Even tax codes are tasty with hollandaise….

Ffolkes,
“With chattering teeth, wheeling eyes, and muscles tensed, as if in anticipation of a blow, he sits before the object of his reasoned fear, aghast at the level to which feverish apprehension rises uncontrollably. Sheer unbridled terror rules over all courage, bringing the morbid, deathly paralysis that comes to all in such straits. Yet, we see his face harden, and fill with purpose; he reaches up to the table, sets his hands upon the magical keys, and begins, despite, or even because, of his fear…..”

And so begins another day here at ECR, where even the panic inspired by the vision of a blank white screen cannot overcome my unyielding dedication, my purposeful, yet idiotic need to blather out all that is in my head each day. No matter how much sleep it costs me, no matter how little money I make from it, and no matter what anyone says, I will have my way, and will have my say…. If nothing else, it is important, to me, to keep my string unbroken, if a bit frayed. Goodness knows why, but, asking the universe to answer any ‘why’ questions is futile, so we shan’t bother with it…

Not everything in this universe needs an explanation, which I find to be a soothing thought, all in all. It certainly helps me out quite often, as I tend to not worry about the stuff I can’t change, and finding explanations for everything I do gets tiresome very quickly….. It is only other people who wish for us to be up front about motivation, and I’m happy to say, I don’t live by their expectations or desires. That may sound a bit callous, but, in fact, it is not, as I certainly afford them the same courtesy as I demand…. Thus, in my view, and in that respect, the scale is balanced.

I find myself wandering a bit far afield this morning, delving into such a rather abstruse and delicate trend of thought, and I’m wondering if I am quite up to handling it with the required alacrity. My savoir faire, as it were, is not always at its strongest in the mornings, and I’m fairly certain that, if I continue in this vein, I’ll hurt myself…. Since I have no intention of taking any chances of missing my embarkation on Saturday next, (and certainly not because of a failure of savoir faire….), we’ll go on to something a bit less dangerous, from a literary, or even physical, standpoint…. Of course, given the material that usually ends up being presented here, even that may be asking a bit much…..

Oh, well, hell…. Shall we Pearl?…..
_____________________________

“Thoughtcrime was not a thing that could be concealed forever. You might dodge successfully for a while, even for years, but sooner or later they were bound to get you.” — George Orwell, 1984

As the story about E. Snowden, the NSA whistleblower, unfolds in the news, I am struck by how the US government is reacting in such a way as to PROVE the accusations that were made, of not merely spying and illegal mining of data from its own citizenry, but of doing so without any oversight, or any legal recourse for its victims.  Even Saint Barack has shed the hooded mantle of secrecy, and is not only admitting that the spying is going on, but is trying to legitimize it in the eyes of the public. At the same time, the legal arm of the government is preparing to bury this young man with a conscience, for blowing the whistle on how far the powers that be have gone, in their quest for absolute control over society.

In the book from which the above was excerpted, 1984, George Orwell painted a vision for us of how things might be, if ever the general public gave up all power to the government…. At the time of its publication, almost all of the things in the book that showed how that worked were not present in real life, except in secret…. However, if one looks at the book now, just about every technological technique used to monitor the populace of the world, is now in play in our world…. Big Brother is now watching us, and if he doesn’t like what we are doing, well, that’s OUR problem, and they will make sure that we are aware of that….

I really want to rant about this today, but, for some reason, my mind is refusing to cooperate… It might have something to do with the fact that this whole scenario makes me almost incoherent with anger…. Anger directed at the government, and at all the lying politicians, and cowardly judges, and  and all of the other assbites who support them, such as the police, the churches, and, sadly, the ignorant and afraid among the citizenry…. I would like to take them all and just shake some sense into them, but, I happen to know they are immune to such treatment, their minds having been indoctrinated into blind obedience before they reached the age of reason…..

“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

What is most infuriating to me is that the people ALLOW this all to take place…. The politicos put out all their lies and illusions, and the people buy into them, without ever examining any of it for truth, or even relevance…. In the last presidential election, over 48 million people, who otherwise might be considered relatively sane, went out and voted for a man who lied to them consistently for six months.  48 fucking million! That is an incredibly large load of stupid, ffolkes, and makes me afraid all over again….

Fortunately, there were enough other ffolkes who didn’t fall for Mitt the Twitt’s line….  They did, however, fall for the line of a man who is, perhaps, even more dangerous, for he is adept at diverting attention away from what he does in secret, by performing public acts that seem to prove he is aboveboard…. which he is not…. I was, at first, encouraged by the election of a black man as president, hoping it signaled a weather-change in society, but, there doesn’t seem to be much difference, ultimately, in what he has done, as opposed to any other president….

If he was at all different, we would not have had the NDAA signed while the nation’s attention was diverted by a holiday; that happened right after he won the second election in 2012.  If he actually intended to fulfill any of the campaign promises he made, he would have done so by now, but, Guantanamo is still open, people are still being detained and questioned in prison camps overseas, where we cannot observe them, and drones ARE being utilized inside American air space, to spy on our own citizens…. Don’t even bother to try to deny any of that, because the proof is all over the news and the internet…. Moreover, he isn’t denying any of it, as he now knows he cannot be stopped, having fooled everyone into compliance, and secured his position until 2016….

I guess I did end up ranting… anger will do that…. I HATE being lied to, by anyone, but, I hate it the most when I am lied to by elected officials. I don’t know why I hate it so much, except that it has been going on for my entire life, and it is a direct contradiction to the way it is supposed to be. We are, theoretically, supposed to elect the candidates who demonstrate the most honesty and integrity, but, due to the extreme gullibility of the public, we always end up with the candidate who is the most convincing liar, instead…. It drives me crazy, for sure, but, some might say that is a short drive…. I don’t care, I’m too pissed off to worry about it….

“The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning  ourself.” — Friedrich Nietzsche

“I love my country too much to be a nationalist.” — Albert Camus
_____________________________

I’ve left the selection of today’s poem for last, though I found the little excerpt by Cowper earlier, and included it for its relevant beauty…. What I found can only be described as appropriate…. it is strange, disturbing, and esoteric by intent, thus making it the perfect counterpoint to what comprises the rest of today’s effort…. Not that what I’ve created isn’t strange or disturbing; I suppose it is more of a type of trim, than a counterpoint… Whatever it is, I hope you enjoy it, if only for its oddity….

There is a pleasure in poetic pains
Which only poets know.

— William Cowper (1731-1800) — The Task, Book ii, The Timepiece, Line 285

Father Death Blues

Hey Father Death, I’m flying home
Hey poor man, you’re all alone
Hey old daddy, I know where I’m going

Father Death, Don’t cry any more
Mama’s there, underneath the floor
Brother Death, please mind the store

Old Aunty Death Don’t hide your bones
Old Uncle Death I hear your groans
O Sister Death how sweet your moans

O Children Deaths go breathe your breaths
Sobbing breasts’ll ease your Deaths
Pain is gone, tears take the rest

Genius Death your art is done
Lover Death your body’s gone
Father Death I’m coming home

Guru Death your words are true
Teacher Death I do thank you
For inspiring me to sing this Blues

Buddha Death, I wake with you
Dharma Death, your mind is new
Sangha Death, we’ll work it through

Suffering is what was born
Ignorance made me forlorn
Tearful truths I cannot scorn

Father Breath once more farewell
Birth you gave was no thing ill
My heart is still, as time will tell.

