Bluffing on a busted flush….

Ffolkes,

“He is able who thinks he is able.”

~~ Buddha ~~

Two

Road Trip

Image stolen from unknown Internet site.


Unburdened by the rigors of coherent thought, I sit to begin another Pearl. I sincerely wish, too, I could claim credit for the opening sentence; sadly, I stole part of it. Beautiful, though, isn’t it? The part before the comma is the part I stole, which is why I wish I’d said it; it is, in almost every sense, a perfect expression of my state of being almost every day as I start this process. Process it is, too, beginning with will power sufficient to arise from bed, (always a challenging exercise, these days….), stumble to the coffee machine to turn it on, then, walk to the computer to attempt to find the tiny button to turn it on….

About ten minutes later, having somehow waited to get the coffee into my system, (often performing completely unconscious physical actions to do so…. I seldom remember FIXING the coffee, only consuming it…), I look at the screen to see if, maybe, I wrote something worth keeping while in my semi-conscious state. At least THAT is consistent…. it’s never there…

Today, the process is complicated even further by the vertigo I’ve been gifted with of late. In case you’ve never experienced it, let me assure you, it’s no picnic. Any sort of motion seems to stimulate it, which makes the process of writing somewhat problematic, as the head makes natural movements while thinking about them…. To be honest, it’s getting to be a bit of a bother…. and, yes, that’s sarcasm….

But. I got some of this done yesterday, so, I’ll push through, pretending I’m tough. I really did used to be tough; I just need to remember how to go about it…. Shouldn’t be too hard; I’ve played with pain, or other issues, all my life…. I’m not going to let it keep me from doing what I need to do now…..

Fuck Murphy….. and the fucking white horse he thinks he rode in on….

Shall we Pearl?

“I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little death that brings total oblivion. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me and turn my inner eye to follow its path. When the fear is gone, there will be nothing. Only I will remain.” — The Litany Against Fear (Frank Herbert, -Dune-, 1965)

Good timing on that one…. it’ll come in handy today….

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three tenors

Image from scotsman.com via Google images


I am NOT an opera fan, at all. However…. I AM a big fan of the human voice; I learned to play guitar so I could sing along. This isn’t to say I’ve the world’s best baritone; in fact I’d say any one of these three gentlemen are much better, without any fear of disagreement, from anyone but my dog, which I don’t have. And, they’re tenors, not baritones, which goes to show you how good I might be…. When all three of them are hitting a top note, it is, literally, spine-tingling…. Enjoy, ffolkes….


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The Three Tenors In Paris ~~ 1998

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le penseur-rodin

    As might be surmised, a fresh rant is out of the question, unless I want to start in on Kaiser, HMO’s, and Big Pharm; I think I’ve built up enough angst over them to rant for a week with stopping…. For now, this little exercise will do….

From 9/2/2013:

“The great French Marshall Lyautey once asked his gardener to plant a tree. The gardener objected that the tree was slow growing and would not reach maturity for 100 years. The Marshall replied, In that case, there is no time to lose; plant it this very afternoon.” — John F. Kennedy

What a great little anecdote! I love to see a great life lesson told in a few short words…. Here is a perfect description of the attitude one requires to achieve happiness…. Yes, happiness, an old word, one bandied about much by the uninformed, and the unhappy…. Happy people never need to use the word itself, as they are just…. there. There is little need to think about being happy, when you are, and in fact, not thinking about it is one of the keys to holding it, once found…. But, it is a rare person in today’s world who can maintain any long periods where they feel happy the entire time; the world intrudes too much into our lives to give us leave to be happy, unless we know the secret…..

Yes, there’s a secret….. Of course, it’s the kind of secret that is hidden right in plain sight, like Poe’s Purloined Letter. It only requires that one be willing to accept it, and to allow it to enter into one’s spirit, suffusing the world in the less harsh light of contentment, rather than the cold, hard light of resentment. People tend to be like the gardener, blocking their own happiness by finding all kinds of reasons to NOT allow it entry into their world. As humans, we are taught at young age to view reality with stoicism, and mute, unquestioning acceptance of our lot; we are shown all the ways to look ahead, to see the worst of what can happen, in order to be prepared….

But, there is another way to approach the matter, one little known, and therefore little taught…Reality is a tough go, for sure, but, with a little bit of mental effort, much easier than the alternative, one can be in control of how it (Reality) affects one’s life. In short, Life treats us all like shit; what determines how much of it gets in our sandwich depends solely on us, and how we react to that shit…. We can slap the shit between two slices of bread, and choke it down…. or, we can use it as fertilizer, to grow some rather nice weed…. potent, and good for you….

Whatever one decides, the choice remains, as long as one is aware of the options. The problem with most folks is, they don’t see the options, or they don’t believe they will work, as their attitudes keep them from even trying a lot of new ways to do things. I won’t say it is this way for all people, but the greatest majority of people I see in the world are unhappy, without ever realizing that a) they don’t have to be unhappy, and b) being happy is within their power to choose…. It’s too bad, really, because that unhappiness is part of what makes people go wonky, losing integrity, honor, and any sense of morality, in order to reach for an illusion, an illusion of happiness that, even if grasped, will drift away and vanish, like smoke in a breeze….

This little mini-diatribe was intended to be more…. more clear, more inspiring, more helpful in getting people to think in different ways…. However, I seem to have lost that thread, and it’s getting a bit obscure, and thick…. So, I’m going to switch to old-school, and politely ask Smart Bee to give me the right words to accomplish that intent, without having to subject y’all to another thousand words of pedantic persuasion…. Well, that’s how it’s supposed  to work, anyway…. If not, at least it will have been more palatable, with more chocolate chips….

