After a certain amount of time, reality becomes hard to hold on to with a sure grip. Stuff happens. (Don’t ask….) And when that stuff is happening, our grasp of what we thought was unchangeable grows tenuous, at best. Most folks just breeze right through these moments, never realizing that their entire universe is mere seconds away from crashing about their ears. These are the fortunate ones. For those of us who regularly battle with reality to keep it in even a semblance of normalcy, these moments are terrifying challenges, fraught with the danger of imminent death of life and the universe as we know it, or at least, indigestion……
The brain is broken this morning. I tried to use it earlier, and got no response at all. Now, I sit down to write, and you see the result…. Pathetic. Indigestion, indeed. I’ll give me indigestion…. hell, I do that on a regular basis anyway, just by reading the news; it takes no special effort. Try to convince a broken brain of that though….
I’m not sure how to proceed. I’ve never really had to deal with a full break before; there have always been some peripheral functions that remained intact. But this seems to be a complete system-wide shut down, and I’m not sure if it is a hardware or software problem, so it makes trouble-shooting a bit of a facer, what?
Sorry, been watching English mini-series’ movies of Lord Peter Whimsy’s mysteries, and I’m still speaking in English drawing room comedy language…. quite the thing, don’t y’know? It’s so very…. British…. Such a wonderful vehicle for sarcasm and comedic facial expressions, and all of the characters are archetypal representations of the various English types…. to the manor born, the butler, or “gentleman’s gentleman”, the vicar, the blacksmith, the sexton, the farmer, etc. And they all wear the most sensible shoes….
Well, as can be seen, things may wander a bit today, so I’d best start wending my way toward the end….. the beginning will have to cope on its own at this point; I can do no more for it, and will just let it die a natural death….. let’s go Pearl….
Fate steals along with silent tread,
Found oftenest in what least we dread;
Frowns in the storm with angry brow,
But in the sunshine strikes the blow.
Writing about Murphy’s Law can be a delicate, tricky process, since the mere use of his name is generally enough to draw his attention, something all of us learn to avoid at an early age. At least, all of us who retain any sanity at all have learned to avoid his ministrations, except when forced to accept them. So, writing about his place in the scheme of things can take on the aspect of a nightmare, a terrifying one, one that not only wakes one up, but remains real when awake. The only possible way to avoid this is to make the piece you are writing as glowingly positive as you can….
One doesn’t write about how little Murphy’s presence is hated; we point out how his benign humor keeps us humble. We don’t tell how his latest escapade has put us back several years in our plans for life; we acknowledge his wisdom in keeping us with our nose to the grindstone. And we certainly don’t complain about how much of an asshole he is, or he will most certainly turn what we write into the biggest pile of crap that ever was assembled in one place.
Ah, fuck it. I hate the asshole. His perverted sense of humor has caused more heartache for humanity than Hitler. He thinks he is a celebrity, like Santa Claus, or the Easter Bunny, but his degree of fame, or, more accurately, infamy, is more on the order of The Swamp Thing, or Freddy Kruger, without the advantage of their cultish chic.
If there were any part of reality as it exists that I would change, it would be to remove Murphy’s head from his shoulders, and consign him to one of the deepest parts of hell, where he would forever be subjected to just those kinds of incidents that he is so fond of perpetrating on the unsuspecting members of society…. Bloody prick…. I know that all cultures have their Murphy…. he may be called Loki, or Kokopelli, or some other name, and even may be counted as a god. But, fuck him anyway, he’s an asshole; I don’t have to like him…. and I don’t..
Popular consensus says that reality is based on popular consensus. — Smart Bee
“Believe nothing merely because you have been told it… Do not believe what your teacher tells you merely out of respect for the teacher. But whatsoever, after due examination and analysis, you find to be kind, conducive to the good, the benefit, the welfare of all beings — that doctrine believe and cling to, and take it as your guide.” — Buddha
This idea is almost unknown in Western society, and if you require evidence, just look at the TV Guide for this week. Every minute of every day the airwaves are filled with blatant attempts to influence what people think about, what they buy, or should want to buy, how to relate to other people, or who they should vote for in the next election. I don’t think there are more than one person out of a hundred thousand who has an original thought in their head, one not generated by some excited announcer giving them the latest way to waste their time and money.