~~ Allen Ginsberg ~~

_____________________________

All things considered, it’s been a good morning…. This isn’t to say it hasn’t been without its difficulties, but, I’m trying really hard not to be a whiner, so we’ll pass over all that, and get on with it…. Here is a seven-star pearl for your delectation, lovingly selected over the last hour from Smart Bee, who has been a bit off, but, came through in the end. The point of this pearl is related to the above rant, but, not so’s you could tell at first glance…. Don’t sweat it, it’s all good stuff, even without the point, and who wants a point that’s all belabored, anyway, right?…. So, make sure you have your chopsticks, the protective bib provided for your convenience is in place, and you should be able to get through it without any new laundry bills…..

“You can best serve civilization by being against what usually passes for it.” — Wendell Berry

“All things come round to him who will but wait.” — Henry W. Longfellow (1807-1882) — Tales of a Wayside Inn, The Student’s Tale

“Against those skilled in the attack, the enemy does not know where to defend.  Against the experts in defence, the enemy does not know where to attack.” — Sun Tzu

“What matters today is not the difference between those who believe and those who do not believe, but the difference between those who care and those who don’t.” — Abbe’ Pierre

“If you make people think they’re thinking, they’ll love you; but if you really make them think, they’ll hate you.” — Don Marquis

“I don’t necessarily agree with everything I say.” — Marshall McLuhan

“The universe is full of magical things, patiently waiting for our wits to grow sharper.” — Eden Phillpotts
_____________________________

Having thus sharpened my wits as far as possible on the whetstone of virtual wisdom, and, convinced I can do no more damage, I will take my leave, once I’ve checked this over for typos, etc., a statement of intent which you are, no doubt, grateful to hear….. Okay, well, that took a while, but, we’re all good to go now…. Having once more defeated the forces of Murphy, if only for a time, I bid thee a fond adieu… Oh, yeah, only five days to go, four, if one looks at it right, and y’all won’t have me to kick around any more…. Just kidding…. Nixon pops up at the weirdest times; I just meant we’ll be off to Alaska on Saturday, come Hell or High Water…. Any who….  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

But, the sign says it will sing……

Ffolkes,
It is a commonly held belief that Time is on our side; this, I can assure you, is not true, from at least one standpoint. I can attest from personal experience that Time, as has been previously noted, is a big PITA (Pain In The Ass)….. and I mean that in a bad way…..

Some women I’ve known have been known to call Time the Time Bitch, and watch in the mirror daily, to search for signs of her bitchiness, in the form of crow’s nests of lines around the eyes, and tangles of grey in the hair. We men, not quite as concerned with the outward signs of aging, nonetheless have our own issues with the Time Bozo, with no less degree of hatred involved…..

It’s hard on men in general to get old, especially since, for most of our lives, we are seen as, and view ourselves as, strong, competent, and able to withstand whatever the world throws at us, in order to accomplish our duty. This strength is hard to give up, but, give it up we must, as our muscles grow weaker, and we tire more easily, no matter how much conditioning we try to maintain. Yes, it’s possible to keep the worst effects at bay for a while, with proper exercise and rest, and a good diet, but, eventually, even the most athletic of seniors must put aside the bikes, and the hikes, and trade it in for an occasional waltz with your lover….

In my own case, I am incensed at how my body is losing function, as I’ve always thought of myself as invincible, perhaps even immortal…. Well, guess what? I’m not either of those things, other than in a metaphysical sense (We are immortal, but not in a recognizable fashion from our current viewpoint in Reality…..), and to be honest, I’m beginning to understand a little better exactly why there are so many older folks running around with a piss-poor attitude. After a while of trying to deal with the things that aging brings with it, the frustration builds up, and there is little choice but to find a way to let it out…. It’s just too bad that other people have to be in the way when that happens, but the other side effect of getting older is that we just don’t give a shit about that….

It’s the one thing that saves us oldsters from getting homicidal, actually, this license to grump. And, whether or not you feel that we are licensed to be so, just remember that we don’t give a shit what you think about it, do we?…. Nope, we don’t. So, get used to grumpy old farts like me toddling around, trying to get our shit done, pushing through our hazes of pain and difficult mobility (you try walking around with 50 lbs. of groceries, being pulled in a hand-cart, riding buses, when your hip is screaming with a pain level of about 7 out of 10, and pain and stiffness in the back at about 5 or 6, having to stand and wait, freezing, for buses that never came, for about 90 minutes…..), while we try to live the way we used to do, but much more slowly…..

I hadn’t intended to rant right off the bat this morning, but what I described in the last paragraph took place last evening, and I guess I’m still a bit pissed about it…. I was the victim of a bus system in the throes of destroying itself through budget cuts and piss poor management, and did actually have to stand at a bus stop for over 90 minutes for a bus that never showed up; I ended up calling a cab, and thank goodness I had a cell phone, or I’d have been stuck walking, two miles from home with 50 lbs. of groceries, part of which was thawing during the delay. By the time the cab arrived, I was in tears, and excruciating pain; it took me almost a full minute to be able to sit down in the seat, I was so stiff, cold, and in pain….

Ah well, I suppose I have to get used to that sort of thing, as our society doesn’t place a large emphasis on caring for the aged. Oh, there’s a lot of talk about respecting seniors, and showing them we care, but, I’m afraid I have to tell you, it’s all just smoke and mirrors…. When it comes down to the sticking point, senior programs are among the first to get budget cuts, far ahead of any cuts to the military, or to bailing out the bankers from their latest scheme to rip off the public….. No, I’m not bitter at all, why do you ask?…..

“Alas! it is not till time, with reckless hand, has torn out half the leaves from the Book of Human Life to light the fires of passion with from day to day, that man begins to see that the leaves which remain are few in number.” — Henry W. Longfellow (1807-1882) — Hyperion, Book iv, Chap. viii

Fuck it…. There isn’t anything I can do about it, so I may as well just bury it, down deep where all the other stuff is kept, the stuff I hate, but can’t do anything about…. That’s okay, though…. all that angst, and bitterness, will sit in there with the other stuff, and percolate, much like compost, until it comes bursting out sometime in the future, as a poem, or a steamy, messy, vicious indictment/rant against….. well, somebody…. In the meantime, I guess the only thing to do is go on with today’s dive, and see if it doesn’t calm me down a bit…. Shall we Pearl?…..
__________________________________

“A sense of humor keen enough to show a man his own absurdities will keep him from the commission of all sins, or nearly all, save those that are worth committing.” — Samuel Butler

Smart Bee showed this quote to me this morning first off; I hesitated to use it, though it seems to lend itself to a discussion, and went on. A few moments later, after supplying a few nice pearls for an old-school format, it brought it up again. It usually knows what its doing, so this time I brought it up for treatment here, though still without a clear idea of what to discuss…..

