On the thirteenth of forever….

Ffolkes,

“The mountain remains unmoved at seeming defeat by the mist.”

~~ Rabindranath Tagore ~~

laocoon-and-his-sons-1348967845_b

Laocoön and His Sons

Image from Wikipedia via Google Images

Hajime…. Putting this Pearl together has taken me about two weeks, mostly waiting for parts of me to heal sufficiently to type. During much of this period, it seems my life was ‘farmed out’ by Murphy, to Eris, that ancient nemesis of the Greeks. Who is Eris? Ah, you know her, even if you don’t…. Allow me to elucidate….

“:Eris: /e’ris/ n. The Greek goddess of Chaos, Discord, Confusion, and Things You Know Not Of; her name was latinized to Discordia and she was worshiped by that name in Rome. Not a very friendly deity in the Classical original, she was reinvented as a more benign personification of creative anarchy starting in 1959 by the adherents of {Discordianism} and has since been a semi-serious subject of veneration in several `fringe’ cultures, including hackerdom. See {Discordianism}, {Church of the SubGenius}. — from The on-line Hacker Jargon File V423

As may be surmised, it’s been different around here. Enough so it’s given me some new epiphanies to assimilate into my personal files, some of which are quite penetrating in their effects. Of course, they’re only of value if I take them in, so, we’ll see how that goes, eh? In the meantime, I have for you today a complete five part Pearl, with old-school galore, some great music/entertainment, a relevant exploration of modern times, and, a pretty decent poem…. I’m happy with it, so, y’all, in spite of any possible trepidation, will be happy with it, too, should you make it all the way to the rather distant end. To save us all a bit ot time, we’ll get right to that, okay? Okay….

Shall we pearl?….

“A wise man,
recognizing that the world is but an illusion,
does not act as if it is real,
so he escapes the suffering.”

~~ Buddha ~~

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JANIS_JOPLIN_pearl_album_cover__

Pearl

We lost Pearl in 1970. Though with us for only a short while, her spirit shone bright. A friend’s blog acknowledged her passing, which showed some synchronicity, as I had already decided she was just right for this Pearl. Here is a live performance, one of only a few we have to see on You Tube. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do….

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As this Pearl evolved, it grew. Go figure. In the process, I decided to make it epic enough to be able to stop ranting altogether. It’s a manifesto, so to speak, of all I think is real, and true for today’s world. I don’t need to keep beating a horse that’s not coming back alive, so, this may be the very last one. It’s pretty complete, I think. You tell me….

Plato-Aristotle

“As scarce as truth is, the supply has always been in excess of the demand.”

~~ Josh Billings ~~

I suppose it is fortunate, for me, writing requires enough focus of attention to distract me from a lot of perceptive stimuli from external, or even internal sources. In short, I can concentrate sufficiently I don’t mind the 96º heat, as long as I’m perched within five feet of my only fan. I also can keep from thinking about pain, in my shoulders, hips, and back, or my hunger, from dieting, or any of the other silly little things we use to keep from actually thinking about stuff we don’t want to face, or deal with, or are painfully uncomfortable. That makes this act one of survival, as well as one requiring some rather merciless honesty, self- and, otherwise; without it, I don’t believe it will be worth it.

I am exceedingly weary of living in a culture/society which is based on deception, exemplifying what I believe to be the worst part of human nature, i.e. the ability to put our humanity aside to pursue our personal gain or agenda. To a small extent, we do it naturally, as a survival tool. However, in a larger sense, most of us don’t always base life on our own agenda; we feel connected to, and responsible to the rest of humanity. But, those who do choose self over species, as their primary focus of living, throughout history, have been allowed to order our society, based on false information and deception.

At this point, I feel I should explain my assertions, which are, in essence, three. My observations and study have led me to realize these three concepts, held to be true by the great majority of humanity, are all false in their basic assumptions of reality. This allows a distance between what is real, and what is seen to be real. This basic disconnection from true perception, in my mind, is what has caused most of the trouble and misery our species’ history has experienced for more than ten thousand years. The three concepts to which I refer are religion, money, and government.

Intermezzo:

At this point in this exploration, it becomes clear I have bitten off quite a bit more than can be adequately addressed in a single attempt, no matter how clear, or solid the connection between the three relevant elements. In truth, nobody will much care, anyway, but, that is irrelevant, as well. What remains relevant, to me, in essence, is to relate just how I think these three ideas/concepts/delusions have kept humanity from achieving our potential, and, in the process, the potential of our entire world. Together, given the nature of the human beast, the potential godhead, these three ideas have provided the means for our complete undoing, as a species, and, as a viable form of life.

I guess that’s a bit depressing, isn’t it? Okay, I’ll stop for now. I was going to stop ranting altogether, but, perhaps such an assertion would be premature. For now, let us go on, to this…..

During the research period while composing this, the following extensive collection of old-school pearls was amassed. Let this suffice for any further indictment of the three villains of human history. Besides, this just shows, I’m not the only one who has had second thoughts about all the bullshit we’ve been fed from the cradle. I’ve put them into three categories, for simple clarity…. Enjoy, ffolkes.

And, please. Think about it all, will you? Thanks….

*****

“In the beginning Man created God; and in the image of Man created he him.”

~~ Ian Anderson ~~

~~ Jethro Tull, Aqualung ~~

“The mistake began when God was created in a male image. Of course, women would see Him that way, but men should have been gentlemen enough, remembering their mothers, to make God a woman! But the God of Gods–the Boss–has always been a man. That makes life so perverted, and death so unnatural. We should have imagined life as created in the birth-pain of God the Mother. Then we would understand why we, Her children, have inherited pain, for we would know that our life’s rhythm beats from Her great heart, torn with the agony of love and birth. And we would feel that death meant reunion with Her, a passing back into Her substance, blood of Her blood again, peace of Her peace! Now wouldn’t that be more logical and satisfying than having God a male whose chest thunders with egotism and is too hard for tired heads and thoroughly comfortless?” — Eugene O’Neill, “Strange Interlude” [1928], Act II

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

“Any system of religion which has anything in it which offends the mind of a child cannot be a true system.” — Thomas Paine

“Some foolish men declare that a Creator made the world. The doctrine that the world was created is ill-advised, and should be rejected. If God created the world, where was He before creation? How could God have made the world without any raw material? If you say He made this first, and then the world, you are faced with an endless regression … Know that the world is uncreated, as time itself is, without beginning and end.” — The Mahapurana, Jinasena

“God is an invention of Man.
So the nature of God is only a shallow mystery.
The deep mystery is the nature of Man.”

~~ Nanrei Kobori, — late Abbot of the Temple of the Shining Dragon, Kyoto, Japan ~~

*****

“All paid jobs absorb and degrade the mind.”

~~ Aristotle ~~

“The value of money has an objective regulator only when it is linked to a real commodity, like gold, itself requiring the cost of human labor to be produced. By comparison, the value of inconvertible paper money has no objective regulator, its marginal cost of production being nearly zero.” — Lewis E. Lehrman (See? Nothing real… Only what we agree to hold so….)

“As far as I’m concerned, if something is so complicated that you can’t explain it in 10 seconds, then it’s probably not worth knowing anyway.” — Calvin

“I refuse to believe that trading recipes is silly. Tuna-fish casserole is at least as real as corporate stock.” — Barbara Grizzuti Harrison

“What do they call a comedian who doesn’t get any laughs? A philosopher.” — Phil Proctor

*****

“Power, like a desolating pestilence,
Pollutes whate’er it touches…”

~~ Percy Bysshe Shelley ~~

“It’s said that ‘power corrupts’, but actually it’s more true that power attracts the corruptible. The sane are usually attracted by other things than power. When they do act, they think of it as service, which has limits. The tyrant, though, seeks mastery, for which he is insatiable, implacable.” — David Brin, The Postman

“Every nation ridicules other nations, and all are right.” — Arthur Schopenhauer

“It is proof of a base and low mind for one to wish to think with the masses or majority, merely because the majority is the majority. Truth does not change because it is, or is not, believed by a majority of the people.” — Giordano Bruno (1548- burned at the stake, 1600)

“As formerly we suffered from crimes, so now we suffer from laws.” — Tacitus

“He who joyfully marches to music rank and file, has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would surely suffice. This disgrace to civilization should be done away with at once. Heroism at command, how violently I hate all this, how despicable and
ignoble war is; I would rather be torn to shreds than be a part of so base an action. It is my conviction that killing under the cloak of war is nothing but an act of murder.” — Albert Einstein

“In the part of this universe that we know there is great injustice, and often the good suffer, and often the wicked prosper, and one hardly knows which of those is the more annoying.” — Bertrand Russell

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Comedy_Tragedy

I am working on a poem, which seems to be leaking out in a chaotic fashion; it looks good, though, so we’ll let it play out as it pleases. Here’s one that fits, today, and often. Especially when it is followed by an old-school pearl that carries its title…. Keep reading….

Notes of process and program…

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

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

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

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

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

~~ gigoid ~~

1/3/2013

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pearls_3

Naked Pearls

“Notes Of Process And Program…”

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“It seems like once people grow up, they have no idea what’s cool.”

~~ Calvin & Hobbes ~~

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“We must beware of whatever insights we have into ourselves.
Our self-knowledge annoys and paralyzes our daimon
– this is where we should look for the reason Socrates wrote nothing.”

