Oatmeal is multi-talented….

Ffolkes,

“The Soul is born old, but it grows young;
that is the comedy of life.
The Body is born young and grows old;
that is life’s tragedy.”

~~ Oscar Wilde ~~

Galway stained glass

Church window, Galway, Ireland…

Hajime…. In the TV series, Northern Exposure, Cris Stevens, the local DJ, made the observation: “There’s a dark side to each and every human soul. We wish we were Obi-Wan Kenobi, and for the most part we are, but there’s a little Darth Vader in all of us. Thing is, this ain’t no either-or proposition. We’re talking about dialectics, the good and the bad merging into us. You can run but you can’t hide. My experience? Face the darkness. Stare it down. Own it. As brother Nietzsche said, being human is a complicated gig. So give that ol’ dark night of the soul a hug. Howl the eternal yes!”

“…being human is a complicated gig.” There are mornings when this phrase assumes a relevance that always amazes. The mental process involved in creating one of these Pearls, as I have discovered of late, is more of a function of will than it is of reasoned effort. The reasons we find to perform those tasks for which we assume responsibility are, of course, personal, not valid for others. This means one must learn to trust oneself, allowing both reason and passion to guide and direct us. When we do, we become both sides of ourselves, which is, ultimately, both our goal, and our raison d’etre, our reason to be….

You may be asking yourself right now, just what is he getting at? Well, that, too, is somewhat personal, but, essentially, what I’m saying is, all you can do is all you can do. In the past weeks, I’ve managed to complete and post a Pearl most days, even those days when it seemed less than productive to even get out of bed. (Yes, there are still demons hanging about….). But, I got it done, and that has, again, saved my sorry ass from falling into the abyss, which exists always, nearby, ready to claim yet another victim to internal fears. In the process, I, necessarily, have been too distracted, too tired, and too unfocused in my mind to perform the other side of blogging, to wit: visiting other sites & exchanging views… In short, I’ve neglected my friends, if only in my own estimation….

I can only offer the excuse above, which, in the larger picture means little, but, in my mind, means a lot. I offer my humble apologies to those who usually see me, and hope to redress my absence in the near future. It’s tough, because, frankly, I’m finding more to engage my attention outside, in the Big Blue Room, a place we all need to remember is our true venue. Cyberspace, while attractive, and quite fascinating, isn’t actually reality, much as it seems it is.

Well, golly! Would ya look at that? Four paragraphs of philosophic blather, bowed, but, unrepentant; cheap at the price, too. I think I’ll go now, & find something better to do. Wanna come with? Okay, follow me….

Shall we Pearl?

“Everything has two handles,
one by which it may be borne; another by which it cannot.”

~~ Epictetus (c. 60 AD) — Enchiridion, xliii ~~

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loreena

Last night, I watched this video, describing the elements and processes involved in putting on a tour, as well as the mindset required to do it her own way. It’s a fascinating story, with the added bonus of a number of most excellent performances from live concerts and pre-concert sound checks… The process, as related, reminded me very much of the food catering business, which is essentially the same exact process…. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did….

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Loreena Mckennitt
A Moveable Musical Feast

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Comedy_Tragedy

Off the proverbial cuff….

I never meant to kill that period of time,
it didn’t give me any choice.
It tried to hem me in without reason, or rhyme,
refused me any vote, or any voice.

You have to admit, I buried it deep and fast,
just as if I cared.
I knew, though, it would never last,
or ever be fully repaired.

No news, no pictures can bring it back,
once is all we get.
No pleas of public good, or even public lack;
in stone the past is set.

Futuristic visions now occupy my dreams,
I’m ready to go on.
Look! It fills up the screen, and it gleams!
Where’s the moment I’m sitting on?

Now, I remembered, at long, long last,
is all we really can hold.
Every moment goes by so bloody fast,
we’d best fill them all with beauty, warm and bold.

~~ gigoid ~~

4/30/2013

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pearls_3

Naked Pearls

Did you know?….

