Inherent doubt = innate curiosity….

Ffolkes,

“True knowledge exists in knowing that you know nothing.”

~~ Socrates ~~

spacex-dragon-mars-3

Artist’s rendition of the SpaceX Dragon Descending to Mars

Image from Space.com


Good morning…. I’m not one for taking advice too often; as a doubting curmudgeon, it’s an occupational hazard, one I’m generally happy to avoid. However, I recently received one piece of advice I’d be willing to try out, if nothing else, as it sounds like it would work for me…. It goes like this: “Start the day with a smile. After that you can be your nasty old self again.” Sounds perfect, right?

Okay, so, I’m being snarky. Chalk it up to the hour; it’s tough to be nice at 0400, having been up an hour already. But, I’m not complaining, as it’s my own damn fault, for sleeping well enough to sleep through the time to take the pill that would have kept the dyskinesia from starting up, strong enough to awaken me, and prevent falling back asleep…. Bozoid tendencies DO tend to strike at inconvenient times; it’s the nature of the beast…. Let’s try something a bit different here, shall we?….

That was certainly different; a two day hiatus between paragraphs…. Looks like the new paradigm has arrived, and is configuring itself, in a manner of speaking…. Here we are again, only it’s the day after tomorrow, at 0230….. which just slipped through another little time-warp, to bring us up to the relative present, to wit, now, Thursday, September 24, at 1235, shortly after noon….. The intervening eight-plus hours have slipped into the mire, without incident, or reportable event taking place, so, we can go on from here, should I feel like buckling down to work. Since I don’t, let’s see what happens next….

I’m not certain I like this new paradigm; perhaps I’d best shoot for a paranykuhl, instead. As half a paradigm, maybe, the transition process wouldn’t be as complicated. Nor as hard on my physical being…. For those who aren’t keeping up, (which, no worries, includes yours truly….), it’s now Friday, at 0145. That’s in the A.M. For the past three nights, in this last month of titrating off opioids, it seems the pattern is to include insomnia, to go along with the regular bouts of dyskinesia, as my body complains/reacts to the ever-lessening supply of medicine in the bloodstream. A true joy it is…. NOT.

Wait…. What was that? What the….? We dropped another day, somehow. It’s now Saturday, the 26th; last I knew, it was Thursday…. Hmm…. I’d better get the Tardis checked out….. We’re dropping days like they’re bad habits; not good. Handy, but, not good….

No complaints, though. So be it. I gotta say, though, it’s getting tough to avoid homicidal fantasies…. Ah, well, fuck it. Let’s go dive for pearls, okay? I always feel better for it…. Luigi, help us out here, will ya?….

Shall we Pearl?….

“He that feareth is a slave, were he never so rich, were he never so powerful. But he that is without fear is king of all the world.” — E. R. Eddison, The Worm Ouroboros

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

leeloo 1 019

LeeLoo in PK Mode


Rather than a video today, I’ve decided to show some pictures of my new familiar. As I’ve related, she showed up one morning a week or so ago, demanding to be let in the house, & emphatically informing me she would be moving in. She’s established herself as the soul of the house, and, little by little, we have been bonding, and learning each other’s habits & demands….

To give y’all an idea of her personality, below you’ll find pictures of her doing what she likes best, (like any cat, that, is, of course, sleeping….), as well as some shots of her playing and/or looking for trouble. She’s got a strong PK mode (that’s Psycho Kitty mode, for the uninitiated….). Oh, and, those crumpled up papers you see? Those are her prey; she is part Siamese, and has already learned how to fetch those papers for me to throw for her…. She also likes to sleep near my feet, or against my back, always wanting to be close… a true familiar…. Enjoy the pictures, ffolkes; LeeLoo’s a natural show-off….

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

leeloo 1 025

Preparing to edit documents as I type


leeloo 1 016


Killing Paper Tigers


leeloo 1 022


In her favorite sleeping pose…


leeloo 1 008


Variations on the same theme….


leeloo 1 013


Checking out the shredding pile….


leeloo 1 010


The aftermath of destruction ~~ fatigue….


I’ll keep y’all updated on her progress, as we each explore the depths of our burgeoning partnership…. Here we go again, ffolkes; she’s just dropped her favorite piece of crumpled paper at my feet, and is staring up at me expectantly….. She wants to play fetch again…. wish me luck; this could go on for hours….

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

Dont keep calm

“Say what you will about the sweet miracle of unquestioning faith, I consider a capacity for it terrifying and absolutely vile!” — Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.

One of the most common characteristics of fundamentalist religious fanatics is their denial of the effects of humanity’s insanity on the world’s environment, especially as a cause for the climate changes we are witnessing every day. This inability to use their imagination has been one of the major factors in our inability to make any progress toward a viable culture, one which MIGHT enable us to survive our own stupidity. Alas, I don’t see it happening; nor did I see it last year, when I wrote this rant…. Enjoy! It’s all still completely valid and relevant, if not more so than when written….

From 2/18/2014:

http://www.sfgate.com/business/energy/article/John-Kerry-mocks-those-who-deny-climate-change-5239626.php

Wow…. I am, as much as I ever am, impressed, in a good way, by this statement from one of the administration’s most important lackeys…. I read what John K. said yesterday, or the day before, doesn’t matter…. and for once, the tenor and strength of the message, which is about the imminence of the environmental crisis we face in the near future, is nearly strong enough to get through to some folks, and any ffolkes who see or hear it will be encouraged, if somewhat bemused by this typical jump to join in the fight, onto a bandwagon they should have been driving TWENTY-FIVE FUCKING YEARS AGO, but, instead, act as if it’s a brand new model, which they, of course, claim as the first to seen driving in town….

Of course, so far, I haven’t actually SEEN any action on this by the administration, but, boy-howdy, when they decide to jump on the wagon, they do it with both feet…. He actually used the word ‘sacrifice’ I think, or maybe it was ‘danger’…. regardless, he made a good effort, for a first try, to get the message out there, that we have to act NOW, rather than later…. which is the most important key, if we are to have ANY chance to make any difference in the eventual outcome of events….

Personally, I don’t believe, not for a minute, that they’ll do enough, or be able to cut far enough into the influence of the corporate masters to make enough of a difference; no so far as to change the eventual outcome…. But, hey, they’re at least acknowledging that it needs to be done…. I just don’t think they can do it, not before they are blocked by those who hold the purse strings, and who are making a HUGE profit on global warming, as well as on the use of fossil fuels….

To be honest, I really don’t much feel like ranting today, even with the advent of good news about which to speak, or the importance of spreading the knowledge of the imminence of the problem…. I guess I’m in too mellow a mood, having slept long and well again…. Therefore, I’m going to finish this section with an old-school collection of pearls, to try to gain some perspective on this latest flip-flop by the political machine currently in power in Washington D.C…… Let’s see if SB has some good stuff in there for us today, shall we?…. But, hey, I know!…. Let’s let SB fire the shots randomly, so we can see some of the fat cat preachers do some dancing around, too, dodging figurative bullets alongside the politicians and corporate assholes….

“Capitalism did not arise because capitalists stole the land, but because it was more efficient than feudalism. It will perish because it is not merely less efficient than socialism, but actually self-destructive.” — J. B. S. Haldane

“All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.” — George Orwell (1903-1950), “Animal Farm” 1945

“I don’t know if God exists, but it would be better for His reputation if He didn’t.” — Jules Renard

“We know what happens to people who stay in the middle of the road. They get run over.” — Aneurin Bevan

“Circumstances rule men; men do not rule circumstances.” — Herodotus

“The beauty of religious mania is that it has the power to explain everything. Once God (or Satan) is accepted as the first cause of everything which happens in the mortal world, nothing is left to chance…logic can be happily tossed out the window.” — Stephen King

Come away, O human child!
To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand,
For the world’s more full of weeping than you can understand.