It’s a good thought, and quite accurate in its assumption of human humor as moral mentor. To me, it seems quite obvious…. Then, I realized that, sadly, there is a significant percentage of humanity that possesses NO sense of humor that can be detected. These folks, handicapped as they are by their lack of chillness, often end up in a small category of life tasks, or jobs, as we call them today….

People without any humor tend to flock together in groups; they may not be fully human, but they do need the company of others of their ilk, just like the rest of us. So, they gravitate into professions where their lack of any sense of proportion, or irony, can be an asset rather than a liability, as it tends to be in most of Life’s activities.

Lawyers, accountants, politicians, preachers, all, by virtue of the nature of their work, don’t need a sense of humor; in fact, it slows them down to have one, as they see what they do as important and dignified, no place for levity. They never understand that, by doing so they are acting as the most hilarious of clowns, while being completely oblivious of how ridiculous they appear to the rest of mankind.

A guy calls 911, in breathless panic. When the operator answers, he cries out, “My buddy and I were hunting deer, and he accidentally shot himself! He looks dead! What should I do?” The operator, trained to be calm, says to him, “Okay, first, go make sure that he’s actually dead.” The guy say, “Okay.”, and puts down the phone, The operator hears some footsteps,then, a gunshot. The guy comes back online, and says, “Okay, he’s dead. Now what?”…..

See? That’s funny, right? Since this joke was chosen by a nation-wide search to find out what people thought was the best joke ever, we may assume it is…. Plus, if it isn’t funny to you, then you may want to get examined by a psychiatrist, as you may have lost the sense of humor you once had; quite frankly, it’s bloody hilarious, and quite true to human nature.

That’s all…. I’m going to leave this here, as I can feel my own sense of irony getting heated up, and I’m liable to start spouting off my own funniest stories…. Given my macabre, perilously close to perverted, and often unexplainable sense of humor about almost everything I perceive, especially if it has to do with people and their antics, that could be disastrous…. plus, we’ve got a long way to go yet today. So, I’ll leave this here, and just say this….

We are all Bozos on this Bus, whether we know it or not; it’s not something we have choice in, it is our nature to be clowns. The best, and easiest way to deal with the universe is to accept this, and not try to force Reality into an unnatural shape to suit our own folly, because when people try to do that, they just end up funnier than usual, to the rest of us, as Reality demonstrates its unwillingness to allow any such alteration. As the Firesign Theater said, so many years ago, “If the nose grows, let it show!”….

“Why is the alphabet in that order?  Is it because of that song?” — Steven Wright
__________________________________

After my experience last night with the bus system here, I’m feeling pretty lazy, unwilling to make any effort to get past my recovery stage. I’m also feeling too tired to go searching for a good poem, so I’m going to resort to the ultimate cheat around here, and include here a poem of my own, from a few months ago; October of last year, to be precise….  It seemed appropriate for the occasion….. You may have seen it then, but, whether or not you did so, I hope you enjoy it….

Raging at Aging

As old as you feel, we are told, is old as you are,
custom assures such vision will carry us far.
Reality begs to differ, may it be so bold
it is really quite painful, and very, very cold.

The power and strength felt in our halcyon youth
desert us with age, yet another unwelcome truth.
Irony rules our time here on this bountiful earth
as we reflect the changes over time since our birth.

As physical powers fade from this fragile shell,
we learn our mind can serve us quite as well.
The strength that once filled our bones and hearts
is now applied by our will, to more arcane arts.

Life’s greatest gift is our freedom of choice
no matter how often we forget, we still get a voice.
Energy, or apathy, by our will we may choose,
failing to do so, our only way to lose.

Each of us lives in the grip of time and space,
always seeking our balance, our own chosen place.
One must accept reality, for it is true at the core,
all we can do, is all we can do, and nothing more.

~~ gigoid
__________________________________

Today’s Pearl has apparently been taken over by Smart Bee…. In searching for a final pearl to discuss, it kept giving me a series of related quotes, as if it were trying to tell me which way to go…. Since I’m feeling so lazy today, I have allowed it to pick out a seven star pearl for your reading pleasure, and left it to chance that it will have some sort of relevance to reality….

Of course, each of the following, save the second pearl in line, by Mr. Graham, are worthy of an entire pearl alone…. Even the one by Graham is one I could rant on for a while, and have, in his case, in the past….. But, as I look at them all together, I find them to be not so much a pointed lesson, as a group of lozenges to treat the figurative sort throat that swallowing Reality can produce….. Enjoy!….. They taste almost like cinnamon…

“This universe is a trinity and this is made of name, form, and action. The source of all actions is the body, for it is by the body that all actions are done. The body is behind all actions, even as the Eternal is behind the body. — Upanishads (c. B.C. 800)

“God is more interested in your future and your relationships than you are.” — Billy Graham
(Sorry, couldn’t resist including this, as a contrast to the rational material on either side…. this is so full of shit, it would counteract five pieces of real wisdom…. and any number of pearls….)

“It is even harder for the average ape to believe that he has descended from man.” — H.L. Mencken
(Especially after being exposed to Billy Graham….)

“Say not, when I have leisure I will study; you may not have the leisure.” — The Mishnah

“Having a passionate commitment to social justice does not excuse you from knowing what in the hell you’re talking about.” — Smart Bee

“It is good for a man to eat thistles and to remember that he is an ass.” — E. S. Dallas

“If you keep on doing what you’ve always done, you’ll keep on getting what you’ve always got.” — W.L. Bateman
__________________________________

As I sit here on my sore butt, it occurs to me that I need to get a better chair….. Any who, I’m done for now…. After a short break to clear out the cobwebs, we’ll see how it came out….. Hmm…. well, it will do…. Actually, considering the struggle I’m having today just to keep from screaming at something or somebody, it didn’t come out so badly…. good enough. I won’t tempt fate any further today…..  Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..

 

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

gigoid

dozer3

But, really, the teacher obviously meant to say “provincial”….

Ffolkes,
I’ve managed to make a decision, in spite of the massive cloud of confusion that descends upon me when I try to think about this issue…. I’m going to use the pieces of the Pearl from the 13th, which still refuses to post (another tale….), to fill in other Pearls, until all three sections have been published. Today, I’ll publish the poem, which I think is a good one, and use the rest tomorrow or Tuesday. It all sounds very logical and sensible, so, no doubt, Murphy will have something to say about it beforehand…. I’ll just be on the lookout for that, and hopefully it won’t get any on you…..

Spending more time lamenting my financial state would be both uncomfortable and tactless, as well as just too self-serving; nothing will happen on Sunday anyway. I could try to do laundry, but those pesky finances say not this month. It’s a good thing I have a lot of underwear and socks….. Hmm…. No buses today, either, except for a limited period, limited to two routes. It’s a good thing I checked out a couple of books yesterday when I posted the Pearl, as today is looking like a stay-at-home holiday for us seniors on a budget…..

