Neutral feedback? Good idea; try it….


“I understand life and the universe. Cats are beyond me.”

~~ Smart Bee, echoing gigoid ~~

Ollie Owl

Ollie Owl

Good morning, ffolkes…..

Shall we Pearl?

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



Image from via Google free images

Is there anyone out there who hasn’t heard of this artist? If so, you’re in for a treat…. ear candy, as it were. Enjoy, ffolkes…. this is another one of humanity’s cultural heritage treasures….


Ray Charles





Dont keep calm

    Apparently, on one of the Friday the 13th days during 2012, I had a good day in my head…. Here are some thoughts from that day, that still have relevance in today’s world…..

From 1/13/2012:

“It has been said that there are two theories of history: conspiracy and blunder. If there is some truth to that, it is surely equally true that blunder seldom receives all the credit due it as an explanation of complex events.” — Michael Scully

I would say that this is probably pretty accurate; after all, it is the winners who get to tell the story, and why would they make themselves look any worse than they already are? I believe that much of mankind’s progress up to now is, in fact, a result of blundering about, breaking the china and scaring the horses, until something serendipitous falls into someone’s lap.

The example most often given regarding inspiration that brings progress is that of Isaac Newton and the apple, which, according to history, fell upon his head unexpectedly, causing him to fall down and begin writing the 3 Laws of Motion. I think it more likely that he was trying to climb up to get the apple, and took a good fall onto his head; he just blamed it on the apple, and since he was the only witness, who can gainsay him?

This points out one of the less attractive, and most problematic of the characteristics of humans, and that is our inability to get beyond our childish feelings of insecurity. The older we get, the less able we become to handle the embarrassment or ridicule that follows a mistake, and the more contortions we will assume to keep others from seeing our Bozoid Tendencies. You see, like the Firesign Theater said, “I think we’re all Bozo’s on this bus!”; we all have the unfortunate ability to perform ridiculously stupid acts at times.

Most folks, though, don’t like to be thought of this way, and will go through almost anything to prevent themselves from looking inept in front of other folks. Me, I wish they’d just learn to laugh at themselves, and everyone else; maybe then they could grow up enough to be able to look directly at the things in society that we need to change, instead of childishly refusing to even look at the situation. Emotional maturity means dealing with whatever happens, without letting emotions control one’s actions, or reactions, and most of mankind doesn’t exhibit anything close to that sort of maturity……

Also from 1/13/2012:

“Thinking, understanding, reasoning, willing, call not these Soul! They are its actions, but they are not its essence.” — Akhenaton? (c. B.C. 1375)

When? Oh, four thousand four hundred eighty-seven years ago… that all? I’ve got acne scars older than that! Well, perhaps not. But I am continually amazed at some of the things I find that were written this long ago. It gives credence to the idea that mankind’s first steps toward modern culture were the result of how our minds work, and our penchant for using our imagination to understand the universe around us. It has been said that the first science was Astronomy, which makes a lot of sense. But, simultaneously, we used Philosophy, and the principles of logic and reason, to apply meaning to what we observed.

Forty-four hundred years is a long time to be working on the same issues, and it seems to me we should be getting somewhere a bit faster than we are. But then I realize that there is another side to human nature, one that is not so moral and ethical as our scientific bent, a side of us in constant competition with our virtues, battling to assume control of society. (You know… that old good vs. evil deal….) That other side is winning, too, mostly because those who disavow virtue have no compunctions against cheating, or lying, or manipulating events to suit their own purposes. Moreover, they don’t hesitate to resort to violence to do so, when they cannot find any simpler method….

I think, as a species, we’ve been at this long enough; let’s make a concerted effort to nullify the negative effects of deliberate ignorance and fear. Perhaps we can even find a way to survive our own nature….. The Universe will get the impression we’re slow learners, if we don’t start to show a bit more progress toward growing out of infancy….

Note from 2015: I’m not sure why, but, the following five star pearl insisted on being included at the end of this section…. I am pretty sure it’s just my reaction to what I said above…..

“Is truth not truth for all?”

~~ Natira ~~

~~ “For the World is Hollow and I have Touched the Sky” ~~


“How do you make sense of such madness? The answer is, you can’t.”

~~ Pablo Guzman ~~


“Do you have the patience to wait till your mud settles and the water is clear?
Can you remain unmoving till the right actions arises by itself?”

~~ Lao Tzu ~~


An ancient buddha said, Mountains are mountains; waters are waters.
These words do not mean mountains are mountains;
they mean mountains are mountains.

~~ Dogen ~~


“How can I lose faith in the justice of life,
when the dreams of those
who sleep upon feathers
are not more beautiful
than the dreams of those
who sleep upon the earth?”

~~ Kahlil Gibran ~~



Accentuated Lessons

Bold statements of calculated intent
Become common rule of the malcontent.
Avarice assumes such attractive wear
Beguiling deception, illusory and fair.

