Two orders of artificially-flavored, deep-fried, imitation calamari, please….

Ffolkes,

“Since we cannot know all that is to be known of everything,

we ought to know a little about everything.”

~~ Blaise Pascal ~~

Irish coast

    Ah, yes! I love the smell of artificial, imitation, deep-fried ANYTHING! I AM, after all, a trained consumer….

Okay, no ranting in the intro, bozoid one. Hie, there, ffolkes. In case it isn’t clear by now, I’m in a Zippy mood. While not a frequent occurrence, we can never tell quite what that will mean, in the final analysis; I’ve had it turn out quite well, at times; other times, I wake up in another state, (e.g., Wisconsin, or Sinaloa, in Mexico…. which was, admittedly, way better than Wisconsin….), naked, hung over,  with no idea where I’ve been, how I got there, what I’ve been consuming (the masters won’t like that!…. gotta consume our quota!…), or with whom, or what, I’ve been consorting…. Not the most pleasant mornings, let me tell ya…. Even if nothing else, the stench was tremendous!….

Ah well, so much for tales of my misspent youth; I’m sure we all have a story or two like that to tell, right? No? Oh. Oh, well, I guess it’s all of a piece, what with the state of Reality these days. I must say, it’s looking a bit grim out there in the BBR, ffolkes, and, you know Zippy. He’s a hard one to bring down into a depression, what with his lack of any connections whatsoever to the same reality, for more than five minutes…. I sure wish I could do that! Must be nice to be able to shift from one to another, at the drop of a cliche… Probably plays hell with one’s shoes, though…. And, the spit-bombs! Well! They must drive him, oh, right…. nobody can drive Zippy crazy; he’s been there for years….

Okay, I think that’s most likely enough of that. I’m no Bill Griffith, for sure, though he’s one of my cartoonist heroes…. His connection to the state of Weird is like an internet T-1 connection; a direct line, with all the bandwidth needed, to the entire world of Weird, with lifetime passes to the neighboring worlds of Strange, and Odd…. Truth, in the most incredibly beautiful strange clothing, just flows out of his brain, seemingly without end, saturated in metaphor, truly a coat of many colors, brought to us in technicolor, in no particular order discernible by the mind of Man….

Don’t be surprised if Zippy pops up further down the page today, either. I like to let him have his fun while he’s in charge; it makes him so happy to be able to play with the tri-cornered leadership hat, with its ribbons, and peacock feathers proudly displayed. Plus, he’s always a better tipper when he gets to wear the hat; one time he gave the tarbender a $100 dollar bill, just for saying “hi” to him…. Of course, it was counterfeit, but, all his money is, so nobody minds…. He never guesses, and it’s no sweat for the help to humor him….

Alright, that’s it. I’m out of Zippyisms, for the moment, at least…. I think we’d probably be heading off to the oyster beds now, before this gets away from me, turning into another marathon opening, tiring everyone out before we even get to the video…. Yes, I think that will be the best idea…. In fact, let’s just do that, right NOW….

Shall we Pearl?

“It is easier to stay out than get out.”

~~Mark Twain ~~


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

True to my word, today’s video will be none other than our pal Zippy’s personal page on You Tube. The first link you see is to the page listing all the great places to find Zippy on You Tube. The second link, and the embedded player, are to Episode One of the Zippy Tales, by Zippy’s author, Bill Griffith himself…. Enjoy, ffolkes, it doesn’t get any stranger than this…..

***********************

Zippy the Pinhead

by Bill Griffith

***********************

***********************

***********************


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

A lawyer and a pope died on the same day, and both went to heaven.
When the pope noticed that the lawyer had a larger mansion,
he questioned Saint Peter about the allocation of rewards. 
The justification was “Well, we’ve had 265 popes up here,
but this is the FIRST lawyer!”

~~ True Story ~~

buddah-out-to-lunch_s

    As might be guessed from the opening portion of today’s ranting section, we will not be maintaining any of our customary sobriety; I’m not in the mood for sobriety. Even talking about popes or lawyers would be too much for me, so, we’ll go with something from the archives, a discussion of a less intense nature than our usual bill of faire in this part of the Pearl. Silly, yet completely serious at the same time; I’m not sure what I was thinking, but,  it seems to work… I’ve cleaned it up a little, to get rid of those words getting in the way of the meaning, or cluttering up perfectly good sentences,  formerly a large part of my writing style…. Otherwise, all same same….

From 7/23/2012:

“You govern a kingdom by normal rules;
You fight a war by exceptional moves;
But you win the world by letting alone,
How do I know that this is so?
By what is within me!
The more taboo and inhibitions there are in the world,
The poorer the people become.
The sharper the weapons the people posses,
The greater confusion reigns in the realm.
The more clever and crafty the men,
The oftener strange things happen.
The more articulate the laws and ordinances,
The more robbers and thieves arise.”

 ~~ Tao Teh Ching, #57 ~~


This is obvious. But don’t look at it too carefully, or it becomes unobvious, until you look at it for a long time, when it becomes obvious again. –Smart Bee

The above two pearls were sent to me by Murphy; obviously, I have to write about them. How do I know he sent them? Well, when I was cruising my dB of quotes, the excerpt from the Tao Teh Ching was the very first quote that came into view after opening the program. I debated a discussion, as it is one of the most important of the lessons in that book. But, I decided to go on, to find something a bit more amenable….

I hit the key to bring up the next quote, only to see the ‘sort-of-but-not-quite-zen-koan’ from Smart Bee, come into view….. Obviously, at least, to me, the two were from Murphy, hence their presence here for me to comment upon….. although I don’t know why I should, since Murphy is such an ass. But, knowing him all too well, if I don’t, I’ll pay for it, so…. here we go…

Each of the assertions in the above quote from Lao Tzu’s book is a subtle lesson, designed to teach the reader about the nature of the Tao.  As it says in the very first chapter of the Tao Teh Ching, the Tao that can be named is not the true Tao. To the Occidental mind, this seems to be a contradiction; achieving an understanding requires a loosening of the rigid patterns of thought typical of the western mind. One must learn to hold two seemingly contradictory ideas in their mind simultaneously, to allow the meaning of each to mingle, and blend with the other, until the true nature of Tao is revealed, even though it cannot be touched, or seen, or heard.

