Up the creek, paddling madly….


“It is easy in the world to live after the world’s opinion;
it is easy in solitude to live after our own;
but the great man is he who in the midst of the crowd
keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude.”

~~ Ralph Waldo Emerson ~~

Mt Tam

Mount Tamalpais from the northern SF Bay….

Hajime…. My journey into the depths of the machine yesterday turned into the expected nightmare, in which it seemed reality was determined to furnish me with numerous assaults upon my sensibilities, testing my resolve, as well as my control, both of which proved to be sufficient, if only just, to prevent leaving any corpses behind me as I wended my way across the desolate landscape, in a desperate search to find one redeemable instant of time. No luck there; this travesty of our former democratic republic’s process of finding justice is as broken as the rest of our society; I witnessed nothing to indicate that “justice” was the goal of any of it.

Added to the apparent lack of intelligent purpose in which they insist on pursuing, my physical issues decided to chime in, making it essentially impossible for me to participate with any degree of comfort, much less any ability to maintain my cool; fortunately, a compassionate drone used some bureaucratic expertise to excuse me for the day, which is the good news. The bad news is, it was merely postponed to a later date, so, I must contemplate having to do this again in a month, unless I can talk my doctor into writing a letter to get me out of it…. SIGH… I suppose, given the potentially disastrous outcomes that were both possible, and, showing strong odds of occurring, the way it came out is more good news. The bad part is having to deal with it again later…. Life in Dystopia, I guess…

I was so morose by the time I finished dealing with all that, I decided to blow off the rest of the day, then went out & treated myself to a good meal at a good restaurant, complete with cocktails & wine…. It helped, but, has complicated this morning’s agenda with the resultant hangover…. Go figure, eh? Ah well, ’twas well worth it….

All the above, though it wanders about in much confusion, was pointing to this instant in time, where I inform y’all of having to rather ruthlessly trim today’s (semi-) complete Pearl, into the abbreviated version you will find below. In fact, all you’ll see today are the pearls I collected for the old school section, and the two most excellent examples you found atop and at bottom of this section…. In fact, the closing pearl for this intro makes a rather accurate assessment of my day yesterday, so, at least we have that to hold onto as something positive to note… It ain’t much, but, it don’t take much to make me happy…. In my current state, I’ll take it….

Shall we Pearl?….

“Mit der Dummheit kaempfen Goetter selbst vergebens.”

[Against stupidity the very gods contend in vain.]

~~ Friedrich Schiller, “The Maid of Orleans”, Act iii, Sc. 6 ~~



Naked Pearls

“As it is written….”


“A single event can awaken within us
a stranger totally unknown to us.
To live is to be slowly born.”

~~ Antoine de Saint-Exupery ~~


“And can you teach me to how to dance real slow?”

~~ Don McLean, “American Pie” ~~


“The world is what it is, no less and no more,
and therein lies its entire and sufficient meaning.”

~~ Edward Abbey ~~


“Change can be exhilarating, joyous, liberating.
But it can also be terrifying,
because, in a deeper sense,
you are questioning your very identity and sense of value.
But take the risk.
It’s worth it.”

~~ Dee Hock ~~


“Do not seek death; death will find you.
But seek the road which makes death a fulfillment.”

~~ Dag Hammarskjold ~~


“If I don’t meet you no more in this world
Then I’ll see you in the next one.
Don’t be late”

~~ Jimi Hendrix ~~


“There will come a time when you think everything is finished.
That will be the beginning.”

~~ Louis L’Amour ~~~



Considering the multitudinous handicaps with which I saddled myself today, I’m pretty stoked at just getting this done, which it is. Done, I mean. In fact, it’s so done, I’m outta here, so I can pull it together enough to, maybe, get another one done for tomorrow. Odds on that are running about even, so, we’ll see how it goes. I hope y’all had, and have, a better day than described above… I guess that wouldn’t take much, would it? Okay, so, I also hope you have a day you can enjoy…. Me, I’m goin’ back to bed awhile…. then, we’ll see what reality has to offer up for today…. See ya, ffolkes….

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.


“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

Featured Image -- 13855

À bientôt, mon cherí….


Significant signs of sincere drivel….


“The truth you speak has no past and no future.
It is, and that’s all it needs to be.”

