Lofty goals, impudent desires….

Ffolkes,

“…life is long enough if it is well-spent.”

~~ Erasmus ~~

Magic 004

How to relax….

Hajime…. Today, along with the rest of this week, (and, the rest of the month, the way it is developing), is busy, with events taking place out in the BBR. It will take up most of the day, so, I have worked hard to complete this Pearl, as I am unsure when I’ll be able to get another fresh one done. The good news, for me, is, I finished the discussion/rant on which I’ve spent a week or more. It isn’t quite as planned, but, it’s definitely a feast for the mind, so, it will do. The rest is pretty much a throw-together, with another of my old poems, and an archived pearl of pearls for the last section. Since it all flowed together smoothly, I’ll take it, and be content. So, then, must you…. I mean, that’s what blogging is, right? Right….

All that being said, to our regular lack of defined purpose, I’ll make this intro a short one; they seem to work best for days such as the one in which we currently find ourselves. I shan’t apologize; I shall, however, issue a warning. To make it through this one, you’ll need to put on your thinking caps, if you have one; the following is NOT for the weak-minded, or, anyone who is afraid to challenge their own beliefs. It’s all about doubt, which remains our most relevant tool for finding our way in life…. a statement we’ll defend another time, if necessary. Today, we’re going elsewhere, with gusto….

That’ enough; we/I have a lot to do today. Let’s begin, while we are still fresh….

Shall we Pearl?

There is nothing like death. To it, everything is a metaphor.

~~ Subtle Bee ~~

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“You’re not ready for what I think.”

~~ Fox Mulder ~~

Plato-Aristotle

“History does not record anywhere at any time
a religion that has any rational basis.
Religion is a crutch for people not strong enough
to stand up to the unknown without help.
But, like dandruff, most people do have a religion
and spend time and money on it
and seem to derive considerable pleasure from fiddling with it.”

~~ Robert Heinlein, Time Enough for Love (1972) ~~

The above passage from Mr. Heinlein happens to be one of my favorites, in all I have read, in more than 60 years of pursuing the truth in books. In that sixty years, I’ve read an average of a book every other day; I no longer claim one per day, though I managed that average for the first 45 years or so; I’ve slowed some, trading quality for quantity in these latter years. In all that time, I have found this to be the most tactful, sardonic, and accurate statement summarizing my own thoughts, and my own opinion on the matter of religion.

I know such a statement meets with knitted brow, (I can hear the needles clacking together…), showing obvious disapproval from the majority of humankind; I noticed that at age four, the first time I asked my Sunday School teacher to explain the nonsense I was hearing there. I have noted no lesser degree of disbelief from almost everyone in the ensuing years, though not so frequently as if I had not learned to avoid discussions of religion, at least without some observable indications of an open mind. Since turning 60, or so, I’ve given up caring if people get offended, as I simply no longer care what they think about it, and am prepared to discuss it with anyone who cares to risk it.

Moreover, I’m not alone in my distrust of religions, especially the one in which I was made the subject of attempted indoctrination, almost from birth. Quite a number of the men who led the struggle to formulate this country, whom we were raised to call our “Founding Fathers”, also shared this mistrust. For example, here are some of their thoughts on the matter, followed by a closing thought from a modern poet….

“But a short time elapsed after the death
of the great reformer of the Jewish religion,
before his principles were departed
from by those who professed to be his special servants,
and perverted into an engine for enslaving mankind,
and aggrandizing t heir oppressors in Church and State.”

~~ Thomas Jefferson, [letter?] To S. Kercheval, 1810 ~~

*******

“What is it the Bible teaches us? – rapine, cruelty, and murder.
What is it the Testament teaches us?
– to believe that the Almighty committed debauchery
with a woman engaged to be married,
and the belief of this debauchery is called faith.”

~~ Thomas Paine — The Age of Reason ~~

*******

“All national institutions of churches, whether Jewish, Christian, or Turkish,
appear to me no other than human inventions,
set up to terrify and enslave mankind, and monopolize power and profit.”

~~ Thomas Paine ~~

*******

“The divinity of Jesus is made a convenient cover for absurdity.
Nowhere in the Gospels do we find a precept
for Creeds, Confessions, Oaths, Doctrines,
and whole carloads of other foolish trumpery
that we find in Christianity.”

~~ John Adams ~~

*******

“…this would be the best of all possible worlds,
if there were no religion in it.”

~~ John Adams, Letter to Thomas Jefferson, 1816 ~~

*******

For those who believe in God, most of the big questions are answered.
But for those of us who can’t readily accept the God formula,
the big answers don’t remain stone-written.
We adjust to new conditions and discoveries.
We are pliable.
Love need not be a command or faith a dictum.
I am my own God.
We are here to unlearn the teachings
of the church, state, and our educational system.
We are here to drink beer.
We are here to kill war.
We are here to laugh at the odds
and live our lives so well that Death will tremble to take us.”

~~ Charles Bukowski ~~

Let’s finish this part…. For just a moment, wrap your head around the following statement, without attaching any emotional or even intellectual importance to whether it is true, or, not: “There is no God, or gods. No Allah, no Jehovah/Yahweh, no Jesus, no Krishna, nor any supernatural force which created/controls the universe.”

Got that idea? Is it comprehensible, simply as a statement of alternative possibility? I contend this statement is the Truth of Reality; in fact, I contend there is no rational reason to suspect otherwise.

Further, the belief there is such an entity has caused more harm to our species than any other single idea. It has caused people to be divided from each other, over something that merely plays upon their fears of the unknown to manipulate them into serving purposes that have no benefit for them, beyond an ignoble death, at the hands of another person suffering from the same manipulation, by another name.

Even worse, this ‘belief’ predisposes humans to then transfer their ‘belief’ to other ideas that are not in their self-interest, such as believing one is better, or worse than any other human, simply because of where they were born, or the amount of pigment in their skin, or that money implies worth. Humans are not naturally hierarchal; we all die, so what is to make one ‘better’ than another? Yet we find it easy to believe in such hierarchal fantasies, to the point of offering up our lives for an idea we never thought ourselves, but, had planted in our head before we knew enough to be able to tell for ourselves….

You see, the idea that humans NEED a government to solve their issues between each other is yet another silly notion, not supported by reality. The concept of money as a part of reality necessary to our success is also a false idea; there is nothing hierarchal about Nature, of which money is NOT a part. Yet, because humans are easily convinced, by their training to believe ideas are real, people set themselves up to fail, to be manipulated to expend their efforts and their attention on matters which serve no useful (to them) purpose….

“Patriotism is the willingness to kill and be killed for trivial reasons.”

~~ Bertrand Russell ~~

*******

“Some writers have so confounded society with government,
as to leave little or no distinction between them;
whereas they are not only different, but have different origins.
Society is produced by our wants,
and government by our wickedness;
the former promotes our happiness *positively*,
by uniting our affections,
the latter *negatively*, by restraining our vices.
The one encourages intercourse,
the other creates distinctions.
The first is a patron, the last is a punisher.
Society in every state is a blessing,
but government even in its best state is but a necessary evil;
in its worst state an intolerable one….”

~~ Thomas Paine, opening lines of _Common Sense_ 1776 ~

~~ *asterisks denote Paine’s use of italics* ~~

*******

“Money made a vow to itself, that no one who didn’t love it, would ever have it.”

Irish Proverb

As can be easily seen, merely by reading the history of our species, this trio of delusions, i.e., religion, government, and money, has caused more strife, conflict, and needless death, than any other single idea, for all the time since we began to gather in cities. It has been shown that humans lose their ability to function as a truly human animal when there are more than 200 or so sets of eyes; as we gather in towns, & cities, this number grows beyond our personal need for community, and the rules of engagement between people begin to fray, and those who have the need to control others, due to their own inner fears & perversions of spirit, begin manipulating the weak minded, and we see the development of rules and hierarchies to manipulate people into losing their own self-control of what serves their interests, in the mistaken belief it is necessary, when, in truth, what is necessary is increased personal responsibility, and self-reliance.

“The races of the Galaxy look towards mankind as the essential lunatic element.”

~~ Terry Pratchett, “Strata”, pg. 60 ~~

In sixty years of observing and studying human history, and humanity itself, both individually, and, as a species, I’ve come to two conclusions. First, our most compelling talent, as proven by any historical tome anyone has written, or read, is the ability to think of endless, inventive ways to kill each other, or anything else we come across in our wandering about the face of the earth. Second, almost everything we have invented, as weapons, is simply a more complicated method of throwing rocks, both sharp, and dull; most everything we have created as tools & systems/skills for use as non-weapons, is a response to this talent, in that it is designed to keep ourselves, in one way or another, from getting killed, mostly by each other….

Both sides of this talent, of course, stem from our imagination, which, in the most pure analysis, has been shown to be little more than an anomaly of our consciousness; neither can be quantified, or touched, or in any way seen to be a part of the reality we perceive through our physical senses. In short, it may be, as some speculate, merely a local phenomenon, in this small corner of the universe we perceive elsewhere, all around us, but too far to reach physically. This paradoxical sense, I think, is what gives most humans the tendency to ‘imagine’ themselves to be more than they actually are, denying completely the simple truth of reality as it exists, to assume that reality is what we imagine it to be. In short, we are able to deny our own nature….

Perhaps this is why so many are willing to believe in the lies and untruths on which our entire culture has been based for so long. In truth, we may never know; I probably won’t; if I haven’t been able to figure it out by now, I don’t think I have enough time left on this particular plane of existence to do so. Perhaps, after I have gone on to the next great adventure, the answers will be made clear; then again, anything, at all, can be no more than speculation, thus, exercising again that imagination… I’ve figured out enough to not believe anything that comes from that source; it tends to be less than real, at least as often as it is more so….

Enough, he cried, enough…. ‘Tis a feast, no more is needed.

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playing-for-change

Finishing the rant/discussion above took up all the spare time I had, so, we go with default, as is our wont. This is the original video, which started the whole idea of the organization. All of it is great music, by street musicians, along with the occasional music star to add their talent to the mix. I hope you enjoy it, and take the time to support the organization, which spreads love, and joy, and human kindness in all its branches, now located around the world at their music schools… Check our their website, it’s worth the time….

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Playing For Change

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Comedy_Tragedy

In case it isn’t clear, this poem, written over four years ago, is a rather complex version of the rant/discussion above, though, at the time, I didn’t know that…. *grin*…. I hope you enjoy it anyway….

Fatal Supplication

But what becomes of our deepest dangerous dreams?
Does fantasy rescue any part of life’s imperiled favor?
Reality becomes but silvery pairs of mismatched teams,
Dining with affable elegance, such diffident waste to savor.

Who decides what sorrows to carry bravely to term?
Will fragrant moments of sanity make hasty manifestation?
Only Time’s patient mutability sends messages so firm,
Yet salient impersonal vexation lends credence to ripe imagination.

Can folly bring out sadness and rampant visions of beauty?
What kindness can be found in distant open relations?
With countless faces the dead disturb with dire impunity,
From separate caches of wisdom come simple stylish privations.

Shall shallow emotion serve to provide such explanations?
When does avaricious intensity assume primary focus?
Plain answers slide softly through with multiple mitigations,
While conceptually indignant concepts engage a fatally personal locus.

~~ gigoid ~~

9/20/2012

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pearls_3

I’m in a bit of a hurry, for reasons I explained above, so, we’re filling in the final section with a group of pearls from an archived Pearl, which, oddly enough, fits right in with today’s post…. Go figure, eh? At any rate, it’s a good way to finish this off with some aplomb, if not complete dignity…. Enjoy!….

From 9/7/2012:

Having just spent three hours (okay, I exaggerated…. only two….) searching in vain for a pearl to finish with, I became incensed with frustration, and rather than scare my new neighbors with a verbal outburst, I calmly set a parameter, and collected the following pearls on one subject, to wit: human nature…. As far as I can tell, all of them rate a solid 10 on the truth scale….. As always, just follow the bouncing thought as it explores your own inner self….

“The world always makes the assumption that the exposure of an error is identical with the discovery of truth–that the error and truth are simply opposite. They are nothing of the sort. What the world turns to, when it is cured on one error, is usually simply another error, and maybe one worse than the first one.” — H. L. Mencken

“The ultimate evil is the weakness, cowardice, that is one of the constituents of so much human nature. When, rarely, unalloyed nobility does occur, its chances of prevailing are slim. Yet it exists, and its mere existence is reason enough for not wiping the name of mankind off the slate.” — John Simon

“We are all terrible little creatures.” — Martin Amis

“The tragedy and the magnificence of Homo sapiens together rise from the same smoky truth that we alone among the animal species refuse to acknowledge natural law.” — Robert Ardrey, _The Social Contract_

“Man, were he not corrupted by Governments, is naturally the friend of Man, and that human nature is not of itself vicious.” — Thomas Paine

“I think we’re all Bozos on this Bus!” — Firesign Theater

Now I feel better….. and I hope you do, as well….

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Okay!…. That went well, for a change. This is one I put a lot into; in a certain sense, it might be considered an iconic Pearl, a representative of all Pearls, with an example of all of what I do. Of course, I don’t see it addressing any of the ‘why’ I do it, but, hey, we can’t have everything. At least, not all at once; that’s a bit much to expect…. At this point, you may expect your day to continue, and, in that, you’d be right. You see, this one is at an end; at least, as far as I can make it so. Since I can feel it slipping away from me, I’ll just say this…. See ya, ffolkes. I’ll be back, in a day, or possibly two, depending on how efficiently I can deal with the demands upon me set by what is happening out in the Big Blue Room. Should be an interesting week; lets get started on it, ‘kay? ‘Kay! Be cool, be strange, be alert, and most of all, keep those thinking caps close at hand….

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 -- 12021

À bientôt, mon cherí….

Scrap all the intricate filigree…

Ffolkes,

“There are many here among us who feel that life is but a joke.”

~~ Bob Dylan ~~

Angry bird

The Original Angry Bird

Hajime….. Since we begin with a such a cogent quote from one of our society’s most prolific and long-lived bards, I’ll have to try to keep this within the parameters thus implied. We’ll see how that goes, what with insomnia, curmudgeonly reaction to same, and an extended period of cat training yesterday, I’m in a bit of an odd mood. Sometimes that works well to improve the results here; other times, not so much. Whichever it might be, we’ll use our advanced sage training to make it palatable…. You know, good & bad don’t exist but in our minds, that sort of thing…

Of course, that presupposes I have the chutzpah and general wherewithal to pull of that kind of advanced philosophizing; the hour of the day can affect that heavily. I guess I just wait for the correct moment to apply the fix; once I’ve got enough coffee on board, that should be an obvious jumping-off point we can use to our advantage, such as we may. Otherwise, what happens could turn on us, making it hard to cash your checks, er, get y’all home in one piece….