On days such as today, I always enjoy the process of pearling, because it can take me out of my head, and into the universe, with all its strangeness and beauty. That is, provided Murphy leaves me alone, and Smart Bee doesn’t get smarmy…. either of those events can lead to problematic issues, such as boredom, which I detest and refuse to acknowledge in any form, or worse, angst, which can build up in short order if I get to thinking about stuff like politics, or religion, the beloved ruling class, human nature, or my own personal failures of courage (we’ve all got ’em….). Generally, though, the trips to find pearls are fun, and provide me with countless hours of entertainment (I’m pretty easy to please in that respect, since almost everything is interesting to me…..).

Once again, I’ve also managed to meander through four paragraphs of not very much, to provide a suitable intro…. Of course, given the nature of what I usually produce, I’m not certain at all that the word “suitable” ever applies, so….. Shall we Pearl?…..

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

“Just as treasures are uncovered from the earth, so virtue appears from good deeds, and wisdom appears from a pure and peaceful mind. To walk safely through the maze of human life, one needs the light of wisdom and the guidance of virtue.” — Buddha (B.C. 568-488)

This statement strikes a deep chord within me…. It comes to me upon reflection that there are basically two kinds of people in the world; there are those who will see a statement such as this, read it, think about it, and either accept it, or reject it, though it hardly seems possible to do the latter, given its degree of demonstrable truth.

The other kind of person will start to read this, then give up after a few words, because the words have no meaning for them, beyond the word ‘treasure’. Once these folks discover that the ‘treasure’ isn’t jewels or gold, they stop all thought on the subject, and turn to anything else that will serve their self-interest.

In one sense, this dichotomy of nature is indicative of what is happening in the world at large today. On one hand we observe the people who reject the above statement, and live according to rules that are pathologically oriented to themselves, those who also believe in “do unto others before they can do unto you….”.

Sadly, this group is the same one that the major percentage of elected officials and members of our beloved ruling class come from, along with all of those who spend their lives playing with money, i.e., the bankers. All of these folks refuse to acknowledge the veracity of any of the sentiments expressed by the Buddha above, and in many cases, do so with pride and arrogance…

Another group of folks lend their support to those in power, though they spend a lot of time trying to convince everyone that they are acting out of altruistic motivation rather than monetary. I call these folks preachers, for lack of a better word, and the group, in my mind, includes priests, pastors, vicars, sadhu, imams, Elders, or anyone else who considers themselves a holy man, with the right to interpret the words of gods for the rest of us.

They want us to believe they are acting according to what Buddha has expressed above, but in reality, what they do bears no resemblance at all to virtue. They merely use the words to assume the authority by proxy.  In fact, their very insistence that they are acting in the interests of others, or are at all inspired to virtue, to me, is a foul lie, and worthy of their own judgment…..

I could rant for a long time on this subject, as I regard it as the most critical problem in human nature, the root cause of our current dangerous position as a species threatened with extinction. The callousness and self-aggrandizement that characterizes those among us who wish power over others will, in the long run, kill us all, if we don’t put a stop to it. Unfortunately, that would, and will, require making decisions, and taking actions, that challenge our own virtue, and place us at risk of becoming that which we are trying to destroy…. a conundrum, for certain. Time will give us the answer, and I, for one, fear to hear it…..

“It’s too bad ignorance isn’t painful.” — Smart Bee
__________________________________

Calliope! Muse to all mad poets! This poem is…. it was…. it’s…. well, I don’t know what it is. It’s been percolating a couple of days, and leaked out this morning when I paused over it to gauge its readiness… which means I guess it was ready, even if I wasn’t, completely…. It seems to work, though, so I’ll let y’all figure out if it was worth the effort…. enjoy!

Dreaming of Calliope

La 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 to gain 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

Hmmm….. well, it’s done. I’ll leave any critical analysis to y’all…. I’m too close to it yet….
__________________________________

I had originally intended to write a rant, or at least a discussion of one of the pearls below…. However, the other entries herein kept popping up while I was still composing it in my head, and just seemed to point the way to where I was trying to reach better than what was percolating in my mind…. That happens a lot, since most everything important has already been said at least once…. or so I’ve been told more than once…. Any who, this pearl will lead the Gentle Reader to a very profound concept, IF that reader is sufficiently attentive, and is capable of moderate levels of comprehension and deduction…. and if not, well, they’re all good reading, and one should still walk away with a sense of having gotten SOMETHING from the experience beyond a bit of eyestrain…..

“To be truly conscious of your stupidity is one of the greatest steps you  can make toward wisdom. If you know others, you are learned. If you know  yourself, you are indeed wise. It isn’t the things that you don’t know that  get you into trouble. What gets you into trouble are those things you know  for sure that ain’t so.” — Artemus Ward (1834-1867), aka Charles Farrar Brown

“It is a misconception that spirituality brings everlasting happiness. There is no such thing. Sadness still comes to the wise, but, unlike most people, their clarity of mind allows them to see beyond the temporal emotionalism of the moment. They are farseeing, and so happiness and sorrow become the same to them.” — Deng Ming-Dao

“Why, when no honest man will deny in private that every ultimate problem is wrapped in the profoundest mystery, do honest men proclaim in pulpits that unhesitating certainty is the duty of the most foolish and ignorant?  Is it not a spectacle to make the angels laugh?We are a company of ignorant beings, feeling our way through mists and darkness, learning only be incessantly repeated blunders, obtaining a glimmering of truth by falling into every conceivable error, dimly discerning light enough for our daily needs, but hopelessly differing whenever we attempt to describe the ultimate origin or end of our paths; and yet, when one of us ventures to declare that we don’t know the map of the universe as well as the map of our infinitesimal parish, he is hooted, reviled, and perhaps told that he will be damned to all eternity for his faithlessness…” — Leslie Stephen (1832-1904), “An agnostic’s Apology”, — Fortnightly Review, 1876

THEOSOPHY, n.  An ancient faith having all the certitude of religion and all the mystery of science.  The modern Theosophist holds, with the Buddhists, that we live an incalculable number of times on this earth, in as many several bodies, because one life is not long enough for our complete spiritual development; that is, a single lifetime does not suffice for us to become as wise and good as we choose to wish to become.  To be absolutely wise and good — that is perfection; and the Theosophist is so keen-sighted as to have observed that everything desirous of improvement eventually attains perfection. Less competent observers are disposed to except cats, which seem neither wiser nor better than they were last year.  The greatest and fattest of recent Theosophists was the late Madame Blavatsky, who had no cat. — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

“A person is not given integrity. It results from the relentless pursuit of honesty at all times.” — Smart Bee

“All things come round to him who will but wait.” — Henry W. Longfellow (1807-1882) — Tales of a Wayside Inn, The Student’s Tale

Even the end of a pearl….. This one is an easy one, and I could keep adding evidence to the pile for the rest of the day, if I wished. But, the following note from Jubal Harshaw (the name of the character who said it…) gives me ample reason to stop here, at a point where the entire thing can still be saved from complete chaos, and certain oblivion….

