Nothing like boiled mutton….

Ffolkes,

I went to the doctor, I went to the mountains
I looked to the children, I drank from the fountain
There’s more than one answer to these questions
pointing me in a crooked line.
The less I seek my source for some definitive
The closer I am to fine.

~~ the Indigo Girls ~`

~~ Closer to Fine ~~

Most-Photogenic-Dog-9 Lin Tranhs Chuppy

Chuppy and friend

Image by Jessica Trinh, as posted by adollyciousirony at:

http://allaboutlemon.com/2015/06/28/chuppy-the-most-photogenic-dog-2/

with more pictures here:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/jessicachuppy/


Good morrow, my fine, fuzzy ffolkes…. No, I have no idea why I sound so chipper today, but, hey, it’s better than the usual curmudgeonly sarcasm, don’t you think? Well, I don’t, so, screw it… Let’s get on with this, okay? Don’t ask, so I won’t have to break the mood, right? No worries, just the usual morning visit from The Murph, may his nards forever freeze…

Shall we Pearl?

“He who is most slow in making a promise, is the most faithful in the performance of it.” — Rousseau

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BigAjzLgT (2)

    Since I’m late, and lazy, we’ll go with some old BBC TV…. Here is an old Sherlock Holmes story, with a good, meaty story, though with some REALLY bad acting displayed in two instances in this episode…. Ladies and bozos, I give you, Sherlock….


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The Solitary Cyclist

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lao

    I am late, (did mention I’m late again?….), so, I’ll have to sublimate yet again…. Today, let’s go with a bit of philosophy, of sorts…. Works for me.

From 8/16/2012:

“Nothing in the world is more flexible and yielding than water. Yet when it attacks the firm and the strong, none can withstand it, because they have no way to change it. So the flexible overcome the adamant, the yielding overcome the forceful. Everyone knows this, but no one can do it.” — Lao-Tzu

Water…. the power of water is unmatched over time; just ask the Grand Canyon. Water ties us to the universe; our physical make-up depends on it for survival, as well as mere existence. It is so soft, and yielding, yet cannot be destroyed at all; one can only cause it to change form, from ice, to water, to steam, all of which hold the same properties as the middle state, though slightly differently interpreted. Most important, to the scholar’s mind, is its nature…. emulating its spirit, becoming like water, is the goal of almost all meditation practice, as well as a goal of the martial artist….

“My writing is like a ten gallon spring.  It can issue from the ground anywhere at all.  On smooth ground it rushes swiftly on and covers a thousand li in a single day without difficulty.  When it twists and turns among mountains and rocks, it fits its form to things it meets: unknowable. What can be known is, it always goes where it must go, always stops where it cannot help stopping — nothing else. More than that, even I cannot know.” — Su Shih

One of the most powerful of concepts in martial arts is the emulation of water. The student is taught to learn how to move like water, to move with the rhythm of the universe as energy flows from one point to another. One of the most valuable techniques I’ve seen to teach this lesson is one where the student stands in a balanced stance, one foot forward; the arms are held in front of the body, as if holding a large ball. The student then moves his weight from the back foot to the front foot, then back again, while moving the ball in a slow circle, pushed away when moving forward, and brought back when the weight shifts to the rear….

The trick to learn is to be like the tide, accepting the water as it flows in to its highest point, then moving with it as it irresistibly flows back into the sea, as the weight moves to the front foot. A smooth shifting of the weight, and finding the correct rhythm teaches both balance, and strength, and the power of moving like water…. Learning to use gravity as an ally, instead of a limitation, gives one an unimaginable advantage over one who does not know how to do so….

In addition to the physical lessons that water has to teach us, it also provides the intellect with a subject of study, to find the nature of water in its most real state. Learning the nature of water brings us closer to an understanding of all nature, and how we may fit into it with the most beneficial attitudes. The path of least resistance, followed by water as it flows downhill, teaches us to learn to find the same path for ourselves. The immutability of water teaches us how to resist changes to our nature, while remaining in touch with those parts of the universe that are within all of us…. And the flexibility of water teaches us to remain flexible ourselves, to learn to recognize when it is time to be ice, when it is time to be steam, and when it is time to flow like water in its normal state…..

Joshu asked the teacher Nansen, “What is the True Way?”

Nansen answered, “Every way is the true Way.”

Joshu asked, “Can I study it?”

Nansen answered, “The more you study, the further from the Way.”

Joshu asked, “If I don’t study it, how can I know it?”

Nansen answered, “The Way does not belong to things seen: nor to things  unseen. It does not belong to things known: nor to things unknown. Do not  seek it, study it, or name it. To find yourself on it, open yourself as wide as the sky.”

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Comedy_Tragedy

Serendipity Morning

My mind wants to fly,
   my soul wants to hold close, the source,
strong, the moments of time;
   each as precious as golden thread,
binding together such elements of longing desire.

Love hovers, always patient,
   seeking the open heart,
reaching for the promise of tomorrow…..
   only for one, only for now, only what is real….
Dreaming, the morning calls,
   heavy with mordant belief,
replete, and eternally alive…..

~~ gigoid ~~


Written 4/1/2013.

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buddah-out-to-lunch_s

    Okay…. We made it this far, but, SB is being snarky; we’re going back into the archives, so, gird your grids for a big one!…. Enjoy….

From 8/18/2012:

The following is an old-school pearl, with a specific thought in mind for you to deduce….. For the sake of everyone’s blood pressure, that specific thought will be revealed at the end…. I don’t usually provide such answers, but, today, I thought I’d give a treat, just ’cause I’m a nice guy…. Really, I am……

Child:  “Supreme Being, why is there evil in the world?”
Supreme Being (Sir John Gielgud in a Savile Row suit): “Oh, dear, I can’t remember, exactly. . . something to do with free will, I believe.”

— Terry Gilliam, _The Time Bandits_

“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

Halfway down the stairs
Is a stair
Where I sit.
There isn’t any
Other stair
Quite like
It.
I’m not at the bottom,
I’m not at the top;
So this is the stair
Where
I always
Stop.

~~ A.A. Milne ~~


“Belief gets in the way of learning.” — Robert Heinlein, Time Enough for Love

“Truth, in the matters of religion, is simply the opinion that has survived.” — Oscar Wilde

“SANTA CLAUS comes down a FIRE ESCAPE wearing bright  blue LEG WARMERS.  He scrubs the POPE with a mild soap or detergent for 15 minutes, starring JANE FONDA!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

You may be asking yourself at this point, just what have I gotten myself into? Well, relax, it’s no big deal….. all of the foregoing is intended to lead you to the following….. which WILL be on the quiz…..

An it harms none, do what thou will.

~~ Wiccan Credo ~~


Alternate answer, also correct:

There’s little in taking or giving,
   There’s little in water or wine:
This living, this living, this living,
      Was never a project of mine.
Oh, hard is the struggle, and sparse is
 The gain of the one at the top,
For art is a form of catharsis,
      And love is a permanent flop,
And work is the province of cattle,
    And rest’s for a clam in a shell,
So I’m thinking of throwing the battle —
  Would you kindly direct me to hell?

~~ Dorothy Parker ~~


“Birth, school, work, death.  About sums it up, I think.” — Smart Bee

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It seems, in spite of all I could do, it’s done, well before I had any feeling of being in control…. Ah, well, I guess tomorrow is another day, and, since we’re done, I’ll just pretend it never happened…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes; I promise, I’ll do better….

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

When I works, I works hard.
When I sits, I sits loose.
When I thinks, I falls asleep.

Which is Why….

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

gigoid, the dubious

The *only* duly authorized Computer Curmudgeon.

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

dozer3


À bientôt, mon cherí….


			

Flicking and swishing here, your grogginess….

Ffolkes,

Spintharus, speaking in commendation of Epaminondas, says he scarce
ever met with any man who knew more and spoke less.

 ~~ Plutarch (46-120 AD) ~~ Of Hearing, 6

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True is suffering; this is true cause;
this is true cessation; this is the true path.

Know the sufferings; give up they causes;
attain the cessation of the suffering; follow the true paths.

Know the sufferings although there is nothing to know;
relinquish the causes of misery although there is nothing to relinquish;
be earnest in cessation although there is nothing to cease;
practice the means of cessation although there is nothing to practice.

~~ Buddha, The Four Noble Truths ~~

cats_17

    In case there is ANY question as to the meaning of any of the above…. The first quote is there to set the tone…. The next quote, from  the Buddha, is there to show how the Buddha understood Reality, which is to say, very well…. If you look at the picture of the three pals napping on the sidewalk, then consider the Four Noble Truths, you will see that each of these animals…. dog, cat, rat…. are all perfect examples of a creature who LIVES by those precepts…. They all know how hard life can be, but are content to have a serene moment of companionship, without becoming wrapped up in any species-oriented chauvinism…. I think it’s pretty cool myself…

It’s also a good thing it’s here, because I’m late again, and will have to rely on stuff that was either done ahead of time, or is very quick and easy to put in here, where it can do me some good…. Some bloggers would probably just re-blog an old blog, but, I like to at least put some effort into making something fresh each day, even if it is only a fresh reprint of an older piece…. I’m finding my rants from a couple of years ago are all still pretty valid, what with the crap that continues to plague us due to the shenanigans of the Asininnies, and their ilk….

Since I am so late, though, we’ll go with some of that older material, just to save the time…. At least I’m not using the old lame excuse of expediency, or doing this because of my own hidden agenda…. No, my agenda is right out there, and only has to do with getting done with this with a bit of dignity intact, not with ripping y’all off, or making sure I’m in control of your life…. which is what you can count on from your local politicians, and their myrmidons….

In that vein, I believe I may have reached a point where I can put an end to this intro section…. or, if that isn’t feasible, I can usually use one of the methods we’ve developed to help us in these moments of uncertainty….  Why, look, here’s one of them now! I believe it’s actually the method we call #4, the old standby…. It works like this….

Shall we Pearl?….

“It did not matter, after all. He was only one man. One man’s fate is not important.
If it is not, what is?
He could not endure those remembered words.”

— Ursula K. Le Guin, spoken by Gaverel Rocannon, Rocannon’s World

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Since I am not going to rant this morning, I’m going to sublimate, in order to relieve some of the built-up angst, from the last couple of days of headline reading without producing a rant to release the worst of the pressure, I will create an old-school pearl, fresh and sharp, to poke some holes in the blanket of wool that the Asininnies are forever trying to pull over our eyes….

“If turkeys could fly Congress would be an airport…!” — Smart Bee

“As Mankind becomes more liberal, they will be more apt to allow that all those who conduct themselves as worthy members of the community are equally entitled to the protections of civil government.  I hope ever to see America among the foremost nations of justice and liberality.” — George Washington

(Well…. So much for THAT idea!…..)

“The release of atom power has changed everything except our way of thinking…the solution to this problem lies in the heart of mankind.  If only I had known, I should have become a watchmaker.” — Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

“I don’t care what is written about me so long as it isn’t true.” — Dorothy Parker

(A little known fact about this quote…. Dorothy was quoting Howard Taft….)

(That, of course, is a lie; I made it up…. but, it SOUNDS true, doesn’t it?…. By which, we see it may be defined as a “political truth”….)