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“…all life is only a set of pictures in the brain, among which there is no
difference betwixt those born of real things and those born of inward
dreamings, and no cause to value the one above the other.”

~~- H. P. Lovecraft, from The Silver Key~~

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“The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past,
not to worry about the future, or not to anticipate troubles,
but to live the present moment wisely and earnestly.”

~~ Buddha ~~

*******

“When we try to pick out anything by itself,
we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.”

~~ Muir’s Law ~~
~~ John Muir, “My First Summer in the Sierra”, 1911, page 110. ~~

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“A man of genius makes no mistakes.
His errors are volitional and are the portals of discovery.”

~~ James Joyce, “Ulysses” ~~

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“Rock gives reality to the otherwise abstract notion of transhuman time.”

~~ Edward Abbey ~~

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All’s fair in love and war – What a contemptible lie.

~~ Lazarus Long ~~

*******

“Some days the dragon wins …”

~~ Subtle Bee ~~

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Though I won’t make any claims as to quality, I can honestly say, it’s done, & done well, if only measured by intent. This, of course, makes it imperative I try again tomorrow. It won’t make today any better, or easier to digest, but, it will get us outta here without more bother. I’ll also say, I hope to go surfing today, but, we’ll see how the waves are running before I make any firm commitments. I can also say, honestly, I don’t think I can do any more damage, so, there’s only one thing left, and that is to say, see ya, ffolkes. I’ll be back; it’s not a threat, though you may take it as such, should you be so inclined. It is, as far as I can make it, a promise, one I intend to do all I can to fulfill…. Ta, then….

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

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

Which is Why….

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

gigoid, the dubious

The *only* duly authorized Computer Curmudgeon.

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

dozer3

À bientôt, mon cherí….

Advertisement

Unwilling to swim, it sank….

Ffolkes,

"If a man take no thought about what is distant, he will find sorrow near at hand."

~~ Confucius ~~

leeloo 1 026

LeeLoo, hard at work.


Good morning.... We are not happy. In fact, we are not we, but, nonetheless, we aren't happy. Nor would you be, if your plans to garner a bit of sleep fell through as thoroughly as have mine. It is now 0129, according to the microwave clock. That's too frigging early, even for me. I had hoped to make it all the way to 0400, but, it seems my body prefers for me to experience TD q4h, whether I am ready for it or not. (TD = tardive dyskinesia, the bane of all opiate junkies and victims of medical abuse, to wit: me....) I don't know about y'all, but I just LOVE being up all fucking night, shaking and pacing! Can you think of a better way to lose weight?.... Well, actually, I can....

Ah, well, not long to go now.... My stay in Hell should only last another eight or nine days. Piece o'cake, ya think? And, hey, I've gone this long without ripping anyones tongue out with my bare hands, so, it's looking good for making it through this without any jail time. Bonus! Mom would have been proud....

Now, of course, I am in even deeper doo-doo.... How can I save this, without resorting to outright cheating, or perverse manipulation of the sort we all must endure from the BRC and those of their ilk? (I sure am glad I'm in a different ilk....) (Exactly what IS an ilk, anyway?.... Never mind....) I suppose I could write a quick fictional opening, but, the reality based crap at the top kind of aced that idea. How about some.... no, better not. That didn't work out well the last time we tried it. Maybe we could.... nope. Forgot; we lost our license for that. Hmm.... this is getting sticky, isn't it?

Ah, I know. I'll break out an old #4. It works every time. It's also our cheapest method for getting us out of here, as it's simply too fast and effective to be illegal, thus saving us a small fortune in legal fees. As those of y'all who have been here before know, y'all should hang on to something solid, and, for heaven's sake, put down your drinks.... Luigi, it's a # 4; hold on!....

Shall we Pearl?....

"Grief can take care of itself, but to get the full value of joy you must have somebody to divide it with." -- Mark Twain

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

    White Rabbit mode kicked in, for some reason; hence, the default musical selection for today reverts to our standard.... Enjoy!....