Having thus assured us all the bozoid tendencies upon which we rely are firmly in place, we can, I think…. no, make that we must, I think, get ourselves out of this convoluted mess I call an intro, and on to the oyster beds, before it gets any more slippery/slimy than it has already gone. In fact, I’m going to use one of the new tricks I found in another drawer in the Tardis…. It’s pretty cool; all it does is this…..

Shall we Pearl?….

“To be possessed of a vigorous mind is not enough;
the prime requisite is rightly to apply it.”

 ~~ Descartes ~~


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The_Death_of_Socrates_cropped

The Death of Socrates

Image from en.wikipedia.org via Google Images


Today’s video selection is not musical, but, rather a sublimation for ranting, as it were. The social phenomenon that is Last Week Tonight showed, in the recent past, how powerful a tool the internet and media can combine to fashion, a tool that can actually change the course of societal events. I’ve included a link to the show’s You Tube page, where about 50 or more of the episodes are listed; the one with which we begin is a recent show, dealing with some of the issues we are seeing in today’s news…. I won’t say enjoy; I will say, pay the fuck attention…. It’s all stuff you’ll do better for knowing….


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John Oliver
Last Week Tonight

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le penseur-rodin

“I am free, no matter what rules surround me. If I find them tolerable, I tolerate them; if I find them too obnoxious, I break them. I am free because I know that I alone am morally responsible for everything I do.” — Professor Bernardo de la Paz

I am not sure when I first read the above statements from the professor, but, I know it was before the age of twenty. Even then, it struck a deep chord of familiarity, as if it were something I had always known. For sure and for certain it is I have lived my life by this standard, ever since my earliest memories…. It may have come from my family environment, or, perhaps it’s just a lucky gift of nature; I don’t much care, nor, worry over how it came to be, for it has made my life, if nothing else, my own, which, as far as I can see, is pretty rare.

I have a feeling it came from my father and mother, who taught us about personal responsibility; this was enforced by having four siblings, all of whom insisted on their own brand of individuality. Since we had the example set by our parents to follow, we all learned to accept life as it came, without the more obvious problems that can arise…. Oh, not to say it was paradise; no Army family of seven is ever completely peaceful. But, none of us ever suffered injustice or dishonesty from anyone at home, which gave us armor against those dangers in the world away from home.

Having this ‘advantage’, it makes it easy for me to see how lacking such a background could cause problems for people, both as individuals, and for society at large…. But, having put off completing this piece too long, I no longer have the urge, or the time to explain that statement…. For today, and now, let it suffice to say, the lack of ability to take personal responsibility for one’s actions, without causing undue inner struggle or conflict, is the primary reason our species cannot seem to find any peace. I see this failure of morality/ethical training as our single most telling flaw, one which, if we do not/can not discover how to negate, will eventually kill us all.

As I see reality, we have a choice. We can change our ways, and assume the weight of responsibility for our acts, and find a way to survive the coming cataclysmic environmental events. Or, we can die, ignobly, as the poet said, not with a bang, but a whimper. To my mind, it is that simple. Not, by any means, a simple task, but, a simple choice…. I’m not sanguine about which choice we’ll make…. For now, here are a few pearls which speak to the matter, in their own way…. Enjoy, ffolkes; it’s easier than listening to another of my interminable rants….

“Man is descended from a hairy, tailed quadruped, probably arboreal in its habits… For my part I would as soon be descended from [a] baboon… as from a savage who delights to torture his enemies … treats his wives like slaves … and is haunted by the grossest suspicions.” — Charles Darwin

“Despite its suffix, skepticism is not an “ism” in the sense of a belief or dogma.  It is simply an approach to the problem of telling what is counterfeit and what is genuine.  And a recognition of how costly it may be to fail to do so.  To be a skeptic is to cultivate “street smarts” in the battle for control of one’s own mind, one’s own money, one’w own allegiances.  To be a skeptic, in short, is to refuse to be a victim.” — Robert S. DeBear, “An Agenda for Reason, Realism, and Responsibility,” — New York Skeptic — (newsletter of the New York Area Skeptics, Inc.), Spring 1988

He’s not a politician.  He’s just ethically challenged.” — Morality Bee

“Abuse of words has been the great instrument of sophistry and chicanery, of party, faction, and division of society.” — John Adams

“Humanity has in the course of time had to endure from the hands of science two great outrages upon its naive self-love.  The first was when it realized that our earth was not the center of the universe, but only a speck in a world-system of a magnitude hardly conceivable…  The second was when biological research robbed man of his particular privilege of having been specially created, and relegated him to a descent from the animal world.” — Sigmund Freud

Okay…. I’m feeling generous; five is enough…. We’ll speak on this again, trust me…. For now, go enjoy the poem….

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Comedy_Tragedy

    It’s been a while since we heard from this poet; it’s time…. Enjoy! He’s a bit crusty, but, always hits people where it counts….

air and light and time and space

‘-you know, I’ve either had a family, a job, something
has always been in the
way
but now
I’ve sold my house, I’ve found this
place, a large studio, you should see the space and
the light.
for the first time in my life I’m going to have a place and
the time to
create.’
no baby, if you’re going to create
you’re going to create whether you work
16 hours a day in a coal mine
or
you’re going to create in a small room with 3 children
while you’re on
welfare,
you’re going to create with part of your mind and your
body blown
away,
you’re going to create blind
crippled
demented,
you’re going to create with a cat crawling up your
back while
the whole city trembles in earthquakes, bombardment,
flood and fire.
baby, air and light and time and space
have nothing to do with it
and don’t create anything
except maybe a longer life to find
new excuses
for.

~~ Charles Bukowski ~~


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About Hopi Indian Symbols

    Today’s final pearl, old-school variety, is special, but, don’t ask me why. Instead, read it, let it percolate a bit, then, decide for yourself why I might say that. I even gave y’all a clue, at the top of the section. If you require it, call it homework, or a challenge. Anything you want….. I call it

Esoterica/Life at Large


“You cannot put the same shoe on every foot.” — Publius Syrus (42 BC) — Maxim 596

“Be not careless in deeds, nor confused in words, nor rambling in thought.” — Marcus Aurelius Antoninus — Meditations, viii, 51

“We are being educated when we know it least.” — David Gardner

“All conversations with a potato should be conducted in private.” — Wilner’s Observation

“The more I traveled the more I realized that fear makes strangers of people who would be friends.” — Shirley MacLaine

“How you do anything is how you do everything.” — Zen proverb

“Life is too short for grief. Or regret. Or bullshit.” — Edward Abbey

“I know but one freedom, and that is the freedom of the mind.” — Antoine de Saint Exupery

“Life is a process of becoming, a combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death.” — Anais Nin

“But my dear man, reality is only a Rorschach ink-blot, you know.” — Alan Watts

Emancipate yourself from mental slavery,
None but ourselves can free our minds.

~~ Bob Marley ~~


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What an ordeal! Suffice it to say, again, it’s done. It was such an ordeal, I’ll not bore you further, but, will take my leave, stage virtual. I will, however, leave you with the knowledge of my return, tomorrow, should Fate be kind…. Of course, we make our own Fate, so, well, you get the picture…. If nobody stops me, I’ll be back…. See ya…..

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


À bientôt, mon cherí….


Seminal moments arrive randomly….

Ffolkes,

“Hate has a reason for everything.
But love is unreasonable.”

~~ V. Raiuhes Ahaefvthe ~~

the future

Future and Past


Hajime….. Life has again become ‘interesting’, in many ways. Fortunately, I’m up to the task of being fascinated by all the different ways things in reality can screw with our heads, so, all is reasonably well, in spite of lots & lots of pain, and a cat entering her first season. (Yep, she beat me; went into heat before I could get her to the vet…. SIGH. Murphy lives here….) She makes up for her yowling by being extra affectionate, enough to have prompted a new haiku you’ll see below…. Since reality is not in tatters, we’ll go ahead and post today….

Today’s poem is a paean to my pain, written a couple years ago, after a particularly bad day, like yesterday & the day before. It passes, but, sometimes, it just needs to be acknowledged with a few epithets, y’know? At any rate, today is better, as happens, so, we’ll quit the personal journal in favor of getting the slow on the toad…. In support of that, we’ll forgo any further nonsense, which I’m afraid is about all I’ve got this morning, if truth be known. Oh, well, he said. Let’s cover our tracks by making some…..

Shall we Pearl?….

“Who can all sense of others’ ills escape,
Is but a brute, at best, in human shape.”

~~ Juvenal ~~


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playing-for-change

    Here is the latest release from Playing For Change, one of the few worthy organizations I know of working for peace. This one is a rather excellent duet by a couple of guitarists from different countries, playing the blues together under a tree outside…. Enjoy, then, send them some money…. it’s a great cause….

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Fastock

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“Man is the only creature that refuses to be what he is.”

~~ Albert Camus ~~

Plato-Aristotle

“All warfare is based on deception.”

~~ Sun Tzu (ca. 500 BC) ~~


Our opening quote states the issue we face as a species; the second states the resultant outcome, in terms of the direction in which human society has evolved since the days of Plato and Aristotle, who are obviously arguing the points.

We humans have a rather large opinion of ourselves, in relation to our place in this universe. That is, no doubt, a direct result of having both more intelligence than we need as a living creature, and, an imagination which leads us to believe our own thoughts have power over reality. Both of these, sadly, have brought us to our current situation here on Earth, as both have been completely misunderstood, and badly handled by almost everyone who ever possessed both qualities.

Oh, sure, history relates the many wise men who have passed on their wisdom to us; our society, however, does not reflect ANY of the wisdom they shared. It reflects, most sadly, the second quote’s implications, which directly reflects our own nature, as beasts, and, as creatures of imagination. As a species, we have always been irritable creatures, jealous of our territory and possessions, constantly “at war” with the environment to wrest from it the necessary elements to survive. We learned to kill other creatures for food, as do many earth animals; we, however, raised the skill to a level at which no other species can compete, thus assuming, in our minds, the top of the food chain…..

How little we actually understand, of ourselves, or the world around us. Even if we are on the verge of space, and, the frontiers of many scientific discoveries, we know so little of how it all ties together, and, our own place in it, we are in danger of venturing into areas for which we are not equipped to handle, in such a way as to have any good result. I am not speaking of scientific breakthroughs, but, rather of spiritual inadequacies. How can we expect a species which preys upon its own members to be able to create life, or conquer a Universe, without first destroying themselves?

I don’t believe we can. It seems clear to me reality is giving us very clear warnings of late, that we have overstepped the boundaries of what we understand about our own planet, and ourselves. We are NOT as powerful as we think, and our fumbling around in this environment without such understanding is resulting in planetary changes of drastic nature, which very few people have the courage, or the wit to either understand, or admit. Not only do the assumed “leaders” of society refuse to acknowledge how little they actually know, almost every person alive is, because of societal prejudices and behavioral training, unwilling to use what intelligence they have to even examine the issue.

Society, since it first began, has viewed life as a ‘war’. This attitude is embedded in every culture on Earth, save a couple isolated from the rest for long periods in the beginning of civilization. Every human is taught to think of life as a struggle, a war against the universe, one which we can win, or lose, according to our beliefs. This, of course, does reflect the duality of our nature, which, though we mostly don’t know or admit it, War, as it were, became our society’s most used form of approaching life, and all its problems and issues…. including relations between people, at every societal level.

Thus, we see the Art of War, Sun Tzu’s brilliant summarization of the basic principles of successful campaigning against an opponent, with its primary assertion, as stated, becomes all the more important as a tool for evaluating and understanding human society. The statement with which we began is absolutely true; as such, it has been taken to heart by every human predator since we began interacting in a societal manner. Since every interaction, in the eyes of some, is an act of war, they will use every part of their imagination to deceive whomever they perceive as any kind of threat to their own self-importance.

Over the course of history, what is the most persistent theme? Empire. Conquest. War. The victors write the history books, and the world continues to suffer at the hands of humans with no sense of humanity, who are willing to use whatever it takes to achieve their own ends, which almost always includes the power to control others, regardless of the inhumanity or unethical/immoral results that may occur to those innocents. In their blind lust for power and self-importance, is hidden their true motivation, fear of life as it exists in reality.

The same fear our distant forebears felt when lightning struck close by, or, an earthquake struck, or, a vicious storm flooded the land; fear of reality, which leads to anger, which leads to hatred, which leads to darkness and death. Because we now have the technological means and knowledge to understand these phenomena does not prevent our apish nervous systems from reacting to fear of the unknown; this is our fatal flaw, for only by accepting fear can it be overcome. Only by accepting our ignorance can we learn to face the world without flinching, freeing us to live without the necessity of always being on guard against disaster and pain.

But, we don’t, mostly. The entire species forgets it exists on a bell curve, and not all will see, or understand the world as others may. This has led to confusion, and, ultimately, will lead our species onto paths where there is only one destination, where we join all the other failed experiments of the evolution of the universe into whatever it may become. I have a feeling, very strong, supported unfortunately by reason and evidence, we will NOT be conquering the galaxy, as so many would believe we shall…. Our own nature is our worst enemy, and that is a war we cannot win, without learning to view the universe in a completely different way than we now perceive it. Trying to fight a war with reality seems, to me, a pursuit without any real purpose, or chance of winning. Reality makes the rules….. and, one of the most basic of rules is, unless we all win, everybody loses.

Rather than beat this horse any more, we’ll finish off with a few pearls, to sort of drive the points home, as it were…. I only wish one, or more of them, gave us some clear indication of what direction we need to take, with a truly viable chance of working…. Oh, well, all we can do, is all we can do….

