Popcorn delivery on Tuesday only….

Ffolkes,

“One touch of nature…makes all the world kin.”

~~ John Muir, American Naturalist ~~

Ireland 076

Symmetry on the Galway Estuary


Hajime…. For reasons which shall remain mysterious, today’s intro will set a new record for brevity. To do so, I’ll need to dump y’all off at the oyster beds rather abruptly; it can’t be helped. To keep to the plan, this is all you get…. I know, a pain, but, needs must, Mr. Windigate, so, we’re outta here….

Shall we Pearl?….

“If it is not right do not do it; if it is not true do not say it.”

~~ Marcus Aurelius ~~


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watch-star-trek-renegades-now-available-free-online-750x480

Star Trek: Renegades

Image from startreknews.net via Google Images


When the internet became ubiquitous, an internet version of Star Trek began to show up online, in movies an episodes made by various fans. This movie is one of those released last year some time, and lives up to all its history…. Enjoy!…. Oh, and, there are more on the You Tube page where this resides….

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Star Trek: Renegades

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

    I got nothin’ today…. Here is a discussion of politics from 2013, with a short rant from 2012….. It’s all still valid information, only, now, it’s worse by a factor of about 4…..

From 4/18/2013:

To attempt to soothe the ruffled feathers of my friend who wants me to rant, I give you now a rant from 2012, post-election category…. It kind of fits in with the morality play above…. sort of, maybe…. any who, enjoy…..

“Integrity is when what you say, what you do, what you think, and who you ARE all come from the same place.” — Madelyn Griffith-Haynie

Okay, I know we are all probably sick to death of politics, and the election, and everyone would like to have a break from talking and thinking about it….. I know I am. So, I’ll try to make this fairly short, and make it the last political diatribe for at least a day or two. It may be possible, if nothing in the news jumps up to stimulate my outrage (which may be on a short vacation itself….. I hope. I could do with the emotional space….).

Any who…. here is what I was thinking when I came across this little gem…. What if we devised a test, that in some way would enable us, as voters, to determine the relative status of each of the candidates according to this rule? A way, as it were, to measure their degree of integrity, which is something I think we can all agree would be a good thing to see in a politician, unlikely as it may be. If we could, say, set up a scale of integrity, and make it law that a person had to score in the top 5% of the scale in order to merely be eligible for office, I think we might see a whole new set of politicians, who had never before been seen in public.

In fact, in thinking about the current crop of those in office, it is entirely possible that ALL of those in office now might not be eligible…. I am not excluding the President, out of fairness, though I personally believe he might score in the top 10%…. I still have questions about some of the stuff he has signed that didn’t seem to be very well publicized, as they didn’t exactly fit with his image….. The newest version of the Patriot Act, the NDAA, that he signed last New Year’s Day comes immediately to mind….

I don’t care if he did try to mitigate some of the deleterious effects of the law, he still signed the damn thing, thereby seriously endangering a number of the first 10 Amendments to the Constitution. Plus, the method he used to keep it from the public awareness was rather suspect, in my mind, and reminiscent of the old days under Nixon, Johnson, Reagan, and the two Shrubs, may they all rot in whatever level of  Hell they are destined to occupy….. (I know, I know…. not being a Christian, that curse has little weight, but, hey, it’s a pretty clear indicator of my opinion of all of them….)

As I suspect it might, this grew to be somewhat more than I intended it to be, so I’ll cut it short here. But, my suggestion above, about the test for integrity that should be a given for political aspirants, is completely serious, and I wanted to get that out. Maybe by the next election, we can get the rest of the country to buy into it…. which should be interesting, and fun. I’ll be looking forward to the expressions on the faces of all the supporters of those now in office, when their people gloriously fail to pass the test…. and to the results it will have on society, should it ever be adopted…. I don’t see any way at all that it could do anything that wouldn’t improve the situation…..

And so I penned
It down, until at last it came to be,
For length and breadth, the bigness which you see.

~~ John Bunyan — Pilgrim’s Progress, Apology for his Book ~~


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Comedy_Tragedy

Notes of process and program…

Poems, alas, don’t chase through my head,
bumping and pushing each other like brothers at dinner.
They’re more ripped out of my innards, instead.
Time and circumstance reveal no ultimate winner.

Simmering and bubbling near my unconscious mind
these maddening rhymes blind me sans glimmer.
Building until bursting as if to be dined and wined,
the remaining denizens appear much slimmer.

Fiery visions retain such glorious fatal dimension,
in retrospect, yet fail to leave a permanent scar,
until blessed, or cursed, with focused attention,
singing, crying, bleeding, fast as a movie star.

Pretty soon can’t be soon enough, she said
to a chameleon colored thief bathed in moonlight.
Fancy candles in stripes of blue, gold, and red
foster honest dreams in shades of white.

Passage to daylight is problematic, at best:
beastly ghosts of insomniacs cast no shadow.
Even judges with robes can pass the wrong test
while the rest of us go with what we know.

~~ gigoid ~~

1/3/2013


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pearls_3

Naked Pearls

Human Philosophy

*********

“I think I am! I think I am!”

~~ the little engine that philosophized ~~

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“The unexamined life is not worth living to a human.”

~~ Attributed by Plato to Socrates, Apology ~~

*********

“Food for thought is no substitute for the real thing.”

~~ Walt Kelly, Putluck Pogo ~~

*********

“Als das Kind noch Kind war,
gab es diese Fragen:
Warum bin ich mich, und warum nicht dich?
Warum bin ich hier, und warum nicht dort?”

(“When the child was a child,
there were these questions:
Why am I me, and why not you?
Why am I here, and why not there?”)

~~ Rainer Maria Rilke ~~

*********

“It takes a long time to bring excellence to maturity.”

~~ Publius Syrus (42 BC) — Maxim 780 ~~

*********

“Except for our thoughts, there is nothing absolutely in our power.”

~~ Descartes ~~

*********

“Self-trust is the essence of heroism…
It speaks the truth, and it is just,
generous, hospitable, temperate,
scornful of petty calculations,
and scornful of being scorned.
It persists; it is of an undaunted boldness,
and of a fortitude not to be wearied out.”

    ~~ Ralph Waldo Emerson, _Essays_ ~~

*********

“It takes a very long time to become young.”

~~ Pablo Picasso ~~

*********

“It is the heart afraid of breaking
that never learns to dance.
It is the dream afraid of waking
that never takes a chance.
It is the one who won’t be taken
who cannot seem to give.
And the soul afraid of dying
that never learns to live.”

~~ Bette Midler, The Rose ~~


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Well, there you have it; yet another mess from gigoid’s fertile mind. I make no apologies, nor have I any regrets, other than to find it done before actually being fully awake. We’ll see how it flies before making any judgments. Meantime, I’ve got stuff, so, I will see y’all tomorrow, should the wherewithal to do so find its way into my presence…. Odds are good, once again….

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….


			

Silence falls brightly in the dark….

Ffolkes,

It’s a Tao thing, there is nothing _to_ understand.

~~ Lao Bee ~~

Galway Garden

Secret Garden

Galway, Ireland


Hajime…. It’s a Sunday. The world sleeps as I type, as it generally does, even without applying the incredible power of the Metaphorse. It seems to me, in fact, the world is weary. Yesterday, and again today, the feel of the air is sluggish, as if the very air we breathe is telling us to slow down, in the mad rush toward extinction in which our species seems to be engaged. What is more, I can feel the air’s sense of expectancy, as well; the world is waiting, with bated breath, almost as if there is some moment approaching which will have some great significance in the overall picture made by life on Earth…. The future is, if possible, even more on the edge of possibility than usual, whatever that means….