~~ E.M. Cioran ~~

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“”Human beings are perhaps never more frightening
than when they are convinced beyond doubt that they are right.”

~~ Laurens Van der Post, The Lost World of the Kalahari (1958) ~~

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“Be prepared to go mad with fixed rule and method.”

~~ Horace (65-8 B.C.) ~~

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“Honor isn’t about making the right choices.
It’s about dealing with the consequences.”

~~ Midori Koto~~

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“Reality is in the eye of the beholder.”

~~ The Keeper, from Stargate ~~

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“When I was a lark, I sang;
when I was a worm, I devoured.”

~~ Theodore Roethke ~~

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“I’m pretty tired. Think I’ll go home now.”

~~ Forrest Gump ~~

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Well, ffolkes. There you have it. Not only do you have it, but, you’ve got ALL of it. I don’t believe I can do this any better, but, what the hell? I’ll be back again to try. Could take a bit of time, but, it seems the wait might be worth the effort. See y’all tomorrow, as long as the sun comes up….. Pretty good odds, I’d say….

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 -- 9949

À bientôt, mon cherí….

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Use all the teflon you can find….

Ffolkes,

“A man is not aware of his virtues (if any).

Nevertheless, one hopes that they exist.”

~~ Edward Abbey ~~

superearth1-800x456

Artist rendition of possible Superearth planet found in far reaches of Sol System

Image from:

 http://nerdreactor.com/2015/12/11/scientists-discover-a-new-planet-theyve-deemed-as-a-super-earth-in-our-solar-system/



Hajime…. At 0500 this morning, I was given a reminder of the newest duty I’ve chosen. I was awakened at that time by whiskers tickling my nose, followed by a loud purring, as Leelu sniffed at my face to wake me. The purr began when I opened my eyes to see what tickled me…. Thus notified she was ready to be up, and training. Heaving a great SIGH, I arose, & stumbled to the coffee maker to switch it on, as she mewled madly for the morning play time, dropping her crumpled paper at my feet, and looking at me expectantly…. What can one do?….

She got hungry after a few tosses & returns, and is eating, so, I’m going to cut this short, so we can, maybe, get this posted before she requires further attention…. Trust me, it’s not easy being at the beck and call of a 7 lb. princess…. But, she picked me, out of seven billion people, so, whattayagonnado, eh?….. Let’s go to the oyster beds, while we can….

Shall we Pearl?….

“We’re not talking about the same thing,” he said. “For you the world is weird because if you’re not bored with it you’re at odds with it. For me the world is weird because it is stupendous, awesome, mysterious, unfathomable; my interest has been to convince you that you must accept responsibility for being here, in this marvelous world, in this marvelous desert, in this marvelous time. I wanted to convince you that you must learn to make every act count, since you are going to be here for only a short while, in fact, too short for witnessing all the marvels of it.” — Don Juan

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Crosby_Stills_Nash_and_Young_1970

Crosby, Stills, Nash, & Young in 1970

Image from en.wikipedia.com via Google Images


Probably, nobody alive hasn’t heard of this group…. Four of the best singer-songwriters alive who got together for a time, to make music still unequaled in quality and impact by any one of them individually…. Their innate harmonic blend of voices created songs no one who heard them will ever forget…. Let’s enjoy some of it, live from Golden Gate Park, their old stomping grounds in SF…. Abondanza, ffolkes!….

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Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young 11/03/91 – Golden Gate Park

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Dont keep calm

SOCIALISM:
   You have two cows.
 Give one to your neighbour.

COMMUNISM:
   You have two cows.
   Give both to the government.
The government gives you milk.

CAPITALISM:

   You sell one cow and buy a bull.

FASCISM:
   You have two cows. 
Give milk to the government.
   The government sells it.

NAZISM:
   The government shoots you and takes the cows.

NEW DEALISM:
   The government shoots one cow,
   milks the other,
and pours the milk down the sink.

ANARCHISM:
   Keep the cows.
Steal another one.
Shoot the government.

CONSERVATISM:
   Freeze the milk.
Embalm the cows.

~~ Polly Sye Bee ~~


This was yesterday’s third offering from Smart Bee, and by the time I finished reading the list, and could catch my breath from laughing uproariously, I knew I’d found today’s opening lines for this section…. Since laughing so hard put me in too good a mood to rant, we’ll go with the following two most excellent pieces from an archived Pearl, suggested a day or two ago, at the bottom of the page on ECR…. They go together, as it happened to occur that day…I think you’ll enjoy them; I know I did…. It isn’t exactly about the quoted subject, but, rather about those who must deal with the governments as described…. We do lead off with a statement from a politician, though….

Both pearls from 12/1/2012:

From Section the First:

“I am certain that after the dust of centuries has passed over our cities, we, too, will be remembered not for victories or defeats in battle or in politics but for our contributions to the human spirit.” — former US President John F. Kennedy

At last! A worthy pearl! JFK, like the current President, was a superb public speaker, “Ich bin ein Berliner” notwithstanding, and whether he wrote his own words, or relied on his speech writers, he delivered, arguably, some of the most memorable, and insightful, aphorisms in US political and social history. The above statement is a perfect example, as he expresses a sentiment that can only be applauded, if not verified. I say verified because  there is not a lot of verification from the past that history remembers anything BUT the battles. But, one can hope….

Actually, I believe what Jack said here very strongly, in the sense that there are different histories that are remembered, most of which become altered in some way over time, as does all memory. The great teachers and philosophers who have lived have left their mark on the world in more ways than always show, in spite of the records of their deeds not always surviving intact. But, throughout history, there have been men, and women, who have done much to advance the human condition, whose words and deeds were never seen, and never recorded, but, nonetheless. whose effects still ripple down the river of time.

Some of the great minds in history, such as Lao Tzu, Zoroaster, Genghis Khan, Gautama Buddha, Jesus of Nazareth, Mohammed, Aristotle, Socrates, Plato, and many others, all made such advances in the human spirit, and their ideas keep proving their worth every day by their relativity to modern society. Men like Leonardo da Vinci, whose genius was so bright it shines even today, and modern philosopher/scientists such as Albert Einstein, and Stephen Hawking, have advanced that human spirit as much as anyone.

I’m not being as eloquent as I’d wish for such a deep subject…. What I’m trying to get to here is that we all, each and every one of us, have the power and opportunity to do the same as these historical figures, to advance the human spirit, just by the way we live our lives. What the philosophers say, and write, and the wisdom they pass on, is all very good, and a lesson to the rest of us…. But, what the average person does every day in their lives is just as important to the future as any scientific breakthrough, because what they do will determine what their children learn, and THAT is where the advancement really takes place, in the moments of teaching that happens every moment for children, and their adult teachers.

Living a life of integrity, with honesty and duty as the watchwords for action, is the best teaching method there is; to provide a good example for a child holds no less promise for mankind than all the work of all the genius’ of all time. How each one of us approaches life will, in the end, determine what happens to our species as a whole. It isn’t easy, especially given all of the people in society who do NOT wish to have any part of advancing anything but their own interests…. and especially when so many of those kinds of people are in positions of authority. But, it can be done, and is done, every day, by millions of men and women of good spirit…. They are truly the future of mankind, and, if there is any hope for survival, it lies in their honest hands….

“So live that you can look any man in the eye and tell him to go to hell.”

~~ Smart Bee ~~


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From Section the Third:

“The sage wears clothes of coarse cloth but carries jewels in his bosom; He knows himself but does not display himself; He loves himself but does not hold himself in high esteem. Thus he rejects the latter and takes the former.” — Lao-Tzu

In spite of how it must appear, there is a small degree of organization to this blog’s contents. Most days I try to make sure that the first and third sections, while possibly related, are essentially about different concepts. The second section is, of course, reserved for whatever poetry strikes my fancy that day, whether classic, humorous, or original (Though it does seem that my recent outpouring of original poems has run dry, I don’t think I’m done with that, yet…..).  It seems to work for me…. well enough, at least, to keep my internal critics quiet most of the time.

Today, it seems that most of what I’m seeing for pearls are related somehow to what I spoke of peripherally in today’s first section, to wit: the importance of integrity in human life. Integrity…. hmm…. not the precise word, or the characteristic I am thinking of, actually; it’s more than merely integrity. I suppose one could say the concept to which I’m referring is too mystical an idea to be presented clearly, and not be too far off the mark….

However, not being one to ignore a challenge to my vocabulary, I’ll take a few unseen moments here and find the correct word to facilitate further discussion, because, hey, if I can’t, no discussion, right? Right…. Be right back…. instantly, by all you will know and see…..  Well, the challenge is a strong one, and I think best answered with more than one word to describe what I’m trying to say. Those words are all contained in Axiom #7 of Peruaosophy, to wit:

“Do your Duty. Honor the Truth. Respect Life. Share your Love. “


I know that it is my own philosophy, and some may think that is cheating, but, not so. All that I hold to be true is in that axiom, and it represents the four cornerstones of my personal foundation. I find that when I am able to live up to all of these concepts,  able to use their direction in guiding my actions, my life is much smoother, and my moments of joy are plentiful, to balance the pain that life brings all of us in turn. This, to me, is the best way to advance the human condition, little by little, with the efforts of each man and woman adding its weight to the forward momentum.