“Money talks, but it is not obliged to tell the truth.” — MBA Bee

“…this would be the best of all possible worlds, if there were no religion in it.” — John Adams, Letter to Thomas Jefferson, 1816

“Do not be afraid of enemies; the worst they can do is to kill you. Do not be afraid of friends; the worst they can do is betray you. Be afraid of the indifferent;  they do not kill or betray. Yet only because of their silent agreement, betrayal and murder exist on earth.” — Bruno Yasienski, contemporary Soviet novelist

“Veni, vidi, vici” [I came, I saw, I conquered]. — Gaius Julius Caesar (100-44 B.C.) (See? How long before Caesar’s time was the Trojan War? Our history is rife with it…)

“If people get a kick out of running down pedestrians, you have to let them do it.” — Paul Jacobs, marketing director for a video game company

“The Book says BURN and DESTROY repent and redeem and revenge and deploy and rumble thee forth to the land of the unbelieving scum ’cause they don’t go for what’s in the Book and that makes ’em BAD.” — Frank Zappa

“25 states allow anyone to buy a gun, strap it on, and walk down the street with no permit of any kind: some say it’s crazy.  However, 4 out of 5 US murders are committed in the other half of the country:  so who is crazy?” — Andrew Ford

I’d say we are all getting pretty crazy, wouldn’t you?….

********************************

Comedy_Tragedy

Life is much improved
when I can be a cat tree
for an hour, or so.

~~ gigoid ~~

***********

Elemental, dear Watson….

Don’t worry,
it’s not
me
you hear
screaming.

It is
only
my bones,
giving in,
to
cowardly,
pathologically,
repetitive,
fucking,’
complaints
of
past abuse,
and
all the fun
we had.
playing,
hard.

I don’t mind
too much;
I can spend my
TIME
in another space
in my head,
pretending
my bones
don’t
exist….

It
is,
indeed,
a shame
they
always
come
back….

Fuck.

It
hurts.

More proof,
I guess,
either
God isn’t,
or,
He  is.

IF

He isn’t?
Oh,
Well….

Ante up.
Deal.

IF

He is?
Then,
I don’t fucking care
who
doesn’t like it,

I say,

He
is
a bully,
a coward,
a hypocrite,
and,
truly,
an enormous asshole.

I suppose,
God
 is
what comes,
to,
and
from,
People,

because

 they
feel
a need,
for
someone
to
blame,
for
a
Universe
they
cannot
understand
or
accept.

I
will
take the complaints.

After all,
they
are
my bones.

~~ gigoid ~~

9/14/2014


“I have thought many times since that if poets when they get discouraged would blow their brains out, they could write very much better when they got well.” — Mark Twain

********************************

pearls_3

    Today, we’ll finish up with my version of being silly….. A classic seven-star pearl, with no other meaning than to observe and enjoy the irony in life, of which there is no lack….

“Foolery, sir, does walk about the orb like the sun; it shines everywhere.” — William Shakespeare, Twelfth Night — Act iii, Sc. 1

“Universe, n.:  The problem.” — Andy Tannenbaum

“I think my new thing will be to try to be a real happy guy. I’ll just walk  around being real happy until some jerk says something stupid to me.” — Deep Thoughts by Jack Handey

“How are we to know whether we actually exist or only think we exist?” — Curious Bee

“The grass is always greener over the septic tank.” — Erma Bombeck

“Sometimes I lie awake at night, and I ask, Where have I gone wrong? Then a voice says to me, This is going to take more than one night.” — Charlie Brown, _Peanuts_ [Charles Schulz]

“Sometimes, Number One, you just have to…bow to the absurd.” — Picard, “Up the Long Ladder”, stardate 42823.2

********************************

I’m glad I have learned to trust the process; this gets done more efficiently when I do. Not that the quality is in any way improved thereby, but, hey, we’re tryin’, right? Right. It’s close enough for me. It’s also done for today, so, without further machinations, contortions, or excessive verbiage (beyond the already copious quantities furnished), I’m outta here. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes. I’m committed. Or, should that be, I should be committed? Ah, well, let me know later, okay?…. Ta, then…..

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

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

Which is Why….

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

gigoid, the dubious

The *only* duly authorized Computer Curmudgeon.

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

Dozer


À bientôt, mon cherí….


					

Use a little filigree for the nose….

Ffolkes,

A monk said to Joshu, “Your stone bridge is widely renowned, but coming here I find only a heap of rocks.”

 Joshu said, “You see only the stones and not the bridge.”

 The monk said, “What is the bridge?”

 Joshu said, “What do you think we are walking on?”

~~ Smart Bee ~~

“Zensense: The Wisdom of Joshu”

DSCN0027

    Today’s picture, which seems to go so well with the entry from the Wisdom of Joshu, is, truthfully, one of my own, taken on a train trip in 2013, when I visited a friend in Oregon…. I took the picture though the train window, while crammed into my tiny little cubicle, laughingly referred to as a luxury compartment by the thieves who run the trains…. I know, the bitterness kind of takes away from the peace and tranquility implied in the photo…. Still, it came out rather well, don’t you think? I do, but, then, I do have some investment to say so….

All that aside. I like the koan from Smart Bee’s stash of the sayings of Joshu; the title, “Zensense, The Wisdom of Joshu” is my own fictional contribution, which I made up because I thought it was an appropriate word…. I may have coined the word ‘Zensense’, but, I’m not sure, and I’m not going to claim it without knowing for sure; it’s pretty neat, all in all, in more ways than one, a good word to describe the category of ideas we get from Zen koans, or other examples of Zen Buddhist philosophy…. and, it should make it much more convenient to talk about the category, just as if it were lumped into one of the concomitant categories, like Nonsense, or Common sense, etc…. Bonus!

Now I’ve established that, for what it was worth, (I’d guess about $2.95, retail, with a drop to $2.00 on EBay….), we can, legally, go on to our regularly scheduled nonsense. What do we have on tap for today? Your guess is, naturally, as good as mine; this process is fully randomized. I have little to no idea of where we’ll end up, until shortly after I begin writing.

Even then, it’s always a hit and miss issue, as to whether we end up anywhere worthwhile. I try to make it, at minimum, interesting, or funny, but, as with any human endeavor, I frequently fall short, often, spectacularly enough to make me question why I do this at all…. Fortunately, I also possess the quite human ability to deny reality at the drop of a cliche, so, it all works out in end…. or, somewhere near the end….

On that note, with visions of endings cluttering our viewscreen, I think we should probably get on with the business for which we came today…. Once I get the memo telling me what that might be, we’ll get right on it. In the meantime, I think we’ll take advantage of that little hole in the barrier I see just ahead, and dive into the unknown, unguessed future that awaits us in the pearl beds…. See, that one right over…. wait for it….. THERE! Dive, dive, dive…..

Shall we Pearl?

AGE, n.  That period of life in which we compound for the vices that we still cherish by reviling those that we have no longer the enterprise to commit. — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

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

All the recent rants you’ve seen here on ECR in the last few days have been generally involved with calling out the lies our Beloved Ruling Class tells us on a daily basis. I try to be fairly light in my treatment, always including what I would term a joke of two, usually at the expense of one of the more vulnerable pundits, such as one of the Shrubs, or Tony Blair, or Dickless Cheney; you know, the assholes. Any who, I figured today, I would shoot for even more comedy, by going with the man who always did it best…. Here is someone’s compilation of his funniest work, all pointed in one direction…. Enjoy, ffolkes, George tells jokes, but, every damn one of them rings with the full volume of TRUTH….


The Best of George Carlin: Exposing our government and fall of humanity one joke at a time

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

“Everything that deceives may be said to enchant.”

~~ Plato, The Republic ~~

The Anti-trafficking Movement Needs Survivor Voices:  Why Are We Ignored?

    Today, I plan to avoid any undue unkindness in my writing. Therefore, I’ve decided for today to NOT compose a fresh rant, as I am, oddly enough, not dubious about how it would turn out. Without going into too much, or, for that matter, any detail, allow me to say I’d either be arrested, or at minimum, receive my first hate mail, a fate I have somehow managed to avoid, in spite of publishing my email address for the entire web to find… I consider that to be merely a chance happenstance; it’s less depressing than to think I’ve never offended anyone… It’s also better than assuming nobody who isn’t already in the choir ever comes by to read what is here….

When I’m being truthful with myself, I admit to the probability of the latter being the correct case. But, right now, I’m lying to myself, and pretending it’s nice of me not to subject y’all to any of what is currently running through my head…. I am of the firm opinion, for the first time, better in than out….

That doesn’t mean I can’t at least make an indictment, if only by using the Metaphorse, that powerful tool of literary nature which saves us closet activists from complete obscurity…. Here, then, is an old-school pearl with a series of comments on our beloved ruling class, and the sham of a government we have inherited, thanks to the inattention of the general public, and the inhumanity of the oligarchs…. Enjoy!

“de-moc-ra-cy (di mok’ ra see) n.  Three wolves and a sheep voting on what’s for dinner.” — Smart Bee

“There is but one element of government, and that is THE PEOPLE.  From this element spring all governments.  “For a nation to be free, it is only necessary that she wills it.”  For a nation to be slave, it is only necessary that she wills it.” — John Adams (1735-1826), Letter to John Taylor, 1814

“We lie about the truth, that’s what ruins us here. And do you know why we lie about the truth? Not because we like to, but because we are scared to death of it. If we looked the truth in the eye nine out of ten of us would run to the graveyard and demand to be buried at once.” — Babbaluche the cobbler

“Don’t ever tell anyone they ain’t free, ‘cos they’re gonna get real busy  killin’ and maimin’ just to prove they are.” — Terry Southern (script for Easy Rider)

“If you attack Stupidity you attack an entrenched interest with friends in government and every walk of public life.” — Robertson Davies

“If liberty and equality, as is thought by some, are chiefly to be found in democracy, they will be best attained when all persons alike share in the government to the utmost.” — Aristotle

“I hope in the future Americans are thought of as a warlike, vicious people, because I bet a lot of high schools would pick “Americans” as their mascot.” — Deep Thoughts by Jack Handey

“During his 1956 presidential campaign, a woman called out to Adlai E. Stevenson “Senator, you have the vote of every thinking person!” Stevenson called back “That’s not enough, madam, we need a majority!” — Smart Bee

Oops! Did you see that? It seems one of the pearls included is NOT part of the indictment, but, rather, an expression of how it all got the way it did, in a fashion…. Can you guess which one of them gives us a clue to both the cause of our current state, and the way to correct it? I can, but, then, I did write it…. Feel free to leave your answer in the comments…. or not…. I’m betting most of y’all will ignore this part, and rush on to the poem…. but, I’m a cynic, so, what do I know?….

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

Here is one of mine, from a couple of years ago, written soon after breaking my long hiatus; it’s a few thoughts and impressions about, as we call it around here, LAL, or,  Life At Large….

Choosing a Theme

Powerful words playing hide and seek in my mind,
teasing with subtle cruelty, pretending to be kind.
Grand visions and flowery verses of beauty and truth
evaded my inner eye all through the days of my youth.

Affable interludes interspersed with allegorical wit
softened the crimes, against all reason, to finally acquit.
Time became at once an enemy, and an ally
Never once compelled to provide an answer why.

Giving gifts of simple kindness are their own pay,
spreading ripples of compassion are felt far and away.
Love given freely is precious, we are ever told,
increasing love received, more than a hundred fold.

Living long and with passion has centered my soul,
allowing me room, and time, to choose my own goal.
Now that I’ve gone past any need to pretend
I love everything in life, even knowing it will end.

~~ gigoid ~~
10/21/2012


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

This pearl, for reasons unknown to modern science, or, for that matter, to me, is damn near perfect! Go figure….. Enjoy!….

Like leaves on trees the race of man is found,–
Now green in youth, now withering on the ground;
Another race the following spring supplies:
They fall successive, and successive rise.

~~ Alexander Pope ~~

~~ The Iliad of Homer, Book vi, Line 181 ~~


“As for life, it is a battle and a sojourning in a strange land; but the fame that comes after is oblivion.” — Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (121-180 AD) — Meditations, ii, 17

“Let us be thankful for the fools; but for them the rest of us could not succeed.” — Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens) (1835-1910)

“Life is full of little surprises” — Pandora

“After I’m dead I’d rather have people ask why I have no monument than   why I have one.” — Cato the Elder (234-149 B.C.)

“In handling a stinging insect, move very slowly.” — Lazurus Long

“In his private heart no man much respects himself.” — Mark Twain

“Remember that man’s life lies all within this present, as ‘t were but a hair’s-breadth of time; as for the rest, the past is gone, the future yet unseen. Short, therefore, is man’s life, and narrow is the corner of the earth wherein he dwells.” — Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (121-180 AD) — Meditations, iii, 10

Oh, sons of earth! attempt ye still to rise,
By mountains pil’d on mountains to the skies?
Heaven still with laughter the vain toil surveys,
And buries madmen in the heaps they raise.

~~ Alexander Pope ~~


See? All in the wrist….

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

Today’s Pearl is brought to you by…. the wonders of modern technology. Obviously. Since I don’t have any piece of whatever advertising you may see here, none of that part of it concerns us. All we know is what I write, which isn’t either predictable, or kosher, (hell, it’s barely classifiable at all….), though we do make it without any of the proscribed ingredients…. Well, okay, we don’t put any faith in there, but, all the rest of it is part of the recipe. We leave faith to those who require the panacea of its embrace…. Me, I’ll take my reason, and doubt, any day….

Which statement brings us, fortunately, to our closing for the day…. I hope you enjoyed today’s nonsense and angst; if not, well, just remember what you paid for it….. See y’all tomorrow, 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

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

Kowabunga!


À bientôt, mon cherí….


					

Use the flaming carrot; they don’t wobble as much…

Ffolkes,

“There is nothing permanent except change.”

~~ Heraclitus (540?-480? B.C.) ~~

zack in flight
Happy Boy


The picture you see doesn’t need attribution, as it is one of mine. The happy face you see is my first grandchild, now, one of soon-to-be FOUR grandchildren, though only two by blood…. If that is a bit cryptic, chalk it up to the flexibility of the modern family structure, then forget it as immaterial to our purpose…. What is that purpose? Oh, fret not, ’tis naught to worry you, and it won’t cost a tuppence….(Nice, eh? a touch of Victorianism for y’all…. kind of like croissant instead of white toast, right?) You might even say, today’s purpose is one of mercy, but, that might be carrying our altruistic impulses too far, or, giving them too much credit, where little credit is due….

Ah, yes, I love being inscrutable first thing in the morning…. almost as good as the smell of cordite in the air…. For those unfamiliar with chemistry, or warfare, or the streets, cordite is the smell of gunpowder, after it’s been used, usually to fire a weapon of some kind…. Not to worry, I never carry while escorting, or when writing these missives…. ‘Tisn’t necessary, what with the mines, and the number of stashed knives, spears, and other quiet-type weapons laying about the area, most of them hidden in plain sight…. Like a book, a knife is a pleasant thing to have nearby….

