Reason to be aloof….

Ffolkes,

“Everything in excess!
To enjoy the flavor of life, take big bites.
Moderation is for monks.”

~~ Lazarus Long, from Robert A. Heinlein’s “Time Enough For Love” ~~

ketchikan early

Ketchikan, Alaska, before the invasion….

Hajime…. In my experience, the most difficult part of the continued presence of PTSD in my life is what occurred yesterday. I call it SOD, or, sudden onset depression, a euphemistic acronym, which makes it sound all official and clean, when, in truth, it’s a dirty fucking mess. I’ll be cruising along, & will see, or hear, or experience some sort of stimulus, the nature of which is always unclear before it shows itself. This time, I saw a picture/story on FB, about an abused animal, & before I knew it, tears were flowing down my cheeks, and my mood plummeted into the depths….

Not a happy time, especially since it coincided with the onset of some pretty heavy pain. Go figure, eh? Murphy had a field day with me yesterday; he’ll be gloating for months. And I? I have spent the last 24 or so hours in a deep funk, fighting my way toward some light, only to find myself still grumpy and feeling mean today. Leelu and I are at odds, and I can’t find it in me to bring myself to any sort of quiet, safe harbor, where I could at least look for my center, with some hope of finding it. I tell ya, ffolkes; this ain’t no fun….

I did write a poem while in the throes of misery; I can’t say how it will seem, but, it sure is an accurate description of how I felt at the time, so, we’ll let it stay, & call it confession, which, they say, is good for the soul. I’ll have to take their word for it, as confession has always seemed like a cop-out to me, a way to avoid taking responsibility. But, that’s just me, and, if it helps get this done today, I’ll take it.

I’ll help myself, too, I guess, by ceasing this litany of woe, in favor of getting on with today’s mess. It’s a typical Pearl, but, with some rather ‘different’ material with which to contend; I’d suggest an adult beverage, or good strong coffee, preferably Irish, at minimum. The rest of y’all should think about insurance. Me, I’m going to just get on with this, so, I can go to my room and pout…. Let’s get it done….

Shall we Pearl?….

He said, “Dance for me” and he said,
“You are too beautiful for the wind
To pick at, or the sun to burn.” He said,
“I’m a poor tattered thing, but not unkind
To the sad dancer and the dancing dead.”

~~ Sidney Keyes, “Four Postures of Death” ~~

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PHOTO-Asleep_At_The_Wheel-WEB

Damn! That’s one big cowboy!

Image from http://www.midstatefair.com via Google Images

After my dad retired from the US Army, we moved to a small town in central California, where raising cattle, and/or, growing alfalfa to feed cattle, were the primary industries. As might be imagined, they listened to a lot of country & western music. I spent much of my teen years at dances where the mix of music ran from the Doors, to the Stones, to the Beatles, and, to this band, who have long been an iconic western swing band. It’s straight out, down-home Texas style swing, ffolkes. Lots of twang, but some of the best dancing music to be found… The picture sucks, but the sound’s pretty good….. Enjoy!….

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Asleep At The Wheel

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https://youtu.be/CziPAbs3ROY

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“Six mistakes mankind keeps making century after century:
Believing that personal gain is made by crushing others;
Worrying about things that cannot be changed or corrected;
Insisting that a thing is impossible because we cannot accomplish it;
Refusing to set aside trivial preferences;
Neglecting development and refinement of the mind;
Attempting to compel others to believe and live as we do.”

~~ Cicero ~~

We the People...

“A power has risen up in the government greater than the people themselves, consisting of many and various and powerful interests, combined into one mass, and held together by the cohesive power of the vast surplus in the banks.” — Johann L. Uhland (1787-1862) — Speech, May 27, 1836

For several days now, I’ve been saving this quote for a rant. Naturally, the intended targets are those assholes who have managed to establish a world-wide oligarchy, which is busy destroying the world as we know it, in complete ignorance of anything that doesn’t serve their narcissism. While pondering the issue, I was brought down, down to the ground, by the sudden onset of depression. This, as you may imagine, rather killed whatever rant was brewing. To sublimate for today, here is an old school pearl, which covers most of what I might have said. I hope you enjoy this ‘savior’ pearl, which has saved you from yet another rant by gigoid…. I’ll even add an extra pearl at the end, from one of the first philosophers to take shots at the concept of government…. Enjoy!….

From 8/9/2012:

Since I have already ranted, I’ll save you from another right away by giving this old school pearl…. These quotations all point in the same direction, and will lead eventually to yet another fine reason to mistrust the beloved ruling class…..

Then came the churches,
then came the schools,
then came the lawyers,
then came the rules.

~~ Mark Knopfler ~~

“A man cannot be too careful in the choice of his enemies.” — Oscar Wilde, “The Picture of Dorian Grey”, 1891

“People are always talking about tradition, but they forget we have a tradition of a few hundred years of nonsense and stupidity, that
there is a tradition of idiocy, incompetence and crudity.” — Hugo Demartini, in “Contemporary Artists”, 1977

“People are very open-minded about new things — as long as they’re exactly like the old ones.” — Charles F. Kettering

The Government is my shepherd, I shall not work. It maketh me to lie down on good jobs. It leadeth me beside the still factories. It destroyeth my initiative; It leadeth me in the paths of the parasite for politics sake; Yea, though I walk in the valley of Deficit Spending, I will fear no evil, For the Government is with me; its doles and its vote-getters they comfort me. It prepareth an Economic Utopia for me by appropriating the earnings of my grandchildren. It filleth my head with baloney, my inefficiency runneth over; Surely the Government shall care for me all the days of my life And I shall live in a Fool’s Paradise forever. — The Government’s 23rd Psalm

“By definition, a government has no conscience. Sometimes it has a policy, but nothing more.” — Albert Camus

“No matter how you vote, a government still gets elected.” — Smart Bee

That should about do it, I think….. if nothing else, one may get a clear picture of how I feel about government…..

Note from the future; here’s your bonus round, to finish off our indictment of the BRC….

“… But when he [the people’s champion] has disposed of foreign enemies by conquest or treaty, and there is nothing to fear from them, then he is always stirring up some war or other, in order that the people may require a leader.” — Plato (428-348? B.C.), “The Republic”

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Comedy_Tragedy

What the fuck is this?

Insanity waits patiently for me, sitting
in the corner, quietly knitting a psyche knot,
for my throat.

Depression is sitting on the couch, close
by the window, sulking over a broken pot;
he broke it.

Loneliness dogs my solitude, madly barking
into my left ear, while I trot,
half-heartedly, at best.

All my old friends have come to visit today;
a party, at which I was not
wanted, nor invited, .

What if I just ignore them all, I think;
even if it never worked before.
Oh, well.

The darkness fills the day, then carries into night,
until time has passed, until it feels just right.
No peace, no common dreams of light,
no escape, nor safety in flight.

Even poetry hurts.

~~ gigoid ~~

6/1/2016

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pearls_3

Naked Pearls

Obscurely Subtle

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“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, by Lewis Carroll ~~

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“You become responsible, forever, for what you have tamed.”