Grasping and pulling with ghostly hands
Legally proper in all the signatory lands.
Seeking and finding each vulnerable soul
Anguish as payment for exacting the toll.

Wraiths of commerce’s invisible dead guards
Still haunt the dreams left in sad empty yards.
While absentee nobles sit in stiffly elegant splendor
Served by sad-faced detainees in abject surrender.

Escape from reality is illusory at best
Often we falter and fail its daily test.
Only when focused on inner strength
Does peace stay with us for any length.

Peace lies within, always…..

~~ gigoid ~~



Dubiousity, Redux

In the virtual world, I call myself gigoid, the dubious, for specific reasons…. Rather than use my own words to delineate/describe those reasons, here are some of them, in the form of pearls, (naturally….), as collected by Smart Bee, just as an exercise…. It turned out to be a nice, eleven-star pearl, all centered around the concept of doubt as a function of wisdom…. It seems I’m not the only person in history to put my faith in doubt, rather than the other way around, so to speak…. There are a lot of big names here, and, I only went through the first half of the collection….

Pay particular heed today, ffolkes; these little bits of shiny stuff are more subtly important, to you, than you may realize…. Oh, and, ALL of this will be on your final Quiz…. Don’t blame me, I didn’t make it up….

Shadow and sunlight are the same;
The vanished gods to me appear;
And one to me are shame and fame.
They reckon ill who leave me out;
When me they fly, I am the wings;
I am the doubter and the doubt,
And I the hymn the Brahmin sings.

~~ Ralph Waldo Emerson, Brahma ~~

“Philosophy, means, first, doubt; and afterwards the consciousness of what knowledge means, the consciousness of uncertainty and of ignorance, the consciousness of limit, shade, degree, possibility. The ordinary man doubts nothing and suspects nothing.” — Henri Frederick Amiel

“A lizard ran out on a rock and looked up, listening no doubt to the sounding of the spheres. And what a dandy fellow! the right toss of a chin for you and swirl of a tail! If men were as much men as lizards are lizards they’d be worth looking at.” — D. H. Lawrence (1928)

“Authority has every reason to fear the skeptic, for authority can rarely survive in the face of doubt.” — Robert Lindner

“Doubt is not a pleasant condition but certainty is an absurd one.” — Voltaire

Modest doubt is call’d
The beacon of the wise, the tent that searches
To the bottom of the worst.

~~ William Shakespeare ~~

~~ Troilus and Cressida — Act ii, Sc. 2 ~~

Doubt is the beginning, not the end, of wisdom. — Smart Bee

“Freedom of speech and freedom of action are meaningless without freedom to think. And there is no freedom of thought without doubt.” — Bergen Evans, The Natural History of Nonsense (1946)

“If you understand, or if you don’t. If you believe, or if you doubt. There is a universal justice and the eyes of truth are always watching.” — Enigma

“Men become civilized, not in proportion to their willingness to believe, but in their readiness to doubt.” — H. L. Mencken

My guard stood hard when abstract threats too noble to neglect
 deceived me into thinking I had something to protect.
 Good and bad I defined these terms, quite clear, no doubt, somehow
 Ah, but I was so much older then;
 I’m younger than that now.

~~ Bob Dylan ~~

Ah, yes, indeed…. I AM younger than that now….. so, there will be more on this subject later…. Ta, then….


Y’all, just like me, are going to say goodbye now…( Goodbye!…), until tomorrow; we will do so with no further inquiry into how this got done…. In fact, y’all may as well just go into complete denial now; it will help later in the day….. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes, provided nobody says the wrong thing….If only we knew what that was….

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


“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch


À bientôt, mon cherí….


Intrusion of the Dubious….

As the brightly colored dreidle spins, mesmerizing, laughter rings out above the noise of the crowded plaza. The sun beat down with heavy indifference, laying a mantle of sticky humidity on the poor, and on the not-so-poor denizens wandering listlessly among the filthy stalls. Occasionally, soldiers from the palace would stride past, looking neither left nor right, in squads of eight; any fewer would be an easy target for the bands of mercenaries purchased as protection by the criminal overlords of the city.

The crowds parted once again, and filled in behind, as a stranger, dressed in strangely colored garments, marched steadily toward the Speaking Stone. He reached the Stone and vaulted to the top; the crowd gathered around, and fell silent. As the sun began to sink behind the minarets to the west, the stranger looked out among the crowd, and spake thus, “Did you believe the lies? Did you doubt my words? If so, the proof of your mistaken choice stands before you. I have returned, and there will be a reckoning!” The crowd, still silent, fell back as the stranger quickly departed the plaza. Neighbor looked at neighbor, with baffled mien, until one shouted out, expressing the mutual confusion, and said “What! What the hell is that supposed to mean?”……

Sorry folks, just had to get that out…..we will now return to our regularly scheduled nonsense…..