What? Me? Paranoid? Not at all…. I’m a realist, a warrior of the Light, and a student of war for my entire life. Having grown up on Army bases, primarily, until the age of ten, the concepts of Duty, tactics, strategy, discipline, and The Rules were all drummed into me from  birth. (The Rules of a Gentleman, of course….) Keeping track of potential enemies is part of life, for me, and for anyone with a realistic concern about surviving, and living well; it doesn’t do one’s stress levels any good to be ignorant of potential threats…. So, my habit of keeping myself well-armed, if not obviously so, is a rational response to the danger that exists EVERY FUCKING WHERE in the world, ESPECIALLY in a country where the government cannot be trusted….

SIGH…. I’m not only NOT going to rant already, I’ll give you fair warning…. The rant today, in section three, turned out to be one of the longest pearls every written, and certainly the longest rant I’ve ever produced…. Headlines and new CRAP kept popping up in front of me as I searched the news, along with some perfect accompanying material, including pearls…. they all kept insisting on being included, as it all, basically, is one subject, viewed from different points…. It grew, unfortunately, beyond all reason, and would now comprise a decent essay, or a monograph on a subject of interest, to post somewhere else online….

Instead, I’m going to get this one on the road to completion, by using my new-found, newly favorite ruthlessness to take us down the page to where we need to begin…. Hold on, ffolkes, it could get a bit bumpy….

Shall we Pearl?….

“The question was once put to him, how we ought to behave to our friends; and the answer he gave was, “As we should wish our friends to behave to us.” — Diogenes Laertius (c. 200 AD) — Aristotle, xi

Gee, sound familiar?…..

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

This particular batch of classical music starts out with, and contains, a bit more opera than I like, but, it’s still pretty good, and makes an excellent background for reading of these Pearls…. or, anything else, for that matter. Enjoy, ffolkes….

The Best of Classical Music in 8.5 Hours

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

“Ignorance is the opiate of the poor, a cordial, administered by the gracious hand of providence.” — Soame Jenyns, “A Free Enquiry into the Nature and Origin of Evil”

http://andromeda.rutgers.edu/~jlynch/Texts/jenyns-selection.html

The above link leads to an analysis of this quote by Samuel Johnson, a contemporary of Mr. Jenyns, wherein he lays out his thoughts on the concepts discussed in the article quoted above, by Mr. Jenyns; for the most part, Mr. Johnson does not agree with him, and, in certain respects, he is correct in his assessment…. However, he is NOT incorrect in his observation of the effect of ignorance on the poor; he is, strongly, incorrect as to its source, and the degree of divine compassion that is indicated by such ignorance…. In short, he is right, in that ignorance is, and continues to be, a large part of the oppression that creates a class of poor; he is completely wrong in thinking, and even more so in saying, that such ignorance is in any way a beneficial state….

I would make a guess, based on experience and observation, that Mr. Jenyns was a preacher, or cleric of some order, if merely an academic (possibly the most dangerous kind, as they tend to be very far removed from reality, as exists for the majority of mankind, thus making them innocents, in terms of insight into human nature, since their knowledge is limited to what they read of that nature, and not observations of it’s behavior out in the real world….). It is clear in the statement that he gives far too much credence to the delusional system followed by the majority of people, thus insulating him from ever realizing any truths that will stand up to the real world….

For example, the attitude he expresses can be shown to lead to the kind of ignorance that encourages misogyny, bigotry, racism, and narcissism, the actual four horses of the Apocalypse (not horsemen…. I figure, if it’s Apocalypse, the horses would be running rogue, destroying and creating chaos on their own…. no direction wanted, or required…. makes perfect sense to me, as much as any such superstitious nonsense can….). The appearance of all four of these qualities in society is a sure indicator of the impending demise of that un-civilization…. (as pointed out to me recently, we really don’t HAVE a civilization; there is nothing ‘civil’ about it….)

We see it in the paranoia displayed by those who are ostensibly elected to protect us, but, who spend their time spying on us, lying to us, and ignoring anything that might make changes beneficial to all. They spend their time, instead, filling their pockets, and satisfying the needs and wants of their financial backers, otherwise known as bankers, snakeheads, corporate masters, lobbyists, and other such parasitic entities who make it possible for them to complete their agenda, which has NOTHING to do with what is good for the common man, or for society, but, rather benefits them, and those who support them….

Need proof I’m not talking through my ass? Here, read this, then tell me the NSA, GCHQ, CIA, FBI, and all the other government spy agencies aren’t completely out of control…. I dare anyone to do so….

http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/oct/29/gchq-nsa-data-surveillance?CMP=EMCNEWEML6619I2

“The group also said information obtained through these overseas “arrangements” was treated as if it were targeted surveillance, removing a requirement under UK law not to search for UK citizens and residents in such data troves. This means that British citizens could, in theory, be subject to warrantless monitoring by GCHQ.”

“The line the Government took at the hearing was that there were adequate safeguards, they just couldn’t be made public,” he said. “Leaving aside whether secret safeguards can ever be adequate, this reluctantly-made disclosure suggests otherwise.”

Excerpted from the article found at the link above these four lines….

Need a bit more proof? Here is an article from the UK Guardian on a subject reported in all the major news outlets (though with less depth, and more speculation in the others….), about the sheer stupidity/cupidity of public officials in this country, turning a medical issue into a panic, due to their own ignorance, and that of the public, which they foster and encourage….

Want some more scary proof? Well, maybe you don’t want it, but, it’s out there, so, here…. read this…. If this doesn’t tickle your outrage bone. then you don’t have any passion at all, and have already accepted your slavery….

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/oct/29/fbi-hacking-press-internet-users

Excerpts from the article:

“The Seattle Times and Associated Press issued angry statements to the FBI on Tuesday after the American Civil Liberties Union’s Chris Soghoian discovered that the FBI had falsified an AP story and byline, and then possibly attempted to make it look like the fake story was published on the Seattle Times website – all to deliver malware to a suspect in a criminal case. The evidence was buried in documents obtained by EFF (pages 61-62) under the Freedom of Information Act three years ago (and the emails date back even further)….”

“Though there are still a lot of questions that FBI seems unwilling to answer. Because the documents were heavily redacted, it’s tough to tell how the whole plan worked: we still don’t know how the FBI delivered the link (through a fake reporter or mySpace friend), to which website the link went, how many people besides the suspect clicked on it, or whether there even more impersonation going on beyond what we see in the email. And most importantly: how often do they normally impersonate news organizations and falsify articles?”

“Since at least 2007, the FBI has had what it calls a “Secure Technologies Exploitation Group” – which is a more polite way of saying they have a team that hacks computers.”

“They’ve been using the same language with judges, at least one of whom has recently rejected the FBI hacking request, given the invasiveness of what they were actually doing. The judge described the FBI’s malware tool in that particular case like this:

“Once installed, the software has the capacity to search the computer’s hard drive, random access memory, and other storage media; to activate the computer’s built-in camera; to generate latitude and longitude coordinates for the computer’s location; and to transmit the extracted data to FBI agents within the district.”

Still not convinced just how sick this society is?? Or, how the people who are supposed to be in charge are complete assholes, almost to a man?…. Check this article….

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/oct/29/maine-nurse-defiant-maine-ebola-quarantine

From the article:

“People infected with the Ebola virus may not show symptoms for up to 21 days, spurring the calls by politicians for a three-week isolation period. However, people with the disease are not infectious until they are symptomatic, typically after developing a fever. Even then, those infected can only spread Ebola through body fluids, such as blood or vomit. The disease is not airborne. ”

“The day before Hickox was detained in Newark airport, a New York City doctor, Craig Spencer, was diagnosed with Ebola. The doctor took at least three trips on the subway, dined out and went bowling, spurring public anxiety.”

“Do you understand what that did to the psyche of public officials in a metropolis of nine million people,” the Today show host Matt Lauer asked Hickox.”

“Of course I do understand, it has created a lot of fear, but we still have to make policies based on evidence,” Hickox said.”

If I have to point out to you how wrong all of this is, then, I am afraid you need to practice your thinking skills, or, perhaps, you need go find the thinking cap you put in the attic, years ago…. It’s crystal clear to me that the political forces in this country have blown the Ebola virus issue completely out of proportion, aided and abetted by the media, which thinks only of how fantastic claims of impending doom sells more papers, than does a reasoned approach to any issue. Pay attention, ffolkes…. Everything you need to know about the ridiculousness of the political buffoons’ reactions can be found in the above excerpt, which describes the medical status of the disease…. IT ISN’T ANY FUCKING MORE DANGEROUS THAN THE FLU THAT PASSES THROUGH US EVERY DAMN YEAR….

Sorry for shouting, but, damn it, listen to me….

Every year, you will note, without fail, no matter how many cases are seen, or not seen, of the flu strains they tout as so dangerous, the medical/pharmaceutical industry wants everyone to get a flu shot (Only $4.95/dose at K-Mart, or Walgreen’s, or even if free…. Somebody is being charged by the pharmco’s for this “service” to the public, paid by the insurance money they rip us off for….). Every year, we see the same advertising, and the same push to “Get Your Flu Shots!”…..

This happens, even though NOT taking the shot, and letting the body learn how to fight the disease on its own, provides a person with relative immunity for the rest of their life….If such a person ever does contract the disease again, in any strain, it will affect them much less…. This is a medical FACT, ffolkes, it is how our bodies fight off diseases, by learning how to combat them with its own defenses….

If you had the flu as a child, and lived through it, chances are you’ll never have another serious case of in your life…. a fact of which I am proof… I KNOW I am not alone, as well, because all of my brothers and sisters are the same…. We all had the flu, back in the 40’s and 50’s, and haven’t had it since…. Sure, the flu, if untreated, can be dangerous…. for adults, or for kids, too, if not cared for…..

The treatment to prevent the chances of dying from the flu, in these modern times, are very effective, and have been in place since the advent of the knowledge of how to treat ANY illness got to be society wide…. Very few people die from the flu any more, compared to the number of people there are in toto, and if children who catch it are treated for it, the number is even smaller….

But, by catching the disease, the body learns to create the proper defenses, ON ITS OWN, and those defenses work very well in preventing future occurrences in those who have had the disease…. As well, the percentage of those people who might catch it again is even smaller, because their body aids in the defense, and treatment milieu necessary to support it in its battle.

But, to treat it that way costs money the corporations that control health care don’t like to spend…. They don’t want something like that known widely, or they wouldn’t be able to convince anyone of the danger, thereby losing, literally, BILLIONS AND BILLIONS OF DOLLARS every year, from having to treat kids with the flu, and from not getting all those adults to buy the shots they’re trying to sell…. They simply aren’t going to let that happen, are they?…. Not when they can use the government, and the media, and the ignorance of the average person to manipulate them into being afraid of nothing much at all….

There is plenty more proof, should anyone need it…

Indeed, misogyny, and outright fear of women, among most men in this world, is a key problem in our world, an all-too common fact of life, caused by the attitudes related above, to wit: ignorance, encouraged by society itself….This cowardly weakness is manifested in our daily lives very much more than anyone wishes to admit…. From what I read, and from what I’ve seen in my 64 years, I can truthfully say I estimate 99% of all men alive today are, at least to some degree, misogynists… They are afraid of women’s sexuality, and how they feel it threatens their masculinity, which they do not understand at all, connecting it to their physical size advantage, rather than to their intelligence, or understanding…

The problem arises from the unfortunate fact that men have a tendency, when they fear, to resort to violence, or, if threatened by a woman (in their minds), by sexual misconduct (a fancy way of saying rape, or sexual harassment of all types….)…. If you think I’m overstating the situation, or the issue, take a moment to read the following article, and watch the video….

Both provide graphic proof of my contention, and there is little I can add to make it any stronger than it is…. So, check it out, please…. This is an issue that is important to ALL men, and ALL women…. seriously…. Then, think about the simple fact that this video was performed in only ONE place…. a large one, to be sure…. but, is this any different than what you see on the streets of your own city? I don’t think so….

http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2014/oct/29/woman-records-10-hours-of-harassment-walking-through-new-york

Ten Hours of Walking Through Sexual Harassment; NYC

“A Lie is still a Lie, even if you believe it.”

~~ Smart Bee ~~


This may possibly be the longest rant ever in a Pearl, or, for that matter, the longest I’ve ever written, period….. Stuff just kept popping up in front of me as I read the news yesterday, things that demanded a response, because the theme for today covers ALL of the issues we face in society today….. Believe me, they are legion, and very few people will tell you the straight truth about even little parts of the big picture…. and nobody WANTS to talk about how scary the WHOLE picture is beginning to be….

It scares me, and not just a little bit, either…. The only solutions I see are only going to happen if the entire species acts as one organism, and, so far, we haven’t done too well at that…. not that I’ve noticed…. Add to that the fact of human nature that we all know to be true, i.e., change is the hardest thing to do for us, and, well…. Let’s just say, as delicately as we can, things aren’t looking terribly promising for us having much of a future…. We are the victims of our own nature….

I can think of only one creature on the face of this planet who will miss our sorry asses when we are gone, and, they already love us more than we could possibly deserve, or love ourselves…. Dogs, I think, will wonder where we’ve gone, but, if we are all that was gone, I think things would get along fine, and none of the other creatures would be concerned at all…. not considering how we have treated them….

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

“They made light of it.” — New Testament — Matthew xxii, 5

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

After ranting so much, for so long, I need the kind of reality to be found in all of this man’s poetry….

40,000

at the track today,
Father’s Day,
each paid admission was
entitled to a wallet
and each contained a
little surprise.
most of the men seemed
between 30 and 55,
going to fat,
many of them in walking
shorts,
they had gone stale in
life,
flattened out….
in fact, damn it, they
aren’t even worth writing
about!
why am I doing
this?
these don’t even
deserve a death bed,
these little walking
whales,
only there are so
many of
them,
in the urinals,
in the food lines,
they have managed to
survive
in a most limited
sense
but when you see
so many of them
like that,
there and not there,
breathing, farting,
commenting,
waiting for a thunder
that will not arrive,
waiting for the charging
white horse of
Glory,
waiting for the lovely
female that is not
there,
waiting to WIN,
waiting for the great
dream to
engulf them
but they do nothing,
they clomp in their
sandals,
gnaw at hot dogs
dog style,
gulping at the
meat,
they complain about
losing,
blame the jocks,
drink green
beer,
the parking lot is
jammed with their
unpaid for
cars,
the jocks mount
again for another
race,
the men press
toward the betting
windows
mesmerized,
fathers and non-fathers
Monday is waiting
for them,
this is the last
big lark.
and the horses are
totally
beautiful.
it is shocking how
beautiful they
are
at that time,
at that place,
their life shines
through;
miracles happen,
even in
hell.
I decide to stay for
one more
race.
     