“It is hard to free fools from the chains they revere.” — Voltaire

“If you have a weak candidate and a weak platform, wrap yourself up in the American flag and talk about the Constitution.” — Matthew S. Quay

“The reason that poverty and homelessness exist is not because capitalism is not working properly, but because that is the way it works.” — Smart Bee

Not bad, not bad at all for what it is…. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did….. I’m going to go clean up now…. Wait, first, I’ll try to make up for this, with one more pearl, that should help you feel a little better…. If not, well, there’s always aspirin in the first-aid kit if you want one….

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I’m going with mine, to save time, and blame…. I hope you enjoy this one; it’s from December of 2012…..

Dreaming of Calliope

La belle dame sans merci speaks aloud through endless night,
torturing dreams, with powerful words and stentorian phrases.
Manifest visions bathed in unbearable grace and light,
destroying all direction, standing lost, in unfathomable mazes.

Fate plays a part, one that will never face denial,
as fear and courage eternally vie for ascendancy.
Conflict becomes valid, gifting strength in open trial,
but honest emotion wears no costume so fancy.

Blood, sweat, and tears stroll on avenues of gold,
unlikely heroines heralding as in ancient lore;
Sharp, competent knives cut through tales untold,
eternally shifting reality past the naked shore.

Drifting toward origin, bereft of mandate or cause,
finished, nay, abandoned, tied with a figurative bow.
No simple gift from muses to give comfort or pause,
save that all we need to know, we already know…..

~~ gigoid ~~

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The following older pearl is one I’ve probably used many times, as it contains much of the wisdom I use personally to guide my actions through life…. It’s all stuff I learned, one way or another, from my Dad, the Master Sergeant…. All of this could be considered to be ACTUAL wisdom, I think; it’s much more valid, and useful, than most of what you’ll find masquerading as such, and is certainly more than merely virtual wisdom…. because it’s all been tested by time, and found to be true….

From 9/30/2012:

Here are some true pearls of virtual wisdom from the acknowledged Grand Master of Science Fiction…… arrogantly solipsistic, delightfully honest, absolutely moral according to whim, and eminently useful in pursuing a full life of honor and joy…..

“The only real sin is hurting others unnecessarily. All other sins are made up nonsense…. (Hurting yourself is not sinful, just stupid.)”  — Robert Heinlein

“A desire not to butt into other people’s business is at least eighty percent of all human wisdom… and the other twenty percent isn’t very important.”
“You butt into other people’s business.  All the time.”
“Who said I was wise?  I’m a professional bad example.  You can learn a lot by watching me.” –Dr. Jubal Harshaw — Stranger in a Strange Land, Robert A. Heinlein

“Don’t store garlic near other victuals.” — from The Notebooks of Lazarus Long

“The two highest achievements of the human mind are the twin concepts of “loyalty” and “duty.” Whenever these twin concepts fall into disrepute — get out of there fast! You may possibly save yourself, but it is too late to save that society. It is doomed.” — from The Notebooks of Lazarus Long

“There is no conclusive evidence of life after death. But there is no evidence of any sort against it. Soon enough you will know. So why fret about it?” — Robert Heinlein

“The more you love, the more you can love — and the more intensely you love. Nor is there any limit on how many you can love. If a person had time enough, he could love all of that majority who are decent and just.” — Robert Heinlein

Lastly….. a statement that serves as an adjunct to Peruaosophy; indeed, it’s more that that, as it forms a critical part of the basic premises, upon which that philosophy was created…..

“Do not confuse “duty” with what other people expect of you; they are utterly different. Duty is a debt you owe to yourself to fulfill obligations you have assumed voluntarily. Paying that debt can entail anything from years of patient work to instant willingness to die. Difficult it may be, but the reward is self-respect.
But there is no reward at all for doing what other people expect of you, and to do so is not merely difficult, but impossible. It is easier to deal with a footpad than it is with the leech who wants “just a few minutes of your time, please — this won’t take long.” Time is your total capital, and the minutes of your life are painfully few. If you allow yourself to fall into the vice of agreeing to such requests, they quickly snowball to the point where these parasites will use up 100 percent of your time — and squawk for more!
So learn to say No – and to be rude about it when necessary. Otherwise you will not have time to carry out your duty, or to do your own work, and certainly no time for love and happiness. The termites will nibble away your life and leave none of it for you. (This rule does not mean that you must not do a favor for a friend, or even a stranger. But let the choice be yours. Don’t do it because it is “expected” of you.) ” — Robert Heinlein

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Today, as is sometimes the case when I arise late, and push a bit to get this done on time, I feel a bit scattered at the end…. which, I suppose, isn’t all that surprising, given the nature of what I’m doing….. It’s okay, really, because it means I’ve been focused, so the results should meet any of the loose standards to which I hold these Pearls…. If not, well, too bad, so sad, because, hey, it’s done, and we’re NOT going to do it over…. On that note, I should follow my own advice, and take my leave before it gets any riskier…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes, provided the NSA leaves me be….

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

Featured Image -- 2780

Savory, succulent sausages slowly simmering…..

Ffolkes,

Alliteration aside, this morning’s Pearl may get a bit chaotic…. My mind today is racing, driven by inner demons raised overnight by the specter of imminent events of a difficult nature. As a lifelong polymath, multitasking is no stranger, but, it’s never comfortable, or comforting, when the majority of what I perceive promises the necessity of painful resolution.

My sleep was delayed last night, by a late communication that disturbed my equilibrium enough to keep me up after eleven pip emma; hence, getting up at four ack emma, per my routine, was harder than I’d thought it would be…. That, of course, is not new, or unfamiliar, so I got up anyway, since the coffee was ready…. What the hell, today can’t be any worse than some of those I’ve had in my past, and already survived….

In defense against the looming depression that often accompanies events such as I’m currently experiencing, I’ll probably get a bit silly today; silliness, for me, is a very strong shield against feeling bad…. I suppose the lightheartedness required to be that way fills up all the available space in our hearts, and the less uplifting sort of emotions are unable to find a spot on which to place their ill-will.

Whatever the reason, it helps, when one is feeling sort of down, but not yet sunk, to find some silly, nonsensical activity to occupy one’s attention, until enough inner serenity has been garnered, and the peace of mind needed to effectively deal with the difficult emotional responses is present…. In essence, I squeeze my nose, until the loud honking has stimulated the inner clown, life assumes a more natural state, and I am able to once again “walk in beauty”….

Not everyone, I guess, has an inner Bozo on which they can depend, to lighten their spirit, and provide the emotional space necessary to be able to apply one’s mind and reason to whatever threatens our peace; I’m a lucky man, in that respect. Being a Bozo doesn’t always stimulate in others the highest regard for our demeanor, but, it’s better than pissing them off by taking advantage of them, as our government and churches so easily do with their sober, unsmiling outlook on life at large…. But, then, most of those involved in those two entities are more concerned with what they can get, than what they can give….

In trying to keep my own inner pain at bay, I see I’ve been pretty obscure in my introductory prose; I think I’ve gotten across how I’m doing, without providing more detail than would be prudent…. I see no need to share the more intimate details of my life…. I suppose I’m just trying to get across to y’all the message that whatever happens today is the result of a mind in turmoil, and will most likely reflect that inner chaos to some degree…. To WHAT degree, naturally, depends a lot on what I find to write about…. Perhaps if I were to try to think ahead about that sort of thing, I would have less of a chaotic time with this…. but, what fun would THAT be?….

Shall we Pearl?…. It seems Smart Bee is going to be cooperative today, so, to begin, let’s have a 3-fer…..

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

“Only through time time is conquered.” — T.S. Eliot, “Burnt Norton”

“Is this an out-take from the “BRADY BUNCH”?” — Zippy the Pinhead

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However many holy words you read,
However many you speak,
What good will they do you
If you do not act on upon them?

 — Buddha

Jimmy C. sez:

jimmy sez

http://www.sfgate.com/entertainment/carroll/article/The-ancient-fun-tradition-of-all-out-war-5582571.php

Ah! curst ambition! to thy lures we owe, All the great ills that mortals bear below.” — Teckell

Brilliant! Jon Carroll has always been a favorite columnist of mine, but, with this particular essay, he achieves a new level of insight. Actually, he already possesses the insight, and has found a style of expression that brilliantly demonstrates that knowledge with utter clarity. He puts his finger on the precise spot in human nature that not only has led to the most shameful parts of human history, but, in essence, is the same part of that nature that is currently sending the entire species on a headlong rush toward self-inflicted extinction as a life form on this planet….

None of the majority of people in this world who influence the course of events have any interest at all in making the necessary changes in their persona, their world-view, or their actions to stop ANY of it…. War, both religious and political, sexual oppression of women, and children, the creation of an oligarchic society, where the rich get rich, and the poor starve…

All of what is wrong with our culture can be laid at the feet of MEN; there are very few women who lose their humanity so thoroughly as the male of our species, who have littered out history with their crimes… those women who do so are completely influenced by the same set of insane inner principles, or lack thereof, as the men with whom they share the wealth of the resources they have usurped for their own benefit….

The guilt of these men is so plain, it’s hardly necessary for me to expand further on what Mr. Carter, and Mr. Carroll have so eloquently expressed above… Instead, to save any further ranting, which may conceivably drive the less dedicated souls away, I’ll finish this with an old-school collection of pearls, all of which should give a clearer picture of the assholes with penises who have dumped their psychopathy on the rest of humanity, for too long….

I swear, I’m gonna buy a gun, or two, and use them for their intended purpose…. With my training and background, I should be able to take out a decent-sized percentage of them before I’m overcome by their always superior firepower, and resources…. But, I’d feel better, and significant number of THEM would no longer trouble anyone else….

SIGH, it’s a nice thought…. but, let’s see what SB can find for us, for now, to provide us with a bit of release from these depressive, yet never overstated discussions of the evil assholes who have taken mankind hostage for so long….

“There is nothing wrong with feminizts that reincarnation won’t solve.” — anonymous male

(This is a perfect example of how male so-called comedians propagate and spread the attitudes about women that are designed to keep them subjugated and oppressed…. Objectify them, classify them as neo-nazi-like fanatics by using the ‘z’, and imply they are better off dead…. very funny….. NOT!)

“After Mike walked out, she decided to give up Men and raise chickens. Chickens didn’t stay out all night, or come home drunk, or sleep with your best girlfriend… And if they did… you could cut off their heads and eat them…” — Stephanie Piro, in “Women’s Glibber”

(I couldn’t help it…. I laughed, really hard….)

“Coolidge is dead.” “How could they tell?” — Dorothy Parker

(Just a little word from the other side of the gender aisle….)

“She did not think he deserved the compliment of rational opposition.” — Austin

(Good for her!….)

“I have little doubt that when St. George had killed the dragon he was heartily afraid of the princess.” — G. K. Chesterton, The Victorian Age in Literature

(See? The brainwashing began a long time ago, and is made stronger by such platitudes, that promulgate and spread the misguided attitude of male superiority…. with which they protect their actual feelings of inferiority….)

“Show feminizts how you feel — give them half a “peace sign.” — another anonymous male, from the same school of null-thought as the idiot quoted above….

(Nice guy, eh? Such a lovely attitude…. Makes me want to puke, it does….)