~~ The Little Prince, chapter XXI ~~

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“The supreme triumph of reason is to cast doubt upon its own validity.”

~~ Miguel de Unamuno ~~

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“When you drink the water, remember the spring.”

~~ Chinese Proverb ~~

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“If you are distressed by anything external,
the pain is not due to the thing itself,
but to your own estimate of it;
and this you have the power to revoke at any moment.”

~~ Marcus Aurelius ~~

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“Entropy requires no maintenance.”

~~ Amanda Walker ~~

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

~~ Irish proverb ~~

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“When friends ask, there is no tomorrow.”

~~ Ancient Human Proverb ~~

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“What happens to your fist when you open your hand?”

~~ Zen Buddhism ~~

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I’m a crazy old fart, I guess. (The fact I am sitting here, weeping as if my dog died yesterday seems like rather conclusive proof to me….) But, I’m happy-go-lucky, too, so, that’s something. I’ll be back tomorrow, ffolkes. I’ll offer no opinions of how that might look, nor any assurances of any sort of quality literature. But, I’ll be here, with a Pearl for your perusal. You see, THIS is what brings me back from the edge. This is what saves my sorry ass from ending up in jail, or dead…..What you have seen today is what keeps me from taking the bit between my remaining teeth, hoisting Henry’s black flag, and slitting the nearest throats. Believe it. So, I’ll see y’all tomorrow; it’s more important than you know…. to me…..

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

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

Which is Why….

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

gigoid, the dubious

The *only* duly authorized Computer Curmudgeon.

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

À bientôt, mon cherí….

Orgiastic impulses neatly excised….

Ffolkes,

“The supreme triumph of reason is to cast doubt upon its own validity.”

~~ Miguel de Unamuno ~~

resting warrior

The warrior rests….


Hajime…. There are times when the life changes we all go through as we age become habitual, or at the least, routinely present in such a way as to seem to be de rigeur. For me, this principle seems to apply heavily to my physical issues, complicated by my own lack of patience with my body’s steady decline in functions which have been, for most of my life, taken for granted as being a permanent characteristic, to wit; an ability to DO anything at all I wished my body to do, and, do it well. Now, I must think ahead, to account for the failures of strength or resilience that once were unknown to me. Quite frankly, it’s a pain in the ass, but, then, by this time, we also know it ain’t goin’ away….

I really didn’t mean to start off with a litany of the complaints of the aged, but, having again spent a restless night of trying to find a position comfortable enough to fall asleep, until about 0130 am, when I finally fell asleep until about 0430…. whereupon the cat insisted it was time to get up & feed her, and open a window for her to monitor the birds. Hence, here I am, old, tired, & grumpy, again, a state which seems to be turning into a rather more permanent condition than I really would like; it’s fun to be grumpy, after a life of holding in one’s angst, but, most of the time, one ends up dumping on the wrong person, so, it’s best to try to avoid such a state when possible, to keep from developing bad moral habits.

Gee, do ya think I’ve been too personal? Or, just too chatty? Well, I do, and I’m the one typing here, so, I think we’ll just get on with the rest of this mess, since much of it still needs to be either polished up for reading, or, simply put in the correct format. I do, in spite of not trying to become famous, take some pride in my work; just because nobody is paying me doesn’t mean I don’t have to do my best. And, that statement, by itself, is one we have heard from far too few people in the world for a long time, as the moral/ethical status of humanity has gone into the toilet as the oligarchy has become more entrenched, and the populace has become more, and more, stupid and venal. Not many folks these days care much about the quality of anything they produce, as long as they get what they want from doing it. Quality isn’t even on the job specs, at all….

Ah well, no need to start ranting in the intro; yesterday’s re-blog said all that much more clearly, and much more compellingly than what I just related. Since that’s so, I guess I’ll just employ one of the Tardis Toys, and be done with it. You might want to hang on to something; this one makes some sharp turns….

Shall we Pearl?

“You think the only people who are people,
Are the ones who look and think the way you do,
But if you walk the footsteps of a stranger,
You’ll learn the things you never knew you never knew…

You can own the Earth and still,
All you’ll own is earth until
You can paint with all the colors of the wind.”

~~ Stephen Schwartz, Colors of the Wind ~~


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royalty-free-clip-art-vector-logos-of-black-and-orange-floral-acoustic-guitars-by-seamartini-graphics-6573

    Most days here at ECR, if you see the icon above, you’d think, “classical music”. Most days, you’d be right. Today, however, I’m indulging myself, and it just means we’re listening to the best guitar player I know of, all-around. There may be better musicians in some genres who can be considered his equal. But, for my taste, his work is the best of the best, for every kind of music he has attempted in his time. It might just be me, but, a lot of ffolkes seem to agree…. Enjoy, ffolkes; I intend to do so myself, so, y’all may as well join in…. Here’s Eric, with an acoustic guitar and a few friends….

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Eric Clapton
Unplugged

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Sandclock .jpg

    I’m late, I’m late, etc….. Since I am, here is a decent little rant from a few years ago to fill in this section. Enjoy!….

From 2/3/2013:

“People see what they have been conditioned to see;
they refuse to see what they don’t expect to see.”

~~ Merle P. Martin ~~


This statement is one that will find some strong agreement here, as it is as clear an indictment of the unwashed masses as I’ve ever seen; it places some of the blame on their oppressors, as it should, but still manages to show where people are responsible for their own ignorance, in spite of how they may be conditioned…. One may not be responsible for their conditioning, but they are still responsible for what they refuse to acknowledge as truth, and Mr. Martin has given them little room to wiggle out of that responsibility…..

In some ways, y’all might think that I tend to obsess about those who are manipulating society. and the impending global catastrophes that I see as inevitable. In a way, you could be right…. it COULD be called obsession, since I do take at least one shot a day at the BRC and the priestly hierarchies; if I don’t hit them regularly, I just feel empty, and incomplete….. But, I don’t lose any sleep over it, so I think my concerns are still in the rational stages of evolution. What can be challenging is finding new ways to approach the subject, that will show the assholes for what they are, and what they are doing to the rest of us, and still not bore the reader senseless…. it’s hard to motivate someone who has fallen asleep….

“The worth of the State, in the long run, is the worth of the individuals composing it, and a State which postpones the interest of their mental expansion and elevation to a little more of administrative skill, or of that semblance of it which practice gives in the details of business… will find that with small men no great thing can be accomplished.” — John Stuart Mill, ‘On Liberty’, 1859

The other day, someone asked me a question about a statement I had made, to the effect that I believed that the usurpation of the Constitution began within minutes of it being signed…. She asked me how I knew that, and at the time, I gave her the answer that occurred to me at the time, to wit: I know this because I know human nature, and the money lenders and bankers wouldn’t have wanted to wait even a minute to try to get their two cents into the process, in order to start turning it to their advantage….. And Mr. Mill has, with this statement, shown us how they went about that perversion….