Yes, the actions and discoveries that the best of history’s minds bring to us are wonderful, and work to make the lives of every human better…. It is the everyday efforts of each man, though, that takes that wisdom and turns it into reality, by using ideas, and integrity, to add their experience to that of the rest of society. Since there is a large number of folks who do NOT subscribe to this kind of ethical behavior, choosing to make their own self-interest their primary concern, it is the duty of those who do believe in these ideas to carry them out as best they may, so that the world can retain some semblance of harmony. It doesn’t always work, and, in fact, is in constant jeopardy of not working at all, but, it is the only way that will make the changes our society needs to survive…. which is another discussion for another time…..

“And now there is merely silence, silence, silence, saying all we did not know.”

~~ William Rose Benet ~~


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~~ Haiku ~~

Often I don’t see
any reason to exist.
Still, I’m glad I do.

~~ gigoid ~~

12/12/15

Comedy_Tragedy

Blithely Untitled

A poem came to me today, willy, nilly,
along with a sharp blow to the head.
Since it left me feeling just a bit silly,
anything that rhymes should lessen the dread.

Manifesting destiny into a small, insidious group
we push on toward sanity, concentrating hard.
Full engaging moments spent navigating the loop
shall ever make a difference to victims found in the yard.

Still corpses of creatures, straight out of nightmare
fill up the corners of our tortured minds.
While ever saddened, the iconic male, most debonair,
gazes softly, ironically, at all the mutual interest he finds.

Moronic public statutes compel outbreaks of sanity,
responding to momentary impulses toward inducing peace.
Still, the motions get completed, in fertile stages of inanity
while the bulk of our inmates can find no surcease.

Reluctant motivation to continue is unbound,
striving to ascertain how far there yet remains to go.
No precognitive guesswork will make any less of a sound
to soften the final strains, or teach us to truly know.


~~ gigoid ~~


2/7/2014


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Glasgow-Greenock Port 041

Sunrise ~~ Sunset


Just as with the photo (my own, taken somewhere off the coast of Scotland), I don’t really know, nor can I tell from what I see, exactly what is happening here…. I do know when the photo was taken, since I was the only one there at the time, but, unless one is enough of a polymath to have already totaled up the available clues to know, it can’t be known for sure which time of day it was taken…. The same issue applies to today’s final, old-school pearl, as I don’t have a single clue as to what it all means…. The process of choosing them was rather unconscious; I just clicked on each as it appeared, and fitted it into whatever weird shape my mind was creating…. It works, and I still don’t know why; though beginning and ending with some elegance, most of them are just weird, if as true as the day is long enough…. If y’all have any ideas, feel free to tell me, as it can only help….

“There is a certain majesty in simplicity which is far above all the quaintness of wit.”

~~ Alexander Pope ~~


“If you take something apart and put it back together often enough, you will eventually have two of them.” — Rap’s Law of Inanimate Reproduction

“Feeling good about government is like looking on the bright side of any catastrophe. When you quit looking on the bright side, the catastrophe is still there.” — P. J. O’Rourke, Parliament of Whores (1991)

“Being a politician is like being a football coach: you have to be smart enough to understand the game, but dumb enough to think it’s important.” — Eugene McCarthy ( I get this one; he WAS a politician….)

“Money, it turned out, was exactly like sex. You thought of nothing else if you didn’t have it and thought of other things if you did.” — James Baldwin (1924-1987)

“The whole problem can be stated quite simply by asking, ‘Is there a  meaning to music?’ My answer would be, ‘Yes.’ And ‘Can you state in so many words what the meaning is?”  My answer to that would be, ‘No.’ — Aaron Copland

:FUBAR: n.  The Failed UniBus Address Register in a VAX.  A good example of how jargon can occasionally be snuck past the {suit}s; see {foobar}, and {foo} for a fuller etymology.” — from The on-line Hacker Jargon File V423 (For those with access to the File, the original FUBAR was a military term, probably originally from the Army Corps of Engineers, meaning, precisely, “fucked up beyond all repair”….)

“Gentleman: A man who knows how to play bagpipes — and refrains.” — Fred Tart

“Dum vivimus, vivamus.”

While we live, let us live.

~~ Latin, originally from the coat of arms of one Philip Doddering, D.D ~~

(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dum_vivimus_vivamus),

with other instances noted in literature.


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Hmm…. Later than usual, but, not bad, given the extra duties I must now perform while trying to get posted…. No complaints, because, hey, chosen duty, right?  Besides, it’s done. So, I’ll follow the example set in the intro, and get us out of here in an efficient manner. That works like this: See ya, tomorrow, ffolkes, rain or shine….

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 -- 5012


À bientôt, mon cherí….


North flew East, East turned West; South became irrelevant….

Ffolkes,

Normally, my travelogues feature more artwork, in the sense that I generally post pictures that I’ve taken myself, of the places and people I’ve seen in my ramblings for the day. Since it will be eight or so hours until I actually embark on the ship, which then sets sail at about 4 PM, I am as yet without my camera, which is packed away for the ordeal of getting through the security checkpoint….

I suppose I could have taken a few pix of me and my lady, or my son, who will be driving us today in his limo, but, none of us particularly care for fame, or photos of ourselves, (in my case, there is the danger to the camera itself; my visage has been known to freeze digital cameras instantly….), and who wants to see pix of a street corner, with no people in it?…. So, y’all will have to wait until tomorrow, when I’ll have some shots from the first night on board….

In past travelogues, I concentrated a lot on pictures of where I was visiting, and neglected to show off the ships I’ve been on, which are part of the attraction for me in traveling. It makes perfect sense to my hedonistic side to travel in luxury if possible; I’ve traveled the cheap way, staying in hostels or cheap motels, eating out of the markets and fast food joints, and taking trains and buses to where I wished to go. Often, before I was married, I’d even resort to hitchhiking for my travel mode…. cheap, and you meet some great ffolkes, but it can be a bit inconsistent if traffic is slow, and can take a LONG time to get anywhere…

That sort of travel is great fun, but requires a lot of energy and physical stamina that I no longer possess, so, having a place to take a nap when I get tired, in a five star hotel, with three gourmet meals a day (or more….), along with staff eager to provide service, is a better choice for someone of my age and condition…. Plus, on those voyages on which my luck holds, the casino can help reduce the overall cost of the trip….. I came out about $500 ahead of the game on my Alaska cruise, with my winnings exceeding my bar bills by about that much…. Of course, I went a bit crazy on souvenirs for everyone, but, hey, I tried….

This trip, I’ll try to remember to take more shots on board, to let y’all see what it’s like to cruise with a crazy old long-haired, long-winded blogger…. or, at least to give you a better idea of what it looks like on board…. Plus, it keeps me from having to think too hard about what to include in the Pearls, which will give me more time to just screw around and do nothing…. which is, after all, the whole point of cruising, to have all the time one wishes to just do nothing….

Doing nothing, in our culture, tends to be looked down upon severely, especially by those who suffer from Christian guilt, and the whole concept of “the near-occasion of sin”, wherein the church assumes that everyone WILL give in to temptation, and everyone WILL act on their worst impulses to (GASP!….) sit around and do nothing, thus becoming undisciplined, immoral, and worst-case for the dogmatists, reduce their guilt, making them less amenable, and more resistive, to behavioral control…. They HATE that!….

So, I encourage hedonism at every turn, as should every other person of a like mind; it’s the best method I’ve found for providing almost immediate relief from the constipated, bloated feeling of constriction that goes along with allowing the dogmatists to draw the patterns of your life. A good, meal, with just a little too much wine and conviviality, is the perfect antidote to the most stringent attitudes…. Why, a prime rib, and a bottle of good Cabernet, has been known to destroy six years of Catholic denial in one sitting, given the proper company, and perhaps some after dinner brandy…. And, even if it doesn’t completely eradicate ALL one’s prior conditioning, the process of removing it, meal by wonderful meal, is one that appeals to even the most hardened ascetic…

Hmm…. I seem to have strayed a bit afield from the concept of an intro…. not unusual, I suppose, and possibly much better than the typical rant I’ve been saddling y’all with of late. I can see that, no matter what I’ve been babbling about, it’s certainly long enough to meet the legal standards for which we shoot, so, I’m opting to go with my usual technique, to just go with it, without worrying at all about what the hell it means, or what it may or may not do in terms of stimulation of cogitation…. That, of course, is, ultimately, the personal responsibility of each gentle reader, at least for the cogitation part…. I’ll try to supply the stimulation, but, no promises, eh?…..

Shall we Pearl?…..

“If any man asks for greatness, let him forget greatness and ask for truth, and he will find both.” — Horace Mann
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“Anger is a tool, not a master. Anger is meant to be tapped into and drawn upon. Used properly, anger is useful. Sloth, apathy, and despair are the enemy. Anger is not. Anger is our friend. Not a nice friend, not a gentle friend, but a very loyal friend.  It will always tell us when we have been betrayed. It will always tell us when we have betrayed ourselves. It will always tell us that it is time to act in our own best interests. Anger is not the action itself. It is action’s invitation.” — Julia Cameron  “The Artist’s Way”

“He who conquers himself is the mightiest warrior.” — Confucius

Lao Tzu sez    I had originally intended to write a piece to accompany these three statements, the latter of which are from two of the most revered philosophers in history…. but, there really isn’t any need to expand on this idea…. It’s pretty perfect, as wisdom goes, so, I’m going to do the unusual, for me, and leave it alone, to allow you the space to consider the concept in your own way, and in your own time….