“If it weren’t for marriage, men would spend their lives thinking they had no faults at all.” — another idiot male

The last line is yet another example of how the lies about women, and how the male half of our species spread the attitudes and false beliefs, that women are not to be trusted, and marriage is just another way that women try to control men…. which is pure bullshit, as marriage is a ‘male’ idea in the first place, to make official their ownership of their woman, classifying them as property….

Okay, I’m mad, and distracted enough to bite something…. It’s probably a good thing for now that I’m living by myself, as I wouldn’t be the best of company just now…. I suppose as long as I stay out of church, and try not to think about politics, I can get through the day without getting arrested for aggravated assault on an idiot…. It’s a good thing the stores I need the most will deliver…. I’ll leave you with this little thought, which is just about as true as humans ever come to absolute truth….. especially when it comes to men….

“Small is the number of them that see with their own eyes, and feel with their own hearts.” — Albert Einstein

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I’m not certain as to why, but this poem of mine, written in prose format on Groundhog’s Day in 2012, seems to be appropriate for today…. It has the advantage of being mine; nobody else can be blamed for it, or for any of what I’ve created today…. It may seem egotistical, but, in truth, I do this to keep anyone else from blame…. I can be hurt, like anyone, at undue criticism, but, as an adult, I’m well able to take care of myself, and nurse my own internal wounds…. Whatever the case, I hope you enjoy it….

Gently Came a Wounded Child

But you shall not escape my iambics.

Soft, sinuous patterns of unearthly beauty
blithely commune with sinking stars,
as pale shadows of former virtue hover
near, ever clean, ever tolerant.
These unbidden habits are worn with age and care,
ready now for dissolution,
welcoming gladly the kiss of Death’s handmaiden.

Unknown to all, the child stands aside,
weeping for the lost days of youth,
days that now shall never be,
nor yearned for ever after.
Only darkness shall lay upon the landscape,
cold, hard, eternal.

Such then are the signs and portents
as we enter into the unknown future,
they are grave indeed.

Uncertainty will be our sole companion,
as the search for hope yields no result.
The lamentations of the gods
shall sound the elegy for Man,
who never learned to see the gift that was made,
so many echoes ago, in the hopeful past;
thus will we pass this plane of existence
as we came, baffled and afraid….

~~ gigoid ~~


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This old-school pearl was created in a frenzy of multitasking, while searching out the group of difficult-to-find quotes for the first section…. Individual pearls can be hard to find when the parameters are so strictly defined as today, so it took a while…. but, in doing so, this superior group of ancient and modern wisdom kept popping up, thus providing me with sufficient material for both sections…. Bonus!…. Enjoy, this is a good one, ffolkes….

“It was a favourite expression of Theophrastus that time was the most valuable thing that a man could spend.” — Diogenes Laertius (c. 200 AD)
— Theophrastus, x

“There’s an old saying that life begins at 40. That’s silly. Life begins every morning when you wake up. Open your mind to it; don’t just sit there, do things.” — George Burns (1896-1996)

“Be still when you have nothing to say; when genuine passion moves you, say what you’ve got to say, and say it hot.” — D.H. Lawrence

“All science, even the divine science, is a sublime detective story. Only it is not set to detect why a man is dead; but the darker secret of why he is alive.” — G. K. Chesterton, The Thing. CW. III 191

“A pun is the lowest form of humour, when you don’t think of it first.” — Oscar Levant

“In human intercourse the tragedy begins, not when there is misunderstanding about words, but when silence is not understood.” — Henry David Thoreau

“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” — Gandhi

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

Completing this Pearl is not merely a moral victory; it is a triumph of mind over matter…. Well, sort of…. It’s definitely done, and done as well as I can do this…. which probably isn’t saying all that much, but, we all have our own little fantasies, don’t we? Any who, since it IS done, I’m outta here for now, with an eventful day, no doubt, waiting for me to jump in…. Hasta la mañana,  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

Featured Image -- 2780

The White Rabbit’s waistcoat won’t fit….

Ffolkes,

As I closed my front door early this morning, on the way out to drive to work, a large white rabbit, dressed, oddly enough, in a gentleman’s morning attire, complete with, waistcoat, pince nez, and a huge watch chain hanging from the pocket, ran quickly past me, muttering what sounded like imprecations indicative of great agitation…. Well, being familiar with Lewis Carroll, and his pederasty fantasy child, I DIDN’T give chase, not having the time, or the slightest  inclination to attend any tea parties, experiment with mushrooms, or wage any battles of wit with a Cat, especially one as curmudgeonly as the Cheshire who gave Alice all that lip and grief….

Nor, as I’m sure you are aware, did I really see any rabbits this morning…. The first clue it was all fiction was in the first line, when I said I was driving to work…. which is, as you may know, something I no longer do for anyone but myself…. The second was the waistcoat, which, as you may have noted, was mentioned in today’s title, and as such, was NOT expected to be in the body of work today…. There are times, and this is one of them, when I suspect this process is not entirely under my control…. which begs the question, who’s driving this bus of bozos?….

The answer, of course, is that NOBODY is driving the bus, ffolkes…. I’ve given up, and nobody else can be persuaded to take up the gauntlet; I’ve even tried employment agencies, but, after a few stories from the few they’ve sent over got back to them, it’s been hard to find anyone willing to take it on…. I mean, it’s not like it’s a HARD job; it’s just the strangeness that gets to them, I suppose…. Well, that, and the uniforms; I shouldn’t have gone for the one with the epaulets on the shoulder; everyone thinks they look ridiculous, and hates to wear them….

Of course, I’ve had to let everyone go anyway, what with the recession and all. Even though the economy is on the mend, or so they say, (I think they really have no clue about what will actually happen; they just play the odds and guess…. like we all do since Cassandra died….), if I try to pay a living wage, it eats into my meager profits…. which are also non-existent…. All of which is why it’s a dead giveaway for me to say I’m about to drive off to work…. Hard to do with no car, and no job…

All of the above, of course, is just another distraction, a load of bilge-water, best if left to its own devices lest the smell get into your clothing…. I’m up quite late, for me, and suffering again from the usual complement of painful joints, hips, and the concomitant deleterious effect on my energy, and motivation…. I have to bust through the reluctance to move at all, in order to get past the point where it holds me down, or up, whichever direction I’m going at the time…. Then, well, let’s not get any more into that; it’s just encouraging me to whine….

Instead, I’m going to get on with what we have in store for today, whatever that might be…. Once again, your guess is as good as mine, as to what that may be, or look like…. So, we’ll use trusty method #4, and get on with it….

Shall we Pearl?….

“Acquittal of the guilty damns the judge.” — Horace

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

“Do not be angry with me if I tell you the truth.” — Socrates (470?-399 B.C.)

Yarrr! Avast, ye land lubbers! Stand your ground, and pay heed!….

The pirate phenomenon came to my town this weekend, in the format of a festival…. A consumer’s delight, where about a hundred or so craft, food, & beverage vendors, singing and musical groups, stage production companies, and otherwise normal folks get together dressed up like pirates, talking like pirates, and generally celebrating the pirate culture, such as it was….. It’s all pretty romanticized, considering the whole scenario of piracy as a way of life; all of the cool, frosty stuff is kept, and all the pain, misery, abuse, and poverty that went along with most of it is ignored….

The historical period when piracy on the high seas was popular, back a few hundred years, was a lot more brutal on the general public than most folks realize, but, hey, that’s America for you…. just look at the parts you want to see, and ignore what you don’t…. They did have their priorities straight, though…. The ATM machines were quite prominent, in three locations for the consumer’s convenience, set up by the food & beer area, and in the first row of craft & clothing vendors….

This all sounds a bit curmudgeonly, of course, which is a result of my thoughts AFTER attending…. I actually had a good time, without spending a fortune, and had some decent noms (food, for those of you not current on slang….)….. I had a sausage roll, Scottish style, just as greasy as the one I had in Scotland, and the shepherd’s pie looked pretty good, too…. Sadly, the only liquor available, other than beer, was rum, which does NOT agree with me at all, due to an unfortunate incident in college, where a quart of rum and I had some issues…. I still can’t smell the stuff without a nose curl….

“And here you thought your money was going to waste. Well, a Federal Appeals Court has ordered the FDA to determine whether drugs proposed for Lethal Injection executions are “safe and effective!” — Smart Bee

The festival is one of those uniquely American deals, a consumer celebration designed to bring tourist dollars into a town that is suffering badly from the economic shenanigans of the corporate elite, who have been busily raping the American economy since the days of Ronald Raygun and his band of banker, ex-USC grad buddies, who managed to spew so much BS around, people began to think it didn’t stink…..

I mean, how else can you explain any reasonable, rational person falling for the “trickle down” theory of economics, otherwise known as Reaganomics, a not-so-hidden attempt at outright theft by the government, if ever one was seen? Only sheer, bald-faced lying could have carried that one off…. But, then, remember some of Ronnie’s OTHER moments of truth?…. Such as….

“Trees make more smog than cars.” — R. Reagan

Any who, that’s all over now, except, of course, for the hundred or so years it will take to recover from it…. In the meantime, we have these kinds of distractions to keep us busy, and having fun doing stuff that makes no reasonable sense at all, spending massive amounts of time and money to pursue a lifestyle so hard and so insane, it no longer exists anywhere but Hollywood…. But, as the pictures show, it’s fun, for all ages, and there are a lot of interesting things to see and do….. Here are some pictures that will give an idea of the day…. Enjoy!….

“Like so many Americans, she was trying to construct a life that made sense from things she found in gift shops.” — Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.

June 13-15 2014 005“Somewhere between real and real real.” — Senator Dan Quayle pinpointing their location to reporters — aboard the Quayle campaign plane. — (reported in Wall Street Journal, 10/21/88)

June 13-15 2014 007Just WHAT is that octopus doing with that mast?…..

June 13-15 2014 010Spare change, anyone?…..

June 13-15 2014 013“Oh, God, look at that!”…..

June 13-15 2014 015A little tough to romanticize this….. though one does wonder how the bear fits into the story, eh?….

June 13-15 2014 017Some people have WAY too much time, and money, on their hands….

syphilisAn indicator of how strange and perverted the human race is…. This lovely character was the most popular costumed figure wandering the festival grounds, with just about every other person encountered wanting their picture taken with him….

Well there you have it ffolkes, my day hanging out with a segment of America’s most gullible consumers….. It must be the cynic in me that sees not only the romantic side of the whole phenomenon, but, its uglier, less acknowledged economic factors….. But, hey, I found a great deal on a really good dirk, in case I ever want to wear my kilt and heraldry badges….

“Cynicism is disillusioned idealism.” — Harry Kemelman

Let’s go on, shall we?….

