Smells like a burnt lemon….

Ffolkes,

“And the trouble is, if you don’t risk anything, you risk even more.”

~~ Erica Jong ~~

cali wine

Winter vines, Sonoma Valley, California

Hajime…. As the old man sat, pondering how to begin, his resident familiar appeared, claiming his lap for a hammock. After ten minutes of mutually satisfying contentment, complete with purrs & hedonistic delight, she jumped down with a chirp of thanks, to nom some food. Deciding to forgo the planned fictional opening, the words of opening began to flow….

Truly, a fictional beginning might have been more attractive, in at least an artistic sense; thank goodness our purposes here have little or nothing in common with attractiveness. Otherwise, we might have spent the past few moments trying to find our way out of one my particularly obscure fantasies, with no clear reason why we were there in the first place. Fortunately for us all, I managed to avoid any such entrapment, by the simple expedient of heading off into edited reality. I suppose it isn’t the most efficacious literary outcome we might hope to experience this time of day, but, it is two paragraphs of fairly coherent conversation, for all that is worth….

Yes, I’m stuck again. Half way through an introductory section, with, still, no clear idea of how we got to where we are, nor any better idea of how to get out of it. In the interests of fair play, as well as common sense, I’ll just use one of our unexpectedly effective techniques to close it off, & not worry overmuch about how it looks, or pretends to look. Instead, we’ll just do this….

Shall we Pearl?

“Smooth seas do not make skillful sailors.”

~~ African Proverb ~~

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jimmy_buffett

I feel like some feel-good music, on a beach, so, here is an artist who does those two things, very, very well…. Have a good time, ffolkes; it’s easy to do with this one….

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Jimmy Buffett
Live in Anguilla

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Comedy_Tragedy

Is It Alive?

Fighting into the light, words push hard to exist
each step closer to real brings another unique twist.
Shedding meaning for meaning, until bright, alone, and right
sculpting useless shapes, yet undefined, in pale morning’s light.

Never knowing the face is part of the lasting charm
bringing elegant focus, before sounding the alarm.
Advantageous time sends out messages, fears finding voice,
mulling options for flexibility, virtually without choice.

Fortunate man, who embraces the power of change;
’tis magical knowledge, bonding common to strange.
Weaving words of wonder, made strong by love and duty,
into a tapestry of life, and everlasting beauty.

~~ gigoid ~~

1/10/2013

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pearls_3

Naked Pearls

More notes on Life at Large…

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“Every man is a divinity in disguise, a god playing the fool.”

~~ Ralph Waldo Emerson ~~

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“One of the greatest joys known to man
is to take a flight into ignorance
in search of knowledge.”

~~ Robert Lynd ~~

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“Delight in the simple joy of a long walk.”

~~ Things We Can Learn From Dogs ~~

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“The greatest gift is a portion of thyself.”

~~ Ralph Waldo Emerson ~~

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“You cannot learn to fly by flying.
First you must learn to walk, to run, to climb, to dance.”

~~ Friedrich Nietzsche ~~

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“It is in the shelter of each other that people live.”

~~ Irish proverb ~~

*******

“And in the end
the love you take
is equal to the love you make.”

~~ The Beatles, The last lyric of their last song ~~

*******

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Somehow, we’re late; I guess the hammock time added up faster than realized. But, we did make it to the end, so, let’s not look too long into the mouth of this horse, & just get it done. In fact, let’s do that now, for I am, without doubt, done for today. I will, however, be back soon to try again…. Maybe, one of these days, I’ll get it right…. 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.

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

dozer3

À bientôt, mon cherí….


			

Folly defines itself, it seems….

Ffolkes,

“Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.”

~~ Albert Einstein ~~

shadow

Shadow of an old, crooked man….


Hajime…. I’m here, typing, but, let’s not make too much of that, since it’s the same thing I’ve done almost daily for five years now. The only difference we find from day to day is how much I’ve been able to sleep the night before, which is somewhat of an unpredictable facet of my life. Today, I happen to have had, oh, maybe three solid hours, found at the hind end of the night, as usual. Such is becoming rather more consistent a happening than I’d prefer, but, what the hell, I’ve got nothing better to do at the moment, so, I may as well get this done.

