Distant signs of wonder….

Ffolkes,

“All nature is but art unknown to thee.”

~~ Alexander Pope ~~

morning glory

Peeking Beauty….

Hajime…. Today’s post is a testament to the power of either my sense of duty, or, OCD take your pick. Having mentioned in yesterday’s re-blog I would post today, I am caught, by my own rather compelling need to live up to my words. I’m not particularly interested in knowing wherefrom the impulse may have arisen, but, there ’tis, in all its intense glory. So, I’ve cobbled this Pearl together, almost literally out of thin air, in order to live up to my statement, ill-advised though it may have been. I’m a Bozo, to be sure, but, an honest Bozo, and can be trusted to live up to my own word, if naught else. Sarge wouldn’t like it if I didn’t….

Life of late has been full; it’s strange, in many ways, to experience the aging process while my mind still feels young & strong. In many ways, getting old resembles the experience of being young, for I am continually learning new paradigms under which I must live, if I am to live with any elegance (a deliberately chosen word, I would add; I decided long ago Life should be approached as if we were creating a fine work of art, to embody the grace we seek to include in our living, to match the implacable grandeur so amply displayed by Nature and the Universe…..). Achieving any significant degree of such elegance, I find, becomes not harder, but, more involved & complex, as we grow older. We know HOW to do most things, but, in ways that assume a certain degree of physical capability no longer available to our aging bodies; our task thus becomes the process of learning HOW all over again….

I suppose that all sounds a bit convoluted, but, it is nonetheless the case. Rather than spend any more time trying to explain the Why of it, I’ll just get on with the show, just as if it made any difference in the overall scheme of things. Besides, the weather today is looking rather fine, & the wide world is calling me to take my camera, & go find some beauty to record, so it can be shared. It’s not a grand plan, but, ’tis my own; this process, though still necessary, has become a secondary impulse, with the need to go walkabout assuming a primary importance, no less compelling than my need to maintain sanity. It’s all relative, ain’t it? On that true, if obscure note, I think I’ll flip this switch over here, which will take us abruptly to where we need to be….

Shall we Pearl?….

“Experience is not what happens to you.
It is what you do with what happens to you.”

~~ Aldous Huxley, in “Reader’s Digest”, 1956 ~~

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playing-for-change

This weekend, specifically yesterday, was/is the yearly Playing For Change Day, during which musicians all over the world gather at street corners, in large venues, such as festivals, to play & sing for peace throughout the world. I hope y’all will consider taking part, as well as consider contributing to the cause, which helps children and communities in many countries come together to learn to play & sing, and to work together as people do best to make change in the world…. I hope you enjoy today’s selection, and that you enjoy taking part in humanity’s saving grace…. making music….

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Playing For Change
Redemption Song

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Comedy_Tragedy

Back in 2012, I had just applied to SS for my benefits, but, was still living in relative poverty until it arrived, with no chance or hope of being able to travel further than the nearest grocery store on payday. But, I dreamed of it all the time, particularly of going to Ireland, where I’ve been called ever since a child. I made it, eventually, and have been there twice now, with plans to go back as soon as I can figure it out. This poem explains my urges in this respect quite well, if with a bit of mild corn…. I hope you enjoy it….

Days and Nights of Eire

Comforting, a dream creeps oft into my mind
On the elven hills of Eire lives the vision I find.
Elegant, gracious, everlastingly draped in beauty
Just payment of simple homage lives as joyous duty.

Fairies and druids walk abroad in ghostly parade
Gracing each hearth with its own welcoming shade.
Castles and heroes yet live in tale and song
Proving love for the land in each heart strong.

From cold of winter into glorious young spring
Brown, and gray, to emerald green songs to sing
Soft rains always follow winter’s great tempest
Eire dons its emerald coat from east to west.

Old and strong, connections call out in dreams
Nothing that was known remains as it seems.
Immersion in ancient runes and battle hymns
Offering sanity in place of grievous whims.

Time and place can tell a much different tale
Judgment should never be a final sale.
Yet something solid and real calls me to go see
Where dreams of loving beauty may actually be….

~~ gigoid ~~

11/3/2012

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pearls_3

Naked Pearls

“I find your faith in reality rather amusing….”

*********

“If you really knew me,
you would know that all your assumptions are wrong.”

