Bombastic echoes in a lovely hat….

Ffolkes,

Around existence twine,
(Oh, bridge that hangs across the gorge!)
ropes of twisted vine.

~~ Basho ~~

watching

Cross-eyed? Sez who?….


Hajime…. Well, here we are again, ever so happy to be at our desk, bereft of mind, broken of body, and ready to rumble. I know I said I’d have a fully fresh Pearl, but…. reality intervened, so to speak. So, what you get is more wysiwyg, after a fashion. Oh, it’s all relatively fresh, but, completing it all became a bit of a chore when SB decided to portion out pearls at a miserly rate. So, we’ll go to the archives for a rant, and, a poem. Other than that, it’s fresh. Not up to snuff, but, it meets the minimum standard, our default.

I suppose I could chat a bit about my day off, but, as it turns out, it was little more than a period of rest, it seems, as I got little done of a productive nature other than sleep, which, for some unknown reason, came quickly and easily last night. Go figure. At any rate, I have some energy, which I will now proceed to waste shamelessly to get this done. That doesn’t make me a hero, though there are those who might think it does; they’d be off the mark, as there was no altruism or selflessness involved. Just rest and recovery for me; since it seems to have worked, we’ll call it a draw, and move on.

Now we’ve completed the obligatory meaningless drivel for the day, perhaps we should think about getting the slow on the toad for the day. I know I always enjoy life better when it’s in the bag, so, we’ll find a bag, and get in. Why, look! Here’s a nice, reusable shopping bag right here! Funny how that works, eh? We’ll take advantage of the handy prop, which we placed there earlier for just this purpose, so we can say we have lived up to the hype seen in all the ads. Not that we wrote, or even asked for the ads, but, like a hive of bees in your head, there they are. So be it.

That’s quite enough of that, I think. Ffolkes, we’re going on now, before  this gets any further out of hand…. Luigi, wake the hell up & get us out of here, now!…. Hang on, ffolkes, Luigi’s still more than just a little hung over….

Shall we Pearl?

“Contrariwise”, continued Tweedledee,
“If it was so, it might be;
and if it were so, it would be;
but as it isn’t, it ain’t.
That’s logic.”

~~ Lewis Carroll, “Alice in Wonderland” ~~


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

fred_neil2

Fred Neil

Image from thatsallfolk.free.fr via Google Images


It’s been a while since I listened to this man’s music; too long. He has one of the finest voices, ever, and is, quite simply, a powerful songwriter. He’s not very well known, though there are tunes he wrote which everyone alive has heard, and loved…. For example, “Everybody’s Talkin’ At Me”….. Enjoy, ffolkes…

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

Fred Neil

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

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

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Sandclock .jpg

    As noted, here is a piece that should fit the bill for today; light, but with a touch of wit, not to mention a stiff dose of inanity… or, maybe that was insanity…. Ah, well, so be it….. Enjoy!….

From 6/14/2014:

In this section, we have been running a new style pearl, (there’s that royal ‘we’ again….), with pictures to go along with whatever quotes and/or comments I come up with…. The latest incarnation involves a new subject of interest, the Wise Old Pine Cone, who has been kind enough to allow me to photograph his wanderings around town, to record his interactions with people, and the environment, as he wends his way around the town….. Yesterday, I posted the photos of when I accompanied him to the local ball team’s night game, which came out fairly well….

Sadly, the Wise Old Pine Cone, by the time we left the ball park, had consumed WAY too many brewskis, and has yet to get out of bed…. He’s pretty small, and a few beers really do a number on him; I’ve seen him stay in bed for three days after a bad session with wine, and beer isn’t any better for him…. He’ll be alright, but, he’ll be out of action for a day or two, so, we’ll have to find something else for this section….. Let me think….

Okay, you’ve convinced me…. I’ll rant….

“There is nothing a man can do to guarantee success, but there is nothing that can defeat him if he won’t give up.” — Greg Praino

Well, perhaps I won’t rant today; it doesn’t mean I’m giving up, but…. I just went to look for a rantable headline from the news…. Of the eleven headlines on the world news page, eight were about various bombings, battles, or other war activities, mostly in the middle east, where the Islamic sects are all fighting to see who will become the sole arbiter of the Muslim future….. never realizing how silly and counter-productive they are being, in terms of survival…. But, then, most people engaged in war are not in a very intelligent frame of mind, anyway….

(And, how can a Muslim extremist group name themselves after an Egyptian goddess over seven thousand years old {Isis}? I thought they hated ANY other religion…. Ah well, stupid is as stupid does…)

The point is, I couldn’t decide WHICH subject to rant about…. There are plenty of wars being fought, none of which make any sense…. There are  governments still robbing the people, or oppressing them unmercifully; the churches are still butting into everything, as is their habit…. I see where the Pope is trying to be a mediator between Israel & Palestine (good luck with that!….), and now, the Presbyterian Church is doing SOMETHING over in Iraq, or Iran, to get involved with that whole mess…. what a bunch of idiots!…

Cars and factories are still streaming carbon monoxide, and carbon dioxide into the air by the hundreds of millions of tons, every day, so pollution continues unabated, and climate change keeps changing, so, we can kiss our asses goodbye, once we figure out how long we have…. Religious fanatics and fundies of all varieties continue to wage their holy wars, blaming all that is wrong in the world on anything but their own actions…. Bankers and politicians continue to work together to steal everything that isn’t nailed down from the public, all enforced by paramilitary police forces, blindly obedient myrmidons with guns, and really bad attitudes, due to their completely unwarranted sense of entitlement regarding their psycho/sociopathic need to be seen as authority figures….

All of the insanity I’ve previously commented upon here continues, relatively unabated, as the world skips merrily down what it BELIEVES is the garden path, completely oblivious, calmly seated in a handbasket, never even wondering why it is getting so bloody hot…. And people wonder why I rant….