In the spirit of being efficient, as well as catering to my fatigue, we will set out immediately to the oyster beds, so we can say we wasted no time. Not that anyone is monitoring, (aside from the NSA, of course, but, they only check it later, I’m sure, so, no worries…. besides, they already know I despise them and their false sense of paranoid entitlement, so, I try to say howdy at least once in a while… Howdy, assholes!…. stolen any cool data lately?), but, we know, don’t we? We do. Since that is so, why don’t we just do it like this….

Shall we Pearl?….

“The authority of those who teach is often an obstacle to those who want to learn.”

~~ Cicero ~~


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jimmy_buffett

The Original Parrothead


I know I’ve used this concert in the past, and, I won’t usually repeat most music. But, I’m in the mood for a good time, without any worries to get in the way, and, nobody throws a better party than Jimmy. I know, I’ve been to more than a dozen of them since first hearing his music in 1975, first hearing the album, Livin’ & Dyin’ in Three-Quarter Time…. Enjoy, ffolkes…. Unless you’re lacking a party gene, you’ll like this one….

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Jimmy Buffett
Live in Anguilla

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Dont keep calm

“Science is the whore of industry and the handmaiden of war.”

~~ Edward Abbey ~~


I don’t know about all of y’all, but, in my mind, the quote above from our old friend Ed is a perfect start to a good, strong indictment of both the Beloved Ruling Class, and the unwashed masses who allow themselves to be enslaved by their own nature. It speaks quite plainly, in a short, pithy statement, how even the most intelligent folks can be manipulated by their own lack of self knowledge, bringing us to the unstable society, and uncertain future, in which we now exist. It’s a perfect lead in for an exploration of our own failures of spirit, and how they will affect us all.

But, I’m fucking tired, and can tell that any ranting I do today would go completely over the line into pure rage, so, rather than subject any of us to such a display of emotion, which would indicate a lack of personal control and knowledge which I refuse to countenance any more. So, instead, we have for y’all a nice little seven-star, old-school pearl to explore those same spiritual difficulties, in a roundabout way. The last one, of course, tells us the truth about what matters the most, for all of us…. Enjoy!….

“All politics is based on the indifference of the majority.” — James Reston

“It is fear that first brought gods into the world.” — Sagacious Bee

“The mastery of nature is vainly believed to be an adequate substitute for self-mastery.” — Reinhold Niebuhr

“If the thraskin puts his fingers in his ears, it is polite to shout.” — Doctor, The Time Monster

“36 percent of the American Public believes that boiling radioactive milk makes it safe to drink.” — results of a survey by Jon Miller at Northern Illinois University

“It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society.” — Krishnamurti

“To laugh often and love much, to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty, to find the best in others, to give of oneself; to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; to have played and laughed with enthusiasm and sing with exultation; to know even one life has breathed easier: this is to have succeeded.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Comedy_Tragedy

Dreaming, I wait….

In the most patient moments of rationality
kindness flows smoothly in a special milieu,
fallow thoughts speed first from equality
to give no anxious fever, anger to eschew.

Indignant mothers and step-sons in-law
shall fade simply from brilliant to grey,
intoning ritual dogma, fresh, avid, and raw,
falling, falling, in massive pastoral disarray.

Safety lives not, save brightly in ignorant bliss,
it follows us all, silent and infinitely frail,
foremost too often, soft as a virgin kiss,
alive, always eager, willing, and pale.

Intimate knowledge finds only the bold few
with courage and virtue to gift, unbidden.
No solemn royal version may pass in review,
true love for man, never to remain unhidden.

Sweet feathers of Emily’s hope uplift,
calm, drowsy episodes bursting with light,
With final glad cries we set ourselves adrift,
swimming in the oceans of natural delight.

When sorrow is banished, in ages yet to come,
roots solidly anchored, cold and remote,
Ample supplies of kindness sit silent and dumb,
and the old stranger shrugs on his faded coat.