~~ Ann Muir Thomas ~~

*********

“Do good by stealth, and blush to find it fame.”

~~ Alexander Pope — Epilogue to the Satires, Dialogue i, Line 136 ~~

*********

“Live as if you were to die tomorrow.
Learn as if you were to live forever.”

~~ Mohandas K. Gandhi ~~

*********

“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 ~~

*********

“Dignity does not consist in possessing honors, but in deserving them.”

~~ Aristotle (384-322BC) ~~

*********

“It is impossible for a man to be cheated by anyone but himself.”

~~ Ralph Waldo Emerson ~~

*********

“Look back on time with kindly eyes,
He doubtless did his best;
How softly sinks his trembling son
In human nature’s west!”

~~ Emily Dickinson ~~

*********

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

~~ Lewis Carroll ~~

*********

“All I kin say is
when you finds yo’self wanderin’ in a peach orchard,
ya don’t go lookin’ for rutabagas.”

~~ Kingfish ~~

*********

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Well, ffolkes, there you have it. I’ll be back in a day or two, hopefully having finished the half-done poem still in the process of leaking out of my head. If it continues to dribble, I’ll think of something. In the meantime, I suggest y’all be all you can be, even if you’ve never been in the army. Probably better if you haven’t, I should think, though no more or less of a lesson. In any case, I’m outta here, and so are you. Be well, & be happy as you may….

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

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

Which is Why….

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

gigoid, the dubious

The *only* duly authorized Computer Curmudgeon.

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

dozer3

À bientôt, mon cherí….


			

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

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“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 ~~

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

~~ Walt Kelly, Putluck Pogo ~~

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“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 ~~

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

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

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“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_ ~~

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

~~ Pablo Picasso ~~

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“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….


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

Penitent barbers are strangely silent on Wednesdays….

Ffolkes,

This period of my life is turning out to be quite interesting, in the classical, positive sense, not the oriental, dangerous sense. Since moving into a larger house with Patricia, I find myself having to make adjustments again, in order to establish routines that are acceptable to someone else, as well as learning tot live with the idiosyncrasies someone else possesses .

Both of us have lived alone for years, and it seems natural there might be some areas of friction that will surface to disturb the generally placid waters of our relationship. I have expected them, but, for the most part, the entire issue seems to not be the problem that I anticipated. Pat, bless her, is an unusual women in many ways, for which I thank my lucky stars….

Any who, long story short, it’s been easier than I had thought it would be, and I can only be thankful, as I ….. well, both of us are too old to put up with a lot of struggle and hardship, so, it’s a good thing that everything has gone fairly smoothly with the move. It is now one week since we moved in, and we have all but two boxes unpacked, a washer and dryer are installed, the new bed is in place, and the cat is in heat ( oh, joy….). We have established the rules in the kitchen and bath room, and are learning to put up with each other being in the other’s pocket all day; in general, I’d say we’re doing it pretty well…. I’m content, and she says she is happy, so, I’m happy…..

Now that I am becoming so settled, I don’t know how it will affect my curmudgeon status. Pat seems to not mind it sometimes, but, other times it seems not to go over so well, so, that may be a factor in the future…. we’ll see. I have certain rules that MUST be obeyed when it comes to my membership in that group, else the codicils and amendments will kick in, and nobody wants to see that. It’s supposed to be quite a bloody process, and best avoided, if at all possible.

So, we’ll see…. It would be a shame to have to balance that kind of issue for long, so, I’m hoping it fizzles out, and causes no further problems….. I’m a grump, but, she doesn’t seem to mind, as she is as close to a female curmudgeon, naturally, without any training, as anyone I’ve ever met…. It’s kind of cute, actually….

(Just in case it isn’t clear, all of the above two paragraphs are fictional material, included for the purpose of mild hilarity, and nothing else…. I know, it didn’t quite get there, but, hey, the effort counts, right?…..)

Such issues aside, the move went well, if a bit expensively, which was purely by choice, due to age related conditions that made me not want to actually DO any of the move myself. In addition, it was turning into a stressful issue for Patricia, and I wanted to eliminate that from our lives, so, I threw some money I had laying around at it, which solved the issue nicely. Neither of us had to work hard at all, until it came to unpacking and putting it away, so all is good, and I am content in our new place…. Maybe that will also have an effect on what I write…. one never knows, do one?….. I suppose we’ll just have to wait and see…. But, we won’t wait long, for it begins…. now…..