“Going to bed with a woman never hurt a ballplayer. It’s staying up all night looking for them that does you in.” — Casey Stengel

“Pizza is a lot like sex.  When it’s good, it’s really good.  When it’s bad, it’s still pretty good.” — Smart Bee

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

“Man errs as long as he strives.” — Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Faust

“‘T is but a part we see, and not a whole.” — Alexander Pope (1688-1744) — Essay on Man, Epistle i, Line 60

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

“Eternity is a mere moment, just long enough for a joke.” — Hermann Hesse

Okay, so, that works, sort of….. My apologies…. It’s not as clear as I’d hoped, though it’s quite good, in its own small way…. Not bad directions, if one is accustomed to pearls…. I’ve got it! Here is an example of how happiness works, and is available for use by anyone who wishes to use it….

I’m happy now…. I’m done….

(That’s it…. that’s the secret….. No? Not clear yet? Ah, well…. Well, we’ll try again later, ffolkes…. just remember, you CAN be happy, any time you wish…. It’s all a matter of choice….  Bonus? Nobody can take the choice away from you….)

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Comedy_Tragedy

Retrospective, defined in folly….

Yesterday
I wrote a poem.

It bled out of my head,
like I’d been struck with
an axe,
right through the artery,
in the neck,
spraying blood around
everywhere,
like a pulsing garden hose….

It hurt, at first,
then came the feeling,

of quick relief,
of timeless beauty,
 
of pain avenged,
of lust aroused,

of outrage aflame,
of deep compassion,

of endless empathy,
of truest love….

Now it’s gone, cast away
like pearls before twine.

(Grin…)

You thought
I was going to call you
a pig,
didn’t you?

Hah!

Well, you’re not.
You’re a person.

I know, because
you’re reading this poem…
if that’s what it is.
I think it is,
so,
maybe it is.

Or, maybe,
it will be,
someday, when it
grows up,
and learns to rhyme.
Whew…
Just in time…..

That’s all.
Reality often sucks wind,
y’know?

S’okay, though….
It keeps us busy,
and out of some of the
mischief,
so much part
of our
nature.

We all can do
only what we
do.

Or, don’t.

Two sides, one coin.

~~ gigoid ~~


Written 8/31/2014

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Peace76

    Today’s old-school pearl is pretty simple; it’s made up of good advice on how to live your life in a manner of your own choosing…. In short, it’s mostly stuff you already know, for peace is ALWAYS there inside all of us, just waiting for us to realize we are connected to the Universe at all times, if only we can remember….

“Nobody has so many friends that he can afford to lose one.” — Edward Abbey

“It is the edge and temper of the blade that make a good sword, not the richness of the scabbard; and so it is not money or possessions that make man considerable, but his virtue.” — Seneca

“. . is to attempt seeing Truth without knowing Falsehood. It is the attempt to see the Light without knowing Darkness. It cannot be.” — Frank Herbert, Dune

“Think all you speak, but speak not all you think.” — Smart Bee

“You can’t get wet from the word ‘water’.”  — Alan Watts

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

“We must learn to be still in the midst of activity and to be vibrantly alive in repose.” — Indira Gandhi

“When I was born, death kissed me. I kissed it back.” — Rainer Maria Rilke

“The whole life of man is but a point of time; let us enjoy it, therefore, while it lasts, and not spend it to no purpose.” — Plutarch — Of the Training of Children

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There! Did it….. A great sense of relief infuses me; getting this done is almost made worthwhile by so feeling, I must say. Have said so, I’ll torment you no further, but, rather, take my leave, while the leaving is good…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes; as can be seen, it will take a lot to stop me…. Let’s just hope the PTB continue to ignore my intransigence, chalking it up to insanity…. Yeah, that’s the ticket….

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

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

Which is Why….

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

gigoid, the dubious

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

dozer3


À bientôt, mon cherí….


			

Subsidized pets never rust…..

Ffolkes,
If there is one place in the world I would prefer to avoid during the month of July, Bakersfield would be that place. Hot, dusty, and ugly were the three adjectives that came to mind as I walked out of the bus terminal. The grimy faces of tired, old buildings lined the street, harsh neon lights looking pale and wan in the harsh, oppressive light of the sun. Nobody else appeared to be out in the midday heat except yours truly, acting the part of either mad dog, or Englishman, for the entertainment of whatever gods happened to be watching.

I knew of at least one goddess who would be doing so with rapt attention, for she is the one who sent me to this godforsaken hole in the wall of the universe, and she will want to know what I’m doing at all times…. The gods aren’t the most trusting of employers, but they pay well for success…. Of course, what I’ll do with all these old drachmae, I don’t know, but I’ll worry about it later…. Being the private eye on call to Olympus isn’t the easiest gig, but I like it, even if some of the major goddesses can be a bit testy about their entitlements…. As long as the money is good, I can put up with a lot of foolishness….

I might take this a bit further, but I just realized that this idea has been done already…. almost. “The Long, Dark Tea-Time of the Soul” by Douglas Adams, tells the story of a PI involved in a case with a number of the old Norse gods…. Odin, Loki, and the like. I didn’t realize it until I typed “drachmae”, which is not Norse, but still reminded me of the adventures of Dirk Gently in a hostile universe that Adams put out. Not wishing to plagiarize his idea any further, we will leave that story right where it is, to die a long, painful, and horrible death, alone….. good thing I have no emotional attachment to it, or I’d feel some guilt….

Here’s a good piece of advice for all you youngsters out there…. Never….. wait, that’s too long…. okay, try this….. Always…. No, that’s the same thing, just backwards…. hmmm…. Sometimes…. there you go, that works….