~~ William Butler Yeats, “The Stolen Child” ~~


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

Comedy_Tragedy

Funny Bones

Dreaming the way home, lost, unseen,
from the dance, where
he felt so free, and clean.
Sorrow couldn’t find him there.

Waiting, filling up the hours, hoping,
some connection can be found
keeping busy as bees, coping.
Love creeps in, without a sound.

Fat days, skinny nights, passionate
visions of semi-conscious entities,
cannot seem to fully illuminate
or hide our innermost frailties.

Resolute, find the perfect sense, codify
simple rules with every breath
never waiting, anxious to modify.
fear nothing in life, not even Death.

~~ gigoid ~~


Written 5/13/2013.

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

pearls_3

    It’s a bit esoteric, if not downright obfuscatory, but, it will do nicely, I think. It fits in well with the tentative nature of the rest of this mess…. Enjoy, ffolkes….

For a true master,
Sitting on a throne
Is no different than
Sitting on dirt.

~~ Deng Ming-Dao ~~


“If you’re ridin’ ahead of the herd, take a look back every now and then to make sure it’s still there.” — The Cowboy’s Guide to Life

“Don’t try to have the last word. You might get it.” — Lazarus Long

“A good place to start is where you are.” — Charles Wolf, Jr.

“No harm can come to a good man in life or death.” — Socrates

“By doubting we come at truth.” — Cicero

“We fear things in proportion to our ignorance of them.” — Titus Livius

“Indeed, what is there that does not appear marvelous when it comes to our knowledge for the first time?” — Pliny the Elder — Natural History, Book vii, Sect. 6

“Subtle and insubstantial, the expert leaves no trace; divinely mysterious, he is inaudible.” — Sun Tzu

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

It’s only taken five or six days to complete this Pearl; ah well, so much for the best-laid plans. I don’t seem able to find any part of me that cares much; I’m still fighting my own battles, and can’t find any spare angst, or much of a shit to give. So be it. It’s done, and, at this point, that’s all that matters…. I’ll see y’all in a day or three, ffolkes. I’m making a little progress, so, there’s hope…. Ta for now….

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….


			

“I swear, Lemuel, them politicians is gettin’ tougher… this one took seven bullets, right in the heart!”….

Ffolkes,

Somewhere, over the rainbow, there’s a place that I go to…. where there’s a flower-filled meadow, complete with peaceful, grazing deer, and a babbling brook running along the far edge, leading down the hill, into the forest….. It’s always in my memory, just waiting for me to wander there, to lay myself down in the sweet-smelling grasses for a rest, after walking through the beauty of the many-colored hills, all through the warm afternoon. As I lay my head down, drowsy in the afternoon sun, I hear a melody playing, as if on pan-pipes, drifting lazily out of the depths of the forest. As the lively, yet soothing tune continues to play, a sense of peace and contentment steals over me, nudging me gently into a dream-filled sleep…..

Then, I woke up, in my chair, sitting in front of the computer, shaking my head dazedly, with the dawning realization that I had managed to completely lose track of reality….. The smells of the forest, the sounds of the mice rustling in the grass, as the wind blew softly through my hair…. All of those were, for a moment, more real to me than the chair in which I’m sitting, not entirely comfortably, or the computer at which I’m staring now…. and a lot more pleasant, I’ll guarantee!

I decided when I sat down to begin that I’d try a new technique, of going into a meditative, creative trance, writing whatever I saw in my inner eye…. As I read over that first paragraph, I see it came out rather well, if a bit namby pamby in nature….. The probable next paragraph of what I started would, no doubt, have seen Bambi and/or Thumper give us a visit, to up the cuteness factor….. So, it’s probably a fortunate thing for us all that I gave it up after a single paragraph…. much more sweetness and light this early in the day would soon have me running for the bathroom, to worship at the throne of Ralph…. a euphemism I hope I don’t have to explain….

Thus, suitably warned, y’all should be able to have a pretty good time today…. I have no fucking clue as to what will follow today…. I’m in a capricious mood, with some stuff to do in the BBR that I’m stressed over (a little…. just the stress involved with working my will on a bureaucracy…. It can be done, but, it’s hard work, and takes some stubbornness….of which I have more than enough to suit my purposes….), as well getting this Pearl completed without any extra crap from Murphy’s corner…. So far, he’s behaving himself, so, we’ll see how it goes in that respect…. He’s tricky, ya gotta keep a sharp eye on that quarter, lest he catch us unaware, and unprepared to mitigate the effects of his kind attentions….. It helps to keep moving, so…..

Shall we Pearl?

“What is sauce for the goose may be sauce for the gander but is not necessarily sauce for the chicken, the duck, the turkey, or the guinea hen.” — Alice B. Toklas

Amen to that!….
_____________________________

http://www.sfgate.com/business/energy/article/John-Kerry-mocks-those-who-deny-climate-change-5239626.php

Wow…. I am, as much as I ever am, impressed, in a good way, by this statement from one of the administration’s most important lackeys…. I read what John K. said yesterday, or the day before, doesn’t matter…. and for once, the tenor and strength of the message, which is about the imminence of the environmental crisis we face in the near future, is nearly strong enough to get through to some folks, and any ffolkes who see or hear it will be encouraged, if somewhat bemused by this belated, typical jump to join in the fight, onto a bandwagon they should have been driving TWENTY-FIVE FUCKING YEARS AGO, but, instead, act as if it’s a brand new model, which they, of course, claim as the first to be seen driving in town….

Of course, so far, I haven’t actually SEEN any action on this by the administration, but, boy-howdy, when they decide to jump on the wagon, they do it with both feet…. He actually used the word ‘sacrifice’ I think, or maybe it was ‘danger’…. regardless, he made a good effort, for a first try, to get the most important part of the message out there, that we have to act NOW, rather than later…. a necessity easily seen to be the most important key, if we are to have ANY chance to make any difference in the eventual outcome of events….

Personally, I don’t believe, not for a minute, that they’ll do enough, or be able to cut far enough into the influence of the corporate masters to make enough of a difference; no so far as to change the eventual outcome…. But, hey, they’re at least acknowledging that it needs to be done…. I just don’t think they can do it, not before they are blocked by those who hold the purse strings, and who are making a HUGE profit on global warming, as well as on the continuing use of fossil fuels….

To be honest with y’all, I really don’t much feel like ranting today, even with the advent of good news about which to write, or the importance of spreading the knowledge of the imminence of the problem…. I guess I’m in too mellow a mood, having slept long and well again…. Therefore, I’m going to finish this section with an old-school collection of pearls, to try to gain some perspective on this latest flip-flop by the political machine currently in power in Washington D.C…… Let’s see if SB has some good stuff in there for us today, shall we?…. But, hey, I know!…. Let’s let SB fire the shots randomly, so we can see some of the fat cat preachers do some dancing around, too, dodging figurative bullets alongside the politicians and corporate assholes….