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

The perfect poem to go along with the odd little rant in section one, here is the first stanza of T.S. Eliot’s epic poem, The Waste Land…. I have provided a link to a site where you can read the rest of the poem, which is quite long, but well worth the time and effort to peruse…. Enjoy!….

http://www.poetryfoundation.org/poem/176735

The Waste Land

FOR EZRA POUND
IL MIGLIOR FABBRO

I. The Burial of the Dead

  April is the cruellest month, breeding
Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
Memory and desire, stirring
Dull roots with spring rain.
Winter kept us warm, covering
Earth in forgetful snow, feeding
A little life with dried tubers.
Summer surprised us, coming over the Starnbergersee
With a shower of rain; we stopped in the colonnade,
And went on in sunlight, into the Hofgarten,
And drank coffee, and talked for an hour.
Bin gar keine Russin, stamm’ aus Litauen, echt deutsch.
And when we were children, staying at the arch-duke’s,
My cousin’s, he took me out on a sled,
And I was frightened. He said, Marie,
Marie, hold on tight. And down we went.
In the mountains, there you feel free.
I read, much of the night, and go south in the winter.

~~ T. S. Eliot ~~

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

Okay, I’ve made it this far, which is a surprise to me…. Soon after beginning, some severe arthritic hip pain began to throb in my lower back, and has resisted all attempts to curtail its advance…. Hence, this will be old-school, and just about as quick a pearl as ever was…. I hope….

“I might repeat to myself, slowly and soothingly, a list of quotations beautiful from minds profound; if I can remember any of the damn things.” — Dorothy Parker, The Portable, 1944

It is the heart afraid of breaking
that never learns to dance.
It is the dream afraid of waking
that never takes a chance.
It is the one who won’t be taken
who cannot seem to give.
And the soul afraid of dying
that never learns to live.

 — Bette Midler, The Rose


“Be of good cheer,” said Diogenes; “I see land.” — Diogenes Laertius (c. 200 AD) — Diogenes, vi

“If you tell the truth you don’t have to remember anything.” — Mark Twain

Teach him how to live,
And, oh still harder lesson! how to die.

— Beilby Porteus (1731-1808) — Death, Line 316

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

“If you can see a thing whole… it seems that it’s always beautiful. Planets, lives…But close up, a world’s all dirt and rocks. And day to day, life’s a hard job, you get tired, you lose the pattern. You need distance, interval. The way to see how beautiful the earth is, is to see it as the moon. The way to see how beautiful a life is, is to see it from the vantage point of death.” — Ursula K. Le Guin, Dispossessed

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

There it is, such as it is…. I’m going to go consume massive quantities of mind-numbing, obliviating drugs, & then take another look at the day in a few hours, once my attitude has been adjusted…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes, if they don’t catch me….

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

Featured Image -- 2780

No, no! File the DRY ones first!….

Ffolkes,

My brain informs me that today we will be taking the day off, at least from any sort of the customarily productive, intellectually stimulating activity that generally occurs here…. This isn’t to say that our usual acts of random idiocy are anything that should, or, for that matter, shouldn’t, be encouraged, or that I believe any of the claptrap that ends up on the screen…. Oh no, far from it…. It merely means that I’m lazy again, and trying desperately to figure out a way to get this done without actually doing any real thinking, an endeavor which, at the moment, hurts considerably….

Hopefully, in my casting about for a suitable opening, I haven’t sprayed any of the dross on your clothing, or offended you in any way; it’s way too early to deal with a lawyer, or hard feelings. Mornings such as these are a trial to me, methinks, mostly because of my sense of honor, and its true companion, integrity, instilled in me by the man who raised me, and not something that I have any choice about…. This honor of which I speak is of the ilk that has always forced me into acting in ways that puzzles many of my contemporaries, as I do things that the general run of folks don’t bother to do….

Like giving an hour’s work for an hour’s pay…. Like paying one’s bills as soon as possible. Like telling the truth, even when it hurts me, or someone else.  Like opening a door, or standing when a lady enters a room. Like taking off one’s hat when going indoors. Like showing respect for those older than me. Like doing all those things that lead one to self-respect; in essence, these acts are those that make one able to look in the mirror in the morning, and meet their own eyes….

Much of our society ignores these simple rules, a truism that has, to my way of thinking, led to many of the serious, life-threatening issues we face in the world today…. To be honorable, one must act in such a way that one’s own self-interests are secondary to whatever is needed to make others comfortable, or safe. Robert Heinlein’s definition of love includes this concept, when it says, “Love is that condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own.” When one is capable of extending that love, and/or the actions that go along with it, to the entire world, one may call themselves a gentleman….

It’s really not that hard to do, once one embraces honor and truth as their guidelines for life, making the firm determination to live as a gentleman….. a statement which inspires me, at this point, to include some Art…. I seldom do this sort of thing in the intro, but, today, it seems like the correct thing to do… So, with no further bilge from me, here are the Rules of A Gentleman…. To me, THIS is the blueprint for a life, well lived….
A Gentleman Is
On that note…. Shall we Pearl?…..
_____________________________

I’ve been lazy lately, as you know, and haven’t written a fresh religirant, or politirant, in days…. I’m also not going to burden y’all today with another long, rambling diatribe against the Asininnies, of all varieties, because, quite frankly, I’m a little burned out, and need to let my brain percolate without having to produce for a time…. As that is the case, we’ll be going old school today, with a few pearls I found over the last few days, all of which take a few nice, healthy swings at the priestly hierarchies, as well as at the numb knees who buy into their delusions…. Enjoy!….

“A conclusion is the place where you got tired of thinking.” — Matz’s Maxim

“A long and wicked life followed by five minutes of perfect grace gets you into Heaven. An equally long life of decent living and good works followed by one outburst of taking the name of the Lord in vain, then have a heart attack at that moment and be damned for eternity. Is that the system?” — Robert A. Heinlein

In English, “I beseech you, my brothers, _remain faithful to the earth_ and believe not those who speak of supernatural hopes. Poisonmongers are they, whether they know it or not. — Nietzsche, “Also Sprach Zarathustra”

“Evolution is as much a fact as the earth turning on its axis and going around the sun.  At one time this was called the Copernican theory; but, when evidence for a theory becomes so overwhelming that no informed person can doubt it, it is customary for scientists to call it a fact.  That all present life descended from earlier forms, over vast stretches of geologic time, is as firmly established as Copernican cosmology.  Biologists differ only with respect to theories about how the process operates.” — Martin Gardner, “Irving Kristol and the Facts of Life”,  — The Skeptical Inquirer, Vol. XII No. 2, ppg. 128-131

“He who speaks the truth must have one foot in the stirrup.” — Armenian proverb

“Do not be angry with me if I tell you the truth.” — Socrates (470?-399 B.C.)

“Don’t you think you’re a little over reacting?” — Adam to God
_____________________________

On March 18 of last year, I wrote a long, harsh religirant, with the main target being Mother Theresa, one of the most egregiously sanctimonious assholes of all time, in my opinion…. I’m not in a space right now to show that rant again just now, (though you could find it in the archives with that date in 2013), but, the poem I wrote after being stimulated by the rant isn’t bad at all, so here ’tis, such as it is….

Rejection

“Jesus loves me, this I know,
For the Bible tells me so…”
I’d be crying a river, I thought
if ever such crap I bought.

Sorry if it hurts your sense of style,
but, hypocrisy always gives me bile.
Being lied to accidentally is okay,
deliberate lies make me angry, and quite fey.

Oh, God, hear what I pray!
Keep me from your followers today.
Having to listen to so much that is wrong
makes me puke, before it makes me strong.

I don’t know why it isn’t clear to other folks,
which is alright, you know, different strokes.
But, why should that mean that they must
force me to believe, or fail in trust?

Spare me the lies, and the make-believe,
fairy tales are easier to hear, and to weave.
They give us a lesson which we can feel
but don’t pretend at all to be real.

Reality can scare us, that’s a given fact,
still, met with care it will leave us mostly intact.
Met without fear, standing tall and alone
Life will allow us to make it our own.

Folly beckons, and so many follow
mass delusions seem to me most hollow.
I’ll have to stick to my own chosen way
while so many go so sadly astray.

It’s lonely at times, it may seem sad,
but really isn’t, and I’m quite glad,
that knowledge is always stronger than fear,
year after year, tear after tear…..

~~ gigoid ~~

_____________________________

In keeping with today’s policy of anti-freshness, I offer the following link to an article in the Telegraph, a newspaper from the UK, now publishing online…. This was a photo gallery, with pictures of each of the comedians listed…. I thought it would be a nice little break in routine for around here, to send y’all off to somewhere to find a few smiles…. I’ve included some of my favorite lines below the link, to give an idea of what you’ll find there…. Enjoy, ffolkes, it doesn’t happen often around here….

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/culturepicturegalleries/9594011/30-great-one-liners.html

Groucho Marx (1890-1977): ‘I never forget a face, but in your case I’d be glad to make an exception.’

W.C Fields (1880-1946):’Start every day off with a smile and get it over with.’

Billy Connolly (24 November 1942-): ‘My definition of an intellectual is someone who can listen to the William Tell Overture without thinking of the Lone Ranger.’

Dorothy Parker (1893-1967):  ‘If you want to know what God thinks of money, just look at the people he gave it to.’

Mae West (1893-1980): ‘I used to be Snow White, but I drifted.’

Jay Leno (April 28, 1950-): ‘Politics is just show business for ugly people.’

Ambrose Bierce, author of The Devil’s Dictionary (1842-1913): ‘War is God’s way of teaching Americans geography.’
_____________________________

It’s actually a good thing I didn’t try to write anything original today…. The process of trying to put this whole Pearl together has proved THAT to me indisputably…. I won’t complain, though, because, hey, we’re done, right? Right… See you tomorrow, I hope…. if things improve, there’s a solid chance of it….

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

dozer3

Don’t forget to pack a sewage pump….

Ffolkes,

Powerful visions often pass through my mind, generally on their way somewhere else, thus making them merely an annoyance, rather than a joy. Such is life in reality, where we seldom get a proper chance to do just as we would like, even though we adjust and flex both our efforts, and our desires, in the quest to achieve whatever it is we are seeking to accomplish. This is because reality is like an amoeba, always changing shape and character, right before us, with nothing we possess that can affect it one way or another before it changes. All we have is the ability to change our minds, which, to those of us who study reality, is our most valuable tool….

This ability is the one saving grace we have in the face of reality, so it is a good idea to train it well. If not used, and guided, this ability, to be flexible in our thoughts, becomes weak, and can disappear altogether if neglected. The people to whom this has happened are doomed, to a life of misery and ignorance, because there is nothing new to learn for them, once they have abrogated the control of their own mind.

These poor folks are unable to adjust to the rapidity of modern society, and constantly yearn for “the good old days”, which in their minds are golden, but in reality are just gone. It’s sad, but true, that the greater majority of this particular country has done just that, and now allows the pundits on TV to determine for them just what they will think….. It’s much easier than making up their own minds, and easy is what they are all about…

Whoops! I didn’t mean to start ranting, but, it’s just so easy sometimes, when I start thinking…. That right there is the whole problem…. I start thinking, and things just get all intense, and I start taking shots at the parts of society that seem to thrive on stealing from the others with whom they live….. It’s all such a waste, in my mind, to see the potential talent and abilities that even the most average person possesses subverted, and/or deliberately perverted into either disuse, or misuse, all for the sake of keeping the BRC in their positions of power over everyone else.