Just know this…. if there is a single key to being happy in life, this is it…. This is the key to ALL wisdom, ffolkes, so just let it become part of your inner self, and you’ll find your life has fallen into a pattern of serenity, and an inner peace that you have never known….. Oh, didn’t I say what that key is? Hmm, imagine that…. I guess I forgot…. Well, it’s probably best if you articulate it yourself; it seems to work better that way…. Okay, if you insist, one last hint….

“A person never so beautifully shows his own strength, as when he respects another’s weakness.” — Smart Bee

If that doesn’t do it, well, then, we’ll just have to try again another time, won’t we?….   😆
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“I have thought many times since that if poets when they get discouraged would blow their brains out, they could write very much better when they got well.” — Mark Twain

Hmm…. I’m not sure, but, perhaps Mark was feeling a bit curmudgeonly toward poets that day…. If not, well, we all know his fondness for sardonicism, don’t we?…. Here’s one I think you’ll enjoy, from a poet I’ve only recently begun to explore….

Song

A rowan like a lipsticked girl.
Between the by-road and the main road
Alder trees at a wet and dripping distance
Stand off among the rushes.

There are the mud-flowers of dialect
And the immortelles of perfect pitch
And that moment when the bird sings very close
To the music of what happens

~~ Seamus Heaney ~~

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As might be guessed from what has gone before, I’m a bit anxious to be on the road… It will take all of my patience and fortitude to wait until 1 PM, when we leave for the embarkation pier in SF….. especially as leaving dead bodies behind me could conceivably cause problems upon my return…. SIGH…. People get SO upset when I do that!….

Any who, I’ll try to not kill anyone today, so I can have a worry free cruise…. In hopes of getting to that point sometime in the near future, I’m going for an old-school, random, harlequin pearl, to finish off this very skimpy Pearl….. Don’t worry, I’ll make up for it with art work tomorrow…. the camera’s all charged up and ready to shoot…. Until then, here are some thoughts from SB to help y’all get through the day…. or not….

ICONOCLAST, n.  A breaker of idols, the worshipers whereof are imperfectly gratified by the performance, and most strenuously protest that he unbuildeth but doth not reedify, that he pulleth down but pileth not up.  For the poor things would have other idols in place of those he thwacketh upon the mazzard and dispelleth.  But the iconoclast saith:  “Ye shall have none at all, for ye need them not; and if the rebuilder fooleth round hereabout, behold I will depress the head of him and sit thereon till he squawk it.” — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

(Oh! Oh! So, THAT’S what I’ve been doing all this time!! I love it, and now feel very justified in my work here…. I am just loving the idea of putting the OCI after my name, to signify my identity of a member of the Order of Curmudgeonly Iconoclasts…. My sig. line is starting to look impressive, with all my initials after it…. as in, gigoid, MCA, BS,  OCI…. [which, BTW, is the correct way to write ‘gigoid’, with no capitals…. it’s a user-name, and caps aren’t required, nor, in this case, desired….].  If I’m not careful, all these titles will start to go to my head, or something equally inane… Okay, I’m done fooling around now…. We’ll get on with the rest of this pearl….sorry, got distracted…)

“Make your enemies by choice, not by accident. The same applies to friends.” — Xavier R. Quinton

“When the way comes to an end, then change – having changed, you pass through.” — I Ching

“In every country and every age, the priest has been hostile to Liberty.” — Thomas Jefferson

:interesting: adj.  In hacker parlance, this word has strong connotations of `annoying’, or `difficult’, or both.  Hackers relish a challenge, and enjoy wringing all the irony possible out of the ancient Chinese curse “May you live in interesting times”.  Oppose {trivial}, {uninteresting}. — from The on-line Hacker Jargon File V423

(Note: This definition of the word “interesting” is the most frequently applied here at ECR, in terms of meaning and connotation, used almost exclusively; just so’s you know….)

“It seems, in fact, as though the second half of a man’s life is made up of nothing but the habits he has accumulated during the first half.” — Feodor Dostoyevski, “The Possessed”

“The zoo is not an exhibition
I view with much enjoyment,
when I notice beasts in a position
To learn the weaknesses of men.”

— John Brunner
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I’ve done it again, I suppose, and I’ll just have to deal with it…. I’ll be back shortly, I hope….

As I suspected, that took a while, but, it’s done now, and I can get on with my day…. which, as might be imagined, promises to be one of greater than usual import, and all around fun… or, as has been intimated, more interesting…. hopefully without the negative connotation that generally applies…. See y’all tomorrow, even if there are technical issues… I’ll figure out a workaround of some kind….

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

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

Which is Why….


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

gigoid

dozer3

The stupidity factor was obviously miscalculated….

Ffolkes,
For most of my life, my favorite activity, above all things, has been to watch people, and try to understand them. I’ve never really known why it pleases me so to just sit, watching people walk by, pondering the ins and outs of the lives and motivations of the people I see pass before me, but, I know that I can no more stop wondering than I could stop thinking, or breathing…. It’s just too fascinating a pastime to resist, for me….

Though I am well experienced at that pastime, I can’t say that I have reached any particularly earth-shattering conclusions about human nature, though I think I’ve seen enough to not be too shocked by anything it can show me in that arena….. I learned long ago never to underestimate the power of human stupidity….

I also learned to never undervalue the potential for human courage, and to appreciate that piece of human nature, I don’t know it’s name, that makes a human rush into a fire to save a child, or step in front of a bullet to save a comrade, or to stand up for the weak against the wicked and evil. even though it may cost their very life….

That part of all of us, that is brought out in such situations in reality, is worth looking for, and encouraging to manifest in other parts of life, for it is a very powerful and inventive quality, of intuitive right action, based on a morality that is unspoken, but no less immediate, and no less compelling, for all that….

There are times when I make myself laugh….. and this is one of them. The above paragraphs, while all true as the day, are about as pompous as I can get, don’t you think? Oh, it’s interesting enough, I suppose, and all correctly punctuated (if one doesn’t count the three dot journalism habit I’ve developed over the years since Herb Caen made it his iconic style), but it’s just too high-falutin’ to be real….

Nobody talks like that, do they? Nope, unless, of course, they are asking ME to explain some sort of astronomy question, which can get me going, and can easily, by its nature, fall into that sort of pattern…. No, it’s written in what I like to call my Imperial style of writing, which, while true in the realest sense, can drive folks away quickly with its arrogant tone, and pedantic presentation…..  Nobody likes someone who talks like a prig, basically…..

To get back to the subject at hand, though, I’ll mention that watching people continues to be my favorite thing to do to pass the time…. When I was about 14 or so, I remember saving up my money for a couple months, to take to the County Fair, to spend on the carnival.    On the day my family went, I’d rush to the midway, play my games, ride some rides, try to win some prizes, and blow my saved up cash in about two hours of fun. 

I never minded it going so fast, because I would then go out to the main plaza, near the entrance, and watch the crowds, for hours on end, an endlessly fascinating parade of families, young couples, old retired folks, kids, the whole panorama of human culture, all right there, passing before my eyes…..

Now, I’m old, and watching people continues to be my favorite way to pass time, when there is nothing else to do to occupy the mind. The human parade is always changing, never the same, and provides an endless supply of food for thought, humor for the soul, and unlimited entertainment, watching how people interact, and live…. As Spock would obviously say, “Fascinating.”……

Since I’m old, I now have a few perks in life, one of which is what I like to call give-a-shititis, the most common attitude among those of us retirees who think…. We are at a point in life where it can no longer threaten us to behave in certain ways, and it’s difficult to make us do what we don’t wish to do…. What are they going to do to us? Make us old? Give us pain? Restrict our movement? Been there, done that….. For many of us, this means that all the things we’ve always been too polite to say, can now be said with relative impunity, as folks give us a bit of leeway in that respect. Besides, I call it what I do because it is what we DON’T do anymore, and that is give a shit what others think about what we say…..

This, as you might imagine, allows us to say stuff that we formerly would have kept to ourselves, and not care about whether or not that person wants to hear it…. It is a heady experience for a lot of oldsters, and can become habitual…. I don’t agree with those who say that is an occupational hazard that cannot be avoided; one’s demeanor toward others is always a matter of choice, regardless of age, and there is no excuse for being rude without cause; sadly, many older folks don’t get that.

They become grumps, quite simply, and find fault with everything around them, making life difficult for everyone with whom they come in contact…. I don’t ever want to be that kind of old person; I imagine one could end up pretty alone with that kind of attitude…. and I have no intention of being alone forever…. it’s lonely!….

So, I’ll work on my attitude, which isn’t too hard for me, because my own habit of watching others has given me a great love and respect for people, and I try to treat others as I’d want to be treated (the Golden Rule ALWAYS works well…. there is a reason it is a classic idea….). It works for me, as it would work for anyone who makes Love a greater force in their lives than Fear…. Fear is humanity’s greatest enemy, the one that steals our intelligence, our courage, and often, our life, when we let it control our thoughts and actions.

Hmm… I just noticed that I’ve been ranting, or at least, pontificating, for some time now, and we’re still only in the intro section…. Sorry ’bout that, I DO tend to get carried away sometimes, don’t I? Just can’t seem to shut up sometimes…. Oh well, c’est la vie, I suppose, and fairly common for this blog. I’m going to do what I usually do in these cases, and ignore the whole thing….