“Capitalism did not arise because capitalists stole the land, but because it was more efficient than feudalism. It will perish because it is not merely less efficient than socialism, but actually self-destructive.” — J. B. S. Haldane

“All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.” — George Orwell (1903-1950), “Animal Farm” 1945

“I don’t know if God exists, but it would be better for His reputation if He didn’t.” — Jules Renard

“We know what happens to people who stay in the middle of the road. They get run over.” — Aneurin Bevan

“Circumstances rule men; men do not rule circumstances.” — Herodotus

“The beauty of religious mania is that it has the power to explain everything. Once God (or Satan) is accepted as the first cause of everything which happens in the mortal world, nothing is left to chance…logic can be happily tossed out the window.” — Stephen King

Come away, O human child!
To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand,
For the world’s more full of weeping than you can understand.

— William Butler Yeats, “The Stolen Child”
_____________________________

Poetry has power far beyond its apparent beauty; all the studies and historical research that we have made throughout the years have never identified for us exactly WHY poetry affects us so deeply, or why it has the power to move us, even if we don’t completely understand its every word…. This poem, to me, is a perfect example of that….

It was written several hundred years ago, precisely spelling the words used just as the current usage of the time demanded,turning common modern English into Middle English with a broad Scots accent, just about as thick a brogue as I’ve ever heard…. Yet, in spite of the unfamiliarity and strangeness of the words, and the odd structure of ideas the Scots are so fond of using, it is perfectly understandable, as well as incredibly moving, when the sorrow felt by the author is shared by the reader…. It’s a classic for a reason, a perfect expression of human emotions, simply, yet elegantly showing us the power of common experience to give us peace, and joy…. Enjoy!….

Highland Mary

Ye banks, and braes, and streams around
The castle o’ Montgomery,
Green be your woods, and fair your flowers,
Your waters never drumlie!
There Simmer first unfald her robes,
And there the langest tarry:
For there I took the last Fareweel
O’ my sweet Highland Mary.

How sweetly bloom’d the gay, green birk,
How rich the hawthorn’s blossom;
As underneath their fragrant shade,
I clasp’d her to my bosom!
The golden Hours, on angel wings,
Flew o’er me and my Dearie;
For dear to me as light and life
Was my sweet Highland Mary.

Wi’ mony a vow, and lock’d embrace,
Our parting was fu’ tender;
And pledging aft to meet again,
We tore oursels asunder:
But Oh, fell Death’s untimely frost,
That nipt my Flower sae early!
Now green’s the sod, and cauld’s the clay,
That wraps my Highland Mary!

O pale, pale now, those rosy lips
I aft hae kiss’d sae fondly!
And clos’d for ay, the sparkling glance,
That dwalt on me sae kindly!
And mouldering now in silent dust,
That heart that lo’ed me dearly!
But still within my bosom’s core
Shall live my Highland Mary.

~~ Robert Burns  ~~

_____________________________

Having thus completed my morning’s set of self-inflicted obligations with admirable dispatch,  so much so, we are looking at 66% completion of the assigned tasks only one and a half hours into the given period of time to work on it….. I guess I should either pat myself on the back, or take a break….. I hate to do that when I’m on such a roll, but, if I don’t, I’ll be done in just a few minutes, and I’m not ready for that…. So, break it is, as my shoulder joints are far too stiff and sore to reach my back…. Upon my return, I won’t say anything, I’ll just go on to the picking process for this old-school pearl, one with random, harlequin-flavored parameters of choice…. See ya on the other side…

“The First Amendment is often inconvenient.  But that is besides the point. Inconvenience does not absolve the government of its obligation to tolerate speech.” — Justice Anthony Kennedy, in 91-155

“You’ll never have a quiet world till you knock the patriotism out of the human race.” — George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950)

“Even the lion has to defend himself against flies.” — Smart Bee

“If it had not been for the discontent of a few fellows who had not been satisfied with their conditions, you would still be living in caves. Intelligent discontent is the mainspring of civilization. Progress is born of agitation. It is agitation or stagnation.” — Eugene V Debs (1855-1926), American socialist

“All my life, I always wanted to be somebody.  Now I see that I should have been more specific.” — Jane Wagner, _The Search For Intelligent Life In The Universe_ — [Performed by Lily Tomlin]

“The normal American of the “pure blooded” majority goes to bed every night with the uneasy feeling that there is a burglar under the bed and gets up every morning with the sneaking fear that his underwear has been stolen.” — H. L. Mencken, Baltimore _Evening Sun_, July 16, 1923

“Hand me a pair of leather pants and a CASIO keyboard — I’m living for today!” — Zippy the Pinhead

Damn, I’m good sometimes…. with a bit of help from SB….
_____________________________

“Courage is the price that life exacts for granting peace. The soul that knows it not, knows no release from little things; knows not the livid loneliness of fear.” — Amelia Earhart

No doubt, there are those in the world who would say that what I do here is a waste of my time, as well as a waste of the time of anyone else who may stop by to read it…. All I can say about that, is, well, “Fuck you, AND the white horse you think you rode in on….. While you’re at it, on the way out, with my boot print firmly planted upon your extremely large and ugly ass, you can shut the door behind you, so the good ffolkes who generally stop in won’t be distracted by your idiocy”….  Or, something along those lines…. I’m getting a little crusty in my old age, I guess, and I just don’t give much of a damn about the mouthings of fools…. Take what I say, or leave it, but, don’t try to judge it without offering some evidence, and some dialogue…. (See the above quote re: Courage….)

That said, I’d better proof this damn thing, or I’ll end up regretting it later, I know…. Well, there you go…. Proofed, polished, and probably screwed up royally… but, it’s done, which, as we know, is the only characteristic that counts with me…. Hence, I’m outta here…. Hasta la mañana, amigos….

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

dozer3

Pilfered hearts, buried in parody….

Ffolkes,

It’s tempting…. the urge to just give it up is getting strong, and the reasons to do so are growing more compelling each day. As I sit to write today, I’m struck by how conflicted I am inside, where one part of me wants to fulfill the routine I’ve established over the last two years, and another part wants me to just go back to bed. For those two years, the latter part of me has been meek, unable to have its way very often, if at all, over the big, blustering, powerful urge to spill my guts….. Of late, though, it has gained strength, and weight, and is now able to bring a sense of controversy to these morning battles with myself…..

Obviously, the part of me that is still dreaming in bed has lost again, as the words keep flowing on screen; I guess the meek aren’t inheriting the earth quite yet…. It does, however, create yet another conundrum for me to solve, to wit: what the hell will I do today for an intro section? I’ve used up just about every style there is, or, at least, all I can think of, and none of them have been workable as an every day kind of opening, that would stand up to the test of time. The closest I’ve come is these wandering, blathering personal commentaries, four or five paragraphs discussing the workings of my head, which, though they may be interesting at times, probably get a bit trying to the patience to read often….

I’ve tried fictional openings…. I’ve tried ranting, I’ve tried pearls. I’ve tried to be logical, and I’ve dipped deeply into the well of nonsense to draw up some humor, such as it is. I’ve even used the Keystone Kops method, and, in times of extreme emergency, made things up. Hell, I’ve even considered the use of high explosives, but, I couldn’t get the permits…. Oh well…. I did have high hopes for that one, but, city hall gets nervous at private citizens asking for permission to blow stuff up….

Oh well, by this time, I should know better than to get all worked up about it….. The struggle to decide on what to write about every day will continue, as long as I keep flogging myself to write…. It’s looking like that isn’t going to cease any time in the near future, so, I’ll have to learn to live with a daily battle in my head, at least until I learn how to live with it, and accept it as reality….. That is one answer, in truth….I could be all Zen, and call this process a koan, a learning experience, and realize that it is acceptable just the way it is…. Life is struggle, and cannot be lived without pain. Learning to accept the pain is what eventually causes one to be able to live in harmony, and the pain, along with the struggle, will pass into memory….

