Abusing orphan participles is thirsty work….

Ffolkes,

A little learning is a dangerous thing;
Drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring:
There shallow draughts intoxicate the brain,
And drinking largely sobers us again.

~~ Alexander Pope — Essay on Criticism, Part ii, Line 15 ~~

Mixed days 024

Rural Serenity/Scenes from a Train


Good morning…. As the first greeting between people to mark the opening of conversation, I suppose ‘good morning’ is the most common for the same reason many of our human interactions have evolved over the centuries, to wit: it’s innocuous enough not to piss anybody off, first thing. In a culture created by a creature which has turned the act of killing into high art, such grease to the social wheel needs regular application. Say the wrong thing to the wrong person at the wrong time (which fits just about any modern male in the morning, pre-coffee), one takes one’s life in one’s hands….

Now, that may seem to be a harsh assessment, (not to mention brutally formal), but, I’ve been sitting here thinking about it, and, it seems to fit all the requirements of a true statement, as far as I can figure. But, then, the hour may have influenced how harshly I view things. It isn’t every night I wake up a bit past midnight, to realize sleeping further is out of the question… It’s been happening a lot lately, of course, so, one might think I’m getting used to it. One would be wrong. I hate it. I love my sleep. Sleep is a weapon, mine is dulled, and it pisses me off. Most of the time….

Tonight, or, this morning, whichever the hell it is, I decided, when I realized my pillow’s entreaties for me to return to bed would go unanswered, to NOT get pissed off, but, to use the time more constructively. Hence, the foregoing small dissertation on human interaction. What the hell, it’s better than my usual waffling to find ANY thing to say. Maybe.

I guess that’s not really my judgment to make, other than editorially. Which I already did. So, the question with which we are faced now is this: where the crap do I go now? Ah, I know. I’ll get coffee…. Then, there is at least a minimal chance this  whole thing can be saved…. Hang on, ffolkes, be right back. You’ll know I’m back when you hear the low, but penetrating low growl/groan of near-ecstatic satisfaction, the kind any addict feels on fixing….

Amazing what a bit of caffeine, sugar, and perspective can do. In this particular case, it’s given me the proper solution to our small dilemma, i.e., what now? That, naturally, is to just get on with it, which, one has to admit, is pretty simple and effective….. Let’s see if we can live up to that description….

Shall we Pearl?….

“It’s not denial. I’m just very selective about what I accept as reality.” — Calvin (“Calvin and Hobbes”)

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2001_a_space_odyssey

Image from blu-ray.com via Google Images


A friend sent me this clip yesterday; it stimulated several trains of thought which will probably lead to at least two, or more, rants. I love serendipity. I also love this movie, which is perhaps Hollywood’s best reproduction of a science fiction novel. Arthur C. Clarke’s book was fascinating when it came out, and I was thrilled when it came to the movie screen, even if the ending wasn’t quite as clear as Clarke’s book, in terms of the meaning of the images. But, it worked, and worked well.

After watching this video clip, which is just as disturbing now as it was originally, I recommend watching the sequence shown on the You Tube link page, in which the space ship rockets up to the space station to dock, to the music of the The Blue Danube Waltz, by Strauss, one of the most gorgeous, uplifting movie sequences ever made, in my opinion…. Enjoy, ffolkes, I certainly did….

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The Dawn of Man

2001: A Space Odyssey

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Sandclock .jpg

    Today’s ranting section is comprised of a bit of historical ranting, and a fresh old-school indictment. The following Pearl was the complete post on this blog, mere days after beginning to post on WordPress. I was still working out formatting issues, so I’ve edited it, but, only to the extent of placing the text into the proper positions to fit today’s look and feel. I’ve also used the title used that day, added some art, and cleaned up the punctuation a trifle…. It’s historical because I believe it’s the first post I’ve found in which I ranted in this particular manner, sort an embryonic version of what is usually found in this section these days…. I hope you enjoy it….

From 8/20/2011:

gnomes-in-swiss-panorama_2355264

World-weary gnomes travel light….


Ffolkes,
And, so, it begins again. It’s enough to make you just want to rant sometimes. The news every day bombards us with the craziness going on in the world, providing us with the mental equivalent of dried dung in such quantities the Berbers could make a fire lasting all night. Politicians speak out every day, spewing tons of the most amazing crap, proving with every word just how insane they are, and people keep lapping it up like ice cream. The media that reports all this possibly plays the worst part in the charade, as they continue to report on the most trivial BS they can find. They don’t seem to care whether it is dignified, or if it makes any sense; they just want to increase ratings, and bad news does that better than good.

