Have the mango smoothies been certified yet?….

Dark, out-of-focus images of lava filled volcanoes, steaming rivers flowing down their sides, against a backdrop of a smoky sunset of unimaginable color and beauty, float around in my mind’s eye, with no concomitant tales of interest attached, making me wonder yet again just what it is that makes me want to do this again. Each morning, I stare at the blank page before me, and let my mind assume a trance-like state, while it searches through the inner realm for yet another fresh way to begin, only to find mere remnants of ideas once fully formed, or abandoned phrases that have no connection to anything real.

Somewhere inside me is a lake of material, waiting to be written; I can feel it, and often catch glimpses out of the corner of my eye, before it flashes off into the vast, unknown reaches of my mind, where I never willingly go, knowing it will be safe there until ready to flow out onto a page…. A lot of what I write is spontaneous, at least in the sense that I don’t decide beforehand what subject is to be explored. Instead, I let Smart Bee, or some random thought, dictate the choice of material, having found long ago that I am more likely to come up with something interesting that way. When I decide beforehand, I feel like I’m back in school, writing a paper on a given subject, with the length and style pretty well fixed, and not amenable to alteration. It’s probably not a particularly efficient method, but it works for me, most of the time….

“If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you’ll probably want to know is where I was born, and what my lousy childhood was like, and how my parents were occupied and all before they had me, and all that David Copperfield kind of crap, but I don’t feel like going into it, if you want to know the truth.” — The Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger, 1951

But, it does make it hard each day to come up with an intro, (especially when J.D. has already written the ultimate version of this kind of opening, one that denies normalcy)…. and it just occurred to me that y’all are probably getting tired of hearing that. I wish I didn’t whine about it so often…. a statement that occurs to me to be just about as dumb as anything I’ve ever come up with…. If I didn’t do it, I wouldn’t have to whine about it… If I didn’t whine about it, I probably wouldn’t do it as often… Any way one looks at it, whining about it just exacerbates the issue, and makes it into something significant, instead of the minor issue it ought to be…..

Hmm…. it also occurs to me that I am approaching this in a manner that guarantees the issue won’t die, an event which is anathema to me…. Why am I doing this to myself? I am forced to admit, I believe my sub-, or un-, conscious mind seems to have set up a situation here where I am continually set up to fail, at least in my own eyes, and THAT is unacceptable! The world, and the assholes who have set themselves up as the BRC, fuck me in the ass on a daily basis, just like they do everyone, and doing it to myself is NOT what I’d call intelligent…. So, it stops here….

No more whining about intros… no more angst about blank pages…. no more bullshit cop-outs relating how hard it is to come up with ideas on a daily basis, and make them interesting, to boot. It’s the same issue every day, and all this repetitive fooferaw is getting on my nerves, so, I’m done with it…. I know it doesn’t help this particular Pearl, but, in the future, you can look forward to an intro section that doesn’t complain, that doesn’t serve cheese, with or without whine, one that doesn’t drag on forever before getting on with the show…. In deference to that glorious future…. Shall we Pearl?…..

“The character of human life, like the character of the human condition, like the character of all life, is “ambiguity”: the inseparable mixture of good and evil, the true and false, the creative and destructive forces — both individual and social.” — Paul Tillich

Having discovered within myself exactly how much such ambiguity can affect our lives, I feel compelled to add that one must learn to use that ambiguity, to balance its overall effect on us, with competence, confidence, and steadfast aplomb, else it will use us, instead….

“Truth needs no flowers of speech.” — Alexander Pope

What immediately comes to mind when I look at this, is an image of a politician, mouth open, spewing out lie after lie, couched in flowery terms designed to draw in the listener with sweet, colorful little statements of intent, that have no relation at all to what is real, or what they will actually do. The more flowery a speech one hears from one of these pundits, the more you can be assured that all of it is lies. It is a time tested method of fooling the public…. tell them what they WANT to hear, and they will fall right into line…. Tell them what they don’t wish to hear, and they will mill around in confusion, and go through immense contortions to keep from using their minds, or making their own decisions, and, most importantly to them, it will make them uncomfortable, and fractious…..

My mind is almost automatically inclined to rant when I see a line such as this, and I’m always willing to take a few shots at the BRC, politicians, AND/OR any of their myrmidons and/or supporters, comprised of the mass of humanity that prefers to NOT use their brains for anything other than figuring out how to use the remote control, or sitting on. But, I slept a bit late today, and I’m feeling a bit lazy, at the moment, anyway, so I’m going to depend on SB to come up with an old-school pearl that will poke a stick or two into the eyes of the assholes who most deserve it….. SB is usually pretty good at that, so, let’s see what’s what….

“Heroism on command, senseless violence, and all the loathsome nonsense that goes by the name of patriotism — how passionately I hate them!” — Albert Einstein

“History is always written wrong, and so always needs to be rewritten. …What is interesting is brought forward as if it had been central and efficacious in the march of events, and harmonies are turned into causes. Kings and generals are endowed with motives appropriate to what the historian values in their actions; plans are imputed to them prophetic of their actual achievements, while the thoughts that really preoccupied them remain buried in absolute oblivion.” — George Santayana, The Life of Reason:  Reason in Science, 1918

BIBLE  A bible is a book which one or more religions consider to be holy, and to be something that they should follow. It is of course generally rather impractical to follow books, not just because they don’t often go anywhere, but also because they are not very good at public speaking, decision making, problem solving, or any of the other qualities recognized as being an advantage for leadership. A religion based around the teachings of any compilation of Toxic Custard would be very strange indeed. To subscribe to this new cult following, send $15 now. — Daniel Bowen’s TOXIC CUSTARPEDIA

“A tough lesson in life that one has to learn is that not everybody wishes you well.” — Dan Rather

“Who does not see that the same authority which can establish Christianity, in exclusion of all other religions, may establish with the same ease any particular sect of Christians, in exclusion of all other sects?” — James Madison, Memorial and Remonstrance

“And unextinguish’d laughter shakes the skies.” — Alexander Pope (1688-1744) — The Iliad of Homer, Book i, Line 771

Ffolkes, I just can’t make it any plainer than that…..