Yeah, that’s the ticket…. Zen rules!….. Well, it helps, anyway…. Ah well, it’s happened again, so we’ll take the five paragraphs of relative crap, and go on to the next steps in this dance macabre….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“Work is not an end in itself; there must always be time enough for love.” — Robert Heinlein
_____________________________

“I put aside my copy of “BOWLING WORLD” and think about GUN CONTROL legislation..” — Zippy the Pinhead

You know, the most amazing thing, to me, about this whole issue with the spying on our telephone and computer data by the government? It is the absolute genuine surprise on the part of the administration at how upset everyone (i.e. the public, or, more simply, “us”…) is over this issue. It’s as if they can’t believe that people are actually upset that the government is collecting all of our phone conversations, and all of our email correspondence, in order to, according to them, “defeat terrorism”.

They, in their absolute confidence in their own rightness, are having a hard time with the fact that NONE of the rest of the populace, at least, none of those outside of the government itself, agrees with them….. For some unknown reason (well, you know it, and I know it, but, they don’t….), they think they can do whatever they want in the pursuit of their imaginary demons, and we’re all supposed to fall right in line with that…. In truth, it makes me feel a little better about things when I think about the reaction by the public; I had almost given up on them ever caring at all what the BRC did to them….

I’m not going to rant again today about this; it’s all over the news, and many people are presenting some well-thought-out, and well-researched and -written articles on the subject, probably much better than I could do. I like to think I’d be funnier, but, that isn’t necessarily of importance to such pieces, so, for now, I’m leaving it to them to distribute the information people need to be clear on the issue. Clarity is necessary, because this is one of the best opportunities we, as the public, have had in some time to bring light to bear on the clandestine activities being perpetrated on us by our supposed leaders….. I think it is important NOT to let them off the hook on this, and bring all the pressure we can to make reforms, at least in this one area….

Rather than rant, though, I will put together another pearl on this subject, because I believe that the more we hold the BRC up for examination, whether that regard is focused on humor, their (absent) virtue, their chicanery, or just their displays of idiocy, it’s a good thing to keep to keep the light focused on them as long as possible. If we don’t hold our leaders, such as they are, up for our criticism of their acts against us, then, who will? They certainly aren’t going to be pulling their own covers, or showing off their latest theft from us; it’s in their best interests to keep as much of that away from our attention as they are able to do. So, I’ll keep on making fun of them, just as long as they keep lying to us….

Therefore, here is another seven-star pearl, with the clear intent of either making fun of, or bringing unwanted exposure to, our Beloved Ruling Class, and all of their myrmidons…. (a great word, go ahead, look it up….) (No, I’m serious, you need to look it up, or the first quote won’t make any sense to you….) (Of course, none of it MAY make any sense, but, I do what I can, and no more….) (Ah, the hell with it, it means, essentially, “faceless minions in vast numbers, set to do their bidding”….)

The Bible is true this I know,
For the Bible tells me so.

— Jordan Henderson

“Do not needlessly endanger your lives until I give you the signal.” — Dwight D. Eisenhower
(One of the first recorded instances of a President using computer programming techniques on the public….)

“An election year is the time politicians want to help us out of all the trouble they got us into in the first place.” — Smart Bee

“Disco oil bussing will create a throbbing Naugahyde pipeline running straight to the tropics from the rug producing regions and devalue the dollar!” — Zippy the Pinhead

“Muddy water let stand becomes clear.” — Lao Tse

“Nothing can now be believed which is seen in a newspaper.” — Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826)

“If life is merely a joke, the question still remains: For whose amusement?” — Smart Bee

Well, there you have it…. I can’t make it any clearer than that….. Well, perhaps I can…. we’ll try later…..
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I only have one thing to say about this morning’s choice of poems…. Take note, for you are reading the work of a genius…..

Reflection On A Wicked World

Purity
Is obscurity.

~~ Ogden Nash ~~

So Does Everybody Else, Only Not So Much

O all ye exorcizers come and exorcize now, and ye clergymen draw nigh and clerge, For I wish to be purged of an urge. It is an irksome urge, compounded of nettles and glue, And it is turning all my friends back into acquaintances, and all my acquaintances into people who look the other way when I heave into view. It is an indication that my mental buttery is butterless and my mental larder lardless, And it consists not of “Stop me if you’ve heard this one,” but of “I know you’ve heard this one because I told it to you myself, but I’m going to tell it to you again regardless,” Yes I fear I am living beyond my mental means. When I realize that it is not only anecdotes that I reiterate but what is far worse, summaries of radio programs and descriptions of cartoons in newspapers and magazines. I want to resist but I cannot resist recounting the bright sayings of celebrities that everybody already is familiar with every word of; I want to refrain but cannot refrain from telling the same audience on two successive evenings the same little snatches of domestic gossip about people I used to know that they have never heard of. When I remember some titillating episode of my childhood I figure that if it’s worth narrating once it’s worth narrating twice, in spite of lackluster eyes and dropping jaws, And indeed I have now worked my way backward from titillating episodes in my own childhood to titillating episodes in the childhood of my parents or even my parents-in-laws, And what really turns my corpuscles to ice, I carry around clippings and read them to people twice. And I know what I am doing while I am doing it and I don’t want to do it but I can’t help doing it and I am just another Ancient Mariner, And the prospects for my future social life couldn’t possibly be barrener. Did I tell you that the prospects for my future social life couldn’t be barrener?

~~ Ogden Nash ~~

_____________________________

As often is the case at this point, I have no rantable material available for this section…. Oh, subject matter isn’t an issue, only the degree of angst available to drive it to the proper pitch. Anything less than shrill just doesn’t get anyone’s attention, or release enough of the angst for duty elsewhere…. Such is life, as we say in the blog world (like that is an actual place, with inhabitants, and all that implies….).  What this means in terms of reality is another pearl of a random nature…. I’ll see what Smart Bee starts off with; that will provide me with a search parameter. Then, when I’ve got an idea in mind, I’ll do a fast cruise through the dB, and pick out the best pearls to make the point….

All this doesn’t generally take very long, but, this morning, it could take a while, as I’ve already put SB through some heavy paces…. We’ll see how it’s holding up…. You may use the first quote you see as the certificate of entitlement for the remainder of the pearl….

“What about reality, you ask?  Well, as far as I’m concerned, reality can go take a flying fuck at a rolling doughnut.” — Stephen King
(This is possibly the best single pearl I have ever encountered!…)

“How often I found where I should be going only by setting out for somewhere else.” — R. Buckminster Fuller
(Okay, that’s a good one, too….)

“How pleasant then to be insane.” — F. Scott Fitzgerald
(Ooh, ooh! Me, too!….)

“Are we at last brought to such a humiliating and debasing degradation, that we cannot be trusted with arms for our own defense? Where is the difference between having our arms in our own possession and under our own direction, and having them under the management of Congress? If our defense be the _real_ object of having those arms, in whose hands can they be trusted with more propriety, or equal safety to us, as in our own hands?”
— Patrick Henry
(Whoops…. a bit of direction change there, eh?…. Let’s see where it takes us….

“Silence gives consent.” — Smart Bee, channeling the sages of all ages…
(Yep, that’s a good one, as well… nice job, SB… That’s five, let’s find two more, to finish strong….)