Sometimes, you win, and sometimes, you lose. Sometimes you’re the bug, sometimes you’re the windshield. And sometimes, it all makes sense, until it doesn’t, and reality resumes its inevitable march toward our own personal doom…. so don’t sweat it. The end of the road will get here when it gets here, and not a moment before. We may as well enjoy the time while we’re waiting, eh?…. So be it…

I don’t know about y’all but I thinks that’s about enough of that nonsense for one morning…. Shall we Pearl?…..
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“Friendship is the only thing in the world concerning the usefulness of which all mankind are agreed.” — Cicero

Okay, let’s see…. I can agree with the part that says “Friendship is”…leave out some words leading up to “concerning the usefulness of which all mankind are agreed.” Obviously, I am contesting the “only thing” part, yes? Okay… so, let’s see if there are any other useful things “concerning which all mankind agrees”….

Honesty?…. Well, I think this one would probably be acknowledged as being useful by everyone asked, but I’m also pretty certain that many of them would be lying, which kind of negates that whole idea, doesn’t it? Yes, it does…. nod your head up and down, and let’s go on….

Loyalty?…. Hmm… I think this one would most likely run about the same as honesty. Everybody is going to say that they believe in loyalty, but some of them aren’t going to be telling the truth about it, not if 25,000 years of history are considered as evidence.

Love?…. I don’t think there would be any sort of consensus here; too many folks have had bad experiences with love, or more accurately, bad experiences from NOT having being loved, or given an opportunity to love. This would definitely NOT be a subject on which all would agree…. not even close….

Compassion? Fair Play? Opera?  Nope, I don’t think any of these would come close to being a consensus choice, much as some of us would like them to be, or not be, in the case of Opera….

Crispy bacon?  This, I believe, comes as close as anything else to being universally agreed upon. Of course, a lot of vegans and other cholesterol fanatics would SAY they disagree, but you know that deep in their hearts, they really, really WANT that bacon….  🙂

Okay, so maybe Cicero had a valid point. There doesn’t seem to be much of anything that all of mankind can agree upon, which is hardly a surprise, given the stubborn individuality most people cling to like a life-saver in a storm at sea. In fact, this innate insistence on being unique is part of the problem, as it makes it hard for people to accept that other people may feel the higher emotions, such as compassion, or honesty, when they are seldom present in themselves. They do not trust themselves, so they cannot trust others…. only when they are in the presence of a real friend can these virtues be shown….
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My Fancy

I painted her a gushing thing,
With years about a score;
I little thought to find they were
A least a dozen more;
My fancy gave her eyes of blue,
A curly auburn head:
I came to find the blue a green,
The auburn turned to red.

She boxed my ears this morning,
They tingled very much;
I own that I could wish her
A somewhat lighter touch;
And if you ask me how
Her charms might be improved,
I would not have them added to,
But just a few removed!

She has the bear’s ethereal grace,
The bland hyaena’s laugh,
The footstep of the elephant,
The neck of a giraffe;
I love her still, believe me,
Though my heart its passion hides;
“She’s all my fancy painted her,”
But oh! how much besides!

Lewis Carroll

Here is something a bit different from Lewis Carroll, whom we all know and love from “Through the Looking Glass: Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”. I think this poem tells a lot about the British culture of the time in which he lived, as I find a lot of pieces from that time that echo the sentiments described herein. At any rate, it’s a fun read, and brought me a little smile at the end, so I hope you enjoy it, too…..
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“We may not be able to persuade Hindus that Jesus and not Vishnu should govern their spiritual horizon, nor Moslems that Lord Buddha is at the center of their spiritual universe, nor Hebrews that Mohammed is a major prophet, nor Christians that Shinto best expresses their spiritual concerns, to say nothing of the fact that we may not be able to get Christians to agree among themselves about their relationship to God. But all will agree on a proposition that they possess profound spiritual resources.  If, in addition, we can get them to accept the further proposition that whatever form the Deity may have in their own theology, the Deity is not only external, but internal and acts through them, and they themselves give proof or disproof of the Deity in what they do and think; if this further proposition can be     accepted, then we come that much closer to a truly religious situation on earth.” — Norman Cousins, from his book “Human Options”

Mr. Cousins speaks in a very even-handed manner, with respect for all of the philosophies, religions, and churches he mentions in his statement. Though it is possibly too complex for the average follower of any religion to take in at one sitting, it does make a reasonable allegation, and leads the reader on a quite logical train of thought.

What fails to stimulate complete agreement in me is the question, “why do we make the assumption that what we need on earth is “a truly religious situation.” (whatever THAT means… I mean, really…. a religious ‘situation’? And who defines ‘truly’?…)  It is always a puzzle to me how people can use so much mental energy to chase themselves into a maze with no exit……

First, define a ‘religious situation’, and tell me who gets to decide when it is ‘truly religious’…. second explain why we need it on earth…. third, well, never mind, we’ll get to the abuse later….  Anyway, it puzzles me, how someone who can make the above argument, which shows a knowledge of religions which is at least wide, if not particularly deep, can also make such an unwarranted assumption.

I understand one purpose of such a statement, which would be to at least TRY to infuse some unifying connections between the various modes of thought, to get them to see other views, at least hypothetically. That purpose is a good one…. but trying to make the intuitive leap to a melding of religious thought is asking too much of people who, by the very nature of their beliefs, are unaccustomed to that kind of acceptance.  Indeed, one of the primary identifying characteristics of almost any “worshiper” is an extreme resistance to thinking….at all…. much less thinking about acceptance of another religion’s validity.

I believe Mr. Cousins is right to wish that everyone, of whatever religion they are, would open themselves to the idea that other religions have the same right to exist as do they, even though those beliefs are different from their own. A little bit of tolerance for the other fellow’s ideas can go a long way toward keeping the peace between nations, or people….