During elections, and often in the time prior to the announcement of the candidates and their platforms, there is a loud lamentation that there are no GOOD candidates to be found, that the men and women who end up running for office are NOT the most qualified for the job, but merely those who WANT it for their own reasons (you can bet that altruism is NOT one of those reasons….). In fact, to my mind, the single most qualifying characteristic I would like to see in ANY candidate would be a lack of desire to get elected; in other words, in order to be well-qualified, they have to NOT want to get elected…. It’s the only way we can trust them not to steal so much….

“Intelligence has nothing to do with politics.”

~~ Londo Molari ~~


What we have in reality is that ALL of those who run for office are people who WANT POWER; the exceptions are too few to be statistically significant, so I use the word ALL with that caveat. Sure, occasionally, a person who really doesn’t want to be in office, but happens to be the most qualified, gets persuaded by friends that they can do some good, and they are popular enough, and intelligent enough, to get elected. Once in office, though, they generally discover that their opportunities to do good for others are severely limited by the efforts of their peers, who have no interest whatsoever in looking after the people, unless it serves their own purpose.

“Every man is a damn fool for at least five minutes every day;
wisdom consists in not exceeding the limit.”

~~ Elbert Hubbard ~~


It’s hard to say whether writing pieces such as this one is a part of my five minutes, or whether it is part of the other side of the coin, which prevents me from reaching my limit…. Either way, I’m starting to understand that, since I’m shouting into the wind, pretty much, with these political and social diatribes, I need to keep them fairly short, and uncomplicated, or I will lose my audience to boredom with the repetitive nature of what I’m writing. Yes, we need to be aware that most of our Beloved Ruling Class are assholes, and need to be culled from the human herd….. but railing about it too much will only defeat my purpose, which is to educate and stimulate, hopefully to action that will serve to help the situation….

So rather than exceed my limit for the day, we’ll leave this here, and hope that what I’ve written will cause at least a touch of bleeding in the BRC, even if it’s only a scratch…. Better now to go look for some poetry, to soothe my fevered brow….

“I know everything about everything, except that.”

~~ Smart Bee ~~


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Comedy_Tragedy

Premises, premises….

Tricked, I stumble, and I fall
   dreaming, through an abandoned palace.
Frightened and wary, unheard my call
   fading into memory, no cup, no argent chalice.

The people, crushed, cry out to be freed
   asking only to take part, or travel.
Nascent oaths spotlight such bursting need
   fed by treachery, deep from our well.

Only the wicked shall find their way blocked
   justice seeks them, snug in their hole.
Faint praises never touched, but naked, stalked
   singing no gospel, no soul, no rock and roll.

Only the promised will remember the way
   from unforgiven trails of sorrow.
To live life, and give death no sway,
   saving grace for our only tomorrow.

~~ gigoid ~~

12/19/2014


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pearls_3

    In order to finish in good time, I must again go to the well, er, archives. Here is one from the day after the rant I used above. I hope you enjoy it….

From 2/4/2013:

Once again, fate has conspired to force my hand, to the point where I must prevaricate in order to stay on track…. which is to say, I’ve been stupid, and lost my way to wherever it was I’d planned to go…. As is my wont in such cases, we will go old school, with a group of pearls that all have something to say about something or other…. Today, we’ll address stupidity, and how all of us on the bus may fall prey to it at times…. Sometimes you eat the bear, and sometimes, the bear eats you, as they say…. Here are some thoughts on the matter from some pretty famous ffolkes, and a couple not so widely known, but respected for their wisdom in their own circle….

“The majority of the stupid is invincible and guaranteed for all time. The terror of their tyranny, however, is alleviated by their lack of consistency.” — Albert Einstein

“There is no sin except stupidity.” — Oscar Wilde (1854-1900), “The Critic as Artist”, 1891

“There is no nonsense so arrant that it cannot be made the creed of the vast majority by adequate governmental action.” — Bertrand Russell (1872-1967), “An outline of Intellectual Rubbish”

“Stupid is as stupid does.” — Mrs. Gump, Forrest’s mama

“The only evidence against evolution are its opponents.” — Smart Bee

Boy, if that ain’t the Truth, in big, shiny letters ten feet tall!…. In contrast, below you will find one of my all time favorite aphorisms, from my all time favorite author, advising us of what we CAN be, if we choose….

“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, and die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” — Robert A. Heinlein, The Notebooks of Lazarus Long

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I have fulfilled my vow; this allows me to enter the remainder of the day with a clear conscience, if not complete serenity. Good enough. I’ll even forgo any further idiocy here, and merely say, see y’all tomorrow, when I will make yet another attempt at transforming my inner demons into intelligent discourse…. Sure I will….

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 -- 2780


À bientôt, mon cherí….


Ham-handed & stupid? Sir, I resemble that remark!….

Ffolkes,

“Nadie tiene mas imaginacion que la realidad.”

(Nodody has more imagination than reality.)

~~ Miguel de Unamuno, “El Espejo de la Muerte”, 1941 ~~

Mars One 2025 settlement
Artist’s rendition of Mars One Colony, picture from Space.com


Today’s post is going to be a strange one, though, not to any degree unheard of in our case. That being said, we will also notify y’all we will NOT be engaging in any of our usual angst over the intro, since there won’t be one…. at least, not in any ordinary sense. What you see is all you get today, as I am operating under extreme conditions of hurry-up, without even the opportunity to explain why we are altering Reality in such an arbitrary fashion… In fact, we have to leave, now…

That’s all, ffolkes…. anything else is just going to have to wait…. For now, we are outta here, and on to the meat of the matter, such as it is….

Shall we Pearl?

“Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened.” — Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965) — Churchill’s Commentary on Man

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This video is one of my favorite pieces of musical tribute, with good reason, as it contains music from a great many of the world’s finest modern composers and musicians, all in tribute to a world cultural icon…. Plus, it was handy, making it quick, and perfect for today…. Enjoy, ffolkes, it doesn’t get any better than this…..

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Concert for George [2003]

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Dont keep calm

    Since I don’t have time to rant, here are enough headlines from the last few days to depress anyone…. Y’all can fill in your own nasty remarks regarding the BRC and the Asininnies you may see in the following articles from the mainstream media…. I won’t say enjoy, but, I will say, stay alert…. You might even find a surprise!….

http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/mar/02/los-angeles-police-shoot-dead-homeless-man-after-street-altercation?CMP=ema_565


http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2015/mar/03/the-results-are-in-study-reveals-average-penis-size

That’s all, ffolkes…. any more would ruin the whole day…. Sorry ’bout that last one; I couldn’t resist….

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In the interests of speed, one of mine will have to do….

Savory

Blown across steppes of imagination, a spore
   finds a niche, takes root,
tries to live longer than now, before
   chaos/peace descends, and desire is moot.

Feathered into fecundity, another possibility
   builds a nest, hatches kin,
aims at immortality, sans responsibility,
   chance manifests, as it does, again.

Leading toward peril, entropy saves creativity,
   making tools, and lazy time;
solid signs imply such simple nativity,
   as another snitch drops his dime.

Subtle compassion billows, passion to unfold,
   covering hearts bloodied by time,
burning flesh made valid, unwaveringly bold,
   turning love to brilliant rhyme.

Years weigh lightly, supported by youth,
   gaining weight with each year,
only the old men know the actual truth,
   peace comes only when we lose our fear.