~~ Richard Bach, “Illusions” ~~

beacon hill park Victoria

Beacon Hill Park, Victoria, BC

Hajime…. In retrospect, there was nothing to be done; if there had, I’d have done it. Instead, here I sit, again searching for some small inspiration to get us to our desired destination. In the ineffable, incomparable way of life at large, nothing doing, at least, not so far. Since waiting around for it to show would be rather presumptuous (for it may never show at all), I suppose I’ll need to find some other source for material to put here. That, of course, is also a hit or miss issue, but, given the circumstances, it could be worse. How, I am not sure, but, I know Murphy, and, believe me, if given half a chance, it WILL get worse.

In order to avoid any such conundrum this morning, I’ll use the new degree of ruthlessness I seem to have found, and cut this intro without mercy. It won’t take long, and actually is quite fun, if one doesn’t fight it. All you need to do is put down your adult beverage, take a deep breath, and read on. As for my part, it works pretty well, all things considered. How does it work? Easy, I push this button, and we’re gone…. Watch….

Shall we Pearl?….

Mit der Dummheit kaempfen Goetter selbst vergebens.

[Against stupidity the very gods fight in vain.]

~~ Friedrich Schiller ~~

~~ The Maid of Orleans, Act iii, Sc. 6 ~~


Lenny Cohen

Leonard Cohen

Image from http://www.pinterest.come via Google Images

One of yesterday’s commenters mentioned today’s featured artist; it’s been a while since we’ve included his work, so, here is a pretty thorough collection of many of his most popular pieces, all in one place. Enjoy!….


The Best of Leonard Cohen






Sandclock .jpg

Originally, I had a quote picked out for today, to lead into a discussion of the ubiquitous corporate oligarchy as it now exists in our world. However, reality intervened, to prevent any such fresh ranting today. Instead here is a more light-hearted discussion from early in 2014 to fill in for today. It’s a fun one, so, have fun…..

From 1/30/2014:

“We’re not into science fiction because it’s _good literature_, we’re into it because it’s _weird_. Follow your weird, ladies and gentlemen. Forget trying to pass for normal. Follow your geekdom. Embrace your nerditude. In the immortal words of Lafcadio Hearn, a geek of incredible obscurity whose work is still in print after a hundred years, “woo the muse of the odd”.” — Bruce Sterling, addressing a convention of SF writers

A few days ago, I experienced an epiphany regarding the solutions we need to find to the issues of global warming and climate change…. This statement is one that, though not exactly what I’m talking about, is in the right ballpark…. Finding answers to what is happening in the real world has been part of what science fiction writers have done, peripherally, for many years, in the sense that the stories they write explore the concepts involved in ways that demonstrate the questions, and can, hopefully, point the way to finding the answers we now need…

There have been many, many stories…. full length novels, novellas, short stories… all written over the last two hundred years or so, that talk about the most critical issue we now face, to wit: the climate changes produced by our insane pollution of the atmosphere. There has also been a lot of speculation and talk among the people who do the writing, and those who write about them, all discussing possible scenarios for possible futures….. Somewhere among all that talk and discussion, there MUST be an idea that we can use to turn the tide that we have so foolishly turned against us…..

In other words, in a metaphorical sense, we need to go out into the realms of fantasy and imagination, to find the elves, so we can benefit from the wisdom of their counsel…. Even though I already know what they will tell us…. The elves always give the same counsel…. we will need to find a Hero, who can step forward to assume the Quest to save mankind from the folly of his own greed and ambition…. Metaphorically, this is absolutely correct…. what it will translate to in real terms is yet to be seen, but, something needs to be done to find an answer, and soon, for the time we have to accomplish anything that will work is growing smaller rapidly….

“There is something inside all of us that yearns not for reason but for mystery… not for penetrating clear thought but for the whisperings of the irrational… not for science but for wizardry disguised as science.. not for rationally founded influence but for magic.” — Karl Jaspers

In the meantime, rather than ranting at you to get out there and try to find an elf, who can then lead us to his where his people have gone, far over the Western Sea,…. I’ll put together an old-school pearl, with some good advice and/or some snarky comments about the assholes who got us to this point in the first place….