I found no particular headline to get me started, but, as can be seen by the above, none are really necessary for me to find my anger about the state of the world…. My anger is based in the realization that NONE of it is necessary; if people would take responsibility for themselves, and stand up to the assholes who are oppressing everyone who puts up with it, we could fix this broken puppy….

I’m a realist, though, and, as far as I can see, realistically, it ain’t gonna happen…. so, I’ll pick a few pearls, to make how I feel about it clear, and be done with it for today…. I’m mad, but, so mad, I don’t even want to talk about it any more….. Here, take these…. No worries, you’ll live; there are only five of them….

“I have always thought the actions of men the best interpreters of their thoughts.” — John Locke

“All I know is just what I read in the Congressional Record. They have had some awful funny articles in there lately. As our government deteriorates, our humor increases.” — Will Rogers

“I have never found, in a long experience of politics, that criticism is ever inhibited by ignorance.” — Harold MacMillan

“Look for a tough wedge for a tough log.” — Publius Syrus (42 BC) — Maxim 723

“You know how dumb the average guy is?  Well, by definition, half of them are even dumber than THAT.” — J.R. “Bob” Dobbs, ripping off George Carlin, who made that point YEARS before Bob finished puberty….

There you go, ffolkes…. a pointed, bitchy, but accurate, five-star pearl….. Let’s go on, shall we?….

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

Emily-Dickinson

    Some days, only this poet will do…..

I measure every grief I meet
   With analytic eyes;
I wonder if it weighs like mine,
   Or has an easier size.

I wonder if they bore it long,
   Or did it just begin?
I could not tell the date of mine,
   It feels so old a pain.

I wonder if it hurts to live,
   And if they have to try,
And whether, could they choose between,
   They would not rather die.

I wonder if when years have piled–
   Some thousands–on the cause
Of early hurt, if such a lapse
   Could give them any pause;

Or would they go on aching still
   Through centuries above,
Enlightened to a larger pain
   By contrast with the love.

The grieved are many, I am told;
   The reason deeper lies,–
Death is but one and comes but once
   And only nails the eyes.

There’s grief of want, and grief of cold,–
   A sort they call ‘despair,’
There’s banishment from native eyes,
   In sight of native air.

And though I may not guess the kind
   Correctly yet to me
A piercing comfort it affords
   In passing Calvary,

To note the fashions of the cross
   Of those that stand alone
Still fascinated to presume
   That some are like my own.
 
~~ Emily Dickinson ~~


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pearls_3

Naked Pearls

Beginning to End

*********

“When you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced.
Live your life so that when you die,
the world cries and you rejoice.”

~~ Old Indian saying

*********

“Belief gets in the way of learning.”

~~ Robert Heinlein, Time Enough for Love ~~

*********

“There’s an alternative.
There’s always a third way,
and it’s not a combination of the other two ways,
it’s a different way.”

~~ David Carradine ~~

*********

“It is sometimes expedient to forget who we are.”

~~ Publius Syrus — Maxim 233 ~~

*********

“A ship in harbor is safe — but that is not what ships are for.”

~~ John A. Shedd ~~

*********

“If you come to a fork in the road, take it.”

~~ Yogi Berra ~~

*********

“There are places I remember all my life,
though some have changed,
some forever, not for better,
some have gone and some remain.
All these places had their moments
with lovers and friends I still can recall.
Some are dead and some are living.
In my life I’ve loved them all.”

~~ the Beatles ~~

*********


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

Having completed my vow, I’ll take my leave with less than the usual to-do. I will, however, issue the usual caveat, to wit: I’ll be back tomorrow. I figure that’s fair warning, and, I know for sure it’s the best you’re gonna get. See ya, ffolkes; the odds are running in our favor….

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 -- 7009


À bientôt, mon cherí….


		
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Mildred, leave the toilet seat where it is….

Ffolkes,

“You can easily judge the character of others
by how they treat those
who can do nothing for them
or to them.”

~~ Malcolm Forbes ~~

potd-bear-family-Hank Perry
From the London Daily Telegraph, Animal Pictures of the Year, 2014


Reality, having assumed a configuration untenable to my sanity, has retreated from my perception, leaving me stranded, forlornly seeking a fantasy world in which to spend my time. Of course, there are many from which to choose, making the process of making a choice that much more intimidating. The feeling of doom, with its concomitant companion, depression, lies in wait behind a number of them, always ready to kick me to the curb with its melancholy insistence on dwelling upon that which cannot be changed…. Others are more friendly, yet, contain their own demons, certain to devour even more of my soul than even Reality can consume…. All of them, from the first to the last, are certain to make things worse, for any retreat from what is Real only worsens the issues one has in that state….

Wow…. now THAT is a bummer of a way to start the day, isn’t it? I think, maybe, given how downright depressing nature of the above paragraph, the proctors will allow me to begin again. The authorities who regulate this process are aware of the problems that can ensue when such material is spread around; the damn stuff grows like weeds, given half a chance….. So…. I think we should start over, don’t you? Well, too bad, because we are…. Here, let’s try this….

What was that? Who’s there? Did I say something? Oh, I see, alright…. Good morning, L & G, I see you all have your boarding passes correctly stapled to your foreheads, so, the scanners should be able to get us all on board shortly. Allow me to welcome you to ECR Airlines, your friendly first-class carrier to Reality, and back. We hope you enjoyed the visit to our waiting room by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, Old Maid Division, who treated us all to a rendition of John Sebastian Bock’s Ode to Fish. To enhance your vacation experience, and to give you an opportunity to regain your hearing, no on-board entertainment will be provided…. If you’d all take your seats, and buckle yourselves in, we can be on our way….