Those who wish to be in charge of others, who want the power over others that goes along with being an elected official in this country, are, in my mind, clinically insane, and I wish sometimes I was more of a curmudgeon than I am, and that I owned a gun…. But, then, if I did, I’d feel compelled to use it, and my targets would be mostly found in one particular environment, a large city on the East Coast where those who are crazy enough to want that power gather to perform their arcane rituals of theft, misdirection, and aggrandizement.

It might take me a few weeks, and a couple boxes of ammo, but, I could make a serious dent in their numbers, given the time and space…. Too bad I’m disabled now, and can’t work up that much angst…. it might be fun….

Of course, then I’d be falling into the same frame of mind they cultivate in themselves, where they believe they are smart enough to actually make decisions for others….. It has always amazed me to see how much these men and women can delude themselves into thinking this kind of crap; it’s like they have a complete blind spot for other people, and what they might think or feel, and believe that what they want has the right to be paramount over what everyone else wants, or needs….. SIGH….. To make it all not just worse, but stupidly worse, they not only believe this nonsense, they are all-too-successful at getting everyone else to buy into it as well, and will use any persuasion they can think of, no matter how immoral, illegal, or just plain untrue it is, to assert control over the rest of society….

As the perfect example, I give you the attacks of 9/11/01, which the BRC used to perfection. to create fear, and even paranoia, in the public, thereby freeing them to mount their assault on the Bill of Rights. Without even considering the source of the money that paid for the attacks, or who might have had a part in planning it, let us note how the politicos ALL jumped on the security bandwagon, shouting for more restrictive laws to keep the terrorists at bay. They do this, while simultaneously pocketing all the extra money that now pours into the Homeland Security monstrosity of a bureaucracy, where it disappears down the black hole that such behemoths always create, sending piles of money into places where the pundits can more easily transfer it to their pockets…..

Well, I see that I’ve completely lost my way, and fell into a full-fledged rant, before even seeing any headlines, and before consuming sufficient coffee to prevent it….. I’d better take a short time out….

Okay, well, that didn’t help much; I’m still in rant mode, but, now I don’t have the physical acumen remaining to get any more of it out; it’s going to be one of those days, I think, and I might just go back to bed to avoid the worst of it…. Let’s see if I can get a Pearl done first. It should be fairly quick and easy…. I’ve already ranted, so I can go old-school for sections one and two, and I’ll find a good poem for section two…. as long as it all goes smoothly, I should be done, and back in bed within a couple hours…. Yay….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“I only touch base with reality on an as-needed basis!” — Royal Floyd Mengot (Klaus)
_____________________________

As noted above, this will be an old-school pearl. I’ve just about given up on giving Smart Bee a set of parameters to use in choosing the pearls for these groups; it seems to work out better when I let it go random, allowing fate, as it were, to determine the best pearls to include. Besides, that way, I can’t be fully to blame for what happens, and my insurance guys are all over that, so…. here is another set of harlequin pearls for your edification and delectation, hopefully….

“All art is autobiographical. The pearl is the oyster’s autobiography.” — Federico Fellini

“Don’t claim that you know everything- besides not being true, it’s very irritating to those of us who do.” — Smart Bee

“People are the nucleus of great idea that hasn’t come to be yet.” — Richard Pryor, American Comedian

“Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocrities. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence.” — Albert Einstein

“If you want to know what God thinks of money, just look at the people he gave it to.” — Dorothy Parker

“Much that passes as idealism is disguised hatred or disguised love for power.” — Bertrand Russell (1872-1967)

“We all carry it within us; supreme strength, the fullness of wisdom, unquenchable joy. It is never thwarted and cannot be destroyed. But it is hidden deep, which is what makes life a problem.” — Huston Smith

Though quite nice, this doesn’t quite make the point it is shooting for, so, I’ll look for one more to include that will bring it all home, I hope….

“A wise man, recognizing that the world is but an illusion, does not act as if it is real, so he escapes the suffering.” — Buddha

Perfect….
_____________________________

Well, it’s one of those days, alright…. I can’t make up my mind between two poems, so, you get saddled with them both… They’re both mine, and both kind of fit with how I’m feeling today, so, bear with me, ffolkes, it will be over soon enough…

Future Shocked:

Weeping, I wake;
waking, I weep, I weep.
I weep for the ages to be lost,
for the children never to be born.

Time comes calling, strident and spare,
nudging us toward the future with bony hands.
No pausing, no waiting, always away,
Frantic hearts unseen, unheard.

Spirits are dark, afraid.
And the Beast hunts, hungry and cruel,
seeking out the weak, and the foolish.

We all weep now…..

~~ gigoid ~~

Funny Bones

Dreaming the way home, lost, unseen,
from the dance, where
he felt so free, and clean.
Sorrow couldn’t find him there.

Waiting, filling up the hours, hoping,
some connection can be found
keeping busy as bees, coping.
Love creeps in, without a sound.

Fat days, skinny nights, passionate
visions of semi-conscious entities,
cannot seem to fully illuminate
or hide our innermost frailties.

Resolute, find the perfect sense, codify
simple rules with every breath
never waiting, anxious to modify.
fear nothing in life, not even Death.

~~ gigoid ~~

_____________________________

Today’s effort is going quickly, and fairly smoothly, for which I’m grateful, as I really don’t feel all too well, and need to do SOMETHING to make that change…. I only wish I knew what the proper SOMETHING might be… Ah well, I can put together an old-school pearl in my sleep, and often have, so, here is another one, with no parameters to get in the way of something really sharp and unusual…. I can hope, can’t I?….

“To give pleasure to a single heart by a single kind act is better than a thousand head-bowings in prayer.” — Saddi

“A worm, with very few exceptions, is not a human being.” — from Young Frankenstein

“Once you’ve tried to change the world you find it’s a whole bunch easier to change your mind.” — Smart Bee

“Corruptissima republica plurimae leges.” [The more corrupt the state, the more numerous the laws.] — Cornelius Tacitus, 56-120 A.D., Annals III 27

“A man who carries a cat by the tail is getting experience that will always be helpful.  He isn’t likely to grow dim or doubtful.  Chances are, he isn’t likely to carry the cat that way again, either.  But if he wants to, I say let him!” — Mark Twain

“Do not meddle in the affairs of wizards, for they are subtle and quick to anger” —  from Lord of The Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien

Ever eating, never cloying,
All-devouring, all-destroying,
Never finding full repast,
Till I eat the world at last.

— Swift (1667-1745)

All’s well that ends well, yes?….
_____________________________

Life has just entered a flux zone, and the future has become clouded in my vision; foreboding fills me, and I am afraid. But, I am my father’s son, and there is no question of giving in, so, I’m going to take today to try to figure out how to feel better. I’m tired of not….. Let’s see how this truncated version of a real Pearl came out….

Well, somehow, it all came together adequately, so I’m going to take the money and run…. See ya….

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest  Carole, Mark, and Theresa…
and everyone else, too…

When I works, I works hard.
When I sits, I sits loose.
When I thinks, I falls asleep.

Which is Why….


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

gigoid

dozer3

They’ve pardoned all the equestrians….

Ffolkes,

Did you ever have the feeling you’re stuck living in a Credence Clearwater Revival song? This morning, when I sat up, an old song of theirs popped into my head, first thing, and the lyric line “Oh Lord, stuck in Lodi, again…” is now playing over and over in my mind’s ear….. It wouldn’t be too bad, as it isn’t a bad song, but it won’t stop repeating that one line, endlessly….. Having been stuck in Lodi myself a time or two (I once had a girlfriend whose home town was in the hills above Lodi, in a little town in the Sierra Madre foothills, called Angel’s Camp….), I can attest that it isn’t the kind of place where one wants to spend a lot of time…. just another hick town in the boonies of California, whose residents didn’t even like John Fogarty….

You probably wonder how I can be so callous toward what is probably a group of nice folks, dismissing them offhand in such a cavalier fashion, not caring what my words may imply about innocent people…. Well, ffolkes, it’s called literary license, and is commonly used in literature to set up a joke, just like I did above. Of course, it is generally used to set up a joke that contains more than a mere dram of humor, but, one has to go with what is on hand, yes? I’m afraid that at this time of the morning, before coffee has worked its magic, that is about as humorous as it gets around here…. If I wanted to be really funny, I’d wait until the coffee kicked in, but I was trying to save a little time, and this is what happens…. I should know better than to try a short cut so early…

Is this stilted? Too formal sounding? It seems that way to me…. Of course, that’s me, and I’m not the best judge of what is appropriate at this time of day. I do try to keep from getting overly pedantic too early, but, that’s fairly easy, as it merely means keeping myself from ranting first thing… It’s the outrage that fuels such vituperation, which makes me feel all righteous and moral, which turns me into a pompous fool, a state that giving in to  righteous morality will always put me…. I don’t know why, but being angry at the immorality I see causes me to turn into a prig, at least from a writing standpoint…. Something about the formality of presenting logical arguments, and discussing serious subjects that makes it hard to stay casual in my writing style, or in my approach….. Probably, if I’d just break down and be vulgar, it would flow better…. Fuck it, I’ll try it…. eventually….

That isn’t to say that my style is always pedantic and pompous…. Hell, I’d have a hard time classifying my writing into any single category, as it tends to go all over the map, chasing off after tangential ideas, or attempting to follow some train of thought, as suggested by a group of old-school pearls. But, I do get pretty serious at times, especially when I’m ranting about the political or religious scenes we see every day, and have then a tendency to turn into a pompous old bozo…. An accurate one, but a bozo, nonetheless….

Once again, I’ve managed to blather on to such a degree as to find myself at the end of the intro section, without ever really saying anything useful, or even relatively coherent, at all…. I gotta say, it’s much less stressful when I let myself wander like this, without worrying overmuch about where it is going, or whether it is an appropriate start to the day’s effort…. Just letting it flow out seems to be getting it done, though not necessarily with any panache…. One mustn’t expect miracles, I guess, but, at least I’m not agonizing over something that seems to be unresolvable by ordinary means…. Since anything more than ordinary is too much to expect at this hour, I’m happy with whatever happens….. plus, it’s less fattening, or, so they claim…

Shall we Pearl?…..
_____________________________

It looks as though ranting may not be feasible today…. I just found a great quote, one that will eventually give me the impetus for a fairly good-sized rant on human nature, and the flaws that nature exhibits…. but, not today. I put the quote in place, and even got a decent first paragraph started, then started giggling, for some unknown, and apparently, uncontrollable reason…. I guess my spirit is rejecting all attempts to be serious today; sometimes, guys just wanna have fun, too. So, I’ll be putting together an old-school pearl, using the premise of the now-defunct rant I had begun, but, with an eye toward causing mirth rather than outrage…. Let’s see how it goes….

“Kids toot or poot. Men fart. Women pass wind. And Ladies never, EVER have gas.” — Smart Bee

Listen to the MUSTN’TS child,
Listen to the DON’TS
Listen to the SHOULDN’TS
The IMPOSSIBLES, the WON’TS
Listen to the NEVER HAVE’S
Then listen close to me-
Anything can happen, child,
ANYTHING can be.

— Shel Silverstein

“What do you call a short psychic who escapes from prison? A small medium at large.” — Smart Bee

“Is consciousness just a special form of hallucination?” — Frank Herbert

(Okay, so, not so funny, but, hey, it could be, if we put some makeup on it….)
(It’s also an interesting idea to contemplate as truth….)
(Hmm… If it IS truth, it would explain a lot of stuff about Congress, wouldn’t it?….)