~~ Charles Bukowski ~~


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

Well, even software can have an urge, I guess; all seven of these pearls were picked out by Smart Bee, though only two were original to him/her/them/it/…. That urge seems to have something to do with a sharp stick, and the eyes of a politician…. Well, they deserve all the shit we can throw at them, since that’s all they throw at us, so…. enjoy….

“Is it fair to hold politicians to the same standards as humans?” –Smart Bee

“Nothing, indeed, but the possession of some power can with any certainty discover what at the bottom is the true character of any man.” — Edmund Burke

“Nothing can so alienate a voter from the political system as backing a winning candidate.” — Mark B. Cohen

“I support drug testing. I believe every public official should be given a shot of sodium pentathol and asked “Which laws have you broken this week?”– Smart Bee, (again with gigoid’s full agreement… damn good idea.)

“I have discovered the art of deceiving diplomats. I speak the truth, and they never believe me.” — Conte Camillo Benso di Cavour

“Abuse of words has been the great instrument of sophistry and chicanery, of party, faction, and division of society.” — John Adams (1735-1826)

“Either CONFESS now or we go to “PEOPLE’S COURT”!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

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

Whew! That’s a long one, ffolkes. Even though much of it was done yesterday, I still had to proof, edit, and format the whole thing, so, at this juncture, I’m just happy I got it done…. In fact, I’m going to go with the flow, and take us out of here, now, so we can all get on with what promises to be a good day…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes…..

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

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

Which is Why….

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

gigoid, the dubious

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

Kowabunga!


À bientôt, mon cherí….

 

Saved by tea and biscuits….

Ffolkes,

Reality is an interesting concept. It has some rather compelling qualities that make it attractive, not the least of which is its insistence, as Philip K. Dick observed, on not going away, even when you stop believing in it. Sadly, or perhaps it is inevitably, due to the duality of said reality, it also has many qualities that are less than perfectly attractive, or desirable as a regular experience. In fact, if I had to spend ALL of my time there, I think I’d just shoot myself, and be done with it…..

I suppose, because of it’s dual nature, reality thus could be described as what is called, in legal terms, an attractive nuisance, like having a swimming pool in your back yard…. Our problem is that reality is in everyone’s back yard, and the nuisance factor is not only thus made universal, but, for some unknown reason, multiplied by a factor of at least ten….

Or, it that just me? Am I the only one who has such problems with reality? I shouldn’t think so; I consider myself to be fairly competent at dealing with life. I have, after all, made it this far without any major fuck-ups or jail time. Maybe y’all could tell me if you have the same sort of trouble getting reality to act right?….

Regardless of the answer, it must be dealt with, and therein lies the heart of the matter. None of us, especially those of us with any experience at it, really LIKE to deal with reality; the greatest number of us arrange life so we don’t have to confront it too often…. If you believe that to be untrue, I suggest you take a look at the most recent spate of TV “reality” shows, or consider the fact that, although I’ve been hearing about these Kardashian people for several years now, as so-called “celebrities”, and I still haven’t a clue as to what hole they crawled out of, or why they are said to be such…

Before, oh, say, four years ago, I’d never heard the name Kardashian at all, except as part of a late night commercial, as some rug store by that name kept going out of business and had their rude commercials all over the late night TV screen…. You know the ones, that offer 70% discounts, and overuse the phrase “everything must go!” by a large margin…. Up until their names began showing up in the media, I’d never heard of a Kim, or a Khloe, or any of the others who are now considered part of the glitterati…

Ah well, complaining about reality is a fool’s game, anyway, and the public’s idea of fame is pretty fickle. I suppose, as long as I don’t let reality dictate my emotional state, I’m ahead of the game…. by a long way, it would seem, as the general run of society seems to have trouble getting reality to act in any fashion that suits them…. which is also, in my estimation, pretty normal, as I’ve noted all my life that most folks are oblivious to much of what goes on around them, and haven’t a clue as to the true nature of what they perceive…. It does keep most of them occupied and out of my hair, but, it doesn’t do much toward making things more equitable for everyone, which is, as I see it, our main difficulty as a society….

But, I’m guessing I’m NOT normal, and that’s just fine with me…. In fact, I wouldn’t have it any other way….

Shall we Pearl?….

“Finality is death. Perfection is finality. Nothing is perfect. There are lumps in it.” — James Stephens

I like that; “there are lumps in it.” Now THAT is a fine way to see reality, IMNSHO….

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

“Who is ever secure? Every one of us searches for security. We seek it from our family, from our friends, from our pets, from strangers and from “God.” Once in a while we experience it, only to discover that it was merely an illusion. And yet we never learn that security is an impossibility. For we are only human beings.” — Chen-It Ong

http://www.rollingstone.com/culture/news/one-slender-man-attacker-deemed-mentally-incompetent-20140702

http://www.rollingstone.com/culture/news/meet-slender-man-the-online-phantom-that-inspired-attempted-murder-20140604

Have you been following this story? About the two girls who stabbed another, in perhaps our society’s most telling incident of the century, thus far…. I can’t think of a crime that more perfectly describes what is wrong with our society than this one…. I’m not going to rant about it, any more than this short diatribe; I will however ask this question, which is derived from a fact of media reporting that also indicates where many of our issues begin, to wit: In all of this, no mention is made of any of the parents of any of the 3 girls involved….

My question is “Where the FUCK were the parents of these children when all of this was going on?”…. That’s all…. just think about the answer, whatever it may be, and you will see whereof I speak, when I say we are all going down the tubes to extinction, without a fucking clue that we are even on that path…. But, as noted, I won’t rant any more than this…. Instead, we’ll look for some pearls to provide the pokes to the underbelly of society…. or, whatever portion of that belly I can reach….

“Weakness of attitude becomes weakness of character.” — Albert Einstein

“Why this is Hell, nor am I out of it.” — Christopher Marlowe (1564-1593)

“It seems these two Airmen decided to rob the local 7-11, a stupid move in and of itself.  But wait, its stupid to rob a store when you’re in the military ’cause the haircut will give you away every time.  But wait again, its even stupider to do it in UNIFORM with you NAME emblazoned in 1 inch letters on the front.  But wait yet again, its even stupider to tie up the clerk and try and ring up customers purchases from behind the register while in uniform outside an Air Force base.  Especially when your first customer is a Chief Master Sgt. — Smart Bee

“Don’t overestimate the decency of the human race.” — H.L. Mencken

“His ignorance is encyclopedic.” — Abba Eban

(Hmm…. I wonder… to which President do you think Abba was referring?…..)

“I’m continually AMAZED at th’ breathtaking effects of WIND EROSION!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

(Me, too…. especially if you consider this a metaphorical reference to the effects of TV on the human psyche…..)

“That’s the secret to life… replace one worry with another…. — Charlie Brown (by Charles Schulz)

(Yep…. cartoonists always have their finger on the pulse of society….)

Enough, before I get so worked up, I go LOOK for someone to bite….

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

Today, you’re getting one of mine out of sheer laziness; I’m too much so this morning to even go look for one by someone else. That would require at least three of four clicks before I could even start to copy and paste, which is more than I’m willing to go through right now…. Yep, that’s pretty lazy, and I don’t care…. Hmm… the subject matter in section one today seems to have been a choice for discussion some time back. I was apparently thinking about it, anyway, as I found this poem of mine, that speaks pretty directly to that theme…. I hope you enjoy it; as I recall, this one took about three and a half pints of blood replacement after penning it….

Intelligent Crimes

The value of wit is often said to cause harm,
for those who think, such is its greatest charm.
The new and the bold cannot be fulfilled
if innovation and change is left unwilled.

Society behaves at its base as a mob
conformity and submission its primary job.
Any sign of rebellion against the mob’s rule
is met with resentment, naming such rebel the fool.

Intellect and talent are looked at askance,
expressing artistry stands nary a chance.
To stand out from the rest of mankind
is fraught with danger, for body and mind.

Often I stand to watch in solemn dismay
as beauty and joy are left by the way,
ignored and reviled by the unwashed masses
who prefer darkness, and acting like asses.

With shouts of derision the normals make known
their fear of intelligence, greater than their own.
They hope to stop all semblance of progress;
for thoughts and ideas, they couldn’t care less.

The world struggles on in spite of all opposition,
managing to maintain its advanced position.
Pulling the foolish along in spite of reluctance,
helping each to learn the survival dance.

Hard though it may be to keep up with the future
genius manages its plans to develop and nurture.
In the final analysis, those who live by reason
enjoy life the most, season to season.

~~ gigoid ~~


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

As noted previously, at points scattered throughout today’s Pearl (both evidential and direct announcements….), I’m lazy today, which has also made me late getting this done…. These pearls, and therefore this pearl, were gathered while multitasking, looking for the above parameter-bound group. These just jumped up & told me, unequivocally, they were to be used in section three, and would be just fine as a random harlequin batch…. They were right, but, I’d planned to put in pictures here today…. So, you get a bonus…. a weird bonus, but, a bonus….

Above each quote, you’ll see a picture… The pictures are either mine, or taken from the London Daily Telegraph…. If you wish complete attribution, you’ll have to go to their site to get it, as I forgot to note which page of their issue it came from…. All of the pictures are examples, in my view, of extreme beauty, of the sort only Nature can produce, beginning on Earth, and proceeding outward, toward the far galaxies…. but, they DON’T have any connection, that I know of or planned, with the quotes below each one…. Maybe next time….

July 2 2014 009“Whenever anybody says he’s struggling to become a human being I have to laugh because the apes beat him to it by about a million years. Struggle to become a parrot or something.” — Jack Handey, “Deep Thoughts”
July 2 2014 006“Of all mankind, each loves himself the best.” — Terence
painted desert“This is a revolution, damn it!  We’re going to have to offend SOMEbody!” — John Adams (1735-1826), 1776
A-Giant_s-Star-Tra_2960526k“Let life happen to you. Believe me: life is in the right, always.” — Rainer Maria Rilke
Centre-of-the-Hear_2960533k“Character is that which reveals moral purpose, exposing the class of things a man chooses or avoids.” — Aristotle
Creature--_-Ole-Ch_2960535k“What is wanted is not the will to believe, but the will to find out,  which is the exact opposite.” — Bertrand Russell (1872-1967), “Sceptical Essays”, 1928
NGC-6888_2960564k“In America everybody is of the opinion that he has no social superiors, since all men are equal, but he does not admit that he has no social inferiors, for, from the time of Jefferson onward, the doctrine that all men are equal applies only upwards, not downwards.” — Bertrand Russell

There you go…. so be it, such as it is….

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

It’s done, which, today, is all I really was shooting for….. and, since it is, I’ll even be nice, and leave it at that…. You’ve been a wonderful audience, so, each of you may choose from a variety of prizes by the door, in the ugly green box, as a bonus for your attention today…. Me, I’m outta here…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes….

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

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

Which is Why….


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

gigoid the dubious

Featured Image -- 2780

Based, as always, on arbitrary parameters….

Ffolkes,

I know it’s going to be a long day when taking a nap tires me out….. Yesterday was one of those days, and though I’m not precisely bursting with energy, today does NOT feel the same…. thankfully. Though, being one who doesn’t buy into the whole pie-in-the-sky routine, I’m not sure what that means…. It’s not as if I believe there is actually some bearded, white-haired old Caucasian dude sitting up there in the sky, on a gilded throne (tacky….), waiting for me to acknowledge his divinity with worship, who, I am told, will display a tantrum of childish pique if I don’t do so…. At least, that hasn’t happened thus far, so, I’m not going to hold my breath over it….

I will, however, remark that it makes it hard to feel productive when one gets up, as I did yesterday, after dozing off for a good two hours, only to feel like the only possible, logical choice is a return trip to go another few rounds with the pillow. It also makes it a bit sticky the next morning, (that’s today, ffolkes…. let’s keep up….), as I  try to salvage some of yesterday by speaking of it today…. I know it takes the chance of having the entire group get lost in time, as I tend to mix my time zones when writing, which often leads to losing track of which one I’m currently inhabiting…..

Life can be tough when one wishes to pursue the quest to create the perfect Pearl; it’s not the simple, stress-free activity it appears from the outside, let me tell you…. It CAN be fraught with all sorts of danger, and/or vicious beasts, all angry at being provoked…. those preachers and pundits get a bit testy when crossed, or, worse for them, exposed for their lies and chicanery….

However, I’m not a coward, and I’ve been at this for some time now; it’s merely the morning’s ambiance that has me nervous; it feels like Murphy is lurking, and I hate it when he holds off his surprises for later…. They’re always so much more complex, and, thus, harder to spot, when he takes the time to make them that way, the butthead…. I would try to fool him into thinking I’m not ready for them, so he lets whatever it is out of its cage early, but, I’m not sure I’ve got the chutzpah today…. Hell, I can barely keep my eyes open again, so, maybe today will be more like yesterday than I’d thought…. Hmm, how can I turn that to my advantage?….

I know, I’ll trick Murphy into thinking he’s already tricked me today; if I go back to bed, he’ll get all confused about the time, and think he’s losing it…. I don’t get the chance to fool with him like this very often, so, hey, we’re going for it…. I’ll come back later, ffolkes, to finish this intro, and bask in having bested that blasted asshole, who spends so much of his time fucking with me, or with my friends….. Plus, maybe if I sleep a bit more, I’ll come up with some sort of direction for this Pearl, which, thus far, is completely lost…. Brave, and unafraid, but lost….

I’ll be back….

I’m back… I think. Enough so that I know my tricking of Murphy worked, well enough, it seems, to have dodged whatever nasty bullet he had  planned for today…. and, in celebration of a successful display of cowardice, we’ll close off this intro (you hadn’t noticed that, had you?….), and get on with the rest of today’s mess, such as it may be….. Method #4 should work nicely, I think….

Shall we Pearl?….

“Human life nearly resembles iron. When you use it, it wears out. When you don’t, rust consumes it.” — Marcus Porcius Cato (234-149 BC) — Carmen de moribus

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

As noted, today has displayed a high probability of being slated for strangeness; to be frank, which is difficult, as I’m Ned, not frank…. but, if I were, I’d say we’ve already reached that stage…. I know I have, and if that’s true, it would be even more difficult to avoid having the strangeness bleed into this pearl…. Since we’re being frank, I have to say it’s too late….