“For me, all I can do is spit in the eye of my fears by living each day with as much passion and commitment as possible to what truly counts, such as love and justice. To give the into the fear and hopelessness would be to declare defeat, something I am not ready to do while there is still the will to struggle.” — Lawrence Paradis

“You shouldn’t think about *how* we’re doing this. You should ask yourself, ‘why?'” — Penn Jillette

“To the uneducated, an A is just three sticks.” — Pooh’s Little Instruction Book, inspired by A. A. Milne

“I like living. I have sometimes been wildly, despairingly, acutely miserable, racked with sorrow, but through it all I still know quite certainly that just to be alive is a grand thing.” — Agatha Christie

“A little folly is desirable in him that will not be guilty of stupidity.” — Michael de Montaigne — Book iii, Chap. ix

“Education is an admirable thing, but it is well to remember from time to time that nothing that is worth knowing can be taught.” — Oscar Wilde

“Must not all things at the last be swallowed up in death?” — Plato

See? There is a perfect example of why I seldom make precognitive assumptions about a particular pearl, especially BEFORE it is constructed…. This is a grand pearl, but, no snarky comments to be seen…. ‘S’okay, it doesn’t need them….



Blithely Untitled

A poem came to me today, willy, nilly,
along with a sharp blow to the head.
Since it left me feeling just a bit silly,
anything that rhymes should lessen the dread.

Manifesting destiny into a small, insidious group
we push on toward sanity, concentrating hard.
Full engaging moments spent navigating the loop
shall ever make a difference to victims found in the yard.

Still corpses of creatures, straight out of nightmare
fill up the corners of our tortured minds.
While ever saddened, the iconic male, most debonair,
gazes softly, ironically, at all the mutual interest he finds.

Moronic public statutes compel outbreaks of sanity,
responding to momentary impulses toward inducing peace.
Still, the motions get completed, in fertile stages of inanity
while the bulk of our inmates can find no surcease.

Reluctant motivation to continue is unbound,
striving to ascertain how far there yet remains to go.
No precognitive guesswork will make any less of a sound
to soften the final strains, or teach us to truly know.

~~ gigoid ~~




Naked Pearls

The best wisdom at affordable prices….


“A wise man first determines what is within his control;
all else is then irrelevant.”

~~ Epictetus ~~


“Between the vision and the act lies the shadow.”

~~ T. S. Eliot ~~


“Joy is wealth and love is the legal tender of the soul.”

~~ Robert Green Ingersoll ~~


“Always we hope
Someone else has the answer
Some other place will be better
Some other time it will all work out.
This is it.
No one else has the answer
No other place will be better
And it has already turned out.
At the center of your being
You have the answer;
You know who you are and what you want.
There is no need to turn outside
For better seeing.
Rather abide at the center of your being
For the more you leave it
The less you learn.
Search your own heart and see
the way to do is to be.”

~~ Lao Tzu ~~


“we can never be born enough.
We are human beings;
for whom birth is a supremely welcome mystery,
the mystery of growing:
the mystery that happens only and whenever
we are faithful to ourselves.”

~~ e. e. cummings. ~~


“…and remember you’re a Man, not just god,
and for you there aren’t and never will be any easy answers,
only questions, and no reasons,
only causes, and no meaning,
only intelligence, and no destination
and no kindly magic smiling down from above,
and no fires to goad you from below,
only Yourself and the Universe
and what you make out of the interface between the two equals.”

~~ Keith Laumer, _Night of Delusions_ ~~


“On SECOND thought,
maybe I’ll heat up some BAKED BEANS
and watch REGIS PHILBIN..
It’s GREAT to be ALIVE!!”

~~ Zippy the Pinhead ~~



Since Zippy finished off that most excellent old-school pearl with such panache, I don’t think I’ll need to get too fancy here at the close. Rather than make any such faux pas, we’ll just note, it’s done, and we’re done for today. We will, with great anticipation, see y’all again tomorrow, as long as the Universe holds together. It’s got a solid record of doing so; most likely, we’ll see y’all then….

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.


“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch


À bientôt, mon cherí….

If my dilettante calls, take a message….

Invariably, when I’m up at 0530, my mind turns to mush, or, more accurately, is mushy upon arising at that early hour….. Since I’m fond of oatmeal, this state isn’t all that unpleasant…. just slow. The addition of some butter, brown sugar, and a little bit of milk, in a figurative sense, puts me right into the correct mood for Pearling, so, all I have to do now is decide where I can find any such metaphorical condiments at this hour…. Real ones, sure, they’re right there in the kitchen, but, metaphor is a bit hard to come by so early in the day. I suppose I’m going to have to go out and milk the metaphorical cow…..