“The SAME WAVE keeps coming in and COLLAPSING like a rayon MUU-MUU..” — Zippy the Pinhead

Okay, well, that’s just about perfect, for a five-star pearl, but I see it’s a bit dense…. Rather impenetrable, actually, so I’ll add a couple of clarification quotes….

“I don’t care what is written about me so long as it isn’t true.” — Dorothy Parker

“About them unfinished sentences and what they should be. And them subjects and objects which ought. Never no way should they not. Sometimes it is that they are and other times they aren’t. I took the Evelyn Woods Speed Reading Course and don’t know where I put it. Anyway, a sentence should always be.” — Smart Bee

Well, I don’t believe I can make it any clearer than that…. If it still isn’t gelling for you, don’t fret, it won’t be on the Quiz…..
_____________________________

Happy who in his verse can gently steer
From grave to light, from pleasant to severe.

— Nicholas Boileau-Despreaux (1636-1711) — The Art of Poetry, Canto i, Line 75

Aye, happy indeed, would he be…. Nothing new leaking out of my head so far today, so, we’ll go classic….

A Bard’s Epitaph

Is there a whim-inspired fool,
Owre fast for thought, owre hot for rule,
Owre blate to seek, owre proud to snool,
Let him draw near;
And owre this grassy heap sing dool,
And drap a tear.

Is there a bard of rustic song,
Who, noteless, steals the crowds among,
That weekly this area throng,
O, pass not by!
But, with a frater-feeling strong,
Here, heave a sigh.

Is there a man, whose judgment clear
Can others teach the course to steer,
Yet runs, himself, life’s mad career,
Wild as the wave,
Here pause-and, thro’ the starting tear,
Survey this grave.

The poor inhabitant below
Was quick to learn the wise to know,
And keenly felt the friendly glow,
And softer flame;
But thoughtless follies laid him low,
And stain’d his name!

Reader, attend! whether thy soul
Soars fancy’s flights beyond the pole,
Or darkling grubs this earthly hole,
In low pursuit:
Know, prudent, cautious, self-control
Is wisdom’s root.

~~ Robert Burns ~~

_____________________________

“A heart is not judged by how much you love but by how much you are loved by others.” — The Wizard of Oz

I spend a lot of time addressing what I call a flaw in human nature, without ever completely putting my finger exactly on the point I’m seeking to grasp, or to have y’all grasp, whatever… The point is, this flaw is one of choice, one that each person must decide within themselves, about how they will view life, and how they will approach living, especially concerning how they live with others, including animals, and our planet at large, which needs to be considered in any question of survival as a species. I see the flaw as most obvious in those people who end up in positions of authority, but it is a flaw that all of us have, to some degree, that concerns me, because it is the one that will ultimately seal our fate, as individuals, and as a species….

The above quote can be considered as the diametric opposite of the flaw, as it manifests in us. If one holds the above as true, then acting in a manner that will cause any loss or pain to another would be acting against that belief. In order to take advantage of another person, or thing, a human must first view that person, or thing, as being less important than they themselves consider themselves to be, by whatever standards are applied. By doing so, it objectifies the person, or animal, making it easier to detach emotions from anything done to them… In short, these people, who exhibit the flaw of choosing self over not-self, in all situations, consciously and deliberately decide to cause harm to others in order to achieve their own ends, and don’t feel any compunction, or guilt, about doing so, as they feel justified, by whatever rationalizations they have adopted….

This ability to disconnect from others is one of the most common features one observes in those people who make politics a career…. It is also commonly seen in certain professions, which, because of the key importance to people who need their services, tend to attract this type of personality, as such jobs offer many opportunities to take advantage of other people’s misery and trouble…. professions such as lawyer, preacher, doctor, judge, or any other areas that provide key services to people, that deal with situations that affect their lives and well-being…. These professions all provide sociopathic personalities with ample opportunities to carry out their agendas in life, which are focused on increasing their own control of resources, and power over other people….

Over time, these folks have gotten very good at what they do, and the whole world is now organized in such a way that almost everyone accepts the idea that there is no other better way to do things than the way they are being done… Any ideas to the contrary are either buried by those in positions of authority, or are ignored, or made superfluous by the construction of imaginary enemies…. Every time I hear from a government official that I should be afraid of someone who wants to kill us, or take away our rights and homes, I start to wonder just what it is they are trying to distract me from thinking about, or paying attention to….

You see, I make the automatic assumption, when ANY government source speaks, whether an elected official, or an official spokesperson, that that person is lying to me…. If the lies are not directly untrue material, then the lie is in what is NOT said, or in what is behind whatever they are speaking of, which, I always assume, means little or nothing beyond its intent to distract or befuddle me. Once that assumption is made, that the truth is not being told, then it becomes much easier to determine just what it is they are trying to do…. and, I find that what I see is never to the advantage of the public….

“DON’T STEAL – The government hates competition.” — Smart Bee

Actually, this sounds as if George Carlin might have said it; I know he had a short comment on why one couldn’t have the Ten Commandments displayed in courthouses; he believed it was because you couldn’t have all those exhortations against lying, cheating, and stealing around so many politicians and lawyers, as it would make for an uncomfortable work environment…. He saw exactly what I am talking about in society, and pointed it out clearly, and with sublime sarcasm, for all of us to see…..

Unfortunately, most folks don’t realize how close to the truth all of his assertions were, any more than most people know that the government lies to them on a regular basis, often, it seems, just to keep in practice. For those of us who DO see what is going on, it gets to be a challenge not to go around just slapping people left and right…. but, that doesn’t make any friends, and can lead to jail time if one isn’t careful…. Besides, nobody listens anyway, and even a two-by-four won’t make someone listen, if they don’t want to…..

I guess the Firesign Theater had it right, when they claimed we are all Bozos on this Bus….. It’s too bad that only clowns and comedians are the ones who seem to know what is going on in the world, because nobody votes for the clowns…. Hmm…. maybe we could get some of the comedians to run for office?…. It’s worth a shot…..

“He who laughs, lasts.” — Mary Pettibone Poole
_____________________________

I feel better, even if I already know I’m shouting into the wind…. and, that’s what this blogging is all about, for me. If the NSA don’t like it, fuck ’em…. Assholes….(Occasionally, I am influenced by an imp, sometimes dangerously…. Today, he advises me that if I really want to grab the attention of the NSA, I should put the two words together, so they can’t miss the allusion…. which, I think, is brilliant, so, here…. NSA-Assholes….)

I have a feeling I’ll be ranting more in the next few days; some of the stuff I’m seeing in the news is disturbing my equilibrium, and I’m going to have to vent some of it, so, be warned…. Let’s see how today’s effort came out…..  I guess I I ended up in a state where I COULD be serious, but, at least I tied in the humorous aspects of the serious material…. Not too shabby, all in all, and certainly worth a moment or two of anyone’s time and mental energy…. Well, I think so, and that’s what counts for this purpose, if not for yours….

Don’t worry, none of what you’ve read today is toxic, unless, of course, you are heavily invested in maintaining that all is right with the world…. You Pollyanna, you…. Take that!… And, that!…. Oh, sorry, got carried away by the urge to be in a cartoon…. I suppose I’d best be going now….. 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

Emerald green tofu makes better ballast…..

Ffolkes,
All attempts to establish routine are now considered futile; only random acts that resist routine will be allowed. And damn! I wish I could find a comfortable chair in which to sit…. Yes, I know that sounds stilted and pompous, but grammar is grammar, so whattya gonna do?

Any who, back to routine, or lack thereof….. Waking in the middle of the night, sobbing over a dream, is not what I’d call conducive to making a routine. It took me an hour, and two or four solid shots to get back to a state where I could fall asleep again, and consequently gave me a late start this morning…..SIGH…. (That’s a west-county Irish sigh, a long full breath, and slow exhale, accompanied by a sorrowful expression and a sad shake of the head….)

I should probably be getting used to this randomness in my life; not having to work, or to spend any significant time worrying about what other folks need or want, is both the greatest perk, and the most stinging curse of retirement. The outer world no longer has a say in when I do something, or even what I do. I make my own schedule, and thus have no one to blame if it doesn’t suit me…. which, I’m sure you can see, is a reflection of that blessing/curse relationship. Ah well, such is life….

Since I’m late, and will be later, given the upcoming events this morning, we should get to the searching portion of the process, as it is the most time-consuming part. So…. shall we Pearl? Anything has got to be better than what has been happening thus far…..

“A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step.” — Lao-Tzu, Tao Teh Ching
___________________________________

The Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord. — Old Testament — Job i, 21

I don’t know if it actually was Job who first said this particular phrase, but, given what God eventually did to him, all on a bet with Satan, it could have been…. If so, it goes to show, one shouldn’t go too long in the desert sun without finding some shade….

Here we have a statement that purports to provide reason for worship, a justification of why we should bow our heads in prayer to the heavens…. in short it says, “God is unpredictable, and omnipotent; it makes good sense to kowtow to Him…. he likes appeasement.” Well, maybe not, but you get the idea. We are theoretically in the power of a mad God, one who will fuck with his creation at the drop of a hat, just to entertain himself and the Devil over a wager.

He put Job through some outrageous times…. boils, plagues, genocide, hordes of locusts, deformity, God really did a number on Job, trying to see if his mind-conditioning would hold…. Since, according to the story, Job did hold out, and suffered all he did at God’s hand, and still wouldn’t curse him, we see that it did hold fast. What a dolt he must have been! No, I meant Job, but you may be right…. God surely acted like a dickhead in this one….

Sorry, but along about the third time God took everything away from me (had I been his chosen target instead of that stubborn boob, Job…), I would have started trying to figure out some way to fire back a few warning rounds, just to let Him know I’d had enough of that kind of treatment. A certain amount of leeway should be given, of course, but nobody gets more than three, I don’t care who they think they are…. By the act of persecution of Job, in my mind, He gave up any rights to worship, or even belief…. and He ought to know that, as he made me the way I am (according to the theory as given in Genesis).

I’d make this piece longer, but I think I’ve probably offended the Christians out there enough for one day…. also, the next section is a great poem, by my favorite poet, and I’d as soon you read it all, long as it is…. onward…..
___________________________________

This poem is rather long…. but I hope you read it all; it’s a great follow to the previous pearl, and well worth the time it takes….. enjoy!

A Tale Of The Thirteenth Floor

The hands of the clock were reaching high
In an old midtown hotel;
I name no name, but its sordid fame
Is table talk in hell.
I name no name, but hell’s own flame
Illumes the lobby garish,
A gilded snare just off Times Square
For the maidens of the parish.

The revolving door swept the grimy floor
Like a crinoline grotesque,
And a lowly bum from an ancient slum
Crept furtively past the desk.
His footsteps sift into the lift
As a knife in the sheath is slipped,
Stealthy and swift into the lift
As a vampire into a crypt.

Old Maxie, the elevator boy,
Was reading an ode by Shelley,
But he dropped the ode as it were a toad
When the gun jammed into his belly.
There came a whisper as soft as mud
In the bed of an old canal:
“Take me up to the suite of Pinball Pete,
The rat who betrayed my gal.”