In addition to the wasteland that is TV, we have religion, always prepared to jump into people’s lives and tell them how they are doing it wrong, and how the only way to get to heaven is to buy into the product they are selling, thereby handing over the keys to their own minds, and checkbooks. If one looks at it objectively, it’s a pretty good gig, this preacher business.
All you have to do is be able to tell people what you think is true with a straight face, and stand back and watch the money pour in. Hell, anybody with the chutzpah and the patter can become a preacher; it doesn’t even require a license, though it does help to file the certificates and forms that make it so your church doesn’t have to pay taxes. That’s always a bonus item in favor among the truly religious.
“Writing science fiction for about a penny a word is no way to make a living, If you really want to make a million, the quickest way is to start your own religion.” — L. Ron Hubbard
L. Ron was as good as his word…. He was talking to Robert Heinlein one day (they were old friends, having attended Annapolis together in their youth….), and complaining about how his science fiction wasn’t selling as well as Bob’s. He made Bob a bet, that he could start a religion, one that had no basis in reality outside his head, and could become richer than Croesus without having to lift a finger…. Bob took the bet, and L. Ron wrote “Dianetics”, the book that is now the basis for the Church of Scientology.
This “religion” has become a reality, with millions of members worldwide, all of whom are firmly convinced of the truth of what is in their bible; in reality, their bible was a load of crap nonsense that came straight out of L. Ron’s head, and has no actual relation to anything in the real world…..Imagine, a religion based on Science, without a single number or equation to be found anywhere in its precepts. I find it to be one of history’s finest jokes, and the shenanigans of the constituents of the “church” provide me with endless entertainment…. Brilliant!…. And, of course, just desserts for those who have adopted such an asinine philosophy, all based on a joke bet….
“It’s hard to decide if T.V. makes morons out of everyone or if it mirrors Americans who really are morons to begin with.” — Martin Mull
And God said: “Let there be cats!” and He was promptly ignored. — Smart Bee
I don’t often write about cats. I’m not sure why that is, because I love them just about as much as I love dogs. Mankind, in his history on this planet, has engaged the help and companionship of purpose (i.e., life…) of several of our mammalian relatives. Dogs, cats, horses, pigs, sheep, cattle, all have agreed, passively or actively, to join us in the struggle to exist here on Earth. We all provide different life skills that we possess to the mix, skills that complement each other, affording us the strength that arises from group effort. In essence, we have contracted with each other to provide services for actions that we cannot accomplish alone.
Each of those animals who chose to live with us, sharing our food and campfire, shelter and company, have their own motivations for doing so, not all of which are self-serving. In fact, I would say that the reason that dogs and cats often appear to have for their continued relationships with us can mostly be attributed to love. People develop very close, affectionate relationships with those two types of creatures, and the love we feel for them is obviously returned. No other explanation makes sense for explaining why a dog or cat will save a human’s life, by warning of a fire, by attacking an aggressor, or why they will come to us and offer comfort in times of sadness and pain.
Cats are perhaps more independent in their relations with us, but their love is continuously demonstrated, even in those actions that apparently are rude, such as their ability to ignore us when they so desire. I see those times as being the moments when they are defining the limits of their personal space, their need to maintain dignity at all cost. It’s a cat thing. Sometimes their love only shows in the fact that they continue to stay with us, and deign to accept our attentions. After all, in ancient Egypt, cats were worshiped as gods, and I don’t think they’ve ever forgotten…. Bless their pointy little ears…..
I can’t imagine living without dogs and cats. I prefer to have both as companions; often the relationship that develops between the two diametrically opposed species is deep and caring, and observing how they learn to get along with each other is a constant lesson that our political “experts” would benefit from learning.
Before I was summarily dismissed from my last relationship, Noah and I lived with a cat who firmly believed that Noah was his big brother. The cat, named Tony, would follow Noah around, play with him, and preferred to sleep with him at night (I have pictures….). He knew Noah was old, and took care to treat him gently (he was a big, powerful cat…. about 17 lbs, and no fat….). When Noah was struggling to walk upstairs, Tony would walk behind him, swatting at his tail end, spurring him to get up the steps….