We’ll just leave things where they are, mid-flight, so to speak, and go on to the remaining portion of the program…. It won’t take TOO long, as I have a task to meet today in the BBR (the Big Blue Room, you know, the room on the other side of the doors of the place where your computer lives….)…. I have to visit my grandson, and spend money….   😆

So, to move things along toward completion of today’s task list, we’ll go on….. Shall we Pearl?…..
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“Good friends, good books and a sleepy conscience: this is the ideal life. (The conviction of the rich that the poor are happier is no more foolish than the conviction of the poor that the rich are.)” — Mark Twain

This has a familiar ring to it, which isn’t surprising, as I’ve used it a number of times in previous Pearls…. It is a good springboard for discussion about society, and human interaction, and quite frankly, would have been a good place to start today’s first pearl….

Unfortunately, during my last break from the chair, I went to take a shower, in preparation for visiting with Zackary, my grandson, slipped on the wet tub, managing to keep from falling by a quick movement and grab at the sink, but, by doing so, gave my back a nasty twist, which is now causing a flood of spasms, massive increasing stiffness, and, a five-step increase in my old friend, Pain…. So…. This paragraph may seem smooth and readable; that comes with a cost, of having to stop to move around, or lie down, every few minutes…. which makes it hard to maintain any continuity of thought, or speech, as manifested by this missive….

This is a pisser, to be honest…. I was supposed to go visit with my grandson today, and now won’t be able to go, as I just can’t face an hour or two on my feet in the park, trying to keep up with a two year old and his father…. It’s one of my high points in life, as I don’t get to see Zack, my grandson, but for a few times a year, and I hate to miss this opportunity…. But, I couldn’t be as involved as I’d like, and I’d just as soon not have any of his memories of me be of an old, frail man who can’t play with him very much, and grunts a lot moving around…. Karma can be a real Bitch sometimes, you know?….

Any who, I don’t want to get into all that today, it’s too depressing, and the pain is enough to deal with…. but, I can’t think very well right now, so I’m going to have to cheat again, and use some of my previous work to fill in…. At least there’s plenty to choose from…. I’ll be right back with a pearl, a blast from the soi-distant past…..

“He who flees will fight again.” — Tertullian (160-240 AD) — De Fuga in Persecutione, c. 10

Okay, I found a perfect pearl, from Halloween of 2012… and it is actually covers the same subject as the one I began today, with the Mark Twain quote, or, sort of… so, since this is already turning into an epic Pearl, for one so broken up by my painful approach to the writing…. enjoy, it’s not bad….

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

And here, poor fool, with all my lore
I stand no wiser than before.
— Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832)

“This instant is thine; the next is in the womb of futurity, and thou knowest not what it may bring forth; maturity of the unborn is in the keeping of the Law. Each future state is that thou has created in the present.” — Akhenaton? (c. B.C. 1375)

“The question is not whether we will die, but how we will live.” — Joan Borysenko

Living life well is a subjective goal, and, as such, whether or not it we are successful in reaching the goal is purely a subjective judgment. This kind of judgment requires introspection, which makes it somewhat of a conundrum for many people, as their skills at that particular activity are severely limited from disuse. Very few people today spend much time in self-examination, from what I can see. If they did, they sure wouldn’t act the way they do, or dress the way they are, or carry on such a foolish, self-destructive course of living….

“The study of the errors into which great minds have fallen in the pursuit of truth can never be uninstructive. . . No man is so wise but that he may learn some wisdom from his past errors, either of thought or action, and no society has made such advances as to be capable of no improvement from the retrospect of its past folly and credulity.” — Charles Mackay

Introspection, however, requires both honesty and ruthlessness, in being able to recognize those things within us that are not of value, and to remove them from our persona. As such, it is what most folks would term as “hard” or “difficult”, and they will avoid it at all cost, laziness being a rather common human trait. It is much simpler, and easier, to just take what all the powers that be, (otherwise known as either the beloved ruling class, or those most heinous of criminal manipulators, preachers/priests), are selling as moral standards, and use them, regardless of whether or not they are truly moral or not…. and I assure you, mostly, they are not….

“Religion is the masterpiece of the art of animal training, for it trains people as to how they shall think.” — Arthur Schopenhauer

I often feel like Goethe, in what he stated above, as I believe myself to be one of the few who actually do use introspection on a regular basis. I believe this because, if other folks were using this process, the world would look a lot different. Women would feel safe walking the streets; old folks would feel cared for; gay, lesbian, and transgender individuals would not suffer discrimination for their orientation; racism would be dead, and religion would join mythology as a piece of mankind’s past, rather than its current status as our jailer/executioner…..

“Being good at being stupid doesn’t count.” — Smart Bee

All of these societal problems (bigotry, racism, discrimination, slavery, entitlement, misogyny, etc. )arise from the attitude of elitism held by those individuals among us who never look within, to see just how ugly their inner selves have become, from using the sick, twisted elitism as preached by the modern religious and political leaders.

We, as a species, cannot afford to listen any more to the Judeo-Christian (note: add Talmudic, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, Shinto, etc…. gigoid, 3/24/13) ethic as propounded by the beloved ruling class; this kind of entitlement and aggrandizement has led us to the very brink of extinction, as we continue to treat the planet as our toy, instead of as our home.

We cannot keep pouring millions of tons of carbon monoxide into the atmosphere and expect nothing to happen, because what WILL happen is already happening…. our weather is changing, and not in a good way…. the planet is warming up, and when it is warm enough, the ice at the poles will melt, and everything on Earth will feel the effects….

“The faith in which I was brought up assured me that I was better than other people: I was saved, they were damned … Our hymns were loaded with arrogance–self-congratulation on how cozy we were with the Almighty and what a high opinion he had of us, what hell everybody else would catch come judgment day.” — Robert A. Heinlein

As Akhenaton pointed out over 3000 years ago, what we do in the present will determine how the future will be. What our species is doing now will guarantee that most of us won’t be around to see what happens in that future, because we will be dead within a hundred years, or less, if things don’t begin to change TODAY…. Since it is unlikely that will happen, well, we may as well take the advice given to many school children in the 50’s, in learning to deal with an atomic blast…. to wit: bend over and kiss your ass goodbye….  I hate to be so cynical, but, introspection requires honesty, so….

“You were s’posed to laugh!” — Zippy the Pinhead
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It’s probably a bit egocentric, but, hey, it is MY blog, right?…. Here is a poem I wrote last August, once again on the subject so close to my mind today…. my old friend and constant companion…. Pain….

Denial of Comfort

Baleful chairs become the enemy, heralded in red
seemingly welcome softness beckons with a smile,
waiting, content with slaughter, they are finally led
screaming in agony, deluged in venom all the while.

Desperate distraction becomes such a friendless fire
for all the patterns of autumn’s pale dismay,
leaving sincerely latent trails in spirals of twisted wire,
while memory insists, again, upon failure, palpably evil, and fey.

Fat, jaded tears would have fallen in good time,
if only the suitable suitor had scaled the garden’s wall.
Credence for discounted prices luckily in their prime
bring only fascinated eyes into such a hallowed hall.

Searching for answers is ever a clever portrayal
with studious accouterments to fulfill each common rule.
Arguably patient pictures of science and honest betrayal
shall evermore languish, in light of passion so elegantly cruel.

~~ gigoid

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Okay, so you already know I’m cheating today…. therefore, another pearl from the past isn’t going to fool anybody, unless I try to pass it off as fresh, and I refuse to go there…. Hence, here is another pearl, which may give any newbies more information than they need…. it might scare them off. But, I’m nothing, if not honest…. so, I give you this again too-long, but, too bad, so sad piece from November of 2012….

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

:GIGO: /gi:’goh/ [acronym] 1. `Garbage In, Garbage Out’ — usually said in response to {luser}s who complain that a program didn’t “do the right thing” when given imperfect input or otherwise mistreated in some way.  Also commonly used to describe failures in human decision making due to faulty, incomplete, or imprecise data.  2. `Garbage In, Gospel Out’: this more recent expansion is a sardonic comment on the tendency human beings have to put excessive trust in `computerized’ data. — from The on-line Hacker Jargon File V423

Many years ago, I adopted the user name gigoid, taking it from the above definition, and adding an “id” for, of course, identification purposes; with that suffix, I am assured of human status, i.e. hominid, humanoid, etc.  I chose this acronym because it is the perfect reminder of the basic integrity that is built into all computers, i.e., they can only do what we tell them to do, and cannot lie. Thus, if our results are wrong, the error lies in our input, not in the computer; this automatically cuts in half the number of places to look for the problem.

I like to think that my awareness of this principle characteristic is what has allowed me to use computers without suffering many of the common difficulties such as crashes, freezes, and blue screens of death. Only once have I ever encountered one of those on my own computer, and that was the result of a virus my defenses missed… my fault, of course, I hadn’t updated soon enough…

Oh, I’ve encountered that famous blue screen before, when I worked as a computer tech back in the late 90’s, setting up LAN’s and office systems for H&R Block…. a significant percentage of machines were dead soon after coming out of the factory box. But, on my own computers, I am very careful never to break any of the basic rules that govern those kinds of mishaps…. and I owe it all to a wise choice of user name…. Well, it’s fun to think about it that way anyway….

So, who is gigoid? Well, if you’ve hung about this blog site for long, I’ve certainly given y’all enough of my inner workings to look at, in my rants, and in my old school pearls, as well as in my poetry, which is quite revealing, to me….. but, then, if it wasn’t, I most likely couldn’t write it….