~~ gigoid ~~


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This is the other group of pearls introduced yesterday in the fifth, old-school section of the Daily Pearl; chosen with carefully random parameters, this one seems to be a group of observations/instructions on life, very powerful taken together, with no little degree of snark to add some flavor, without actually detracting from the otherwise solidly dignified advice…. or, something like that….

In truth, as always, any true conclusions are left as an exercise for the Gentle Reader…. As you may have observed, everything I have to say is generally either the whole and complete truth, the occasional false trail, or blather…. Hey, it’s better than ending on a rant, right?….

“Do not be overly emotional. All people have emotions, but do not be overcome by them as children are. Always guide your energy in the right channel without rushing over the rim.” — Ni Hua Ching

“Live your own life, for you will die your own death.” — Latin Proverb

“Make yourself an honest man, and then you may be sure there is one less rascal in the world.” — Thomas Carlyle

“The best rule of friendship is to keep your heart a little softer than your head.” — George Santayana

“When an opponent come forward, move in and greet him; if he wants to pull back, send him on his way.” — Morihei Ueshiba

“One sits down first, one thinks afterwards.” — Ah Yes, famous Dubioid scholar

“Quickly, bring me a beaker of wine, so that I may wet my mind and say something clever.” — Aristophanes

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Well, I feel…. soiled and unclean…. I cheated so much, I’m going to have to go shower off when I finish…. Oh well, it’s done, which is all I care about just now…. I’ll do better tomorrow, ffolkes. Well, I’ll do it, anyway…. One way or another…. See ya….

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

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

Which is Why….

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

gigoid, the dubious

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

dozer3

À bientôt, mon cherí….


					

Out of walnuts, again? Call the fusileers…

Ffolkes,

“Grief has limits, whereas apprehension has none. 

For we grieve only for what has happened,

but we fear all that possibly may happen.”

~~ Pliny the Younger ~~

DTHalloween

    Today’s picture was found via my news reader, RSS Owl; it was originally the Astronomy Picture of the Day on the NASA website, a day or so before Halloween. On the NASA site where it is located, links are available to point out the Halloween-oriented objects in the sky, such as the Ghost Nebula, the Skeleton Nebula, etc…. It’s pretty cool, but, not as cool as the picture itself, showing the Devil’s Tower (from the movie re: first contact, Close Encounters of the Third Kind…), with the entire Milky Way spreading across the sky above…. Simply gorgeous, and inspiring to one who has always believed the stars to be our destiny….

At this point, usually, I’d make some comment about how we humans are denying ourselves our own destiny, by the acts we allow the predators among us to pursue in their mad quest for power over everyone else…. Today, however, I’m going to ignore the impulse to rant that I display so often, and get on with this Pearl, difficult though it is to bite my lip, or in this case, allow my hands to stop typing…. I even have the built-in excuse of pain to justify such a procedure, as it is still raining here in NorCal…. Hell, just getting these few paragraphs done will be an ordeal; I’m already just about ready to quit, or to take a break to spray on some magic rub…. good idea….

Ah, much better…. The problem now becomes obvious; where do I go from here? Oh, wait, there’s an idea…. Hold on while I try to pin it down long enough to see what it is….. Nope, that won’t do; it’s too specific; we need something a bit more general to play with…. How about…. no, that won’t work, either; too obvious…. Well, shoot, this is embarrassing, isn’t it? I feel like a computer with a loop of 404 messages, for sure. Hmm…. I know, I’ll cheat, just as if I were an elected official…

Hah! Fooled ya! No cheating going on here, boss. We don’t do cheating here; hell, I wouldn’t know where to begin, having not indulged in it in a very long time… Well, there was that time at Kaiser, but, they pissed me off, and deserved what they got…. I suppose it wouldn’t be too hard to find a way to do so, but, I just noticed we are far enough down the page to legally end this…. which, as may be surmised, comes at a perfect time, right before we gave up entirely, and slipped into our old standby, nonsense and blather….

This intro section, I would guess, is also an example of blather, but, relatively well disguised as an intelligent discussion of current events here on ECR…. What? Oh, I guess it isn’t so well disguised, is it? Oh, well…. The hell with it, I’m outta here…. See y’all down below, ffolkes, I’m done with this….

Shall we Pearl?

“Honor is the reward of virtue.” — Cicero (B.C. 106-43)

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

“Is not life a hundred times too short for us to bore ourselves?” — Friedrich Nietzsche

I may be pulling my covers, but, I love these cat videos…. I can watch cats for a long time without becoming tired of it; they have more personality than most humans I’ve met, for sure…. Plus, this allows anyone who is jonesing for some quality laughter to indulge themselves fully…. Anyone who doesn’t at least smile or chuckle at the first video, shows proof they have NO sense of humor at all…. Enjoy, ffolkes…. and try not to waste the ENTIRE day on this….

10 HOURS Epic Funny Cats ! (BIGGEST Cats Fails Compilation in the World)

 

 

 

 

“What comes from this quarter, set it down as so much gain.” — Terence (185-159 BC) — Adelphoe, Act v, Sc. 3, 30, (816.)

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Once more, I’m resorting to the archives, since I can’t type worth shit today…. It ain’t Sartre, or Ibsen, but it ain’t bad….

From 2/20/2013:

“A man cannot be comfortable without his own approval.” — Mark Twain

As I sit here, I can almost feel myself getting older…. It seems to be a predilection of being this age, that one becomes somewhat introspective, looking back over our time here on Earth, and making judgments about what we’ve done, or are guilty of leaving undone, in our lives. This preoccupation seems to be innate, but, I don’t necessarily see a lot of it in others my age, in my experiences out in society at large.

Here, on WordPress, the normal demographics of population diversity seems to run a bit higher, in that respect, than it does out in the Big Blue Room…. probably something to do with the fact that those here on this site are, if nothing else, highly educated enough, and/or affluent enough, to partake in the Internet’s community dialogue…. Sometimes, it’s hard to remember that there are still millions of folks out there who have never, and never will, see any of what transpires here, for whatever reason, educational, financial, or merely indifference…. In that group of people, those my age are concerned much of the time with survival, and tend to be directed outward, to deal with the mechanics of that critical issue.

To that group, introspection is a luxury they cannot afford to indulge in themselves, as it takes time away from activities and mental attitudes necessary for surviving. I have been living on the edge of that group for a couple of years now, and can only be thankful that I am close enough to the edge to be able to afford this luxury; I do have to make sacrifices to have it, so I appreciate it a lot. It was a pain in the derrière, literally, to have to leave home to find internet access, so, not having to do so is a big plus for me.

In my time of introspection, I’ve spent a lot of it fighting off guilt, for the things I’ve done in my life that don’t meet with my own approval, as so aptly referred to by Mr. Twain. We all have those things hidden in our memories, those failures of ethical or moral standards we set for ourselves, and looking back on them is hard, as there is nothing we can do to change it. We have to learn to forgive ourselves for such transgressions, because no one else, not even God, if ones choose to believe in the traditional dogma, can change the past. (Query: Can God build a wall so strong He can’t knock it down, or a rock so heavy He can’t pick it up?…. Just wondered; sorry, little side trip….)