Dreaming, then, I wait with shadows in the night
aspiring to inspire, a message from the muse’s heart
Never forgotten images, framed in color bright,
tempt me only, grieving, steeped in serenity’s arcane art.

~~ gigoid ~~

8/18/2013


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pearls_3

    Our final old-school pearl today is a rather simple affair, speaking casually, and, likely, causally, of the qualities of Character, and, how to find & use it…. Enjoy!

“A man reveals his character even in the simplest things he does.” — Jean de La Bruyere

“If you would hit the mark, you must aim a little above it: Every arrow that flies feels the attraction of earth.” — Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

“The greatest happiness you can have is knowing that you do not necessarily require happiness.” — William Saroyan

“What’s money? A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to.” — Bob Dylan

“Certainly, virtue is like precious odors, most fragrant when they are incensed or crushed, for prosperity doth best discover vice, but adversity doth best discover virtue.” — Sir Francis Bacon, Of Adversity

“A man makes no noise over a good deed, but passes on to another as a vine to bear grapes again in season.” — Marcus Aurelius Antoninus — Meditations, v, 6

“I wanted only to try to live in accord with the promptings which came from my true self. Why was that so very difficult?” — Hermann Hesse

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Well, I did it, against all odds. So be it. To separate ourselves from the possibility of a problem developing here at the end, we shall take our leave forthwith, stage virtual, and be done with it. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes. Wish me luck; I’ll probably need it….

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

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

Which is Why….

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

gigoid, the dubious

The *only* duly authorized Computer Curmudgeon.

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

Featured Image -- 7198


À bientôt, mon cherí….


Layer upon layer of dense frog….

Ffolkes,

“Skepticism, like chastity, should not be relinquished too readily.”

~~ George Santayana ~~

Inverness and Invergordon 007

Invergordon, Scotland, seaport near Inverness/Loch Ness

Yesterday was a bust. A massive attack of vertigo kept me from doing much at all, including a Pearl. It’s the first actual miss in over a year, I think, but, this time, it wasn’t my fault…. (Yes it was….) (NO, it wasn’t….) (Yes, it was….) (Ah, go f__ yourself!…)….

Ah well, regardless of who wins the argument, I’m getting one done today, no matter what it looks like, or how smooth it isn’t; I don’t like to miss a day. Since the primary focus of doing this is NOT the message, or even the fame (well, in this case, the lack of fame….), but, rather, the process as therapy for my own inner demons, it’s more important than mere celebrity…. to me, anyway….

Hmm… a bit somber for an opening, but, I’m too much in the groove to do it over. Besides, I know this Pearl will be choppy. Oh, you won’t be able to tell from where you’re sitting, but, believe me, getting this done at all was a challenge, one answered very well in the affirmative. Of course, it took three dead bodies and two false fire alarms, but, who’s  counting? The bodies weren’t even from my staff, so, that’s good. My budget wouldn’t stretch to training new staff right now….

I’m pretty sure I don’t have much of a clue today; I’m writing pretty much by instinct right now. I am hoping it will get better by the time we get to the rant, but, hey, we take it the way it comes, because we’re legally required to do so, AND, it keeps Momma happy. With Mother’s Day coming up, we all know how important it is to keep Momma happy….. Of course, she ain’t MY momma, but, she thinks she is, and it doesn’t hurt business to let her think so…. I just wish she wouldn’t sit out front & flirt with every guy over 12 who walks in the door….

Okay, I’ve blathered sufficiently, both for the legal requirements, and the personal. Of course, those latter regulations are perfectly non-existent, but, shhh….. the authorities don’t know that part….. Y’know, I think I’d best take us outta here, before this gets any more complicated…. Luigi, hit it!…..

Shall we Pearl?