It’s a small thing, but with very large effect on how people treat each other…. It is also the most needed change to human nature that I see, the one that could lead the way to other changes to morality and ethics, thereby providing mankind with the tools needed to survive…..

You cannot face it steadily, but this thing’s for sure,
That time is no healer: the patient is no longer here.
— T.S. Eliot
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Homer: “Marge, is this a happy ending or a sad ending?”
Marge: “It’s an ending. That’s enough.”
— The Simpsons

I know exactly how Marge feels…. and it’s enough…. 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!

Plastic flowers never grow….

Ffolkes,
Great…. I’ve just discovered that there is a species of spider small enough to live in a laptop computer. As I sat here, gazing at the screen with my usual (for this time in the morning) vacuous stare, a tiny spider-shadow began to lower itself down in front of the screen. I followed its progress, and, lo, it disappeared! The only place for it to have gone is inside the computer…. so now, I have an entirely new universe of things to worry about…..

Like how many of them are in there? Or, are they poisonous to humans? Or, just what are they finding in there to eat? And that thought itself brought in a whole new set of visions, of tiny hordes of livestock infesting my computer, dodging the keys as they get pressed, but otherwise enjoying free reign to wander around in there…. Yikes!

Actually, when I look at the images that my mind provides when I consider this scenario, it reminds me of some of the animated movies that have come out recently. Take some weird, micro-sized, cute, witty, cheerful creatures, put them in some magnificently odd and beautiful landscapes; throw in a good screenwriter, and you’ve got a summer hit on your hands. The Adventures of Laptop Louise you could call it…. or not. But, it’s just odd enough to make some money for somebody….

Also interesting it is to note that once again, Life adapts to reality. I’ve always liked and admired spiders; any creature that reduces the number of flies in the world is my kind of creature…. also, having cut my literary teeth on Spider Man and his ilk, I know there is a lot about them to admire, from a physical standpoint.

Fast, strong, often poisonous, and with the ability to make web, a thoroughly competent hunter, with the tools to capture and subdue any prey within its size parameters. Once humans are gone from this plane of existence, I would vote for them as one of the most logical replacements at the top of the food chain….. they have the added bonus of not having too large a brain for their own good…. which has obviously been our problem all along….

Ah well, this kind of meandering will never get me to the end of this Pearl, interesting though it may be. That’s the trouble with being a polymath… it is ALL so damned interesting, I can’t keep from going for it…. So be it. Shall we Pearl?….
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Today we will begin with an old school pearl…. here are a series of pearls, each with its own point. Together, they make a statement of belief, or at least of agreement. That belief is left as an exercise for the Gentle Reader…..

Government is the only known enemy of intelligent life. — Smart Bee

“The only way to combat criminals is by not voting for them.”– Dayton Allen

“To preserve liberty, it is necessary that the whole body of the people possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them.” — Richard Henry Lee
    Okay, so it isn’t completely old school… the old school wouldn’t have had art…. but the message is the same. I’m going to be indulgent, and just state it for you, so you can give it away as needed….. There is NOBODY in the government you can trust. Nobody. They are all just clones of Herr Goerring, though most are not as arrogantly honest about it.

It would behoove all of us to keep a close eye on them, and keep our powder dry….. because, no matter how many times, or how eloquently they tell you, they are NOT interested at all in serving YOUR best interests. The only interests they have are their own, and nothing will change that, no matter how many times they say it…. so fuck ’em, and keep your weapons handy…. unless, of course, you enjoy your slavery…..
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OPERA:  For centuries now, Opera has been the foremost method of humiliation available to the security forces. It began in the late 1600s, when peasant rebels were made to dress up as ridiculously fat people and get up on wooden planks in front of hundreds of their peers and shout the same things over and over and over, to a musical accompaniment.  By the time the French Revolution came rolling along, it was the aristocrats who were forced to the stage to sing, gesticulate wildly and loudly perform plays devised to spread Revolutionary propaganda. Nowadays, Opera has been driven underground, but is still carried out by the perverse, the deviant, and those with very big tits (both men and women), their audiences made up almost exclusively of establishment figures. — Daniel Bowen’s TOXIC CUSTARPEDIA

To my way of looking at stuff, opera falls into the same category as William Shakespeare, i.e., that of the world’s most over-rated entities. Many, many people will gush and spew in praise of opera, proclaiming its beauty, its relevance, its influence on Art, and all sorts of nonsensical claims, none of which are either apparent to me, or believable by any means.

Why should I buy into a centuries old delusion? I don’t care who you are, you can sit there all damn day and night, and tell me that an operatic solo is an expression of beauty and power, and it will still sound as if someone has stepped on a cat’s tail. My ear has near-perfect pitch, and I’ve never heard an opera singer, other than maybe Pavarotti, who could hold a note well. (Pavarotti, it must be noted, does not limit himself to strictly operatic performances….)

The whole idea of it makes me uncomfortable, as the ones who claim to enjoy it seem to accept entire rooms full of people spontaneously bursting into song. In fucking Italian, no less, or German! What is the damn point of that? To make it less understandable? It most certainly does that part well…..

I’ve been to several operas; I try not to formulate opinions without at least checking out that about which I opine. Seeing them in person did nothing to alleviate the sense of ridiculousness I felt, or the pity I felt for those poor singers, in those ridiculous period clothing outfits, prancing around the stage hitting those notes that will shatter crystal. It must be extremely humiliating for them, and some of them actually have pretty good voices. They’d do a lot better to grab a guitar, a microphone, and hit the road….