Oh, well, what the fuck….. Humans are capable of ignoring/denying ANYTHING, even their own sanity and/or chosen beliefs, whether true, false, or somewhere in between. So, we’re going to ignore the feeling of sitting beneath the twin-bladed sword of doom/salvation, and just get on with the mess we are creating here. The world has enough of a mess to deal with on its own, and so do we. Should it become necessary during the completion of this Pearl to make a quick exit, stage anywhere, well, you’ll understand, I am sure….

Now we’ve got the nonsense and niggling out of the way, such as we may, why don’t we get on with the rest of today’s somewhat epic effort…. I’ll give fair warning; there’s a long, introspective rant below, which took me a couple or three days to complete…. and, it still feels as if there should be more there (there is, but, it wouldn’t fit….). But, ’twill do for our purpose, which is merely to get someone, anyone, to think, and, to encourage them to make others do so as well…. The more we can get thinking, actual reasoning, the better chance we’ll all have of making it to the next century…. which, at this moment, is a wager showing very poor odds…..

For now, let’s be happy for the time we have, and get on with this…. We’ll use the teleportation unit, and be where we need to be, now….

Shall we Pearl?….

“Past of try is tried. Past of do is done.”

~~ Jedi Master Bee ~~


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Saintsaens

Camille Saint-Saëns


The music I generally listen to when composing/creating/writing is, about half the time, written by this man. He was one of the most prolific of all composers of music, of any genre, not just classical. Every piece I have heard was, to be completely honest, beautifully written, and pleasing to the ear, without ever becoming redundant, no matter how often one hears it. This is a group of pieces  with which I’m not familiar, but, am readily willing to expect ’twill be as enjoyable as all the others…. Enjoy, if you please; I know I will….

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Camille Saint-Saëns

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le penseur-rodin

“As I walked through the wilderness of this world, I lighted on a certain place where was a Den, and I laid me down in that place to sleep; and as I slept, I dreamed a Dream.” — The Pilgrim’s Progress, by John Bunyan, 1675

This one is a bit long, and wanders around quite a bit, but, that’s what happens sometimes in a dream….

In my life, I have seen much, studied much, and tried to learn all I could. This was never a conscious decision on my part; my earliest memories are all of times when I tried to find out things I didn’t know, just because it felt right; my curiosity is, and was, insatiable, about EVERYTHING. The entire world I perceived was fascinating, and I wanted to consume it all…. Everything I saw, and heard, and smelled, and touched, just made me want to find out more; I knew I didn’t know, and I had to, as if I needed it as badly as air to breathe, or food to eat.

As often as not, the results were not what I expected, but, since I didn’t know about anything, my expectations were not much of an issue; this, I think, gave me the ability to accept whatever I learned as real, and true. When what I was told by others didn’t match what I had already learned, I had no problem voicing that, which often created issues with adults, who seemed to want me to believe anything they said, even when it made no sense. “Why” was a question adults quickly got tired of hearing, mostly; kids were usually more willing to at least consider it as a reasonable request for information, even if they didn’t have anything particularly useful to tell.

I’m not sure how just now how that has affected my outlook in life, but, I do know I refuse, and always have done, to accept obvious untruths from whomever voiced them. Being small doesn’t mean I wasn’t smart; I also learned when to argue, and when to shut up, to avoid provoking large, seemingly violent big persons. But, once that particular lesson is learned, it also teaches one to be ever alert to the possibility of being lied to, whether it be in a gentle, attractive package, or, an intimidating one. In short, I learned to keep the crap detector on full at all times; when I didn’t, things didn’t get along as smoothly…. which disrupted my learning, thus defeating my purpose.

“Sometimes we are afraid to question because we confuse it with doubt, at times when doubt cannot be indulged. Questioning is not the same thing as doubting. …Living the questions requires a willingness to live with paradox, to endure confusion in our rational minds that only the intuitive mind can entertain: intuition accepts the paradox instead of changing it.” — Christina Baldwin

How, you may ask, does any of this relate to the quote with which we began this journey through my head? I couldn’t say, yet; this is not a fully thought out piece of literature, it is an introspective examination, of a thought which occurred to me as I stood at the back door with Leelu, looking at the cloudy sky (me, in a dream/thought state), and the birds, (Leelu’s primary interest). It went through my mind that, in my total time here on Earth, I’ve lived in shouting distance of the Edge of Life, since first beginning to walk the path of a scholar/warrior. Since I was born to a warrior, and a warrior’s wife, that covers pretty much all of it.

All my life I have been aware the world is a violent place, even though there was no more in my home-life than in any other; less, I think, than most, as my father and mother were well-matched, and he was not a violent man. He merely understood it, very well, in himself, and others, having been in the Army, when I was born, since WWII, which ended five years before I was born. He stayed in service after the war, as the economic advantages were not insignificant, even then. But, though he assumed the mantle of a warrior naturally, and wore it well for twenty years, he never became hard, or stupid, due to the regimentation of the life in any such organization.

When I left home, I began to study life more than I had already begun, and, in earnest, as it was now just me. I can’t say I made fewer mistakes than anyone else, but, I have never allowed myself to become destitute for lack of work, or, failed to act as honorably as I was able, no matter how hard life became…. As all of you know, it can get pretty tough out there…. Especially when, as I have done, one becomes a specialist in the methods and philosophy of dealing with violence, in martial arts first, then, in my work later in life, wherein the arts became my most valuable set of tools, an important asset to my knowledge and experience in toto.

A few days ago, while considering how to express a comment on another blog, I thought back over my life, about how many wars this country had been involved in during that span. I was, thanks to my age, and experience, not particularly surprised to learn I could not remember a single time the government of the United States had not had our troops occupying space in other lands, for purposes which had never been made entirely clear.

As I later found out, the true reasons for any of those occasions were never fully disclosed at all. In fact, from what I have read, researched, and can gather from available evidence, the government of this country has been actively lying to the public on a regular basis since before WWII, and, most likely, since the advent of the Industrial Age, in the nineteenth century.

While hardly a surprise, given the state of affairs in most of the world today, as one who is all-too-familiar with human nature’s violent side, it is nonetheless disheartening. As a warrior myself, I cannot say violence has no place in the world; I can, however, from that same basic experience, say that the unbridled violence we see is NOT a natural expression of the true nature of a complete human, so often found in those who have been a warrior, at least at some point in their life.

A true warrior knows when to fight, and, when to refuse to fight; in today’s culture, there is no restraint applied to the natural tendencies we possess; the moral/ethical duty of being a warrior is ignored completely, in favor of expedience, and ego-driven desire for power. As a scholar, as well as a warrior, this is clear, and, saddening….

A few days ago, I discussed what I believe to be the motivating factor in an issue connected to this one, to wit; the ongoing and persistent abuse of women, children, and other creatures, so common in, and, so much denied by modern society. In my mind, the ongoing state of war extant over too much of the planet’s surface is a result of the same failure, on the part of humanity at large, but, the males of the species in particular, who have perverted and ignored all the damage their childish, ego-driven, plainly cruel behavior has caused, for millennia, to ALL the other forms of life here on Earth, including their own species mates. This is, without a doubt, insane.

There really isn’t much more to say about this at this point in this narrative. In my own time, I have consistently refused to make war on anyone, for I have been given no valid reason for doing so. As a result, my own experience with violence in human nature has all been on a personal level, to wit; unarmed and armed hand-to-hand combat, mostly in the pursuance of my work as a mental healthcare technician, working with the most floridly insane, violent individuals in the craziest state, in the craziest country in the world, who regularly lost control of their emotions and behavior, becoming, in short, bestial in nature, without restraint of any kind. Eleven plus years of that supplied me with all the learning I needed to form an opinion on the value of that side our our nature, trust me….

As a result of that, I have the skills to keep myself safe, in any situation…. but, the entire reason I acquired those skills, as a martial artist/warrior/scholar, is so I could AVOID fighting, and killing, as best I could. In over 750 physical altercations during those years, I was given more than ample reason to learn to avoid fighting in my own life….