Ouch…. Well, that’s what happens when I try to write before consuming any coffee…. Milk the metaphorical cow, indeed! I walked away from that paragraph, to go get the coffee, and take a moment for morning worship,  😉  then saw that phrase when I got back. Imagine my chagrin, which, albeit strong, wasn’t enough to make me delete it… I’m leaving it there as an object lesson in humility, (or maybe that’s a lesson in abject humility….), and as a reminder to never try to compose anything before focus has been achieved, or at least courted….. Silly ass…. Someone so accustomed to the kind attentions of Murphy should know better than to tempt him with such foolishness…..

Now that I’ve come to my senses, as close as I dare approach at this hour, I find myself at somewhat of a loss to know where to go from here…. Three paragraphs in, and confusion is already rampant; it could end up being one of THOSE days, in which case, I might as well just go back to bed now. It’s too bad, really, that I’m such a moralist; it makes it hard to slough off when I want to hide from reality. Try as I might, I can’t bring myself to duck when reality swings at me; I’ll throw up a block, if I can, but ducking is cowardly, it seems to me, so I just stand there and take the first shot. I’m tough, though, and I can usually get right back up…..

Since my upbringing seems to have cornered me into finishing today’s Pearl before giving up, I guess we should get to it. It’s been great of late, now that the pressure to get done has been mitigated by not having to travel anywhere to post this material. Every morning, I get up to a fresh template for the Pearl, and proceed to fire up Smart Bee for the morning dive, in order to fill up each section with brilliant quotes and ironic humor, just waiting for me to dress it up for consumption.

I’ve been very happy with the freshness of the material that has come out of this process lately, which, given Murphy’s ever-ready presence in my life, should probably make me nervous. Thankfully, though, he doesn’t seem to mind it if I write, as long as I mention him every day….. I guess he wants more press in his old age…..

Wait, no, I didn’t mean that! You’re not old…. You’re just age-enhanced! That’s it….. Ffolkes, I think I’d best be quiet now, and get on with today’s business, before Murphy decides to take offense….. Shall we Pearl?…..

“Life is not separate from death. It only looks that way.” — Native American Proverb (Blackfoot)

Right! What a wonderful pearl! Not only is it short and sweet, it’s just packed with insight and implied wisdom…. In my mind, when I read it, I get a vision of a fireworks fountain, spewing light and beauty into the air, in blazing, colorful sparks…. A bit fanciful, but that’s the impression I got upon seeing it the first time….

You see, I’ve been thinking a lot of late, about Death vs. Life, due most likely to the fact that my own time to face that specter is approaching, seemingly ever more rapidly, as it tends to do later in our lives. When we look back over the time we’ve had on this Earth, the time left seems so short….

But, it isn’t really any shorter, nor, I’ve come to believe, is there anything to fear from Death’s approach. We all get to live just one day at a time…. Nay, not even so much…. we live one moment at a time, and we can’t make it go faster, or slow it down. So, worrying about what might happen in the future is a waste of the moment, and not worth the effort of doing so.

In addition, I’ve come to the conclusion that what happens after Death comes for us isn’t anything to fret over, either, because, logically, death is merely a transition phase, from one level of perception to another, with the other being a reality for which we do not possess the ability to perceive, lacking some organ, or some mental awareness that is needed to do so…..

There is no evidence at all that consciousness, as we understand it, persists on this level of reality after the body has died. On the other hand, there is also no evidence at all that it does not continue to exist, on some other level that we are not aware of; add to this the simple fact that in our universe, according to physical laws, energy, in ALL of its forms, cannot be destroyed, only changed in form. The Law of the Conservation of Energy has been proven many times, and is not a matter for dispute. When one considers consciousness, i.e., the MIND, as a form of energy, it makes perfect sense to assume that it changes forms when we die, but is not destroyed. It is the only logical answer, as far as I can see….

The wise women and men of the Blackfoot tribe apparently were aware of this, as well as being aware that the universe exists as a duality, with each characteristic of reality having its opposite complement, that defines and proves its very existence. We see the world in these opposites, so it is very easy to be fooled into thinking that what we see is the true nature of that reality…. but, it isn’t, because those two opposites are all part of the same grand scheme of things, and cannot be separated, not in reality…. only in our minds, where we separate them in order to comprehend them….