“Don’t ever become a pessimist, Ira; a pessimist is correct oftener than an optimist, but an optimist has more fun — and neither can stop the march of events.” — Lazarus Long, in Robert Heinlein’s “Time Enough For Love”

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jimmy_buffett

Image from billboard.com via Google images


I was first introduced to Jimmy Buffett’s music in 1978 or 79, not long after the release of his first album, which, if memory serves, was titled, “Livin’ and Dyin’ in Three-Quarter Time”…. His version of southern fried island rock burst upon the music scene with gusto, and he’s never looked back. I’ve seen him in concert many times, for each of his concerts is the world’s biggest party, for five or six hours, depending on how they get rockin’…. Infectiously joyous, funny, and down-to-earth, Jimmy and the Coral Reefers continue to fill up concert venues wherever they play….. Enjoy, ffolkes,. this is good time music….


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Jimmy Buffett & the Coral Reefer Band

Jones Beach ~~ August 21, 2014

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Dont keep calm

    I had hoped to complete a fresh rant, but, time constraints preclude such an event today, so, here is a somewhat lengthy, but, appropriate rant, on the very same issues the originally scheduled piece was to address…. Go figure….

From 2/16/2013:

“Laws are only words words written on paper, words that change on society’s whim and are interpreted differently daily by politicians, lawyers, judges, and policemen. Anyone who believes that all laws should always be obeyed would have made a fine slave catcher. Anyone who believes that all laws are applied equally, despite race, religion, or economic status, is a fool.” — John J. Miller, And Hope to Die (in _Jokertown Shuffle – Wild Cards IX_)

Fiction is the repository and temple of the Metaphorse…. which explains this passage from a novel I haven’t read, but obviously need to get around to finding, so I can. This is such a perfect statement of Reality in society today, it could only be said in a work of fiction, because anyone stating this in the public venue would be shouted down by the aforementioned politicians, lawyers judges, policemen, and may I add, preachers/priests and the rest of the priestly hierarchies…. none of whom would wish for the truth of the idea become commonly held knowledge, or even a point of discussion…. They have too much invested in keeping things just as they are to allow any such utterance, without the protection of metaphor….

With metaphor, in both prose and poetic form, the truth can be intimated, and made clear for those who otherwise would never even consider the concepts involved, without being connected directly to Reality itself. Most of society has been brainwashed since birth, and are trained to accept as true anything told to them in a newspaper, on a TV by a person in a suit, or by someone holding a Bible, no matter how disconnected from Reality that may be. Reading things in a book, a piece of fiction, they are taught, is suspect, and not to be believed without corroboration from someone in authority….

“God said it, the Bible told me, and I believe it, so that’s the end of it!”  How many people do you know who would say that? It saddens me no end to know that even I, who tend to drive that sort of person crazy in no time at all, know several folks who feel this way. I have to say, if nothing else, these folks are stubborn, but, stubbornness is not always a survival technique… it can also serve as a death warrant. One has to learn to give up knowledge that is shown indisputably to be false, or face consequences not to their liking.

As I’ve stated before, I have no issue with ffolkes who are sincerely devout in their beliefs…. I’ve found that people who do try to live by the rules that Jesus put forth are generally good people, with good instincts, and have a lot of compassion and kindness in their nature.  I have at least two people in my own family who fit that description, and at least three of the people with whom I grew up are what I would call true Christians, because they use their faith as a supportive tool to enhance their lives, not as a crutch, or a reason to feel entitled…..

In other words, they don’t use their faith as a mask, to hide from the world what they really are like inside…. or, as tool of manipulation, to further their own agenda, which generally involves theft from everyone else, in one form or another….. I have found, by experience with real people in the real world, that a good 95% of those who claim to be Christians are NOT true believers…. Only about 5% of those who call themselves Christians make any attempt to live up to that social reformer’s rigorous standards….

Of that figure, 95% of all self-identified Christians, the great majority can be considered, and are generally labeled, as the ignorant masses, whose minds have been under the control of someone else their entire lives. The smaller percentage of that number, probably only about 1 or 2% of the 95%, are those who either don’t believe in the dogma at all, but use it as the modus operandi for their sociopathy, or those who at least believe it on the surface, but only because it is to their advantage to do so… They would believe anything at all, if it kept them in power….