I hate it; I hate what it does to me, and to those with whom I contend. So, I learn, to try to discover how to stop violence before it gets to the point where a moral/ethical decision must be made, as to whether or not to be fully human, or, become like those who are not fully so, bringing pain, misery, and, possibly, death into one’s own life…. So far, I’ve been lucky enough, and skilled enough to be able to say I have yet to kill another human, nor any animal since before learning it was wrong. Or, as we like to say on the streets…. so far, so good….

The day is young, though…. and there are a lot of assholes out there, with balls but no dicks, or brains worth using, who could do with a good thumping…. They can usually be found hanging around centers of government, or churches, or, high-rolling hotels…. Anywhere the twin delusions of the value of money, and the necessity for a God, hold sway, actually, would be a good place to begin any hunt for worthy game….

So be it…..

Dont keep calm

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Comedy_Tragedy

Accentuated Lessons

Bold statements of calculated intent
Become common rule of the malcontent.
Avarice assumes such attractive wear,
Beguiling deception, illusory and fair.

Grasping and pulling with ghostly hands
Legally proper in all the signatory lands.
Seeking and finding each vulnerable soul,
Anguish as payment, for exacting the toll.

Wraiths of commerce’s invisible dead guards
Still haunt the dreams left in sad empty yards.
While absentee nobles sit in stiffly elegant splendor
Served by sad-faced detainees, in abject surrender.

Escape from reality is illusory at best
Often we falter, and fail its daily test.
Only when focused on inner strength,
Does peace stay with us for any length.

Peace lies within, always…..

~~ gigoid ~~

9/27/2012


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infinity

    This particular set of pearls is what I’d call a necklace, made of gems found by complete serendipity. I made no conscious choices, just picked the lines which struck my eye/mind’s fancy as they came up on the screen, in the exact order you see, though not all at once. I also had to wade through about 150-200 unsuitable quotes to find them, but, that doesn’t take long, when they’re so obviously right…. Still not sure what it all says/means, but, it’s all connected, for sure, one way or another…. But, then, isn’t it all?….

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“The truly brave are soft of heart and eyes,
And feel for what their duty bids them do.”

~~ Byron ~~

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“Every adult needs a child to teach;
it’s the way adults learn.”

~~ Frank A. Clark ~~

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“Only the ephemeral is of lasting value”

~~ Ionesco ~~

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“If we let things terrify us,
life will not be worth living.”

~~ Seneca, Epistles ~~

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“Call any vegetable,
Call any vegetable,
And the chances are good
That the vegetable
Will respond to you.”

~~ Frank Zappa, Lyrics in “Absolutely Free” ~~

*********

Courage can’t see around corners,
but goes around them anyway.”

~~ Mignon McLaughlin (The Neurotic’s Notebook) ~~

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“The frightening thing is not dying,
the frightening thing is not living.”

~~ T-Bone Burnett ~~

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I have here only made a nosegay of culled flowers,
and have brought nothing of my own
but the thread that ties them together.”

~~ Michael de Montaigne ~~

~~ Essays, Book iii, Chap. xii ~~

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“The best and most beautiful things in the world
cannot be seen or even touched.
They must be felt within the heart.”

~~ Helen Keller ~~

*********

“I’ve gone to look for myself.
If I should get back before I return,
keep me here.”

~~ Bill the Cat ~~

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“The purpose is to identify not with the body which is falling away,
but with the consciousness of which it is a vehicle.
This is something I learned from  my myths.
Am I the bulb that carries the light,
or am I the light of which the bulb is the vehicle?
If you can identify with consciousness,
you can watch this thing go like an old car.
There goes a fender, etc.
But it’s expected; and then gradually
the whole thing drops off
and consciousness rejoins consciousness.
I live with these myths — and they tell me to do this,
to identify with the Christ or the Shiva in me.
And that doesn’t die,it resurrects.
It is an essential experience of any mystical realization
that you die in your flesh
and are born to your spirit.
You identify with the consciousness in life
~ and that is the god.”

~~ Joseph Campbell ~~


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Well, there you have it, for what it is worth. And, no wise cracks from the gallery, if you please. We do our best; judging can be left to others, as long as they’re reasonably civil. If not, well, remember who’s the curmudgeon around here, and we’ll be fine, if not always unbloodied…. On that cryptic note, I shall bid thee adieu until tomorrow, when we’ll see what sort of trouble we can cause, one more time…. at least.

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

Kowabunga!


À bientôt, mon cherí….


Looks to be ’bout half-a-bubble off plumb….

Ffolkes,

Bogus, man! Somebody turned off my clock, or something…. I’d suspect Murphy’s hand at work, but, all I did is get up about an hour and a bit late…. It’s almost 6:30 AM, later, by a bunch, than I’ve been up in a coon’s age, (Okay, I’ll bite: How long does a raccoon live?….), an event not so negative, as much as inconveniently confusing. As much as possible, I’m not going to push for any real thinking, or decision-making, until after the first cup of the morning’s transfusion of blood has dripped into my veins; I have the distinct impression the results would be disastrous, at minimum….

How, then, do I manage to create an intro to this Pearl? If I can’t use my brain, what the heck is it good for? No, you don’t really have to answer that rhetorical question, any more than I have to consider it; I know what it’s good for. I just never get a chance to use it for that…. For what, you ask? Well, honestly, it’s best if I don’t tell you, as it could create difficulties further down the road, for both of us…. Given what I might end up doing the last few months of my life (whether those months are this year, or part of another one, a few years away….), it’s best if you don’t have any idea of my intentions, or my plans…. You wouldn’t be safe, and that would go against the grain of my sensibilities….

Since clandestine actions have been relegated far into the future, relatively speaking, we can get on with today’s effort, provided I can figure out some way to get this intro a bit further along…. I know, it’s probably enough as it is…. Hell, maybe you’re right, and it IS enough…. I know it’s not up to the usual standards we hold, in terms of the amount of crap you generally find here, but, I think the degree of sheer inanity gives it some extra panache, if you know what I mean…. I mean, I could have gone back to those stupid one line jokes I’ve been using here…. Hmm, maybe that’s the problem…. Smart Bee seems to LIKE the damn jokes, so maybe it WANTS the little conversational one-line rim shots I’ve been putting up there… go figure….

Well, okay then…. I don’t have any of the four line rim shots, but, here’s a really old joke, from a British comedian, recently passed away, whose body of work was referred to me by a Gentle Reader as a source for old one-liners…. It’s such an old joke, I had to give it a good dusting off before using it….

“Two cannibals were eating a clown – one said to the other, ‘Does he taste funny to you?’ ” — Tommy Cooper

As a male human being, I am now allowed to guffaw, or, at the very least, give a sardonic smirk for the irony…. You can do as you wish, in terms of your reaction; this site is completely influence free in that regard, as far as we can make it…. It is however, still somewhat strange, all in all, for which we have no apologies whatsoever…. In fact, if I can feel that what I’ve done here has added to the amount and quality of strange in the world, then I’ve done what I set out to do….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched.  They must be felt within the heart.” — Helen Keller
_____________________________

So, having arisen so late in the day, I have to admit, I’m completely discombobulated (I LOVE that word!…) (Well, I don’t love the feeling of being in the state of discombobulation (   🙂   ), but, the word itself is GRAND, isn’t it?….)….. Where was I? Oh, okay… So, I’m up late, my brain is mush, and a Pearl is required… What’s a boy to do but dive into the archives for something at least partially intelligent, or something that at least sounds that way….