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Classical Music

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220px-Pogo_-_Earth_Day_1971_poster

Pogo, by Walt Kelly


Those among you who have read the book "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance" by Robert Pirsig will know what I mean when I say I've been on a personal chautauqua, seeking the path to my own center of being. It's been a long journey, as I had apparently wandered much further than I had imagined, which, when one stops to think, is only natural, given the whole concept of losing one's way.... Any who, I'm getting closer, and can feel both poetry and prose percolating, with the promise of copious floods of nonsense, verbal trickery, and a bit of philosophy yet to come. For now, in place of the rant which would usually grace this section (a bit o ego there, yes?...), here is a nine-star pearl, with some thoughts on how it all got to be the way it is today, in this crazy old mode of existence we call Reality.... Enjoy, ffolkes....

"Humankind cannot stand very much reality. -- T.S. Eliot

"And it came to pass that in the hands of the ignorant, the words of the bible were used to beat plowshares into swords..." -- Alan Watts

"Prejudice is the child of ignorance." -- William Hazlitt

"The fact that an opinion has been widely held is no evidence whatever that it is not utterly absurd; indeed in view of the silliness of the majority of mankind, a widespread belief is more likely to be foolish than sensible." -- Bertrand Russell, Marriage and Morals

"The entire world is being driven insane by this single phrase: 'My religion alone is true.'" -- Ramakrishna, Hindu saint & reformer

"Most of the dogmatic religions have exhibited a perverse talent for taking the wrong side on the most important concepts in the material universe, from  the structure of the solar system to the origin of man." -- George Gaylord Simpson

"Any religion...is forever in danger of petrifaction into mere ritual and habit, though ritual and habit be essential to religion." -- T.S. Eliot, Selected Essays, 1927.

"Before you have sex you have to be elected to a high government position." -- Zippy

"Grown men, he told himself, in flat contradiction of centuries of accumulated  evidence about the way grown men behave, do not behave like this." -- Douglas Adams

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Comedy_Tragedy

When life calls, ready or not....

Memories are all we have sometimes
to keep our sanity intact,
with learned phrases and subtle rhymes
lessening life's vicious, vibrant impact.

Presently all seems composed and intent
in stark contrast to hollow day,
forlorn patchwork emotions of unheralded bent,
fill up night's bower, leaving hell to pay.

Such vigorous and elevated temper
brings us rare moments to ponder,
filled with lessons all need to remember
lest base perception lose valued wonder.

Laugh loud when entropy sticks fast
leaving shameless anger in its wake.
Let bygones pass quietly into the past
reaping only what is left to take.

Final words of wise imagination
tell us living well's the best revenge, it appears
ever eluding choirs and congregations
finally finding home, never buried in tears.

~~ gigoid ~~


Written 9/10/2015.

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Yin-Yang-symbol-sun-and-moon

    Today's final old-school pearl speaks to our humanity, and, how to go about being the best human one can be.... Pay attention, ffolkes; this one is bound to be on the Quiz....

He not busy being born
Is busy dying.

~~ Bob Dylan ~~


"Anyone who has had a bull by the tail knows five or six more things than someone who hasn't." -- Mark Twain

"No one can see their reflection in running water. It is only in still water that we can see." -- Taoist Proverb

"Down in their hearts, wise men know this truth: the only way to help yourself is to help others." -- Elbert Hubbard

"You can't always get what you want, but if you try sometimes you get what you need." -- The Rolling Stones

"In theory there is nothing to hinder our following what we are taught; but in life there are many things to draw us aside." -- Epictetus -- Discourses, Book i, Chap. xxvi

"No amount of ability is of the slightest avail without honor." -- Andrew Carnegie

"I am enough of an artist to draw freely upon my imagination. Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world." -- Albert Einstein

"It's like brother Nietzsche said--being human is a complicated gig, so give that dark night of the soul a hug and howl the eternal yes." -- Chris, the Philosophical DJ on the TV show, Northern Exposure

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Since it's taken nearly three days to get this done, I'd best take it the way it now, before I decide to start over (no worries, not gonna happen....). In point of fact, I must go out today, into the BBR, to take LeeLoo to her first visit to the vet.... No telling when, but, I will be back.... Meanwhile, stay alert, keep your powder dry, and question authority; you know, the basics.... See ya....