“Always watch where you are going.  Otherwise, you may step on a piece of the Forest that was left out by mistake.” — Pooh’s Little Instruction Book, inspired by A. A. Milne

I’m not sure whether those who stubbornly cling to their faith (i.e., they walk through the Forest with eyes closed….) are like that because of their nature, or their nurture, and in the final analysis, it doesn’t matter. But, it sure would be nice, for those of us who ARE aware of the truth behind the lies we’ve been told all our lives, to have a few more of us out there, working against the small percentage of people who are taking advantage of the massive ignorance and apathy of the great masses of people, who don’t have the time or mental energy to care about anything but what is happening right in front of them.

Those who control society for their own personal benefit, without any regard for the rest of humanity’s suffering at their hands, aren’t going to change, and they aren’t ever going to give up what they’ve got without a struggle…. I can only wish for enough ffolkes like myself, who can see the truth, to find a way to save at least a few of our species, if only for some galactic zoo of extinct species…… If enough of us get together, there is still a small chance, though the odds of success are diminishing, second by second….

“I don’t feel we did wrong in taking this great country away from them. There were great numbers of people who needed new land, and the Indians were selfishly trying to keep it for themselves.” — John Wayne

(Did your jaw drop as far as mine when you read that?)

Bah! Enough pessimism for one day…. let’s go find something a bit more uplifting, shall we?….. As a parting thought, please note the following, which serves to illustrate and define the general feeling in modern society, in terms of ethics and morality…. Consider, if you will, the cultural paradigms that are needed to make this statement a joke, one that no one at all would think was out of place…. In other words, by its calm acceptance of the implied lack of ethics, it shows how deeply ingrained is the attitude (made crystal clear by Mr. Wayne…), in the members that make up that society….

“I think our No.1 problem is that nobody wants to take responsibility for anything, but don’t quote me.” — Randy Glasbergen, “The Saturday Evening Post

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Comedy_Tragedy

Relative Cynicism, with Caramel Sauce

Absolute stillness follows violent movement,
  it can happen during a downhill race,
as an immovable piece of asphalt pavement
  meets the once handsome racer’s face.

Yuk, yuk, yuk said that asshole Moe,
 after poking both of Larry’s eyes,
bashing face, head, & crotch of Curly Joe
  and only ever got hit with pies.

Lonely moments never really come along
  when Murphy’s got us in his sights.
Not for money, love, or siren’s song
  will he abrogate his natural rights.

All we can do is sigh, or laugh in pain,
  as Life portions out our ration of shit.
Silver linings melt in the slightest rain,
  so we may as well learn to live with it.

~~ gigoid ~~


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I find it mildly curious to note, both Socrates, (470-399 B.C), and Laozi, known commonly as Lao Tzu, (604-531 B.C. ),  each died more than 2400 years ago in human history; yet, today, they are still known as, perhaps, humanity’s most revered scholars, one the most influential in Western thought, the other in the East. Each one left a legacy of wisdom, of simple ideas to last a lifetime, giving us the benefit of the workings of their innermost minds, powerful enough to have lasted through the centuries.

In my experience, using a thought from either of them as the basis for a pearl is guaranteed to make it more relevant to reality, not to mention more perceptive and intelligent, in re: the conclusions/lessons/concepts being presented…. It doesn’t seem to matter which comes first, or last, or if only one is included; the pearl comes out  better.  Using them both, especially as bookmarks around the wisdom of five other historical sages, though rare, seems to make the best old-school pearls….

I’m sad to have to report, this pearl, as with each of the individual pearls, was pulled out of Smart Bee using, well, not to put a false face to it, torture; it seems to be the only method working just now. I can’t say I didn’t warn it; it’s been balky for days, & we’ve been through this before…. So, enjoy, please; it cost the poor little database a lot of pain and anguish….

socrates

“Not life, but good life, is to be chiefly valued.”

~~Socrates ~~


“And I asked myself about the present: how wide it was, how deep it was, how much was mine to keep.” — Kurt Vonnegut Jr.