I guess it all comes back to that sense of elitism that people seem to be so invested in….. People like to think that certain things show class, or culture; opera, symphony, golf, yacht racing, polo, all are activities that are, in the minds of the public, associated with wealth, privilege, and culture. Shakespeare, and a few other literary figures, get added to that list, as the tides of fashion change regularly, influencing what is in vogue. But none of the importance that people place in any of these things is inherent. None of it is really true at all; mankind loves his delusions, and if those delusions are involved with self-image, then the less it approaches reality, the better they like it.

You see, I think they all suspect that if they ever really stopped to look closely at all the things they hold as important, they would find themselves with a fist full of sand, or smoke, which  disappears the moment one opens the fingers wide. They know in their hearts that all of what they are so proud of about themselves is false, so this makes them cling even more strongly to the delusion they are not fools. Unfortunately for them, the universe knows already….

Shakespeare isn’t all that good; I find most of his work to be heavy, obscure, and just not very much fun to watch or read. Opera is worse, as once one has sat down to listen, it is impolite to get up and leave, which has been my impulse in the first few minutes of each one I’ve attended. Maybe it’s just me, but I’m just not impressed at how loud, or how high a singer can sing. There has to be something to connect to for the average Joe, something to which they can relate, and the opera I’ve heard seldom comes close….. So, next time somebody tells you how much they enjoyed the opera, take a close look at their level of sanity, because they are definitely delusional…..
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Couplets on Wit
I
But our Great Turks in wit must reign alone
And ill can bear a Brother on the Throne.

II
Wit is like faith by such warm Fools profest
Who to be saved by one, must damn the rest.

III
Some who grow dull religious strait commence
And gain in morals what they lose in sence.

IV
Wits starve as useless to a Common weal
While Fools have places purely for their Zea.

V
Now wits gain praise by copying other wits
As one Hog lives on what another sh—.

VI
Wou’d you your writings to some Palates fit
Purged all you verses from the sin of wit
For authors now are so conceited grown
They praise no works but what are like their own.

Alexander Pope

Not your average classical poet, was he?….. No comments, just enjoy….
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I can’t consider it cheating when it takes this much out of me. I have a multitude of stuff to do today in the Big Blue Room, so I’d best be getting to it. 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!

Layered in pugnacious pyjamas….

Ffolkes,
I’m beginning to think that my habit of writing an average of 1500 words every morning is depleting my store of inspiration; if not, it is at least getting weary, and hiding from me more often. I can’t really blame it, as I’ve asked it to perform miracles almost every day, turning pearls, and what is in my head, into something worth putting down on paper (note: that phrase is rapidly losing all meaning, as computers become more ubiquitous….). That’s a lot of miracles in just about 300 days.

“This writing business. Pencils and whatnot. Overrated, if you ask me.” — Winnie the Pooh

But, having set myself the goal of posting a Pearl every day (set long ago, and too late now to worry about changing…), I feel duty-bound to make the best effort I can to meet that goal. So, I carry on, in spite of the increasing difficulty. I suppose it has to do with how writing is not for the weak-minded, or for those with no staying power to their will. Since I’m now not a chef, or a psych tech, or an executive assistant, writing is what I do, so I’ve left myself with very little choice but to keep on keepin’ on, as Jerry and the boys would have said….

I see my life go drifting like a river
From change to change; I have been many things –
A green drop in the surge, a gleam of light
Upon a sword, a fir tree on a hill,
An old slave grinding at a heavy quern,
A king sitting upon a chair of gold –
And all these things were wonderful and great;
But now I have grown nothing, knowing all.
Ah! Druid, Druid, how great webs of sorrow
Lay hidden in that small slate-coloured thing!
— William Butler Yeats, “Fergus and the Druid”

What does that mean for this process? Well, nothing really…. but it got me two more paragraphs of semi-literate, if relatively meaningless discussion of a personal problem, and a great pearl from Yeats, and that ain’t nothing…. so, we’ll just use that as a very, very loose segue into today’s dive for pearls…. shall we Pearl, then?…..
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“I’m just sitting here watching the wheels go round and round.” — John Lennon

Men are afraid of women… hence all the jokes about them taking over, over slyly ruling us without us knowing it. Men’s fears of just that thing are what cause him to hate women, because they do not understand them, and fear arises out of lack of understanding. Here are a few examples of such lies, the lies that perpetuate the war between the sexes…..

“My notion of a wife at 40 is that a man should be able to change her, like a bank note, for two twenties.” — Warren Beatty

A lady is one who only shows her underwear intentionally. — Smart Bee

— Yo momma……so fat she has to buy two airline tickets. — Smart Bee

“A beautiful woman is paradise for the eyes, hell for the soul, and purgatory for the purse.” — Smart Bee

“Passionate kiss like spider web, lead to undoing of fly.” — Confucius say (No, he didn’t, but liars don’t care….)

Really, really sexist, misogynistic, and paranoid, yes? Yes….

The mere existence of these jokes, and others like them, indicates clearly what men are afraid of in women, and that is their sexuality. We… well, men, not necessarily we men, because not all of us hate them… No I don’t understand them, but that doesn’t make them any less fascinating or wonderfully different. I am aware of my own self, and my own powers, and they have naught to do with what women can do; I feel no need to compare the two, or to assume one is stronger or better. They are just different, and what is different about women is not to be feared, even if not understood. It is just to be learned, and appreciated, that’s all….and the learning is a totally awesome trip, I assure you….

But, back to the sexuality that men fear. Their fear exists because these men have never learned to understand themselves, or their place in the scheme of things; that makes them unable to understand women, and turns their ignorance to fear, and from thence to hatred and abuse against them.

Men cannot stand the thought that a woman might be more important than him, and that is a certain sign of lack of confidence, and of ignorance.  Men who know their place in life, and who are confident of their own ability to cope with that place and its demands, have no need or desire to be more important than anyone; they are complete within themselves….