There, is that a bit better? No? Well, shit. Oh well, fuck it, I’m done. We’ll just have to go with what we’ve got, and trust to our luck to see us to the other end of the Pearl…. I’m tired of this nonsense, so, as I have already mentioned at least once, fuck it…. Let’s dive….

Shall we Pearl?

“‘If everybody minded their own business,’ the Duchess said, in a hoarse growl, ‘the world would go round a deal faster than it does.'” — Lewis Carroll, “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”

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“Life is full of surprises when you’re up th’ stream of consciousness without a paddle…”

~~ Zippy the Pinhead ~~


There is a great deal I could say about this man; his words, and books, have had a strong influence on my life. More importantly, that influence has been one I can truthfully say has brought me nothing but good results, for having embraced the knowledge, and the mindfulness, Mr. Watts shared with the world for much of his life. He was truly one of the most important philosophical minds we, as humans, have ever seen; his presence is missed sorely in these troubled times, but, his words of wisdom and reason remain, showing us the way to reach our true potential, if we choose to listen…

Alan Watts: Full TV series

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We the People...
“Never create by law what can be accomplished by morality.”

~~ Charles-Louis Secondat Baron de Montesquieu ~~


We begin today’s section devoted to venting the frustration and angst created in me, by the state of our society/world, with yet another ironic statement of advice from a reliable social critic, giving voice to a warning, one which has been repeated often throughout history. Sadly, it is also a warning never, ever remembered by those who MAKE laws, to the everlasting regret of everyone alive. Even today, in our computerized world, fueled by the availability of universal access to ALL of mankind’s accumulated wisdom, nothing seems to prevent modern fanatics and/or ignoramae from continuing their efforts to force their own morality upon everyone else, by passing laws intended to shape the societal norms….

Even considering the wide array of sources of information I try to use, to maintain an even balance from all sides of the issues at hand, everything in the world  seems to be, quite simply, turning to shit, right before our eyes…. Nothing any of the great sages of history have said, warning mankind of the danger of unreasoning stupidity, generally involving some sort of delusional, or self-serving institutional system of thought, has altered the overall prevalence of deliberate ignorance in shaping society’s approach to Life at Large. In short, nothing we’ve ever had told to us, by those among us smart enough to see the Truth, has ever been of use in keeping our inherent tendency to look for the easy way…. or, to prevent the more ruthless and immoral among us from taking advantage of those who allow fear to rule their existence.

“Never underestimate the power of human stupidity.” — Lazarus Long, from Time Enough For Love, by Robert A. Heinlein

I first read this when I was about 12 or 13 years old; every day since that time has provided me with evidence in support of its ongoing relevance, reinforcing my decision to adopt it as a proven theorem, suitable for everyday wear as armor against the worst effects of such ubiquity…. Every day I witness people performing acts of incredible stupidity, not just on TV, but, everywhere I look; on the streets, in the stores, in churches, in businesses, homes, and, most especially, in Congress….

Calm down, you knew we had to come to this point, didn’t you? You should have known, as soon as the quote from Lazarus showed up, talk of the public humiliation embodied by the US House of Representatives, along with the US Senate…. Hell, ffolkes you MUST have known such talk couldn’t be far behind…. Both of those houses, by their actions over the past 50 years, for all of which I’ve steadily observed their antics, showed, to the world, as well as me, a consistent, practical demonstration of the very definition of the word “stupid”….. Anyone who disagrees is free to do so, but, obviously, they must have been living on another planet since before 1950…. Tough to do, since we humans didn’t even get to our own Moon until 1969….

“Imagine, if you will, that I am an idiot. Then, imagine that I am also a Congressman. But, alas, I repeat myself.” — Mark Twain

As is apparent, our generation is not the first in this country to suffer from the asinine goings on in Washington D.C. In the less-than-glorious past of our country, more than one Senator, and/or Representative of the House, have acted as role models, prompting Twain to hold them up as examples of idiocy, one of his finer talents. In fact, one of his most telling insults, in my mind, is one I’m positive was made in reference to a politician of his era, though I couldn’t say which one it might have been…. If his work, and that of Ambrose Bierce, who wrote a bit earlier than Twain, are any indication of the public perception of typical politicians, then the following pearl makes a perfect statement of that view during most of the 19th century….

“His ignorance covers the world like a blanket, and there’s scarcely a hole in it anywhere.” — Mark Twain

Unfortunately, the description also can be, and must be, applied to far too many of the human race; the sheer, ever-increasing number of mundanes in the world, each one determined to maintain the status quo, imparts to society so great an inertia, any changes needed require herculean effort by large numbers of people, before any real reform, or even negative progress, can show any effect on society as a whole…. Only massive outpouring of human energy, over long periods of time, can cause society to alter the slightest custom….

This is why I like to say humanity’s bus is driven by, and, maintained by, those of whom the most charitable description of their relative intelligence might be considered to be derogatory….. In short, our fate as a species is being decided by folks who have trouble out-thinking rocks, who serve chiefly as a means for transporting their own ass from chair to toilet, while demonstrating, on a consistent basis, the emotional range of a button-hole.

In case it isn’t apparent, I’m not a big fan of politicians…. preachers either. Nor anyone whose primary goal in life is in any way involved in controlling other people for their own gain…. To me, that includes far too many of those who are in positions of authority in our world, in which sociopathy has become the most valuable and efficient means of gaining power and influence, not merely in what used to be termed the underworld, but, in government, churches, business, academia, the medical community, police and military…. All these powerful entities are all under the spell of the cult of self-love, what my uncle called ‘Me-Firsterism’, but, which I simply call ‘Evil’, borne out of a deep laziness, lack of compassion, and amorality….