“Read it?  Good God, no!  It’s bad enough to write such a thing.” — Stranger in a Strange Land, Robert A. Heinlein
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“The moving finger, having writ, moves on….”  And aren’t you all thankful for that? Another day’s effort come to fruition, or an approximation thereof, with style and, well, I won’t claim elegance, but, a bit of charm wouldn’t be so far off the mark….

For the record, the poem, should today’s post get online without any glitches, is the one I intended to put up the other day, when WordPress refused to accept my input…. (which it still won’t, for some reason… I attempted, yesterday, to edit the material into the page, but that one date’s page WILL NOT accept the material, but will only post the title. Ah well, software is, after all, written by humans…. I’m off to the Big Blue Room to try to get this posted….  Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


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

gigoid

Kowabunga!

Fussing as an Olympic event….

Ffolkes,
It’s always amazing how the WP community rallies around other members with a problem. Since describing my troubles with accessing WP sites yesterday, a lot of ffolkes have commented, giving suggestions for fixes, or just to commiserate. This is truly a gathering of special people, who understand how to have friends, as in “if you want to have friends, you have to be a friend.” Thanks to everyone!…..

The issue was once again with my ISP (internet service provider). They use a function called Turbo to help their users get more speed out of the network. Unfortunately, this function messes with the WordPress code; it’s not compatible somehow. The fix is simple; I just disable the Turbo function. What I found yesterday when speaking with tech support at the ISP is that their system will disable the Turbo, but will automatically turn it back on after a period of time. So, I have to go back and toggle it off whenever I start having problems signing in. A big PITA, but at least now I know what to do when it occurs again…..

It’s a big relief, let me tell you, and it was nice to be able to go catch up on at least a few sites I’ve been missing out on. In the next few days I will try to get to everybody I follow at least once, so I’ll be busy. That’s a good thing, as retirement gets a bit slow when one is handicapped financially. I’m really looking forward to it….

And now that my ‘owee’ is all better, has been kissed and had a bandaid applied, I can concentrate on the Pearls. Shall we dive on in? Yes…..

“Here, pigs will fly, lightning will strike twice, hell will freeze over, and eventually, things will get really interesting…” — Smart Bee, regarding this blog….
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Congresswoman:  “Well, Mr. Dallas… we’ve heard your smut masquerading as songs… and we’ve heard how teen prostitution pregnancy, drug use, cults, runaways, suicide and poor hygiene are sweeping this nation.  We thought you might like to share with the committee any particular causes you might see for those latter problems…”

Steve Dallas:  “I dunno.  Maybe the proliferation of narrow, suffocating zealotry masquerading as parenting in this country.” — Bloom County

When I first saw this in the paper, several years ago when it was first published, I literally almost fell out of my chair, laughing. It is just such a perfect description of how those Congressional hearings go, I couldn’t help it. This is a very accurate portrayal of how our society is in the habit of placing blame for problems, rather than finding solutions. At the same time, it delivers a strong punch to the gut of America, by placing the blame squarely on the shoulders of those who deserve it, to wit: ourselves.

“Narrow, suffocating zealotry”. What a wonderful use of adjectives and logic! It perfectly describes almost all of the people who complain about such things; they would rather cry, and moan, and cast about for a scapegoat, when the solution to their issue resides in their own hands. They are constitutionally unable to accept responsibility for how their own actions are creating the very issues they complain of, and generally will spend a lot of time trying to find someone, anyone, else to blame. It’s rather pathetic, when one stops to consider it….

Other than the environmental cataclysm that is imminent on our planet, I can’t think of any solutions to this problem. The difficulty in fixing it lies in human nature, and the changes that our species needs to make in that arena. Yes, having the environment crash around our ears, putting us on the brink of extinction will solve the issue. But, will it wait to happen until we can make the needed changes, or will it catch us with our pants down? I have a feeling the latter is more likely than the former, and I’m formulating my plans with that in mind…. Not that I think I can get out of it, but, hey, it’s worth a shot….

During the time when Congress was holding those hearings on the effects of music on teen issues, Frank Zappa was asked almost the same question. His reply was to the effect that, he had written and performed a number of songs that praised tooth brushing. He asked the committee if they had noted any significant numbers of teens had improved their dental hygiene…. which I thought was very relevant. The committee, however, was not amused…..

At the end of the movie “The American President”, Michael Douglas, as the President, makes a speech to the press corps wherein he states “We’ve got serious problems, and we need serious people to solve them. And I promise you, Dick Rumsen (the fictional candidate; in real life we have Mitt the Twitt in that role) has no interest in solving those problems. He’s interested in two things, and two things  only: making you afraid of it, and telling you who’s to blame for it. That is how you win elections….”  It’s a perfect example of Art imitating Life…. and that is exactly what we have going on today…..

We have a bunch of narrow-minded zealots trying to force the public into believing that the current administration hasn’t done anything. Of course, they don’t mention how hard they have worked to throw up obstacles to getting anything done. The House of Representatives has already voted to repeal the health care reform bill that was just upheld by the Supreme Court; it now must go to the Senate. They (the Republicans) don’t care that millions of Americans have already been helped by the bill’s provisions. They don’t care that it was originally THEIR idea. It was passed by the opposition, and that is all they care about, so they will fight it, no matter how many of their constituents don’t want them to do so…..

“It is terrible to contemplate how few politicians are hanged.” — G. K. Chesterton, The Cleveland Press, 3/1/21

This is the state of American politics today, and it SUCKS big time. Unfortunately, if I don’t vote, then I’m giving in to their pressure, and handing them carte blanche to screw with me. So, I’ll go vote for the lesser of two evils (yes, two…. this President has done the best he could do, and has been pretty good about transparency. But, he IS a politician, and we don’t know ALL of what he has done, or hasn’t done. ), and hope that we don’t end up with someone in office that will cause me to consider taking a more active part in providing a solution…. I’ve got better things to do than having to impeach a sitting President, or even to take other, more drastic measures…. Let us hope it doesn’t come to that…..

“It’s OBVIOUS..  The FURS never reached ISTANBUL..  You were  an EXTRA in the REMAKE of “TOPKAPI”..  Go home to your  WIFE. She’s making FRENCH TOAST!” — Zippy the Pinhead

(Well, it makes as much sense as anything Mitt has said lately…. and is just as pertinent as his remarks…..)
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We’re taking a comedy break….

ACHTUNG!!!

Das machine is nicht fur gefingerpoken und mittengrabben.  Ist easy schnappen der springenwerk, blowenfusen und corkenpoppen mit
spitzensparken.  Ist nicht fur gewerken by das dummkopfen.  Das rubbernecken sightseeren keepen hands in das pockets.  Relaxen und
vatch das blinkenlights!!! — Smart Bee, pidgin Germanic version
—–

Balance the budget.  Declare politicians a game species! — Smart Bee
———-

Weather

Once I dipt into the future far as human eye could see,
And I saw the Chief Forecaster, dead as any one can be–
Dead and damned and shut in Hades as a liar from his birth,
With a record of unreason seldom paralleled on earth.
While I looked he reared him solemnly, that incandescent youth,
From the coals that he’d preferred to the advantages of truth.
He cast his eyes about him and above him; then he wrote
On a slab of thin asbestos what I venture here to quote–
For I read it in the rose-light of the everlasting glow:
‘Cloudy; variable winds, with local showers; cooler; snow.’