Since we cannot change the past, nor go back and try to make things better, if nothing else, we must learn to hold those little kernels of painful memory inside us, and find a way to deal with the little nugget of discomfort that will always accompany such memories. It is a delicate procedure, as we must deal with chastising and scolding our own selves, while still maintaining our self-love, without which we can never be comfortable, or comforted. One cannot accept love from another unless they feel it is deserved; it will sour and spoil all the flavor of the interaction, dooming it to failure, and pain.

How do we maintain this self-image of someone who is worthy of being loved by others? Well, that, my friends, is a very long story, indeed, and one I’m not going to start here and now, as it could be days before I surfaced again, and we’re already at the point where most folk’s minds, as well as those of regular ffolkes, will be losing interest, unless I pull some literary magic, or set off some figurative fireworks. Currently, my supply of fireworks is low, so we’ll leave a deeper discussion of this subject for another time. For now, let me say this….

We are all creatures of a Universe that puts a premium on flexibility, especially of mind. This flexibility is enhanced when we spend time on ourselves, in introspection, and inner dialogue, and is ultimately part of what is the only way to ever really achieve any balance or stability in life. It gives us the proper perspective on how we fit into the rest of the picture, and points the way to the greatest degree of successful interaction with the other parts of that universe. It is the best way to stay in touch with what we are, and what we need to be, to survive, and to make our lives meaningful in some way.

“We are injured and hurt emotionally – not so much by other people or what they say or don’t say – but by our own attitude and our own response.” — Maxwell Maltz, “Psycho-Cybernetics”

Well worth a dollar, or a moment or two of your time, I’d say…. Try something new and different, spend some time in your own head…. Of course, one should (careful, there’s that word!….) be cautious in this, as with any potentially mind-altering activity like mindful introspection…. You never know when a preconceived notion will jump up and bite you….. and those ingrained prejudices can be hard to spot, as they tend to hide behind walls of ignorance and fear….. Remember yesterday’s pearl…. The Snark might actually be a Boojum…. Catch it, cook it, eat it with some fava beans and a nice Chianti, and then get on with your life….

🙂

Note from 2014: To end such a discussion properly, a pearl of appropriate measure should be included, to wit:

“Has the world always been like this, or have I been too wrapped up in myself to notice?” — The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

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Here is a three-fer of my own works; don’t worry, they’re all short, and to the point….

Tiny Truth, Just in Time

 I’ll leave history to say if it’s a crime,
    as it will always do….
Who may challenge the prerogative of Time?….
Nobody, that’s who…. 

 ~~ gigoid ~~

————————————————————–

Striking Gold

Madness comes and goes, it’s true,
whenever it chooses to do so.
Living’s much like wearing a shoe,
when all you are is a toe.
~~ gigoid ~~

—————————————————————

Territorial imperative….

Beauty must define, as augment to existence,
  as life must be more than mere subsistence.
Nature demands more.
Truth helps.

~~ gigoid ~~


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

Today’s final pearl came together in spurts yesterday, with only the last two entries found, at last, this morning…. It’s getting hard to put this together, ffolkes, having to come back to it so often, due to necessary breaks in the action to go somewhere to moan piteously…. Ah well, it came out well, for all that, as a group of pearls to provide us with some of the better ideas we humans have stumbled across in our search for wisdom…. It’s a seven-star pearl, with a final, extra pearl to help point the way to the point…. All the great advice in the pearl can be absorbed by observing the truth in the last line….

“How did the great rivers and seas gain dominion over the hundred lesser streams?  By being lower than they.” — Lao Tzu

“Doing it the hard way is always easier.”– Murphy’s Paradox

“When washing your face, can you see your true self? When walking, can you feel the rotation of heaven? When speaking are your words without guile? When you shop are you aware of your needs? When you meet the suffering, do you help? When you meet conflict, do you work toward harmony?” — Deng Ming-Dao

“Beware of the “Black Swan” fallacy. Deductive logic is tautological; there is no way to get a new truth out of it, and it manipulates false statements as readily as true ones. If you fail to remember this, it can trip you – with perfect logic. The designers of the earliest computers called this the “Gigo Law”, i.e. “garbage in, garbage out”.  Inductive logic is MUCH more difficult – but can produce new truths.” — Lazarus Long

“The best plan is, as the common proverb has it, to profit by the folly of others.” — Pliny the Elder (23-79 AD) — Natural History, Book xviii, Sect. 31

“The supreme triumph of reason is to cast doubt upon its own validity:” — Miguel de Unamuno

“Give, expecting nothing thereof” — St. Thomas Aquinas

Remember, ffolkes, all the above starts with this:

“Doubt is the key to knowledge.” — Persian Proverb

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

“It was a big one, Pa, but, I beat it!”

Well, that’s the way it feels, anyway…. All in all, it’s not too shabby; it’s definitely done, which makes it perfect for our purposes…. Funny how that works, isn’t it? See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes….

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

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

Which is Why….

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

gigoid, the dubious

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

Kowabunga!


À bientôt, mon cherí….


					

A burning desire for justice….

Ffolkes,

“Nadie tiene mas imaginacion que la realidad.” — Miguel de Unamuno, “El Espejo de la Muerte”, 1941

better out than in

“Nothing has more imagination than reality.” — Miguel de Unamuno, “The Mirror of Death”, 1941


This picture, which I got on the web, somewhere ( I know, it calls for more accuracy than that…. I found it in a photo feature on the London Daily Telegraph web site…..), perfectly illustrates how I feel almost every day when I am trying to create these Pearls…. Because of who I am, such a task, having been assumed as a duty, requires that I give each one my best shot, in terms of using my mind for what it was intended, to wit: …….

Okay, I’m busted, again…. That long, echoing silence you heard was me, repeating to myself all the different thoughts that were NOT running through my mind, in response to the above attempt at intellectual levity, first thing, even before the coffee has hit the blood stream…. It’s a complete wash…. I CAN’T think, at all, but, especially not of what we are supposed to be using our minds for….. Whatever it is, doing this will either help me find out, or will make it so I will never, ever have any such luck…. Luck is probably my best bet, anyway, because sheer grit isn’t going to do it, and, obviously, my vaunted intelligence isn’t completely up to the task, at least, not to the perfectionist degree for which I’m asking….

Just look at the picture, and you’ll get a better idea, anyway, of what it feels like to try to create a Pearl, and get it out to the Universe….which makes the picture all that much more appropriate, as it appears that my Pearls, and the light from this guy’s exploding consciousness, seem to be about equal, in relation to how much the Universe will pay attention…. In short, neither one of us is liable to ever become rich, famous, or notorious, or even ridiculous, very much at all… In fact, he may be at the North Pole, or thereabout, but, he’s probably got as many followers as me….

Pity party all done…. I’m just screwing around, anyway, passing time until something more coherent, or more hilarious, or even more tasteful should come along… Of course, we all know there’s a “fat chance” of any of those happening anytime soon, don’t we? Of course we do…. And we don’t go off to cry ourselves to sleep at night, either….  Just kidding again, I’m actually sleeping well… some days I just tend to go for the cheap jokes right away, or, in truth, when they present themselves. What can I say, it’s a weakness….

