Lofty goals, impudent desires….

Ffolkes,

“…life is long enough if it is well-spent.”

~~ Erasmus ~~

Magic 004

How to relax….

Hajime…. Today, along with the rest of this week, (and, the rest of the month, the way it is developing), is busy, with events taking place out in the BBR. It will take up most of the day, so, I have worked hard to complete this Pearl, as I am unsure when I’ll be able to get another fresh one done. The good news, for me, is, I finished the discussion/rant on which I’ve spent a week or more. It isn’t quite as planned, but, it’s definitely a feast for the mind, so, it will do. The rest is pretty much a throw-together, with another of my old poems, and an archived pearl of pearls for the last section. Since it all flowed together smoothly, I’ll take it, and be content. So, then, must you…. I mean, that’s what blogging is, right? Right….

All that being said, to our regular lack of defined purpose, I’ll make this intro a short one; they seem to work best for days such as the one in which we currently find ourselves. I shan’t apologize; I shall, however, issue a warning. To make it through this one, you’ll need to put on your thinking caps, if you have one; the following is NOT for the weak-minded, or, anyone who is afraid to challenge their own beliefs. It’s all about doubt, which remains our most relevant tool for finding our way in life…. a statement we’ll defend another time, if necessary. Today, we’re going elsewhere, with gusto….

That’ enough; we/I have a lot to do today. Let’s begin, while we are still fresh….

Shall we Pearl?

There is nothing like death. To it, everything is a metaphor.

~~ Subtle Bee ~~

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“You’re not ready for what I think.”

~~ Fox Mulder ~~

Plato-Aristotle

“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) ~~

The above passage from Mr. Heinlein happens to be one of my favorites, in all I have read, in more than 60 years of pursuing the truth in books. In that sixty years, I’ve read an average of a book every other day; I no longer claim one per day, though I managed that average for the first 45 years or so; I’ve slowed some, trading quality for quantity in these latter years. In all that time, I have found this to be the most tactful, sardonic, and accurate statement summarizing my own thoughts, and my own opinion on the matter of religion.

I know such a statement meets with knitted brow, (I can hear the needles clacking together…), showing obvious disapproval from the majority of humankind; I noticed that at age four, the first time I asked my Sunday School teacher to explain the nonsense I was hearing there. I have noted no lesser degree of disbelief from almost everyone in the ensuing years, though not so frequently as if I had not learned to avoid discussions of religion, at least without some observable indications of an open mind. Since turning 60, or so, I’ve given up caring if people get offended, as I simply no longer care what they think about it, and am prepared to discuss it with anyone who cares to risk it.

Moreover, I’m not alone in my distrust of religions, especially the one in which I was made the subject of attempted indoctrination, almost from birth. Quite a number of the men who led the struggle to formulate this country, whom we were raised to call our “Founding Fathers”, also shared this mistrust. For example, here are some of their thoughts on the matter, followed by a closing thought from a modern poet….

“But a short time elapsed after the death
of the great reformer of the Jewish religion,
before his principles were departed
from by those who professed to be his special servants,
and perverted into an engine for enslaving mankind,
and aggrandizing t heir oppressors in Church and State.”

~~ Thomas Jefferson, [letter?] To S. Kercheval, 1810 ~~

*******

“What is it the Bible teaches us? – rapine, cruelty, and murder.
What is it the Testament teaches us?
– to believe that the Almighty committed debauchery
with a woman engaged to be married,
and the belief of this debauchery is called faith.”

~~ Thomas Paine — The Age of Reason ~~

*******

“All national institutions of churches, whether Jewish, Christian, or Turkish,
appear to me no other than human inventions,
set up to terrify and enslave mankind, and monopolize power and profit.”

~~ Thomas Paine ~~

*******

“The divinity of Jesus is made a convenient cover for absurdity.
Nowhere in the Gospels do we find a precept
for Creeds, Confessions, Oaths, Doctrines,
and whole carloads of other foolish trumpery
that we find in Christianity.”

~~ John Adams ~~

*******

“…this would be the best of all possible worlds,
if there were no religion in it.”

~~ John Adams, Letter to Thomas Jefferson, 1816 ~~

*******

For those who believe in God, most of the big questions are answered.
But for those of us who can’t readily accept the God formula,
the big answers don’t remain stone-written.
We adjust to new conditions and discoveries.
We are pliable.
Love need not be a command or faith a dictum.
I am my own God.
We are here to unlearn the teachings
of the church, state, and our educational system.
We are here to drink beer.
We are here to kill war.
We are here to laugh at the odds
and live our lives so well that Death will tremble to take us.”

~~ Charles Bukowski ~~

Let’s finish this part…. For just a moment, wrap your head around the following statement, without attaching any emotional or even intellectual importance to whether it is true, or, not: “There is no God, or gods. No Allah, no Jehovah/Yahweh, no Jesus, no Krishna, nor any supernatural force which created/controls the universe.”

Got that idea? Is it comprehensible, simply as a statement of alternative possibility? I contend this statement is the Truth of Reality; in fact, I contend there is no rational reason to suspect otherwise.

Further, the belief there is such an entity has caused more harm to our species than any other single idea. It has caused people to be divided from each other, over something that merely plays upon their fears of the unknown to manipulate them into serving purposes that have no benefit for them, beyond an ignoble death, at the hands of another person suffering from the same manipulation, by another name.