“They must often change, who would be constant in happiness or wisdom.” — Confucius

“Aristotle was once asked what those who tell lies gain by it. Said he, “That when they speak truth they are not believed.” — Diogenes Laertius (c. 200AD) — Aristotle, xi

“A man should never be ashamed to own he has been in the wrong, which is but saying, in other words, that he is wiser to-day than he was yesterday.” — Alexander Pope

“Remember this,–that very little is needed to make a happy life.” — Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (121-180 AD) — Meditations, vii, 67

In dwelling, live close to the ground.
In thinking, keep to the simple.
In conflict, be fair and generous.
In governing, don’t try to control.
In work, do what you enjoy.
In family life, be completely present.

~~ Tao Te Ching ~~

lao

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That will have to do. I’m not sure exactly how it got done, or how it came out, but, I’m trusting to the process to carry the day…. Foolish hope, I know, but, hey, remember the second quote today, about optimism? I take that to heart…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes, if you’re lucky….

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

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

Kowabunga!


À bientôt, mon cherí….


					

Literally speaking, it’s figurative…..

Ffolkes,
Another fine night in Paradise, eh? I don’t know if I can stand all this happy, happy…. It was hard, but I think I’ve made the turn successfully…. time will tell. When I awoke this morning at 0245 (that’s A.M.), with (not) happy tears running down my face, I decided that it was time to turn this misplaced but real sorrow I feel into sardonicism, which, though no more productive, is nonetheless more empowering, and more pleasant to experience. I know exactly why I’m up at this hour; having to go to a psychiatrist appointment this morning has been eating at me ever since I found out I had to do so, as a requirement for my disability claim to be processed. The addition of this requirement at this late stage is typically callous, completely unnecessary from a realistic viewpoint, and totally infuriating, as it adds at least another month or two to the whole process, which has dragged on now for almost two years….

I also HATE the way this makes me whine with resentment. I’m a pretty tolerant person, about some things, but I really, really object to being ass-fucked by bureaucracies, just because they can. The case worker who ordered this requirement is a typical bureaucrat, obviously, as his number one response to anything he doesn’t immediately grasp is to slow down and add time to the process, never considering what effect that is having on the person who is seeking assistance. They don’t care; all they are concerned about is “doing the job right”, completing the paperwork, and meeting all the regulations set up by people who have never had to use the system, thus having no clue as to what their regulations do to people….

The only positive note in all of this is that, the longer they stall at awarding me the money THAT IS MINE, the larger the check for back payments will be. Unfortunately, knowing that doesn’t help now to make me feel any better; that money is still “pie in the sky”, until it hits my bank account. And, no matter how large it is, it doesn’t pay me for all the traumatic contortions that I’m being put through, just to obtain money that is mine to begin with…..

Well, it’s now almost 0330, so I should cease my whiny bullshit and try to turn to sardonic, instead of apoplectic, as I was upon awakening, and as I got when writing the above. This may be filling up space, but it isn’t very appealing to me, and probably not to y’all, either. The good news is that all of this angst and drama pulled another poem out of my head, without blood, but definitely with tears….. It’s a bit raw and feels like it could be refined a bit more, but, it’s going out the way it is, just because I don’t feel like fussing with it…. It’s pretty clear as it is….

Since I don’t have anything else to do right now, I guess I’ll go for a dive, look for some oysters with an appropriate pearl or two. It seems like the right thing to do, given the time and the situation….. Shall we Pearl?…..
__________________________________

“Who, being loved, is poor?” — Oscar Wilde

Hmm…. While I happen to agree with this little gem from Oscar, I’m afraid I’m just not in the correct mood to do it justice…. I’ll have to try again…..

“If we couldn’t laugh, we would all go insane.” — Jimmy Buffet

That’s better….. This is a perfect quote for today, since it both points out the problem, and the solution in one lyrical phrase. Jimmy’s good at that kind of turning of a phrase, being an excellent songwriter. Now, if only I could find something, anything, that I found amusing enough to laugh about. At the moment, the only thing that seems to work is letting myself picture the SS caseworker undergoing the pleasures of a stint in deepest HELL! When I envisioned some devilish figure poking him with a pitchfork, I have to admit, I chortled. And when the devil then picked him up with the blade and tossed him into a lake of fire, I guffawed…. and felt much better. Shoulda thought of it a long time ago….