The normal course of events would, at this point, find me frantically trying to figure out how to extract myself from the intro section; as is patently clear, today is no exception, with the only difference to be noted in my relative feeling of calm…. I’m not overly amped, or even awake, for that matter, so, even though I AM kind of stuck here, I’m not fretting over it. That’s because I have a secret…. What is it? Well, now, if I told you, it wouldn’t be a secret any more, now would it? Nope…. So, I’ll just show you…. watch closely…..

Shall we Pearl?…..

“Every man is a divinity in disguise, a god playing the fool.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

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

I’m in a rather strange frame of mind, even for me…. I couldn’t find any headlines that stimulated any anger, or angst, either, which is pretty new…. I’m also having trouble finding anything in my head that would potentially serve to create anything worthwhile for this section…. You know what that means, I’m sure…. Yep, a trip to the archives…. Here is a fairly short discussion, originally from November of 2012, which I think you might enjoy…. I hope so….

“He who dies a thousand deaths meets the final hour with the calmness of one who approaches a well remembered door.” — Heywood Brown

I almost passed this by when I first read it, then, after I thought a moment about it, it occurred to me that it sounds like a defense of cowardice, which is what we usually associate with the phrase “He who dies a thousand deaths”…. Upon further reflection, though, that phrase, though certainly appropriate for describing the state of uncontrolled fear that brings a human to react with cowardice, could also be used to describe some of my own experience in dealing with violence. To generalize that thought, it could be said that a person who faces situations where death is hovering nearby, always a threat to manifest its presence in reality, is also dying a death each time, because their imagination is always aware of the proximity of the possibility….

I once made the mistake of counting how many times I faced off with a person who wanted to rip my head off, and would have done so had I not acted to prevent that from becoming reality. Suffice it to say it was entirely too many times, though somewhat less than a thousand (not by much, but less….), those were enough to estimate a conclusive figure, showing how often my imagination was stimulated into conjuring visions of possible outcomes that included my own death…. which was each and every time.

Of course, the key to success in such situations is to be able to put aside, or ignore, those visions, in order to keep them from becoming real…. I learned very well to react very quickly in such situations, in a way that allowed me to control the outcome, rather than random chance or, worse, having the other party assume that control. Fortunately for all involved, I never lost…. at least, not in the sense of becoming physically injured, or dead. (Nobody else that I controlled was ever hurt or killed,  either, a fact I’m pretty proud of…. although, mental injuries are another story, entirely….)

The quote at the beginning of this entry is one I find to be a comfort to me as I get closer to the time when death will come to make my acquaintance in this lifetime. As a conscious being, I naturally have to believe that my mind, or soul, if you prefer, will not cease to exist; only a change that we do not understand will happen, one which no one has ever successfully explained with any degree of certainty. There is, of course, no evidence to support the belief that we do not merely stop existing, like the flame of a candle, when we die…. Nor any to support the idea that we will somehow “wake up” somewhere else, according to our particular set of preferences in such philosophies.

Nothing tangible can be produced, or has ever been produced, that makes such a belief a proven conclusion; contrarily, there is also no evidence available that it is not true. We each have a strong feeling that our soul is indestructible, like energy of any type, but no incontrovertible proof is available for either side of the issue. Thus, we can only hold on to our sense of spiritual connection to the universe, that part of us that knows that, like sunlight, or electricity, or heat, our conscious mind is a manifestation of energy, one which, like all the other kinds of energy we perceive, does not cease to exist, ever. It may change forms, or even types (as light can become electricity, or motion become heat….), but it does not leave the universe at all.

To me, and to certain philosophies, the qualities of water are a good example to use as a way of understanding this principle. Water cannot be destroyed. You can, by altering its temperature, cause it to change form, from ice, to water, to steam…. but it cannot be destroyed at all. Our minds, and thoughts, our spirits, if you will, can be thought of as water, ever flexible, ever changeable, yet never ceasing to exist in any way, and retaining within its being all the qualities that make it, and us, what we are…. another unique part of a beautifully complex and wonderful reality….

To me, that is, indeed, a comforting thought….

“If I am I because you are you, and if you are you because I am I, then I am not I, and you are not you” ~~ Hassidic rabbi

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

Since I’ve gone off the rails with archived material, I thought I should put in a really good poem here…. Sadly, all I could find was one of my own…. sniffle, gasp, moan….

Dreaming, I wait….

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

~~ gigoid ~~

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

I’m cheating again…. I found this while cruising the archives, and it is one of the best of the Pearls from the year it was created…. Since my head is achingly, heartbreakingly empty, this will make a nice replacement for what might have otherwise gone here…. This is better, trust me….

From 11/16/2011:

Ffolkes,

Good morrow to you…. let us begin as we mean to go on….

“Writing is easy. All you do is stare at a blank sheet of paper until drops of blood form on your forehead.” — Gene Fowler

This line is included today merely to give y’all an idea of what I go through every morning to produce this…. whatever it is. It is a pretty good description, actually, because when I’m done, I actually feel battered and bloody….. Actually, bloody well-used-up is what it is. Maybe it’s easier for other writers; I don’t know. But for me, to produce something that my standards will allow me to publish for others to read, is much like having a piece of my soul ripped out, taking a a kidney with it. The funny thing is, though it hurts a lot, I wouldn’t stop doing it, even if I could. The pain of creation, which. after all. requires destruction first, is a worthy payoff for the sense of accomplishment I get when I see one of my pieces online for all to see. Quite a rush actually….

“Most human beings have an almost infinite capacity for taking things for granted.” — Aldous Huxley

This observation, as far as I can tell, is 100% accurate, and because it is, many of the problems society is facing are easily explained, if not easily resolved. For example, when was the last time you gave a thought to what else besides oxygen is in the air that you take into your lungs on the average of 15-20 times per minute.? When you last got a glass of water from the tap, did you stop to think about what was in the water you use to drink, cook with, and bathe in? As Mr. Huxley pointed out, most folks, yourselves included, seldom think about or appreciate such simple necessities, or what might happen if they were no longer available.

What will we do when the air is so full of carbon dioxide that the amount of oxygen in contains falls below the point where it will sustain life? Will we all have to wear breathing apparatus in order to brave the outside world? What will happen to all the other animals if there isn’t sufficient air? What will you do when the water you drink is no longer safe to consume? We need water as much as we need air; our chemical make-up is 90% water, and not having enough of it to replace what we lose is a sure path to the grave within a matter of days.

There are other issues connected to this subject; the consistent degradation of our planet’s ecosystem has a great many negative effects, small and unnoticeable at first, but growing larger over time until they are added to the list of processes that will eventually lead to extinction of ALL of this planet’s life forms.  Part of the problem is that it is a slow, insidious process, this degradation, and the deleterious outcomes are not evident until too late to reverse.