Here, then, is a fairly mellow politirant, with a suggestion, not original to me, (the credit for the idea expressed below belongs to Arthur C. Clarke, from an idea he had in his novel, “Imperial Earth”, set in the year 2776, on the one thousand year anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence), for how to deal with the issue of corrupt politicians, or, indeed, how to deal with the whole idea of a professional class of politicians…. I think its a great idea, and completely workable…. Of course, none of the politicians we have now would like it, but, hey, that’s the whole problem, right? Right….

Any who, enjoy the rant, and think about the suggestion… I forgot to write down what day this was posted, but, it had to have been post-November 6, 2012, as it speaks about the election on that date….

Wednesday, 2012:

“Integrity is when what you say, what you do, what you think, and who you ARE all come from the same place.” — Madelyn Griffith-Haynie

Okay, I know we are all probably sick to death of politics, and the election, and everyone would like to have a break from talking and thinking about it…. I know I am. So, I’ll try to make this fairly short, and make it the last political diatribe for at least a day or two. It may be possible, if nothing in the news jumps up to stimulate my outrage (which may be on a short vacation itself…. I hope….. I could do with the emotional space….).

Any who…. here is what I was thinking when I came across this little gem…. What if we devised a test, that in some way would enable us, as voters, to determine the relative status of each of the candidates according to this rule? A way, as it were, to measure their degree of integrity, which is something I think we can all agree would be a good thing to see in a politician, unlikely as it may be to find it there; I don’t believe it occurs naturally…. If we could, say, set up a scale of integrity, and make it law that a person had to score in the top 5% of the scale in order to merely be eligible for office, I think we might see a whole new set of politicians, who had never before been seen in public.

In fact, in thinking about the current crop of those currently ensconced in the houses of government, it is entirely possible that ALL of those elected officials, who are now in office, might not be eligible under that restriction…. I am not excluding the President, out of fairness, though I personally believe he might score in the top 10%…. I still have questions about some of the stuff he has signed that didn’t seem to be very well publicized, as they didn’t exactly fit with his projected image…. The newest version of the Patriot Act, the NDAA, that he signed last New Year’s Day comes immediately to mind….

I don’t care if he did try to mitigate some of the deleterious effects of the law, he still signed the damn thing, thereby seriously endangering a number of the first 10 Amendments to the Constitution. Plus, the method he used to keep it from the public awareness was rather suspect, in my mind, and reminiscent of the old days under Nixon, Johnson, Reagan, and the two Shrubs, may they all rot in whatever level of  Hell they are destined to occupy…. (I know, I know…. not being a Christian, that curse has little weight, but, hey, it’s a pretty clear indicator of my opinion of all of them….)

As I suspected it might, this grew to be somewhat more than I intended it to be, so I’ll cut it short here. But, my suggestion above, about the test for integrity that should be a given for political aspirants, is completely serious, and I wanted to get that out. Maybe by the next election, we can get the rest of the country to buy into it…. which should be interesting, and fun. I’ll be looking forward to the expressions on the faces of all the supporters of those now in office, when their people gloriously fail to pass the test…. and to the results it will have on society, should it ever be adopted…. I don’t see any way at all that it could do anything that wouldn’t improve the situation….

And so I penned
It down, until at last it came to be,
For length and breadth, the bigness which you see.

– John Bunyan (1628-1688) — Pilgrim’s Progress, Apology for his Book
_____________________________

I wrote this poem as an expression of thanks, for the friend(s) I have in my life, friends who wouldn’t let me go under, in those times when I was sinking….

Unsolicited Gratitude
 
Fear becomes familiar when reality bodes us ill
pain assumes first position, no matter our will.
Powerless, we founder, no strength to prevail
anguished and afraid, against unwanted Fate we rail.

Still, a grain of hope deep inside, hidden well against need
gives us reason to survive, our starving souls to feed.
Failure of courage burdens time, of being bested,
until our souls, in submission, become foully infested.

Bitter tears wash through us each day, with little care,
no thought, no feeling, no wish, or need to be fair.
Rendered clueless, confusion falls upon us, as prey,
we surrender a piece of our soul, little as we may.

Yet, always, a bright beam of hope is seen from afar,
no matter how dreary, or dark, it may seem where we are.
None knows, nor would consent to tell, it seems
from whence it hails, or why it so brightly gleams.

Saving our sanity, absolving our unwanted fears,
dispelling the myths and lies that come with the years.
Each man has known the precious gift that hope may give
And gives glad thanks, as long as he may live.

~~ gigoid ~~

_____________________________

The following old-school variety will be a unique pearl, put together using a method of timing and selection heretofore untried…. I’m not even sure of my ability to describe exactly what parameters I’ll be setting, as the search for these connected aphorisms has taken place on three separate occasions, none of which were related in any elemental way…. I guess what I’m trying to say is, I have no idea how this will turn out, but, usually, when we try new techniques like this, it seems to work out pretty well, so, I’m confident this will do the same…. Enjoy!..

“The doctrine that the earth is neither the center of the universe nor immovable, but moves even with a daily rotation, is absurd, and both philosophically and theologically false, and at the least an error of faith.” — Roman Congregation decision against Galileo

“To command the professors of astronomy to confute their own observations is to enjoin an impossibility, for it is to command them not to see what they do see, and not to understand what they do understand, and to find what they do not discover.”– Galileo Galilei (1564-1642)

“Kids, the seven basic food groups are GUM, PUFF PASTRY, PIZZA, PESTICIDES, ANTIBIOTICS, NUTRA-SWEET and MILK DUDS!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

Okay! That, I think, will give you a clearer idea of where we are headed with this, so, make sure you’re safety harnesses are fully fastened, and you are hanging on for dear life to the soft, fluffy stuffed animals provided by your friendly flight attendants…. Hang on, ffolkes, these last four could get rambunctious….

“All riches come from iniquity, and unless one has lost, another cannot gain.  Hence that common opinion seems to be very true, “the rich man is unjust, or the heir to an unjust one.” Opulence is always the result of theft, if not committed by the actual possessor, than by his predecessor.” — St. Jerome (340?-420)

“Heroes as great have died, and yet shall fall.” — Alexander Pope (1688-1744) — The Iliad of Homer, Book xv, Line 157

“The human race, to which so many of my readers belong, has been playing at children’s games from the beginning, and will probably do it till the end, which is a nuisance for the few people who grow up. And one of the games which it is most attached is called, “Keep tomorrow dark,” and which is also named (by the rustics in Shropshire, I have no doubt) “Cheat the Prophet.” The players listen very carefully and respectfully to all that the clever men have to say about what is to happen in the next generation. The players then wait until all the clever men are dead, and bury them nicely. Then they go and do something else. That is all. For a race of simple tastes, however, it is great fun.” — Gilbert K. Chesterton (1874-1936)

“History is a lie commonly agreed upon.” — Nietzsche

I rest my case…..
_____________________________

“These things are fun, and fun is good.” — Dr. Seuss

Ted was right, you know, about all of it…. (Ted = Theodore Geisel, Dr. Seuss….). Especially this part…. I don’t know about y’all, but I had fun today…. which is odd, as it started out really badly, and seemingly went downhill from there…. I guess my topographical perception is as skewed as the remainder of my mind’s now dubious qualities…. In looking back over what I’ve done here this morning, I can only agree with that assessment, and will now fade quickly into the background, disappearing right before your eyes…. See ya….

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

dozer3

Facial reconstruction is gratis only for Federal gargoyles….

Ffolkes,
At the tone, the time will be…. 0646….. Pretty damn normal, if you ask me, which, I know you didn’t, but, since I’m obsessed with time in the mornings, I told you anyway…. Still, obsessive behavior aside, this is still the latest hour I’ve seen upon awakening in several months, so, I’m sort of jazzed about that. Sleep, or rather, the lack of sleep, has assumed too great a role in my life over the last few years, insidiously creeping up on me, a restless night here, a lost night there, and voilá, full-blown insomnia, with its ever-present gifts, dragging fatigue, and fuzzy head….