It broke my heart when Noah and I were told to move, never to see Tony again. Noah would often wander around the new house, looking for something, then come and look at me as if to ask where Tony was…. it was tough, believe me, and still hurts…. Which goes to show,I like animals much more than I like most humans…. and for good reason….
“One can’t complain. I have my friends. Someone spoke to me only yesterday.” — A.A. Milne’s Eeyore
Aye, indeed, one can’t complain. Though I live a life of solitude, I am not often lonely. I have my friends, who, though they live elsewhere, are ever as close as the phone. These are the kind of friends of whom I know that even if they call me at 3 AM, or if I would call them at such an hour, they wouldn’t say, “Why are you calling so late?”, but rather, “What do you need?” I count at least 8 people among those I know who fit that definition, and that is wealth indeed….
One of them called me yesterday, just to chat. In turn, I called one of them, who was celebrating her birthday (quietly, as those at our age are wont to do….). Both calls were enough human contact for me. I don’t miss work, or having to deal with the general run of human interaction at a high level; I have to admit, this whole retirement thing fits right in with my preferred style of living. I get to decide how much I deal with people, and that is another form of wealth that is seldom counted…. a true freedom, the freedom to say “no”…. We first learn the power of “no” around age two, but we seldom actually think about how powerful a word it is….
“No, I don’t want to do that…” now has much more meaning and strength when I say it, because I know that it is all my decision. Of course, this makes me fully responsible for what happens, but that is true anyway, and can thus be discounted as a motivating factor. It just helps me to be more careful in the decision-making process. “No, I won’t….” No, you can’t…” All of these options now have more force in my life, and it is a heady sort of power. It isn’t surprising that so many folks, as they get older, take more and more advantage of this power; it is perhaps their first time at feeling in control of their lives….. Unfortunately, this often leads them into becoming negative in their outlook, which causes other problems….
But, for me at least, it’s nice to be able to tell the world to go take a hike now and again. And it sure makes practicing to be a curmudgeon easier!….. No, no, no, I won’t!….. 🙂
It’s only cheating when you get caught! — Smart Bee
One never knows when a rant will strike…. I almost cruised past this, as I have innumerable times when I’ve seen it before. But then I stopped for a moment and thought about it…. and got angrier and angrier the more I considered it.
My anger arises from my obstructed desire, of course, which, in this case, is the desire to see the morality of mankind become, shall we say, less self-serving, and leave it at that? I’d like to see more honesty in the world, as I see the lack of it, or worse, the active denial of it, as the worst affliction society suffers. The willingness of the wicked to lie and cheat, and the willingness of the general populace to condone it by their indifference to those lies, is the root of almost all the other problems facing our species.
This idea, that it is okay to cheat if nobody is looking, has been adopted as truth by most people. Even the most apparently incorruptible people will cheat to achieve their ends, using the rationality, or the charity, or the innate rightness of their goals as justifiable reasons for the dishonesty in action. It’s called fighting fire with fire, and while it may work when dealing with conflagrations in a forest, the analogy does not translate accurately to the raging fires in human society.
The acceptance of this concept, of the inherent value of cheating, is based on a concept from martial arts, the practice of deception, of movement, of strategy, of information. In a war, or battle, being able to misinform one’s opponent of one’s true disposition and plan is invaluable as a strategy. Control of information is vital in war. Those who do not learn this practice can never be successful in battle, for they have lost before beginning.
Modern politics, the art of war against the people by their rulers, is rife with this strategy. Politicians routinely lie, not just to the people over whom they wish to rule, but to those who rule with them. The entire system of political strategy in this country is based on who can get the voters to believe the lies they are handing out, while simultaneously accusing their opponents of using the self-same tactics. Whichever one convinces the most fools wins the chance to loot the public treasury for the next few years, when we are again subjected to the cycle of lies and cheating….
Ah hell…. it’s a nice looking day outside, and here I am ranting about assholes who aren’t going to change anyway…. something wrong with that picture, so I guess I’ll go do something more constructively fun than this… though I have to admit I feel better…. It always helps me to call Mitt Romney an asshole…. makes my whole morning….
This turned on me a bit…. it became something of a small ordeal, but, I won…. I’ve fought through to the end of another morning’s ramblings, and it looks like a pretty far-ranging ramble indeed…. Well, such as it is, here it is…. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..
Sometimes I sits and thinks,
I just sits.