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

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

Which is Why....

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

gigoid, the dubious

The *only* duly authorized Computer Curmudgeon.

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

"SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!"- Oscar the Grouch

dozer3


À bientôt, mon cherí....

Truncated modules sustain less karmic damage….

Ffolkes,
Unseen, unheard, melodies of haunting beauty didn’t play, yet echoed hollowly down the empty hall, uneasy and cruel, just as if invited to sup with the family. Smitten with the pungent sight of naked ambition, all those with a wilted rose, sly ambition banked to a glow, smiled with careful cheer, swamping the object of their devotion with a sea of broken lies. No one speaks, no one cares, no one asks, yet, the music continues, playing silently, unseen, while the night slips further along toward the day……

Spending the mornings in my head can be a strange experience, especially when I wake up with stuff such as the above passage floating in front of my inner eye, insisting on being transcribed onto the page before I’ve even had a sip of life-giving coffee. I wouldn’t mind as much if they would at least wait until AFTER I’ve gotten dressed, at least a robe and slippers, before they set up such a clamorous bid for attention. But, noooooo, they have to start NOW, often shouting at me before I’m fully standing….. just like a damn two year-old, no impulse control. Makes me want to paddle their diaper….

See, I told you it could get strange….. let’s avoid any further nonsense, and Pearl, shall we?…..
___________________________________

Amor, ch’al cor gentil ratto s’apprende,
prese costui de la bella persona
che mi fu tolta; e ‘l modo ancor m’offende.
Amor, ch’a nullo amato amar perdona,
mi prese del costui piacer si` forte,
che, come vedi, ancor non m’abbandona.
Amor condusse noi ad una morte.

Love, which is quickly kindled in a gentle heart,
seized this one for the fair form
that was taken from me-and the way of it affects me still.
Love, which absolves no loved one from loving,
seized me so strongly with delight in him,
that, as you see, it does not leave me even now.
Love brought us to one death.
— Dante, La Divina Commedia: Inferno V, vv. 100-106

I have never made it all the way through Dante’s masterpiece(s); time and circumstance have conspired to keep that from happening over the years. But every now and again, I come across parts of it, and have to say, I am more than just a little impressed. I don’t speak or read Italian, though having Spanish, a little French, and a little Latin, from whence all three languages sprang, it isn’t totally incomprehensible. I can usually figure out the subject under discussion, at least, of what I read in that language, although any deeper meaning or details are mostly indecipherable.

But one doesn’t need to understand every word to enjoy passages such as this. Read aloud, the poetry assumes a new power, aided by scansion and meter, faultless in its structure and rhyme. Read silently, meaning almost jumps into the mind, but is made moot by the beauty of the verse’s sounds as they strike the welcoming ears of the imagination.

Then, of course, one turns to the translation…. and the amazement deepens. Though not as structurally sound, the sheer strength of the meaning that is now clear turns what could have been mundane into the spectacular. I don’t know who made the translations I’ve seen, but they are indeed masterful translator(s), and excellent poet(s) in their own right. The scope and power of the full concepts that Dante put into this, his life’s crowning achievement, comes through clearly in the translated work, and easily lives up to the high standard set by the original piece in Italian….. Good stuff, as the boys downtown would say…..
___________________________________

“He who knows that enough is enough will always have enough.” — Lao Tsu

On certain occasions, as I am lying on my bed, on my back, I can fall into that twilight-zone-like state of drowsiness that steals over the entire body/mind at such moments, just before falling into sleep. Not every time, but significantly often enough, at that precise moment, my entire nervous system experiences a powerful surge of energy, emanating from the base of my neck and spreading instanter to every square nanometer of the network that suffuses and permeates everywhere in the body.

