For lovers of panache, a film noir…

As I walked to answer the knock at the door, I wondered who could be disturbing the usual quiet of my retreat; my granny unit house isn’t generally reachable from the street by the casual seeker. The door opened to reveal a suit, with some dorky looking white guy about 5’10” filling it up to the point of nearly-bursting buttons, standing, hip-cocked, and holding a clipboard (what else?….), sweating in the 85 degree afternoon sun.

He had a pleasant enough, if a bit vacant, expression, and immediately launched into his obviously memorized by rote routine, “Good afternoon, sir, I am a college student….” I interrupted him to demand, “Who let you in here? How did you find this house?” in my most intimidating voice. If this guy was really a college student selling magazines, he should be easily intimidated, and demanding they stop their spiel always disturbs their timing. Usually…..

This young man, however, had a different reaction…. he smiled, and started to reach into his jacket…. without thought or hesitation, the knife that I keep by the front door was in my hand and at his throat while he was still lifting the hand. I spun him around, knife still in place, and pulled him inside the door, kicking it shut with  my foot. Reaching up, I grabbed his head and rapped it sharply, once, against the door (looks like nice wood, but it’s metal…), and my unwanted guest slipped silently to the floor, out like the proverbial light.

I started to gasp a bit, in reaction to the adrenaline now surging through my bloodstream, but keeping my wits, bent down to frisk my faux collegian. My instincts were rewarded as I pulled out a very lethal-looking Glock 9mm from a shoulder holster, a deadly stiletto from the lining of the coat, and a few other little surprises from his pockets, one of which was an ID card. This surprised me, and worried me as well…. if he is carrying ID, he’s probably from my own government, and I’m now guilty of assaulting an officer of the so-called Law…..

Alright, that’s enough of that…. You can see from the above just where my dreams have been going of late… One might get the impression from this that I don’t trust my government.    You’d be right in that….. The only part of the above that isn’t true is the guy in the suit…. The rest of it is exactly how my place is arranged, and how I have it prepared for unwanted visitors…. Of course, it doesn’t mention the subtly placed web cameras watching the yard, or the little buttons here by my computer, that lead to the small, shaped charges in random spots around the grounds…. or any of the other little surprises that may be encountered if one is an uninvited guest…. I wouldn’t want to scare away any real visitors…. But then, of late, there aren’t any of those anyway, so it’s all moot….

Probably enough fooling around for one morning…. It’s time to get to the Pearl, so I’ll quit screwing about, & bragging about my setup… probably a good idea not to advertise it too widely anyway…. shall we dive for Pearls?….

“Good breeding consists in concealing how much we think of ourselves and how little we think of other persons.” — Mark Twain, “Notebooks”

Sounds as if Sam nailed me again…. Though I make no claims as to the first part of the above statement, I think I’m too-often guilty of the latter. I can’t help it; people just keep on doing really dumb stuff, right in front of me. Not just in front of me, in front of the whole world! Hell, let’s just take a moment, and go over to a news site, and pick out a random headline to demonstrate this point…. be right back….

“UC Berkeley adviser fired after affair”  This is the headline of the first story under the three feature articles on SFGATE, so it is considered to be pretty hot news…. Apparently, a female at UCB doubled the salary of her paramour during their 15 month affair while she worked as an assistant vice chancellor. This is just one example of the chicanery that is typically part of what we see each day, as the human circus performs all around us in way more than just three measly rings. Finding this article took about 30 seconds, but choosing which of the many examples that presented themselves took about five times that long…. I opted to avoid any articles that entailed bloodshed, to respect pre-breakfast sensibilities…

I don’t think I’m especially good compared to most folks; I know exactly what goes on in my head. I know that most folks are just regular folks trying their best to get by without trouble, a commodity life presents all of us with without any help. But there seems to be a lot of folks out there in the world who just don’t have a clue as to what is right and what is wrong. Or, if they do, they don’t seem to care that they consistently choose the wrong, or even admit that they do so.

I don’t get it. It’s like head-banging is becoming a national sport; I wouldn’t be surprised to see a reality game-show where young idiots would sign up to run full tilt into a wall, head first, with no helmet. The winner would be the one who could do it twice…. and he would get $10,000 for his survivors, and free coma-care for what was left of his life…. Nope, wouldn’t be surprised at all, considering some of the game shows I’ve seen, such as the one where they do extremely dangerous stunts for cash prizes…. fucking crazy, is all I can say….

“All men possess in their bodies a poison which acts upon serpents; and the human saliva, it is said, makes them take to flight, as though they had been touched with boiling water. The same substance, it is said, destroys them the moment it enters their throat.” — Pliny the Elder (23-79 AD) — Natural History, Book vii, Sect. 15

Interesting idea from Pliny…. Not having read the entire work listed, I can’t say whether he presents any evidence to support this assertion… I can only say from my own experience that though it may not be true, it is useful as an operating principle, at least in one respect. Though not poisonous to them, I am sure that our odor, and especially that of our saliva, is somewhat repugnant to snakes, if only because it indicates our presence, which is not usually very healthful for them when it occurs; they tend to get bashed with the nearest big stick or rock if they don’t hasten elsewhere….. a fact of life that I am sure gets widely distributed among the snake population….

