Plastic flowers never grow….

Ffolkes,
Great…. I’ve just discovered that there is a species of spider small enough to live in a laptop computer. As I sat here, gazing at the screen with my usual (for this time in the morning) vacuous stare, a tiny spider-shadow began to lower itself down in front of the screen. I followed its progress, and, lo, it disappeared! The only place for it to have gone is inside the computer…. so now, I have an entirely new universe of things to worry about…..

Like how many of them are in there? Or, are they poisonous to humans? Or, just what are they finding in there to eat? And that thought itself brought in a whole new set of visions, of tiny hordes of livestock infesting my computer, dodging the keys as they get pressed, but otherwise enjoying free reign to wander around in there…. Yikes!

Actually, when I look at the images that my mind provides when I consider this scenario, it reminds me of some of the animated movies that have come out recently. Take some weird, micro-sized, cute, witty, cheerful creatures, put them in some magnificently odd and beautiful landscapes; throw in a good screenwriter, and you’ve got a summer hit on your hands. The Adventures of Laptop Louise you could call it…. or not. But, it’s just odd enough to make some money for somebody….

Also interesting it is to note that once again, Life adapts to reality. I’ve always liked and admired spiders; any creature that reduces the number of flies in the world is my kind of creature…. also, having cut my literary teeth on Spider Man and his ilk, I know there is a lot about them to admire, from a physical standpoint.

Fast, strong, often poisonous, and with the ability to make web, a thoroughly competent hunter, with the tools to capture and subdue any prey within its size parameters. Once humans are gone from this plane of existence, I would vote for them as one of the most logical replacements at the top of the food chain….. they have the added bonus of not having too large a brain for their own good…. which has obviously been our problem all along….

Ah well, this kind of meandering will never get me to the end of this Pearl, interesting though it may be. That’s the trouble with being a polymath… it is ALL so damned interesting, I can’t keep from going for it…. So be it. Shall we Pearl?….
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Today we will begin with an old school pearl…. here are a series of pearls, each with its own point. Together, they make a statement of belief, or at least of agreement. That belief is left as an exercise for the Gentle Reader…..

Government is the only known enemy of intelligent life. — Smart Bee

“The only way to combat criminals is by not voting for them.”– Dayton Allen

“To preserve liberty, it is necessary that the whole body of the people possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them.” — Richard Henry Lee
    Okay, so it isn’t completely old school… the old school wouldn’t have had art…. but the message is the same. I’m going to be indulgent, and just state it for you, so you can give it away as needed….. There is NOBODY in the government you can trust. Nobody. They are all just clones of Herr Goerring, though most are not as arrogantly honest about it.

It would behoove all of us to keep a close eye on them, and keep our powder dry….. because, no matter how many times, or how eloquently they tell you, they are NOT interested at all in serving YOUR best interests. The only interests they have are their own, and nothing will change that, no matter how many times they say it…. so fuck ’em, and keep your weapons handy…. unless, of course, you enjoy your slavery…..
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OPERA:  For centuries now, Opera has been the foremost method of humiliation available to the security forces. It began in the late 1600s, when peasant rebels were made to dress up as ridiculously fat people and get up on wooden planks in front of hundreds of their peers and shout the same things over and over and over, to a musical accompaniment.  By the time the French Revolution came rolling along, it was the aristocrats who were forced to the stage to sing, gesticulate wildly and loudly perform plays devised to spread Revolutionary propaganda. Nowadays, Opera has been driven underground, but is still carried out by the perverse, the deviant, and those with very big tits (both men and women), their audiences made up almost exclusively of establishment figures. — Daniel Bowen’s TOXIC CUSTARPEDIA

To my way of looking at stuff, opera falls into the same category as William Shakespeare, i.e., that of the world’s most over-rated entities. Many, many people will gush and spew in praise of opera, proclaiming its beauty, its relevance, its influence on Art, and all sorts of nonsensical claims, none of which are either apparent to me, or believable by any means.

Why should I buy into a centuries old delusion? I don’t care who you are, you can sit there all damn day and night, and tell me that an operatic solo is an expression of beauty and power, and it will still sound as if someone has stepped on a cat’s tail. My ear has near-perfect pitch, and I’ve never heard an opera singer, other than maybe Pavarotti, who could hold a note well. (Pavarotti, it must be noted, does not limit himself to strictly operatic performances….)