This subtle process is difficult for westerners to use, as we tend to think in a straight line, from a to b; to understand the Tao, one must first understand that, to the eastern mind, a IS b. Instead of viewing the world as subject to cause and effect, the eastern way of looking at the world views cause and effect as more flexible, more fluid, less like a stone, more like water. As I said, subtle, but not completely inscrutable…. Okay, maybe a little inscrutable…

And now I know why Murphy sent them to me…. If one considers the second quote, using the lines from the Tao Teh Ching as the subject of discussion, then it IS obvious. But don’t look at it too carefully, or it becomes unobvious, until you look at it for a long time, when it becomes obvious again…..

🙂     Murphy was obviously telling us that, in order to understand the eastern way of thought, use the second quote as the process for examination of the idea, and one can find their way through to an understanding that they formerly could not see….

See, now what was so hard about that?….

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

Closing note from 2015: It seems to me, given my mood today, the proper closing pearl for the above… hmm… Well, whatever the above might be, I think it needs to have our old friend Zippy give us the final word on what we’ve just seen…. But, in looking, I found five good, solid Zippyisms, any one of which would be just right….

So, I’m leaving it up to the Gentle Reader to pick their own…. Here then, are Zippy’s thoughts on today’s discussion, to sum it all up for us… Yes, I know, you don’t have to tell me…. If you feel you must, go ahead, say what you feel in the comment section, when you share your choice for the best ending for today’s ranting section…. If you’re witty enough, I’ll even respond…. Oh, hell, what am I saying? I respond to anything…. go ahead, make my day…

“What UNIVERSE is this, please??” — Zippy the Pinhead

“MMM-MM!!  So THIS is BIO-NEBULATION!” — Zippy the Pinhead

“Kids, don’t gross me off…  “Adventures with MENTAL HYGIENE” can be carried too FAR!” — Zippy the Pinhead

“It’s getting harder and harder to act weird.” — Zippy the Pinhead

That’s for sure…. Finally, my personal favorite….

“Did YOU find a DIGITAL WATCH in YOUR box of VELVEETA?” — Zippy the Pinhead

Hey…. Better than another rant, isn’t it? Especially if you say the last one out loud, with the proper inflection…

I know I’m burnt out; it was the adrenaline, for sure, & there’s still a long road to travel…. Best to take a break now and again, I think… Since I can’t play my guitar here, this will have to do….

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

“I want to read my new poem about pork brains and outer space…”

~~Zippy the Pinhead ~~


Oops…. Actually, that’s not today’s poem. I found it while searching for the group of Zippy’s appropriate closing statements for the section above…. THIS one is today’s offering… finally…. I think it’s appropriately querulous….

I know I’m in the now, if only…..

Oh, there it is again, fiddle faddle;
  Begone, I said, vamoose, skedaddle!
It looked at me as if I were insane:
  Scoffed, it did, filled me with pain.

Where does it come from?
Where does it live?
I’d stick out my thumb,
if I had more to give.

If only, should, would, could it be?
  It went away again, this time free.
It will be back again, this I know;
  or I’m wrong, and it won’t show.

Who cares?
Who hears?
Such goings on wobble the sphere,
I wish it wouldn’t do that here.

I’ve been wrong before…..

~~ gigoid ~~


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

syf roses

Ain’t no time to hate–barely time to wait.

Wo ho what I want to know: where does the time go?

~~ Robert Hunter ~~

~~ “Uncle John’s Band ~~


Today’s final pearl is special, not merely for the Grateful Dead icon and song lyric adorning the space above, a lyric which metaphorically states (how else?) a big piece of my philosophy…. but, because all its parts are concepts which are also a big part of how I look at the world…. Not precisely, but, metaphorically, all say something I believe myself, one way or another… Such as the first; I wasn’t born a cynic, none of us are. But, we humans sure do have a tendency to turn each other into one post haste, if one is at all alert to irony, and/or hypocrisy, and, possesses, as well, a bare minimum of intelligence. The second one, sure, I don’t believe in a God, per se, but, if I did, that’s the way I’d want Him to be… and, so on…. Enjoy!…

Cynics are made, not born.

~~ Max ~~


“I’m not into isms and asms.There isn’t a Catholic moon and a Baptist sun. I know the universal God is universal…. I feel that the same God-force that is the mother and father of the pope is also the mother and father of the loneliest wino on the planet.” — Dick Gregory

“I am never more serious than when I’m joking. It is inaccurate to say that I hate everything. I am strongly in favor of common sense, common honesty, and common decency. This makes me forever ineligible for public office.” — H.L. Mencken

“A physician, after he had felt the pulse of Pausanias, and considered his constitution, saying, “He ails nothing,” “It is because, sir,” he replied, “I use none of your physic.” — Plutarch (46-120 AD) — Of Pausanias the Son of Phistoanax

“It could probably be shown by facts and figures that there is no distinctly native American criminal class except Congress.” — Mark Twain  Following the Equator (1897)

“The first problem for all of us, men and women, is not to learn, but to unlearn.” — Gloria Steinem

“Walking in a forest between two hedges of ferns transfigured by autumn – that is a triumph. What are ovations and applause beside it?” — E.M. Cioran

“An idea that is not dangerous is unworthy of being called an idea at all.” — Oscar Wilde (1854-1900)

“You cling to your own ways and leave mine to me.”

~~ Petrarch ~~


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

“Of harmes two the lesse is for to cheese.”