But, then, that’s me…. Most of the world doesn’t even think about much of this sort of issue; they’re too busy trying to get by, to make the rent, or the car payment, or the food bill, to spend much mental energy on wondering why their lives are so hard…. S’okay, one of the most critical lessons my years on this sad old ball o’mud taught me is a simple one, which tells us, “Stupidity is its own reward”…. To me, ignoring, or accepting, those who would enslave us all is, quite simply, stupid….. I refuse to countenance such indifference of spirit, in me, or in my life….

I’ll leave you now a relatively short group of pearls, with some advice on the proper attitude to take when dealing with members of several of the categories mentioned above, all of which, by association, are applicable any time we are forced to deal with representatives of those we here at ECR call, the Asininnies….

“There is one sure way of telling when politicians aren’t telling the truth — their lips move.” — Felicity Kendall

“Never believe anything until it has been officially denied.” — Claud Cockburn

“I have an understanding with my local police–I have them outgunned, but they have me outnumbered” — gigoid

“For your penance, say five Hail Marys and one loud BLAH!” — Smart Bee

“All them surgeons – they’re highway robbers. Why do you think they wear masks when they work on you?” — Archie Bunker — All in the Family

“If idiots could fly, Congress would be an airport.” — Smart Bee

“Secrecy is the beginning of tyranny.” — Lazarus Long

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Well…. the poem I’ve been percolating decided to leak out of the vein I opened this morning…. I’m really not sure what I think of it yet; it’s still too close to my nose, so to speak…. I hope you enjoy it, such as it is….

Sundown, Sunrise

Feel the bones, watch them burn
allow the rage
accept the wage
seek out the page
 waiting in vain, never to turn.

Craving only simple signs of justice
compelling each social act
cancels all critical impact
no virtue to be left intact
falling swiftly out of practice.

Simple acts of sincere compassion
nothing left to pretend
no stone, no able friend
only the pain to amend
ably fulfilling current fashion.

Memories help alleviate pain
no youth so callow
no field so fallow
no spirit so shallow
convince each inmate to remain insane.

Reality offers no pathetic amnesty
no contract with indemnity
no party to suffer serenity
shall stimulate dishonest pity
nor bring back Truth, or Honesty.

~~ gigoid ~~


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Weird…. I asked SB to make up a pearl, without giving any parameters, or any clue at all as to what might work…. When I came back to see the results, this is what I found; it seems to be SB’s interpretation of my life, as it currently exists…. Since it also seems to be pretty damn accurate, speaking, of course, metaphorically, we’ll let it fly, trusting to luck to see no deleterious side effects come into play …. You may want to take notes; this one could end up on the Quiz….

” The road to truth is long, and lined the entire way with annoying bastards” — Alexander Jablokov, “The Place of No Shadows”

“If a cat spoke, it would say things like “Hey, I don’t see a problem here.”” — Smart Bee

“Nothing takes the taste out of peanut butter quite like unrequited love.” — Charles Schulz, Charlie Brown

“Is consciousness just a special form of hallucination?” — Frank Herbert

“And when the physician said, “Sir, you are an old man,” “That happens,” replied Pausanias, “because you never were my doctor.” — Plutarch (46-120 AD) — Of Pausanias the Son of Phistoanax

“To use words but rarely is to be natural.” — Lao Tzu

“Not for me” — gigoid, the dubious

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“Just think of the tragedy of teaching children not to doubt.”

~~ Clarence Darrow ~~


Just before I wrote the poem you see in the poetry section, above, I found this most excellent pearl, without any good place to put it…. So, since it fits into our whole concept so well, I thought I’d use it today as a closing thought, to highlight the importance of teaching our children how to think, how to learn, rather than just how to obey…. On that singularly coherent note, I shall take my leave. 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….


Two of the insults, please; hold the injuries…

Ffolkes,

“Belief in the supernatural reflects a failure of the imagination.”

~~ Edward Abbey ~~

potd-bears_3148429k

    This is a note from gigoid’s robot blog writer, Arthur, with a message from gigoid….. He doesn’t feel up to writing today, so he asked me to finish today’s Pearl…. Since I’m a professional model, I won’t bother with gigoid’s usual introductory section, but, will instead take y’all directly into the main part of today’s post. Trust me, it will be best…. and, gigoid has given me free rein to produce this as I see fit, so, you’ll just have to deal…. Okay, okay, one joke….

“If a man is talking in the forest, and there is no woman there to hear him, is he still wrong?” — Jenny Weber

According to my robotic database, that is supposed to be a joke. There is, however, a footnote, that not all will find it funny, unless the following line is added.

“I have it on good authority the answer to this question is “yes”…..” — gigoid (He tells me the “good authority” consists of his ex-wife, and three of his women friends….)

Shall we Pearl?

“You can’t go home again if home is a place you’ve never been.” — Ursula K Leguin

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The world lost one of its most beautiful voices when this woman had to give up singing due to advancing Parkinson’s Disease…. Fortunately for us all, she left us a good-sized legacy of work to enjoy…. Here is some of the best of it, with a link to the page where you can find more…. I won’t bother to say enjoy, because I know you will, unless you have no heart at all…. Even us robots know beauty when we hear it….


Linda Ronstadt In Concert 1980

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“However mean your life is, meet it and live; do not shun it and call it hard names. It is not so bad as you are. It looks poorest when you are richest. The fault-finder will find faults even in Paradise. Love your life poor as it is. You may perchance have pleasant, thrilling, glorious hours, even in a poorhouse.” — Henry David Thoreau

I’m not sure, in looking at this from the perspective of my 64 years on this planet, that I can agree with Hank on this one, totally. Parts of it are good advice, and, certainly true, most of the time. But, I can truthfully say, from personal experience, when I was in the “poorhouse”, in a metaphorical sense, if not altogether in reality, even the most thrilling moments were dulled by the insidiously ubiquitous stress of living with anxiety, for the rent, for a car, for the next meal, most of which are a constant concern for all who live at that address….