Ambrose Bierce
——

“A little nonsense now and then, is cherished by the wisest men.” — Willie Wonka

Okay, all done….. back to our regularly scheduled program….
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“Boys become men by watching men, by standing close to men. Manhood is a ritual passed from generation to generation with precious few spoken instructions. Passing the torch of manhood is a fragile, tedious task. If the rite of passage is successfully completed, the boy- become-man is like an oak of hardwood character. His shade and influence will bless all those who are fortunate enough to lean on him and rest under his canopy.” — Preston Gilham

This is a wonderful piece of insightful observation. In many ways, the problems our society faces today can be traced back to this process being degraded. No matter what kind of nuclear family one is speaking of, this process of teaching boys to become men has been almost completely eliminated from our family process. There are a lot of reasons for this; social interaction is a very complex matter. But, the fact of its demise is not as complex, and is plain to anyone with any sort of discriminating intelligence. There are far too few men today who are following this example, and our society is suffering for that lack.

Again, I don’t know the answer. Or rather, I know the answer, for it is the same as I mentioned above; human nature must change. The policies and structures our society has adopted over time have become unsuitable, and counter-productive to our survival. The question is, how do we change human nature? I can only wish I knew….

Our future, as a species, and as a culture, is in serious jeopardy, and time is not slowing down to allow us to figure out how to deal with it. It is a frightening but unavoidable fact of life, at this point, with very little to be done. One can only hope that enough people wake up in time to at least make an effort…. but my hope of that is growing smaller every day…. I hate being a doom-Sayer, but the problem isn’t going to go away just because we ignore it…. so pay attention, please, and pass the humility…..

And as she looked around, she saw how Death the consoler,
Laying his hand upon many a heart, had healed it forever.
— Henry W. Longfellow (1807-1882) — Evangeline, Part ii
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As we all know, time goes by quickly when we are having fun, and this just zipped on by…. It’s long, it’s wordy, it’s relevant, and it’s done…. 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!

Layered in pugnacious pyjamas….

Ffolkes,
I’m beginning to think that my habit of writing an average of 1500 words every morning is depleting my store of inspiration; if not, it is at least getting weary, and hiding from me more often. I can’t really blame it, as I’ve asked it to perform miracles almost every day, turning pearls, and what is in my head, into something worth putting down on paper (note: that phrase is rapidly losing all meaning, as computers become more ubiquitous….). That’s a lot of miracles in just about 300 days.

“This writing business. Pencils and whatnot. Overrated, if you ask me.” — Winnie the Pooh

But, having set myself the goal of posting a Pearl every day (set long ago, and too late now to worry about changing…), I feel duty-bound to make the best effort I can to meet that goal. So, I carry on, in spite of the increasing difficulty. I suppose it has to do with how writing is not for the weak-minded, or for those with no staying power to their will. Since I’m now not a chef, or a psych tech, or an executive assistant, writing is what I do, so I’ve left myself with very little choice but to keep on keepin’ on, as Jerry and the boys would have said….

I see my life go drifting like a river
From change to change; I have been many things –
A green drop in the surge, a gleam of light
Upon a sword, a fir tree on a hill,
An old slave grinding at a heavy quern,
A king sitting upon a chair of gold –
And all these things were wonderful and great;
But now I have grown nothing, knowing all.
Ah! Druid, Druid, how great webs of sorrow
Lay hidden in that small slate-coloured thing!
— William Butler Yeats, “Fergus and the Druid”

What does that mean for this process? Well, nothing really…. but it got me two more paragraphs of semi-literate, if relatively meaningless discussion of a personal problem, and a great pearl from Yeats, and that ain’t nothing…. so, we’ll just use that as a very, very loose segue into today’s dive for pearls…. shall we Pearl, then?…..
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“I’m just sitting here watching the wheels go round and round.” — John Lennon

Men are afraid of women… hence all the jokes about them taking over, over slyly ruling us without us knowing it. Men’s fears of just that thing are what cause him to hate women, because they do not understand them, and fear arises out of lack of understanding. Here are a few examples of such lies, the lies that perpetuate the war between the sexes…..

“My notion of a wife at 40 is that a man should be able to change her, like a bank note, for two twenties.” — Warren Beatty

A lady is one who only shows her underwear intentionally. — Smart Bee

— Yo momma……so fat she has to buy two airline tickets. — Smart Bee

“A beautiful woman is paradise for the eyes, hell for the soul, and purgatory for the purse.” — Smart Bee

“Passionate kiss like spider web, lead to undoing of fly.” — Confucius say (No, he didn’t, but liars don’t care….)

Really, really sexist, misogynistic, and paranoid, yes? Yes….

The mere existence of these jokes, and others like them, indicates clearly what men are afraid of in women, and that is their sexuality. We… well, men, not necessarily we men, because not all of us hate them… No I don’t understand them, but that doesn’t make them any less fascinating or wonderfully different. I am aware of my own self, and my own powers, and they have naught to do with what women can do; I feel no need to compare the two, or to assume one is stronger or better. They are just different, and what is different about women is not to be feared, even if not understood. It is just to be learned, and appreciated, that’s all….and the learning is a totally awesome trip, I assure you….

But, back to the sexuality that men fear. Their fear exists because these men have never learned to understand themselves, or their place in the scheme of things; that makes them unable to understand women, and turns their ignorance to fear, and from thence to hatred and abuse against them.

Men cannot stand the thought that a woman might be more important than him, and that is a certain sign of lack of confidence, and of ignorance.  Men who know their place in life, and who are confident of their own ability to cope with that place and its demands, have no need or desire to be more important than anyone; they are complete within themselves….

Too many men in this world don’t come anywhere close to this kind of self-knowledge; most go through life without exercising more than two neurons at once, and those tend to lose function whenever the blood goes elsewhere than the brain (such as during an erection). Most men are so afraid of women that they spend half their life telling jokes like the above, and spreading the nonsensical lies that perpetuate this atrocity.

Yes, atrocity, because it is this fear and loathing, of both themselves and women, that leads to issues such as domestic abuse, sex trafficking, prostitution, and abuse of children. The only women who are actively engaged in these activities are those who have been brainwashed to believe the crap they’ve heard all their lives, and who have given up their own humanity; they are very few in number. Otherwise, it is men who perpetrate these vile actions on women…. all because of their own fear and ignorance…. I say, shame on them, for they are not men, in my world…. They are vicious, irredeemable beasts, and should be put down like the dangerous creatures they are…..