~~ Geoffrey Chaucer (1328-1400) ~~

~~ Troilus and Creseide, Book ii, Line 470 ~~


You may wonder why this pearl (if that’s what it is….) is here in the closing section…. Well, that’s easy to explain. I came across it a day or so ago when searching for some pearls, to use for a pearl, as part of a Pearl. I know, it’s confusing, but, don’t fret about that now; when I found the damn thing, it didn’t fit in with the one I was working on. In fact, from what I can tell, there isn’t much it WILL fit with….

My problem is this…. Does anyone know what this MEANS? “Of harmes two the lesse is for to cheese.” What the HELL is it? I mean, I know Chaucer’s tales were written in Middle English, which bears little resemblance to modern English, but, most of what he wrote can at least be considered in the same ballpark, where we can puzzle out some meaning. This damn thing came from another galaxy, by the sound of it…. I would use it, just for the lilting sound of it when spoken; it sounds just as if you’ve been cursed at by a drunken Scotsman. But, I can’t seem to figure out anything to go with it, other than something we don’t have, which is a lot of pearls about cheese….

Oh well…. I guess I can’t use ALL of them; it’s just so cute!…. It speaks with such authority; if I knew what the devil it meant, I’d probably believe it, just because it sounds so cool to say… Oh, am I getting strange, again? Okay. We can go now…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes…..

Insert witty closing phrase of your choosing here….

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

dozer3

À bientôt, mon cherí….


		
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YOW! The Zipster said he’d let us sift some of his debris!…

Ffolkes,

In the course of human events, logic and/or intelligent design aren’t included in the blueprints, though there are some among us who pride themselves on having or using both…. Those poor deluded souls are usually the ones struggling the hardest to find either one in themselves…..

Those of us who actually LIVE with those elements, as part of the fabric we have woven, know better than to expect it from the normal run of human; it just isn’t part of their bag of tools, or as some call them, tricks….  Expecting them to show logical behavior is a pointless exercise, because it’s just not in them….

There, I said it…. Now will you leave me be? Oh, hi, ffolkes, come on in…. Don’t mind him, he’s just an iconic force of nature, who forced his way in here to start badgering me about ranting, for some unknown reason, at this ungodly hour of the day…. A PITA, to be sure…. but, I’ve given him what he demanded, a short, pointed statement on the 90% of humanity who reside on the sloped portion of that famous bell curve, upon which humanity’s every characteristic may be described as falling….. Which bell curve? Okay, I’ll tell ya….

In humans, almost every one of the characteristics that describe how our species exists, our species’ characteristics, in terms of the efficacy of our thinking, sort of, can be said to be accurately portrayed by the use of a bell curve, that mathematical model which best matches our nature…. In this model, about 5% of mankind are genius, on one end of the curve, while another 5% exhibit less than normal intelligence, at the other end; in between are the 90%, the bulk of mankind, whose minds are relatively normal…. On a straight-line curve, it would look like this….

— Genius –Talented — Average — Challenged — Stupid —

Obviously, that’s a bit simple, but, it gives y’all the general idea…

Of course, such simplistic models are necessary, to keep the questions to a minimum, and to present such arguments without creating any MORE resentment among those whose level of intelligence is part of that 90% that possesses less than what might be called optimum IQ….

Plus, it’s hard to have any discussion of this, without questions of motivation arising, a process that, once started, has no good ending…. In fact, discussions about this subject tend to be fraught with all kinds of potential to go wrong, thus, they end up creating more misunderstanding than is cleared up…. which, in my haste to find an intro, I forgot…

So, I am going to be a coward, albeit a smart coward, having resolved to drop this whole subject, as one I don’t really want to pursue…. Nothing useful can come of it, so, hey, why not bow to reality? It’s not as if I had so much invested in it that I’m unwilling to give up on the effort, is it?

Nope, cuz, as it is plainly obvious, to me, at least, just how LITTLE interest in finishing it I really had…. I’m not sure why I started in on that in the first place…. I guess the sight of all that blank whiteness threw me off for a minute, fooling me into thinking I needed to be serious, and sober…. Piss on THAT, eh?

In fact, I see by the above that I’ve managed to spew out enough BS to fill up the intro again…. If I didn’t know better, I’d think I’d planned it this way…. Nah! No way that much thought went into this!….. Whatever the case may be, as to motivation, and/or execution, we made it this far, and that, in the final analysis, is all that matters….

Shall we Pearl?….

“Always obey your superiors–if you have any.’ — Mark Twain

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

Having thus given away the whole secret right there, with that quote from Twain, I will now tell you the GOOD news, which is that I’m not up to a rant today; not a fresh one, anyway…. I also don’t feel like spending the time & energy to go find something appropriate in the archives…. In point of fact, I’m feeling altogether lazy, which makes me a bit nervous re: the outcome of this Pearl…. But, I am smothering my fears, as I type, since I’ve decided that there is nothing wrong with being lazy…. Not a thing….

Truth be told, I’m feeling very CAT-like today; I really, really don’t give a shit…..about much of anything. I don’t feel like ranting, or pearling at all, for that matter; it’s only my damned sense of duty that keeps me chained to this desk, with periodic breaks for pain relief measures, until I get this done each day…. I guess today is no exception…. So, to save further issues of any kind from developing, I’m now going for a dive, and I won’t be back until I’ve found a seven-star pearl to fill this section…. Parameters? What parameters? I’m just going to hold a gun to SB’s head until I get what I want….