Any who, to give the short answer to that question, I’ll post below some pearls that give insight into what I believe to be true, and how I try to live…. Like any weak human, I don’t always succeed at being as moral or ethical as I can be, but, I do try, and I do feel pangs of regret when I don’t, so cut me some slack, eh? Just kidding…. What I am is all what I am, though I’m not Popeye…. and these pearls are what I see in the mirror…..

“They are able because they think they are able.” — Virgil

“Excellence is an art won by training and habituation.  We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly.  We are what we repeatedly do.  Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.” — Aristotle

“An epigram often flashes light into regions where reason shines but dimly.” — E. P. Whipple

It is my firm belief that it is a mistake to hold firm beliefs. — Smart Bee

Computers can never replace human stupidity. — Smart Bee

“Do not confuse “duty” with what other people expect of you; they are utterly different. Duty is a debt you owe to yourself to fulfill obligations you have assumed voluntarily. Paying that debt can entail anything from years of patient work to instant willingness to die. Difficult it may be, but the reward is self-respect.


But there is no reward at all for doing what other people expect of you, and to do so is not merely difficult, but impossible. It is easier to deal with a footpad than it is with the leech who wants “just a few minutes of your time, please — this won’t take long.” Time is your total capital, and the minutes of your life are painfully few. If you allow yourself to fall into the vice of agreeing to such requests, they quickly snowball to the point where these parasites will use up 100 percent of your time — and squawk for more!


So learn to say No – and to be rude about it when necessary. Otherwise you will not have time to carry out your duty, or to do your own work, and certainly no time for love and happiness. The termites will nibble away your life and leave none of it for you. (This rule does not mean that you must not do a favor for a friend, or even a stranger. But let the choice be yours. Don’t do it because it is “expected” of you.) “

— Lazarus Long, from Time Enough for Love, by Robert Heinlein

“Do I look like someone who cares about what God thinks?” — Zippy the Pinhead

Well, that’s enough about me…. Hope this helps clear up any confusion, and if not, well, hey, life goes on…. all we can do is all we can do, and no more….
__________________________________

I’ve tried to read this over, proofing-wise, and can only say, well, I’ve done all I can do…. I think it’s close to what it should be, and, if you will remember axiom #1 of Peruaosophy, you’ll realize that’s enough for me…. (For the uninitiated, Peruaosophy is the Philosophy of Pearls, as created by gigoid (yep, that’s me….) in 1986…. #1 says, to wit: “I think I am…. that’s close enough.” ) I’ve relied heavily on my past work today, but, given my justification, feel no remorse whatsoever… and neither should you….  😆      Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


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

gigoid

dozer3

Orders to cease and resist….

Ffolkes,
Damn, damn, damn….. say it rapidly enough, and almost any frustration is, if not eased, at least properly expressed….. In this case it is my reaction to being up again at 0630. I have no idea why I’m up this early again, unless it is a physical reaction, somehow, to all the heat we’re having around here. It is the middle of October, almost a full month into autumn, and the temperature today is predicted to be near 90 degrees F. There is no fog outside to cool things off, so it is not a typical summer pattern; it is more like a stalled high pressure system sitting over the state that traps the heat, burdening us with weather that brings to mind tropical islands, swaying grass skirts, and drinks with umbrellas…..

Whatever the cause, I am up, and too awake to persuade myself to go back to sleep…. so, I’m here courting inspiration, hoping the poem I’ve felt percolating for some time will come to light…. Oops, don’t want to spook it away by talking about it…. any who, what to do, what to do….. hmmm, how’s this?…. I found this last night, thought it might come in handy, and sure enough….. Here is a bit of deeper information on an old nemesis….

I often lament in this space the ubiquitous presence of Murphy…. In order to get full appreciation of just how much he messes with me, of course, one would have to walk in my shoes…. but then how would I get anywhere? No, I’ll keep my shoes, thanks…. However, let me just say, I hate his guts, sincerely, and hope such negativity so early doesn’t darken your day….. Nonetheless, I like to help people understand his far-reaching asininity, so here is some information on the origins of Murphy’s Law, as cobbled together by the editors of Smart Bee, and the on-line Hacker Jargon File….

:Finagle’s Law: n.  The generalized or `folk’ version of {Murphy’s Law}, fully named “Finagle’s Law of Dynamic Negatives” and usually rendered “Anything that can go wrong, will”.  May have been first published by Francis P. Chisholm in his 1963 essay “The Chisholm Effect”, later reprinted in the classic anthology “A Stress Analysis Of A Strapless Evening Gown: And Other Essays For A Scientific Eye” (Robert Baker ed, Prentice-Hall, ISBN 0-13-852608-7).

The label `Finagle’s Law’ was popularized by SF author Larry Niven in several stories depicting a frontier culture of asteroid miners; this `Belter’ culture professed a religion and/or running joke involving the worship of the dread god Finagle and his mad prophet Murphy.  Some technical and scientific cultures (e.g., paleontologists) know it under the name `Sod’s Law’; this usage may be more common in Great Britain.

One variant favored among hackers is “The perversity of the Universe tends towards a maximum” (but see also {Hanlon’s Razor}). — from The on-line Hacker Jargon File V423

Well, there you have it…. all the latest on our old pal Murphy, and the great god Finagle…. HAH! The asshole…. may his lips become close through the efforts of super-glue…. Given the early hour, perhaps you will excuse my lack of taste and impulse control…. I’m thinking at this point it is most likely the best idea if we just give up on achieving any real coherency, and go on to diving…. Shall we Pearl?…..
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“I share the belief of many of my contemporaries that the spiritual crisis pervading all spheres of Western industrial society can be remedied only by a change in our world view. We shall have to shift from the materialistic, dualistic belief that people and their environment are separate, toward a new consciousness of an all-encompassing reality, which embraces the experiencing ego, a reality in which people feel their oneness with animate nature and all of creation.” — Dr. Albert Hoffman

Dr. Hoffman (I suspect a Ph.D. here, or, at best, a Doctor of Divinity….) (and certainly not THE Doctor….. you know, the one with the Tardis ….)  has made a very astute observation, and a clear statement. However, it is constructed, and presented, in such a way that 99% of the people who need to know this will fall asleep by the end of the first sentence…. and anyone who makes it to the part that says “new consciousness of an all-encompassing reality” will certainly lose any remaining interest in a flash….

The people who most need to understand this are people the good doctor does not comprehend, for to them, “oneness” comes only with the involvement of beer cans…..or Vaseline…. In order to throw off a materialistic, dualistic belief system, one needs to have the basic ability to understand what that is, and the average human, busy with life, has no time or inclination to think about their belief system in those terms, or at all, for that matter….. Much less have they any investment in whether or not it is dualistic; they deal with it just is the way it is, without any thoughts as to its structure….

“It is your resistance to ‘what is’ that causes your suffering.” — Buddha

The point related here by Buddha is also very astute, and in a way, offers support to the statement above. One of the problems with the idea of humanity changing its basic world view is that we, as a species, have learned to cope with things, as they are, in ways that may not be moral, or ethical, but are very effective in terms of allowing those who use these methods to have their way, thus reinforcing their desire to continue doing things their way. This means that, no matter how logical, or true, a new, different way of doing things may be, no matter how morally or ethically superior, people aren’t going to want to use them, unless it appeals to their own self interest, and rewards them somehow for giving up their old ways…. Difficult to do when it takes away all their power over others….. a very addictive bonus in the old method of coping….

Thus, we see that these people, who learn to love power, deal with their suffering by attempting to change “what is” to suit their own preferences. That others allow them to do so is, to me, one of Life’s great mysteries; I suppose it can be attributed to human stupidity, but I hate to be so simplistic, and would rather think it is either cowardice or cupidity. Neither is more attractive, as a reason, or as an excuse, but at least they place the blame where it belongs.  In the larger picture, humankind does not present a very pretty aspect, because our history is rife with examples of how people who know better give in to people who just don’t care.

Hell, our entire system of government, if you look at it dispassionately, can be described as one where the greatest number allows the least number to dominate, merely on the basis of how well they can tell lies…. and it is also set up to reward those who lie, cheat, and steal from their society mates, with the full approval of those mates. Doesn’t make a lot of sense when one looks at it from that direction, does it?

I’m afraid I stumbled into a deep discussion, before my mind was fully prepared to deal with it…. this subject deserves a much more detailed examination, with some expanded reasoning and discussion. But, this morning isn’t the time to do that, as I am already in a small corner, and can’t seem to find a good route back out into the middle. So, we will leave this here, with a pearl that, if nothing else, will provide you with a path out of this morass back into the realms of reason…. as well as giving a hint of how some of us deal with the intransigence of the majority of society….

“I am free, no matter what rules surround me.   If I find them tolerable,  I tolerate them; if I find them too obnoxious, I break them.  I am free because I know that I alone am morally responsible for everything I do.” — Professor Bernardo de la Paz

In the infamous words of the Governator, “I’ll be back….”
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Ah, there it is….. I knew it was in there somewhere…..

Raging at Aging

As old as you feel, we are told, is old as you are,
custom assures such vision will carry us far.
Reality begs to differ, may it be so bold
it is really quite painful, and very, very cold.

The power and strength felt in our halcyon youth
desert us with age, yet another unwelcome truth.
Irony rules our time here on this bountiful earth
as we reflect the changes over time since our birth.