“In the dark colony of night, when I consider man’s magnificent capacity for malice, madness, folly, envy, rage, and destructiveness, and I wonder whether we shall not end up as breakfast for newts and polyps, I seem to hear the muffled cries of all the words in all the books with covers closed.” — Leo Rosten
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“The power of a bold idea uttered publicly in defiance of dominant opinion cannot be easily measured. Those people who speak out in such a way as to shake up not only the self-assurance of their enemies, but the complacency of their friends, are precious catalysts for change.” — Howard Zinn

I would like to take a moment here to acknowledge a very honorable, and brave, act by the President of this country, Barack Obama. Yesterday, in a press conference, the President put the power of his office behind the defense of human rights, by stating that his administration was fully convinced that legislation that denied marriage to gay couples, or to anyone else, was directly in opposition to the Constitution by which we live. He made this a national announcement, and set the stage for what is sure to be a fire-storm of protest from the political and religious factions that have made this issue their rallying cry.

The idea that marriage between people who are not male and female is acceptable is one whose time has obviously arrived. Current polls nationwide have borne out the fact that a large majority of the population agrees with that assessment. But it doesn’t detract from the bravery required to mount that horse at this time, for it had to be known that it would be a decision that would create a lot of noise from those who feel differently.

So, I am, for once, proud of what a President has done; it is something I cannot recall ever happening in the past, at all. Most of the time I am forced to shake my head and hide my face in shame, agreeing fully with the Dixie Chicks when they apologized for Bush to the rest of the world.

Let us all take this time to appreciate how this President has taken the reins of leadership firmly in hand, to direct our country toward a future where human rights are more important than living in fear and ignorance…. Yay, Barry!…. Good Job!

“A commitment to diversity is not a commitment to blacks or gays or any other group. A commitment to diversity is a commitment to respect and value each individual employee (person) for who they are, a commitment to help them become the best they can be by honoring their nature.” — Callan Williams
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OPERA
For centuries now, Opera has been the foremost method of humiliation available to the security forces. It began in the late 1600s, when peasant rebels were made to dress up as ridiculously fat people and get up on wooden planks in front of hundreds of their peers and shout the same things over and over and over, to a musical accompaniment. By the time the French Revolution came rolling along, it was the aristocrats who were forced to the stage to sing, gesticulate wildly and loudly perform plays devised to spread Revolutionary propaganda.  Nowadays, Opera has been driven underground, but is still carried out by the perverse, the deviant, and those with very big tits (both men and women), their audiences made up almost exclusively of establishment figures. — Daniel Bowen’s TOXIC CUSTARPEDIA

That’s what I’m talking about! Opera, to me, seems like a perfect example of how a lot of folks get all worked up over something that everyone else says is cool, but really has nothing to justify that opinion. Sure, there is some good music that came out of opera, and a few cool songs (far fewer than any opera buff would have us believe…), but for the most part it is just a bunch of hype that normally smart folks seem to fall for on a regular basis, just because a consensus says they should. It seems to me that anything that anyone does because they ‘should’ gets exactly what they deserve, i.e., twaddle… and a good portion of it.

So, don’t fall for this nonsense folks. Remember, friends don’t let friends go to an opera… unless they’re mad at them….
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Underneath this sable hearse
Lies the subject of all verse,–
Sidney’s sister, Pembroke’s mother.
Death, ere thou hast slain another,
Learn’d and fair and good as she,
Time shall throw a dart at thee.
— Ben Jonson (1573-1637) — Epitaph on the Countess of Pembroke

And as she looked around, she saw how Death the consoler,
Laying his hand upon many a heart, had healed it forever.
— Henry W. Longfellow (1807-1882) — Evangeline, Part ii

“For good men but see death, the wicked taste it.” — Johnson

“Be happy while you’re living, for you’re a long time dead.” — Scottish Proverb

Mankind has always had a fascination with Death, which, I suppose, is natural, considering it is one of the few things in this universe that all of us will experience at the same time in our lives. It is the Great Equalizer, in its finest sense; no one escapes. There are probably more books and treatises on Death, or involving some manifestation of Death, than of any other subject, save perhaps Love, another subject that deeply affects us all.

My writing about it probably enters the realm of superfluousness, but I found these great pearls, so I couldn’t resist…. Besides which, as I move ever closer to my own time to have a face to face with the Reaper, I find myself turning my thoughts to the subject, somewhat morbidly I’m sure….

How each of us faces that particular moment is about as personal as things can be, for we are all ourselves, little as we may understand that phrase, and the things we have learned in our lives are what will determine whether we are able to greet Death with dignity, or pitch a fit of major proportions….

I’m not going to go any further into this at this time, as I’m not so close to my time as all that. But, I will say that I hope that I can approach my own demise with some aplomb; I really hate to make a scene. It’s so embarrassing to wash one’s dirty linen in public, and I hope I have more panache than that…. I guess we’ll see, won’t we…. like we had a choice in the matter….  🙂
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“Most people want security in this world, not liberty.” — H.L. Mencken

Mr. Mencken has put his finger firmly on what I see as wrong in our culture today, to wit: the average person in this country has assumed the “slave” mentality, and has adopted security as their preferred state over that of being free. Far too many of my countrymen, and women, have given up the right to think for themselves, opting instead to let the beloved ruling class decide for them what they may think, and what they may do.

They have given up this right for the illusion of security; I say illusion for the word ‘security’ has no meaning in Reality. One can never be completely secure; it just isn’t possible in a world where there are so many people devoted to taking advantage of one another.

Most folks who allow this degradation of their own liberty don’t realize that they have chosen an illusion. They believe that the people who have promised them security can not only give it to them, but are doing so because they care about what happens to their constituents. This, of course, couldn’t be further from the truth, for not only are they NOT doing it for their constituents, they are deliberately lying to them to get them to believe it.

The actual danger of being taken advantage of does not come from outside our country, but from those very folks who tell us we need to be secure, rather than free.  The very people who they think are helping them are the ones who are ripping them off with both hands….

“Any body of men who believe in hell will persecute whenever they have the power.” — Joseph M. McCabe (1867-1957)

It’s enough to make a man want to drink… a lot…. At least when I’m stone cold drunk I don’t feel so bad about it. Of course, in that state I don’t feel bad about anything, so it’s obviously not a solution, but it does offer some temporary relief from having to watch it happen. Ah well, so much for the American Dream, eh?…..
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Well, I must say, this has been one of the most interesting, and chaotic Pearls that I’ve ever composed. It seemed to go all over the map as I was writing, taking me from subject to subject willy-nilly, and having a grand time about it. On looking back over it all, it seems to have held together fairly well, so I’m going to go with it once again without trying to make any sense out of why…. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you….

 


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

Kowabunga!

Wing nuts fried in color-fast bleach…

Ffolkes,
I surrender….. My email wins, or rather the WP email ‘bots win. I got busy yesterday running errands for real life, and couldn’t get to all the email that came in. So, I figured I’d get up early and knock it down this morning, from the 150 that I left in there last night when I crashed. This morning there are 268 in my Inbox….. and by the time I finish this Pearl, that will no doubt grow to an even 300…..