The whole idea of it makes me uncomfortable, as the ones who claim to enjoy it seem to accept entire rooms full of people spontaneously bursting into song. In fucking Italian, no less, or German! What is the damn point of that? To make it less understandable? It most certainly does that part well…..

I’ve been to several operas; I try not to formulate opinions without at least checking out that about which I opine. Seeing them in person did nothing to alleviate the sense of ridiculousness I felt, or the pity I felt for those poor singers, in those ridiculous period clothing outfits, prancing around the stage hitting those notes that will shatter crystal. It must be extremely humiliating for them, and some of them actually have pretty good voices. They’d do a lot better to grab a guitar, a microphone, and hit the road….

I guess it all comes back to that sense of elitism that people seem to be so invested in….. People like to think that certain things show class, or culture; opera, symphony, golf, yacht racing, polo, all are activities that are, in the minds of the public, associated with wealth, privilege, and culture. Shakespeare, and a few other literary figures, get added to that list, as the tides of fashion change regularly, influencing what is in vogue. But none of the importance that people place in any of these things is inherent. None of it is really true at all; mankind loves his delusions, and if those delusions are involved with self-image, then the less it approaches reality, the better they like it.

You see, I think they all suspect that if they ever really stopped to look closely at all the things they hold as important, they would find themselves with a fist full of sand, or smoke, which  disappears the moment one opens the fingers wide. They know in their hearts that all of what they are so proud of about themselves is false, so this makes them cling even more strongly to the delusion they are not fools. Unfortunately for them, the universe knows already….

Shakespeare isn’t all that good; I find most of his work to be heavy, obscure, and just not very much fun to watch or read. Opera is worse, as once one has sat down to listen, it is impolite to get up and leave, which has been my impulse in the first few minutes of each one I’ve attended. Maybe it’s just me, but I’m just not impressed at how loud, or how high a singer can sing. There has to be something to connect to for the average Joe, something to which they can relate, and the opera I’ve heard seldom comes close….. So, next time somebody tells you how much they enjoyed the opera, take a close look at their level of sanity, because they are definitely delusional…..
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Couplets on Wit
I
But our Great Turks in wit must reign alone
And ill can bear a Brother on the Throne.

II
Wit is like faith by such warm Fools profest
Who to be saved by one, must damn the rest.

III
Some who grow dull religious strait commence
And gain in morals what they lose in sence.

IV
Wits starve as useless to a Common weal
While Fools have places purely for their Zea.

V
Now wits gain praise by copying other wits
As one Hog lives on what another sh—.

VI
Wou’d you your writings to some Palates fit
Purged all you verses from the sin of wit
For authors now are so conceited grown
They praise no works but what are like their own.

Alexander Pope

Not your average classical poet, was he?….. No comments, just enjoy….
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I can’t consider it cheating when it takes this much out of me. I have a multitude of stuff to do today in the Big Blue Room, so I’d best be getting to it. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you….


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

gigoid

Dozer

Kowabunga!

Even sliced thin, it won’t fit….

Ffolkes,
It probably seems unfair to blame it all on Murphy. Statistics alone says that not everything can be traced back to his malign influence on events… but you know what? Statistics can be made to lie at the slightest manipulation, and will believe whatever they’re told to believe, just as they can be made to show whatever one wishes. And it is hard to deny Murphy’s presence when his hand prints are all over the events in question…..

“There are two kinds of statistics, the kind you look up and the kind you make up.” — Rex Stout, mystery writer

Rather than go into a litany of how the interfering butt head has messed with me today, I’m going to try to sublimate my anger at him and his machinations into writing…. anything. If it takes my mind off how seriously f__ed I am due to his efforts, then it will do for my purposes. Trouble is, when I am awakened at ONE AM to deal with the crap he saddled me with, my creative senses tend to be a bit dull, and subject matter is shall we say, not jumping up, waving its hand, and yelling “Me, Me! Write about me!”  More’s the pity….

I suppose the best idea is to go diving for pearls…. the search itself can be soothing, as long as the pearls aren’t playing hide and seek with me…. ah well, everything’s a risk, isn’t it?  Shall we Pearl?…..
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“If one is master of one thing and understands one thing well, one has at the same time, insight into and understanding of many things.” — Vincent Van Gogh

Kung Fu…. The Chinese words are believed by most Westerners to refer to martial arts, and they do. The words, however, are applicable to much more than merely martial arts; they refer to the mastering of any art or skill. A master chef has, or shows, or is, kung fu when they engage in the production of beautiful delicious meals. A master painter has kung fu when he puts his paints to canvas, as does a master pianist, or violinist when they allow the music to soar. The words describe the state of excellence that is achieved by hard work over a long time; it cannot be learned in a day, or a week, or even a year. Basic skills must be learned by rote until they are habit; these build upon each other to become mastery.