Even worse, this ‘belief’ predisposes humans to then transfer their ‘belief’ to other ideas that are not in their self-interest, such as believing one is better, or worse than any other human, simply because of where they were born, or the amount of pigment in their skin, or that money implies worth. Humans are not naturally hierarchal; we all die, so what is to make one ‘better’ than another? Yet we find it easy to believe in such hierarchal fantasies, to the point of offering up our lives for an idea we never thought ourselves, but, had planted in our head before we knew enough to be able to tell for ourselves….

You see, the idea that humans NEED a government to solve their issues between each other is yet another silly notion, not supported by reality. The concept of money as a part of reality necessary to our success is also a false idea; there is nothing hierarchal about Nature, of which money is NOT a part. Yet, because humans are easily convinced, by their training to believe ideas are real, people set themselves up to fail, to be manipulated to expend their efforts and their attention on matters which serve no useful (to them) purpose….

“Patriotism is the willingness to kill and be killed for trivial reasons.”

~~ Bertrand Russell ~~

*******

“Some writers have so confounded society with government,
as to leave little or no distinction between them;
whereas they are not only different, but have different origins.
Society is produced by our wants,
and government by our wickedness;
the former promotes our happiness *positively*,
by uniting our affections,
the latter *negatively*, by restraining our vices.
The one encourages intercourse,
the other creates distinctions.
The first is a patron, the last is a punisher.
Society in every state is a blessing,
but government even in its best state is but a necessary evil;
in its worst state an intolerable one….”

~~ Thomas Paine, opening lines of _Common Sense_ 1776 ~

~~ *asterisks denote Paine’s use of italics* ~~

*******

“Money made a vow to itself, that no one who didn’t love it, would ever have it.”

Irish Proverb

As can be easily seen, merely by reading the history of our species, this trio of delusions, i.e., religion, government, and money, has caused more strife, conflict, and needless death, than any other single idea, for all the time since we began to gather in cities. It has been shown that humans lose their ability to function as a truly human animal when there are more than 200 or so sets of eyes; as we gather in towns, & cities, this number grows beyond our personal need for community, and the rules of engagement between people begin to fray, and those who have the need to control others, due to their own inner fears & perversions of spirit, begin manipulating the weak minded, and we see the development of rules and hierarchies to manipulate people into losing their own self-control of what serves their interests, in the mistaken belief it is necessary, when, in truth, what is necessary is increased personal responsibility, and self-reliance.

“The races of the Galaxy look towards mankind as the essential lunatic element.”

~~ Terry Pratchett, “Strata”, pg. 60 ~~

In sixty years of observing and studying human history, and humanity itself, both individually, and, as a species, I’ve come to two conclusions. First, our most compelling talent, as proven by any historical tome anyone has written, or read, is the ability to think of endless, inventive ways to kill each other, or anything else we come across in our wandering about the face of the earth. Second, almost everything we have invented, as weapons, is simply a more complicated method of throwing rocks, both sharp, and dull; most everything we have created as tools & systems/skills for use as non-weapons, is a response to this talent, in that it is designed to keep ourselves, in one way or another, from getting killed, mostly by each other….

Both sides of this talent, of course, stem from our imagination, which, in the most pure analysis, has been shown to be little more than an anomaly of our consciousness; neither can be quantified, or touched, or in any way seen to be a part of the reality we perceive through our physical senses. In short, it may be, as some speculate, merely a local phenomenon, in this small corner of the universe we perceive elsewhere, all around us, but too far to reach physically. This paradoxical sense, I think, is what gives most humans the tendency to ‘imagine’ themselves to be more than they actually are, denying completely the simple truth of reality as it exists, to assume that reality is what we imagine it to be. In short, we are able to deny our own nature….

Perhaps this is why so many are willing to believe in the lies and untruths on which our entire culture has been based for so long. In truth, we may never know; I probably won’t; if I haven’t been able to figure it out by now, I don’t think I have enough time left on this particular plane of existence to do so. Perhaps, after I have gone on to the next great adventure, the answers will be made clear; then again, anything, at all, can be no more than speculation, thus, exercising again that imagination… I’ve figured out enough to not believe anything that comes from that source; it tends to be less than real, at least as often as it is more so….

Enough, he cried, enough…. ‘Tis a feast, no more is needed.

********************************

playing-for-change

Finishing the rant/discussion above took up all the spare time I had, so, we go with default, as is our wont. This is the original video, which started the whole idea of the organization. All of it is great music, by street musicians, along with the occasional music star to add their talent to the mix. I hope you enjoy it, and take the time to support the organization, which spreads love, and joy, and human kindness in all its branches, now located around the world at their music schools… Check our their website, it’s worth the time….

*************************************

Playing For Change

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Comedy_Tragedy

In case it isn’t clear, this poem, written over four years ago, is a rather complex version of the rant/discussion above, though, at the time, I didn’t know that…. *grin*…. I hope you enjoy it anyway….

Fatal Supplication

But what becomes of our deepest dangerous dreams?
Does fantasy rescue any part of life’s imperiled favor?
Reality becomes but silvery pairs of mismatched teams,
Dining with affable elegance, such diffident waste to savor.

Who decides what sorrows to carry bravely to term?
Will fragrant moments of sanity make hasty manifestation?
Only Time’s patient mutability sends messages so firm,
Yet salient impersonal vexation lends credence to ripe imagination.