“Just because it’s hard doesn’t mean it’s worth the effort.” — Goebel’s Law of Useless Difficulty

“It’s good to be just plain happy; it’s a little better to know that you’re happy; but to understand that you’re happy and to know why and how, in what way, because of what concatenation of events or circumstances, and still be happy, be happy in the being and the knowing, well, that is beyond happiness — that is bliss, and if you have any sense you ought to kill yourself on the spot and be done with it.” — Henry Miller, “The Colossus of Maroussi”

“Find time still to be learning somewhat good, and give up being desultory.” — Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (121-180 AD) — Meditations, ii, 7

“All the world’s a stage and most of us are desperately unrehearsed.” — Sean O’Casey

“We get into the habit of living before acquiring the habit of thinking…” — Albert Camus

Cynic, n.: A blackguard whose faulty vision sees things as they are, not as they ought to be.  Hence the custom among the Scythians of plucking out a cynic’s eyes to improve his vision. — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

“In the bigger scheme of things, the universe is not asking us to do something, the universe is asking us to be something. And that’s a whole different thing.” — Lucille Clifton

Not bloody bad for a pick-up-sticks kind of day, eh? That first quote, to my way of thinking, may just be the best definition of modern American politics I’ve ever seen…. Okay, so I’m a cynic, which is okay, because I have no plans to travel anywhere near Scythia….

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

As stated above, my laziness today is legion…. You’ll have to put up with another of my old poems…. In fact, I’m SO lazy today, you get a two-fer, all because I couldn’t work up the energy to decide which one to use…..

Yoda says, “learn to like it, you must, or forever will you lump it…”

I know I’m in the now, if only…..

Oh, there it is again, fiddle faddle;
  Begone, I said, vamoose, skedaddle!
It looked at me as if I were insane:
  Scoffed, it did, filled me with pain.

Where does it come from?
Where does it live?
I’d stick out my thumb,
if I had more to give.

If only, should, would, could it be?
  It went away again, this time free.
It will be back again, this I know;
  or I’m wrong, and it won’t show.

Who cares?
Who hears?
Such goings on wobble the sphere,
I wish it wouldn’t do that here.

I’ve been wrong before…..

~~ gigoid ~~

*****************************************

Intelligent Crimes

The value of wit is often said to cause harm,
for those who think, such is its greatest charm.
The new and the bold cannot be fulfilled
if innovation and change is left unwilled.

Society behaves at its base as a mob
conformity and submission its primary job.
Any sign of rebellion against the mob’s rule
is met with resentment, naming such rebel the fool.

Intellect and talent are looked at askance,
expressing artistry stands nary a chance.
To stand out from the rest of mankind
is fraught with danger, for body and mind.

Often I stand to watch in solemn dismay
as beauty and joy are left by the way,
ignored and reviled by the unwashed masses
who prefer darkness, and acting like asses.

With shouts of derision the normals make known
their fear of intelligence, greater than their own.
They hope to stop all semblance of progress;
for thoughts and ideas, they couldn’t care less.

The world struggles on in spite of all opposition,
managing to maintain its advanced position.
Pulling the foolish along in spite of reluctance,
helping each to learn the survival dance.

Hard though it may be to keep up with the future
genius manages its plans to develop and nurture.
In the final analysis, those who live by reason
enjoy life the most, season to season.

~~ gigoid ~~

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

Today’s final pearl will be of the odd-duck variety, our newest incarnation, complete with link, a great deal of chutzpah, and a five-star old school pearl to make the point of the missing rant…. Here for your reading pleasure is the latest article from Mark Morford, lexicographer and vocabularian extraordinaire, with a very cogent take on the latest example of a corporate sleaze-bucket parading his bigotry in public…. Read this first, then enjoy the pearl that follows, all about assholes like the one who owns the Clippers….

http://blog.sfgate.com/morford/2014/04/29/rich-white-thugs-begone/

“I sense that much of this historic moment is escaping you.” — Brain

“Hit the road, Jack, and don’t you come back no more, no more, no more, no more.” — Ray Charles, and the Raylettes

MYRMIDON, n.  A follower of Achilles — particularly when he didn’t lead. — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

“If the whole human race lay in one grave, the epitaph on its headstone might well be: `It seemed like a good idea at the time.'” — Rebecca West

Angels and ministers of grace, defend us!
Be thou a spirit of health or goblin damn’d,
Bring with thee airs from heaven or blasts from hell,
Be thy intents wicked or charitable,
Thou comest in such a questionable shape
That I will speak to thee: I ‘ll call thee Hamlet,
King, father, royal Dane: O, answer me!
Let me not burst in ignorance, but tell
Why thy canonized bones, hearsed in death,
Have burst their cerements; why the sepulchre,
Wherein we saw thee quietly inurn’d,
Hath oped his ponderous and marble jaws
To cast thee up again. What may this mean,
That thou, dead corpse, again in complete steel
Revisit’st thus the glimpses of the moon,
Making night hideous,
So horridly to shake our disposition
With thoughts beyond the reaches of our souls?

— William Shakespeare (1564-1616), Hamlet — Act i, Sc. 4

I know this one doesn’t SEEM very vituperative, at first glance; as well, it MAY just be a bit TOO esoteric for even my Gentle Readers, who should be used to me by now…. However, it gave me a chance to use what I believe to be Will’s BEST piece of work, while the rest of the entries performed the stimulation a good pearl needs…. If that seems like a lot to read into five little quotes, well, maybe we need to practice more…. This is a very good pearl, ffolkes, so absorb it, even if you don’t ‘get it’ right off…. The power of metaphor can be abstruse, and slow-acting, but, it’s like a river that floods its banks…. inexorable….

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

“I hope something GOOD came in the mail today so I have a REASON to live!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

It probably says something about me, that such statements from Bill and Zippy strike me as so apt, at certain moments in time…. This one just jumped up into my face out of Smart Bee, demanding I use it here, in the closing section…. Actually, it tried to bully its way into the last pearl, but, I made it wait for the proper venue, and time, while distracting Zippy with a shiny coin…

Now that I seem to have purged myself of all the nonsense and crap that built up in there since yesterday, I’m going to, as they say, cut my losses, and hit the proverbial road…. Oh, don’t worry, I’ll proof first, but, I’ll do that in stealth mode, so it won’t disturb the natives, or, any of you….. See y’all tomorrow….