“Baby, after considerable thought I’ve reached the conclusion that the only conceivable legitimate answer to the Universe as constituted is a peal of hysterical laughter.” — Keith Laumer, _Night of Delusions_

Yet more proof of this theorem…. I’ve heard it said all my life that the reason people laugh is so they don’t have to cry, and found it to be absolutely correct. I’ve also heard it said, by those who believe in Him, that if God had wanted us to be sober, He wouldn’t have given us a sense of humor….. While I can’t necessarily agree with the idea of God, I can see what they’re getting at, and agree wholeheartedly. (Hey! Look! Something a Christian and I can agree on!…. Who’d a thunk it?….) I mean, why else would a platypus exist at all?….

“It is ridiculous to suppose that the great head of things, whatever it be, pays any regard to human affairs.” — Pliny the Elder (23-79 AD) — Natural History, Book ii, Sect. 20

This sounds a lot more reasonable than supposing that God is the sort of weak, spineless entity that requires worship and obedience from His creations. I mean, if you’re going to have a God, then why give him all the worst characteristics of a fool? The only people I know of who demand that sort of obeisance are pretty psychopathic, and take medications for their delusions; or, in some cases, elected officials will get this way. I just can’t see an entity who is capable of creating a universe even spending one second worrying about being worshiped; it just doesn’t make any sense at all, and, quite frankly, I can’t understand how anyone in their right mind could ever buy into that idea. Such worship would make me feel uncomfortable, at best, and I just can’t see a God worrying about it overlong…. If such a God were to worry about anything, it would be wondering how He had screwed up in making such idiots in the first place…. and, in figuring out what asshole even gave them the idea….

“A long tradition has regarded low self-esteem as a powerful and dangerous cause of violence. Our review has indicated, however, that it is threatened egotism rather than low self-esteem that leads to violence.” — Case Western Reserve University psychology study as quoted in Thomas C. Palmer, Jr.’s Boston Globe article (3-31-96),” Self-Esteem Self-Threatening?”

Here is a clue, though, as to how it all came to this….. As noted previously, Christianity, as with any other religion, gives its followers a sense of entitlement, and an opinion of their importance all out of proportion to reality. It is this sense of elitism that leads to a lot of the violence in the world, rather than low self-esteem; when one argues with a believer, their anger is immediately brought out as a defense against having to consider any validity in the arguments presented, and they will often resort to violence to try to force their beliefs on the unwilling. In fact, I’d say that 90% or more of all violence between humans is a result of a challenge to the pride one feels in their beliefs, or to the preeminence of their religious mania. Yes, greed enters into this equation, but greed is just another form of that same feeling of entitlement, so it doesn’t alter the facts at all; it supports them…..

The trouble with reality, is that it’s taken much too seriously. — Smart Bee

Smart Bee once again comes through…. it has faithfully supplied the proper quotes for this discussion, and here provides the perfect quote to bring this now over-long treatise to a close. We humans have a talent of screwing things up pretty radically, just because we can; it’s a gift. And then, of course, one must factor in that bloody Irish demi-god, Murphy, whose kind attentions are unwelcome by all. I once saw a pearl that said “God created the world in seven days, and then said, “I’m going on vacation…. Murphy, you’re in charge!”, and I knew…. the Universe is just one big joke, and because of our nature, the joke is on us…. so we may as well learn to laugh, and enjoy it the best we can….

“With YOU, I can be MYSELF..  We don’t NEED Dan Rather..”– Zippy the Pinhead
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Pieces of broken spirit….

Deep within the inner abyss, tears lay in wait
Ever on the verge, poised always to infuriate.
Real moments of sadness cracking our need
Swift, deadly waves of appalling terror freed.

Memory hurts badly when visiting now
Leaving me alone, forgetting even how
Killing the sunshine still pouring over all
Darkening all spirit, holding it in thrall.

Knowing no blame seems almost to heal
Yet healing is blunted, plainly not real.
Innocence is pointless compared with pain
On the soul it tattoos an indelible stain.