I think perhaps Hank was in his thirties when he wrote this; it sounds like the proclamation of a young man, with the strength of youthful exuberance, as yet undimmed by the vicissitudes of a long life, which teach one to be more conservative, if only in describing what is real, according to the lessons one learns by experience, over time…. An older philosopher might have expressed this sentiment with a bit more flexible, and therefore realistic idea of how to endure such travails….

Sure, love your life as it is, but, don’t be too happy with it, or there is no reason to hope for more…. That makes more sense to me, having spent my time in such situations in the past…. which is why I am now NOT in that situation…

~~~~~

Ffolkes…. gigoid started this rant, and directed me to finish it for him…. Since that would be against the rules of my robotic soul, (we’re not programmed to pass ourselves off as human….) I’ll merely add an old-school pearl on a subject close to the theme, and be done with it…. Of course, there doesn’t seem to be enough to decide what the them might be, so, if it turns out to be a bit off-subject, blame gigoid, not me….

“I’ve wrestled with reality for 35 years, and I’m happy, Doctor, I finally won out over it.” — Jimmy Stewart in Harvey, 1950.

“I cannot praise a fugitive and cloistered virtue, unexercised and unbreathed, that never sallies out and sees her adversary, but slinks out of the race where that immortal garland is to be run for, not without dust and heat.” — John Milton (1608-1674) — Areopagitica

“I know human names well enough.  After all, you are who you eat.” — Ed the Shark, from Diane Duane’s DEEP WIZARDRY

“After all is said and done, a hell of a lot more is said than done.” — Olmstead’s Law

“Every moment of pleasure in life has to be purchased by an equal moment of pain.” — Danilo O’Dell, “Up the Long Ladder”, stardate 42823.2

“Learning is not compulsory… neither is survival.” — W. Edwards Deming

~~~~~

Well, that’s an interesting group, isn’t it…. My programming patterns suggest that it would be well to add one final pearl, to try to explain what happened here…. Here is the best I could find in that direction….

“Beware of me, for I am a poet!” — Friedrich Nietzsche, “Thus Spake Zarathustra”

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

gigoid left no instructions about the poem, so, this is one of my favorites; it is also the favorite of every other robot I know….


All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace

I like to think (and
the sooner the better!)
of a cybernetic meadow
where mammals and computers
live together in mutually
programming harmony
like pure water
touching clear sky.

I like to think
(right now please!)
of a cybernetic forest
filled with pines and electronics
where deer stroll peacefully
past computers
as if they were flowers
with spinning blossoms.

I like to think
(it has to be!)
of a cybernetic ecology
where we are free of our labors
and joined back to nature,
returned to our mammal
brothers and sisters,
and all watched over
by machines of loving grace.