When younger, I could chalk it up to the activities of the night before, and throw off the worst of the fuzziness and fatigue, but, now that I’m older, the old reserve fuel tank is never quite full, and one ends up napping during the day like a two-year-old after three hours at a picnic…. Fortunately, I’m retired, and I’m old (well, old enough….), so napping is an acceptable pastime, both to those who might observe, and to me, who appreciates well the opportunity to give in to that particular urge…. I, like most children, fought like hell to grow out of taking naps, but, like most of us, have learned to enjoy the chance to rest and rejuvenate ourselves during the day….

So, sleeping so well that I see a new part of the morning, without having approached it with eyes already open, becomes an event worth celebrating, at least to the extent of acknowledging, and praising, its welcome presence. Of course, none of this really means anything that is worth writing about, but, it does get me a few paragraphs into the day’s effort without having to try to be too creative. Such an effort would, no doubt, be destined to fail, anyway, so it’s just as well…..

All that said, I can chalk it all up as a completed item on the day’s list, and get on with the regularly scheduled program…. Now, all I have to do is figure out what the hell our regularly scheduled program is, and we’re good to go. Since I’m up and relatively clear-headed, we’ll just dive in, and let Smart Bee determine what direction the program will take today…. ranting, joking, profound, or silly, it’s all grist for my mill in the morning, so let’s be off, to find our fates….. Shall we Pearl?…..
__________________________________

Having been lulled into a sense of false security by my late awakening, I should have known that Murphy would stick his nose in somewhere; it’s just too good an opportunity for him to be able to resist. Sure enough, he tried to fool me with some weird little aphorisms that were not merely not profound, but weren’t even pretty, thereby attempting to slow down the process…

Smart Bee, as the loyal software program it is, faithfully resisted Murphy’s ministrations, by slipping in the following group around, and between, the offerings he tried to saddle me with…. For a five-star pearl it isn’t bad, but, with the addition of the final two offerings, it enters another realm of thought altogether, one of great value to the discerning mind, and of great interest to the inquiring mind….. Enjoy! (And, pay attention! It’s all good stuff to know…. separate, or together….)

“The worst fear is the fear of living.” — Theodore Roosevelt

“There is nothing that can be said by mathematical symbols and relations which cannot also be said by words. The converse, however, is false. Much that can be and is said by words cannot successfully be put into equations, because it is nonsense.” — C. Truesdell

“It takes a very long time to become young.” — Pablo Picasso

“It is better to know nothing than to know what ain’t so.” — Josh Billings

“A platitude is simply a truth repeated until people get tired of hearing it.” — Stanley Baldwin

See? Isn’t that near-perfect? And when you add in these, well…..

“Very few beings really seek knowledge in this world. Few really ask. On the contrary, they try to wring from the unknown the answers they have already shaped in their own minds–justification, confirmation–forms of consolation without which they can’t go on. To really ask is to open the door to a whirlwind. The answer may annihilate the questions and the questioner.” — Anne Rice

“…just when I had you wriggling in the crushing grip of reason, too…” — Calvin & Hobbes

As I have had occasion to say previously, it’s all in the wrist, as is patently clear…. Oh, and the timing, of course, because, as we all know so well, timing is everything….
__________________________________
su tung-po    “Born in 1036, Su Tung-p’o was a famous Chinese poet. He was also called Su Shih. Born in present-day Sichuan province, Su was from a literary family. During the Sung Dynasty he wrote very simple poems based on Buddhist Philosophy. Su occupied many official posts, rising to president of the board of rites (which regulated imperial ceremonies and worship). He designed the parks surrounding Lake Si in Hangzhou. Five emperors came to the throne during his lifetime. ” — from Poemhunter.com

Shui Tiao Ko Tou

Will a moon so bright ever arise again?
Drink a cupful of wine and ask of the sky.
I don’t know where the palace gate of heaven is,
Or even the year in which tonight slips by.
I want to return riding the whirl-wind! But I
Feel afraid that this heaven of jasper and jade
Lets in the cold, its palaces rear so high.
I shall get up and dance with my own shadow.
From life endured among men how far a cry!

Round the red pavilion
Slanting through the lattices
Onto every wakeful eye,
Moon, why should you bear a grudge, O why
Insist in time of separation so th fill the sky?
Men know joy and sorow, parting and reunion;
The moon lacks lustre, brightly shines; is al, is less.
Perfection was never easily come by.
Though miles apart, could men but live for ever
Dreaming they shared this moonlight endlessly!

~~ Su Tung-p’o ~~

__________________________________

Y’all don’t really care why, and it really has no bearing on what happens, so I’m going to skip all the explanatory expostulation I normally provide before including something from the archives, and just say this…. I’m putting this here because it is one of my best rants, as it has an actual suggestion for an act, or proposed act, that actually might have a positive effect on the way the world is heading…

It’s a pretty simple idea, too, not terribly hard to institute, should it ever become popular enough to spread over the world, until the powers that be HAVE to respond one way or another to it…. which, I am quite certain, they will be hesitant to do, since it is an idea that holds THEM accountable to the rest of us…. Having thus risked boring you to death with unnecessary verbiage, read on, and think about it…. If you like the idea, share it…. enough said….
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
“Integrity is when what you say, what you do, what you think, and who you ARE all come from the same place.” — Madelyn Griffith-Haynie

Okay, I know we are all probably sick to death of politics, and the election, and everyone would like to have a break from talking and thinking about it….. I know I am. So, I’ll try to make this fairly short, and make it the last political diatribe for at least a day or two. It may be possible, if nothing in the news jumps up to stimulate my outrage (which may be on a short vacation itself….. I hope. I could do with the emotional space….).

Any who…. here is what I was thinking when I came across this little gem…. What if we devised a test, that in some way would enable us, as voters, to determine the relative status of each of the candidates according to this rule? A way, as it were, to measure their degree of integrity, which is something I think we can all agree would be a good thing to see in a politician, unlikely as it may be. If we could, say, set up a scale of integrity, and make it law that a person had to score in the top 5% of the scale in order to merely be eligible for office, I think we might see a whole new set of politicians, who had never before been seen in public.

In fact, in thinking about the current crop of those in office, it is entirely possible that ALL of those in office now might not be eligible…. I am not excluding the President, out of fairness, though I personally believe he might score in the top 10%…. I still have questions about some of the stuff he has signed that didn’t seem to be very well publicized, as they didn’t exactly fit with his image….. The newest version of the Patriot Act, the NDAA, that he signed last New Year’s Day comes immediately to mind…. (with the authorizations to view mail, view email, review library use, and other data, to use drones, anywhere, to hold and question US citizens without warrant, or any notification or justification, etc… The Act abridges every one of the Bill of Rights in some way…. This comment added post-publication….)

I don’t care if he did try to mitigate some of the deleterious effects of the law, he still signed the damn thing, thereby seriously endangering a number (correction: ALL…) of the first 10 Amendments to the Constitution. Plus, the method he used to keep it from the public awareness was rather suspect, in my mind, and reminiscent of the old days under Nixon, Johnson, Reagan, and the two Shrubs, may they all rot in whatever level of  Hell they are destined to occupy….. (I know, I know…. not being a Christian, that curse has little weight, but, hey, it’s a pretty clear indicator of my opinion of all of them….)

As I suspected it might, this grew to be somewhat more than I intended it to be, so I’ll cut it short here. But, my suggestion above, about the test for integrity that should be a given for political aspirants, is completely serious, and I wanted to get that out. Maybe by the next election, we can get the rest of the country to buy into it…. which should be interesting, and fun. I’ll be looking forward to the expressions on the faces of all the supporters of those now in office, when their people gloriously fail to pass the test…. and to the results it will have on society, should it ever be adopted…. I don’t see any way at all that it could do anything that wouldn’t improve the situation…..