“Government [is] an illusion the governed should not encourage.” — John Updike, Couples
(Hmm….)

“Be assured that a walk through the ocean of most Souls would scarcely get your Feet wet.  Fall not in Love, therefore: it will stick to your face.” — National Lampoon, “Deteriorata”
(Oh no! What happened? You did that deliberately, didn’t you… Well, no way, Bubba… try again… Two, and both have to be good…)

“Don’t SAY things. What you ARE stands over you the while, and thunders so that I cannot hear what you say to the contrary.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson — Social Aims

“I have been a stranger in a strange land.” — Old Testament — Exodus ii, 22

Okay, that will do…. It’s not perfect, but, it’s relatively inoffensive while still being obscurely disturbing…  It had better do. I’m out of quotes…. Smart Bee went on strike after this last one, so, we’re done here; you can thank me later….
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Or, you can thank me now, as it is now completely done, and your suffering is at an end. So is mine, for today… Well, I do have to go read it again, to at least make a try to find the typos that are always there, so, I may as well get that done, too….

Whew! Well, I can see now, I’ll be handing out the E tickets at the beginning of today’s ride, as it takes off through the numberless corridors and infinitude of dead-end tunnels of my mind…. Come to think of it, I should probably check to make sure my insurance is paid up, and that all the safety equipment is in place, before I post…. Oh well, I can’t be responsible for those who don’t trouble to stick their own clouds of preconceived notions in their pocket before coming on board…. They’ll have to take their chances along with the rest of us….

That all being said, I think it came out pretty well, if a bit flagrantly scattered. Hmm, nice…. “Flagrantly scattered” might just be a new iconic phrase to describe this blog; don’t be surprised to see it again somewhere…. Sorry, distracted again; it’s happening a lot today…. Any who, I guess, since this is the closing section, I should bring this to a close, so, I will…. TTFN….  Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…. Oh, and, Blessed Be…. (No, I’m not Wiccan, but, I like the thought…. it fits in with my concept of “good vibrations”….)(Plus, it will, from this day on, always be there, at the end of every post, as a tribute to, and to specifically direct it to, my friend Carole, to add to her good vibrations, in her fight against the big C….)

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

Brains for breakfast….

Ffolkes,

I been yuckified! Well, not really, but, it was all I could come up with on short notice…. In any case, it gave me a chance to use the word, ‘yuckified’, a word of my own creation, (I think it’s mine, and, in truth, sincerely hope it is ….. ), meaning exactly what it sounds like…. Having thus gotten  a quantity of both awkward adolescent humor, and, barely comedic, left-over silliness from childhood, out of my system, right off the bat, I can, presumably, proceed to a somewhat more adult, certainly more adroit, use of the written word to communicate, whatever it is I’m trying to get out of my head today….

The title of these missives very seldom has anything concrete to do with what I write each day; the two processes, of picking the title, and of picking a subject for the day’s effort, are completely separate, in time and intent. I boot up, type in the password, and, once all is ready, bring up the programs I use to compose with, with the picking of the title the last step in that process…. I then do other stuff until I’m ready to write (drink coffee, take pills, yawn, stretch, scratch, worship, etc….). Today, however, I must have had a precognitive episode, when the given title swam into my conscious mind, apparently looking ahead to what would follow…. brains for breakfast.

Now, as a former chef, the word brains implies a different thing than to what may come into the mind’s eye for the average, non-food industry, citizen; I see the dish I’ve only seen prepared, (no, I didn’t have the courage to actually taste it….),  brains de veau aux buerre blanc, (sorry, forgot the French word for ‘brains’) whereas most other folks would probably get a replay of a zombie movie running through their head. I’m not sure who would be considered the less fortunate….

Therefore, and whereas, if you catch my drift, we’ll go on, to bigger and better things…. Sorry if I seem stuck in cliche-land, but, my use of such is actually a form of self-therapy, suggested to me by my doctor, as a ready-made form of rebellion that causes no harm, beyond the normal loss of brain cells caused by hearing anything of so ancient and mundane… without even giving a moment’s notice to the very subtle, yet destructive, attitude-shaping that is implied by the use of such simple phrases….

Take the phrase “bigger and better things”… this is presented in such a way as to imply that bigger and better is always a good thing, whereas we know the opposite is more often true in reality, or, at the very least, half the time, an assertion which is implied, and verified, by the inherently balanced, symmetrical nature of that reality…. To assume that making anything bigger is to make it better is to deny half of reality, and such attitudes have a way of coming back to haunt us…. Reality has a very powerful tendency to assert itself, especially if our attitudes are in opposition to its nature….

Some folks seem to like getting slapped by reality, though, and who am I to keep people from having fun? Besides, I’ve got other fish to fry, as I now have to turn my mind to putting together something coherent, and a bit more practical, in terms of literature, or I’ll never get done with this today…. Though I hear the muttering in the back of the audience, about “so, what’s wrong with that?”, I’ll ignore it, long enough to bring this mess to a close, and get on with today’s dive into the ocean of knowledge, searching for those gems that point the way to virtual wisdom, which, some days, is all we can hope for….

Shall we Pearl?…..
_____________________________

Okay, well, that came out okay…. let’s see what kind of damage I can do here…. I think the operative word I’ll use today is one that came to me as I began this section, one I used above to describe how I’d like what I write to be, to wit: coherent. For me, it’s quite a stretch sometimes, to maintain any sort of connection to that word, given the complexity of both what I write about, and the complexity of the way I write, and express myself…. Both of these, one might say with accuracy, assume TOO much complexity in my hands, but, it’s my blog, and I don’t HAVE to be simple if I don’t want to… Call me a curmudgeon, if you wish…. actually, PLEASE call me a curmudgeon, it’s one of my life’s ambition to be seen as one….

Okay, I’m now officially babbling, having once again gotten too involved in the writing, and forgetting what I was writing about… Coherence, that is, which I’ve obviously lost all chance at achieving in this particular section….. Probably all for the best, as it’s a tough one for me at any time, much less on demand…. Fortunately, I have a way out of this conundrum…. it’s called dropping back five yards and punting the ball, or as we call it around here, “Let’s feed it to Mikey!”…. In other words, we’ll see if Smart Bee has any aphorisms to contribute, that might point the way to finding at least a modicum of coherent thought, and if not, well, at least it will be amusing, for a short time…. we can always hope, can’t we?…..

“Love the little trade which thou hast learned, and be content therewith.” — Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (121-180 AD) — Meditations, iv, 31

“A mighty hunter, and his prey was man.” — Alexander Pope (1688-1744) — Windsor Forest, Line 61

“Spintharus, speaking in commendation of Epaminondas, says he scarce ever met with any man who knew more and spoke less.” — Plutarch (46-120 AD)
— Of Hearing, 6

A word is dead
When it is said
Some say.
I say it just
Begins to live
That day.

— Emily Dickinson

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

“What happens to the wide-eyed observer when the window between reality and unreality breaks and the glass begins to fly?” — Stephen King

Hush little bright line, don’t you cry
You’ll be a cliche by and by.

— Fred Allen

Sometimes, it works better than others…. this is one of those times….. This is a great pearl, so I hope you were paying attention, ffolkes….
_____________________________

It’s really okay if you didn’t pay attention…. though it’s a pretty coherent thought. At any rate, I feel like a bit more of Emily, just to keep things from becoming too normal…. Even if it’s a bit obscure, even for her, it’s a soothing poem, to my mind, and well worth the immersion…..

