SPOILER: The following introductory section contains an unusually powerful potential to affect the reader soporifically, without warning; should you find yourself yawning, or your eyelids becoming heavy and hard to blink, go immediately on to the second section, where oxygen will be provided….
Our apologies for any inconvenience this may cause in the consumption of today’s Pearl; it was unavoidable, as the intro was done before its strong, almost narcotic, sleep-inducing qualities were noted and recorded…. Fortunately, it was discovered during the proofing, (when I found myself nodding over the keyboard…) which prompted this warning….
I find, if you don’t hold your breath while reading the intro, and just treat it like the preface of a book you are about to read (which nobody ever does read…. the prefaces, that is….), and go on to the meat of today’s offering…. you can make it through without any difficulty, other than a vague, mild nausea…. Best of luck!….
And, when I woke up…. I looked around, only to find nothing had changed while I slept. More’s the pity…. Of course, I’m speaking only of the situation outside of my own little corner of reality…. In my corner, I have things nicely arranged, just the way I like them, with Patricia nearby, and nobody else (well, other than my children, and the odd old friend or two….) who has any claim on my time, or my attention…. This means that I can spend my time pursuing my own American Dream, which involves books, excellent coffee, the possibility of love, puppies, kittens, cannabinoids, and no bad food…. With the time I have left on this old ball o’mud, life’s too short to put up with anything else….
Anything beyond those are what I consider a bonus, but,those listed are essential to my personal well-being, items I am unwilling to go without for very long before becoming quite irritable, whereupon I generally find someone to sink my teeth into, for sublimation purposes…. It works for me, though I do have to keep a lawyer on retainer to deal with the occasional bout of antagonistic litigation. It also gets a bit expensive having to keep so much material handy for bandaging, and stopping blood flow; and, don’t ASK about the trash bill!….. Do you know what they charge now for hazardous bio-waste?…. It’s outrageous!….
If I haven’t said so before, let me now say, I really like being retired…. I didn’t think I would, but, as things have worked out, it’s a lot more comfortable than I’d thought, if you don’t count the physical issues that arise from getting older. That’s something we all have to deal with anyway, but, not all of us manage to arrange matters so that we aren’t struggling with poverty when we stop working….
Not having a retirement account is actually a scary, sad idea to consider, as I know several people my age who DON’T have a solid retirement set up, and must continue working in order to live; I was almost caught without a retirement in place, so I know the panicky feeling that comes from not knowing if you will be able to retire, with enough to live on comfortably, or have to keep plugging away at a job in order to eat, and sleep indoors…. As I approached my 55th birthday, I was in that boat; no job, and not enough time in to keep my retirement active with the State, so I was looking at NOT having anything in place when I reached the age to retire….
I guess I’m winding around this issue like this to get to the point where I can say this: I’m a lucky guy…. I managed to get my job with the State back, and reinstated my accumulated time, which reinstated my retirement eligibility, and left me in the position in which I find myself now…. which is a far better position than the majority of the world’s population can look forward to…. I have enough income to live in a warm, dry house, eat well, stay clothed, and have enough left for entertainment and/or travel, if I’m frugal enough to save up…. So, I really have little about which to complain, other than my physical issues, which all of us must bear….
As a man who was raised to be compassionate, and who has learned over the years that service to others is a requirement of maintaining one’s self-respect and honor, I feel like I should give back to society what I can, sharing my knowledge and expertise…. In my lifetime, I’ve learned a lot, and the only way now I have to share what I know is to write…. My physical condition is such that giving of my practical experience, in cooking, organizing, or other skills that are useful, has been curtailed; I can’t work in the kitchen anymore, nor do much that requires standing or sitting for long periods…. So, volunteering at the local senior center, as I’d planned to do, is not an option any longer….
So, I write…. I try to write about subjects that will help us all to survive the upcoming shit-storm…..You know, that impending massive planetary environmental crisis so ignorantly created by our Beloved Ruling Class, in their patently insane search for power and control over others? Yeah, that one…. It ain’t much, but, it’s what I’ve got, so, I’ll keep doing it as long as I can, if only to amuse myself…. If I can amuse someone else in the process, so much the better….
Shall we Pearl?…. With such a mundane, elementally, if elegantly boring intro, I think we need a two-fer to start…..
“He is able who thinks he is able.” — Buddha
“If the Bible proves that God exists then comic books prove the existence of Superman.” — Smart Bee, demonstrating perfectly sound logic
Originally, I had intended to put a rant in this section…. I even had one started, dealing with a plague our society has endured since the beginning of time, but, writing that stiff, boring introduction has put me into a semi-deep depression, for some idiotic reason that my subconscious thinks will be more fun if it hides it from me….
In short, I’ve just been struck by a chemical imbalance in my brain that has created a miasma of karmic blueness, which surrounds my heart and soul, bypassing the brain altogether to make me feel as if the world is covered all in cotton, and nothing feels right…. and I don’t know WHY! It’s just as if a bunch of dementors had been sent to harass me by some perverse, antagonistic Ministry of Magic official…. Really a pisser, actually….
Ah well, it’s fortunate for us I have the perfect solution to this sort of marginally delusional, certainly self-induced emotional abuse…. It’s called an old-school pearl, sans any parameters beyond what pleases the inner eye, dreaming without focus, of peace, and illogical hope for our future…. In other words, potluck…. Enjoy! I intend to… In fact, I may even leave a comment or two, just to show y’all how MUCH I enjoyed it….
“He who receives a good turn should never forget it; he who does one should never remember it.” — Charon
(An obvious corollary to the Golden Rule, and an attitude one could only wish was more common in modern society….)