Vincent Van Gogh had strong kung fu as a painter; I’ve seen the exhibit of his work that sometimes travels from its home at the Louvre in Paris. It was displayed in San Francisco in 1968 at the De Young Museum, and I was fortunate enough to be able to see it while it was there. It is difficult to describe the effect his paintings had on me; I had never before seen any of the classical genius’ works, and it was very enlightening.

His technique, of using thick paints and bold hard strokes, had to be viewed at the correct distance, but when it was, the visions he created were astounding, almost alive in their intensity and connection with reality. One of his self-portraits, painted from looking in a mirror on a small canvass, had the most piercing blue eyes I’ve ever seen, eyes that were alive, and stared right into the soul of the observer…..

Herr Van Gogh must also have been a very deep thinker, as this is not a common insight; it is a very subtle point, and often overlooked by Western philosophers, at least to my knowledge. It is nice to know that excellence in one area does not limit one to showing such talent in only that area.

It gives me a little hope for the continued existence of mankind, even if that is not rational; but hope springs eternal, and if East and West can combine their understanding of reality enough to become commonly accepted, then we may yet find our way back to a path that won’t end up killing us…. Chances are slim, but not zero….
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Boy, now, there’s some good advice from Dr. Freud, which can’t always be said with any degree of truth. The good doctor was an intelligent man, no doubt, but had his head pretty far up his ass on a lot of fronts. This, however, hits the nail right on the head, and is something I find it useful to say to myself each morning before reading the news, just in case that Westbrook Baptist church or Mitt Romney have released some statement that sets a new standard of ignorance to affront the rest of us. It helps to keep it in perspective…. and keeps me personally from biting the first real person with whom I come into contact, just to release the pressure that reading that stuff can create….

It’s gotten so I have to literally walk away from some articles, to keep from banging my fists and/or forehead against the keyboard, which, though cathartic, tends to be hard on the keys. Even music doesn’t help, when I read some of the stuff that the minister and congregation of the Westbrook church put on their signs all over the country where they travel to spread their hatred and bigotry. Not even Mozart, and he can usually cut through almost any negativity….. And now that Mitt is the official Republican Main Squeeze, I keep expecting new clueless statements to be coming out any time…. Something to look forward to, in a perverted sort of way….

Quem metuunt, oderunt. (They hate whom they fear.) — Ennius (239-169 BC)

Ah well, after over 55 years of reading, and/or listening to, and watching, the stuff that goes into American newspapers and programs, I should know better than to get too emotionally involved in it all. I distinctly remember, at the age of about four or five, or so, lying on a couch somewhere, watching the Republican National Convention on TV, (I LIKE IKE!), and thinking to myself, “Boy this is really stupid and boring….”. That should have been a warning of what was to come in the future…..

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Her Reply

IF all the world and love were young,
And truth in every shepherd’s tongue,
These pretty pleasures might me move
To live with thee and be thy Love.

But Time drives flocks from field to fold;
When rivers rage and rocks grow cold;
And Philomel becometh dumb;
The rest complains of cares to come.

The flowers do fade, and wanton fields
To wayward Winter reckoning yields:
A honey tongue, a heart of gall,
Is fancy’s spring, but sorrow’s fall.

Thy gowns, thy shoes, thy beds of roses,
Thy cap, thy kirtle, and thy posies,
Soon break, soon wither–soon forgotten,
In folly ripe, in reason rotten.

Thy belt of straw and ivy-buds,
Thy coral clasps and amber studs,–
All these in me no means can move
To come to thee and be thy Love.

But could youth last, and love still breed,
Had joys no date, nor age no need,
Then these delights my mind might move
To live with thee and be thy Love.

Sir Walter Raleigh

Okay, so I’m a romantic… so sue me….   🙂   Enjoy!
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Murphy seems to be laying low for a little while, so I’m going to take advantage of that, and go get some stuff done out in the Big Blue Room…. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you….


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

gigoid

Kowabunga!

Flats of unwarranted pebbles slid home….