Can folly bring out sadness and rampant visions of beauty?
What kindness can be found in distant open relations?
With countless faces the dead disturb with dire impunity,
From separate caches of wisdom come simple stylish privations.

Shall shallow emotion serve to provide such explanations?
When does avaricious intensity assume primary focus?
Plain answers slide softly through with multiple mitigations,
While conceptually indignant concepts engage a fatally personal locus.

~~ gigoid ~~

9/20/2012

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pearls_3

I’m in a bit of a hurry, for reasons I explained above, so, we’re filling in the final section with a group of pearls from an archived Pearl, which, oddly enough, fits right in with today’s post…. Go figure, eh? At any rate, it’s a good way to finish this off with some aplomb, if not complete dignity…. Enjoy!….

From 9/7/2012:

Having just spent three hours (okay, I exaggerated…. only two….) searching in vain for a pearl to finish with, I became incensed with frustration, and rather than scare my new neighbors with a verbal outburst, I calmly set a parameter, and collected the following pearls on one subject, to wit: human nature…. As far as I can tell, all of them rate a solid 10 on the truth scale….. As always, just follow the bouncing thought as it explores your own inner self….

“The world always makes the assumption that the exposure of an error is identical with the discovery of truth–that the error and truth are simply opposite. They are nothing of the sort. What the world turns to, when it is cured on one error, is usually simply another error, and maybe one worse than the first one.” — H. L. Mencken

“The ultimate evil is the weakness, cowardice, that is one of the constituents of so much human nature. When, rarely, unalloyed nobility does occur, its chances of prevailing are slim. Yet it exists, and its mere existence is reason enough for not wiping the name of mankind off the slate.” — John Simon

“We are all terrible little creatures.” — Martin Amis

“The tragedy and the magnificence of Homo sapiens together rise from the same smoky truth that we alone among the animal species refuse to acknowledge natural law.” — Robert Ardrey, _The Social Contract_

“Man, were he not corrupted by Governments, is naturally the friend of Man, and that human nature is not of itself vicious.” — Thomas Paine

“I think we’re all Bozos on this Bus!” — Firesign Theater

Now I feel better….. and I hope you do, as well….

********************************

Okay!…. That went well, for a change. This is one I put a lot into; in a certain sense, it might be considered an iconic Pearl, a representative of all Pearls, with an example of all of what I do. Of course, I don’t see it addressing any of the ‘why’ I do it, but, hey, we can’t have everything. At least, not all at once; that’s a bit much to expect…. At this point, you may expect your day to continue, and, in that, you’d be right. You see, this one is at an end; at least, as far as I can make it so. Since I can feel it slipping away from me, I’ll just say this…. See ya, ffolkes. I’ll be back, in a day, or possibly two, depending on how efficiently I can deal with the demands upon me set by what is happening out in the Big Blue Room. Should be an interesting week; lets get started on it, ‘kay? ‘Kay! Be cool, be strange, be alert, and most of all, keep those thinking caps close at hand….

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

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

Which is Why….

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

gigoid, the dubious

The *only* duly authorized Computer Curmudgeon.

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

Featured Image -- 12021

À bientôt, mon cherí….

Set your phasers on Twinkle, troops….

Ffolkes,

Take me disappearing through the smoke rings of my mind
down the foggy ruins of time
far past the frozen leaves
the haunted frightened trees
out to the windy beach
far from the twisted reach of crazy sorrow.

Ah, to dance beneath the diamond sky with one hand waving free
silhouetted by the sea
circled by the circus sands
with all memory and fate
driven deep beneath the waves
let me forget about today until tomorrow.

~~ Bob Dylan ~~

kepler-exoplanet-travel-poster-relax

    The poster you see above this line is from NASA. Yep. If you click on the picture, you’ll see a larger version, which will allow you to read the small print beneath the picture. When I feel phantasmagorical (Specifically, in my case, the state of wishing for a fantasy world, wherein the human race DOESN’T become extinct….), I look at the poster, and the two others they have displayed over at the NASA web site, and dream of traveling to far-away planets…. It’s been happening a lot of late, as, here on Earth, life is becoming somewhat tenuous in nature, with a great deal of uncertainty as to how much longer our human presence will be tolerated by our abused home’s landlord, whomever that may be….

But, the intro is not the place to get into an issue of such scope…. Just click on the picture, and, if you wish, go download a copy yourself (or, download it right from the page where you see it…), and join me on the next flight to Kepler 16b…. I hear the interstellar transport ships are becoming quite luxurious, just like the old time cruise ships back on Earth, before the apocalypse….

Alright, I’m back, I think, though I don’t really want to be…. But, it’s just like that hive of bees there in my head, you know? There they are…. and, here I am….. SIGH….

Sometimes, I am more in tune with the future than I know. But, that’s a story for another time. Yesterday, the rant I wrote left me, for a while, in the dumps regarding any future for the human race…. Being a human, I was able to forget my/our doom, and get on with living, just as, eventually, I’ll get on with this Pearl. In fact, perhaps, given the fragility of my mood this recent past, we should do that now, before the risk of any unpleasantness becomes greater than my desire to avoid any such ungentlemanly behavior…. I do TRY….