As physical powers fade from this fragile shell,
we learn our mind can serve us quite as well.
The strength that once filled our bones and hearts
is now applied by our will, to more arcane arts.

Life’s greatest gift is our freedom of choice
no matter how often we forget, we still get a voice.
Energy, or apathy, by our will we may choose,
failing to do so, our only way to lose.

Each of us lives in the grip of time and space,
always seeking our balance, our own chosen place.
One must accept reality, for it is true at the core,
all we can do, is all we can do, and nothing more.

~~ gigoid
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I’m feeling a bit lazy this morning, (big surprise!….), so here is an old school pearl, loosely pointing at the value of individuality and self-expression…. with the usual bent toward taking responsibility for self…. In the interests of keeping that purpose foremost, remember this….

Hard work has a future. Laziness pays off now. — Bumper Sticker

See? All in the wrist….. enjoy!

I is the first letter of the alphabet, the first word of the language, the first thought of the mind, the first object of affection.  In grammar it is a pronoun of the first person and singular number.  Its plural is said to be _We_, but how there can be more than one myself is doubtless clearer the grammarians than it is to the author of this incomparable dictionary.  Conception of two myselfs is difficult, but fine.  The frank yet graceful use of “I” distinguishes a good writer from a bad; the latter carries it with the manner of a thief trying to cloak his loot. — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

“Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative.” — Oscar Wilde

“A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines.  With consistency a great soul has simply nothing to do. — Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882) Essays: First Series (1841) “Self-Reliance”

“I am ready to meet my Maker. Whether my Maker is prepared for the great ordeal of meeting me is another matter.” — Sir Winston Churchill

“I know a lot of people without brains who do an awful lot of talking.” — The Scarecrow, Wizard of Oz
(Oops! Busted!…..)

“Any fool can know. The point is to understand.” — Albert Einstein

Finally, in order to bring just the right touch of class and elegance to this process, I give you this most excellent finishing thought, to return you to the proper state of mindfulness necessary to getting on with the day…..

“My pants just went on a wild rampage through a Long Island Bowling Alley!!” — Zippy the Pinhead
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Okay, well, they can’t all be masterpieces…. that would be a bit much to expect, don’t you think? Of course, we are in no danger here of ever being accused of that anyway…. but, we keep trying…. I’m not sure about y’all, but I’m done trying to think coherently for the day. I’m going to save the dark energy simmering in my mind, as my unconsciousness mind chews on the things in my life that are stressful, to let out on some telemarketer, or a bureaucratic bozo who manages to get through my phone screening system…. they generally deserve it, or are at least accustomed to hearing it…. or maybe I’ll go read a newspaper’s front page, to get an idea on how close we are getting to the Apocalypse….. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


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

gigoid

Dozer

Kowabunga!

Drizzled with mere seconds to spare….

Ffolkes,
Far be it from me to ever put a roadblock up in front of my creative process; with the emotional pressure I put on myself to write, I’d be a basket case in hours if I did something so foolish. In me, the process is not a well-defined, step-by-step process, though I do have my rituals. Instead of being a walk with a dog on a leash, that politely stays on the path, and doesn’t chase cars, it is more of a romp with a dog in a dog park, off the leash, with both of us free to run and play. For me, it has always been more productive that way. So, it makes no sense at all for me to obstruct the process in myself, as it is a key element in my continued sanity…..

Once again, here I am, sitting here wondering who wrote that shit…. oh, it was me, and it’s all true, more or less. But, it isn’t anything like what I envisioned writing when I sat down to begin. As a matter of fact, the first five words were meant to push me off into one of my fantasy story openings, complete with witches, goats, three chandeliers, a devil, an angel, and a Peking Duck without sauce. Instead, I find myself at the end of a tidy little discussion that would most likely bore an accountant in tax season to desperate tears. (Aha, that reminds me…. do taxes!)  I can’t imagine what came over me; I seem to have misplaced my sense of whimsy, and can already see the ill effects of its absence…..

Ah well, the workaround for this particular problem is pretty straightforward…. ignore it and move on. That part of me that writes the boring stuff is easily miffed by such inattention, and will promptly stomp off in high dudgeon to find a quiet corner in which to sulk. So, we will now embark on our morning search for Pearls…. shall we begin?…. Aha, a fine specimen, practically jumped into the bag… we’ll give it primary billing, with no needed discussion….

“I notice that you use plain, simple language, short words and brief sentences. That is the way to write English — it is the modern way and the best way. Stick to it; don’t let fluff and flowers and verbosity creep in. When you catch an adjective, kill it. No, I don’t mean utterly, but kill most of them — then the rest will be valuable. They weaken when they are close together. They give strength when they are wide apart. An adjective habit, or a wordy, diffuse, flowery habit, once fastened upon a person, is as hard to get rid of as any other vice.” — Mark Twain

Good advice… let’s see how close we can come to following it….. Kowabunga!
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:Shub-Internet: /shuhb’ in’t*r-net/ n.  [MUD: from H. P. Lovecraft’s evil fictional deity Shub-Niggurath, the Black Goat with a Thousand Young] The harsh personification of the Internet: Beast of a Thousand Processes, Eater of Characters, Avatar of Line Noise, and Imp of Call Waiting; the hideous multi-tendriled entity formed of all the manifold connections of the net.  A sect of MUDders worships Shub-Internet, sacrificing objects and praying for good connections. To no avail — its purpose is malign and evil, and is the cause of all network slowdown.  Often heard as in “Freela casts a tac nuke at Shub-Internet for slowing her down.”  (A forged response often follows along the lines of: “Shub-Internet gulps down the tac nuke and burps happily.”)  Also cursed by users of the Web, {FTP} and {TELNET} when the system slows down. The dread name of Shub-Internet is seldom spoken aloud, as it is said that repeating it three times will cause the being
to wake, deep within its lair beneath the Pentagon.  Compare {Random Number God}. — from The on-line Hacker Jargon File V423

Every culture, and every sub-culture within that body, of which hacker culture is not an exception, spawns its own myths. These myths and legends are consistent with the principles of morality and beliefs that infuse the various elements in the group, composed of that culture’s deepest fears of the true unknown nature of the technology they employ. In hacker culture, their gods and demons take the shape and character of the antithesis of the wizards and demi-gods they admire, for their mastery of the nuances of the field of knowledge in which they all play and live; these unfortunate deities generally resemble the CEO of the company where they toil for pay.

I find hacker culture and mythology fascinating, as it is often based on concepts and ideas from science- and speculative-fiction, and fantasy, all blended together into such creatively conceived entities as Shub-Internet…. a creature both terrifying and playful….. Kind of like Lord Voldemort on laughing gas, but uglier, if you can picture that…. The highest form of humor to a hacker would be for Curly Joe to catch the Wolfman or Dracula with the old exploding cigar gag, in a movie where Curly is a programmer and Dracula is a management suit….. all after an elegant hack that saved the world, and the company, from evil bureaucrats from the Fast Food Dimension…..
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“Even for a wizard there will often come times when someone close to you, perhaps even your spouse, criticizes your habits by comparing them to those of animals. This is distinctly unfair to the animals, who have far better habits than we in many areas. When, for example, have you seen a frog collecting taxes or a squirrel running for electoral office? Present arguments like these to those people who criticize you. If they still do not see the wisdom of your ways, you may then feel free to bite them.” — The Teachings of Ebenezum, Vol. IX

Now, this is a philosophical attitude I can really get behind. I cannot begin to count how many conversations just like this I have had over the course of my life, with those who don’t like, or more often, and more accurately, don’t understand me or what I say and do.  While I’ve been either fortunate enough, or nice enough to not have run across a great many folks who are actively upset by my admittedly unusual mannerisms and expressions, there have been many who, because of their own dissatisfaction with their own lives, find it hard to keep their noses out of mine, or anyone else’s for that matter….. A lot of them wear badges, or work in government bureaucracies, and are just smart enough to realize how badly they have screwed up their own lives, so they try to make themselves feel better by criticizing whatever other folks are up to….. it’s pathetic, really…. and well worth the hullabaloo that ensues after administering the evidence of our displeasure….
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But Knowledge to their eyes her ample page,
Rich with the spoils of time, did ne’er unroll;
Chill penury repress’d their noble rage,
And froze the genial current of the soul.
— Thomas Gray (1716-1771) — Elegy in a Country Churchyard, Stanza 13

It isn’t often that ignorance is made so plain, nor the exact feel of it so well portrayed as in this little gem……

To each his suff’rings; all are men,
Condemn’d alike to groan,–
The tender for another’s pain,
Th’ unfeeling for his own.
Yet ah! why should they know their fate,
Since sorrow never comes too late,
And happiness too swiftly flies?
Thought would destroy their paradise.
No more; where ignorance is bliss,
‘T is folly to be wise.
— Thomas Gray (1716-1771) — On a Distant Prospect of Eton College, Stanza 10

Life is so simple when you don’t know what you’re talking about. — Smart Bee  (Isn’t that what Bush Jr., the Shrub, had printed around the edges of the national seal while he was in office? I think it was….or should have been…. I know it was printed on his cards….)
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What can I say? I’m a sucker for puppies…. found this on Facebook a few days ago, and just love it!….