To salvage what otherwise might turn on us, I’m putting in a headline here, one with some pretty good information….. Read this, if you would, please… then, we’ll talk…. That is, if I can think of anything worth saying about it…. Most all bets are off at this point, as to whether or not we can pull this off…. Myself, I think we can, though it may cost a couple of broken bones…. no big deal, as long as they’re MY bones, right?…. Okay, I’ll stop now, & let you read this….

http://blog.sfgate.com/hottopics/2014/06/23/recap-heres-30-recent-studies-on-the-effects-of-marijuana/#24367101=0

Excellent summary of recent research, almost all positive re: the effects of long-term use of cannabis and/or cannabinoids in general. I’m encouraged, both by the positive nature of all of what is brought out here, but, also by the recent court decisions right here in California, making the process of legalizing medical cannabis that much more of a done deal…. Soon, between the latest advances in the LGBT arena, and this one, American culture might just start to look as if the people were ready to enter the 21st century, along with the rest of the world….

Of course, that is partially an illusion; there are still a LOT of people in this country with what I like to call the dead-brain syndrome, characterized by bigotry, racism, misogyny, and a general refusal to use more than one neuron at a time…. They all go to a Christian church, wear blue suits with red ties and a flag pin, and spend most of their time in the modern world either closing their eyes, or their ears, so they don’t have to see or hear anything that offends their sensibilities…. Murricans, I call them, in close resemblance to their butchering of the country’s name…. These are people who cannot speak their own language without making it sound ignorant….

Sorry, got off into a minor pocket of outrage…. Stupidity is rampant in this country, and it offends me constantly…. Worse than even this stupidity is the even more prevalent attitude of deliberate ignorance, which has to be a choice…. a choice that infuriates me. When I see one of these fat, racist bigots talking on TV, spewing their ignorant hatred over all they see, it makes my fingers itch, for a bow, or a gun, or some other way to put an end to the idiocy of their existence…. It’s a bit harsh, but, there is no other cure for deliberate ignorance…. As I’ve noted in the past, stupidity can’t be helped, and has a certain charm; deliberate ignorance is ugly, and deserves any harsh treatment it engenders from me, or anyone else with any honor in their veins…

I see that I’ve managed to spew now for quite a while, without ever settling in to one theme, other than a very general poking at white Christian bigoted misogynists… of which there are millions of unpleasant examples to witness, in this country alone…. and they breed like fricking rabbits! Oh well, what the hell, it makes for more targets, eh?….. I am not sure exactly how we got into all this, as we started this section relatively positively…. Somewhere along the line, it turned on me…. which is okay, as it got all that built-up vitriol out of my head, where it has obviously been festering for some time…. Better out than in, eh?….

I think what I’ll do now is drop y’all like a stone, off the edge of the precipice upon which we just poised ourselves…. but, we’ll pad the landing area with a group of pearls, which will close off this section with some dignity, or, if nothing else, a bit of pointed humor…. Well, we can hope, can’t we?…. I think a five-star pearl will do nicely….

“Among the rich you will never find a really generous man even by accident. They may give their money away, but they will never give themselves away; they are egotistic, secretive, dry as old bones. To be smart enough to get all that money you must be dull enough to want it.” — G. K. Chesterton, A Miscellany of Men

“Fear is the main source of superstition, and one of the main sources of cruelty. To conquer fear is the beginning of wisdom, in the pursuit of truth as in the endeavour after a worthy manner of life.  — Bertrand Russell, “An Outline of Intellectual Rubbish”

“Intelligence has nothing to do with politics.” — Londo Molari

“…this would be the best of all possible worlds, if there were no”religion in it.” — John Adams, Letter to Thomas Jefferson, 1816

“When asked what learning was the most necessary, he said, “Not to unlearn what you have learned.” — Diogenes Laertius (c. 200 AD) — Antisthenes, iv

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Here is one of mine that I haven’t reprinted in a while; it’s not bad, IMHO….

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 ~~

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I’ve been cruising my archives again, and keep finding rants or discussions worth reprinting; this fits in perfectly with my lazy nature, as well as providing me with material I know is already proofed….. It’s not much, but, it helps….. Plus, I’m finding that much of what I wrote in this period has a certain sharp edge I have trouble matching these days…. I was, at the time, living a much less comfortable life, and it shows in what I wrote during that period…. For now, it fills my need for something to finish this Pearl with panache, or, the closest I come to it…. Enjoy!…..

From 5/7/2012:

I don’t have an attitude problem–it’s supposed to be like this. — Smart Bee

I like this. It’s what I’ve said in response to any number of folks who have challenged me regarding my intransigence in the face of ignorant behavior. I am always tempted to add, “I am an American citizen, and it is not only my right, but my duty to challenge authority,”  mainly because I believe it to be absolutely true, thought not an attitude currently favored by most of society, more’s the pity…. We’d be a lot better off if more folks took their duties as citizens more seriously….

“I do not believe in the creed professed by the Jewish church, by the Roman church, by the Greek church, by the Turkish church, by the Protestant church, nor by any church that I know of. My own mind is my own church.” — Thomas Paine

All of our founding fathers were convinced that only an educated populace had a chance of maintaining the freedoms they secured for us. They knew firsthand how unscrupulous churches and governments, working hand in hand, had oppressed and subjugated the people for centuries, and they were determined that it should NOT happen here. So they engineered a system whereby each citizen has the opportunity, and the right, to a complete grounding in basic knowledge, in order that they could make informed decisions regarding the laws with which they would be living….

“The Church hates a thinker like a criminal hates the police.” — Smart Bee (So do politicians…)

For over 200 years now, the beloved ruling class and their hidden supporters, the prelates of the churches, temples, mosques, and synagogues, have been repeatedly and subtly attempting to undermine the purpose behind educating people, trying to limit the amount spent on education, or luring people into believing the nonsensical alternatives that religion offers in lieu of independence of thought, thus minimizing the effects of the education received outside their influence. They (the politicians and priests/preachers….) continuously bombard the public with lie after lie, until the lies are accepted as truth, just because there is nothing else offered. They then use those lies to further confuse the public as to what is really happening, and go about their business of stealing and grabbing power wherever they find the opportunity….

“I’m completely in favor of the separation of Church and State.   My idea  is that these two institutions screw us up enough on their own, so both of them together is certain death.” — George Carlin

So, my attitude is not the problem…. the problem is that not enough of us have this attitude, and the PTB have virtually no competition in their fight for our attention; there is nobody allowed on the political stage who is singing a different song than the one approved for public consumption by those who control such matters…. Hell, we’ll know we’re making progress if even one such person ever gets the chance to even speak…. In the meantime, all we can do is to have those of us who know our duty keep plugging away, calling them out for their lies, and making as much noise as we can, to try to draw some attention to those places where it isn’t appreciated, but is needed the most…..

“Every sensible man, every honest man, must hold the Christian sect in horror. But what shall we substitute in its place? you say. What? A ferocious animal has sucked the blood of my relatives. I tell you to rid yourselves of this beast and you ask me what you shall put in its place?” — Voltaire

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This one kind of got away from me a little…. That’s what happens when I have too much energy; it comes into conflict with my bone-deep, inherent laziness, and we end up with an epic pearl, which will surely drive the easily intimidated elsewhere…. So be it…. It’s way too late to go back & do it over, and, besides, I like it…. such as it is…. It will do, and that is the essential ingredient…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes….

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

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

Which is Why….


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

gigoid the dubious

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In the final analysis, partial hydrogenation was a key factor….

Ffolkes,

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

I used this tagline yesterday, as an apology, sort of…. In retrospect, I’m thinking this may just be something I could have tattooed on my forehead, as it seems to be one of the most common phrases I use, in a figurative sense…. This entire blog demands that I express some sort of explanatory excuse quite frequently, just by the nature of my chosen subject matter, and my chosen manner of discussion…. Well, in my world, it demands an explanation, anyway; just because other folks don’t live by what my daddy taught me gives me NO reason to do so. In fact, a big part of what he taught me is the concept of Duty, which precludes any sort of shirking, or abrogation of responsibility for our words and actions…..

In conjunction with that thought, came another…. It had to do with something else my father said to me one time, a piece of wisdom that, as it does at one point or another in every father’s life, occurred to him, and prompted him to share with me; I have since shared it with my own children, as part and parcel with the other important lessons I felt they should be taught, as I was…. He said to me, in so many words, “I have taught you all that you know; I have not taught you everything I know.” He smiled as he said it, to take some of the pain from its delivery, but, he couldn’t hide the truth of it, which often causes pain to those who insist on having it, straight up with no ice….

That being said, I have, at least in one respect, tried to do a bit more for my own children, as I am aware of my own failures as a father (we all have them…. we just try not to dwell on them….), and can’t hope to emulate the example he set, in some respects…. But, I have left a legacy for my two kids my father never had time to create, if he so desired…. and that is this blog, along with all the years of Pearls of Virtual Wisdom I created before 2011…. a history that goes back to 1997, when I was first in computer school, and chose my user name, gigoid…. The first Pearls came out, via email, a year or so later, when I got my first computer & Internet hook-up, slow as it was….

The rest, of course, is history, sans any editing by the winners/losers of any societal issues that may determine whose version lasts any length of time…. In the past three years alone, in putting out the Pearls for this version of the Follies, I’ve written well over two million words, all in my own inimitable, irritable style…. These words, and those yet to come, are what I leave my children as my legacy…. With these words, I am trying to transmit to them all the things I’ve never had the time to relate to them, thus giving the lie to that old saw about not teaching all I know….

It may not be the most lucrative legacy ever left, but, it’s what I’ve got, and it ain’t bad…. To further the process, I’d say I’ve wandered around this idea long enough for one day, and now decree it is time to get on with today’s business…. I’ve been working on this one for a while now, as the idea for the first section today struck me solidly in the forehead about two days ago, and I’ve been trying to find periods of time without major spasming to work on it….. my walk around the pirate conclave on Sunday was a bit more draining than I had first imagined…. I’ll live, but, it’s been a bit of a struggle to keep wanting to do so….

Ah, the hell with it; if I don’t get on with it, it’s going to explode, or dissolve in its own tears…. Shall we Pearl?….

“Language is the apparel in which your thoughts parade before the public. Never clothe them in vulgar or shoddy attire.” — George Crane

Oops! Now what?…. Oh well, we’ll just go on, as if we hadn’t seen this at all….

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Welcome, gentle readers, to another episode of the Life and Times of the Wise Old Pine Cone…. Like me, you’ve probably heard stories all your life, telling happy tales with magical, happy endings, filled with anecdotes and descriptions of the Old Cone, and how his wisdom and understanding of The Way, and the Force, as well as the Metaphorse, helps him, and all who hear of him….

I know, I didn’t expect to find him here, in this somewhat bedraggled excuse for a city, either, but, I was waiting for a bus one day, and, there he was, just hanging out, waiting to catch the same bus…. We got to talking, and one thing led to another…. He came home with me, to continue our conversation, and further explore how he could help me, and I could help him, to leave a record of his words, and actions, for generations to follow…. Of course, I was humbled, and honored, agreeing at once…. We tried a couple of forays out into the BRC last week, and now are heading out for another walk, just to stretch a bit after the Pirate Festival I attended, and ended up walking A LOT more than is normal….

First, here is the Wise Old Pine Cone himself…. basking in the morning sun, looking forward to the day….. For all I know, he was meditating, as well, on some esoteric point of philosophy beyond my comprehension…. or not…. He looks content, though, doesn’t he?….

June 16 2014 002    As we walked, we came across some of his friends from the tree, a married couple, the Burleycones, (I know, they’re HUGE, aren’t they? The WOPC tells me they’re examples of a certain strain of cones, who are all much larger than the rest of them…. kind of like a whole sub-species of giant sized cones….), who apparently had something very serious to discuss with him, to which I was not privy…. All I know is the Old Cone was a bit withdrawn for a while, kind of thoughtful…. Here he is talking with the two towering Cones….

June 16 2014 003    You can see from the Wise Old Pine Cone’s expression, he’s got a lot on his mind…. He sat on this bench, staring at a small congress of crows, for over a half-hour before we set off for home….

June 16 2014 005    When we got back to the house, I found out we’d been followed…. by a young pine cone I’d never seen before…. It seems the Burleycones have a son, and the Wise Old Pine Cone agreed, after much inner turmoil, to take the youngster on as his new paduan learner cone…. It’s a big job, for both of them, from what I know of the tradition…. As well, knowing what I do about the Wise Old One, it promises to be a very long, arduous, involved, and challenging time for the young cone…. He looks pretty sturdy, though, and seems to have an intelligent look about him…. We’ll see how he fares, at the Art of learning the Way…..

June 16 2014 010    Here we see the Wise Old Pine Cone giving the Paduan his first reading assignment…. It’s a book written by a blogging friend of mine, Jeremiah Stephen, titled, “Sphere(s)” (as you see below….)….. Jeremiah’s blog, where you can find a link to purchase the book, (I did, and consider it well under-priced for the value of its work, and the worth of its contents, which is virtually incalculable….), is located here….  http://knowthesphere.wordpress.com/

Having read portions of it, (thus far; I’ve only had it a couple of weeks, and Jeremiah’s work is DEEP…..), I know that the young learner has his work cut out for him; it’s a challenging book, excellently written, full of solidly based, well-thought-out, and eloquently presented points of philosophy, all using a metaphor connected to spheres, which allows him to display his deep insight into reality…. He does all this in a fresh, innovative style of writing that engages the reader without becoming overwhelming….. Heavy praise, I know, but, which doesn’t even mention the accuracy and sheer, instinctive  rightness of the conclusions he presents, as the logical, and meta-logical, results of his arguments. It will be interesting to see what our young paduan makes of it….

June 16 2014 012    Here we see the young pine cone meeting Guan Yin, the Chinese goddess, aka the Empress of Heaven…. The Wise Old Pine Cone, in his wisdom, knows there are many things the young paduan can learn from her, things only she can teach him…. If you don’t know what they are, you don’t want to know, or it would do you more harm than good, thus negating the purpose of sharing the knowledge…. Trust me, the WOPC knows what he is doing, and so does Guan Yin….

June 16 2014 027Below you see the paduan meeting another of his teachers…. The Wise Old Pine Cone, having learned long ago to not try to do it all himself, assigns much of his paduan’s learning to other teachers, to provide more than just one point of view of the same material…. and, since Buddhism is an inherent part of what he teaches, why not go directly to the source to obtain the needed instruction?….  Wise, indeed….