The cricket sang,
And set the sun,
And workmen finished, one by one,
   Their seam the day upon.

The low grass loaded with the dew,
The twilight stood as strangers do
With hat in hand, polite and new,
   To stay as if, or go.

A vastness, as a neighbor, came,–
A wisdom without face or name,
A peace, as hemispheres at home,–
   And so the night became.

~~ Emily Dickinson ~~

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“…when all government… in little as in great things, shall be drawn to Washington as the centre of all power, it will render powerless the checks provided of one government on another and will become as venal and oppressive as the government from which we separated.” — Thomas Jefferson, 1821

The framers of the Constitution knew what they were doing when they tried to build in safeguards in the system of government they chose after the revolution against England. They structured it with checks to the balance of power in each section, Executive, Legislative, and Judicial, and reserving several rights to the people that had historically been reserved for the governments themselves, including the right to bear arms, one that every government in history has tried to restrict for its own use. The right to bear arms, the right to vote, the right to gather to protest, to speak freely, all these have, at one time or another through the last four or five millennia, been restricted, until men like Jefferson, Mason, and Washington took those rights for themselves, and offered the same opportunity to their descendants.

In fact, I regard it as proof of this assertion to find that the government, not only of this country, but all of them, is STILL trying to restrict the rights of the populace to bear arms. To my way of thinking, the most recent attempts by the government to curtail the public’s ability to obtain the means to protect themselves adequately merely serve to point out how accurate are statements such as the above, showing how little human nature has evolved, or advanced in the intervening years…. I’d be hard pressed to call the changes we’ve seen anything other than a retreat from achieving a more civilized society, as the populace continues to live in fear, most of which is manufactured by that very same government, to distract them from what is going on behind the scenes; for example, observe the data mining and illegal surveillance being carried on by Saint Obama and the current administration….

Sorry to apply the sarcastic epithet to the POTUS, but, his recent actions have revealed a lot of stuff that indicates that, yes, he IS a politician, and, as such, has been lying to the public on a regular basis since entering office, a habit much practiced by all those who enter those hallowed doors, as it turns out.

Historically, it seems, ever since I’ve been alive, for the last 62 years, each and every man who has been in the White House, with the possible exception of Jimmy Carter, has lied to the public on a regular basis, without qualms, and without apology…. This isn’t news, or new news, at all…. just go back over the headlines and op-ed pages over that period, and the evidence of what I have asserted is plain to see….

That is why I won’t ever consider any alterations to the second Amendment, or the First, or to any of them…. I still regard them as law, and see any attempts to restrict them as being acts of treason against the principles by which they were conceived and enacted. I DON’T trust ANY politician, not one who spends millions to get elected, even if, or especially if, the money isn’t theirs… The mere act of WANTING to be an elected official implies insanity to me, either of a sociopathic nature, or an evangelical one, either of which is dangerous to allow into any position of authority over others, as they will ALWAYS act to serve their own self-interests first….

’nuff said…. gigoid has spoken, and has no more to say on this subject, except…. Leave my Bill of Rights alone, or pay the consequences….

“Disobedience, in the eyes of anyone who has read history, is man’s original virtue. It is through disobedience that progress has been made, through disobedience and through rebellion.” — Oscar Wilde
_____________________________

Well, that’s a mellow little rant, quite polite in tone and length…. not sure what prompted it, other than what is obvious in the quote, but it’s apparently been in there a while, as it flowed out quite smoothly, for a change…. Let’s see how the whole thing holds up….. Well, it’s definitely a Pearl of Virtual Wisdom… so, off it goes, and so be it….  Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..

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

Even aged literati won’t bow or scrape before six….

Ffolkes,
At 0607 in the morning, I don’t expect my reaction time to be at maximum, nor am I be surprised to find my mind less than fully awake and prepared for immediate use, at least not for any use of sustained duration, or of a complex nature. But, it is a bit embarrassing to sit here and watch the screen-saver come on, while vacantly staring at the screen, and to still be frantically searching the empty, echoing corridors of my thus-far uninspired mind for an opening statement or idea. I have the screen saver set to come on after 3 minutes of no user activity, so I am forced to admit that I sat here and blankly stared for at least that long. Pathetic…..

On further reflection, however, I can see that having the screen-saver pop on has acted as some sort of release, or stimulation, if you will, and the words are now flowing. I guess serendipity comes in different colors and shapes after all…. whatever the case may be, I’ll take it.

I’ve learned not to question such little gifts from the universe; if I did, they might cease to happen, and so far, they’ve been responsible for some of my best work (and, in fact, have often been responsible for the creation of ANY work at all…..). Now, if I could only see what to write about next, I’d be good to go…… can’t have everything, I suppose. As Steven Wright said, “Of course you can’t have everything. Where would you put it all?”

Since I already lack sufficient storage space, we’ll just get on with the business at hand….. shall we Pearl?…
___________________________________

We cannot direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails. — Proverb

This is the sort of pearl that is much, much deeper than it appears at first glance. (Note: It seems common to find the most complex and deep issues described or related in very short sentences. Hmm…. probably something to do with K.I.S.S., which the universe believes in strongly…) Applied as a metaphor for human interactions with reality, the proverb assumes an even greater degree of relevance, as it implies both choice and hope. Both are always present, but not always in view; such aphorisms as this can help one to find where they are standing, hidden in plain sight…

It is clear to most by now that reality does not adjust to our desires; any adjustments made must be on our part, as we have absolutely no power to change any aspect of reality other than our response to it. A hard lesson, one that many never learn, or come to terms with, and one which guarantees they will find life to be one long struggle, as they spend their days in doomed attempts to make what is into what they wish it to be. To use the analogy provided, they never learn to trim the sails of their vessel, and find themselves constantly fighting with, and cursing, the wind, never realizing their own lack of understanding is what sends them into uncharted waters.

Thus, from simplicity does great wisdom arise; to reach our desired destination in life, one must learn to trim and adjust the sails of our vessel, to make the best use of the wind that the universe sends in our direction. Or, more plainly, we can only make changes to ourselves, not to reality. Learning this one simple lesson can turn a life out of balance completely around, and give it the direction and stability it has ever sought, enabling the most troubled soul to sail into the light, and out of the darkness that engulfs those who argue with reality…..
___________________________________

“I think the sky is blue because it’s a shift from black through purple to blue, and it has to do with where the light is.   You know, the farther we get into darkness, and there’s a shifting of color of light into the blueness, and I think as you go farther and farther away from the reflected light we have from the sun or the light that’s bouncing off this earth, uh, the darker it gets … I think if you look at the color scale, you start at black, move it through purple, move it on out, it’s the shifting of color.  We mentioned before about the stars singing, and that’s one of the effects of the shifting of colors.” — Pat Robertson, The 700 Club

At last! The true, unacknowledged, but obvious, proof of how the concept of Christian Science came to be…… This has to be one of the finest examples I’ve ever seen of a man who, a) had no idea when he started to speak of what he meant to say, and b) opted to “fake it” and just make something up. Pat has apparently been listening to his own hype, and is convinced that, if it comes out of his mouth, it must be divinely inspired….