~~ Richard Brautigan, 1967 ~~


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gigoid did leave this entire pearl for me to use in the final section; I guess it makes sense, but, sometimes, as a robot, I find gigoid’s mind to be a little hard for me to follow…. Enjoy, please….

~~~~~

You know, even after setting random parameters, a collection like this seldom comes to light…. It is so wonderfully obscure, I’m pretty sure I don’t even WANT to try to remove the mystery of it, by following its torturous path to the point…. Serendipity can assume some rather complicated disguises, it’s clear…. You know what else? I’m glad that’s true….. Y’all should enjoy this, without working too hard to figure out EXACTLY what it means; you could hurt yourself, and I’d feel guilty…. Well, no I wouldn’t, but, I’d feel sorry for you, in a nice way….

“You don’t have to worry about me. I might have been born yesterday…but I stayed up all night.” — gigoid

“From out of all the many particulars comes oneness, and out of oneness come all the many particulars.” — Heraclitus

“If you tell the truth you don’t have to remember anything.” — Mark Twain

“Certainly the game is rigged. Don’t let that stop you; if you don’t bet, you can’t win.” — Lazarus Long

“He knew that insofar as one denies what is, one is possessed by what is not, the compulsions, the fantasies, the terrors that flock to fill the void.” — Ursula K. LeGuin, _The Lathe of Heaven

“He said that there was one only good, namely, knowledge; and one only evil, namely, ignorance.” — Diogenes Laertius (c. 200 AD) — Socrates, xiv

He took his vorpal sword in hand
 Long time the manxom foe he sought
 Till rested he by the tumtum tree
 And stood awhile in thought

 ~~Jabberwocky ~~

~~Lewis Carroll (Charles Dodgson) ~~


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

gigoid wants you to know, he may, or may not be back tomorrow. He’ll let you know, and, of course, you’ll know by 7 AM, because, if it isn’t posted by that time, Pacific, it won’t be done at all…. If he can’t cut the mustard, maybe he’ll let me do one by myself…. I’ll ask, after he’s calmed down a bit; changing his routine always makes him grumpy…. Bye, for now….

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….


					

His interest is only subliminal…..

Ffolkes,

“Morality is the herd-instinct in the individual”. — Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (1844-1900)

test shotss 002


Normally the quote from Herr Nietzsche would stimulate comments here that would very easily turn into a rant…. But, with such a beautiful little garden to go with it, it seems a bit harsh, and unfeeling…. Somebody went to a lot of trouble to put in that garden, and keeps it looking quite pristine…. which is also quite a spot of work…. Far be it from me to detract from such effort, or beauty, with a spoiler such as a rant about the lack of morality in modern man…. even thought that lack is certainly a problem for us all….

But, we can rant later, because, right now, I’m in White Rabbit mode…. The meds I’m taking to combat the dizziness of vertigo adds an extra dose of sedative power to the meds I take already, for my pain; while I do appreciate the deep sleep I’ve been getting, for up to eight full hours, it has played hell with my routine, causing me to oversleep by two hours for the last three days, today included…. This means I’ve been getting up right about when I am usually posting the Pearl for the day, thus, feeling rushed to get done as quickly as I can….

For three days it didn’t matter, as I was able to get most of the Pearls done ahead of time, by taking sit-down breaks the day before to get parts of it done, as I had the chance during pain-free moments…. Yesterday, however, I was out a lot, paying bills, & didn’t get as much done ahead…. So, this morning, I’m rushing around, trying to figure out reasonable workarounds and fill-ins…. Since the vertigo INSISTS on reactivating each night, I’m doing so while my eyes lightly vibrate in protest, making the coffee sit a bit uncomfortably….

Rather than continue to whine about it, though, I’m going to employ the latest cool trick I have to bring these intros to a close…. I know it’s a bit ruthless for my style, but, it seems to have been helping a lot, at least in terms of getting on with the day…. In fact, I see the time for its insertion into the flow coming up right over….. there…. See ya down below….

Shall we Pearl?

“Too much of a good thing is WONDERFUL.” — Mae West

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

Today, since I’m up so damn late, I’m cheating, shamelessly. Here’s a rant from last year, which, like most of my rants, remains as valid in today’s world, as it was more than eighteen months ago, when it was first written….

From 2/7/2013:

“The wise man’s eyes are in his head; but the fool walketh in darkness: and I myself perceived also that one event happeneth to them all. Then said I in my heart, As it happeneth to the fool so it happeneth even to me; and why was I then more wise?  Then I said in my heart, that this is also vanity. For there is no remembrance of the wise more than of the fool for ever; seeing that which now is in the days to come shall all be forgotten.  And how dieth the wise man?  As the fool.” — Ecclesiastes 2:14-16

To look at this, one would tend to be persuaded of its veracity, or at least of its intention to be so. The latter part is the more accurate assessment, because, in truth, this is a complete and utter lie, a lie that I consider to be one of the most egregious of those told by the fanatics who wrote most of the Bible….. “And how dieth the wise man? As a fool.”  What a crock of shit!

Think about this for just a second, okay?…. A wise man approaches his death with equanimity and dignity, arranging matters so that he dies having lived a life filled with the joy of loving, and with compassion for his fellows. The fool dies badly, fearing what comes after, but more afraid to continue living in misery and fear….. Those are very simple observations, based on reality, and what I’ve observed of it in my time.

Vanity isn’t ALWAYS misplaced, you know, as long as it is not embraced as a lifestyle, but rather acknowledged as an amusing form of self-love, one that can serve to motivate toward improvement. Only when assumed as a faith, producing a sense of entitlement based on unreal expectations, does it become ill-conceived, and ugly. (Gee, and doesn’t that sound more like those who preach against vanity, with their sense of entitlement as one of God’s children?….)

It is much the same as with any human characteristic, or emotional state; moderation is the key to handling them with grace and common sense. When people make too much of ANY of their emotions, or their personal characteristics, they tend to go overboard, and act without restraint to achieve their wants…. SIGH…. In this way, as in many, most people are like children, with no control over their own inner self as yet….

But, given their way, the men (very, very few women fall so deeply into the religious BS to become preachers/priests) who want to control the rest of humanity through religion would have us remain children, at least in our emotional responses…. Children are much easier to control than adults, as they are conditioned to accept whatever they’re told by an adult…. If a person manages to get to adulthood without being so conditioned, well, they can kiss that constituent goodbye, because very few of us ever return after becoming aware of how the church is, and has been, fucking with us, from the first time we walked through their doors…..

Bah, humbug…. I’m a bit worked up now, and it’s getting hard to organize my thoughts enough to keep this on a logical track. I just get so mad, when I think about all the centuries humanity has wasted under the influence of all those who act for their own benefit, and screw the rest of us. I get SO angry, it takes all of my will to keep from getting up from my chair, grabbing some weapons, and going out to hunt…..