Thus, if I could persuade y’all to place whatever adult beverages you chose for today’s dive, into the holders provided in your seat armrest, buckle up tight, and brace yourselves, we can be on our way. The sign re: no phone usage aboard this craft is there for a reason; please don’t make or take any calls, or we could drop from the sky like a stone…. But, no worries, the ink on the pilot’s license is fully dry; I checked…. Trust me….

Shall we Pearl?

“A doctrine insulates the devout not only against the realities around them but also against their own selves. The fanatical believer is not conscious of his envy, malice, pettiness and dishonesty. There is a wall of words between his consciousness and his real self.” — Eric Hoffer

(Boy, ain’t it the TRUTH! Have you listened lately to FOX news? Or, for that matter, to ANYTHING on TV, or issued as a public proclamation of almost any kind? I can’t put my finger on exactly why, but, for sure and for certain, all reason in the world has gone missing, stranding us here on the train to madness, without a return ticket….)

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One advantage of the internet over previous times, in at least one respect, is this: if one should wish, or need, some GOOD news, it’s a bit easier to find…. For example: I found this in a link to the ABC network channel web site you see below, , referred by an article on Rolling Stone’s web site I received in a daily email summary…. Believe me, this one makes it hard to find any reason to feel bad, if only for a moment or two….

Meet Eclipse, the dog who figured out how to ride the bus all by herself

http://abc13.com/video/embed/?pid=472964

~~~~~~~~~

Here is another video, along the same lines, found at the same web site, abc13.com….

British bulldog hates bottle of water


bulldog pup

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I am currently so involved with affairs in the Big Blue Room, there is little room in my head to spare for collecting angst, at least while awake…. No telling what my unconscious mind throws out there while I’m sawing logs, as far as I do so…. One of the referrals to the archives that Word Press makes each day, as one of the suggested Pearls at the bottom of the post, held the following religirant, one of my better treatises on the subject of humanity’s oldest scam…. Enjoy, please, or, at least, don’t take it personally….

From 9/7/2012:

“Sin lies only in hurting other people unnecessarily. All other “sins” are invented nonsense. (Hurting yourself is NOT a sin–just stupid.)” — Lazarus Long, from Robert A. Heinlein’s “Time Enough For Love”

It would be foolish to try to claim that there is NOT a part of me that wishes there was a God, as described by most of the Christian sects, or the Islamic, or Jewish, or any other of the major and/or minor religions in the history of Man. Who wouldn’t want to have all the responsibility for thinking, or for acting within reason, taken out of their hands? It would be wonderful, but as it’s pretty unlikely, to all appearances, that part of me will have to remain unfulfilled….. I’d rather adopt and set the above moral standard as my own, as I happen to agree with it wholeheartedly. It forms the root, the base, the touchstone of all of my morality, the basic raison d’etre for my every decision of whether or not to act, and how to react, from an ethical standpoint of my own choice, without thinking about whether or not it is according to dogma.

I first came across this particular quote from Lazarus when I was about 15 or 16 years old, right when I was taking classes at my parent’s church to fulfill the requirements for admission as an official, saved member of the church (Presbyterian, if it matters….), and wondering how I was going to break it to all of them that I couldn’t do it…. It was a hard decision, but, since the teachers couldn’t answer my questions about Bible incidents that puzzled me (not part of what we studied, but from different chapters I had read…), I stopped attending any services, because I didn’t want to be a hypocrite…. I could even rationalize my decision, as having been made out of concern for the safety of my family and friends, since now the church could conceivably fall down on them if they were with me when I came in…..

“Anybody who wants religion is welcome to it, as far as I’m concerned — I support your right to enjoy it.  However, I would appreciate it if you exhibited more respect for the rights of those people who do not wish to share your dogma, rapture or necrodestination.” — Frank Zappa, “The Real Frank Zappa Book”

I also happen to agree with Frank on this one. What I do believe about religion, and the concept of God, or god, or Dog, is my own business, and begins with not pressing it on others, unless they ask; in such cases I will discuss the subject superficially, without expressing any preferences one way or another….. Unless, of course, they begin to proselytize. In THOSE cases, I will use every bit of shock value pop psychology I know of to lead them down some primrose path, messing with their heads until I get bored with them…. That usually doesn’t take long; they’re generally fairly uninteresting people. I tend to prefer people who have a bit of salt to their personality, just a touch of insanity somewhere in their blood…. Such ffolkes are much more fun to be around than folks who spend their time feeling bad about wanting to feel good….. and they annoy me far less often, as a rule…..

If God is omnipotent, why does he need my money? — Smart Bee

“The human condition is such that pain and effort are not just symptoms which can be removed without changing life itself; they are rather the modes in which life itself, together with the necessity to which it is bound, makes itself felt. For mortals, the ‘easy life of the gods’ would be a lifeless life.” — Hannah Arendt

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In the same post with the rant in the section immediately above, I also found this poem, which I believe I may have not used since…. I don’t remember, and I’m certainly not going to go look…. It will do for today, certainly…. I hope you enjoy it….

Vague Glimpses of a Rainbow

All the sad notions of propriety had fled,
Screaming their anger for pausing in song,
Until late came the rabid fog, colored in red,
As serenity cried, unafraid to live so strong.