Shall we Pearl?…..

“When you want to test the depths of a stream, don’t use both feet.” — Chinese Proverb
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I love mornings like this, when the words are flowing easily, and Smart Bee is actively helping me in what I’m doing, rather than going off on its own little excursions through the space and time, as it sometimes will do. Today, I started collecting these pearls, with the intended direction being a bit unclear…. but, within moments, SB had supplied me with the following seven gems, which, together, make a nice little critical description of modern society, and the human condition at large…. Well, that’s what I see, anyway…. Y’all can make your own decisions on that…..

“Think of doubt as an invitation to think.’ — Smart Bee

“A generation which ignores history has no past and no future.” — Robert Heinlein, The Notebooks of Lazarus Long

“Independence? That’s middle class blasphemy. We are all dependent on one another, every soul of us on earth.” — George Bernard Shaw

Between those who use their neighbors, and those who use a cane.
Between those in constant power, and those in constant pain.
Between those who run to evil, and those who cannot run.
Tell me which ones are the cripples, and which ones touch the sun.

— Ceili’s Muse “What you do with what you’ve got”

“A kind of excellent dumb discourse.” — William Shakespeare (1564-1616), The Tempest — Act iii, Sc. 3

“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

“I had a lease on an OEDIPUS COMPLEX back in ’81…” — Zippy the Pinhead
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It has been quite a while since I perused Walt Whitman’s work…. and, as with every time I do, I wonder why it took me so long…. Here is a good one, one of many by this true paragon of American poetry….

A Noiseless Patient Spider

A noiseless, patient spider,     
I mark’d, where, on a little promontory, it stood, isolated;     
Mark’d how, to explore the vacant, vast surrounding,     
It launch’d forth filament, filament, filament, out of itself;     
Ever unreeling them — ever tirelessly speeding them.     

And you, O my Soul, where you stand,     
Surrounded, surrounded, in measureless oceans of space,     
Ceaselessly musing, venturing, throwing,— seeking the spheres, to connect them;     
Till the bridge you will need, be form’d — till the ductile anchor hold;     
Till the gossamer thread you fling, catch somewhere, O my Soul.

~~ Walt Whitman ~~

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http://www.sfgate.com/politics/article/Feinstein-Boxer-buck-constituents-on-Syria-strike-4793945.php

“Failure to respond would give license to Syrian President Bashar Assad to use chemical weapons again, encourage nuclear-armed North Korea and make it more likely that chemical weapons might be used against the United States or its allies, including Israel,” she said.

“How many of us have been … where we see thousands of our troops standing … just a stone’s throw away from North Korea?” Boxer said. “Iran will view us as a paper tiger, when it comes to their nuclear program, and that is dangerous not only for us and our friends but for the world.”

I find these statements to be reprehensible, though they do serve as perfect examples of how the BRC typically distracts and lies to the public in order to do exactly what they want, in spite of what the public may want. For example, we are talking about the Middle East, and Syria, yet she is compelled to add in the specter of the public’s most dangerous nightmare leader of North Korea, and then mention nuclear weapons, though that, too, is an entirely different subject….. They true purpose is to have the public connect those words in their minds, so that whenever they are mentioned, the proper emotional response is created….

Then, she throws in the “Iran will view us as a paper tiger” nonsense….. So fucking what? Are we children, that calling us names will make us respond to such childishness with lethal weaponry? First, who gives a fuck WHAT the Iranians think about us? My ego is strong enough to withstand the meaningless mouthings of ignorant people….. Second, if we end up bombing Syria over this, for the stated purpose of not appearing weak in the eyes of people who already view us with suspicion, if not outright hostility, then the rest of the world will know for sure that we cannot be trusted to do anything other than bomb the fuck out of whomever crosses our path….. They won’t CARE whether or not we are a paper tiger, or an out-of-control behemoth that is killing everyone else because of the sickness in our own society….

Obama, the Senate, and the Congress, all are aware of the overwhelming public opinion that we have no business acting unilaterally in Syria; the public has made this perfectly clear in the weeks since the issue arose. Current polls are showing about 60%, or more, of those polled as being against any unilateral response, though everyone feels that an international response is called for, by the UN, or NATO.