Too many men in this world don’t come anywhere close to this kind of self-knowledge; most go through life without exercising more than two neurons at once, and those tend to lose function whenever the blood goes elsewhere than the brain (such as during an erection). Most men are so afraid of women that they spend half their life telling jokes like the above, and spreading the nonsensical lies that perpetuate this atrocity.

Yes, atrocity, because it is this fear and loathing, of both themselves and women, that leads to issues such as domestic abuse, sex trafficking, prostitution, and abuse of children. The only women who are actively engaged in these activities are those who have been brainwashed to believe the crap they’ve heard all their lives, and who have given up their own humanity; they are very few in number. Otherwise, it is men who perpetrate these vile actions on women…. all because of their own fear and ignorance…. I say, shame on them, for they are not men, in my world…. They are vicious, irredeemable beasts, and should be put down like the dangerous creatures they are…..

“In the dark colony of night, when I consider man’s magnificent capacity for malice, madness, folly, envy, rage, and destructiveness, and I wonder whether we shall not end up as breakfast for newts and polyps, I seem to hear the muffled cries of all the words in all the books with covers closed.” — Leo Rosten
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“The power of a bold idea uttered publicly in defiance of dominant opinion cannot be easily measured. Those people who speak out in such a way as to shake up not only the self-assurance of their enemies, but the complacency of their friends, are precious catalysts for change.” — Howard Zinn

I would like to take a moment here to acknowledge a very honorable, and brave, act by the President of this country, Barack Obama. Yesterday, in a press conference, the President put the power of his office behind the defense of human rights, by stating that his administration was fully convinced that legislation that denied marriage to gay couples, or to anyone else, was directly in opposition to the Constitution by which we live. He made this a national announcement, and set the stage for what is sure to be a fire-storm of protest from the political and religious factions that have made this issue their rallying cry.

The idea that marriage between people who are not male and female is acceptable is one whose time has obviously arrived. Current polls nationwide have borne out the fact that a large majority of the population agrees with that assessment. But it doesn’t detract from the bravery required to mount that horse at this time, for it had to be known that it would be a decision that would create a lot of noise from those who feel differently.

So, I am, for once, proud of what a President has done; it is something I cannot recall ever happening in the past, at all. Most of the time I am forced to shake my head and hide my face in shame, agreeing fully with the Dixie Chicks when they apologized for Bush to the rest of the world.

Let us all take this time to appreciate how this President has taken the reins of leadership firmly in hand, to direct our country toward a future where human rights are more important than living in fear and ignorance…. Yay, Barry!…. Good Job!

“A commitment to diversity is not a commitment to blacks or gays or any other group. A commitment to diversity is a commitment to respect and value each individual employee (person) for who they are, a commitment to help them become the best they can be by honoring their nature.” — Callan Williams
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OPERA
For centuries now, Opera has been the foremost method of humiliation available to the security forces. It began in the late 1600s, when peasant rebels were made to dress up as ridiculously fat people and get up on wooden planks in front of hundreds of their peers and shout the same things over and over and over, to a musical accompaniment. By the time the French Revolution came rolling along, it was the aristocrats who were forced to the stage to sing, gesticulate wildly and loudly perform plays devised to spread Revolutionary propaganda.  Nowadays, Opera has been driven underground, but is still carried out by the perverse, the deviant, and those with very big tits (both men and women), their audiences made up almost exclusively of establishment figures. — Daniel Bowen’s TOXIC CUSTARPEDIA

That’s what I’m talking about! Opera, to me, seems like a perfect example of how a lot of folks get all worked up over something that everyone else says is cool, but really has nothing to justify that opinion. Sure, there is some good music that came out of opera, and a few cool songs (far fewer than any opera buff would have us believe…), but for the most part it is just a bunch of hype that normally smart folks seem to fall for on a regular basis, just because a consensus says they should. It seems to me that anything that anyone does because they ‘should’ gets exactly what they deserve, i.e., twaddle… and a good portion of it.

So, don’t fall for this nonsense folks. Remember, friends don’t let friends go to an opera… unless they’re mad at them….
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Underneath this sable hearse
Lies the subject of all verse,–
Sidney’s sister, Pembroke’s mother.
Death, ere thou hast slain another,
Learn’d and fair and good as she,
Time shall throw a dart at thee.
— Ben Jonson (1573-1637) — Epitaph on the Countess of Pembroke

And as she looked around, she saw how Death the consoler,
Laying his hand upon many a heart, had healed it forever.
— Henry W. Longfellow (1807-1882) — Evangeline, Part ii

“For good men but see death, the wicked taste it.” — Johnson

“Be happy while you’re living, for you’re a long time dead.” — Scottish Proverb

Mankind has always had a fascination with Death, which, I suppose, is natural, considering it is one of the few things in this universe that all of us will experience at the same time in our lives. It is the Great Equalizer, in its finest sense; no one escapes. There are probably more books and treatises on Death, or involving some manifestation of Death, than of any other subject, save perhaps Love, another subject that deeply affects us all.

My writing about it probably enters the realm of superfluousness, but I found these great pearls, so I couldn’t resist…. Besides which, as I move ever closer to my own time to have a face to face with the Reaper, I find myself turning my thoughts to the subject, somewhat morbidly I’m sure….

How each of us faces that particular moment is about as personal as things can be, for we are all ourselves, little as we may understand that phrase, and the things we have learned in our lives are what will determine whether we are able to greet Death with dignity, or pitch a fit of major proportions….