Every muscle in my body gives a huge jerk, whether contracting or expanding is unclear, as it happens so quickly that it is impossible to tell anything other than having just bounced two inches into the air with the force of the muscular spasms.  It begins, full power, then ceases instantly, with a strong impression of a silent bang! The experience has never repeated in the same day.

If that isn’t odd enough taken alone, there is also the surprising fact that the mind/body never seems surprised that it happened, feels no tension or panic that one might expect at such an unexpected shock to the system, and the state of drowsiness is usually easy to fall back into, with sleep following momentarily.  It’s as if the entire instant spasm served as a purge of the energy that had accumulated, energy that was blocking my path to the other side of consciousness, clearing the entire system of unwanted and unnecessary dross, rather than being some sort of epileptic seizure-like activity that places stress on the system, as might be otherwise surmised. One of these days, I’ll remember to ask my doctor about it when I’m in there for something else (knock on wood…). Not much I can see to do about it until I know more; worry has killed more folks than ever bled to death…

What, you may ask, does this have to do with knowing one’s self well enough to not want more than enough? Nothing. The quote was there already when this train of thought interrupted the movie I was watching last night, and I needed a place to write this down. Don’t fret, I’ll find the appropriate quote, illustrating the last line (the only part that really has anything important to consider…) and add it here at the end. What Lao Tzu said doesn’t really need my help anyway…. it can stand alone just fine…..

“It’s like brother Nietzsche said–being human is a complicated gig, so give that dark night of the soul a hug and howl the eternal yes.” — perfectly attributed to Anonymous in my source.

(Honest… and it was also the very first quote that came in front of me, I swear…. serendipity strikes again!)

(Besides, this sounds just like something Ken Kesey would have attributed to Neal Cassady, or better yet, Jack Kerouac….. betcha….)

(Okay, outside, but solid, chance it’s from an obscure Allen Ginsberg poem, and Kesey stole it…. no way to tell now, eh? Huh, maybe Google knows….)

(Boy, trust Google, folks… it knew, instantly, that the above is part of a short dialogue by Chris, the DJ on the TV show, “Northern Exposure”, whose character was wont to such outbursts of philosophy….. the entire quote is worth seeing, and is included below for your perusal…..)

“There’s a dark side to each and every human soul. We wish we were Obi-Wan Kenobi, and for the most part we are, but there’s a little Darth Vadar in all of us. Thing is, this ain’t no either/or proposition. We’re talking about dialectics, the good and the bad merging into us. You can run but you can’t hide. My experience? Face the darkness, stare it down. Own it. As brother Nietzsche said, being human is a complicated gig. Give that old dark night of the soul a hug. Howl the eternal yes!”
___________________________________

An elderly Chinese woman had two large pots, each hung on the ends of a pole which she carried across her neck.
One of the pots had a crack in it while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water.
At the end of the long walks from the stream to the house, the cracked pot arrived only half full.
For a full two years this went on daily, with the woman bringing home only one and a half pots of water.
Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments.
But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection, and miserable that it could only do half of what it had been made to do..
After two years of what it perceived to be bitter failure, it spoke to the woman one day by the stream.
‘I am ashamed of myself, because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your house.’
The old woman smiled, ‘Did you notice that there are flowers on your side of the path, but not on the other pot’s side?’
‘That’s because I have always known about your flaw, so I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back, you water them.’
For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate the table.
Without you being just the way you are, there would not be this beauty to grace the house.’
Each of us has our own unique flaw. But it’s the cracks and flaws we each have that make our lives together so very interesting and rewarding..
You’ve just got to take each person for what they are and look for the good in them.
SO, to all of my cracked pot friends, have a great day and remember to smell the flowers on your side of the path!