But, the general run of American has no wish to get involved in yet another illegal war, just to keep the politicians in Washington from losing face…. To my mind, they have no face left, anyway, and anything they do to act in Syria, as being planned, is NOT going to improve that; it will only make the situation worse, and cause yet another mass of people to hate us, with good reason….

Yes,  Bashar Assad is an asshole, and, if, as it appears, he is guilty of gassing his own people, he deserves to be removed from his position, taken into the streets, and shot. End of story. But, the people he orders to do his evil deeds will still be there, along with, most likely, tens of thousands of dead innocents, the notorious “acceptable numbers” of “collateral damage”, (otherwise known as “dead people”, mind you…), of our bombings to come, all of whose surviving relatives will now consider the US to be even more of an enemy than previously, and certainly more of a threat than their own idiots.

If nothing else, they will see us as the same kind of threat they endure from their own leaders, or worse, because they don’t know us at all; we are just the white devils who bomb them to hell and gone, and don’t even speak their language…. There is no sane response to this issue, other than for the entire world community to act in concert, to deliver the message that this kind of thing won’t be tolerated in society….

But, until our politicians can tell me, with a straight face, and truthfully, that there are no drones sitting on American airfields, ready and able to deliver the SAME substance to OUR population, or that they are NOT spying on their own people in their insane rush to gather ALL the information in the world, I don’t think I’ll be trusting them with much of anything to do with ME or my safety and well-being… Those two issues are not in their interests, and they don’t even consider them in making their plans.  I can see no evidence that they have they ever considered the safety and well-being of the public of any great importance, in relation to whatever they wish to do themselves. It just doesn’t figure into their calculations, ffolkes, and if y’all are entertaining any notion that it does, well, you are wearing blinders, and refusing to see what is staring you in the face…..

The politicians in charge of this country make a lot of noise, telling us they are working hard on our behalf, but, everything I see them actually DO has nothing at all to do with me, or what I want. It only serves their own purposes, and the hell with the constituency….

Boxer, and Pelosi, and Feinstein talk a good game, most of the time, and have always been considered to be representative of the liberal agenda, but, as is now clear, when push comes to shove, they are on the side of the politicians, not the people, and will do whatever they have to do to maintain their own position, no matter what the consequences are for the rest of us….

I could rant all day about this one, but, I don’t want to bore anyone further than I probably already have done…. So, I’ll end this here, with my usual warning…. The BRC is lying to you, to me, to all of us, ffolkes, on a daily basis, about just about everything. Unless WE change it, it ain’t gonna change…..

So, it seems clear to me that we all may as well bend over and kiss our asses goodbye in the relatively near future, because the chances of people acting in concert in a rational way doesn’t have a very good track record…. For that matter, I can’t recall it EVER happening…. Ah well, that’s the breaks, I guess…

“I once wanted to save the world. Now I just want to leave the room with dignity.” — Lotus Weinstock
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Sometimes, SB is just better than other times; today is one of those better days…. The ending pearl for the rant in part 3 is perfect; it couldn’t have expressed my feelings and thoughts any better at all…. Okay, let’s see what the damage comes to….

If I’d been fully awake and aware, this might be better, but, it’s not, (worse, that is….), and I’m not, (fully awake and aware…), so, I am persuaded to let it go out as is….. Though I don’t actually care from an ego standpoint, I do hope more than just a few ffolkes read today’s rant, and pass it along, and discuss it to death with their friends…. That is the only way we have a chance to affect what happens, minuscule though that chance may be….

This issue in Syria is a very volatile one, with the potential to become much larger than the arena it occupies, pulling in the whole world. I can only hope that it doesn’t lead to the FINAL confrontation that is surely not far away…. As much as I am prepared for that eventuality, I’m not ready to deal with an endgame scenario right now…. I just got moved, and would like at least a short time of contentment with my lady before it all goes to hell….

Ah well, such is life… All we can do is all we can do, and, for the moment, I’ve done all I can…. See ya…..

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest  Carole…
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?…..
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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….
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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 ~~

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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….
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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…. (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
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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)
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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

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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…..
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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
__________________________________

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?
__________________________________

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
__________________________________

“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
__________________________________

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!