June 16 2014 017In the picture below, we see the young paduan learner being introduced to a peer, one of the students of the Buddha…. Scrappy-Doo found out about the school, and figured out he would benefit from the calming effect the teachings have…. You see, Scrappy has entered puberty, and would like to meet some girls…. but, his aggressiveness and scruffy manner puts them off. So, he’s trying a bunch of different things to improve his chances of meeting a girl…. which, when you think about it, isn’t stupid….

June 16 2014 021Here you see the two famous teachers relaxing with an adult beverage, (or, perhaps, two or three of them….. they’re adults, after all….)….

June 16 2014 023    The kids are tucked in bed, & Guan Yin doesn’t drink, so the two enlightened Ones have the place to themselves…. I hope they don’t go overboard, like they did last month…. The school had to shut down for three days until they recovered…. Oh well, we’re all bozos on this bus…. or, so I have come to understand…. which means that everyone, even the driver, gets more than just one chance…. After all, we are all bozos, right? Right….

I hope you enjoyed today’s little foray into silliness… I did…..

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

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Since we’re being silly today, here’s a poet who does silly better than most anybody…. Enjoy!….

A Boy Named Sue

Well, my daddy left home when I was three,
and he didn’t leave much to Ma and me,
just this old guitar and a bottle of booze.
Now I don’t blame him because he run and hid,
but the meanest thing that he ever did was
before he left he went and named me Sue.

Well, he must have thought it was quite a joke,
and it got lots of laughs from a lot of folks,
it seems I had to fight my whole life through.
Some gal would giggle and I’d get red
and some guy would laugh and I’d bust his head,
I tell you, life ain’t easy for a boy named Sue.

Well, I grew up quick and I grew up mean.
My fist got hard and my wits got keen.
Roamed from town to town to hide my shame,
but I made me a vow to the moon and the stars,
I’d search the honky tonks and bars and kill
that man that gave me that awful name.

But it was Gatlinburg in mid July and I had
just hit town and my throat was dry.
I’d thought i’d stop and have myself a brew.
At an old saloon in a street of mud
and at a table dealing stud sat the dirty,
mangy dog that named me Sue.

Well, I knew that snake was my own sweet dad
from a worn-out picture that my mother had
and I knew the scar on his cheek and his evil eye.
He was big and bent and gray and old
and I looked at him and my blood ran cold,
and I said, ‘My name is Sue. How do you do?
Now you’re gonna die.’ Yeah, that’s what I told him.

Well, I hit him right between the eyes and he went down
but to my surprise he came up with a knife
and cut off a piece of my ear. But I busted a chair
right across his teeth. And we crashed through
the wall and into the street kicking and a-gouging
in the mud and the blood and the beer.

I tell you I’ve fought tougher men but I really can’t remember when.
He kicked like a mule and bit like a crocodile.
I heard him laughin’ and then I heard him cussin’,
he went for his gun and I pulled mine first.
He stood there looking at me and I saw him smile.

And he said, ‘Son, this world is rough and if
a man’s gonna make it, he’s gotta be tough
and I knew I wouldn’t be there to help you along.
So I gave you that name and I said ‘Goodbye’.
I knew you’d have to get tough or die. And it’s
that name that helped to make you strong.’

Yeah, he said, ‘Now you have just fought one
helluva fight, and I know you hate me and you’ve
got the right to kill me now and I wouldn’t blame you
if you do. But you ought to thank me
before I die for the gravel in your guts and the spit
in your eye because I’m the guy that named you Sue.’
Yeah, what could I do? What could I do?

I got all choked up and I threw down my gun,
called him pa and he called me a son,
and I came away with a different point of view
and I think about him now and then.
Every time I tried, every time I win and if I
ever have a son I think I am gonna name him
Bill or George – anything but Sue.
     
~~ Sheldon Allan Silverstein ~~

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Well, it’s been a productive morning…. We’ll finish off today with, of course, an old-school pearl, just as if we had it all planned out that way….. which, of course, we didn’t…. but, serendipity is our friend around here….

“I spent hours trying to come up with the perfect tagline.  This isn’t it.” — Smart Bee

“After things have gone from bad to worse, the cycle will repeat itself.” — Farnsdick’s Corollary to the 5th Corollary

26. Read more books and watch less TV. — Instructions for life

O!  If I were a fish
I’d lay hap’ly on my dish.
Yes, that’s my one and only wish —
To be a fish!

For fish don’t ever mish;
They needn’t flush after they pish!
Yes, and life’s just swish, swish, swish,
For all the fish!!!

— found in Smart Bee with no attribution, other than the essential quality needed, to wit: it’s damn silly….

“Facts are stubborn little bastards, be careful with them.” — Smart Bee

“One useless man can be called a disgrace. Two really useless men can be called a law firm. When you get more than these together, you have all the  essential ingredients for a committee. And after the committee has made one or two criminal errors which are against the law, you have all that is deemed necessary for the formation of a congress. Our country has two separate bodies of these people, no one room being quite large enough to contain them all. And then there is the executive branch, but we shall discuss this later under the heading: “Extreme Absurdities You Would Not  Believe!””– parts attributed to John Adams (though I suspect the last sentence or two were added sometime after the new millennium began….)

“Hold fast to dreams for if dreams die, life is a broken winged bird that cannot fly.” — Langston Hughes, Dreams

“Therefore, be ye lamps unto yourselves, be a refuge to yourselves. Hold fast to Truth as a lamp; hold fast to the truth as a refuge. Look not for a refuge in anyone beside yourselves. And those, who shall be a lamp unto themselves, shall betake themselves to no external refuge, but holding fast to the Truth as their lamp, and holding fast to the Truth as their refuge, they shall reach the topmost height.” — Buddha

“In dealing with the State, we ought to remember that its institutions are not aboriginal, though they existed before we were born: that they are not superior to the citizen: that every one of them was once the act of a single man: every law and usage was a man’s expedient to meet a particular case: that they all are imitable, all alterable; we may make as good; we may make better.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson (1802-1882)

This is an unusual pearl, ffolkes, but, that fits right in with today’s essential theme…. This one went from silly to sublime, in nine (mostly) short steps…. I hope you enjoyed it….

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Ffolkes, I just don’t see how I can do this any better than this…. and, if so, I’m not sure I want to…. The best part is, I get to try again tomorrow… Well, that’s the best part for me…. y’all have to take your chances, as we all do when surfing…. I’ll make it worth your while, though, you can be sure of that…. Until then, stay silly, ffolkes, it’s a good excuse….

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

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

Which is Why….

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

gigoid the dubious

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Sifting metadata for tidbits of information…. priceless….

Ffolkes,

Well, this is strange…. For the second day in a row, I slept well, for almost eight straight hours, and woke up feeling a feeling I had not felt in a very long time…. I felt good. No major pain to speak of, no major stiffness, just a normal drowsiness while throwing off the effects of sleep. Coffee’s already on, and I’m sitting here, as ready as I ever am, to dive into another Pearl…. Now all I need to do is find an intro somewhere in the vast, empty reaches of my mind….

For an opening paragraph, that one doesn’t suck…. It doesn’t really impress me all that much with brilliance, but, hey, not sucking is good, it’s okay, right? And, boy, do I sound pathetically codependent, or what? (If I hear ANYONE say “what”, I’ll cry, so, please refrain for the moment…. it’s a cheap laugh anyway….) I suppose I could have found a bit more compelling secondary opening line, but, to be honest, I thought the ‘doesn’t suck’ part to be pretty cool… I smiled when I wrote it, so irony or no irony, it stays, and y’all can go to hell…

Just kidding; if y’all took off for the nether regions, who’d read the Pearl? I’m just thrashing about in random turns, trying to land on a spot from which I can actually get a grip on this…. I’m not sure if it is going to happen, but, if I keep looking, at least I’ll have an excuse when the boss gets here…. Oh, wait, no boss…. Sorry, sometimes I forget I’m retired…. I sit here composing a Pearl, which I did each day for the last five years I worked, and I can slip backwards in time, & believe myself to be sitting in the E.D.’s office at NSH, putting the daily Pearl together, before anyone else arrives…. It’s weird, but comforting…

I know, I’m weird, too…. But, you see, that’s one of the selling points I use when I actually do make a sale on one of these….. Of course, nobody has ever bought one, but, I’ve been trying so long, and the fantasy of actually selling one has been dreamed so many times, it almost seems real…. SIGH…. Someday, somebody will pay me to do this, and my life will be complete….

Until then, though, it would probably be best if I stopped spouting sheer nonsense, just so I can fill up space in an introduction that, once again, has gone terribly wrong…. No organization, no logic, and almost no humor, though not without a large number of attempts…. sad, sad, sad….

Oh well, it DID get me this far down the page, so, I’m going to invoke the subsidiary emergency clause, and declare this a legal, if odd, introduction, and get on with the rest of today’s effort…. It will be for the best, I’m sure, since THIS can go nowhere interesting, or important…. not from here, anyway…. Maybe from over there….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“Think hard now!  Which one is Shinola?” — Smart Bee, tongue firmly in cheek….

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I don’t about y’all, but, I about busted a gut, and literally almost fell out of my chair laughing when I saw the pearl above, that closes the intro…. I haven’t heard that expression in damn near thirty years, and it was so perfectly apt as a closing pearl for that section, it made it even funnier…. Whew! My tummy is all stiff and trembling, from the almost four minutes of hard laughter…. It may be hard to start to rant now, but, I think the following links should bring me right back into that mode…. Please read these, so you will catch any references in the comments I’ve included….

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/may/22/nsa-reform-bill-usa-freedom-act-passes-house?CMP=ema_565

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/may/22/pentagon-report-snowden-leaks-national-security?CMP=ema_565

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/may/22/pentagon-report-snowden-grave-threat-overblown?CMP=ema_565

Okay, so we have two separate issues here… actually three, and it is the third I wish to rant on the worst…. We’ll take them one at a time….

First, as to the so-called “reform” bill passed in the House, it seems to be merely a sop to the public, more than any real reform. It doesn’t make any real changes to the way the NSA collects data; it makes only superficial changes to how the data is handled once stolen, er, collected…. And, none of it addressed the real issue, of how illegal, and immoral it is to spy on one’s own citizens…. The entire subject is one that irks me like a burr under a saddle irks a horse; it’s a constant irritation, all because the administration refuses to acknowledge the illegal nature of the process at all, and the public is allowing them to do that without any reaction… they’re just watching in resignation…

Second, we have two views of the same issue, to wit: the Snowden revelations, and the effect it has had on the American Unintelligence programs…. Sorry, just can’t use the word Intelligence to describe people who don’t show any…. Any who, these articles show, first, just how badly the government feels the need to lie, when the pentagon issues a whine, er, report, that doesn’t even address the actual effects of the information that Snowden took, but looks instead at what MIGHT happen, IF he took certain things, but, they don’t know for sure exactly WHAT he took, so it’s all a guess, anyway….

The third article is an opinion column, by a British columnist, explaining how the Pentagon report is, well, useless as a means of transmitting any actual information… It’s merely a long, detailed (with information that doesn’t apply to the issue) WHINE  by the idiots who want to keep all they do out of the public eye, and are upset because this American Hero, Eric Snowden, was brave enough to stand up to the entire US government to bring the truth to the public…. If he DOESN’T win this year’s Nobel Peace Prize, there is no justice in the world anymore…

Wow, almost forgot the third issue, which is this: I found these articles in a news outlet from the UK, (that’s Great Britain, to the geographically challenged). When I looked in the US news sites, I found ONE report, a video report by the Bloomberg network, a relatively new internet news outlet…. None of the US papers or outlets had anything on either of these two stories….

Now, why do you think that is? A lot of very disturbing reasons come to my mind, but, I’m a cynic… what do y’all think? I am certain, whatever the reason, it can’t be any good news for the American public, as any reason to NOT discuss it can only mean the spread of more ignorance among the unwashed masses of Americans, who already operate in an informational blackout, what with their ingrained preference for lies, delusions, and whatever nonsensical crap they are fed by anyone on TV with a nice smile, a blue suit, with a white shirt, a red tie, and a flag pin on their lapel….

I could rant on this for a very long time, but, good as I feel today, it’s not that simple, or easy… Plus, rather than take the chance of boring some of my less politically minded readers, I’ll switch this pearl in mid-stream, going old-school…. Here, then, is a five-star pearl, with parameters set to give us some pearlish comments on these issues, and the base issue, the corruption and fall of western civilization as we know it….

“I’m glad you asked me that. This gives me the perfect opportunity to talk about the problems with this Congress…” — Vice President Dan Quayle responding to reporter’s — questions about his use of Air force 2 to — go on golf trips at the cost of $26,000/hour

“When we see persons of worth, we should think of equaling them; when we see persons of a contrary character, we should turn inwards and examine ourselves.” — Confucius

“Following the Noble Path is like entering a dark room with a light in the hand; the darkness will all be cleared away, and the room will be filled with light.” — Buddha

“One lie does not cost you one truth, but the truth.” — Friedrich Hebbel

“If it weren’t for politicians, who would fashion disorder out of chaos?” — Smart Bee

I love it when a plot plan comes together….

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One more time, I’m using my own poetry, for the simplest of reasons, to wit: if I do, nobody else can get blamed for this…. Besides, it’s all of a kind, today, poking at those assholes in Washington D.C., who keep themselves busy trying to fulfill the paranoid delusions under which they suffer….

Terror at Constitution Hall

Standing quiet, waiting on hope’s bright wing,
a stranger heralds the gift of Time.
Lyrical, spherical melodies we sing,
yet with silence, as a mime.
If fortune favors the bold and free,
truth may be spoken with courage unveiled.
But fortune oft is capricious and cruel,
and truth is naught but cold, with freedom failed.
Humanity has rights, ’tis often said,
if courage and truth can prevail.
If fear and ignorance are the diet we’re fed,
Life without liberty will be the end to this tale.

~~ gigoid ~~

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Having used up both my rant and my old-school pearl in section one, I’m going into the archives again to fill in this last section…. It’s about time to go over one of our only remaining rights, to make sure everyone knows the importance of protecting it as long as we can…. I forget exactly how long ago I wrote this, but, no doubt, there is a clue somewhere in the text to locate us in time… If not, well, it’s as valid today as it was two or three years ago, when it first appeared…. Enjoy, ffolkes, and, please, remember to put on your thinking caps….