I imagine that the God that Pat claims to speak for lets him get away with shit like this because He is too busy laughing His divine Ass off to do anything about it. No point in throwing the lightning bolt too long after the causal event; no one would get the lesson. Plus, why give up such a cheap form of entertainment?….. It’s not like Hee Haw, or Laugh In, is still on the air….. and I imagine even God needs a break every so often from listening to Pat, or Oral, or Jim-boy, to keep from frying them in their tracks on live TV…. even He thinks twice about scaring the cattle, er, paying customers, er, congregation……
___________________________________

“The greater your need to make a good catch, the greater the probability your partner will deliver his worst throw.  (If you can’t touch it, you can’t trick it.)” — The Ninth Commandment of Frisbee — Dan Roddick

Ah, sweet memory! I’ve previously mentioned my status as a hippie, forged during the late 1960’s in Berkeley, at the UC where I attended post-high-school. My life and times in the birthplace of hippie culture during this era of societal change imbued me with a true and complete set of hippie skills and attributes. I play guitar and sing folk music. I wear my hair long. I am politically active, dedicated to peace, brotherhood, and love. And, I am a master of the Frisbee. Well, used to be. Now I’d probably throw myself into a world of hurt if I even made the simplest toss, even if I warmed up first. But, back in the day, (what does that mean, exactly? Which day?….. slang is funky sometimes….) trick catches were one of my specialties, and I can attest to the accuracy of the Ninth Commandment.

One of my best tricks involved a softly hovering throw that approaches the catcher on a level about waist high. I would first kick the disc in the center, on the fly, knocking it straight up, but keeping it spinning in a hover. I’d then step under it, and bump it as it came down, right in the center again, with the top of my head. It went up again, and as it came down, still spinning, I’d strike it with one finger, again in the center, to send it back up again. On the fourth time the disc descended, I would catch it on one finger, in the center, and watch it spin there until I flipped it up and grabbed it with a flourish, or just let the spin run out and let it hang on the finger as it stopped.

In reading back over that passage, I can see that it would definitely be more impressive to see than it is to read…… but, it sure felt good when I nailed the trick, and it invariably impressed any girls in the vicinity; at 19 or 20 years-old, that was key….. especially if I hit the immediate throw back to my compatriot with a double-skip, right to his moving target…. Always a crowd-pleaser, the double-skip…
___________________________________

A programmer from a very large computer company went to a software conference and then returned to report to his manager, saying: “What sort of programmers work for other companies? They behaved badly and were unconcerned with appearances.  There hair was long and unkempt and their clothes were wrinkled and old. They crashed our hospitality suite and they made rude noises during my presentation.”

The manager said: “I should have never sent you to the conference. Those programmers live beyond the physical world. They consider life absurd, an accidental coincidence. They come and go without knowing limitations. Without a care, they live only for their programs. Why should they bother with social conventions?”

They are alive within the Tao.

Yesterday, a short discussion was posted here on the subject of hacker culture, and the myths and philosophy popular among those who program computers, the ones who write the programs the rest of us use every day…. This pseudo koan exemplifies the type of thinking that permeates the culture, perfectly describing how true hackers see themselves.

As a group, hackers are highly educated in comparison to the general population, and share a certain predilection for science fiction and fantasy literature and media, mythology, philosophy, (particularly Zen Buddhism and Taoism), and properly spoken and written English (very important in computer programming; computers are VERY literal, and precise use of the language is a key element of creating successful programs, i.e. programs that actually perform as requested….) Hacker jargon assumes a deep knowledge of the subjects pertinent to them, and shows not vicious, but amused disdain for “normals”. Ambitions among hackers involve successful hacks, or writing the code for a major OS, or some other piece of programming that achieves industry-wide acceptance and acclimation; to become a demi-god is the ultimate goal, one whose name is familiar to anyone who writes code.

Contrary to many segments of society at large, where too much education creates mistrust, and the most admired qualities are simplicity and acquiescence to being average, in hacker culture, complexity, elegance, wit, a defiant roguishness, and strong math skills are qualities admired by all, and the status of demi-god is sought after assiduously by every individual who considers themselves to be a true programmer…. and demi-gods aren’t required, or expected, to act like normal folks….

“The computer programmer is a creator of universes for which he alone is responsible. Universes of virtually unlimited complexity can be created in the form of computer programs.” — Joseph Weizenbaum, _Computer Power and Human Reason_
__________________________________

“And if it please you, so; if not, why, so.” — William Shakespeare (1564-1616), The Two Gentlemen of Verona — Act ii, Sc. 1

Okay, so we all know how Will the Thrill failed to make my most wanted list by now, so I won’t go into that. But, more evidence in my argument’s favor keeps cropping up, and this is a fine example. Though I know it is likely a bit clearer if taken in context to the surrounding action in the play, still, this line is just about as obscure as can be. I’m certain that the reaction from the audiences who first were exposed to this was the same as mine; I immediately thought, upon reading it, “HUH? What did you say?” My next thoughts were, in approximate order, “Let me outta here! I’m late for an appointment! I hear my mom calling! I’m on a mission from God! Anything! Just don’t make me listen to that again!”

Perhaps I can make myself clearer re: this opinion by making a small analogy. If Will The Middle English Thrill were alive today, who do you think he would most resemble, in terms of his fame, his literary and/or entertainment skills and accomplishments, and his overall status as a celebrity?  In my inner eye, a picture of Michael Jackson and Madonna fight over who is to pop up first. That frightening image is replaced by Stephen King, which is even more frightening. In a final attempt to find an acceptable comparison that is also accurate enough for my purposes, my third thought was “Aha!” followed by an old image of Yoko Ono sitting with John Lennon on a white bed….. I suppose John Lennon isn’t such a bad comparison, but Yoko Ono? Please… spare me…. and please spare me from any more Shakespeare…. that overblown twit….
___________________________________

Well, it’s another fine mess I’ve created here, now, isn’t it? Fear not, I’m nothing if not accommodating; you’ll find a box of handi-wipes by the door as you leave the building. I’ve found it to be a well-appreciated amenity after sessions such as this one. Just remember, please, to dispose of them in the proper receptacle, also placed near the exit door for your convenience, and painted a bright orange so you can’t miss it…..

In the words of the prophet, ta ta, then, luvs….. y’all take care out there…..


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

gigoid

Kowabunga!

Confused? Two words: muskrat love…..

Ffolkes,
I got bitten yesterday, by the poetry bug. It stung enough that I had to write a haiku to ease the pain…..

Immediately Haiku

Sometimes the best way
is to begin
at the first spot.
Other times, not.

gigoid did it…blame him…

What better way to begin a day? I could think of a couple offhand, but they would both involve items not currently in stock……this will do for a Monday…..
___________________________________

“The most important things are the hardest things to say. They are the things you get ashamed of, because words diminish them– words shrink things that seemed limitless when they were in your head to no more than living size when they’re brought out. But it’s more than that, isn’t it? The most important things lie too close to wherever your secret heart is buried, like landmarks to a treasure your enemies would love to steal away. And you may make revelations that cost you dearly only to have people look at you in a funny way, not understanding what you’ve said at all, or why you thought it was so important that you almost cried when you were saying it. That’s the worst, I think. When the secret stays locked within not for the want of a teller but for the want of an understanding ear.” — Stephen King

This is an incredibly perceptive observation, and a clearly stated manifesto of belief in the power of our humanity, as well as our vulnerability. I know Stephen King is very popular as an author, but I can say truthfully that, though I read a LOT, I’ve never read one of his novels. It’s not him, it’s his genre (which he pretty much owns outright), to wit: horror stories. Every plot I’ve ever seen of his outlined on the jacket sleeve or back cover of a book sent me packing off to what subjects I will read; I decline to deliberately promote nightmares, and I’ve never been a fan of gore. Probably comes with hating the sight of my own blood. 