Fallow fields in faithful patience set free,
Dragged from birth, by their own nature cast
Saving each moment against fear yet to be,
Carved into silence, by ignorance held fast.

Historical forces plod slowly ’tis often said
Anxieties streaming stiffly, one epoch to the next.
Cultural mania stands nonchalant in its stead
No sadder epitaph has such bittersweet context.

Patterned bags of forgotten virtue lie in wait
Blessed by reminders whose souls value affinity
Frozen webs surround the fields in gravid state
Grasping passionately within obvious opportunity.

Passage to future realities isn’t guaranteed
Small favors for deities was left off the menu
No roses, nor manna, nor gallant aerial steed
Left traces of fatal, yet originally gracious venue.

~~ gigoid ~~


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SIGH…. After almost an hour, the following pearl is the best I could coax out of SB…. Look at this….

“Anaximander says that men were first produced in fishes, and when they were grown up and able to help themselves were thrown up, and so lived upon the land.” — Plutarch (46-120 AD) — Symposiacs, Book viii, Question viii

?!?!?!?!  In the modern vernacular, WTF!

That, I have to say, is downright scary, it’s so…. weird. It’s probably deeper than it seems; much of what Plutarch said comes out that way. But, I think, with this one serving as the best we can find, it would be well to go back to the archives again, and call it a day…. Why, look! It seems the same Pearl I posted way back when, the same one wherein we found today’s rant, and poem, also had a very fine closing pearl, so…. It’s almost like Fate, isn’t it?…. Planning? No way….

Also from 9/7/2012:

Having just spent three hours (okay, I exaggerated…. only two….) searching in vain for a pearl with which to finish, I became incensed with frustration, and rather than scare my new neighbors with a verbal outburst, I calmly set a parameter, and collected the following pearls on one subject, to wit: human nature…. As far as I can tell, all of them rate a solid 10 on the truth scale….. As always, just follow the bouncing thought as it explores your own inner self….

“The world always makes the assumption that the exposure of an error is identical with the discovery of truth–that the error and truth are simply opposite.  They are nothing of the sort.  What the world turns to, when it is cured on one error, is usually simply another error, and maybe one worse than the first one.” — H. L. Mencken

“The ultimate evil is the weakness, cowardice, that is one of the constituents of so much human nature.  When, rarely, unalloyed nobility does occur, its chances of prevailing are slim.  Yet it exists, and its mere existence is reason enough for not wiping the name of mankind off the slate.” — John Simon

“We are all terrible little creatures.” — Martin Amis

“The tragedy and the magnificence of Homo sapiens together rise from the same smoky truth that we alone among the animal species refuse to acknowledge natural law.” — Robert Ardrey, _The Social Contract_

“Man, were he not corrupted by Governments, is naturally the friend of Man, and that human nature is not of itself vicious.” — Thomas Paine

“I think we’re all Bozos on this Bus!” — Firesign Theater

Now I feel better….. and, you do, as well….

Note from 2015:

Okay, I’ll confess. I also used a bit of hyperbole for THIS pearl…. I did find TWO pearls before giving up, but, when you see this one, you’ll realize why I went back to the past, rather than staying in the future, or the present, or whenever the hell we are now…. It’s gotten a bit confusing in here today…. SIGH…. Here, see what I mean? This is what SB gave me before I gave up…. It’s very poignant, for some of us, but, very, very naughty, in some respects, in a way that isn’t quite, well, healthy… Oh, hell, you’ll see….

“You are not permitted to kill a woman who has wronged you, but nothing forbids you to reflect that she is growing older every minute.  You are avenged fourteen hundred and forty times a day.” — Ambrose Bierce “The Devil’s Dictionary”

See? True enough, but, a bit cruel, thus making it hard to appreciate the humor, or the irony, without a touch of guilt… Oh well, at least I’m done now….

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And, thank God for that! Wait…. Can they arrest me for saying that? In the same post as a religirant? Hmm…. Maybe I should take it back….. Nah. That would be like, hypocrisy, man…. If I don’t believe it, why should I worry about blasphemy? Blasphemy, by definition, has no basis in reality, so, nobody can, in reality, punish me for saying it….

Well, that’s logical anyway, but, since most of the proponents of those who follow such beliefs tend to react so violently when someone doesn’t believe the same way, I think I’ll put on my Kevlar vest for a while…. Better safe than sorry, right?…. Right….

On that cheerful note, I bid thee adieu for another day. Provided none of those I’ve insulted today find me before then, I’ll see y’all tomorrow…. If they do, it’s possible I could be involved in a bit of a firefight; don’t worry about me, though, I recently upgraded my weaponry, and am now capable of withstanding an entire military platoon, as long as they are not equipped with anything more dangerous than, oh, say, a tank….

I could handle a tank, or two…. If they call for air support, I could have to retreat to my hidden compound, but, other than that, it shouldn’t be a problem…. When the Ground-To-Air SAM’s I ordered arrive next week, I’ll be all set to deal with any sort of conflict on my territory.

Okay, all of the rental time for our fantasies has now expired; it’s all been put returned to the vendor, and we may take our leave…. (Don’t tell the vendor, but, I kept the bazookas….) Again, ffolkes, I bid thee a fond farewell, until tomorrow…. Maybe I’ll find a touch of sobriety by then…. you never can tell, can you?….

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

Kowabunga!


À bientôt, mon cherí….

Just as well; this one is too blue….

Ffolkes,

“It is not the possessions but the desires of mankind which require to be equalized.”

~~ Aristotle ~~

August 14 2014 008