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

dozer3

Lonely, the severed head spoke from where it dwells, atop the garden gate….

Ffolkes,

Forlorn, empty of all hope, Barnabas Pettigrew trudged along the dusty highway, cursing every step with every breath, vowing to never again….. what? Blank, echoing vastness is all I see now, as Barnabas trudges along for no good reason, heading off into nowhere, presumably to give my head a good excuse for being up again at this ridiculous hour of the day…..

What is it about 3:00 AM that is so damned attractive, anyway? And why am I asking you? If I can’t figure out why my subconscious mind is out to get me, what chance will you have?…. Ah well, such is life in the blogosphere, where such absurdity may now be considered the norm, of sorts, for a great many otherwise stable personalities…. Honk, honk….

Now that the initial awkwardness is passing, let me ask you a question…. No, let’s change that…. Let me give you some advice…. No, that’s not a good idea; I forgot that my lawyer told me to stop doing that, or somebody was going to remember that I was the one who told them to do that, which might lead to more legal troubles than I already have….

Okay, so we’ll go another route…. if I can find one… I seem to be coming up against some kind of objection to every opening I’ve tried today. If I didn’t know better, I’d think that Murphy was hanging around, having fun, but, I happen to know he went on a short trip…. something about seeing a man about a dog, or something….

Hmm, now what? I’m unwilling to jump into just anything, or start on any subject at all today, at least, not here in the intro section, because, of late, whenever I do that, it turns into a rant; I’m trying to maintain a bit of discipline regarding structure, if at all possible, so almost anything that contains a shred of controversy is out, for the nonce.

(God, I LOVE that word!… “nonce”… and just LOOK at that sentence structure?…. Brilliant!…..I know, I’m strange…. deal with it, ffolkes, it’s too late to back out now; I’ve got your credit cards….)

It’s been so long since I tried to write about anything that WASN’T controversial, I’m finding it hard to even identify a subject worth investigating….. which isn’t all that surprising, given my usual fare here at ECR (for the uninitiated, that’s Exploring Consensual Reality, the actual title of this blog….).

I’m bored with this, which is a word I NEVER use…. Many moons ago, back before I even got into my teens, I made a conscious decision to eliminate boredom from my life, for the simple reason that it has no identifiable purpose, thus, it has no place in the life of anyone who uses their mind for more than merely existing.

To be bored, one must first admit that they are tired of what is going on in their own head,  an admission I refuse to make…. In short, one must DECIDE to be bored; it doesn’t just happen because we walked into the wrong room. We have to make that conscious decision to feel the ennui that settles over us when we fall prey to this self-indulgence, so, I refuse to entertain any such thoughts, thus, avoiding the entire issue, with all its concomitant troublesome side-effects upon the emotions, and on the degree of turbulence we experience in our life….

So, there’s your advice for the day, okay? Are y’all happy now, you’ve tricked me into divulging such inanities before I’ve even purged my mind? I’ll bet you are, you silly monkeys….. For that, I’m going to have to punish y’all severely, or, perhaps, just a little? Or not…. You know, I’m thinking, at this point, I’d better just give up on this intro, and get on with today’s dive…. Yes, I think that would be for the best….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“By this story [The Fox and the Raven] it is shown how much ingenuity avails, and how wisdom is always an overmatch for strength.” — Phaedrus (c. 8 A.D.) — Book i, Fable 13, 13

The question immediately arises, “What does one who has neither ingenuity, nor strength, do to avail himself?”

Oh, plus, “What the hell does “avail” mean, in this instance? How much can a word’s meaning change in only 2000 years?”

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“Power, like the diamond, dazzles the beholder, and also the wearer; it dignifies meanness; to what is contemptible, it gives authority; to what is low, exaltation.” — Charles Caleb Colton

I found this article tucked away in one of the lower sections of SFGATE, kind of like being on the next-to-last page in a newspaper, before the opinions, in the bottom corner of a page where nobody reads much…. I’m not sure why it’s buried there, because this subject is liable to be one of the more volatile that the court takes up this year, (though it hardly compares to the gay marriage issue, or the corporate personhood issue, both of which tend to bring out the worst in everyone….), because almost EVERYONE has feelings about TV… Almost all of us alive now DID grow up with it, so we have long-standing, firm ideas about how it should operate, and how it should be regulated, if at all….

First, read the article, then we’ll talk….

http://www.sfgate.com/opinion/openforum/article/Will-the-Supreme-Court-promote-innovation-in-TV-5371849.php?cmpid=hp-hc-nationworld

“Did you hear they removed the word gullible from the dictionary?” — Smart Bee

I will be watching closely to see how the Supremes handle this decision; it will go a long way toward identifying just how much corruption the justices have condescended to allow themselves to show to the public…. By that, I mean just what it sounds as if I mean…. It is my contention that the Supreme Court, along with many of the other levels of Federal courts (District, Circuit, etc…..) has been purchased outright by the bankers and shadowy corporate masters of society, to the point where they no longer even try to hide their predilection for making legal decisions that favor business over people, in almost every case that comes before them…

The conservative justices who were appointed to the various courts around the US by the two Shrubs are starting to make their insane power-hungry beliefs a matter of public record, making decision after decision that perpetuates the myth of corporate personhood, solidifying the idea that in this country, profit is guaranteed by law, protected from being altered or diminished by any such mundane factors as public wishes, or the concept of the common good in society….

This is how PAC’s have sprung into existence, those no-longer hidden bastions of corporate greed that throw money at all the elections they wish to influence, unrestrained by any limits on how much they can spend to bribe their chosen politicians…. This egregious display of ugly judicial, and political corruption, now legalized by the courts, illustrates exactly why this nation is now recognized by the rest of the planet as being a failed democracy….