Oh well, I could rant on this forever, and it’s not going to make any difference. It’s unfortunate, because I’m beginning to believe that it is too late for us humans; we passed the turnoff to sanity a while back, and nobody noticed. Our beloved ruling class has decided that they are not going to buy into the idea that we are killing ourselves, and will hold that opinion all the way to the graveyard. I’m of the opinion that we little people only have one choice left, and that is revolution. The conditions which produced the first American Revolutionary War are fully present today; government is NOT responsive to the will of the people.

Hell, they could care less about the people; to them it’s all about what they can get before getting caught, and even then they don’t get prosecuted. How many bankers and Wall Streeters were put in jail for stealing all that money a few years ago? None…instead we gave them bailout money. Ah hell, that’s enough for one morning; if I continue I’ll end up with indigestion, and I’ve only been up for a half hour. Fuck ’em, they’re not going to ruin my day….today’s Pearls were picked out when I had this on my mind, so they may reflect that…..they’re still a pretty good group….

“If a man will begin with certainties, he shall end in doubts; but if he will be content to begin with doubts, he shall end in certainties.” — Francis Bacon

“When forced to resort to arms for redress, an appeal to the tribunal of the world was deemed proper for our justification. This was the object of the Declaration of Independence.” — Thomas Jefferson

“I never wanted to see anybody die, but there are a few obituary notices I have read with pleasure.” — Clarence Darrow
(How long is YOUR list?…..mine runs to three or four pages….and the first two are just the politicians (most of whom began as lawyers) and preachers).

“I don’t mind if you don’t like my manners. I don’t like them myself. They’re pretty bad. I grieve over them on long winter evenings.” — Humphrey Bogart to Lauren Bacall, in The Big Sleep

Existing order thrives upon ignorance and lies.  Objective truth and individual reason are feared above all.

“The seeker after truth must, once in the course of his life, doubt everything,  as far as is possible.  What is doubtful should even be considered as false. This doubt should not, meanwhile, be applied to ordinary life.” — R. Descartes, “1-3rd Principles of Human Knowledge”

Well, I feel a little better…..reading pearls always helps me regain my equilibrium. Hopefully, they do the same for you….. y’all take care out there…..

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Note from 2015: Before I found this pearl to use today, I had begun collecting an old-school pearl on much the same litany of issues; I’ll throw them in as a bonus, and, to keep up our reputation for always going over the top…. No worries, it’s only a seven-star pearl!…. Enjoy!….

” Whoever has any authority over you, no matter how small, will attempt to use it.” — Quigley’s Law

“When politics and religion are intermingled, a people is suffused with a sense of invulnerability, and gathering speed in their forward charge, they fail to see the cliff ahead of them.” — Dune, by Frank Herbert

“Americans used to roar for Liberty, now they bleat for Security.” — Dr. Norman Vincent Peale

“Why did you hire that idiot?” “You can’t fool all of the people all of the time, so I’m breeding them for stupidity.” — President Weishaupt

“How can people ignore the petitioners in front of the supermarket, then complain about the sorry state of our government?” — Smart Bee

“Pain is just God’s way of hurting you.” — Smart Alec Bee

(Oops! Sorry, wrong  bunch of asininnies. That one doesn’t count….)

“Poor dear, there’s nothing between his ears.” — Margaret Thatcher, about Ronald Reagan, in the 6/2/88 issue of The New York Times

“In times like these, it is helpful to remember that there have always been times like these.” — Paul Harvey (for chuq…)

In French, I believe the phrase is, “Et voilá!”. Or, maybe it was “Houp lá!” Ah well, you know what I mean…. don’t ya?….

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Comedy_Tragedy

    Though I’m up very early, the poem I’ve felt percolating in the vast unknown regions of my mind, where such obscure, random ordering of chaos takes place, isn’t ready to come floating up into my consciousness, where I can open a vein to allow it to leak onto the screen. In addition, I think it would be best not to use anyone else’s work today, in order to spare them the embarrassment of possible association. (Hmph…) Here is one I had forgotten completely; it’ll do nicely….

Unbidden, treasure unfolded…

Taken by surprise, Psyche sits numb
   Amidst tall phrases worn of elder time
Seeking a not-new place from which to come
   No shiny new horizon, nor altered paradigm.