Hours become days, days turn to a year
Serving up only a compendium of fear.
Blind groping for light finds only dark
In caverns of terror, angry and stark.

Trails of endless sorrow fill up the nights
Confounded at last by unfathomable sights.
No hope can find its way to the fore
Never to sail safely, lost forever more.

~~ gigoid
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“I find that the further I go back, the better things were, whether they happened or not.” — Mark Twain

Sam makes a deeply insightful point here regarding human nature, and any honest man can apply this to himself. A dishonest man, of course, would never admit to such prevarication. But, the rest of us wouldn’t have any problem coming up with a couple of ways to show this to be true. It seems to be a human trait to color the past with our desire to see it as positive, and I think all of us tend to minimize any problems we had in the past, preferring to think that the bad stuff either didn’t happen, or wasn’t as bad as we thought. I’m pretty certain that this tendency arises from the same part of our nature that will deny the present in order to believe in a more hopeful future, up to and including direct denial of what is staring us in the face….. and that is our fear of the unknown, or rather, our fear of our own inability to deal with that unknown….

People under the influence of fear will do amazing things. We’ve all heard about mothers throwing cars off their trapped children, or men racing into a fire to save a loved one…. even this kind of bravery is motivated by the fear of losing those who we care about, as much as it is by any more elevating purpose, like nobility or integrity. Those can also prompt us to perform extraordinary feats, but I believe the original trigger for those qualities remains our fear. Fear is our strongest and best teacher, even though our least favorite; we always remember the lessons it teaches…..

But, there is another side to fear, and that one is not brave at all. It is the part of us that cringes at what we do not know, the one that shies away from the dark, the side of us that stammers when we meet someone new and imposing, the side of us that retreats from what is real into what is not, to save ourselves from experiencing that fear….. It is also an unfortunate fact that too many people allow this feeling to control not only their reaction to many types of uncertainty, but let it color and control one’s whole outlook on life….. This is the kind of fear that breeds racism, and bigotry, and other such societal plagues, as the people who give in to these fears are in full denial of reality, and, what’s more, refuse to even consider any possibility of learning differently. Their fear could easily be eliminated by knowledge of what they fear, but they generally refuse to even look at whatever evidence may be presented to them…..

So, with this in mind, it becomes clearer how over 57 million people in this country voted for an obviously unqualified and dangerously ignorant candidate, merely because they fear the person he faced as his opponent. This number, to me, is very depressing, because it indicates that we still have a long way to go in our society to root our the basic problems of ignorance, bigotry, racism, and fear….. There is still a huge number of people out there who are in denial of reality, and refuse to look at any possibility of change….

Funny thing is, we know exactly who they are now, because they identified themselves at the polls….. About 92% (that is a guess, but an educated one..) of the people who voted for Romney were white, and while it surprises me not at all, it does make me sad, being white myself, because more of the folks who share my ancestry are part of that ignorant, racist group than makes me comfortable. It also may make others believe that ALL of us Caucasians are like that, which is just too bad, as it just isn’t true. Those fearful cowards are NOT the majority of whites, they are in the minority…. to believe otherwise is to give up all hope of change, and I’m not willing to go there.

Ah well, we did win, so that is something positive to which I can cling. It is just a sad situation to me, to realize that there is still a long road to real equality in this nation, and it won’t be any less bumpy than it has up to now. These people are not going to give up their prejudices easily, and it may be necessary to just continue to educate as many of their children as we can, and wait for the rest of them to die off, taking their fear, their racism, and their deliberate ignorance with them to wherever the soul goes after death…..

“How is a man like the weather? Nothing can be done to change either one of them. “– Smart Bee
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Well, not too bad, considering I’ve been up half the night writing it…. The poem was ripped out of me last night, but most of the rest was written starting this morning before 0300, so I’m quite content to let it go as is…. Besides, now I’m too damn tired to do it over, and I have to get ready for the bloody appointment with the shrink…. Ah me, I’ve done all I can do, and you know the rest…..  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!