This nation is now officially an oligarchy, bought and paid for by the rich, fat (headed, if naught else…), mostly white, misogynistic bigots, those shadowy slave masters, snakeheads by name, the real rulers of society, who spend their days telling the politicians what they want done….

“A criminal is a person with predatory instincts who has not sufficient capital to form a corporation.” — Howard Scott, Economist

Hell, some of them probably have posted lists, that show their lineup of Congressmen, Senators, and Federal Court judges who are on their payroll…. Maybe, all those pictures you see on the politicians’ walls, or those of CEO’s, with them posing with various public figures, are their way of posting the list of their acquisitions…. Makes sense to me…. Kind of like trophies, but they take up less space in the office….

Any who, now, the decision as to whether or not the big broadcast companies will have to actually live up to the deal they made, back before the Internet came along, is going to be made by the highest court (in THIS country); it will be very interesting indeed to see what direction it takes….

I don’t like to predict what the Supremes will do, because, if that court ever becomes predictable, then our form of government is finished…. Nobody should be able to say ahead of time what the court may decide; if it is predictable, then we have lost the balance on the bench that is required for them to remain objective about the law….

“Capitalism in the United States has undergone profound modification, not just under the New Deal, but through a consensus that continued to grow after the New Deal. Government in the U. S. today is a senior partner in every business in the country.” — Norman Cousins

Unfortunately, I’m thinking that in today’s world, it may just be that the court, the last hold-out against the corporate asininnies who would control us all, from cradle to grave, has been compromised, and will now begin the relatively short process of bringing this nation to its knees, in abject surrender to the forces of corporate avarice that control so much of our world. We’ll wait, of course, to see what takes place…. but, I’m pretty well convinced that we may have seen the last of real liberty in this country, and are now just waiting around to see when the revolution will begin, and how it will all fall out….

“Cheshire-Puss,” she began, “would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?”
“That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,” said the Cat.
“I don’t care much where–” said Alice.
“Then it doesn’t much matter which way you go,” said the Cat.
“–so long as I get SOMEWHERE,” Alice added as an explanation.
“Oh, you’re quite sure to do that,” said the Cat, “if you only walk long enough.”

— Lewis Carroll, “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”

The ball is now in the Supreme’s court…. let’s see which way they go from here, shall we?….. I suppose, if we wait, or walk long enough, we’ll end up somewhere….

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After ranting in such a sober fashion, a classic poem sounds like just the right next step for today…. Here is one that most of us have read, or seen, at one time or another in our lives, if only in sophomore English class…. I liked it then, and still do…. Enjoy!….

Death Be Not Proud

Death be not proud, though some have called thee
Mighty and dreadfull, for, thou art not soe,
For, those, whom thou think’st, thou dost overthrow,
Die not, poore death, nor yet canst thou kill mee.
From rest and sleepe, which but thy pictures bee,
Much pleasure, then from thee, much more must flow,
And soonest our best men with thee doe goe,
Rest of their bones, and soules deliverie.
Thou art slave to Fate, Chance, kings, and desperate men,
And dost with poyson, warre, and sicknesse dwell,
And poppie, or charmes can make us sleepe as well,
And better then thy stroake; why swell’st thou then?
One short sleepe past, wee wake eternally,
And death shall be no more; death, thou shalt die.

~~ John Donne ~~

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Before I started today, I had already planted an old rant, of sorts, in this section, from last February, a discussion of ethics and morality that came out fairly well…. but, after the rant above, I thought it might be too much sobriety for one day, and nobody needs to be THAT dedicated…. Quality of life isn’t about having justice, though it is good to have that, but, rather, it’s about having experiences that improve our spirit, making us want to become better people, while learning to enjoy the process of doing so….

In light of that concept, we’ll go for an old-school pearl, with loose parameters to keep it from becoming too constricting, or judgmental…. We’ll shoot for ideas from other cultures that can meld with our own ideas, to help us become more complete human beings… which might be a lot to ask from a group of aphorisms, but, hey, we’re nothing, if not ambitious, around here, right?…. Right….

“You white people are so strange.  We think it is very primitive for a child to have only two parents.” — Australian Aboriginal Elder

Happily may I walk.
May it be beautiful before me.
May it be beautiful behind me.
May it be beautiful below me.
May it be beautiful above me.
May it be beautiful all around me.
In beauty it is finished.

— Navajo (Anasazi) Night Chant

“Alas, reason is not effective against faith, or against searches for miracles by the desperate.” — Dr. Michael B. Shimkin

“There is no road or ready way to virtue.” — Sir Thomas Browne (1605-1682) — Religio Medici, Part i, Sect. lv

Remembrance and reflection how allied!
What thin partitions sense from thought divide!

— Alexander Pope (1688-1744) — Essay on Man, Epistle i, Line 225

“Who, being loved, is poor?’ — Oscar Wilde

Folly, thou conquerest, and I must yield!
Against stupidity the very gods
Themselves contend in vain. Exalted reason,
Resplendent daughter of the head divine,
Wise foundress of the system of the world,
Guide of the stars, who are thou then, if thou,
Bound to the tail of folly’s uncurb’d steed,
Must, vainly shrieking, with the drunken crowd,
Eyes open, plunge down headlong in the abyss.

— Johann Christian Friedrich von Schiller, The Maid of Orleans

Astounded, I stare into the mirror, wondering how I could ever have doubted serendipity…..

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“My face is new, my license is expired, and I’m under a doctor’s care!!!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

Sometimes, the words Zippy gives us (Thank you, Bill Griffith!…) seem to connect to reality in my mind in a most satisfying, accurate fashion; this quote hits the nail squarely on the head for this morning, giving a quite exact description of my state of being after composing all of the above…. Save for the poem by Donne, and the authorship of the quotes, it’s all fresh, and well-purged, if I do say so myself….