Ffolkes,
I’m sorry…were the voices in my head bothering you? They bother me sometimes, but I’ve learned to ignore them, mostly, and I tend to forget that others might not like it either. Since I killed my doctor and stopped taking the medications, I’ve felt MUCH better! If they get to be too much, just let me know, and I’ll blow a few of them away; it quiets the rest of them down for a while….

Soon, I’m sure, the pressure on my head will abate…. when change is ubiquitous, one need merely to wait for all things to pass with patience, and all we desire will come to us. And if not, well, we can always run amok. Oh wait, that one is on hold…. that’s right, I signed an agreement not to kill anyone else this month; my lawyer is still recovering from my last outburst. It took all he had to get the insanity plea accepted, and having to do this on a regular basis seems to be affecting his sanity a bit; as an ex-psychiatric technician, I can testify that, despite all medical opinions to the contrary, mental illness is contagious….

“There’s nothing on my mind that couldn’t be expressed by a long insane outburst of hysterical rage.” — Ashleigh Brilliant

But, don’t worry, it can’t be passed through the computer screen, so y’all are perfectly safe. Of course, safe is a relative term, especially when dealing with what I generally write about. I’ve purposely been peppering my work with buzz words for the NSA to find, words like terrorism, or war, or government flunkies, stuff like that. I’m sure that I’ve been on their radar now for a while; it’s kind of fun, trying to see just how much I can get away with saying before they come to have a word with me about it…. It must be the shit-disturber in me….

Ah well, I suppose we should get on with the business of the day…. shall we Pearl?…. Let’s do….
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But words are things, and a small drop of ink,
Falling like dew upon a thought, produces
That which makes thousands, perhaps millions, think.
— Lord Byron (1788-1824) — Don Juan, Canto iii, Stanza 88

If I could use words like this, then what I produce could conceivably influence millions of folks, for certain. But we all need to know, and observe, our limitations as an artist. Even though a big part of creating something worthwhile consists of going beyond those limits, it is still good to know when to stop, too. I can write a decent haiku, but a poem such as above seems to be beyond my capability. I’ve tried, goodness knows….

I have notebooks full of passionate, complex, really bad poetry that I created when I was young. Free verse, classical format, rhyming couplets, iambic pentameter, I tried all of it at one time or another. I let it sit for years before going back to read it over, and am forced to admit that not only was it not very good, I couldn’t think of any way to improve it. Ah me, I guess I can’t do everything, much as I like to think so…. SIGH…. You’ll just have to settle for Pearls of Virtual Wisdom….   🙂
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“If a sufficient number of people who wanted to stop war really did gather together, they would first of all begin by making war upon those who disagreed with them.  And it is still more certain that they would make war on people who also want to stop wars but in another way.” — Gurdjieff (1873-1949)

Actually, this is not so much of a predictive statement as an observational one. It certainly matches what I know of much of history, and how little the actual reasons for fighting wars are understood by either those who fight in them, or those who cause them to be fought. Neither of those two groups are mutually inclusive, as well, so the reasons that one group may have, or believe they have, for fighting may be (and probably are…) much different from the other groups reasons, stated or actual.

Now, if I can be any less clear in my meaning, please let me know, because I think that paragraph is pretty obscure….

What I’m trying to say is, the folks who get talked into fighting wars don’t fight for the same reasons as the folks who asked, or told, them to fight. That is because the folks who end up fighting are the honorable, dedicated men (and women) who believe that they are protecting the people they love.

The folks who send them to fight are not as honorable, and their reasons for initiating the conflicts are seldom related to people, but rather to money or power, which is what they love. It is a perverted love, yes, but it is nonetheless the primary motivating factor for those who would have power over others, for money equals power in the reality they inhabit.

Gurdijeff’s statement is, I find, too limited in its scope; it doesn’t account for all the different reasons that people are motivated to fight wars. It is a fair and accurate assessment of what is a likely progression of events if men of little purpose beyond their own prejudices are united in cause, because, hey, humans here, not rational creatures by any means, especially in groups….. But humanity is comprised of more than just these folks, and ALL of the different kinds of people in our species have historically resorted to violent means to settle large disputes. It’s a human thing…. not pretty, but there it is, just like a wart that won’t go away…..

So how does one stop war? Hmm… well, I can’t claim to have the answer to a question that several thousand years of human history has shown to be somewhat hard to solve with any lasting effect. I’ve managed to avoid taking part in the actions that our country has involved itself in in my lifetime, having seen none that I could honestly say was as important to fight as the government was trying to tell me it was. If I’m going to die, it will be for an honorable goal, not for someone’s profit margin….