Alone!–that worn-out word,
So idly spoken, and so coldly heard;
Yet all that poets sing and grief hath known
Of hopes laid waste, knells in that word ALONE!
— Edward Bulwer-Lytton (1805-1873) — The New Timon, (1846), Part ii

It is interesting sometimes to see how the world works; there is always some piece of it that is stranger than we can imagine. This poem, though not of top notch quality, is nonetheless saved from total obscurity by the power of its plea. What interests me is that this gentleman is the same one who wrote the famous passage from the beginning of one of his books; it begins with “It was a dark and stormy night….” and proceeds to go downhill from there. It is considered by experts to be so bad that there is now a yearly literary contest, with a pretty hefty prize, called the Bulwer-Lytton Award.

The award is bestowed upon the author of the written passage that best exemplifies just how badly people can write. Each year, the winning pieces lend new meaning to Theodore Sturgeon’s Law of Everything, which tells us that “90 percent of science fiction is crap. But, then, 90% of everything is crap.” It’s all just another way for us to laugh at our best source of humor in life, ourselves and our personal struggle with our oh-so human nature…….

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

In the movie, The Lion King, there is a scene wherein the young lion king-to-be is receiving a lesson from his shaman/mentor, the anorexic orangutan. The shaman would ask a question, and when the young lion answered, the shaman would hit him over the head with a stick, and say “Forget about it! It’s in the Past!”, carrying on with that until the point was obvious, to wit: Don’t hang on to baggage you can leave in the past, or you’ll drag it with you into the future.”

This is actually the only scene from the movie that I remember, so I guess my crap detector was on full alert. But this one scene makes the movie worthwhile for me, because this is a lesson that more kids (and adults) in this country need to have drilled into their heads. However, such a subtle concept as this is generally incomprehensible to westerners, who are conditioned from birth to avoid using their minds at all cost….to their eventual regret, and everyone else’s chagrin…..

By the rude bridge that arched the flood,
Their flag to April’s breeze unfurled,
Here once the embattled farmers stood,
And fired the shot heard round the world.
— Ralph Waldo Emerson, Concord Hymn

“Our safety, our liberty depends on preserving the Constitution of the United States as our fathers made it inviolate.  The people of the US are the rightful masters both Congress and the courts – Not to overthrow the Constitution, but to overthrow the men who pervert the Constitution” — Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865)

“I see in the near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety of my country…. Corporations have been enthroned, an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money-power of the country will endeavor to prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until the wealth is aggregated in a few hands and the Republic is destroyed.’ — Former US President Abraham Lincoln, Nov. 21, 1864 — letter to Col. William F. Elkins — printed in “The Lincoln Encyclopedia”, — ed. Archer H. Shaw, Macmillan, 1950, NY

“Our government has kept us in a perpetual state of fear — kept us in a continuous stampede of patriotic fervor — with the cry of grave national emergency… Always there has been some terrible evil to gobble us up if we did not blindly rally behind it by furnishing the exorbitant sums demanded.  Yet, in retrospect, these disasters seem never to have happened, seem never to have been quite real.” — General Douglas MacArthur, 1957

This section of quotes hearkens back to the early days of the Pearls of Virtual Wisdom. The four quotes above, when considered as a continuing evolution of observations of American society, show an increasingly strong sense of impending threat to the freedoms our forefathers attempted to guarantee for us. The threat is getting even stronger as time goes on, and I can only hope that enough folks out there are aware of how close to the edge we are skating, and make a joint effort to pull us all back from danger…..but, then, I AM an optimist by nature…..

Thou wast that all to me, love,
For which my soul did pine–
A green isle in the sea, love,
A fountain and shrine,
All wreathed with fairy fruits and flowers,
And all the flowers were mine.
— Edgar Allan Poe

Poe didn’t live long, but he loved, and lived well, miserable though he was. To love well is to live well; perfect logic trimmed with Occam’s Razor. I have loved, so I can say I have lived well. I still love, and seek more. It is, after all, our most defining emotion. Robert Heinlein, of course, said it the best, as far as I can see, when he said that “Love is the condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own.” That’s a goal worth living for…..

No soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law. — The Constitution of the United States of America Amendment 3, 1791

This is your daily reminder of what is now missing from your life… joke…..

The above posting may seem like insignificant rubbish at first glance, but if you read between the lines, you will be surprised to discover the annals of Burt Bachrach, world peace, Oxford Advanced Readers Dictionary, quantum physics made easy, and an easy-to-use step-by-step walk-through on how to make a time traveling device that actually works. — DISCLAIMER

I can’t do it any better than that; not today. Today, I’ll be lucky if I can see my way clear to tomorrow. Matters at this point are, shall we say, unsettled? Good thing I refuse to be bored; to admit that is to admit I’m tired of what is in my own head. Not gonna happen in this lifetime…..meantime, y’all take care out there…..

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