Well, I feel better, anyway, so, I’m hoping that carries over into your life and times today, as well…. If not, well, I’m content; if you got even one chuckle, or even a querulous smile, from reading what I’ve written today, that will do nicely…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes….

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

dozer3

Tattered remnants of a once proud machine….

Ffolkes,
Mmmmm…. coffee, good….mmph, grglk, blast, hmph, okay…. Sorry, took a moment for the coffee to kick in…. Let me just say this, and we’re good to go…. Draco! Braz! Mento!  Ah, yes, all fine now…. Having uttered the proper incantation, to prepare the air for such brilliance, and to put up the wards against theft and interruption, we may now proceed to Pearl, if we are able…. We are always willing, but, often, the flesh is weak, so it’s best to “prepare the palette”, as a painter would say…. Not that I paint, no, far from it…. My drawing of a crowd looks like a convention of stick figures, kind of like watching someone count on an abacus; if you look at it for long, it will make you dizzy….

Drawing is one of those skills lacking from my toolbox; for some reason, probably having to do with spatial visualization, I can’t seem to get the hang of putting on paper what I see with my eyes. Most of my drawings resemble something by Dali during his melting clock phase, without the clarity of figures he painted so well…. An artist must know how to draw properly before turning to drawing in the abstract; since my work doesn’t come close to reality, my abstractions are just weird….. It’s okay, though, one cannot expect to be able to do EVERYTHING one wants to do, unless you are Leonardo da Vinci, or someone of his level of genius….

I can paint a picture with words, though, and pretty well, once I turn my mind to it. In fact, these introductory sections have turned out to be one of my favorite places to practice that skill, as I try one style or format after another, in my constant search for an acceptable template for this somewhat unorganized section. Those days when I write the first paragraph or two as a fictional story beginning are my practice sessions, and some of them aren’t half-bad, if I do say so myself…. Now, as I have been chastised to believe by a number of my readers, all I need to do is to continue one of those beginnings to the logical ending of the story, and I could probably get published for real…..

Alas for the world, I don’t wish to do that just now…. I’ve just begun to receive my SS disability benefits, and if I publish a book, whatever I make off its sale would be taken out of those benefits, in the form of a reduction in the money I receive each month. Since I’ve been waiting for this to happen for over two years, I don’t want to fuss with the system, yet…. If and when I can sell a book for a hefty price, of at least a half-million, I will consider publishing; any less of an initial amount wouldn’t cover what I would lose from SS over time, and would be a chancy risk to take at this point in my life…. If I can broker a deal for more than that amount, I’d consider it, as I would then have enough to cover my retirement, and all I wish to do in this period of my life….

So, y’all will have to wait a year or two…. If I can work on putting together more than one book, then publish them one after another, or a multi-book deal, I might be able to get by on what I’d make from it…. But, until I can get at least a half-assed guarantee of making enough to get by, I’ll continue to publish here on WP, for the same reason I’ve been doing it for the last two years, to wit: to maintain my sanity….. Such as it is….. Why, look! We’ve got ourselves five paragraphs here, which is plenty to qualify as an intro, cheating or not…..   On that note, Shall we Pearl?…..
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“Somewhere in suburban Honolulu, an unemployed bellhop is whipping up a batch of illegal psilocybin chop suey!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

Fucking brilliant! Bill Griffith, the cartoonist who created Zippy, is an absolutely awesome social critic, and the perpetrator of some of the most obscure nonsense, (that makes perfect sense), that has ever been written, or published….. As is apparent from the frequent appearance of his quotes in this blog, I find him to be incredibly insightful about human nature, a naturally poetic prose writer, weird as hell, and an excellent graphic artist. Zippy’s comments on life and everything he sees in the strange world he inhabits are priceless, for their acute insight, for their gut-busting humor, and are strangely real, despite the unreality of almost everything in the strip…. It’s eerie sometimes, how life will imitate art; I’ll find myself having a deja vu memory of one of Zippy’s lines when I am out in the Big Blue Room, dealing with some business or another, because it matches the unreality of what was in the strip….

At first, I didn’t understand how including this line was to fit into the Pearl, or even into the pearl, but, then I realized…. I am the unemployed bellhop today, and I’m whipping up the distilled mushroom juice, right here on my computer! Look! It’s a whole new type of oyster! (Further research reveals this statement to be false, partly…. I found a couple of old Pearls that experimented with this format, slightly differently, though… so, this is still fairly unique….. end of interrupt….) 

I’ve just had a brainstorm of major proportions; since I had no warning of its advent, I went down on the first big wave, and died a figurative death…. I was hanging in limbo, sort of floating there, while the gods decided just how badly they wanted my ass in a sling, when it came to me…. This is a sign from the gods of blogging, to show me a new species of pearl…. which, having been dumped in my head, I must use, before it rots there, or the gods zap me… So, here is a pearl, in this case, the first of its kind, with five pointed quotes, and a number of comments from yours truly, standing in as Zippy, in disguise, sort of…..

I see the lights of the village
gleam through the rain and the mist.
And a feeling of sadness comes o’er me,
that my soul cannot resist.
A feeling of sadness and longing
that is not akin to pain,
And resembles sorrow only
as the mist resembles rain.

— Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882), The Day is done

(I often forget about Longfellow’s poetry, and it is what he is famous for, at least during his own time…. Now, of course he is known as one of the Trinameral Poets, that category which includes himself, Ralph Waldo Emerson, George Bernard Shaw, William Butler Yeats, John Cougar Mellencamp, James Earl Jones, and so forth…. all good poets for sure, so he is in good company…. but, what is with those names, eh? Bit egotistical, don’t you think?…..)