This is a reprint of a poem I used some time ago…. It’s being reused because, a) it’s bloody brilliant, and b) it kind of fits in with the mood for today…. and those are all I need to justify it to myself, as I know the poetry buffs out there will enjoy it, for the genius it is….

Witch Burning

In the marketplace they are piling the dry sticks.
A thicket of shadows is a poor coat. I inhabit
The wax image of myself, a doll’s body.
Sickness begins here: I am the dartboard for witches.
Only the devil can eat the devil out.
In the month of red leaves I climb to a bed of fire.

It is easy to blame the dark: the mouth of a door,
The cellar’s belly. They’ve blown my sparkler out.
A black-sharded lady keeps me in parrot cage.
What large eyes the dead have!
I am intimate with a hairy spirit.
Smoke wheels from the beak of this empty jar.

If I am a little one, I can do no harm.
If I don’t move about, I’ll knock nothing over. So I said,
Sitting under a potlid, tiny and inert as a rice grain.
They are turning the burners up, ring after ring.
We are full of starch, my small white fellows. We grow.
It hurts at first. The red tongues will teach the truth.

Mother of beetles, only unclench your hand:
I’ll fly through the candle’s mouth like a singeless moth.
Give me back my shape. I am ready to construe the days
I coupled with dust in the shadow of a stone.
My ankles brighten. Brightness ascends my thighs.
I am lost, I am lost, in the robes of all this light.

~~ Sylvia Plath ~~


In keeping with today’s themes, which are, respectively, Truth, and Madness…. (what else?), I submit the following, an excerpt from the archives, from early 2012, comprised of two short pearls, one a short indictment re: the spread of religious dogma, and one short but telling list of woes currently present in Reality…. If nothing else, they’re in color…. Oh, right, that’s only if you have the correct software… never mind, just read on, you’ll understand….

“God is more interested in your future and your relationships than you are.” — Billy Graham

Now, if that isn’t a scary thought, I know nothing of fear; I assure you, however, fear is an old friend, with whom I am quite familiar, in all its guises. Now, to give credit where it is due, I suppose it must be noted that, from the standpoint of someone of Mr. Graham’s ilk, this is a very powerful statement of belief; it has all the proper elements for that particular delusional thought process (if one may stretch the definition of ‘thought process’ just a bit).

It is based purely on assumption, with no hint of anything resembling direct evidence. It implies omnipotence, displays deified arrogance, identifies a source for guilt, and encourages a fear of death. It vagueness allows the moral ambiguity necessary for the complete abrogation of personal responsibility for one’s actions. And, like all such proclamations of this nature, its very words indicate a complete and utter dislike for humans, both individually, and as a species.

My immediate and forceful response to this was “Then you, and God, need to get a Life! If y’all have nothing better to do in your copious free time than to try to shove this kind of crap into people’s minds, then you need to find a new activities director for the imaginary cruise you are on…. or find some better drugs.”  But, that’s just me…..

(Oops…. I think I just heresied on several important religions…..)

Conscious is when you are aware of something and conscience is when you wish you weren’t. — Smart Bee (Anonymous, by any other name, smells as sweet…)

Insane politicians (is there another kind?). Human trafficking. Racism. Bigotry. Child abuse. Spousal abuse. Slavery. Crack cocaine, heroin, morphine, or other drug abuse. War on crime. War on women. Televangelists. Fundamentalist zealots. National Security Agency. FBI. CIA. Untold trillions of dollars of national debt.  Genetically modified food. Military Industrial Complex. The 1%/99% Society. Taxes. Global warming. Air pollution. The oceans are dying. Terrorism. Nuclear accidents. Massive global weather changes. Ozone depletion. Overpopulation. AIDS. Mutating viruses. The Bohemian Club. Reaganomics. Nationalism. Elitism. Illuminati Conspiracy. Women’s reproductive rights. Bill of Rights (or rather, loss of same). War on the US Constitution.  Rampant ignorance. Lawyers. Priests. Rabbis. Imams.  Puppy mills. Wall Street. Corporate personhood. The IRS. Insane politicians. (Did I say that already? Well, it deserves mentioning twice….)  Rising incidence of halitosis.

Except for the last, which is more of a personal foible, I’d say that’s a fairly extensive, and mostly complete, list of stuff I am aware of that I wish I weren’t; and it all came right off the top of my head, no research.  It certainly keeps my sense of outrage in good shape….. which is why we all need to practice the following sentiment at every opportunity…. otherwise, we are all going to be up Shit Creek without a paddle, proverbial or otherwise…..

“Speak out. You’ve got to speak out against the madness.” — Steven Stills

Well there you go…. This is what happens when I’m allowed to dress myself, I guess…. Let’s see how it looks in the mirror….  Wow… it’s like a vampire, nothing shows at all…. I suppose that’s my usual morning alteration of consciousness kicking in, but, just in case it isn’t, try to ignore any parts that are showing signs of infection, okay…. And that’s all I’m required to say, according to public health regulations, so I’d best draw this to a rapid close, and catch that last train out of town, before the authorities show up for a late breakfast interrogation….  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.