    I apologize to anyone who got fooled into watching yesterday’s video choice…. I had not watched “Plan 9 From Outer Space” for many years, having apparently blocked out of my mind anything about the plot or quality; I watched it yesterday for a while, but, lasted only up to 15:45, (when the third of Vampira’s victims is found by the police), before having to stop the video to prevent damaging the computer…. I was frighteningly close to tossing it through the window when I caught myself…

I promise, from now on, I’ll pre-screen any movies like that one… Aye, it’s a cult classic of the genre (Ed Wood, Jr. films, and their ilk…), noted for its campy nature, and lower than B- or, even C-movie rating. I guess in this case, campy translates into crappy…. Oh well, I saw some others on the page where I found it that looked like they would at least have a slightly larger FX budget, with a flying saucer that doesn’t wobble as it moves forward, due to being suspended by only one string, as it gets dragged across  the camera’s eye, rushing uncertainly in front of the (obviously) poorly drawn background, by some guy who apparently has a limp, walking out of sight behind the screen…. SIGH…. I won’t even mention the acting, because nobody in the movie could be accused of that….

Sometimes, my paragraphs get a bit long, and I can’t cut them down, because, as with the one just above this one, it has a typical, (for me), run-on sentence of massive proportion… The one you see here is almost worthy of the Bulwer-Lytton contest held each year, to find the worst opening line for a story…. The four lines above are pretty bad, all in all, but, I’ve seen some amazingly putrid paragraphs take the prize, so it isn’t what I would call a prize-winning effort…. I think at least eight or ten lines are required to catch the judges eyes, all much like that one above, just plain boring and repetitive, until one considers how wonderfully awful it is….

Oh well, it’s fun, but, my purpose here is to teach myself to write better, not worse. I can cough up a run-on sentence any old time; making a compellingly charming one is much more of a challenge, you may be sure. Today, I’m not sure if I’ll be able to come up with either type, that is, not until I can figure out how to get us out of the intro…. I seem to have written myself into a corner again, with no apparent exit…. Oh well, that’s alright. I’ll just break out a bit of the ruthlessness I have left over from a few days ago, and rip us out…. right here, and right now….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“Although war is cruel and brutal, it is also dangerous and stupid.” — Yakko Warner

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I believe I’ve already stated my preference for Eric Clapton’s music, so, I won’t bother to gush any more today. I’ll just say this: this band is considered by more than a few rock historians to be the best group that ever got together & put out an album…. We are fortunate in that Derek and the Dominos put out a couple, or three (I forget), so we have a good legacy of their talented time together…. This album is the best of what they did, with what many consider the best R&R song ever made, in Layla…. Abondanza, ffolkes…..

Layla — Derek and The Dominos (Full Album)

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“It is always best to start at the beginning.” — Smart Bee

Sometimes, Smart Bee comes up with stuff that’s hard to argue with…. Since, in this case, I’m aware of this, I’ll just let it go, and get on with what I have planned for here…. In putting together the pearl, and pearls, for section five, I got a bit carried away with comments, which, while not unusual, did cause that section to grow beyond all reason, into what could be considered a rant…. So, since the news seems to be quiet right now, waiting for the other shoe to drop, I suppose, I will NOT rant here….

Instead, here is a nice, fresh, old-school, seven-star pearl, a bit eclectic, but, not bad…. It will do for today’s effort, which is a bit fractured, anyway, as I try to work new protocols into my day, to deal with my newest annoying physical issue…. This one turned out a little twisted, so, be careful on the turns, okay?….

“Quickly, bring me a beaker of wine, so that I may wet my mind and say something clever.” — Aristophanes

“Anatidaephobia:  The fear that somewhere, somehow, a duck is watching you.” — Smart Bee

“The tragedy and the magnificence of Homo sapiens together rise from the same smoky truth that we alone among the animal species refuse to acknowledge natural law.” — Robert Ardrey, _The Social Contract_

“Approximately 80% of our air pollution stems from hydrocarbons released by vegetation, so let’s not go overboard in setting and enforcing tough emissions standards from man-made sources.” — Ronald W. Reagan, quoted in “Sierra”, 10 September 1980

“Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects.” — Will Rogers

“Democritus said, words are but the shadows of actions.” — Plutarch (46-120 AD) — Of the Training of Children

“Ever stop to think and then forget to start again?” — Steven Wright

Hmm…. At this point, I think it would be best if I didn’t comment any further…. Why don’t we go read a poem?…. Good idea…..

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I have found the site named Poemhunter.com to be an excellent web site; it has everything a poet, or one who merely appreciates poetry, could ask for. One of those features is a listing of the top 500 poems of all time, as voted by their readers…. When I want to include a good one from a classic author, I go straight to the list, where I find poems such as this one from Wordsworth, which, for some reason, has always been one of my favorites…. It might be because he describes a process familiar to us all…. well, familiar to all of us who possess an imagination, anyway…. Enjoy!….

Daffodils

I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o’er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.

Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the milky way,
They stretched in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.

The waves beside them danced; but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:
A poet could not but be gay,
In such a jocund company:
I gazed–and gazed–but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought:

For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.

~~ William Wordsworth ~~