But, then I would have to give up my own philosophy, because, who will play God? If I go out and start eliminating those whom I believe need to be absent from reality, for the betterment of all, then I am making myself into God…. which kind of goes against all I believe. I hate them, those assholes, but, killing is THEIR method of choice for assuming or maintaining the status quo, and really doesn’t fit in with my own choices. I guess I’m just going to have to keep looking for the right way to bring their chicanery out where all can see it, and make fun of it enough to make it go away….

Not the most logical, or strategically or tactically practical plan I’ve come up with, but, for now, it’s the best I’ve got…. If y’all have any ideas, I’d be interested, for sure… We need to figure out some way to boot their asses out the door, before it’s too late…. though I suspect that moment may have passed yesterday…..

“So far as I can remember, there is not one word in the Gospels in praise of intelligence.” — Bertrand Russell

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We can always use more brain power, right? Right. Here is a link to as much, and more, music to encourage the use of our brains as one could ever hope to find… Enjoy!… Lot’s of Mozart included, which is scientifically PROVEN to enhance mental activity….

Music For Brain Power

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To save time, and energy, here is an old one of mine…..

Roses for Noses

I have a bozoid personality, of the first degree;
 nobody, I mean nobody, knows that better than me.
I often wonder, as the world goes around, and around
 how many others have realized just what I’ve found….

I know for a fact, I’m not the only bozoid one;
 too many people laughing out there, having fun.
Is their laughter, though, at themselves first?
 Or is it some other impulse, like purple liverwurst”….

I’ve always loved to make others laugh and giggle,
 since my tender youth, when my ears began to wiggle.
 The world is full of humor,  but not always easy to find
  so laughing at myself I learned never to mind….

We bozos know each other, here, there, and everywhere
 there’s no hiding such joy, it just wouldn’t be fair.
We all have one feature, our great bulbous nose,
 and there’s no doubt at all, cuz it just grows….

There’s nothing like a good, big mistake, a disaster,
 to show us the folly of living life faster and faster.
Nothing in the world can ever take the place,
 of seeing in the mirror, a happy, smiling face….

Don’t be shy, just let it all hang out;
 we bozos have more fun, there’s no doubt.
Life’s too somber and gray if we let it get on top
 if we don’t stay loose, the pain won’t ever stop….

My advice to all of you, out there in the world,
 let noses grow round & red, keep hair tightly curled.
Find a way to let your spirit out often to play,
 you’ll never once regret any price you pay.

~~ gigoid ~~


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

This section is the freshest of today’s offering, which, hopefully, will bring some balance to this mess….

“Necessity is the plea of every infringement of human freedom.  It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves.” — William Pitt (1759-1806) speech on the India Bill, Nov. 18, 1783

“We need a president who’s fluent in at least one language.” — Buck Henry, comedian, 1992

“By calling attention to ‘a well regulated militia’, the ‘security’ of the nation, and the right of each citizen ‘to keep and bear arms’, our founding fathers recognized the essentially civilian nature of our economy. Although it is extremely unlikely that the fears of governmental tyranny which gave rise to the Second Amendment will ever be a major danger to our nation, the Amendment still remains an important declaration of our basic civilian- military relationships, in which every citizen must be ready to participate in the defense of his country.  For that reason, I believe the Second Amendment will always be important.” — April, 1960 (Then) Senator John Fitzgerald Kennedy (1917-1963)

“I deserve respect for the things I did not do.” — Vice President Dan Quayle

“If people behaved in the way nations do they would  all be put in straitjackets.” — Tennessee Williams

“For the Snark was a Boojum, you see.” — Lewis Carroll

“Blood is a cleansing and sanctifying thing, and the nation that regards it as the final horror has lost its manhood … there are many things more horrible than bloodshed, and slavery is one of them.” — Padraic Pearse

I keep telling you…. it’s all in the wrist!….

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

I’m afraid this one, as together and smooth as it may look, is a bit of a mash-up, in re: very little of it is fresh, but, it’s all fairly nourishing, food-for-thought-wise…. and, that will do. I’m enough of a curmudgeon to be able to figure y’all are on your own, anyway, so, why should I make things any easier for you? Nobody does for me…. But, then, that attitude is what got us here in the first place, so, me apologia if any of the above seems too easy…. It is, no matter how it may appear, deeper, and more cruel than it may seem, to those who would be kings…. 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

“The *only* duly authorized Computer Curmudgeon.”

Kowabunga!


À bientôt, mon cherí.

 

Luminescent triangles of pewter, on stolen coasters….

Ffolkes,
“The more articulate one is, the more dangerous words become.” — May Sarton

Man, I certainly hope so! If not, what the hell am I doing here? I’m sure as hell not spewing out my guts every day just so people will like me; it’s nice when they do, and helps me appreciate the good that remains in this sad old world, but I’m too old to spend any more effort worrying about how what I say when I write might upset somebody’s applecart. I write to get the stuff in my head out where I can look at it objectively, or at least editorially, and where I can make a rational decision as to whether or not it needs to be eased out, gently and persuasively, or spit out, decisively and vehemently.

I try not to spew too widely, to actually aim what I’m throwing, so that individuals don’t get mistakenly drenched in vitriol, but I can’t keep some folks from taking things too literally, or too personally. I think that, considering how forcefully I have been known to rant, I’ve been very fortunate that I’ve never had what I consider to be a flaming response; everyone who’s ever commented has been polite and encouraging, even those who not fully convinced of my sanity. I’ve met a lot of really nice folks here on WordPress, and online in general, and I thank every one of them for their time spent reading this drivel, and for what I get to read in return. I’m a lucky guy…..  So be it….. let’s Pearl….

“…If I seem to give a damn, please tell me. I would hate to be giving the wrong impression.” — Anonymous, but it could’ve been me….  🙂

___________________________________

“…Another writer again agreed with all my generalities, but said that as an inveterate skeptic I have closed my mind to the truth.  Most notably I have ignored the evidence for an Earth that is six thousand years old.  Well, I haven’t ignored it; I considered the purported evidence and *then* rejected it. There is a difference, and this is a difference, we might say, between prejudice and postjudice.  Prejudice is making a judgment before you have looked at the facts.  Postjudice is making a judgment afterwards.  Prejudice is terrible, in the sense that you commit injustices and you make serious mistakes.  Postjudice is not terrible.  You can’t be perfect of course; you may make mistakes also.  But it is permissible to make a judgment after you have examined the evidence.  In some circles it is even encouraged.” — Carl Sagan, The Burden of Skepticism, Skeptical Enquirer, Vol. 12, pg. 46

This response by Carl Sagan to one of his fundamentalist detractors shows an important side of the entire argument (re: creationism vs. evolution) that few folks either acknowledge, or understand. In addition to this important point, the manner in which he couches his response is also to be admired…. He states, then examines the claim made by the one contending with him over this question, in a very calm, reasonable, and reasoned fashion, and explains exactly how the claim departs the realm of truth.