You must remember, the Universe doesn’t care, one way or the other, whether we survive or not; the rules are the rules, and fighting against the natural laws of our space-time continuum is a fool’s bet. Like it or not, we, as a species, are going to need to make some serious changes to the way we do things, if we are to survive at all. And we will need to do it starting yesterday….

“A man’s ethical behavior should be based effectually on sympathy, education, and social ties; no religious basis is necessary. Man would indeed be in a poor way if he had to be restrained by fear of punishment and hope of reward after death.” — Albert Einstein

I really admire Albert Einstein, and not because he was a great scientist, as well as one of history’s shining examples of men and women who greatly advance human knowledge, and do so out of their love of mankind. Albert’s wisdom was not restricted to the principles of physics and math; he had a unique way of looking at the world, and the ability to share their deep insights into life and the universe for the benefit of others. He was an eternal optimist, and as the above quote demonstrates, had a firm grip on the concept of living with honor and dignity.

He believed in the inherent goodness of every man, and lived his life in a way that it stands as an example for the rest of us. I cannot wholly agree with what he states above, because I have a much darker view of what human nature is capable of, and less faith in mankind’s willingness to submit to natural law. But what he said does show with clarity where our salvation lies, and in his own inimitable manner, he shares his deeper knowledge with the rest of us in the hope it will inspire others to act honorably….

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

From what I gather in my study of 19th century American writers, a lot of the best were what I would call masters of advanced curmudgeonry. Emerson, Walden, Thoreau,  were all libertarians living in compromise with a democracy, and spent much of their time either complaining about society, or hiding from it in their forest retreats. This is not to say that what they wrote was bad or mistaken in premise, necessarily, but if you read their work with this in mind, it becomes apparent that they didn’t much like other folks, or put much trust in their rationality.

But, as the included quote indicates, being a curmudgeon doesn’t necessarily mean they don’t understand humanity, or what it takes to make life complete. This paragraph from Mr. Emerson demonstrates this perfectly. One cannot argue with conviction that all of these attributes listed, and experiences from a long life, are positively rooted, and make perfect sense. Whether or not we actually have all of these characteristics is unimportant; the list remains valid even if incomplete. And it provides anyone with a good map and directions that can be useful to us in our pursuit of happiness….

So much for another day…. Hopefully, you have consumed a fair portion of food for thought, and found it palatable enough. If not, feel free to let me know, and I’ll see if I can come up with something more savory…. in the meantime, y’all take care out there….

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

Today’s Pearl is one of the reasons I go with my instincts a lot…. I was going to write fresh today, but, every time I turned around, a better alternative presented itself…. So, I went with the flow, and can only say I’m glad I did…. This came out pretty well…. Now, if I can get more than five or six ffolkes to read it, or even a few more folks than normally drop by,  I’ll be happy as a clam at high tide…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes….

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

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

Which is Why….


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

gigoid the dubious

Featured Image -- 2780

Zero is a hard row to hoe……

Ffolkes,
Having decided to forgo the usual nonsense, there will be no introductory section this morning. Yesterday’s near-disastrous hijacking of my keyboard has put me on edge, security-wise, and I think it is best if I just leave this section out, and go right into today’s dive….. oh. Wait. Hmm…… this is already an intro, isn’t it? Well, so much for that idea….

Well, since I can’t say, “I love it when a plan comes together!”, I guess I’ll just have to say, “WTF?”  (See? I AM capable of tact….. I could have spelled it out, couldn’t I?…. all part of the service…..) The latter is more honest, at base, and expresses my normal state of mind in the morning much more accurately. I’m finding that displaying such personal foibles is preferable to humanity’s normal policy of insisting all is well, everything is fine, nothing to see here, move along….. if nothing else, it garners more sympathy votes, which, though demeaning to accept, nonetheless help to stuff the ballot box. Cheating is, after all, the American Way…… if you doubt that, you really need to pay more attention…..

I’m not sure exactly what all that has to do with pearl diving; it sounded more as if I were just clearing my throat, mentally speaking, and really doesn’t say much of anything at all. Well, the last line is pretty pointed, but I didn’t jab very hard with it, so it doesn’t really count. At this point, once again, it would most likely be our best course of action to run to the end of the dock, and just dive in…. it would probably put the best end to a bad start, and may even save lives….. on that note, we are outta here….. let’s Pearl, like we did last summer…..
___________________________________

Ralph Barbieri fired as radio announcer at station KNBR in San Francisco, 4/10/2012…. link to article:

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/04/11/SP8G1O1SLU.DTL

I first heard Mr. Barbieri’s voice around 1984, when he first joined KNBR and the SF Bay Area sports scene. I have to say, right off the bat, his voice grates on my ear like fingernails across a chalkboard; there is a reason he has always been known as “Razor Voice Ralph”. It has always stood as an obstacle for me to listen to him for very long, as my nerve endings just start to vibrate along with his voice after a few minutes.

However, that being said, I also must add that I have always admired his work, in spite of his delivery. From the start of his career, he asked the tough questions, and never settled for a fluff answer from anyone, big star or not. If he believed in something, he was a passionate crusader for that cause, as indicated by his campaign to keep the Giants in SF when the team was considering a move to Florida. His involvement was a big part of the success of that campaign, during which he was tireless, making his love of sports, and particularly the Giants, plain for all to see. He always prepared and researched thoroughly, and was expert in almost any sport’s details. Though his voice and rough-hewn personality were difficult to ignore, he nonetheless remains a stalwart and professional example of a competent, and popular, sports reporter, for that is what he really is.

Ralph was fired in a manner with which I can empathize very closely. It took my employer about 15 minutes to accomplish what his company did with him in 7, but the net results were identical, right down to the blocked voice mail. I did manage to rate an escort off-grounds by hospital police rather than management, so I guess that is one small difference. Otherwise, me and Ralph, we’re twins on this….. so, I know somewhat of what he feels right now. Given that knowledge I must commend his reasoned initial public response; I’m afraid that, given his media exposure quotient, I would have been a lot more forceful in my response to such chicanery, and would no doubt have caused my lawyer no end of wincing and wringing of hands at my inflammatory public ranting.

But, the saddest part of the whole affair that I found was in the comments section after the article on SFGATE, wherein readers have the opportunity to sound off on the news articles on the site. One has to register to comment, but it’s free, so they have a pretty huge online community that comments on EVERYTHING.  I spent a little time after my initial comment, which kind of paralleled what I wrote just above, reading over some of the other comments.

I was shocked, to say the least, by the number of responses that were not merely sympathetic to the company that did the firing, but actually expressed outright glee at what had been perpetrated on Ralph by a company where he proved his value over 28 years. In only three pages I viewed to to gather some numbers, the responses that were viciously petty toward Ralph, or merely resigned at the company’s behavior, were approximately 65-75% of the total number I saw….. it was absolutely astounding how many calloused, uncaring ignoramuses had spoken up to display their complete lack of humanity.