And so I penned
It down, until at last it came to be,
For length and breadth, the bigness which you see.


— John Bunyan (1628-1688) — Pilgrim’s Progress, Apology for his Book

Any thoughts on this?…. Feel free to comment below, or respond on your own blog, or via email
__________________________________

Late it may be, but, it’s all fresh, or at least freshly commented upon…. “But,” he asked, “how does it read?” Well, let’s see…..  Not too badly at all, that’s how it reads…. So, without judging the content, it meets all necessary regulations and standards, if not all the demands of good taste. That’s never been too great a concern around here, anyway, so… off it goes, and I’m outta here, to go figure out how to spend another Sunday in Paradise, otherwise known as home sweet home…..  Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..

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

Which is Why….


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

gigoid

dozer3

Such fabulous shoes require spanking….

Ffolkes,
I should probably know better, by now, than to put fingers to keyboard during that period before the coffee is done. In spite of my advanced years, though, here I am, typing away, with nothing to say, just passing time until my brain decides to function…. Perhaps I should go first to perform my morning ablutions; yes, that is the right idea…. I go now, to worship at the porcelain throne, and contemplate my sins, myriad though they be….. according to the local preachers, anyway….. But, we don’t pay them any mind, as they are just jealous of my shirts…. I’ll be back, as Arnie is wont to say when in Terminator format….

Sorry ’bout that, ffolkes…. as I said, I should know better….. Well, here we are again, in a dangerous place. Why dangerous, you ask? It’s difficult to explain, but I’ll try…. It’s dangerous, for me, and consequently for you, because it’s too soon….. Too soon, you ask? Why, yes, I reply, too soon…. Well, what if we just waited a while? Hmm… not a bad suggestion, I think, but, probably destined to fail, as are almost any attempts to correct the situation, since I detect the hand of Murphy at work in this matter. As with almost everything he touches, waiting will only make things worse, as it gives him more time to turn his creativity to the punishment phase of his operation….

What now? Good question…. maybe I should look for a pearl for a moment or two, to see if there are any instructions or tips from my subconscious, or from the SB hackers….. be right back….

“The ox knoweth his owner, and the ass his master’s crib.” — Old Testament — Isaiah i, 3

Well, that’s an interesting find….. I generally try to stay away from the Old Testament; the pressure of life back then was such that the people who wrote the books in that tome tend to be more than a little touched by the sun, or Son, as you desire….. So, their advice is often a bit out of date, like when it counsels one on proper care of their ass (donkey variety, not human  _ _ _ hole types….  Not too useful in changing the oil on your Toyota…. This one seems a bit more useful than most, though I’m really not absolutely certain what kind of metaphor they are trying to make…. maybe something to do with ownership rights; they were sticklers for the laws back then…. Let’s try again, since that one wasn’t quite sufficient….

“A good old man, sir; he will be talking: as they say, When the age is in the wit is out.” — William Shakespeare (1564-1616), Much Ado about Nothing
— Act iii, Sc. 5

As you may have noted in past Pearls, I’m not overly impressed with Shakespeare, either, but have always admitted that he did write some fairly coherent, and majestically beautiful, prose, a category into which this one falls. It’s right on the money, in terms of its accurate take on human nature, in general, though it is a bit harsh on seniors, and does further the stereotype of seniors as being senile, a characteristic not all of us share.

I think this particular play, Much Ado About Nothing, is probably my favorite of all of his works, with the best cache of witty quotes and jokes, including a number of puns, and plays on words….. With Will, it’s kind of like Pearls…. there is a LOT of stuff written, but the gems are often buried in the crap surrounding it…..

And, on THAT note, one not completely inspiring, but true, I see we have reached that tenuous barrier that marks the boundaries of acceptable introductory sections…. In fact, it blew right past acceptable, and is now chasing after totally overboard…. Before it catches up to that, and the ensuing struggle tries to throw us all out of our seats, I think we’ll go for a dive…. now….. Shall we Pearl?
__________________________________

MORAL, adj.  Conforming to a local and mutable standard of right. Having the quality of general expediency.

“It is sayd there be a raunge of mountaynes in the Easte, on one syde of the which certayn conducts are immorall, yet on the other syde they are holden in good esteeme; wherebye the mountayneer is much conveenyenced, for it is given to him to goe downe eyther way and act as it shall suite his moode, withouten offence.  _Gooke’s Meditations_

— Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

A reader commented to me recently that my rants have gone soft; she enjoys it when I rake someone over the coals, figuratively speaking, and asked me when I was going to get back on my white horse, or my soapbox, as the cliché may be…. I told her it is most likely a result of having some of the pressure of living removed, by the acquisition of my SS benefits, so much so that I’m finding it hard to summon up the outrage needed to rant effectively…. Like Voldemort told Harry, when he tried to use the Cruciatus Curse against Bellatrix Lestrange, in HP5-The Order of the Phoenix, “You’ve got to MEAN it, Harry!”  Funny how not worrying about where the next meal is coming from takes some stress out of one’s life, isn’t it?….. Ha Ha…..

So, anyway, then I saw the above entry from the Devil’s Dictionary, and thought to myself, “AHA!”  (I do that a lot…), “Now, here’s a subject worthy of a rant!”…. This is absolutely true, even though morality is sort of like reality…. there are as many versions of what it means as there are people…. of which, each and every one believes that what they perceive is the only correct version, obviously…. Right….

So, you can see the problem right away…. As a society, we have an unfortunate tendency to try to legislate morality, so that everyone is compelled to behave according to a commonly accepted pattern of behavior…. Supposedly, this legislation is supposed act as some sort of magic bullet, that will stop all the bad things from happening, like stealing, killing, and general misbehavior that is upsetting to the rest of society…. It never works, at all, but, we keep on passing laws designed to enforce a common morality anyway….

Such a drama is now being played out on the national stage, as the Senate just defeated the new gun control reforms that 90% of the populace wants in place. Out of a hundred Senators, it only took 45 Republicans to bring the proposed law down, meaning that once again, a very small percentage of people have forced their views on the rest of the public, to suit their own morality, and, more importantly, to suit their own special interests, who paid good money for their votes, dammit!…. I am somewhat piqued about this, but see little in the way of anything to be done that will make any difference, in the big picture…. No matter how stringent the laws, people who want guns will get them, and use them on other people…. The new laws would have made that a bit more time-consuming, but no less possible, or even less probable….

Since I can’t thing of anything positive to suggest, other than to stay alert to what may end up as a critical issue, I will fill out what should normally be a rant, with a number of cogent pearls, to try to jab the stick into the appropriate eyes…. and my friend will have to wait a bit longer for a good, old-fashioned brouhaha, as I get nasty and vicious in my denouncement of the BRC, the churches, and the corporate masters….. I will say this to her….. have no fear, my outrage isn’t gone, just temporarily dormant, and I WILL be back to rant….. meanwhile, enjoy these tasty gems…..

“The greatest lesson in life is to know that even fools are right sometimes.” — Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

Linear Model:  An assumption concerning the nature of reality applied unquestioningly to every relationship as though God had determined that truth must always run in straight lines. — Smart Bee

“The clinching proof of my reasoning is that I will cut anyone who argues further into dogmeat.” — Sir Geoffery de Tourneville (ca. 1350)

“Has history ever recorded a time when the majority was right?” — Lazarus Long

“He would be the finer gentleman that should leave the world without having tasted of lying or pretense of any sort, or of wantonness or conceit.” –Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (121-180 AD) — Meditations, ix, 2

“A great deal of intelligence can be invested in ignorance when the need for illusion is deep.” — Saul Bellow

“If you want to be free, there is but one way; it is to guarantee an equally full measure of liberty to all your neighbors. There is no other.” — Carl Schurz (1829-1906)
__________________________________

I suppose, in a way, I’ve failed at the poetry challenge for the month, as I haven’t been creating one per day (except haiku, which I produce whenever I wish….. like today’s, which is fresh and clean….), and again today will need to use one from my archives, which, fortunately, have enough to choose from for all the days I’ve missed…. This one speaks to, and about, the friends who helped keep my hope alive when I was struggling, just to get enough to eat…..   As every day this month, these are being included as part of the April National Poetry Writing Month Challenge, with the updates to be found here:  http://www.napowrimo.net/    I hope you enjoy them…..