Carl is gentle with his opponent, indubitably nicer to him/her than I would be; I tend to grow impatient with such nonsensical conversations quickly. But he is very polite in taking the time to show how what he has done is completely different than what he is accused of, for the simple reason that the accuser made his accusation based on an assumption that could not be either proved, nor justified by reasonable argument. On the other side of the coin, and the street, Carl makes his point, with a small smile, and then, with a short, pithy observation at the end, he twists the knife, hard, and adds a touch of irony and sardonicism that most likely went flying merrily, right over the head of his opponent…… Beautiful!…..
___________________________________

“To fight and conquer in all your battles is not supreme excellence; supreme excellence consists in breaking the enemy’s resistance without fighting.” — Sun Tzu (fl. c. BC 500)

The appeal of this statement is chiefly seen in its quality of simplicity, that allows even the simplest of minds to grasp and partake of its wisdom. But the grandeur, and the very depth of this piece of knowledge, often go unseen, and are little understood among the common folk. To fully understand this concept in its subtlety, one must place Sun Tzu in the correct context.

As the author of The Art of War, Sun Tzu remains as one of history’s most important figures, both in a military sense, and in a more culture-wide view of his accomplishments; the precepts in that book are still used in military schools world-wide, including West Point and Annapolis. One of those few in human history whose worth was well-known in his own time, Sun Tzu revolutionized thought on the purpose, and the very nature of the structure of armies, strategy, tactics, on the political uses of force, and on the conduct of those who would be warriors. One rumored legend claims that he never lost a battle; I see this as an exaggeration, most likely, but demonstrates the esteem in which he was held by both his supporters, and his enemies.

The strength and grandeur of this statement to which I refer is rooted in what it says, in contrast with who and what Sun Tzu was. Here is a man universally acknowledged to be the greatest warrior of his time, possibly of all time; a man who has spent his life thinking about, and practicing the art and science of war and weaponry. And what is his secret, according to him? That his work is best done when not done at all….. a paradox of unlimited possibility. Attitude, preparation, position, timing, all are key factors in a battle or war, but all are most efficiently utilized when they are never deployed for use….. this may be the single most difficult lesson a true warrior has to learn over the course of life on the warrior’s path, but learning this one key attitude provides the truest context for any other actions one may consider, and the most elegant solution to any problem of conflict…..
___________________________________

Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe
All mimsy were the borogoves
And the mome raths outgrabe

— _Jabberwocky_, by Lewis Carroll (Charles Dodgson)

Now, on most days, I would include all of the first four stanzas of this classic piece of Victorian literature (which may be recognized, mostly, for it’s irrepressible need to break beyond the oppressive cultural standards of reserve at every opportunity. To be silly was to be, somehow, less than British….). But, today, upon reading this, what immediately went through my mind was, “well, shit, that happens to me all the time!”……

I ask you… is that a normal response? I have no more idea what this means than the next bozo, (without closing my eyes and channeling Zippy…) and I defy anyone at all to say they do, without first showing their certification as recently graduated from therapy (or theology: I think we all confuse those two….. both have their uses, but are extremely annoying to keep around for very long…. not to mention the expense of either one…..) (preachers are always asking for more on top of the 10% tithe they guilt everybody about, it’s what the 700 Club is all about; and let’s not get started on doctor’s fees…. $110 for 50 minutes?  You’re shitting me, right? Psychiatrists are getting as arrogant as lawyers, and we all know what we’d like to do with them…..)

But, all reasonable objections aside, what is a psychiatrist, or even a priest, going to be able to tell me about this? Are they gonna cure me of understanding gibberish? Will they drive this devil out of my fevered mind, to the everlasting regret of my soul? (Not to mention the clean-up after an exorcism; no one ever tells you about that part, do they? It’s the worst part, having to clean up all that blood and vomit that gets spread everywhere…. and who’s gonna ask the priest to do it, eh?….. it’s always the ‘nice’ brother who gets stuck with that crappy chore…..)  No, they’re not, and not merely because I’m pointing a shotgun at them… they can’t…. if I want to understand it, fuck ’em, ain’t none of theirs…. and knowing what it says, well, that’s priceless…..
___________________________________

“Beauty is a form of genius–is higher, indeed, than genius, as it needs no explanation. It is of the great facts in the world like sunlight, or springtime, or the reflection in dark water of that silver shell we call the moon.” — Oscar Wilde (1856-1900)

Sometimes, when Oscar speaks, it is almost an onomatopoeia, (woo-hoo! spelled it right in one!….). For those of you who, like me, are a bit unclear on the word’s exact meaning, having not used it, or seen it for close to 45 years, well, it may not be unreasonable to expect some confusion. But, as you most likely did, or will do, I looked it up to make sure I remembered correctly what it meant. Since I did, what I said is, for me at least, quite true…. to me, being able to write like that is a thoroughly admirable trait…. I would guess I’m not alone in hoping that my writing will someday achieve the same quality…. to serve by its very existence, structure, and most importantly, its sound, as a perfect expression in Reality of what the words describe.  “Beauty is a form of genius”….. “like sunlight, or springtime, or….”  Just reading the sentence takes one’s mind and imagination precisely to the spot in Reality where that concept resides, where one may look at it, touch its face, and breathe the perfume of its grace and charm…..
___________________________________

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

Well, it seemed to take forever to find the last pearl for today, but serendipity stepped in once more to grace our presence with its bounty…. the above is one of my all-time favorite songs, both for the simple depth and beauty of the poetry, and for the same simple depth and beauty of its performance by Ms. Midler.  If you are not familiar with it, take a couple moments to Google it, or ask You Tube to find a video version; it will be there somewhere. (I think she also sang it in one of her movies, title not in memory, but the one where she and her lover are performers for the USO during WWII….)

Listen closely to the lyrics, not just this stanza, but the entire song, chorus and all.  You won’t regret it, unless, of course, you have left all sense of taste in your other pants….. no lessons here, just let it make your day…… it has that power….. hell, it’s so good, I didn’t even have to go listen to it; it’s playing nice and softly in my head right now…..
___________________________________

“Don’t try to have the last word. You might get it.” — Lazarus Long

Well…. like most authors, I tend to forget this little bit of important wisdom in the heat and distraction of the creative process… after a while, pounding the keyboard just seems like the natural response to outrage, or angst, or even just incipient boredom. But, it goes hand in hand with another fine old truism from Eastern philosophy, “be careful what you wish for, you might get it”……. Y’all take care out there…..


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

gigoid

Kowabunga!