While my tastes in reading material are eclectic, from cereal boxes to box sets of just about any subject, they’ve never included horror; either movies or books. Life and Reality have always been plenty full of events, thoughts, people, and situations that are scary or frightening; that has always been enough for me. I’ve never particularly enjoyed the whole adrenaline scene, other than when necessary to preserve one’s health or welfare. I don’t need to deliberately put myself through the whole “scared me so bad I had nightmares” scenario; it’s not my idea of fun and relaxation.

Sure, little zaps of adrenaline can be cool; addictions always are at first. That’s why skiing, para-gliding, cliff diving, and such activities are popular, for that little bit of bloodthirsty savage in all of us, almost hoping for a crash. Even I learned to (perversely, but predictably) enjoy, and utilize the adrenaline one finds in martial arts, and real-time fighting, an activity I encountered on a weekly basis as part of my work, but it isn’t something I recommend, especially for the faint of heart, or their cousins, the bleeding hearts. There are better ways to get kicks like that, ways that don’t include subjecting one’s self, or one’s sensibilities to the indignity of near-death experiences, either real, or out of someone else’s demented mind….

Nonetheless, not being partial to his books doesn’t prevent me from observing, with admittedly some surprise, that the above paragraph demonstrates a pretty keen mind at work. A mind that clearly sees more of the corners, light and dark, in human nature than I had thought it would. In retrospect, though, I shouldn’t feel surprised, for it would explain why he is able to so easily put his finger on the the darkest, deepest wounds and weak points in our collective consciousness.

Only by feeling an equal degree of joyous celebration, of humble gratitude in service to others, or any other of the positive expressions of one’s humanity, could one even consider claiming knowledge of the opposite end of the scale. He certainly demonstrates an deep understanding of the duality of the human experience, and from what I understand, writes about it without modern peer. I, however, congratulate him not for that, but for knowing, and attempting to share his understanding of how to keep in touch with the empowering side of one’s own nature…….
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“The “Defense of Marriage Act” before Congress was co-sponsored by the divorced Bob Dole and the divorced House Speaker Newt Gingrich. The bill, if it passes, has been promised to be signed by the renowned skirt-chaser President Bill Clinton.  These men tell us that they support the bill because committed, monogamous same-sex unions are an affront to the sacred institution of heterosexual marriage.  Am I the only one a bit confused here?” — James G. Gilbert, Boston in a Letter to the Editor (Globe?)

The part of this that disturbs me is that it had to have been written abut 20 years ago, during Clinton’s white house occupancy. This means that in twenty years, there has been no resolution of a problem that (apparently) is still of primary concern to the voting public. The quotation could have easily appeared in yesterday’s edition of the Globe, and those who believe that heterosexual marriage should be sacred are still acting as if they are under attack. Bills and lawsuits are still being touted and pursued that try to legislate one group’s morality into law; which one will do so remains unclear, though  it escapes me why that should be true, or even an issue.

I find it difficult to believe that more than one court has not already said to the ignoramuses who are bleating about how married homosexuals will cause their own kids to turn gay, “Would you please just be quiet, take your ignorance and prejudices home to your own little cave, and stay there? Leave everyone else alone, it’s none of your expletive business what they do in their own homes. If you want the government to pass judgment on what happens in YOUR home, too, that can be arranged; the Bill of Rights is not Sacred anymore…. but meantime, you’re being a pain, so shut the f…. up!”….. Boy, wouldn’t that be fun to watch!…….
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Fill your bowl to the brim and it will spill.
Keep sharpening your knife and it will blunt.
Chase after money and security and your heart will never unclench.
Care about people’s approval and you will be their prisoner.
Do your work, then step back.
The only path to serenity.
— Tao Te Ching

Adding to this, or trying to explain it destroys the clarity of the concepts, so I will leave any comments or thoughts as an exercise for the Gentle Reader……
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“I’ll not listen to reason. Reason always means what someone else has to say.” — Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell

I don’t agree at all with this sentiment; it goes against one of my most basic beliefs, if what it says is what I understand it to say, regarding communication and its importance in our relationships with others.  In fact, I had reacted so strongly to reading it that I had written two paragraphs of scathing satire about Mrs. Gaskell, even sinking so low as to mock her name, and make poor jokes about her relations, before I came to my senses, and halted the tirade. I hated to delete it; part of it was some of the funniest stuff I’d done in a while. As it turns out, reading what I’d written after a short session with Google, I was ashamed at myself, both for jumping to conclusions, and mouthing off without thinking of consequences.

You see, as I finished my mini-rant, it occurred to me that I knew nothing about this person; zip, zilch, never heard of her. Boy, am I ignorant, or what? It turns out she was one of the most prolific and successful British authors of the 19th century, during the time of Jane Austen, Charlotte Bronte, along with others of her ilk and gender. Wikipedia tells me she reportedly wrote passionately powerful novels about the tragic suffering in the lives of the poor families living in cities, with which she was well-acquainted, having worked for many years as a nurse in charity and ministerial work with her husband, a Unitarian minister.

These programs ministered to the poor and afflicted of British urban centers, some of the first heavily industrialized cities in Europe. Her books were very popular and successful, both with the public, and with doctors, who benefited from the attention given to the diseases prevalent among poor populations in the urban areas. She is credited with responsibility for inspiring many reforms and changes in the attitude of the entire medical community toward this area of medicine, and the treatment of disease.

Not exactly a good candidate for a sarcastic rant, eh? That will teach me to think before typing, for sure…. it would have been very embarrassing to have published that without researching it; I’d probably have instigated the ire of anyone with a moderate knowledge of English literature in the century before last, and deservedly so…..

Oh, well. Do I get any points for copping to being nearly stupid and unnecessarily cruel? No? Well, that’s okay…. don’t want to reward ineffectively. “Still alive” is enough of a reward after attacks of near stupidity; ‘nearly stupid’ has been known to cause “not still alive”, or “he’s dead, Jim. You get his wallet…” to happen to those who aren’t sufficiently alert to the possibility……
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I’ve done so much, with so little, for so long, that now I can do anything with nothing.

I cannot say that I’ve quite reached this level of expertise, but I can say that the attempt to do so is one of my small set of critical  priorities; doing without has become a way of life. It has its advantages, which are, sadly, amply offset by the disadvantages, making it neither good nor bad, merely survivable. I don’t go out, to eat, or drink, or visit folks; no car and no money to support either activity, as most everyone I know locally is at least a few miles away. Too far for walking anyway, and I ain’t asking for no handouts such as a ride; I don’t bring much to the table for the near future, at least.

I have enough to cover my basic needs for shelter and food (mostly), and a bit left over for phone & internet, to stay sane. That’s it, so I try to stay aware that it is more than half the world has to survive with. Until my Social Security kicks in, this is reality, so I’m just hunkerin’ down & stayin’ alive…. it’s a good thing I enjoy my own company….. cyber-relationships are cool, but not quite the same as one-to-one contact….. once the SS is approved, life will return to a slightly higher standard of living, one that includes food as a regular budget item, not a luxury…… besides, I need to lose at least 20 lbs, just to stay healthy…. if only that goal didn’t require crunchies, of which I am less than fond…..
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I can’t say this has been the easiest Pearl I’ve ever written, but it wasn’t the hardest by a long shot. Still, all things must come to an end; it’s not just smart and healthy, it’s the Law! Until tomorrow, then….y’all take care out there…..


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

gigoid

Dozer

Kowabunga!