Haiku VII

Making it all up
I go merrily along;
waters of Lethe.

~~ gigoid ~~

“But groundless hope, like unconditional love, is the only kind worth having.” — EFF co-founder John Perry Barlow, “Cynthia Horner’s Eulogy”, Apr. 1994

Unsolicited Gratitude

Fear becomes familiar when reality bodes us ill
pain assumes first position, no matter our will.
Powerless, we founder, no strength to prevail
anguished and afraid, against unwanted Fate we rail.

Still, a grain of hope deep inside, hidden well against need
gives us reason to survive, our starving souls to feed.
Failure of courage burdens time, of being bested,
until our souls, in submission, become foully infested.

Bitter tears wash through us each day, with little care,
no thought, no feeling, no wish, or need to be fair.
Rendered clueless, confusion falls upon us, as prey,
we surrender a piece of our soul, little as we may.

Yet, always, a bright beam of hope is seen from afar,
no matter how dreary, or dark, it may seem where we are.
None knows, nor would consent to tell, it seems
from whence it hails, or why it so brightly gleams.

Saving our sanity, absolving our unwanted fears,
dispelling the myths and lies that come with the years.
Each man has known the precious gift that hope may give
And gives glad thanks, as long as he may live.

~~ gigoid

__________________________________

To attempt to soothe the ruffled feathers of my friend who wants me to rant, I give you now a rant from 2012, post-election category…. It kind of fits in with the morality play above…. sort of, maybe…. any who, enjoy…..
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

“Integrity is when what you say, what you do, what you think, and who you ARE all come from the same place.” — Madelyn Griffith-Haynie

Okay, I know we are all probably sick to death of politics, and the election, and everyone would like to have a break from talking and thinking about it….. I know I am. So, I’ll try to make this fairly short, and make it the last political diatribe for at least a day or two. It may be possible, if nothing in the news jumps up to stimulate my outrage (which may be on a short vacation itself….. I hope. I could do with the emotional space….).

Any who…. here is what I was thinking when I came across this little gem…. What if we devised a test, that in some way would enable us, as voters, to determine the relative status of each of the candidates according to this rule? A way, as it were, to measure their degree of integrity, which is something I think we can all agree would be a good thing to see in a politician, unlikely as it may be. If we could, say, set up a scale of integrity, and make it law that a person had to score in the top 5% of the scale in order to merely be eligible for office, I think we might see a whole new set of politicians, who had never before been seen in public.

In fact, in thinking about the current crop of those in office, it is entirely possible that ALL of those in office now might not be eligible…. I am not excluding the President, out of fairness, though I personally believe he might score in the top 10%…. I still have questions about some of the stuff he has signed that didn’t seem to be very well publicized, as they didn’t exactly fit with his image….. The newest version of the Patriot Act, the NDAA, that he signed last New Year’s Day comes immediately to mind….

I don’t care if he did try to mitigate some of the deleterious effects of the law, he still signed the damn thing, thereby seriously endangering a number of the first 10 Amendments to the Constitution. Plus, the method he used to keep it from the public awareness was rather suspect, in my mind, and reminiscent of the old days under Nixon, Johnson, Reagan, and the two Shrubs, may they all rot in whatever level of  Hell they are destined to occupy….. (I know, I know…. not being a Christian, that curse has little weight, but, hey, it’s a pretty clear indicator of my opinion of all of them….)

As I suspect it might, this grew to be somewhat more than I intended it to be, so I’ll cut it short here. But, my suggestion above, about the test for integrity that should be a given for political aspirants, is completely serious, and I wanted to get that out. Maybe by the next election, we can get the rest of the country to buy into it…. which should be interesting, and fun. I’ll be looking forward to the expressions on the faces of all the supporters of those now in office, when their people gloriously fail to pass the test…. and to the results it will have on society, should it ever be adopted…. I don’t see any way at all that it could do anything that wouldn’t improve the situation…..

And so I penned
It down, until at last it came to be,
For length and breadth, the bigness which you see.
— John Bunyan (1628-1688) — Pilgrim’s Progress, Apology for his Book
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Well, that went fairly well, if somewhat less than totally creatively…. I’m still looking for that magic bullet, unfortunately; old habits die hard. Nonetheless, I’m done, so that has to count for something, doesn’t it?…. Let’s see how it flows…..  Okay, again, not too bad, all in all, so, it’s going out, as is…. gigoid has spoken. Also, gigoid is tired now, and wants to go back to sleep…. Say bye, bye, gigoid….   Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..

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

Which is Why….


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

gigoid

dozer3

A plethora of hothouse plants….

Ffolkes,
Softly crept the morning light, filling the room in golden rays of warmth. As the eyes of the young maiden opened, they fell upon the worried face of her brother, standing by her bed, dressed for his morning ride. His fair, innocent face, marred by the worry in his eyes, looked down at her as if he could see into her mind with the intensity of his gaze. She smiled up at him, wanting to ease the worry out of his eyes and mind, and spoke, “I’ll be fine, Malcolm. There isn’t even a bruise.” He only frowned harder, replying, “I don’t care. I don’t like to hear that you’ve been hurt, even if it was your own cupidity that caused it….” “I just wanted to see….” “Bah!,” he interrupted, “…. ‘only wanted to see’… How many times have I heard you say that in our life, as I was dragging you to the healer again? You have no sense of danger, Malia, and it worries me. Especially when you try to climb up to see a dragon’s nest of eggs….. WHAT WERE YOU THINKING!” It burst out of him, with the force of his emotional storm, leaving him breathless and angry.

All done…. That just sort of leaked out as I sat down to start this morning. I don’t know if there is any significance to it, but it’s not bad, so maybe I’ll try to keep this one to work on and expand later…. Dragons always make for a good story…. Why is that, do you think? Is it some kind of racial memory of ancient days, when dragons roamed the Earth? Is it a prescient image in our minds, of a time in our future when dragons assume some pivotal role in our fate? Is it just imagination and wishful thinking? I don’t know for sure (though I tend to favor the first reason….), but there is something about the concept of dragons that fascinates the human mind. Even the most egregiously plagiaristic books with dragons as a key character seem to sell in today’s market, no matter how well, or how poorly written. I guess, if I’d like to sell a story, that might be a good way to go….

For now, though, we’ll drag ourselves out of the realms of imagination for a time, and go off in search of the oysters, with their hidden gems inside, that go together to make a Pearl of Virtual Wisdom. It’s not an easy task, nor one that furnishes me with much beyond the sanity it saves, but, hey, somebody’s got to do it, and I’m the only one here, so….. Shall we Pearl?
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A well known scientist (some say it was Bertrand Russell) once gave a public lecture on astronomy.  He described how the earth orbits around the sun and how the sun, in turn, orbits around the center of a vast collection of stars called our galaxy.  At the end of the lecture, a little old lady at the back of the room got up and said: “What you have just told is rubbish.  The world is really a flat plate supported on the back of a giant tortoise.”  The scientist gave a superior smile before replying, “What is the tortoise standing on?”  “You’re very clever, young man, very clever,” said the old lady.   “But it’s turtles all the way down!” — Stephen Hawking, “A Brief History of Time”

In other words, reality is, for you, whatever you believe it to be….. and, if you believe it, no logic, no evidence, and no kind of argument at all will ever change your mind. The human imagination is so powerful that it can actually make us see, and feel, things that are not real, just to fulfill the inner urgings our minds. This latest election is an example of this talent, as over 50 million people managed to convince themselves that their candidate was not a congenital liar, not a misogynist, not a thief, and instead was an honest, trustworthy human being. It took some really powerful self-deception to pull THAT off, as he spent six months and more exhibiting all three of those behaviors, and not a one of those who voted for him will admit to seeing any of it….. Makes one wonder, sometimes, just how some folks get to be as old as they are, since they are in such denial of reality….