“It belongs to human nature to hate those you have injured.” — Tacitus (54-119 AD) — Agricola, 42
(Ahem!…. Well!…. I do declare, is it a bit warm in here?…. This certainly goes a long way toward explaining the reason why our Beloved Ruling Class expresses so much hatred and disdain for those who elect them…. as well as how the shadowy corporate slave masters can justify to themselves their insane obsession with money, and power over others….)
“The discipline of desire is the background of character.” — John Locke
“Just remember, when you’re over the hill, you begin to pick up speed.” — Charles Schulz
“One’s friends are that part of the human race with which one can be human.” — George Santayana
(No comments from me could possibly add anything to the last three pearls….. Let’s see if SB can finish this off with the same sort of style and grace….)
POLITICS, n. “A strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles. The conduct of public affairs for private advantage.” — Ambrose Bierce, The Devil’s Dictionary
“Thou shalt not get caught.” — The Eleventh Commandment
Hmm…. well, perhaps the ending didn’t quite live up to the rest of it…. But, when looked at in a certain light, one can see how that may well just be the best description of how human life stumbles along the way it does…. Then again, maybe not…. At this point, all of that is moot, and we are now free to go enjoy a poem…. Plus, the quicker we get out of this section, the faster it will fade into memory, yes?….
I don’t know this poet, having never seen his work before…. though for some reason, this poem sounds familiar…. In any case, it’s good, if a bit obscure as to what it wants from the reader; I found it hard to connect to the emotions that so obviously were part of the shock of the ending. Perhaps that’s a sign of a good poem; it made me think about my own reaction to what it had to say….
Whenever Richard Cory went down town,
We people on the pavement looked at him:
He was a gentleman from sole to crown,
Clean favored, and imperially slim.
And he was always quietly arrayed,
And he was always human when he talked;
But still he fluttered pulses when he said,
‘Good-morning,’ and he glittered when he walked.
And he was rich – yes, richer than a king –
And admirably schooled in every grace:
In fine, we thought that he was everything
To make us wish that we were in his place.
So on we worked, and waited for the light,
And went without the meat, and cursed the bread;
And Richard Cory, one calm summer night,
Went home and put a bullet through his head.
~~ Edwin Arlington Robinson ~~
As a reward for hanging in there long enough to get this far, I’m not going to rant at all today…. Instead, here’s another fresh old-school pearl…. Let’s see if Smart Bee can come up with anything to lighten my depression, and give y’all a chuckle or two with your morning coffee, tea, or beverage of choice…. Myself, I advise NOT having any morning conversations with either of my old friends, John Daniels, or James Beam…. Nice fellows, but, as breakfast companions, they tend to eliminate any prospect of accomplishing anything worthwhile afterward, for most of the rest of the day, after which, there remains the altogether unpleasant consequences to suffer through, as one recovers from the usual vicious hangover that comes with such foolishness…
As is apparent, I’ve been there, done that, and have no wish to go back, much as I love my old friends…. I’ll confine myself to shorter, more manageable conversations with them late at night, or before dinner, and leave it at that…. In the meantime, I got completely side-tracked…. Let’s see how amusing Smart Bee can be, shall we?….
“If at first you don’t succeed, you’re doing about average.” — Leonard Levinson
— Bother! said Pooh, as his ship failed to jump to light speed.
A mighty creature is the germ,
Though smaller than the pachyderm.
His customary dwelling place
Is deep within the human race.
His childish pride he often pleases
By giving people strange diseases.
Do you, my poppet, feel infirm?
You probably contain a germ.
— Odgen Nash (1902-1971)
“Believing ourselves to be possessors of absolute truth degrades us: we regard every person whose way of thinking is different from ours as a monster and a threat and by so doing turn our own selves into monsters and threats to our fellows.” — Octavio Paz
(How did that slip in there?…. Hmm, sorry, it’s not remotely funny….. It’s also too good to toss away; such insight is rare…. Oh well, just imagine it’s funny, and go on…. I’ll make it right with the gods of consistency….)
“Sits he on ever so high a throne, a man still sits on his bottom.” — Smart Bee
(That’s better…. since we aren’t counting the fourth pearl, we’ll go with a three-fer to finish this off nice and balanced-like, just like the professionals do….)
“I spent 3 weeks childproofing my home. They still get in.” — Smart Bee
“It has been determined that most teenage girls lose their virginity during the summer months. This stands to reason, since congress is recessed at that time.” — Smart Ass Bee
“HELLO, everybody, I’m a HUMAN!!” — Zippy the Pinhead
(It appears that balance was not going to be an element of note in today’s process…. but, I’m okay with that, especially if you consider the last line as the underlying battle cry for today’s effort…. )
I swear, pulling out a coherent thought today has been like trying to pull a Tea Partier’s head out of his ass…. It’s hard work, and ultimately useless, in terms of improving his chances of reaching average intelligence; in other words, there’s no hope of making them smarter, so, they’re usually better off leaving it there… I figure if somebody is a registered Tea Partier, it’s a pretty sure sign they already lost the evolutionary lottery…. It’s why I’m usually nice to them; they’re to be pitied more than reviled, as being too naive to ever really have stood a chance to learn enough to make themselves anything than the malleable mind-slaves of the BRC they are…..
There, now I’ve ranted…. Are you happy? Good. Me too, and I know why both of us have reason to be so giddy…. We’re done here, and we can afford to let go of our death grip on sanity long enough to relax for a while…. Until tomorrow, ffolkes….
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,
I just sits.
gigoid the dubious