh on forty years before
That I’d watched them play as a child,
Out on the green at Ambergate
With the weather, warm and mild,
But the years dismay as they pass away
And my father grew so old,
Now he lay in bed in a kind of dread
As the bell of his lifetime tolled.

I said that I’d find his friend for him
And let him know, at the last,
That he was remembered, thick and thin
For a friendship, forged in the past,
There were days when they both had sunny skies
And met each day with a grin,
But time drew shrouds like storm-filled clouds
And the end was looking grim.

I heard a shout from a private room
And went to investigate,
Quite a commotion in the gloom,
I hoped I wasn’t too late,
And there was a nurse stood over him
In a wheelchair, Richard Spratt,
He’d thrown his meds all over the room
And sat in his cricketer’s hat.

‘You know what to do with your pills, you witch, ‘
He shouted, and turned to see
Just who was stood in the doorway, I
Was grinning from ear to ear,
‘Well I’ll be… You can get out of here! ‘
He said to the wayward nurse,
Who said, ‘If you’re going to be like that…’
And left the room, with a curse.

I told the news of my father then
And I swear, he sat and cried,
Just a couple of tears escaped
That he hid, he still had pride,
‘Life is a trail of sorrow, son,
But we’re all on the same long train,
Your dad and I in the tunnel, while
Your carriage is still on the plain.’

‘What do you value of life the most? ‘
I saw the pain in his eyes,
‘Youth was that great and precious thing
That with age, you realise!
I’d give it all for an hour to spend
In the glow of my lady’s eyes,
The touch of her skin and a hint of sin
But the thing that we love, it dies! ‘

‘I’ve often thought of those balmy days
On the green in our cricket whites,
And think I hear the crack of the ball
On the willow of sweet delight,
I remember your father’s terse ‘Howzat! ‘
When he scattered another’s bails,
Now I sit in this prisoning wheelchair, here
And all I can hear are wails.’

‘Wails from the ones who want to die,
Wails that they want to live,
The future is lost to the best of us
We have but the past to give.
You’d like to know how I feel right now,
Like a leopard, caught in a cage,
If only I could be young once more…
But all that I feel is rage!’

David Lewis Paget 

4 October 2012

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Other than the intro and closing sections, this is the freshest part of today’s Pearl…. It’s an abstruse little group, commenting, it seems, once again, on the vagaries and idiosyncrasies that occur as part of being human, focusing, as always, on how live a full life, in an ethical fashion that preserves honor, rather than destroying it….

“A man’s true wealth is the good he does in the world.” — Mohammed (570-632 A.D.)

“One cannot play chess if one becomes aware of the pieces as living souls and of the fact that the Whites and the Blacks have more in common with each other than with the players. Suddenly one loses all interest in who will be champion.” — Anatol Rapoport

“… denn da ist keine Stelle, die dich nicht sieht. Du musst dein Leben andern.” ~~ (… for there is no place that does not see you. You must change your life.) — Rainer Maria Rilke, “Archaic Torso of Apollo”

“Nobody does good to man with impunity.” — Auguste Rodin (1840-1917)

“A man’s first care should be to avoid the reproaches of his own heart, his next to escape the censures of the world.” — English Proverb

“Why, then, do you walk as if you had swallowed a ramrod?” — Epictetus (c. 60 AD) — Discourses, Book i, Chap. xxi

I have known noble ones who lost their highest hope,
and then they disparaged all high hopes.
They lived shamelessly in temporary pleasures,
and hardly had an aim beyond the day.
“Spirit is also voluptuousness,” they said.
Then they broke the wings of their spirit;
it now creeps about, and defiles whatever it gnaws at.
Once they thought of becoming heroes,
but they have become sensualists.
A trouble and a terror is the hero to them.
By my love and hope, I implore you:
do not cast away the hero in your soul.
Maintain holy your highest hope.
Thus spoke Zarathustra.

~~ Friedrich Nietzsche, “Thus Spoke Zarathustra” ~~


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

I have yet to go back over this, to see how it turned out…. I will say this, though…. I’m pretty sure it isn’t too bad, and is certainly more than I intended when I began today…. In any case, it’s done, so, I’ll get it posted, then go see if I can find some kind of mischief to get into that will help me feel a bit younger, if only for a short time….. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes…. I have high hopes of that, anyway….. Maybe I can find that hero in my soul….

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

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

Kowabunga!


À bientôt, mon cherí….