“Those who hope for no other life are dead even for this.” — Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

(Goethe had a knack for this kind of deep, many leveled insights, pointing out with just a few well chosen words a very complex principle of human nature, or interaction… This one, no matter how one interprets it, is true as the day, and gives an appropriate feeling of emotional content, namely sadness, both for the one lacking in vision, and for the person observing them…..)

“We who lived in concentration camps can remember the men who walked through the huts comforting others, giving away their last piece of bread. They may have been few in number, but they offer sufficient proof that everything can be taken away from a man except one thing: the last of the human freedoms— to choose one`s own attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.” — Victor Frankl

(Not much to add here; this is pretty clear, and also quite true…. It has been said that true freedom, is the release from pain, which is absolutely congruent with this idea. When one chooses one’s reaction, and makes their own choice of how to feel, they are choosing to let go of their pain, and gaining their freedom, if only in their own mind…. Another way of saying you can’t make a truly free man do anything he refuses to do…. You can kill him, but you can’t make him change his mind, or take away his freedom in that respect…..)

Thou foster-child of Silence and slow Time. — John Keats (1795-1821) — Ode on a Grecian Urn

(Just too beautiful a line to leave out…..)

Behold on wrong
Swift vengeance waits; and art subdues the strong!

— Alexander Pope (1688-1744) — The Odyssey of Homer, Book viii, Line 367

(Hmm…. this is a bit depressing, if it means what I think…. Nah, I must be wrong, so, never mind…. Oh, I see now…. Okay, well, I guess so, but, I think I’ll use my stick for that….. Ya think?….)

Well, there you go…. you will probably see this format again, though with different quotes, of course…. And, I think I can even do it this way with a normal pearl, maybe even a Seven Star…..  Wait! I didn’t mean it as a threat! Come back!….. Oh, hell….. Ah well, c’est la vie…. hopefully, they’ll find their way to the exit, or on to section two…. If not, I’ll send out a search party after I’m done here…..

“I always have fun because I’m out of my mind!!!” — Zippy the Pinhead
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I’m working on a poem, but it’s only half completed, so this morning will see another haiku, served up freshly composed, and a poem I wrote last October, about Love, sort of…. Hope you like it…..  As every day this month, this is for the April National Poetry Writing Month Challenge, with the updates to be found here:  http://www.napowrimo.net/

Haiku V

I can write haiku
quick, at the drop of a pun.
Such wonderful fun.

~~ gigoid ~~

Beyond Agapé

Passion burns, shining like iridescent paint
yet solitude stands mocking such mundane complaint.
Schemes and dreams promise to tempt attraction
never ending effort spends wit in perverse reaction.

Hale and hearty reports of honor and love
draft recruits to collect manna from above,
while searching each soul for that which will serve
to bring pure sensation to each expectant nerve.

How simple to fall into complete helpless hope
of two hearts bound in tradition, with cultural rope,
living a simple life, shared, in joy and in grief
promises consummated, in consensual belief.

Reality dictates our degree of control over its state
insisting on changing whether or not we can wait.
Love will be present when we are completely at peace,
allowing ourselves, to give of ourselves, without cease.

~~ gigoid ~~

__________________________________

Go boldly forth, my simple lay,
Whose accents flow with artless ease,
Like orient pearls at random strung.

— Sir William Jones (1746-1794) — A Persian Song of Hafiz

I had intended to rant in this section today…. Unfortunately for me, (I won’t presume to say the same for y’all….), my back is killing me today, and I’ve a number of things to accomplish, in preparation for my upcoming trip(s) to Tejas, and to Europa…. which is a roundabout way of saying I’m about to cheat again…. Here is a pearl from 2011…. bonus points if you can figure out the month it was written, from whatever context you may find…. Enjoy! And, good luck, or as we say downtown, buena suerte!….
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Ffolkes,
As I’m sure you’re aware of by now, it takes a really, really weird guy to do this every day, rain or shine, clothed or not, and that the process of putting these ideas down and sharing them is one that brings me not just pleasure, but pain as well. (Like anything worthwhile in Life, I suppose). I’m writing for a blog site, and wrote a piece yesterday that took me back, in first person with full audio memory, to a time of my life I’d just as soon forget most days. But it helped ease the pain somewhat, and reminded me that I don’t write for recognition, or praise, I write because I must! Not writing is……unthinkable. I don’t know what I would do if I couldn’t write; I think it would act much like my bowel disease, causing alternate bouts of mental diarrhea and constipation, with the accompanying pain and discomfort. Since I don’t enjoy that, particularly, I choose to write….. lucky you……

“A man begins cutting his wisdom teeth the first time he bites off more than he can chew.” — Herb Caen

A good pun is its own reword.

“Cato requested old men not to add the disgrace of wickedness to old age, which was accompanied with many other evils.” — Plutarch (46-120 AD) — Roman Apophthegms, Cato the Elder

“Religious liberty might be supposed to mean that everybody is free to discuss religion. In practice it means that hardly anybody is allowed to mention it.” — G. K. Chesterton, Autobiography, 1937

“It’s said that ‘power corrupts’, but actually it’s  more true  that power attracts the corruptible.  The sane are usually attracted by other things than power.  When  they do  act,  they  think of it as service, which has limits. The tyrant, though, seeks mastery, for which he is  insatiable, implacable.”  — David Brin, The Postman

“People who don’t Think probably don’t have Brains; rather, they have grey fluff that’s blown into their heads by mistake.” — Pooh’s Little Instruction Book, inspired by A. A. Milne
__________________________________

“Well, Stanley, this is another fine mess you’ve gotten us into…. What do you have to say for yourself?”  More bonus points are available to anyone who can give me the first name of the person who said those lines, frequently….

Okay, so, I’ve read back over what we have here, and I think….. Well, quite frankly, I don’t know what to think…. I’m going to leave it alone, and let it fly, as is, trusting to luck and my lawyers to keep it from becoming legally actionable…. In the meantime….  Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..

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

dozer3