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So, if SB cooperates, the following old-school pearl will be the relative equivalent of a rant; the given parameters I set were to pick pearls which demonstrated the modern American politician’s way of looking at the world, and life, or, in some way, indicates how the average American has been corrupted, to believe in standards and issues which are completely false, or in some way are designed only to keep them distracted, unaware of exactly what their leaders are doing….(I seem to be practicing for the next Bulwer-Lytton test….)

By the end of it, you’ll get the picture…. which is why the pearl would be rantable, or, at minimum, usable IN a rant, if utilized in that respect…. You’ll see, no worries, mates… Oh, just as a helpful reminder…. any insulting statements, if unclear, you may assume the insulter is referring to a politician…. because they most likely were my target….

“Bend the facts to fit the conclusion. It’s easier that way.” — Smart Bee

“He was as great as a man can be without morality.” — Alexis de Tocqueville

(See? Both of these are perfectly ascribable to ANY US president of the last 30 years, since Carter’s administration…. Hell, over the last 60 years, I know of only two presidents who displayed ANY sort of integrity while in office, one of whom was Jimmy Carter…. Of the rest, only Kennedy showed any concern for the common man, and Jack only did so because that was his gig; it’s how he fooled the public, by seeming to be on their side, and, acting as if he were, in many ways…. But, then one must also consider his misogyny (just couldn’t keep his hands off women other than Jackie….), and his overall lifetime membership in the BRC, as one of the richest men in America…. and, he’s the one who sealed the deal in Vietnam, selling it to the public with all his charm….)

(Okay, it has to be said…. the current prez, Barry the Obama, has, as far as I can see, hit about 30/70 on the moral/evil scale while in office; prior to his election as prez, I had NEVER HEARD OF HIM AT ALL, a fact which tends to make me think the Dems were sort of hiding him in plain sight, waiting for the right moment to throw him up into the spotlight, a tactic which worked beyond all their dreams of success… Any who, he’s done okay on healthcare, and economic issues, which is why I generously gave him the 30….)

(I think, though, his actions there were simply designed to get the common man to trust him, as well as to distract him, by highlighting this issue, along with gun control issues, which come up every time someone gets shot, it seems…. But, in terms of supporting the bankers, nobody has ever given them so much money as Obama, with his “bailouts” which, as a reward, the bankers used to allow the economy to settle down, so he would look good….)

)Thus, he has been able to reward the bankers in turn, by keeping us in a constant state of war, spending millions upon billions of dollars on armaments and military actions, none of which is ever debated in public, or declared as a war by Congress…. and, that doesn’t even mention the whole illegal spying issue, and the complete lie of “transparency” he promised during the run-up to the election…. )

(I’m ranting, aren’t I?….. Oops…. Oh well, back to the pearls….)

“… if the democratic nations fail, their failure must be partly attributed to the faulty strategy of idealists who have too many illusions when they face realists who have too little conscience.” — Reinhold Niebuhr

“I’m not happy until I’ve violated somebody’s civil rights and then put them in jail. … That ruins their day … but it makes mine.” — Christopher Commission report of LAPD car-to-car computer message, 7/91

“As a candidate for national elective office the most dangerous thing you can do is say something during the campaign that the people might remember.” — Eugene McCarthy

“I’ve heard enough of your twaddle, Ringleader. We’ll settle this the American way — with our fists!” — Mighty Mouse, “The New Adventures of Mighty Mouse”

(I’m surprised he didn’t say “bombs”….)

“We need excellence in public education and if the teachers can’t do it, we’ll send in a couple of policemen.” — Frank Rizzo, Philadelphia Bulletin, Oct 19, 1973

“Our “neoconservatives” are neither new nor conservative, but old as Babylon and evil as Hell.” — Edward Abbey

“Power corrupts. Absolute power is kind of neat.” — John Lehman, Secretary of the Navy 1981-1987

I like the quotes from the living and dead talking heads, such as the last one…. They tend to show how the speakers really feel and believe, thus giving us the clearest view of their intransigently evil natures….

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Okay, so, it almost got out of hand, but, I managed to wrestle it back into the restraining device, though not without some pissing and moaning…. Regardless, it’s done, as far as I can get it done, so, it will, by definition, be good enough…. In point of fact, though, it’s a bit of an odd duck, so, perhaps it would be best if I slip out this side door here, before the authorities arrive…. You can tell them I said hello, okay? Thanks….. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes, if they don’t catch me….

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, the dubious

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

Kowabunga!


À bientôt, mon cherí….

 

Reasonably moderated bed springs – free to good home…

Ffolkes,

My apologies to anyone who has been commenting on my last few Pearls, and has not received a reply. I am only able to hook up to the Net once a day, usually around 11:00 or noonish, so I’ve been limited to getting the Pearls posted, and taking care of necessary business, such as email. Even my shared computing tasking program is annoyed with me, as it wants to connect to the Net several times a day to get new work. Such is life, at least until I can figure out how to get ISP service at my new apartment….. SIGH……

I also miss getting to read the blogs I follow…. I’ve been getting to a few a day, but only four or five of them, and I’m sure everyone thinks I’ve died or something…. Perhaps not, but I feel like I’m in limbo, for sure….. ah well, I must counsel myself to be patient. If I can wait on Social Security without biting anyone, I can do this, too…..

I should probably stop writing this intro now, and get on with the day’s dive….. so I will.  Shall we Pearl?…..
__________________________________

“Sin lies only in hurting other people unnecessarily. All other “sins” are invented nonsense. (Hurting yourself is NOT a sin–just stupid.)” — Lazarus Long, from Robert A. Heinlein’s “Time Enough For Love”