I’m not going to go any further into this at this time, as I’m not so close to my time as all that. But, I will say that I hope that I can approach my own demise with some aplomb; I really hate to make a scene. It’s so embarrassing to wash one’s dirty linen in public, and I hope I have more panache than that…. I guess we’ll see, won’t we…. like we had a choice in the matter….  🙂
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“Most people want security in this world, not liberty.” — H.L. Mencken

Mr. Mencken has put his finger firmly on what I see as wrong in our culture today, to wit: the average person in this country has assumed the “slave” mentality, and has adopted security as their preferred state over that of being free. Far too many of my countrymen, and women, have given up the right to think for themselves, opting instead to let the beloved ruling class decide for them what they may think, and what they may do.

They have given up this right for the illusion of security; I say illusion for the word ‘security’ has no meaning in Reality. One can never be completely secure; it just isn’t possible in a world where there are so many people devoted to taking advantage of one another.

Most folks who allow this degradation of their own liberty don’t realize that they have chosen an illusion. They believe that the people who have promised them security can not only give it to them, but are doing so because they care about what happens to their constituents. This, of course, couldn’t be further from the truth, for not only are they NOT doing it for their constituents, they are deliberately lying to them to get them to believe it.

The actual danger of being taken advantage of does not come from outside our country, but from those very folks who tell us we need to be secure, rather than free.  The very people who they think are helping them are the ones who are ripping them off with both hands….

“Any body of men who believe in hell will persecute whenever they have the power.” — Joseph M. McCabe (1867-1957)

It’s enough to make a man want to drink… a lot…. At least when I’m stone cold drunk I don’t feel so bad about it. Of course, in that state I don’t feel bad about anything, so it’s obviously not a solution, but it does offer some temporary relief from having to watch it happen. Ah well, so much for the American Dream, eh?…..
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Well, I must say, this has been one of the most interesting, and chaotic Pearls that I’ve ever composed. It seemed to go all over the map as I was writing, taking me from subject to subject willy-nilly, and having a grand time about it. On looking back over it all, it seems to have held together fairly well, so I’m going to go with it once again without trying to make any sense out of why…. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you….

 


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

Kowabunga!

Apocalyptic seashell fire sale blues….

Ffolkes,
A gloomy mass of clouds lined the horizon, promising rain in the near future. Beneath them, a line of rolling dunes stretched eastward, leading to a high wall of mountains in the far distance. Closer, perhaps only two miles distant, sat the caravansary where the night would be passed, safe behind the walls separating the trees and water from the desert all around. The camels lining the trail, impatient to get to the water they could smell, shifted and groaned, wanting to be off. But Ahmed waited, continuing to scan the distance to the oasis with a sharp gaze.

Rumors of vicious Tuareg raiders attacking caravans had circled the bazaar in Alexandria before their departure, three days past, and Ahmed had no intention of allowing his group of merchants and their wares to become loot for the Tuareg campfires to celebrate that night. His complement of mercenary guards, well-paid to assure loyalty, were spread evenly through the caravan, disguised as merchants, but with weapons close at hand in case of trouble. As his keen eyes continued to watch for any movement or disturbed birds that would betray hidden groups of raiders, he smiled, congratulating himself for his foresight. “Let them attack,” he thought to himself, “we shall give them a swift journey to Hell’s Gate!”  Turning to his second, he nodded once, and the command to move passed swiftly down the well-dressed line of burdened camels, until the entire caravan once more trod slowly toward the caravansary in the near distance.

Well…. that was different. This passage was brought to you by the fine folks at Imagine, the fantasy and fiction marketplace down on Highway 29. gratis, as an example of what may be found in their immense catalog of storied beginnings and exciting endings. They’re reasonably priced too; I got this one for free, just because it was more than three days old….not a bad deal, considering the short story I’ll get out of it should bring in some decent change, provided, of course, I can find a buyer for it in today’s competitive market. Until I get that finished though, let’s get on with today’s Pearl, or Pearls, as the case may be…..
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In our society, the Republicans set out to prove that the Democrats can not be trusted to run the government. And the Democrats set out to prove that the Republicans can not be trusted to run our government. The real problem here is that both the Democrats and the Republicans have come up with something which is absolutely true and perfectly correct. This means that the people get to pull some sort of horrible trick on themselves and live with their choice for four years.–No attribution given…

I’m sorry there is no attribution for this, because I’d have liked to shake that person’s hand. The truth of this proposition should be obvious to even the hard to convince, for it has been proven time after time, in every election in my lifetime, and if things don’t change, will be true for as long as it takes to finish the end-game scenario we have been hurtling toward for a long time. It’s kind of like the weather….everybody talks about it, but nobody ever does anything to change, or control it.

Our society has, by all the information available, effectively sealed the fate of our species, by refusing to acknowledge our true place in the ecosphere, instead choosing to assume that the elitist attitudes fostered by Christian mores is fact, and that the rest of creation is ours to do with as we please. This blindness to the truth has brought us to the brink of species extinction, and it won’t be much longer before what we have done so far cannot be reversed. In fact, there is ample evidence that we reached that point in the latter decades of the 20th century, and the final solution is not far off now.

It’s too bad, too….. we had such promise as a species. Poetry, philosophy, art, all of our most creative characteristics have not been sufficient to keep the assholes among us from fouling our own nest, and it is now too late to do much about it, other than continue to fiddle while Rome burns around us…….

” [W]e shall continue to have a worsening ecologic crisis until we reject the Christian axiom that nature has no reason for existence save to serve man.” — Lynn White, Jr., “The Historical Roots of Our Ecologic Crisis”, Science V. 155 No. 3767 (10 March 1967), pp. 1203-1207.
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“Mother Theresa epitomizes for me the blinkered charitableness upon which we pride ourselves and for which we expect reward in this world and the next.   There is very little on earth that I hate more than that.” — Feminist Germaine Greer

I’m not sure why Ms. Greer is identified as a feminist; it seems rather superfluous in this context. Her sentiment, though most likely very unpopular with the average run of folks, makes me want to say, “YES! At last, someone says it out loud!” That will no doubt bring me some flak as well, but, so be it. 