“Americans have the right and advantage of being armed – unlike the citizens of other countries whose governments are afraid to trust the people with arms.” — James Madison

I found this yesterday; I’d seen it before, and it seemed serendipitous that it showed up just in time for the event today (psst!…. go vote!….). (Aha! I told you…. so, this was written on election day in 2012….) In my mind, a good standard for figuring out if a person is a true patriot is to get their take on the Second Amendment, and the idea of gun control by the government. As I’ve stated before, I believe the risk of letting the government restrict our rights in this regard, IN ANY WAY, can only lead to the eventual loss of the right altogether, and that is an event that is completely unacceptable to me.

Yes, it means that the world will be a dangerous place, but, guess what, ffolkes? That is something that happened a long time before guns. Taking them away from the general populace is not going to stop mass killings, or unjust, insane use of guns against innocent people. That occurs on a daily basis, anyway, but with the guns in the hands of police officers; that is a fact…. So, don’t tell me that the government is more qualified to use guns than I am, because that is just stupid….

Now that I’ve insulted many of you, we’ll try to go on to the election…. didn’t mean to get off into a rant on that, but, wanted to get it out of the way, so that the discussion may go on to other ways that the government is, quite simply, fucking us left and right…. George Carlin had a lot of good points about the corporate masters and their lackeys, the beloved ruling classes, and the priestly hierarchies. He often pointed out that the world has turned into a massive corporate conglomerate, with all the world governments at the mercy of those few individuals who actually control all the resources, and money. Those are people you never hear about, or see in the news, unless it is by intent…. they don’t allow accidents like that to happen….. But rest assured, they exist, and are perfectly content to let the world believe whatever it wants, as long as their profits, their power, and their control over others continues to grow….

“The rifle and handgun are “equalizers” – the weapons of a democracy. Tanks and bombers represent dictatorship.” — Edward Abbey

But, the invisible rulers don’t like the Second Amendment…. it leaves too much chance for independence in the hands of the people, and in case the people ever find out what they have been up to, they want to be able to know where all the guns are that might threaten them…. Having the general populace of this country continue to have access to any significant firepower is not in their best interests, so they work behind the scenes to get people to believe the nonsense about gun control, and how keeping guns from the hands of the citizenry will make life safer…. which is just so much bullshit, plain and simple.  Ultimately, the only real effect of making guns illegal will be to make a large percentage of the American people outlaws, because I don’t think any of us will give them up without resistance, whether overt, or covert….

“The right to buy weapons is the right to be free.” — A. E. Van Vogt, The Weapon Shops, — in Astounding Science Fiction, December 1942

How, you may ask, does this relate to the election? Well, it doesn’t,  directly…. it’s just a pet peeve of mine, and an example of another of our basic rights that are being eroded by politicians, preachers, and those who ignorantly buy into their lies. I don’t trust the Democrats any more than I do the Republicans; perhaps even less, because the Republicans seem to be far more open about their lack of concern with the rights of the people. In that sense, they are easier to spot, and to resist. The Dems are being more subtle, but that doesn’t make them trustworthy; they do, after all, seek that power over others as well. There just seem to be more of them who are motivated to do so out of some community feeling, and concern for others, and those are trying to encompass reforms that are sorely needed.

“A politician thinks of the next election; a statesman, of the next generation.” — James Clarke

The difference between the two parties that have the only chance at the seats of power is extreme in this election; very seldom has the choice that needs to be made been clearer (even though it continues to be a choice between the lesser of two evils….). One can choose to move forward into a future with a chance for some change, or one can try to return society to the middle ages, with all of its injustice, and misery. It is that simple, and anyone who wishes to argue with that is welcome to present their views…. I’ll knock them down easily, with headlines from the daily news that, although not exactly unbiased or always true, are nonetheless balanced out by the outrageousness of each side’s contributions.

“Giving every man a vote has no more made men wise and free than Christianity has made them good.” — H.L. Mencken

The facts are all our there to see, and they clearly show one candidate whose only interest is in increasing his own power and wealth, and protecting his cronies on Wall Street, his cultish church, and the ruling class; he cares noting about the common man, and makes his disdain obvious. The other is, well, definitely the lesser of two evils…. on the apparent surface he is a dedicated, honest man, seeking reform and change, but, there are indications of less than stellar activity in his administration, too.

But, he obviously cares about the common man much more than his opponent, and since the common man is the one who will be affected the most by what happens this time, the choice is clear. If you don’t want to have to take up regular use of Vaseline and Preparation H, then vote the incumbent…. If you really want to get a good screwing in the nether regions, then vote the opposition…. it is that simple ffolkes….

“There is but one element of government, and that is THE PEOPLE.  From this element spring all governments.  “For a nation to be free, it is only necessary that she wills it.”  For a nation to be slave, it is only necessary that she wills it.” — John Adams (1735-1826), Letter to John Taylor, 1814

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Well, it’s long, it’s complicated, and it might make someone think about something other than their oatmeal…. I’ll take it. All those qualifications make for what I consider an excellent Pearl, no matter what anyone else may believe…. Deal….. (Just kidding…. there’s a bit of humor in all of this, in spots, so, it’s not ALL heavy and depressing…. only most of it….. Oh, well, tomorrow’s another day, and I’ll be here, to try again…. See ya, ffolkes, from just another ffoole on the hill….

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

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

Which is Why….


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

gigoid the dubious

Featured Image -- 2780

Precious moments of subtle grandeur…..

Ffolkes,

You probably can’t tell by looking, but, in this space, earlier today, three complete fictional beginnings to a story were composed, then edited to the point of deletion, each one being rather LESS acceptable than the one before…. I can’t recall ever coming up with so much CRAP so early in the day, unless of course, we count that time in Phoenix, of which, the binding documents of non-disclosure I signed then preclude any mention…. That’s okay by me, I wouldn’t want stuff like that to ever be associated with my name, if I can help it….

Unfortunately for TODAY’s Pearl, that leaves me here, too deep in to back out, but with not a damn thing to go here….. at least, nothing I’d allow past my inner censor. Hell, at this point, it’s all I can do to blink both eyes in unison; I’m that discombobulated this morning…. My eyes are giving me fits, trying to focus; my thumb aches like crazy, telling me it’s time to stop ignoring it, & go see the Doc about it…..

I just hate thinking of the probable treatment, a shot of cortisone…. it works great, but, I’m not real sanguine about using steroids, for anything, even the stuff for which it is commonly prescribed…. Just because we’ve used something for a while doesn’t mean they know what the long term effects are…. the medical profession has too many priors in that respect for me to ever trust them completely…. Remember the time they x-rayed some guy in the ER, & found he had a surgical tool, a pair of forceps, to be exact, still inside his abdomen, left there by a forgetful surgeon a few weeks previously?…. I do….

But, that’s all just avoiding the issue, which is the lack of stimulation/inspiration I’m experiencing today, that is keeping this intro in “Inanity Mode”, with long, wandering discussions of not very much, stretched, padded, and stuffed full of useless verbiage, all designed to take us just a little further down the page, until we find ourselves in an area where we can stop a moment, catch our breath, look around, and make the self-serving,  but appropriate decision to bring this section to a close, having reached a point where such a decision becomes practicable….

Why, look! We’ve reached just such a point now! How about that, ffolkes? I even fooled myself today, into thinking this might work…. which it did, I’ll point out…. Here we are, five full paragraphs in, and we’re ready to cut loose with whatever is to take place today…. It’s always a surprise to me, and should be for y’all, as well…. Hope springs eternal…. as does my chutzpah…. though, to be honest, it doesn’t really spring, so much as creep, but, hey, it SOUNDS good, right?

Shall we Pearl?…. I think it would be for the best if we did….

In lazy apathy let stoics boast
Their virtue fix’d: ‘t is fix’d as in a frost;
Contracted all, retiring to the breast;
But strength of mind is exercise, not rest.

— Alexander Pope (1688-1744) — Essay on Man, Epistle ii, Line 101

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I’m in a lot of pain this morning…. but, I also decided not to complain about it; instead we have the above nonsense, while here, in section one, I’ll go with an older rant, on a subject that never goes out of style…. not here, anyway….

From 9/19/2012, I offer the following pearl, for your viewing enjoyment:

A while back, I wrote a comment regarding another a post on another blog, concerning the proposal made in that blog of writing some new amendments to the Constitution. Most of the suggested amendments made good sense, as they would remove many of the entitlements that Congress has awarded itself over the years. However, there was one suggested change with which I wholeheartedly disagree…. This is the response to that suggestion… The address of the original blog is included, in case you want to read it first…..  To wit:

In Response to a Proposed 35th Amendment

From the blog site at:

http://lennemi.wordpress.com/2012/04/05/a-proposal-for-a-new-bill-of-rights/#comment-234

After reading the above blog, I posted the following comment:

Sir, or madam,

Excellent post, well reasoned and presented…. I have a few comments, if I may….

It has long been a delusion in human society that morality can be enforced, or induced at all, by legislation. This is an idea, as proven time and time again throughout thousands of years of human history, that is doomed to fail, every time it is attempted. That is not speculation, or guesswork. Look it up…..

Therefore, it is my suggestion that you forget #35, in favor of the Second Amendment already in place in the Bill of Rights; this concept is based on a false assumption, and making a flat statement of what (YOU believe) my rights are, or should be, is not acceptable to me as a citizen of this republic, or as a human being responsible for my own actions. Bearing arms is not a privilege, nor will I, and most likely at least 150 million, or more, other people in this country, accept that idea for a moment, a fact that should be obvious to any one with practical understanding of reality.

I do not, nor will I ever believe that Federal, State, or Local jurisdiction have either the right, or the authority to say differently, and I doubt seriously that there are very many in this country who do believe that. I reject utterly the statement that they, or you, or anyone else, has the right to decide for me what I will or will not own, or keep, or use in my defense. After guns, free speech would be the next to go….any bets?

That, my friend, is a fact of life, and of human nature. We only have those rights we can defend…. and this is merely another doomed attempt to legislate morality into human nature. Violence exists. Period. Get used to it, because you are not going to remove it from people’s core nature, or from reality, any more than attempting to remove guns will stop crime, or killing, or the tendency toward violence that is part of the nature of Man. Better to understand the impulse, and work toward educating people in how to cope with that part of themselves constructively, rather than destructively…..

The rest of your amendments are perfectly in alignment with what I believe is needed to improve the conditions of inequality and elitism so prevalent in today’s society, and would receive my full support.

To be honest, up to recently, I never owned, or saw a need to own a gun. As one who has followed the Warrior’s Path since my early teens (and probably before; I was raised on army posts from birth to age 10), and a long-time student of martial arts, and the theories of war, I learned how to deal with violence in many ways, with many techniques, a large number of which I had to apply in my work for years, physically controlling out-of-control psychotic mental patients, without hurting them, or getting hurt.

I got pretty  good at dealing with violent people, especially in recognizing such outbursts before they manifested fully, and diverting it as needed.  I am very familiar with violence, in a great many of its guises. That said, it seems clear that I have generally been able to deal with whatever physical violence may occur in my immediate vicinity.

Now, however, I’m not as fast as I once was, nor as well-conditioned; I’m better at foresight, it comes with age. And I can foresee a time when I could conceivably need the equalizing factor of a weapon like a gun, in order to live up to my standard of handling events without injury, as far as I can…..so, I’m probably going to buy one or two…

Because of that, and even more, because of insane (sorry, don’t mean to flame; but, it isn’t fully sane to attempt to change human nature) talk such as this, of watching society willingly slip on their slave collars…This is NOT going to happen in my world…. or, at least, not in the little piece of it I can control….

If anyone, or anyone’s brother, or anyone else, tries to take away the Second Amendment rights I now have, well, I can only say, good luck with that….. and bring lots of well-armed, battle-tested friends…you’ll need them….

Oh, and I’d keep in mind…. those folks, like the police in Sanford, Florida, who were complicit in covering up the murder there,  aren’t going to disarm themselves, now are they?…. How far will you trust them to behave with honor, and respect for YOUR rights? Get real…..and I don’t mean that disrespectfully, but in hope that you will open your eyes to what is plainly there to see….

Note from 2014:

“Those who really deserve praise are the people who, while human enough to enjoy power, nevertheless pay more attention to justice than they are compelled to do by their situation.” — Thucydides

Now, if only there were ANYONE left in our society who fit this description, we might be able to hold on to some hope…..

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Since I’m using archived material today, I’m going with this older poem of mine, which seems to fit in with the tone, if not the exact same tune we are singing today….

Rhyming is better than lying….

It’s all too, too much, he cried
   I can take no more!
It’s all crazy, my brain is fried,
   battered, bloody, and sore.

Talking heads shout out hatred and fear
   jam for my morning toast.
Pointing fingers far, middle, and near
   enemies everywhere, almost.

Women, gays, and seniors fall prey,
   easy targets, slow and weak.
Convenient fools, wanting only to play,
   used, and abused, even as we speak.

It enough to drive me floridly insane,
   or want to buy a gun.
I may end up in jail, or in massive pain,
   but, oh, it would be fun….

~~ gigoid ~~

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I don’t know how, but, I seem to have tweaked my lower back in my sleep last night; it’s giving me fits this morning…. But, I think I’ve got enough in me to finish this off, as long as I go old-school here in section three…. which I shall proceed to do…. Enjoy! This is all the fresh stuff you’ll get today….

“How much pain have cost us the evils which have never happened.” — Thomas Jefferson, “Writings” Vol. XVI

“No amount of ability is of the slightest avail without honor.” — Andrew Carnegie

“Everywhere the human soul stands between a hemisphere of light and another of darkness; on the confines of two everlasting hostile empires, Necessity and Freewill.” — Carlyle (1795-1881)

“Authority has every reason to fear the skeptic, for authority can rarely survive in the face of doubt.” — Robert Lindner

“Abuse of words has been the great instrument of sophistry and chicanery, of party, faction, and division of society.” — John Adams (1735-1826)

“There is no easy way from the earth to the stars.” — Seneca

“For him who has conquered the mind, the mind is the best of friends; but for one who has failed to do so, his mind will be the greatest enemy.” — Bhagavad Gita (c. B.C. 400)

I love it when a plan comes together…..

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Today’s Pearl has been brought to you by the word “stubborn”, and the number 13, which has always been my favorite of all the prime numbers…. and, no, I don’t know what that means about me, nor do I care….. This is done, and for now, that’s all I do care about, as I’m about to go obliviate my consciousness with large quantities of drugs…. See y’all tomorrow, one way or another….

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

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

Which is Why….


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

gigoid the dubious

dozer3