The lift doth rise with groans and sighs
Like a duchess for the waltz,
Then in middle shaft, like a duchess daft,
It changes its mind and halts.
The bum bites lip as the landlocked ship
Doth neither fall nor rise,
But Maxie the elevator boy
Regards him with burning eyes.
“First, to explore the thirteenth floor,”
Says Maxie, “would be wise.”

Quoth the bum, “There is moss on your double cross,
I have been this way before,
I have cased the joint at every point,
And there is no thirteenth floor.
The architect he skipped direct
From twelve unto fourteen,
There is twelve below and fourteen above,
And nothing in between,
For the vermin who dwell in this hotel
Could never abide thirteen.”

Said Max, “Thirteen, that floor obscene,
Is hidden from human sight;
But once a year it doth appear,
On this Walpurgis Night.
Ere you peril your soul in murderer’s role,
Heed those who sinned of yore;
The path they trod led away from God,
And onto the thirteenth floor,
Where those they slew, a grisly crew,
Reproach them forevermore.

“We are higher than twelve and below fourteen,”
Said Maxie to the bum,
“And the sickening draft that taints the shaft
Is a whiff of kingdom come.
The sickening draft that taints the shaft
Blows through the devil’s door!”
And he squashed the latch like a fungus patch,
And revealed the thirteenth floor.

It was cheap cigars like lurid scars
That glowed in the rancid gloom,
The murk was a-boil with fusel oil
And the reek of stale perfume.
And round and round there dragged and wound
A loathsome conga chain,
The square and the hep in slow lock step,
The slayer and the slain.
(For the souls of the victims ascend on high,
But their bodies below remain.)

The clean souls fly to their home in the sky,
But their bodies remain below
To pursue the Cain who each has slain
And harry him to and fro.
When life is extinct each corpse is linked
To its gibbering murderer,
As a chicken is bound with wire around
The neck of a killer cur.

Handcuffed to Hate come Doctor Waite
(He tastes the poison now),
And Ruth and Judd and a head of blood
With horns upon its brow.
Up sashays Nan with her feathery fan
From Floradora bright;
She never hung for Caesar Young
But she’s dancing with him tonight.

Here’s the bulging hip and the foam-flecked lip
Of the mad dog, Vincent Coll,
And over there that ill-met pair,
Becker and Rosenthal,
Here’s Legs and Dutch and a dozen such
Of braggart bullies and brutes,
And each one bends ‘neath the weight of friends
Who are wearing concrete suits.

Now the damned make way for the double-damned
Who emerge with shuffling pace
From the nightmare zone of persons unknown,
With neither name nor face.
And poor Dot King to one doth cling,
Joined in a ghastly jig,
While Elwell doth jape at a goblin shape
And tickle it with his wig.

See Rothstein pass like breath on a glass,
The original Black Sox kid;
He riffles the pack, riding piggyback
On the killer whose name he hid.
And smeared like brine on a slavering swine,
Starr Faithful, once so fair,
Drawn from the sea to her debauchee,
With the salt sand in her hair.

And still they come, and from the bum
The icy sweat doth spray;
His white lips scream as in a dream,
“For God’s sake, let’s away!
If ever I meet with Pinball Pete
I will not seek his gore,
Lest a treadmill grim I must trudge with him
On the hideous thirteenth floor.”

“For you I rejoice,” said Maxie’s voice,
“And I bid you go in peace,
But I am late for a dancing date
That nevermore will cease.
So remember, friend, as your way you wend,
That it would have happened to you,
But I turned the heat on Pinball Pete;
You see – I had a daughter, too!”

The bum reached out and he tried to shout,
But the door in his face was slammed,
And silent as stone he rode down alone
From the floor of the double-damned.

Ogden Nash
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The following is an old-school pearl, with a specific thought in mind for you to deduce….. for the sake of everyone’s blood pressure, that specific thought will be revealed at the end…. I don’t usually, but thought I’d give a treat, just ’cause I’m a nice guy…. really, I am……

Child:  “Supreme Being, why is there evil in the world?”
Supreme Being (Sir John Gielgud in a Savile Row suit): “Oh, dear, I can’t remember, exactly. . . something to do with free will, I believe.”
— Terry Gilliam, _The Time Bandits_

“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

Halfway down the stairs
Is a stair
Where I sit.
There isn’t any
Other stair
Quite like
It.
I’m not at the bottom,
I’m not at the top;
So this is the stair
Where
I always
Stop.
— A.A. Milne

“Belief gets in the way of learning.” — Robert Heinlein, Time Enough for Love

“Truth, in the matters of religion, is simply the opinion that has survived.” — Oscar Wilde

“SANTA CLAUS comes down a FIRE ESCAPE wearing bright  blue LEG WARMERS.  He scrubs the POPE with a mild soap or detergent for 15 minutes, starring JANE FONDA!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

You may be asking yourself at this point, just what have I gotten myself into? Well, relax, it’s no big deal….. all of the foregoing is intended to lead you to the following….. which WILL be on the quiz…..

An it harms none, do what thou will. — Wiccan Credo

Alternate answer, also correct:

There’s little in taking or giving,
There’s little in water or wine:
This living, this living, this living,
Was never a project of mine.
Oh, hard is the struggle, and sparse is
The gain of the one at the top,
For art is a form of catharsis,
And love is a permanent flop,
And work is the province of cattle,
And rest’s for a clam in a shell,
So I’m thinking of throwing the battle —
Would you kindly direct me to hell?

— Dorothy Parker

“Birth, school, work, death.  About sums it up, I think.” — Smart Bee
___________________________________

For a rush job, this didn’t come out too badly…. it will have to do, anyway, so let’s get on with 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!

Sitting amid the clutter, thinking of marigolds….

Ffolkes,
Someone’s been fussing with the universe again, reality is all messed up this morning. Everything is nothing, and vice versa. It’s enough to make a grown man weep. Boo hoo…..

Okay, there, that’s done. I wouldn’t want to have started before spitting that out; someone could have been injured from the flying innuendo…… things here may seem a bit on edge, or jumpy, today. Pay it no mind, it’s just my depression trying to worm out of the hole I stuffed it in. It could be an ugly scene, so I’m going to go do as much as I can before it catches on to what I’m doing…..
___________________________________

“If a person offend you and you are in doubt as to whether it was intentional or not, do not resort to extreme measures.  Simply watch your chance and hit him with a brick.” — Mark Twain, Advice to Youth Speech, 1882

Mr. Twain seems to be advising youth here with his tongue firmly planted in cheek, but is nonetheless spot on with his technique for dealing with those idiots who manage to get under our skin with their displays of offensive ignorance. It is what may be called a reasoned response, and the punishment can be considered proportionate to the offense. Resorting to extreme lengths to discipline in cases like this can come back to haunt you later; society tends to look unfavorably on the maiming, slicing, and dicing of its citizens, even when so obviously provoked, and deserved. And leaving them alive and seriously injured puts a strain on the health care industry to treat them for their wounds, or to perform the 24 hour nursing care for any human vegetables your justifiable anger may create. So temper thy temper with just a bit of tolerance, and only give such fools their immediate desserts, not their final meal……. you’ll feel better for having shown such restraint, while still purging any lingering resentment…..a clear win-win…..
___________________________________

“A doctrine insulates the devout not only against the realities around them but also against their own selves. The fanatical believer is not conscious of his envy, malice, pettiness and dishonesty. There is a wall of words between his consciousness and his real self.” — Eric Hoffer

Aha!  Now it makes sense. I have always wondered how some of these political types can go around, day after day, uttering the same stupid nonsense that they were spouting the week before, in spite of the evidence brought forth that shows it to be incorrect, ill-considered, or a bald-faced lie. They act as if nothing at all has been said, and will even accuse the questioner of bias or discrimination, just to deflect and distract from the subject they wish to avoid. It is as if they completely block out anything said to them, or about them; they act as if what is presented has no existence, and has no bearing on the issues at hand.

This is how Newt Gingrich can continue to deny that his serial adultery has no bearing on his politics, and does not indicate any moral inferiority. He seems to think that it’s okay to turn it around, and blame his infidelity on his wife, or on the one with whom he cheated. It’s how Mitt Romney can casually flaunt his wealth and indifference toward the 99%, and believe that it won’t cause resentment to eat away at his support system, and cause the disillusioned to turn away. It is how Congress thinks it is acceptable to hold meetings on the issue of birth control with a committee that has no women sitting on it, and no women scheduled to give evidence. It’s how Rick Santorum can make outrageous statements that are parroted from the zealotry of the religious right, and still believe that he is popular with anyone else, or that he stands an even chance of stealing the nomination away from the bigger dogs.

Worst of all, this is how the great unwashed masses who vote can, time after time, continue to believe the bullshite that is handed to them, and elect these idiots again. To my way of thinking, this is behavior that wouldn’t be out of place in sharks; they have no memory to speak of, and not much ability to learn. But every four years, the people of this country go forth, and show their support for people who lie to them on a consistent basis, and who have no interest whatsoever in improving the lot of anyone but themselves. It’s not exactly the strongest evidence of intelligence I’ve seen… and is indubitably the strongest evidence of mass stupidity I can think of…..

“It is discouraging how many people are shocked by honesty and how few by deceit.” — Noel Coward

“There is no point in getting angry, but there is a stupid malignity to all this that does try one’s patience.” — Anonymous
___________________________________

FIGHTING WORDS

Say my love is easy had,
Say I’m bitten raw with pride,
Say I am too often sad —
Still behold me at your side.

Say I’m neither brave nor young,
Say I woo and coddle care,
Say the devil touched my tongue —
Still you have my heart to wear.

But say my verses do not scan,
And I get me another man!
— Dorothy Parker

No comments needed here. I enjoy Dorothy Parker’s work; it always has a bit of self-deprecating humor to it, yet shows off her immense talent by it’s mere casualness. She was indeed, unique…..
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“Words are, in my not so humble opinion, our most inexhaustible form of magic, capable of both inflicting injury, and of remedying it.” Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter:The Deathly Hallows, J.K. Rowling

I’m going to go out on a limb, here…. I sincerely believe that should society survive the next 200 years, the seven books comprising the Harry Potter saga will come to be considered required reading, as the greatest work of literature created in the latter half of the 20th century. Quotes such as the one above will be commonly held wisdom. as will the quote below. I also think that the character of Severus Snape will be the most widely known and admired fictional character from the same period. The performance by Alan Rickman is flawless; wickedly intelligent, ambitious, and always conscious of his flawed humanity, he brings powerful emotion to a toweringly tragic figure.  Snape will join Hamlet, Othello, and the like as the latest in a long line of tragic heroes, and deservedly so.

The performances of all the perfectly picked cast were well-done, and guided to reflect the characters described in the books. Ralph Fiennes brings a certain chilling insouciance and style to the character of Voldemort, making him more accessible and human, but a human who LIKES being evil.

The translation of the books into movies was well done, thanks to the determined efforts of Ms. Rowling to keep the movies true to the spirit of her work. With only minor changes to the plot lines to satisfy the limitations of movie-making, all eight of the movies were able to bring the fun, the wonder, and the magic of her stories to millions of people who hadn’t read the books.