“Nadie tiene mas imaginacion que la realidad.” — Miguel de Unamuno, “El Espejo de la Muerte”, 1941

It isn’t often I’m prompted, or stimulated, to write several hundred words on a sports story. I’m a fan, yes, but it isn’t a big time-consumer in my life, just an occasional trip into vicarious thrills and fond memories of bygone days. But the sheer number of petty, self-absorbed, even downright vicious responses was a surprise to me. Yes, me, the complete cynic when it comes to human stupidity and bigotry. But even I had no idea that the state of public morality had fallen into so deep a pit as is indicated in the responses to this issue, one of no particular cosmic or even national significance.

I am now going to excuse myself, and go finish drawing up my plans for what I’m going to do when civilization comes to a crashing halt…. I have a sinking feeling I don’t have as much time to get ready as I had previously believed…. so, I’d best get to it…. I suggest you think seriously about following my lead on this. We may not have a lot of time left….. if this is any indication, very little at all…..
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“I like Wagner’s music better than any other music. It is so loud that one can talk the whole time without people hearing what one says. That is a great advantage.” — Oscar Wilde

It’s been quite a while since these pages were blessed by a visit from Oscar; he is, and shall ever be, one of my favorite historical and literary figures, not only for the wit and charm of the verse in which he spoke, and wrote, but for the very picture of Life he painted with his every act. It was a picture of defiant genius, of incredible beauty and charm, a picture of towering intellect faced by the mundane restrictions of a repressed society. He was a man of the Twenty-first century as far as his ideas and his outlook, trapped and miserable in the Nineteenth century, completely misunderstood by all but those who flocked around him, ever anxious for any part of his charm and attention.

On this subject, i.e., opera, I have to side with Oscar. I love music, and just about all types. There are few genres that I don’t particularly care for, but the one I care for the least is opera. Strange actually, because I love classical music very much, and find the human voice to be perhaps the most compelling instrument mankind has ever produced. But, most of what I’ve heard in the operatic genre produces in me the same sort of reaction described here by Mssr. Wilde.

I have listened to a lot of it; I try to be fair before forming an opinion. But the majority of what I’ve heard was obscure, complicated beyond necessity, and in general, enough to induce sleep in a bipolar roadrunner in his manic phase, or, alternately, more than enough to keep one awake when we desperately want to be asleep…..

Oh, even opera has its high points. The aria that played in the movie “The Shawshank Redemption”, when the hero took over the warden’s office, and played it over the loudspeakers, is a stunning piece of music; that voice would raise the dead with such power and beauty. A couple of others come to mind as well, like one of the arias sung by the female lead in Aida.

Mostly, though, it all sounds like what my old pal Noah would sometimes sing when he particularly liked what Tom and I were playing on our guitars (Noah was my dog, for those who haven’t stopped in before; he was very social, and loved to join in whatever was going on….). Enthusiastic, but not particularly gripping, to be nice about it. Sorry, but that’s my opinion, for what it’s worth. As far as I’m concerned, we could lose every opera recording ever made, and I wouldn’t be troubled over it at all, at all…..
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“You’ve got the brain of a four-year-old boy, and I bet he was glad to get rid of it.” — Groucho Marx

Perfect! I have found the exactly right comment to make to my list…. you know, the list. The one we all have….. the one where we put the names of those folks in the public eye who continuously make comments that curl your hair, and cause you to run and make sure your ammo is dry. The folks who, every time they open their mouth to spew, make us wish for a return to the good old days of the Inquisition. The ones who speak out every day and prove the old adage about never opening one’s mouth to provide proof of being a fool.

So, the next time I am confronted with one of these pimples on the face of society, I will have the perfect opening line….. In the spirit of indulgence of whimsy, I will now display the first 6 names on my list of folks the world would do better to fit with a permanent mouth plug….

Ann Coulter (to my mind, no amount of verbal abuse would ever be enough for this one; it would take a lot to balance all the vitriol she has spewed on some quite nice folks…..)
Rush Limbaugh (rapidly losing his grip on reality, which was never very strong….)
Willard ‘Mitt’ Romney (the new spokesperson for Flip-Flops…..)
Pat Robertson (a familiar voice on these pages…)
Michelle Bachman (Minnesota Mickey’s been less prominently featured of late, but continues to amaze with her chutzpah….)
Sara Palin (One word….. weasel…..)

There…. I feel better now, though it was a struggle to confine the list to six names; there are a lot of folks who make a strong case for their inclusion. For now though, I’ll just bask in the glow of thinking how much fun it would be to give one them Groucho’s razor sharp barb…..

“I am treated as evil by those who feel persecuted because they are not allowed to force me to believe as they do.” — Smart Bee
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“Beware the man of one book.” — St. Thomas Aquinas

Possibly one of the most ironic statements ever made, yet the irony of it is never a subject of discussion. I can understand why those of a dogmatic nature would be leery of examining such an already, in their eyes, controversial sentiment, as it puts the lie to their entire system of belief. But one would think that those not as severely hampered in their thinking might have noted the irony, and wondered about it enough to say so aloud. But, I can’t think of a single instance of this; though I cannot claim perfect knowledge of religious philosophical works, I have read pretty widely, and have never come across anything that hinted at such a novel idea.

Where is the irony, you ask? Well, to me, it’s pretty clear…. here is a statement that warns against those who would place all of their faith and trust into what is included in only one source. But, the statement is made BY a man who was a high-ranking member of the church of his time (well, they did canonize him…). And the church of which he was such a valued member is the same one that puts the Bible on a pedestal as the only book Mankind needs, or should want, to provide the answers to all of their questions.

In short, St. Thomas was blaspheming the choir, rather than preaching to it. Sometimes I’m surprised that the Pope of the time of St. Thomas didn’t de-canonize the lad for his arrogance. Kind of gives one a clue as to what God wants, doesn’t it? If that is your thing…. Me, I’m going to go read a book….
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“All art is autobiographical. The pearl is the oyster’s autobiography.” — Federico Fellini

Whew! I guess that settles the question in everyone’s mind as to whether or not this process of creating the Pearls of Virtual Wisdom, that we engage in every day here at gigoid’s blog, can be called Art. Or even art. Sr. Fellini can, I think, be considered as enough of an artist to warrant an opinion, and according to him, this is art, if not Art. So, I guess that makes me an autobiographer, in a weird sort of way…. hmm. Well, it’s not what I had thought I’d be, but I guess it will do….. I have to say, it is nice to know that my efforts here are, if nothing else, not a complete affront to the sensibilities of the Muses…. I can always offer them pearls……
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GASP! I have reached the ostensible final segment of today’s offering, and just noticed there is no poetry! Can’t have that…..

All I know of Love
is that Love is all there is.
–Emily Dickinson

There… I feel better now. I’d have hated to start the day with a gaffe like that. But, it worked out well, as Emily is a fitting close to any day’s work. It’s Friday the 13th out there, and it’s always a good day for us Scorpios, so I’m going to go do something unusual today… I’m going out of town for a while to visit a friend.

I’ve been stuck here in my house for about oh, five months or so, and I’m looking forward to surrounding myself with some different colored walls for a time….. plus, my friend and I will no doubt take some time to play some music, so it will be a day of sheer pleasure for me…. music, change of scene, and clean laundry, all in one shot. A good day in the neighborhood, to be sure…..  Y’all take care out there…..


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

gigoid

Kowabunga!