War isn’t going to stop unless we change the whole structure of our culture, and remove the benefits of one person having power over another. It’s a very deep, subtle, and pretty well impossible change, its success resting as it does on changing human nature…. That hasn’t happened in all of history so far, and I don’t see it happening anytime soon… so we’d best stay alert to avoid the worst of the fallout from whatever happens….

If a lawyer and an IRS agent were both drowning, and you could only save one of them, would you go to lunch or read the paper?– Smart Bee (It’s a subtle connection, but it’s there, trust me….)
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“Anger is a tool, not a master. Anger is meant to be tapped into and drawn upon. Used properly, anger is useful. Sloth, apathy, and despair are the enemy. Anger is not. Anger is our friend. Not a nice friend, not a gentle friend, but a very loyal friend. It will always tell us when we have been betrayed. It will always tell us when we have betrayed ourselves. It will always tell us that it is time to act in our own best interests. Anger is not the action itself. It is action’s invitation.” — Julia Cameron  “The Artist’s Way”

Interesting take, and the secret of the berserker….. who is, after all, a martial artist who has channeled his anger into following the path of the Way. I like this viewpoint in its proactive sense; it doesn’t allow anger to control, but instead assumes control of the anger. It is a tricky proposition, at best, but when learned, can be very, very effective as a tool in dealing with outbreaks of violence not of our choosing, which I would hope would be all of them…..  😉

During my years of studying martial arts, I was taught to practice this kind of control. In competition fighting, there are many tricks one can use to get the opponent to make a mistake; one of the most effective is to do something that angers the opponent. In most folks, anger causes the reasoning part of the mind to shut down; actions, or, more accurately, reactions, that occur in response to anger are impulsive, spur-of-the-moment decisions for the most part, and as such, do not always make the best choice of strategy or tactics. If one can maintain one’s own sense of equilibrium in the midst of a physical battle, it becomes a distinct advantage, as the calm person is more capable of processing new information and making more rapid adjustments to meet the needs of the moment.

But, even if one becomes infused with anger, it CAN be channeled constructively, and in truth, when acting under its influence, using proper regulation, it can increase speed, strength, and power by a large factor. If not used correctly, it still adds strength, but the strength is usually misdirected, thus reducing its effectiveness. But, when correctly channeled, one enters the “berserker” state, almost robotic in its precision, and becomes a most formidable weapon of destruction. It’s quite exhilarating, actually….

It has its dangers, as well…. allowing anger to flow completely is accompanied by a release of adrenaline into the blood stream. Adrenaline is a very powerful hormone, affecting every system in the body in some way, and prolonged use of it is deleterious in a number of ways…. In my own case, due to the work I did for many years, and the number of times I had to enter berserker mode, it produced Post Traumatic Stress Dysfunction, with all its attendant wonders…. such a joy…..

So, while this is a healthy attitude to take about one’s own anger, it is not a solution that is without risk. Anger is a volatile emotion, and like any explosive substance, it should be handled with care……

“If you don’t deal with anger, it will deal with you.” — Will Limon
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“If I read a book (and) it makes my whole body so cold no fire can warm me, I know that is poetry.” — Emily Dickinson

Once again, my dive for pearls is coming up short for poetry…. I’ll have to cheat…. but will do so with an appropriate tip of the hat to current events…. at least, current to me….

Pain has an element of blank;
It cannot recollect
When it began, or if there were
A day when it was not.

It has no future but itself,
Its infinite realms contain
Its past, enlightened to perceive
New periods of pain.
— Emily Dickinson

This is one of my favorite poems from Ms. D. I first read it in high school, but even then it resonated with its insight. Now, of course, it’s as if she could see into my soul, and pluck out my pain to look at like a bug under a microscope…. She must have felt a fair amount of it herself, to achieve such a clear vision of its presence in the spirit of those who have it as constant companion…. No matter, I like it, so it stays….   🙂
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I love this, and it is a perfect ending pearl…. as well, it is a trailer, as it were, for another Pearl, coming later….
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I’m shooting for a bit of variety today, and actually will try to get some productive stuff done in the Big Blue Room. Well, as much as can be accomplished on a weekend anyway…. I also want to mention that I will be posting two Pearls today… The second will be posted after this one has been let fly, and is a departure into another area…. photo pearling…. I hope you enjoy it, as I hope you enjoy this one…. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


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

gigoid

Kowabunga!