Thus, even if one is confronted with a large, even poisonous snake, spitting at them first can be an effective defensive maneuver, at least initially, and may surprise the snake as much as he/she surprised you…. It is also good to remember that, as a human, you are not completely without defenses against a snake (such as the aforementioned rock/stick combination), and need not freeze in fear. In truth, with focus and concentration, that movie trick you see where the martial artist hero snatches the snake out of the air, mid-strike, by hand is not all that far-fetched. The human hand is MUCH faster than a snake, even in full strike, when not restricted in its speed by fear.

Mongooses use this kind of speed when they fight snakes (not just cobras, they hate them all….). They are amazing to watch, allowing the snake to strike at them, fading back just a half-inch from the snake’s snout to the end of its length, then smoothly and wickedly fast, swerving around to bite them just behind the head, killing them instantly. In tests, the human hand has been clocked at a speed 6 times faster than that of a snake in full strike…. more than fast enough to catch them, if one can move past the fear…. Pliny may not have been completely correct in his assumptions, but he at least approached the subject objectively, and didn’t let fear affect that study….

“All our knowledge has its origins in our perceptions.” — Leonardo da Vinci

Even when invasive events smash this concept upside their heads, there are people who do not understand this principle of reality. In truth, I would say that very few people at all even think about such concepts as the subtle difference between perception and knowledge, much less use it as a coping tool in their lives. I’m not certain why, though my cynicism could certainly supply some reasonable theories, since, unlike those folks, for me it has long been an obvious signpost that shows the path to successful living.  Knowing the difference can make all the difference, you see….

Knowledge originates in perception, but does not end there, and that is what many do not see. The mere act of perception is only the beginning of what is needed to make right actions arise from right thinking. What we have perceived must be evaluated, for truth, for accuracy, for intent, for its relative importance in many different lights, all before it can be effectively used to create action. Acting only on the perceptions, without evaluation, can be more than just erroneous; it can be deadly.

With this last piece of understanding, it becomes more clear just how the beloved ruling class uses this misunderstanding of perception and knowledge to their advantage… for it is said that, “True power is control of the routes of perception…” (gigoid, 1974) That same ruling class is in full control of the media, and assiduously applies its influence to reduce and/or control the amount and quality of the information available for the general public to perceive.

We only hear what they want us to hear on TV and the radio…. only in the last few years, since the advent of the internet, has their control of this source of data been challenged. Even here, on the information highway, the Powers That Be continue to try to pass laws that will allow them to control what is put out there for publication, because they know they are doomed if they cannot achieve the control over information that they have thus far enjoyed. Only an ignorant public is easily manipulable…. Ffolkes need to remember that all one sees and hears is NOT all there is to see and hear, and to remember to always check out any perceptions you may take in for their relevance and truth…. it is for your own good, believe me….

“It is one of the commonest of mistakes to consider that the limit of our power of perception is also the limit of all there is to perceive.” — C. W. Leadbeater

“Take away the right to say ‘fuck’ and you take away the right to say ‘fuck the government.'” — Lenny Bruce

“Ah, you know the type.  They like to blame it all on the Jews or the Blacks, ’cause if they couldn’t, they’d have to wake up to the fact that life’s one big, scary, glorious, complex and ultimately unfathomable crap shoot — and the only reason THEY can’t seem to keep up is they’re a bunch of misfits and losers.” — A analysis of Neo-Nazis, from “The Badger” comic

I’m using this as a form of a cheat-sheet…. I could rant for days, and not come up with a better way to describe the motivation that drives our beloved ruling class (those lovely political thieves…), the 1%, the clergy and the churches, the bankers and megacorp CEO’s, and all those who choose deliberate ignorance over the pain of original or independent thought. Not only does this save me a rant, it saves you the time and energy to read through it… I should get a medal or something….

But, being the modest, unassuming sort of fellow that I am, I’m just going to leave it at that…. You may consider yourself ranted upon, minus the spew….   🙂

According to Descartes, Rush Limbaugh doesn’t exist. — Smart Bee

…The Universe is thronged with fire and light,
And we but smaller suns, which, skinned, trapped and kept
Enshrined in blood and precious bones, hold back the night.
— Ray Bradbury

Ah, serendipity! I was lamenting the lack of poetry that so far had passed before me this morning in my search for pearls, when this perfect gem from Mr. B popped up, and ended the search. The poem itself is such that my comments won’t add to its beauty, so I shan’t make any other than to say that this is a very nice way to look at our place in the universe, nice being, of course, totally inadequate to express its power… but, nice it is, nonetheless… Enjoy!

Another day, another Pearl… it works for me. This has taken an inordinately long time this morning…. good thing it’s Sunday, and there’s nothing much of importance going on, so all is good….

Oh, and for those bloggers I follow…. I have had some problems accessing sites, not just here on WP, due, I think, to a browser update from Mozilla that isn’t quite up to snuff… beta versions can be that way sometimes… So, please don’t think I haven’t tried to get by to read anyone’s work… I’ve been limited to a few sites that don’t seem to have the difficulty, but I’ll keep trying, and will catch up eventually…. thanks for your patience….

Enough dithering…. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..

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