I’ve always thought that it takes a very condescending nature to be as falsely selfless as Mother Theresa. She must be one of the most horrible people to be around that I can imagine. Can you imagine having to listen to her endless judgments and smarmy, self-serving, overweening pride in how pious she believes herself to be, on a regular basis? I’m afraid I’d become rather homicidal in short order; I don’t deal well with self-satisfied, judgmental folks, who have nothing better to do than tell everyone else how uncharitable they are in comparison to themselves. Makes me want to bite them, hard.

I’ll bet the Popes love the fact that she buries herself in various poor ghettos around the world; it keeps them from having to talk to her very often.  Call me uncharitable if you like; you’d be wrong, but hey, it’s your dime. I just don’t want the world to think that she is the best example of selflessness; it’s more like selfishness to me……a perfect example of why those who receive charity tend to violently dislike those who try to lift them up ‘in service to God’; what a crock! It’s just another way for those giving the help to feel superior and self-satisfied with their own piety…….a fancy, long winded way to say they are barefaced liars, too cowardly to admit their own selfishness…..

“All of us necessarily hold many casual opinions that are ludicrously wrong simply because life is far too short for us to think through even a small fraction of the topics that we come across.” — Julian Simon  (And some, like Mother Theresa, never bother to question their dogmatic beliefs, to test their validity against reality…..)

One final thought on this subject…..and, sorry, but my karma just ran over your dogma.

A form of open-mindedness is the pathway to wisdom. Close your mind and you  open the way for ignorance to flourish, but you will never even know it. — our old friend Anonymous
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“Those who really deserve praise are the people who, while human enough to enjoy power, nevertheless pay more attention to justice than they are compelled to do by their situation.” — Thucydides

It’s been quite a while since I last saw, or used, a quote from Thucydides; I’ve always liked his take on things. This is a very astute observation, and a good yardstick to measure the relative worth of a politician.  Politicians, dealing as they do with power every day, are the most susceptible to its degrading qualities, so we need some way to decide whether or not we want them to continue to hold such power in their sweaty little hands. Without going through the entire list of the current crop of bozoids in office, I can still say with some confidence that I cannot think of a single example of a person such as described who has been elected in the past 60 years. The only reason I don’t include politicians before that time in this list is that I wasn’t there, and therefore am not qualified to judge that; one can’t rely on written history to give an accurate picture.

So, in the interest of fairness, I am challenging my readers…… give me a name of someone in the public eye in the last 60 years who meets the standard laid down by Thucydides above, and provide some evidence, and I will change my tune to include that information. If anyone can come up with one, I’ll be very surprised; encouraged as well, because the existence of one would imply the possible existence of others who share this attribute. We’ll see if I get any names……
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“I have witnessed and greatly enjoyed the first act of everything which Wagner created, but the effect on me has always been so powerful that one act was quite sufficient; whenever I have witnessed two acts I have gone away physically exhausted; and whenever I have ventured an entire opera the result has been the next thing to suicide.” — Mark Twain, 1891

I can relate to this very well. I pretty much like just about any kind of music there is, but as far as I’m concerned, 90% of the operas I’ve heard or seen were so thrilling I could barely stay awake. In fact, I might have slept through much of the one’s I’ve been to, had not those women on stage been caterwauling in notes so high, my whiskey glass trembled in fear.

Now, I will admit, there are some operatic pieces that are just as advertised; soaring melodies filled exquisitely by powerful, painfully beautiful voices (a couple of the female lead’s pieces in Aida, and the one from an opera I forget; it’s the one the protagonist in the Shawshank Redemption played on the warden’s record machine, broadcasting it for all the prisoners to hear…..incredible voice, whoever it was..). But mostly, it’s just singing in gibberish to boring music, surrounding a hard-to believe, sort-of-like a plot.

I thinks it is so popular because almost everyone is afraid to challenge the widely held belief of it’s superior qualities; they think folks will laugh at them for swimming against the tide of opinion. Me, I couldn’t care less what anybody thinks….as far as I’m concerned, it’s all a pile of doodoo, not worth a fraction of the time some folks spend on it……
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“I love to go down to the schoolyard and watch all the little children jump up and down and run around yelling and screaming…They don’t know I’m only using blanks.” — Emo Phillips

Now, THAT’S funny!  Admit it, you smiled or chuckled, before you could stop yourself. Ghetto humor can be pretty grisly, or shocking, and requires a certain degree of callousness to fully appreciate the point of it. But, it also is very human, dealing as it does with a side of life that only one who has been there can really understand. Most folks wouldn’t be able to think that there was anything funny about somebody shooting, or even pretending to shoot, at kids in a schoolyard; it goes against all their most long-held beliefs about what makes something funny. But to anyone who has spent any time at all on the street, it is hilarious……and that is part of human nature, no matter who might disagree…..

“Like so many Americans, she was trying to construct a life that made sense from things she found in gift shops.” — Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.
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So ends another foray into the wilds of the fringes of thought…. I think it went well today. I have a feeling that some of what I’ve written will bother some folks, a lot. Well, sorry ’bout that, but that is a personal problem, and not my fault. I am perfectly willing to discuss and or argue over any points I have written about, and given enough pertinent evidence, am able to adjust my belief system accordingly. I write my beliefs in pencil, always; it makes it easier to erase and start over than writing them in stone. But, don’t try to come at me with dogma, or with something someone else has indoctrinated you to believe; I will eat your beliefs like M&M’s, and enjoy every one of them. In any case, I hope that y’all have enjoyed today’s little slice of gigoid….. y’all take care out there…..


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

gigoid

Dozer

Kowabunga!