It would be foolish to try to claim that there is NOT a part of me that wishes there was a God as described by most of the Christian sects, or the Islamic, or Jewish, or any other of the major and/or minor religions in the history of Man. Who wouldn’t want to have all the responsibility for thinking, or for acting within reason, taken out of their hands? It would be wonderful, but as it’s pretty unlikely, to all appearances, that part of me will have to remain unfulfilled….. I’d rather adopt and set the above moral standard as my own, as I happen to agree with it wholeheartedly. It forms the root, the base, the touchstone of all of my morality, the basic raison d’etre for my every decision of whether or not to act, and how to react, from an ethical standpoint of my own choice, without thinking about whether or not it is according to dogma.

I first came across Lazarus Long and his irreverent take on life when I was about 15 or 16 years old, right when I was taking classes at my parent’s church to fulfill the requirements for admission as an official, saved member of the church (Presbyterian, if it matters….), and wondering how I was going to break it to all of them that I couldn’t do it…. It was a hard decision, but, since the teachers couldn’t answer my questions about Bible incidents that puzzled me (not part of what we studied, but from different chapters I had read…), I stopped attending any services, because I didn’t want to be a hypocrite…. I could even rationalize my decision, as having been made out of concern for the safety of my family and friends, since now the church could conceivably fall down on them if they were with me when I came in…..

“Anybody who wants religion is welcome to it, as far as I’m concerned — I support your right to enjoy it.  However, I would appreciate it if you exhibited more respect for the rights of those people who do not wish to share your dogma, rapture or necrodestination.” — Frank Zappa, “The Real Frank Zappa Book”

I also happen to agree with Frank on this one. What I do believe about religion, and the concept of God, or god, or Dog, is my own business, and begins with not pressing it on others, unless they ask; in such cases I will discuss the subject superficially, without expressing any preferences one way or another…..

Unless, of course, they begin to proselytize. In THOSE cases, I will use every bit of shock value pop psychology I know of to lead them down some primrose path, messing with their heads until I get bored with them…. which usually doesn’t take long; they’re generally fairly uninteresting people. I tend to prefer people who have a bit of salt to their personality, just a touch of insanity somewhere in their blood…. Such ffolkes are much more fun to be around than folks who spend their time feeling bad about wanting to feel good….. and they annoy me far less often, as a rule…..

If God is omnipotent, why does he need my money? — Smart Bee

“The human condition is such that pain and effort are not just symptoms which can be removed without changing life itself; they are rather the modes in which life itself, together with the necessity to which it is bound, makes itself felt. For mortals, the ‘easy life of the gods’ would be a lifeless life.” — Hannah Arendt
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Vague Glimpses of a Rainbow

All the sad notions of propriety had fled,
Screaming their anger for pausing in song,
Until late came the rabid fog, colored in red,
As serenity cried, unafraid to live so strong.

Fallow fields in faithful patience set free,
Dragged from birth, by their own nature cast
Saving each moment against fear yet to be,
Carved into silence, by ignorance held fast.

Historical forces plod slowly ’tis often said
Anxieties streaming stiffly, one epoch to the next.
Cultural mania stands nonchalant in its stead
No sadder epitaph has such bittersweet context.

Patterned bags of forgotten virtue lie in wait
Blessed by reminders whose souls value affinity
Frozen webs surround the fields in gravid state
Grasping passionately within obvious opportunity.

Passage to future realities isn’t guaranteed
Small favors for deities was left off the menu
No roses, nor manna, nor gallant aerial steed
Left traces of fatal, yet originally gracious venue.

~~ gigoid
__________________________________

Having just spent three hours (okay, I exaggerated…. only two….) searching in vain for a pearl to finish with, I became incensed with frustration, and rather than scare my new neighbors with a verbal outburst, I calmly set a parameter, and collected the following pearls on one subject, to wit: human nature…. As far as I can tell, all of them rate a solid 10 on the truth scale….. As always, just follow the bouncing thought as it explores your own inner self….

“The world always makes the assumption that the exposure of an error is identical with the discovery of truth–that the error and truth are simply opposite.  They are nothing of the sort.  What the world turns to, when it is cured on one error, is usually simply another error, and maybe one worse than the first one.” — H. L. Mencken

“The ultimate evil is the weakness, cowardice, that is one of the constituents of so much human nature.  When, rarely, unalloyed nobility does occur, its chances of prevailing are slim.  Yet it exists, and its mere existence is reason enough for not wiping the name of mankind off the slate.” — John Simon

“We are all terrible little creatures.” — Martin Amis

“The tragedy and the magnificence of Homo sapiens together rise from the same smoky truth that we alone among the animal species refuse to acknowledge natural law.” — Robert Ardrey, _The Social Contract_

“Man, were he not corrupted by Governments, is naturally the friend of Man, and that human nature is not of itself vicious.” — Thomas Paine

“I think we’re all Bozos on this Bus!” — Firesign Theater

Now I feel better….. and I hope you do, as well….
__________________________________

“I hope something GOOD came in the mail today so I have  a REASON to live!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

I know just how Zippy felt when he voiced this plaintive wish…. but, the mail doesn’t get here until later, so this will have to do…..  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!