Gotta love this! A story of perfect love, and perfect understanding of how the universe fits together with no visible seams….. don’t over-think this one, just enjoy it…… and spread it around, like the cracked pot you are……
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“There’s nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and open a vein.” — W. W. “Red” Smith

I’m beginning to understand this outlook toward writing more as each day passes, and the struggle to keep my Muse awake and interested in what I’m doing begins to tax my ingenuity to the limit of its ever-growing, yet still modest capacity. In fact, it is that struggle that keeps that capacity growing, always pushing me to exceed what has been written before, never settling for good enough, always wanting better.

There are times, all-too-often, when I sit and stare at the screen for what seems to be forever and two days, searching desperately through my head for something about which I can rant, or describe, or remember, or make up, that will satisfy the unending pressure I put on myself to create a worthy, stimulating piece of literature, one that will stand up to the test of time. And should I succeed in that quest, the net effect on my soul is the same as if I had copiously bled until I was nearly dead……. might just be easier to open up the vein, and have done with it…..
___________________________________

Spirit is the first differentiation of SPACE; and Matter the first differentiation of Spirit. That, which is neither Spirit nor matter -that is IT- the Causeless CAUSE of Spirit and Matter, which are the Cause of Cosmos. And THAT we call the ONE LIFE or the Intra-Cosmic Breath.
— Book of Dzyan (B.C. 3000?)

So, I’m sitting here, at a computer that has more RAM, and a larger hard disk memory than were available in the entire world just 50 years ago. There is more information listed in here, somewhere or another, than was commonly available in entire libraries at that time, and if one adds in the possible extensions to that information that are instantly available online, even the Library of Congress begins to look like the library of a simple country farmer in the 1800’s….. With all this information at my fingertips, I come across this quote, reputedly from a document that is more than 5000 years old. 5000 years old. That is a period of time that essentially covers the entire period of written human history; the Book of Dyzan is no doubt one of the earliest books ever produced, at least of those that have survived to today.

Taken at face value, without knowing the source, this statement could easily have been made today (from the sound of it, by a yogi sadhu, a disciple of the Dalai Lama, or a Taoist scholar with a flair for humor and metaphor). (Plus, it must be noted, whoever wrote this most likely did not indicate the need for using ALL CAPS to signify special meaning….. no keyboards, eh? Blame that on the faux intellectual geek who transcribed it….) It is clear that the person who composed this was definitely a scholar in his own time; the structure of the language, and the thoughts behind the expression in that language, whatever tongue it may have been, indicate a depth of education beyond the ordinary, even for today.

When one stops to consider that this visionary definition of perceived Reality was uttered and written down over half a millennium in our past, one must stand in respectful awe of the mind from which it sprang. The world of 5000 years ago was, indubitably, much different than today’s world; if nothing else, the knowledge society has gathered over that time regarding the physical world, and how it works, has altered society in innumerable ways, and gives today’s citizens many distinct advantages in terms of the effort required for survival. Yet this person, man or woman, created a statement of their vision of Reality that definitely stands the test of Time, as well as the test of how well it can be considered to be relevant to Reality, as far as the nature of that concept is understood to be consensual for all who reside there……
___________________________________

I’m hoping that there is some sort of positive karmic value to the effort I put into this each day; I don’t see any particular reason it should be so, but there is also no apparent reason it should not be, either. To certain philosophical disciplines, this would seem to indicate that this is most likely an activity that is neutral in that respect.

But, that does not take into account the power of Murphy in Reality, or the value for me in making the effort with the intent toward right action, even if it fails in its intended purpose. With those in mind, it makes sense to hedge our bets, and ease out of the game before it gets more expensive than I can afford….. and if you followed that, you’ve been reading my work probably too much….. 🙂   I had a good time this morning….. hopefully you will, too, when you stumble into my lair, unsuspecting of what is to follow….. Y’all take care out there…..


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

gigoid

Kowabunga!