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No man is an island, but then no man is a potato salad, either. — Smart Bee

I haven’t lost my mind, I know exactly where I left it. — Smart Bee

Since it is obvious by now that trying to be serious today just isn’t going to happen without a struggle, I am bowing to the forces at work, and giving up on any discussion of any compelling issues.  We’ll just fill in with some pertinent observations, such as exemplified by those little gems above this blurb…..

“Reality is a crutch for people who can’t cope with drugs.” — Lily Tomlin

I wasn’t picking my nose…I was scratching.

iT’s HArD tO tYPe WHilE HolDiNG a cAT…

Puns are bad, but poetry is verse.

“You can’t help respecting anybody who can spell TUESDAY, even if he doesn’t spell it right; but spelling isn’t everything. There are days when spelling Tuesday simply doesn’t count.” — A.A. Milne

A billion seconds ago Harry Truman was president.
A billion minutes ago was just after the time of Christ.
A billion hours ago man had not yet walked on earth.
A billion dollars ago was late yesterday at the U.S. Treasury…
— According to a recent government publication … (I know, not funny… sad and pathetically true…. but interesting….)

“How often we recall, with regret, that Napoleon once shot at a magazine editor and missed him and killed a publisher. But we remember with charity, that his intentions were good.” — Mark Twain

Okay, okay, settle down! I can hear you whimpering in pain, no need to shout…. I’m done now, so you can take a moment to go lick your wounds in private….. see you below in a few minutes…..
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A long, strange trip indeed….. I’m kind of glad it’s over, and we can get on with the rest of the day. The chances of it being better than it has thus far been willing to allow will no doubt increase the further from Now we get…. well, I AM and optimist at heart…. perhaps it would be best to just stick to the usual approach, expecting nothing, and enjoying the actual results, whatever they may be….. what with the rather capricious events that have thus far been our lot, that is probably for the best….. Y’all take care out there….


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

gigoid

Kowabunga!


Open for dissection: bring your own scalpel….

Ffolkes,
With a hearty grin and a friendly wave, we greet the morning once more. The grin may look a bit forced, and the wave somewhat rehearsed; chalk that up to the lateness of the hour when I finally dropped off. Just couldn’t persuade the sandman to get here any earlier, and when he finally came, he had to go back for his sack of sleep dust, which he had inadvertently left at his previous stop, somewhere in the Grand Tetons,  up in Wyoming. By the time he got back, I was already yawning, so all went smoothly from that point. If one doesn’t count the age-related trips to the BR during the night (why is it always colder when we have to get up? Is it a law or something?…..oh, right. Murphy. Never mind…).

It’s probably the worst part of the whole deal to have one’s own body providing itself with its own problems; between losing hair at an alarming rate and the nightly trips to the BR, it’s a wonder I haven’t snapped and hurt someone. Of course, no one is ever here, so I’d have to go find someone to flail upon, which just serves to add more angst. Ah well, the alternative is worse, I suppose….I wouldn’t go back to my teens unless forced at gunpoint……. let’s drop the whole subject, shall we?….. it helps to think of this, from a man with experience….

“You can’t help getting older, but you don’t have to get old.” — George Burns

Which is a damn sight better than, “Suddenly, Professor Liebowitz realizes he has come to the seminar without his duck …” Okay, I’m through fooling around now; we’ll get on with the regular program……sorry, I needed the warm-up…..
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“It is better to have a permanent income than to be fascinating.” — Oscar Wilde (1854-1900)

I’d have to agree here. I’d also like to add it would be pleasant to possess both qualities…. I’ve always felt Oscar was being more than a little facetious with this, but even if not, and it was entirely cynical, that would not alter its attraction, because, after all, it IS a value judgment….. in fact, several value judgments in one package. What I mean by that has been classified secret, so unfortunately, that’s the end of this little segment….. if I said any more, I have to find and cream pie all of you…..
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:religious issues: n.  Questions which seemingly cannot be raised without touching off {holy wars}, such as “What is the best operating system (or editor, language, architecture, shell, mail reader, news reader)?”, “What about that Heinlein guy, eh?”, “What should we add to the new Jargon File?”  See {holy wars}; see also {theology}, {bigot}. — This term is a prime example of {ha ha only serious}.  People actually develop the most amazing and religiously intense attachments to their tools, even when the tools are intangible.  The most constructive thing one can do when one stumbles into the crossfire is mumble {Get a life!} and leave — unless, of course, one’s _own_ unassailably rational and obviously correct choices are being slammed. — from The on-line Hacker Jargon File V423

I have, in previous posts, expressed admiration of hacker culture, and I don’t think it is misplaced. This term, used as humor, parallels exactly the same phenomenon in society at large, for the same kinds of questions, i.e., “What do you mean, the banks need more money?” or “My, that’s a lot of oil you have there…..wanna share?” I especially like the given default response when confronted, “get a life”; it shows a lot of class and restraint to leave it at that. SIGH….I’d love to be able to leave it at that….. so I will….. you lucked out, in one respect. I don’t quite have the built-up outrage for a full rant just now; we’ll have to get back to this another day…… you can put the Taser down, now, you won’t need it……
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” Stereotypes are like a supermarket. They are convenient, economical, and useful. They do our thinking for us. We don’t have to waste time trying to make sense of our ignorance. Stereotypes slice through the niceties of language, tide us over the loose ends we don’t understand and wrap up into a comfortable package our narrow – mindedness about everything and everybody except ourselves.” — Chuck Stone (Washington Post 6/3/96)

I’m sorry I missed this article, whatever it was about, when it was first printed; this excerpt shows a lot of insight, and the article itself would no doubt have some good things to say. This is a really accurate description of Robert Heinlein’s Mrs. Grundy; she’s the old busybody who lives in every neighborhood, who spends all her copious free time peeking out the windows and noting down all the gossip she can find about her neighbors, and pronouncing criticisms and moralistic judgments on everyone but herself. This sort of attitude, petty, mean, lazy, and ignorant, is all-too-familiar, and may ultimately lead to our downfall as a species.

Though given adequate tools, much of mankind refuses, in far too many cases, to use, even minimally, the gift of imagination, save to imagine their fears, magnifying them all out of proportion because they have not the courage to face them. Whether it is about religion, or freedom, or truth, or whatever, the ignoramus’s among us react with anxiety and rage to any ideas that are unfamiliar, or in any way differ from their own set of preconceived stereotypes and standards. Thus, Jews, Buddhists, Muslims, even Lutherans & Papists, or anyone with a differently hued skin, become objects of fear and loathing, and the age-old arguments continue. I often like to use the following in trying to reason with such people, but fanaticism is usually immune to such frippery as truth or rationality……

“The legitimate powers of government extend to such acts only as are injurious to others. But it does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are twenty gods or no god. It neither picks my pocket, nor breaks my leg.” — Thomas Jefferson

I also like this take on the subject; it gives permission to fire away at these Bozos, whenever and wherever we encounter them…..

“In all life one should comfort the afflicted, but verily, also, one should afflict the comfortable, and especially when they are comfortably, contentedly, even happily wrong.” — John Kenneth Galbraith, Guardian (London, 28 July 1989)

…And in a final spasm of pearlistic splendor, we have this from Mrs. Grundy’s antithesis, a woman of grace and intelligence….. ’nuff said….

“I am patient with stupidity but not with those who are proud of it.” — Edith Sitwell
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And the night shall be filled with music,
And the cares that infest the day
Shall fold their tents like the Arabs,
And as silently steal away.
— Henry W. Longfellow (1807-1882) — The Day is done

SIGH……that’s better. I’ve just spent the last 40 minutes desperately searching for something profound to write about, and had little success in the quest at hand, until I came across this little gem. I’m sure it’s quite familiar; I seem to remember several long, boring sessions in high school English class discussing this, and a number of other classic poems. It may possibly have been made to be a fun class, but our English teacher was, at that time, suffering a bit of career burp, apparently feeling somewhat despondent over his career choice; regretful of being stuck in a small town, and small school, where someone of his delicate sensibilities and artistic bent was not quite as appreciated as he might have been in a larger town, where there would conceivably be people with tastes that didn’t include anything to do with tractors, the weather, or sheep.

He once commented to the class at large, after grading a test on grammar in the 10th grade, in which all but two of the class failed miserably, that he could teach this subject to a roomful of developmentally disabled chimpanzees faster than our group was picking it up. He may have been right; a good 30% of my classmates still wear cowboy boots, string ties, and shirts with pearl buttons to dress up; I understand, though, that even those who still drive pickup trucks, and who still depend on the land for their living, have email addresses, so there has been some progress made there. In the group photo from our last reunion last year, I didn’t see even one belt buckle bigger than the wearer’s fist.  Heck, I hear there is now a hospital, and TWO bars in town; there’s just no stopping progress, I suppose….. I’ll just fold my tent, and steal silently away…..
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And through the spaces of the dark
Midnight shakes the memory
As a madman shakes a dead geranium
— T.S. Eliot

No adornment needed……
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Well, THAT turned on me! Getting all this down in comprehensible form became a matter of ripping it out of my head, and literally flogging myself to type it onto the screen, a bloody process at best. I shall require copious sustenance in the form of high-caloric comestibles, to replace all the energy that got burned up. Not complaining; sometimes that’s what it takes….. but it always comes as a surprise, and I should know better than to be so heavily affected. One word….. Murphy….. Q.E.D………y’all take care out there……


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

gigoid

Dozer

Kowabunga!