Sudden regrets shape dreams as times maintain
   Shades of memories bring poignant clear sight
Visions of duty, each chosen wild campaign
   Shouts echoing clamors to enfold the night.

Arisen from less than eternal havens of sleep
   Facing moments created in torment and pain
Destiny weighs upon those chosen to keep
   As the sparrow flies now to sever the twain.

Faded pathways lead away, hazy and long
   Burned out verges, so long unknown
Images of yesterday, clear and strong
   Bleed into today, though ’tis but my own……

~~ gigoid ~~


Written 10/19/2012.

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Yin-Yang-symbol-sun-and-moon

    Ffolkes, this pearl needs no explanation, or introduction; it speaks for itself quite well.

“This is my death … and it will profit me to understand it.” — Anne Sexton

“Life is like a coin.  You can spend it any way you wish, but you only spend it once.” — Lillian Dickson

“The mind divides the world into a million pieces. The heart makes it whole.” — Stephen and Ondrea Levine

“Without accepting the fact that everything changes, we cannot find perfect composure.  But unfortunately, although it is true, it is difficult for us to accept it.  Because we cannot accept the truth of transience, we suffer.” — Shunryu Suzuki

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” — Mark Twain

“When you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced.  Live your life so that when you die, the world cries and you rejoice.” — Old Indian saying

“Death is the greatest kick of all. That’s why they save it for last.” — Smart Bee

“Death the last sleep? No, it is the final awakening.” — Sir Walter Scott

“And in the end the love you take is equal to the love you make.” — The Beatles, The last lyric of their last song

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Not surprisingly, it’s done. Again. And, again, I’m left with a vast number of minutes/hours to fill until the rest of the world even begins to stir for the day. Hell, half the people here probably aren’t even home from the bars yet, even on a Tuesday night, in a depressed economy. Ah well, I suppose that’s what books are for…. They’ve always been my go-to recreational choice to fill in some time; another default for me. Too bad the books I just ordered a few days ago haven’t arrived…. Ah well, perhaps an old friend…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes, no matter what damn time it happens….

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

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

Which is Why….

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

gigoid, the dubious

The *only* duly authorized Computer Curmudgeon.

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

dozer3


À bientôt, mon cherí….


			

We can save time by cross stitching the zippers….

Ffolkes,

My writing schedule is a real mess, now that I’m actually sleeping a relatively normal number of hours….. I’m not sure what to do with nine hours of sleep every day; I don’t remember the last time it happened, especially not three or four days in a row…. One might suspect me of cheating somehow, but, how does one do that? How do you cheat to get some sleep? It seems to me that whatever means one might resort to would be legal means, given the very personal, and very critical nature of the issue. Even if there were some kind of legal issues involved, I don’t think I, or anyone else who has the same issue, would waste any of my time caring about getting in trouble over it…. As I heard in a movie recently, bring it on….

Oh, wait, no that was a POTUS who said that, not a cheerleader in a movie…. Well, she said it too, but, ….. never mind…. It was a bit childish, yes, and completely inappropriate, coming from our nation’s highest elected official, especially given the assumed dignity that is supposed to go with the office of the presidency…. Unfortunately, it’s sad, but true, that particular POTUS really had no business ever becoming one anyway; it was only his dad’s extreme skills at clandestine cheating that got him elected, both times…. but, we’re not going to go there today….

That’s a rant of an entirely different color, and we don’t have any rainbow bridles on hand today…. Did you ever get that from him? Did he, you know, Shrub Jr., did he ever strike you as well, kind of gay? He always reminded me of one of those old guys on Polk and Turk in SF, new to the scene, but determined to make up for all the lost years in the closet….. He always had that look in his eye, you know, and that silly little grin? The shit-eating, good-old-boys grin, just among buddies, y’know?…. Like he’s always wanted to join the scene, but, daddy would never give him enough room to stray that way…. A prancer, he looks like a prancer, that’s what he is, one of those who would dance around, waving a champagne bottle, wearing nothing but his cowboy hat and boots, white briefs, and a big shit-eating grin….