“It is a mistake to believe that a science consists in nothing but conclusively proved propositions, and it is unjust to demand that it should. It is a demand only from those who feel a craving for authority in some form and a need to replace the religious catechism by something else, even it it be a scientific one.” — Sigmund Freud

Siggy was very often full of shit with his psychoanalytic conclusions, but he got this one dead on. There does seem to be a large percentage of people out there who want the universe to be easy to understand, and amenable to what they wish it to be, rather than being strong enough to accept it the way it is. I try to be tolerant of these folks, as they are obviously operating with a mental handicap, but it’s hard sometimes, when they try to make their idiocy spread to others.

The recent campaign we just suffered through helped to identify the people who feel this way, as they all, to a man, voted for the loser. I’ve never seen an election that so clearly and completely showed the schism in this country between those who use their minds to hide from reality, denying it as much as they can, and those who use their minds for something other than sitting on…. I saw a good one in Smart Bee recently, & can’t find it, but it says, “Where you keep your mind is much like a coin toss…. heads you win, tails you lose.”…..

“The release of atom power has changed everything except our way of thinking…the solution to this problem lies in the heart of mankind.  If only I had known, I should have become a watchmaker.” — Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

Albert, as we all know, was perhaps the greatest of us who lived in the last century. The knowledge and wisdom that he gave us through his lifetime is a legacy that we can never appreciate enough. This particular insight is one that I believe completely, for it expresses the whole issue very succinctly. The heart of men is fickle, and will follow the will of its owner, without knowing what is true or not. If the owner is deliberately ignorant of what is true, or if they deny it, because it doesn’t fit in with their prejudices and misconceptions, then the heart is led into realms of dishonesty, and dishonor, suffering changes that leave it forever blackened, and in despair.

“First you have to be able to see world as it is not as you wish it were. or because of your ignorance, misconceptions, and prejudices.” — Smart Bee

It is this sort of deliberate denial of reality that is leading us to perdition, and one of our own devising. No sane or educated person can deny any longer that our habits are killing the planet’s ecosystem….. the evidence is too great. (Not that the planet itself is in danger… oh no. It will just rain for a couple centuries, and wash away the crap we deposited, until we are just a memory, in nobody’s mind…..) It is not a matter any more of conjecture, or speculation; we can now see first hand the effects on climate, as super-storms, seasons changing, and ice-cap melting continues unabated, thanks to the millions of tons of carbon monoxide pumped into the air on a daily basis. No, only a person who denies reality, who refuses to consider evidence, even when it is poking them in the ribs, can argue that there is no problem. And, once again, the recent election serves to help identify those folks for those of us who do accept reality; it will be handy knowledge when it comes time for a reckoning…..

“It is only the ignorant who despise education.” — Publius Syrus (42 BC) — Maxim 571

The sea-change that is needed for us to make the changes necessary for survival don’t seem to be happening, as far as I can see. When almost one sixth of the entire population of this country, supposedly an educated one, can vote for such an egregious example of the very attitudes that got us here, then the chances of their hearts all of a sudden seeing the light of day are pretty slim, and approaching none rapidly. It’s sad, really, to think that it is the stupids who will win in the end, bringing the rest of us down with them…. If I were a bit stupider myself, I would start killing them, in an effort to stem the tide…. but, alas, by doing so, I would be joining their ranks, and I couldn’t live with that anyway…..
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I feel like a change of mood, so here is something about 180 degrees from the rest of today’s material…. Enjoy!

The face that launch’d a thousand ships

Was this the face that launch’d a thousand ships,
And burnt the topless towers of Ilium?
Sweet Helen, make me immortal with a kiss.
Her lips suck forth my soul: see where it flies!
Come, Helen, come, give me my soul again.
Here will I dwell, for heaven is in these lips,
And all is dross that is not Helena.
I will be Paris, and for love of thee,
Instead of Troy, shall Wittenberg be sack’d;
And I will combat with weak Menelaus,
And wear thy colours on my plumed crest;
Yea, I will wound Achilles in the heel,
And then return to Helen for a kiss.
O, thou art fairer than the evening air
Clad in the beauty of a thousand stars;
Brighter art thou than flaming Jupiter
When he appear’d to hapless Semele;
More lovely than the monarch of the sky
In wanton Arethusa’s azur’d arms;
And none but thou shalt be my paramour!

Christopher Marlowe
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“Integrity is when what you say, what you do, what you think, and who you ARE all come from the same place.” — Madelyn Griffith-Haynie

Okay, I know we are all probably sick to death of politics, and the election, and everyone would like to have a break from talking and thinking about it….. I know I am. So, I’ll try to make this fairly short, and make it the last political diatribe for at least a day or two. It may be possible, if nothing in the news jumps up to stimulate my outrage (which may be on a short vacation itself….. I hope. I could do with the emotional space….).

Any who…. here is what I was thinking when I came across this little gem…. What if we devised a test, that in some way would enable us, as voters, to determine the relative status of each of the candidates according to this rule? A way, as it were, to measure their degree of integrity, which is something I think we can all agree would be a good thing to see in a politician, unlikely as it may be. If we could, say, set up a scale of integrity, and make it law that a person had to score in the top 5% of the scale in order to merely be eligible for office, I think we might see a whole new set of politicians, who had never before been seen in public.

In fact, in thinking about the current crop of those in office, it is entirely possible that ALL of those in office now might not be eligible…. I am not excluding the President, out of fairness, though I personally believe he might score in the top 10%…. I still have questions about some of the stuff he has signed that didn’t seem to be very well publicized, as they didn’t exactly fit with his image….. The newest version of the Patriot Act, the NDAA, that he signed last New Year’s Day comes immediately to mind….

I don’t care if he did try to mitigate some of the deleterious effects of the law, he still signed the damn thing, thereby seriously endangering a number of the first 10 Amendments to the Constitution. Plus, the method he used to keep it from the public awareness was rather suspect, in my mind, and reminiscent of the old days under Nixon, Johnson, Reagan, and the two Shrubs, may they all rot in whatever level of Hell they are destined to occupy….. (I know, I know…. not being a Christian, that curse has little weight, but, hey, it’s a pretty clear indicator of my opinion of all of them….)

As I suspect it might, this grew to be somewhat more than I intended it to be, so I’ll cut it short here. But, my suggestion above, about the test for integrity that should be a given for political aspirants, is completely serious, and I wanted to get that out. Maybe by the next election, we can get the rest of the country to buy into it…. which should be interesting, and fun. I’ll be looking forward to the expressions on the faces of all the supporters of those now in office, when their people gloriously fail to pass the test…. and to the results it will have on society, should it ever be adopted…. I don’t see any way at all that it could do anything that wouldn’t improve the situation…..

And so I penned
It down, until at last it came to be,
For length and breadth, the bigness which you see.
— John Bunyan (1628-1688) — Pilgrim’s Progress, Apology for his Book
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I’m almost sorry to come to the end this morning. The thoughts are flowing easily, and Smart Bee is coming up with decent material…. but, all good things must come to an end…. otherwise it will never get posted.  🙂

I hope you enjoyed today’s little trip through the minefields in my head; I didn’t see any explosions that will cause serious injury, and around here, we call that a win….. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


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

gigoid

Dozer

Kowabunga!