I can’t keep up. There are at least two bloggers that are publishing about 30 times a day each, one with pictures I have no interest in seeing (in addition, he will often post the same article or pictures four or five times in a row, within minutes of each other), and one with re-blogs of just about every blog they visit. Then at least one a day from the over 140 blogs I follow….. I’m dead…. I’ll never get caught up, unless I get ruthless and just delete all the ones I have now, without reading any, to get caught up.

SIGH…. a dilemma, and the only other way to cut back the emails is to Unfollow a bunch of folks. I don’t want to have to do that, for several reasons, one of which is that I’m a softy, and don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings if I can help it…..

I’m sure others have this problem, too; how do you deal with it? Is there a way to turn off the email notifications without unfollowing a blog? I’d ask WP but it seems to take forever to get a response, if they answer at all, so I’m asking y’all first; if you have any suggestions, please feel free to leave them in the comments, and thanks in advance for anything you can tell me….

Housekeeping out of the way, we can now get down to the whole point of this getting up early….. a Pearl….. shall we, then, go Pearling? Let’s do…..
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And the night shall be filled with music,
And the cares that infest the day
Shall fold their tents like the Arabs,
And as silently steal away.
— Henry W. Longfellow (1807-1882) — The Day is done

Apparently, what has stolen away is my Muse…. pearls seem to be hiding from me, inspiration is AWOL, and she’s nowhere to be found. I am almost tempted to fall back into the Assassin’s story from yesterday, just to get things moving. I hate to set a precedent like that, though, they can become habits too quickly. Now if only Longfellow’s poem would come true, and my cares were all to fade away, maybe they would find the Muse and send her home…. it may be the only hope I have….

“You know that feeling when you’re leaning back on a stool and it starts to tip over? Well, that’s how I feel all the time.” — Steven Wright

Well, maybe not all the time, but right now for sure…. the search for a suitable pearl goes on…..

Baby! Baby! oo-ah oo-ah! Baby! Baby! oo-ah oo-ah! — Not Smart Bee, I hope….

Okay, that’s it… all this time and effort, and THIS is what I can find…. more than just pathetic, it is beginning to look like conspiracy….. and the only thing to do in that case is to go back to bed…. I’ll see you in a while….. Sometimes, one has to retreat in order to have any chance to win….. Patience, I’ll be back (Ouch, sorry…. didn’t mean to inflict any Arnie on y’all….)   Hang in there…..
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I met a traveler from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert.  Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read.
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed;
And on the pedestal these words appear:
“My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!”
Nothing beside remains.    Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
The lone and level sands stretch far away.
— Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792-1822), “Ozymandias” (1819)

Apparently, going back to bed for a couple of hours helped…. can’t yet say if my Muse has shown up, but within moments of resuming my search, the above showed up. Even without the lesson this poem teaches (of humility before the sands of Time) its sheer beauty is enough to have it grace this page. I am encouraged, and we shall now resume the search for more pearls with a lighter heart…..
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“Say what you will about the sweet miracle of unquestioning faith, I consider a capacity for it terrifying and absolutely vile!” — Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.

Here is a subject upon which I’ll bet I can rant without any warm-up, mostly because I happen to agree with the sentiment completely. I find this quality in a human being to be incomprehensible, as well as scary, and often wonder how such folks live to the age they have achieved, considering their lack of survival skills. Mother Nature is usually not kind to those who would ignore her rules and regulations, (and she doesn’t care why….) choosing instead to live with their heads cocooned in cotton; for most of history such folks as can do this were summarily executed by the Universe at large, a sentence generally carried out in short order when proof of their stupidity arose. “Oh, look! It’s one of those pretty sabertooth kittens…. how cute! Here, kitty, kitty…..”  Or some similar event; you get the picture, I’m sure….

“What a fool cannot learn he laughs at, thinking that by his laughter he shows superiority instead of latent idiocy.” — M. Corelli

However, as civilization has progressed, the penalties for such actions have been downgraded, due to the advances in medicine, and cultural mores that dictate how the weaker and more vulnerable in society are helped to survive (more of that faith-based denial of natural law….). Now, instead of being summarily removed from the gene pool, these walking statues, with heads of marble, are not only kept alive, they are kept alive long enough to breed, thus increasing their numbers, and providing more candidates for the churches and institutions that rely on their numbers for new recruits, recruits who will never question what they are told…..

It is a vicious, self-sustaining cycle, which will last right up to the point of species extinction that we are rapidly approaching….. It won’t bother them much when the world ends because they will deny it right to the end, but it is going to be a scary ride for those of us who have their eyes wide open…. for sure……

“Der christliche Entschluss, die Welt h\”asslich und schlecht zu finden, hat die Walt h\”asslich und schlecht gemacht.”
(The Christian determination to find the word hideous and bad, has made the world hideous and bad.)
— Friedrich Nietzsche
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“Well, here I am in AMERICA..  I LIKE it.  I HATE it. I LIKE it.  I HATE it.  I LIKE it.  I HATE it.  I LIKE it. I HATE it.  I LIKE..  EMOTIONS are SWEEPING over me!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

I’m very close to pulling out what little hair is left on my head…. This is the best I’ve found in the last 30 minutes, and to say the least, I’m very disappointed. Though it is strange enough to tickle my whimsy, it isn’t strong enough to carry me into either a rant or a subtle discussion of hidden meaning; there isn’t any!  I’m going to have to resort to drastic measures, I guess…. I’ve never encountered such a dearth of material. Every oyster I see is pearl-free and now it looks as if the beds themselves are shifting and moving, trying to hide from me. Well, one more try…..
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The mossy marbles rest
On the lips that he has prest
In their bloom;
And the names he loved to hear
Have been carved for many a year
On the tomb.
— Oliver Wendell Holmes (1809-1894) — The Last Leaf

One may always trust poetry to save the day. Or, if not save it, at least support it long enough to get done with the day’s work. These two short tastes of beauty and grace will serve to end this fiasco for today, and carry it into tomorrow, when I trust I shall find reality to have resumed a more amenable shape, bursting with pearls, and more grist for my mill…. I only hope these do not serve as an elegy…..

So perish all, whose breast ne’er learn’d to glow
For others’ good, or melt at others’ woe.
— Alexander Pope (1688-1744) — To the Memory of an Unfortunate Lady, Line 45
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I believe today’s offering has reached a new pinnacle of weird…. I felt the whole time as if I were swimming through cotton candy or spider webs, pulling at me, sticking to my legs and arms, and keeping me from getting anywhere. I will need to think about this today, it has been a severe struggle; I’m already exhausted, it isn’t 9 AM yet, and I have a lot more to do today. (Without even thinking about the 300 emails awaiting my reluctant attention…..

Well, so be it…. pissing and moaning about it isn’t going to get anything done, so I’ll leave it at that…… Here is hoping that your day goes better than mine has begun. I plan to go hence and try to persuade things to move along more in my chosen direction, so, we’ll see…. As long as I can avoid any further attention from Murphy, I should be okay…… Y’all take care out there….. and May the Metaphorse be with you….


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

gigoid

Kowabunga!