Okay, side issue there, sorry…. but, it’s true…. He always did remind me of one of those guys, you know?…. Okay, onward…. Of course, now that we’ve decided to move on, that leaves the very important question of WHERE to move on unanswered in any real way….. Personally, I think we should go go the pirate route, but, there are always a number of injuries when we use that methodology, and I’m low on paper tape for bandages. We could go with the Bossa Nova style we just got delivered yesterday…. No, wait, it isn’t all unpacked yet, and my zoot suit isn’t pressed…. Hmm. Oh hell, I suppose we’re just going to have to resort to the tried and true number seven…. I didn’t want to have to do that, but, hey, parts is parts, right?….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“Don’t follow in my footsteps. I think I stepped in something.” — Smart Bee
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Coming soon to a section near you!….. A grouping of pearls, especially designed and gathered for your personal delectation, with the intent, as always, to further increase your own growing collection of perspicacious elements of philosophical rationale, useful in many ways, for completing your homework, for filling the space in the front of your shoes, or for the bottom of that bird-cage… Created with you in mind, if not always in our hearts…Here now, from the makers of John Daniel’s finest breakfast products, happily if foolishly imbibed, then dutifully processed, by the organic, yet oddly technical, highly-trained consumer you see before you now… Your daily pearls of virtual wisdom, fresh from their own oysters…..

(No, I’m not really having Whiskey for Breakfast, though that IS an event known to have happened in the dim, dark past…. Just foolin’ around, in a sort of literary sense, Heyoka style… Never mind, it’ll never work now…. here, take the pearls, at least they won’t explode…. I think….)

“Fleas can be taught nearly anything that a congressperson can.” — Smart Bee

* Greatest number of citizens who have actually boarded a UFO
* Many newspapers feature “JUMBLE”
* Hourly motel rates
* Vast majority of Elvis movies made here
* Didn’t just give up right away during World War II like some countries we could mention
* Goatees & Van Dykes thought to be worn only by weenies
* Our well-behaved golf professionals
* Fabulous babes coast to coast

— David Letterman’s “Things we can be proud of as Americans”

“The basic fact about human existence is not that it is a tragedy, but that it is a bore.  It is not so much a war as an endless standing in line.” — H. L. Mencken

“Ideology…is an instrument of power;  a defense mechanism against information; a pretext for eluding moral constraints in doing or approving evil with a clean conscience; and finally, a way of banning the criterion of experience, that is, of completely eliminating or indefinitely postponing the pragmatic criteria of success and failure.” — Jean-Francois Revel

“Control of the dissemination of information (or misinformation) is one of the principal sources of political power. Political power is what the discussion of the Internet is really about, not home-made bombs or pornography.” — Michael Goldsby — Letter to Communications of the ACM, Nov 95

(Or, as gigoid put it, back in 1977, “True power is control of the routes of perception.”…. See “another rant, another time…” I’m sure I’ve talked about this before…. I know I have…. but, I haven’t a clue as to when that might have been…. SIGH…) Okay, two more to round this off so it won’t leave any scar tissue….

“In times like these, it is helpful to remember that there have always been times like these.” — Paul Harvey

“Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum viditur.” [Whatever is said in Latin sounds profound]. — Smart Bee

Perfect ending….
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“I have nothing to declare except my genius.” — Oscar had no qualms in doing so, either…. Fortunately for us all, he wasn’t wrong…..

A Vision

Two crowned Kings, and One that stood alone
With no green weight of laurels round his head,
But with sad eyes as one uncomforted,
And wearied with man’s never-ceasing moan
For sins no bleating victim can atone,
And sweet long lips with tears and kisses fed.
Girt was he in a garment black and red,
And at his feet I marked a broken stone
Which sent up lilies, dove-like, to his knees.
Now at their sight, my heart being lit with flame,
I cried to Beatrice, ‘Who are these? ‘
And she made answer, knowing well each name,
‘AEschylos first, the second Sophokles,
And last (wide stream of tears!) Euripides.’

~~ Oscar Wilde ~~

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One thing I can say about myself is that I’m fairly consistent, once I’ve made up my mind about something…. Below is a religirant, an old one, from more than a year ago, whilst I was still in the grip of the near-poverty level lifestyle with which I was familiar for a couple of years…. It’s all done now, but, as you can see from the following, I haven’t changed my mind about certain basic beliefs….

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From June 27, 2012:

“History does not record anywhere at any time a religion that has any rational basis. Religion is a crutch for people not strong enough to stand up to the unknown without help. But, like dandruff, most people do have a religion and spend time and money on it and seem to derive considerable pleasure from fiddling with it.” — Robert Heinlein, Time Enough for Love (1972)

There are many folks out there who, when reading my material for the first time, might get the impression that I am an atheist, and an anarchist. The stuff I write would tend to give that impression, I have no doubt. But, it really isn’t the case, and just goes to show that not everything is always as it seems….