This was a challenge of no little stature, as the art of movie-making turned its technological eye on making people believe in the magic onscreen. This is harder than it sounds, but with the new power of computer animation and advances in film technology, the challenge was met, and the world now has the entire epic in two formats, written and digitized. I predict that it will remain atop the list of the world’s favorite stories for centuries to come……

“Pity not the living, Harry, pity the dead. Especially, pity those who live without love.” — Albus Dumbledore, ibid
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“Don’t SAY things. What you ARE stands over you the while, and thunders so that I cannot hear what you say to the contrary.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson — Social Aims

In a section above, we spoke about the nimrods who are currently showing off their ignorance on center stage of the nightly news, and how they are oblivious to their own flaws. This famous little snippet from Emerson should be brought to their attention, as it describes perfectly the plot-line of the play in which they find themselves acting out their parts. It could save them, and us, a lot of heartache and wasted time, as well as money.

I am, however, unwilling to wager on whether they will pay any more attention to this than they do to the bald truths they are already ignoring…. I have a feeling that they’ll just look at it, scratch their heads, and walk away from it; that’s their usual response to any truth that doesn’t mesh with their agenda…..
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Well, my schedule is all screwed up, thanks to age-related kinks in the system…. my activity level nears the frenzy level around the first of the month, as I try to dole out a bit of gelt to all those nice folks who say I owe them. It’s a catch-22, for sure, as they dun me for what I’ve already consumed, yet try to get me to consume more of whatever it is, before I’ve finished paying for the old stuff.  Ah well, life in the fast lane, I suppose….. all will be well, in time….. in the meantime, y’all take care out there…..


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

gigoid

Dozer

Kowabunga!

Alternate methods of removing recalcitrant pianists….

Ffolkes,
Many years ago, even before I got married & raised kids, I had already made it a habit to never go out on New Year’s Eve. It always seemed a sucker’s bet to me, and I never had all that great a time at any parties I attended. I took the attitude of “I don’t go our when all the amateurs are out” and would stay home & celebrate the new year fairly quietly. It’s kind of like when Harry Truman said  “I never got in trouble over what I never said.” For me, New Year’s Eve  was when I never had a problem I didn’t cause myself, by over-consumption of alcohol. I have no regrets about that, intending as I do to continue the policy tonight, and every other New Year’s I have left in me. I don’t believe I’m missing much, as I also don’t get terribly wrapped up in the holiday frenzy anyway, and everybody out on the streets is either drunk, partially drunk, or insanely cheery about the passing of another day. Far as I can tell, on every January 1 in my life, the sun came up just like it did yesterday, and as it will tomorrow. The times between hold the only differences, and we are the ones who determine how that boat floats…….let’s get on with the fun…..
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A few random thoughts on the meaning of insanity, and by implication, sanity…….all came from one dive. Pearl after pearl on the same subject kept presenting itself for my perusal, so after a few, I just gave up & collected them. So here they are, all with a bit to say about those among us who perceive reality from a whole different place than you or me…..

‘What garlic is to salad, insanity is to art.’ — Augustus Saint-Gaudens (1848-1907), Reminiscences

If sanity were dollars I’d be bankrupt.

“I come from a long line of Southern psychotics and an environment where madness is currency and conversation is blood sport.” — Elizabeth Ashley

According to figures from the Justice Department, the average rapist serves only 5.2 years on jail, and the average murderer serves only 8.6 years. By contrast, the average time served for possession of LSD is 10.1 years, and many Americans are serving mandatory minimum sentences of 20 to 25 years for possession or sale of marijuana.
(Insanity comes in many guises…. your choice as to which is real, and which is delusion….)

Avoid reality at all costs!

And who (in time) knows whither we may vent
The treasure of our tongue? To what strange shores
This gain of our best glory shall be sent
T’ enrich unknowing nations with our stores?
What worlds in the yet unformed Occident
May come refin’d with th’ accents that are ours?
— Samuel Daniel (1562-1619) — Musophilus, Stanza 163
(Psychosis is rooted in fear, and fear also assumes many masks…..)

I feel like one
Who treads alone
Some banquet-hall deserted,
Whose lights are fled,
Whose garlands dead,
And all but he departed.
— Thomas Moore (1779-1852) — Oft in the Stilly Night
(An accurate description of the onset of depression…..)

Why ask me? I’m just visiting reality.

We now return you to our regularly scheduled program…..
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To get people to think they are thinking begets friendship, whereas actually to make people think begets resentment. There is no level so low to which people will not stoop, even honorable people, to avoid the difficulty of thinking.

So true, so true…..it fascinates me at times, this reluctance on the part of most folks to using the one and only evolutionary advantage they possess over other creatures. Compared to other animals, we’re not particularly fast, nor very strong, and our teeth and nails are not very good weapons compared to those of a domestic cat, for just one example. We need to wear clothing to protect ourselves from our own planet’s weather extremes. We rely on other species for our sustenance, being unable to create it ourselves.

In the final analysis, we’re pretty fragile, physically speaking; even a soft blow administered to the correct point can cause death. Hell, our bodies have more than one design flaw; how about how our food and air processing facilities? They cross each other at a critical junction, at the throat, and frequently cause problems that can have mortal consequences. Our elimination process and sexual organs also cross paths, in a manner of speaking; the outlet for the former is right next to the points of ingress and egress of the latter, depending on gender. From a strictly engineering viewpoint, it’s not a very good design.

It’s clear that there is little chance of humans ever dominating on the basis of physical characteristics; most animals are much better equipped for that. Our mind, our imagination, our perception of more than merely physical energy in the universe, these are our advantages over other creatures. We have the ability to remember the past in the present, and use those memories to extrapolate the future.

This is an incredible evolutionary leap, one that allows humans to readily turn their perceptions of how things work into tools that enable us to alter reality to suit our wishes. We can’t really fight our way out of a paper bag, and our defenses against predators is weak in comparison to other animals. But the power of our minds is sufficient to neutralize all physical and environmental advantages of the other inhabitants, and gives mankind the means to not merely survive, but to thrive and dominate.

So, the question remains: why are so many people so averse to using their minds? Well, I don’t know, for sure. I could make some guesses, and they might even be accurate. But it really doesn’t matter, because the only creature who can cause us to change ourselves, is ourselves. Nobody can make us do anything we don’t want to do. Most folks learn the power of the word “No” at a young age (age 2 is customary for most folks), and become so enamored with it, it becomes their default position for anything that is, or even appears to be, ‘difficult’. Sad, but true…..and wishing won’t make it go away. I can only wish I were smart enough to figure out how to get folks to see the light, before its too late, and the bulb burns out for good…..
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When vice prevails, and impious men bear sway,
The post of honor is a private station.
— Joseph Addison (1672-1719) — Cato, Act iv, Sc. 4

Aye, ’tis a lonely station as well. I  find it very rare to meet anyone today who places any credence in the concept of honorable behavior. If acting honorably is considered at all, it is well after avarice, pride, bigotry, ignorance, or self-interest is used as a first attempt. I find very few people I meet who live honorably; too many shortcuts used to obtain their desires, too many times ignoring evil, thereby encouraging it. Too may times people make their decisions on how to act toward others by first considering their own self-interests, never considering whether or not the other person has, or is even entitled to the same. Most interactions between people have become a contest to see who can manipulate the other into giving them their desires, regardless of consequence, or the ripple effect.

People just don’t seem to care anymore about other people. They wander through their lives in controversy, never knowing that they are their own worst enemy. Sometimes, it’s enough to make me pull my hair out, and for me at this stage, that’s not a good thing; what I have is long, but there is less and less of it every day.

Ah well, maybe I’ll completely retire, and stop paying attention to anything. No phone, no TV, maybe a little music. The radio news is probably not too toxic in small doses, and there’s always the option of making use of the On/Off switch…… SIGH……I’ve been an optimist for most of my life. It’s getting really tough to maintain a positive outlook, in the face of the mounting evidence that we are in a cultural stage best described by Robert Heinlein when he called these the “Crazy Years”, a time when the news resembles a self-edited periodical produced by the mentally ill…..Entropy is rising, and chaos is near, I’m afraid…..stay alert out there…….

“Better contraceptives will control population only if people will use them. A nuclear holocaust can be prevented only if the conditions under which nations make war can be changed. The environment will continue to deteriorate until pollution practices are abandoned. We need to make vast changes in human behavior.” — B. F. Skinner, Beyond Freedom and Dignity
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I’ve had this dialogue more than once; how ’bout you?

It: Can I ask you a question?
Me: You just did.
It: Ok, can I ask you two questions?
Me: You just did.
It: Ok, can I ask you another question after this one?
Me: You’ve already asked three questions without permission, why bother asking for the fourth?
— Michael Constant

Funny, isn’t it? How some folks believe they are entitled to “just a moment of your time.” I’ve had the above conversation, or one like it, on several occasions in my life, and each time my astonishment grows. If a person, in trying to be friendly and/or helpful, gives up their moments on every occasion asked, they are willingly enslaving themselves. Once one has the reputation of being the “go to guy” or “the ask her, she’ll know, or she’ll do it girl” they may as well forge and wear their own collar. Duty, which is the only valid reason for which a man acts, can a burden, yes. But it is a burden that is willingly shouldered, because the honorable man chooses his duty; no one may do it for him. Once chosen, duty will be fulfilled. But the choice is purely subjective.

However, this doesn’t stop other folks from trying to get us to do what they want, and they will use lies, innuendo, shame, defamation, guilt, or whatever manipulative tool they think they need, to get us to do their bidding. If one is not firm and self-reliant, they will find themselves never having enough time to meet their own needs, busy as they are with the needs of others. Best all-around to just stop them in the beginning, making it clear that one will make one’s own choices, and will not give up their time without good cause, as judged by themselves, and no other……
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If I don’t drive around the park,
I’m pretty sure to make my mark.
If I’m in bed each night by ten,
I may get back my looks again.
If I abstain from fun and such,
I’ll probably amount to much;
But I shall stay the way I am,
Because I do not give a damn.   — Dorothy Parker

I don’t really have a lot to say here. Dorothy Parker is one of my favorite people from the early 20th century. She was a semi-militant feminist in a time when it was still unfashionable, a description that is perhaps due more to her unique personality than to any cause. She was herself, period. She refused to be anyone else, and was not afraid to say so in no uncertain terms, and with undeniable elegance and style. She had a rapier wit, and used it unsparingly on the rich, famous, and whomever else she felt needed a dose of it. I’m glad she lived, and glad to have knowledge of so great a spirit as inspiration…..
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I must say again I like this new format for the POVW (Pearls of Virtual Wisdom); it gives me more to write/rant about than the old way. I guess that’s a good thing. If nothing else, it’s caused an increased output, and that’s good. I’ve finally figured out the best way for me to make a little money at this, and hopefully can gain a little breathing space in the constant war with the economy. The only drawback I’ve noted so far is a tendency to ramble on and on……I’m writing about what I believe in, so the passion is coming out with it, increasing quantity at the minimum. I’m working hard to maintain the quality……hope I’m doing okay at it……any who, that’s enough for one morning. Y’all take care out there……


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

gigoid

Dozer

Kowabunga!