“Even a fool is thought wise if he keeps silent, and discerning if he holds his tongue.” — Murphy, courtesy of Smart Bee

Why does he do that? Why wait until I’ve spouted off for almost a thousand words before dropping these little bombs? Ah well, fuck him, and his bloody white horse! Everything I said above is the absolute truth, in my mind, so Murphy can just go f__k  himself. Even though this aphorism is also true as the day is long, I don’t think I’ve gone so far astray that it applies… so, in spite of the Irish asshole, we’ll push on….

I have yet to discern any reason that can logically, or even speculatively, answer the question of why we don’t remember any of the time we’ve spent dead, or whatever it’s called when we’re busy not living on this plane of existence. You know, before you were born? And after we die? All of that is a long time, and since it is logical to assume the energy that makes up our consciousness is still in existence when we aren’t alive, in the classic sense, then it is also logical to assume that our minds are busy doing….. something else.

What that may be, well, your guess is as good as mine…. But, some folks’ guesses aren’t worth the paper they’re printed on…. I doubt seriously that the typical version of Heaven is a likely scenario, nor is Hell…. I regard those as just the unscrupulous concepts created by the BRC and/or priestly hierarchies to try to control the populace, not having any basis, or evidence to support them, in reality. In fact, there is ample evidence that shows otherwise, if one is open to perceiving it…..

I figure what Robert Heinlein said once is the best way to look at it… “There’s no evidence that says we live after death; there is also no evidence saying we don’t. Soon enough, you will know, so why worry about it now?” (That may be slightly paraphrased, but the idea is precisely accurate….)

Ah well, this subject, due to its nature, is one that we, or I, could ramble on about all day, and, from the looks of things, almost have done so. Life and Death are popular subjects, understandably enough, and since we all are experts, there’s no lack of stuff to read about it; everybody’s talking, as Glenn Campbell said. But, since we have the rest of this Pearl to finish, I guess I’ll let this go for now….. Just keep in mind, ffolkes, Death isn’t anything to fear, because, if nothing else, Life itself is proof of our continued existence after it is gone…. Think about it….

“The adventure is over. Everything gets over, and nothing is ever enough. Except the part you carry with you.” — E. L. Konigsburg

“One never realizes how much and how little he knows until he starts talking.” — Louis L’Amour

The poetry of Ms. Plath is relatively new to me, having somehow escaped my notice for most of my life. Now that I have more time to feed the Elephant’s Child, I’m glad I found her…. Here is another brilliant, torturous vision from her incredible mind…..

Witch Burning

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

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

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

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

~~ Sylvia Plath

Okay, so here’s the deal…. I went a bit overboard above with today’s rant on Life and Death, so we’re going old school for section three…. This group of pearls turned out to be one of my favorite kind…. It’s slippery, it’s deep, and it’s a challenge to find the punch line, yet each one could stand alone for a discussion, were I so inclined….. Perfect…. The punch line is, of course, left as an exercise for the Gentle Reader, with the motivation today being outsourced to Sesame Street…. If you think you’ve found the piece of wisdom buried in the coalition of ideas, give Grover a call at the soda shop; he is usually in there between 9 and 11 AM….. He’ll give you the prize for finding today’s punch line, right over the phone….

Mit der Dummheit kaempfen Goetter selbst vergebens.  [Against stupidity the very gods fight in vain.] — Friedrich Schiller (1759-1805) — The Maid of Orleans, Act iii, Sc. 6

“If you can walk, you can dance; if you can talk, you can sing.” — a saying from Zimbabwe

“I respect faith, but doubt is what gets you an education.” — Wilson Mizner

“As far as we can discern, the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light of meaning in the darkness of mere being.” — C. G. Jung

“There is no harm in praising a large dog.” — Smart Bee
(Let this one roll around in your head a while…. it grows….)

Finally, to put things into the proper perspective, I give you our final pearl of the day…. Say ‘howdy’ to Grover for me, will you?….

“I’m meditating on the FORMALDEHYDE and the ASBESTOS leaking into my  PERSONAL SPACE!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

There…. that’s done. I’m content with it, if not ecstatic. But, then, if I ever get ecstatic, it probably wouldn’t be as good…. To find excellence, it is often required to assume that good enough isn’t enough….

For now, though, it’s good enough, even if I don’t work for the government anymore. A fact for which I am eternally grateful, if a bit miffed about style…. I know, that’s obscure, but I wouldn’t want to be inconsistent, now, would I? No, of course not…. Well, maybe just a little….  Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..

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