I’m not an atheist, at least not in a classical sense. I would more accurately be described as agnostic, as I believe strongly in a spiritual component in the universe. But, the very concept of omnipotence, and omniscience, implies that one cannot define God, or whatever entity one considers to be the ultimate authority. A finite mind cannot comprehend an infinite mind; anything we can imagine cannot, by definition, be accurate or complete, as our minds are not infinite in scope.

It could be said that our imagination IS infinite. We can, at the very least, comprehend the concept of infinity, even if we cannot touch it, or see it, or count that high. But, to actually think that what we imagine about God is the same as reality is not only arrogant, it is foolish. Yet a large percentage of the human race not only believes they know what God looks like (ironically, God always looks like the folks who are claiming Him as their deity….), but that they know what He wants. To my way of thinking, this is sheer self-aggrandizement, and unjustifiably arrogant….

I suppose it helps them in dealing with the everyday stresses of life to think that they are special. To think they are beloved of God, and what they do is important to Him. This sense of belonging is important to a lot of folks, due I think, to their own fears about their ability to deal with reality as it exists. It gives them a sense of entitlement, and justifies their actions, no matter how immoral or unethical they may be. It allows them to act upon their impulses without restraint, to lie, to cheat, to steal, all in the name of the Lord. And, if they should happen to feel a tiny shred of guilt about what they are doing to other folks, why, they just confess their sins to Jesus, and all is forgiven!….

Sorry, folks, but I could never buy into the whole scenario, from my earliest days. All of my experience, and all of my reasoning have led me to a different view of reality than what is described by any religion. I have observed the behavior of most people of a religious bent to be, as a rule, hypocritical, cruel, bigoted, racist, and, for the most part, unrelated to any moral or ethical system of any depth. The most religious in society go so far as to threaten violence toward anyone who disagrees with their beliefs, justified by their own self-proclaimed right to spew their hatred on anyone who differs.

I believe in compassion and kindness. I believe in love. I believe in protecting the vulnerable, and helping the less fortunate. I believe in beauty. And, I believe in reality, whatever that may be; it’s purely subjective for the most part. I DON’T believe in the divinity of Jesus, or Buddha, or Lao Tzu, or Mohammad, or any other religious prophet. I don’t believe there is some white haired, bearded old guy sitting on a throne of gold up in the sky somewhere, looking down and getting his pants in a bunch because I didn’t salute his graven image first thing after I got up.

That whole graven image thing, and the idea that God wants, or needs, our worship has always been a thorn in my side. I mean, can’t these zealots understand the irony of worshiping an image of Christ on the cross? Don’t they know that the cross is a graven image? And why would an omnipotent being need MY worship? It makes no sense. None. I cannot imagine of ANY reason for a God to care at all about such petty bullshit; I don’t care to be worshiped, why should He? Having someone act that way toward me makes me uncomfortable, so I can’t see why a God would even want to go there. What purpose does it serve?

Well, one of my computer alarms just went off, and made me realize I was ranting, which I had not started out to do. I think y’all can get the gist of my arguments by this time, and those who are in disagreement with what I’ve written aren’t going to be persuaded away from their long-held delusions by my words, so further soliloquy would be futile.

I’ll just finish by saying this…. until Mankind grows up enough to be able to put aside the crutch of religion, and learns to stand up to reality as it exists, without the delusional imaginary friend to intercede on their behalf with the universe, then our path to extinction will remain clear…. It’s too bad really, because our species shows a lot of promise…. it’s too bad we will never be allowed to explore our limits as an adult species, because we will have killed ourselves off before we ever got out of childhood….
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You’re right, I cheated a bit…. I’m an American, sue me…. I don’t currently have the angst and/or outrage necessary for good ranting, so, I went with the archives again…. It saves time proofing, too, as I’ve already been over the old stuff at least twice before it got posted…. Let’s see what kind of overall damage I’ve done today….

It’s a good thing the universe has a lot of hit points…. I hit back fairly hard today. Be that as it may, I think Reality will probably survive, so I’ll just be on my way, doing my part to shore up the dikes of reason against the tide of ignorance…. See ya….

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

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

Which is Why….


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

gigoid

dozer3