Intrepid persistence….

Ffolkes,

“The greatest happiness you can have
is knowing that
you do not necessarily require happiness.”

~~ William Saroyan ~~

Ireland 089

Irish Buskers in the Spanish Arch, Galway…

Hajime…. In the recent past, I’ve been unable to write, thanks, mostly, to the debilitating heat we’ve been stifled by for the last week, beaten down into semi-conscious, lethargic creatures, able only to sweat and pant. It finally broke last night, & the next week promises to be some nice weather, relatively speaking. One can only heave a sigh of relief, & get on with life, trying to catch up to all we’ve left undone in our stupor.

For today’s offering, I’ve managed to piece together some decent material, with some fine old music to read by, and a most excellent group of pearls to finish things off. All in all, despite the continuing lack of ranting (which still strikes me as too futile to spend any time on….), it’s not bad, offering, like cats, no corners to the winds of fate. Given my recent dearth of creativity, I can only applaud the fact it got done, without any foolish forays into predicting its quality. In fact, I’ll say, simply, what you see is what you get, & leave it at that, as one cannot be any more precise without the risk of uttering falsehoods. Wouldn’t want any of that, now, would we? No, of course we wouldn’t….

What I can do is show a bit of sense, as well as courtesy, by bringing this ‘sort of an intro’ to a rapid close, so we can get on with the task at hand. I’ll use one of my oldest techniques, which I used to call ‘old number four’, but, now, I just call it Harold. Don’t ask, just take it & run for the border. That’s what I’m gonna do; watch….

Shall we Pearl?….

“In the beginning, God created the Earth
and he said, “Let there be mud.”
And there was mud.
And God said, “Let Us make living creatures out of mud,
so the mud can see what we have done.”
And God created every living creature that now moveth,
and one was man.
Mud-as-man alone could speak.
“What is the purpose of all this?” man asked politely.
“Everything must have a purpose?” asked God.
“Certainly,” said man.
“Then I leave it to you to think of one for all of this,” said God.
And He went away.”

~~ Kurt Vonnegut, Between Time and Timbuktu” ~~

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jackson browne

Jackson Browne

Image from the HoustonPress.com via Google Images

While cruising You Tube for music, I found some videos & audio files from this artist, one I’ve enjoyed for more years than I can count. Well, not really; it’s been close to fifty years, as he became prominent when I was in college, in 1968. I, among others, consider him one of the most underrated songwriters in the business, and a great live performer. Yes, it’s another blast from the past; when it’s this good, who cares?…. Enjoy!….

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

Jackson Brown
Running on Empty

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Comedy_Tragedy

Augmentation: Inner Aye

Distant, peals of thunder, vividly.
Closer, a patter of rain, falling gravidly.
Between the light and the darkness of fear
find merely the remnants of one lonely tear.

Do not hate us, though we have not sinned;
eager for courage, upon whom all hope is pinned.
Tales of insolence, hatred, or fallen virtue
fill us up, not down, in such pristine foreign venue.

Capable hands severed, able hands tied;
the future is angry, all but now denied.
Multiple times, warnings sounded across the pale
nobody heard, nobody came to tell the tale.

Gifted by time, salience fails in epic rhyme;
watchmakers watching, each a separate crime.
Logical solutions refuse to emulsify
forever pretending to cruelly crucify.

Blood will fly alongside pertinent composure,
never seeking, never finding tea, or closure.
Falsely laid trails on mountains of gold
imply no happy endings, no fortunes told.

Ages past have no time for repetition;
further chances only lead to perdition.
Destiny feels a shameful portion of guilt,
for a thousand sand castles, never built.

~~ gigoid ~~

3/2/2016

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pearls_3

Naked Pearls

True keys to success in Life….

*******

“Do not eat your heart.”

~~ Pythagoras ~~

*******

“A warm smile is the universal language of kindness.”

~~ William Arthur Ward ~~

*******

“If you can’t say somethin’ nice, don’t say nothin’ at all.”

~~ Thumper (1942) ~~

*******

“Let him that would move the world, first move himself.”

~~ Socrates ~~

*******

“Practice random beauty and senseless acts of love.”

~~ Ancient Hippie proverb ~~

*******

“If the world seems cold to you, kindle fires to warm it.”

~~ Lucy Larcom ~~

*******

“Here is the test
to find whether your mission on Earth is finished:
if you’re alive, it isn’t.”

~~ Richard Bach ~~

*******

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

Though I can’t say it’s the best Pearl ever, I can say, it’s done, which relegates it to the category we love the most, to wit, ‘ready to post’…. Let’s do that, before I lose my nerve, or, regain my senses. I’m off to see the lizard; y’all are, as usual, on your own from this point. Y’all stay strange out there; we does our best to provide y’all with an example, and then hope for the best. See ya, probably sooner than you think….

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

Dozer

À bientôt, mon cherí….


		
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‘Til the last strawberry jams….

Ffolkes,

“In those whom I like, I can find no common denominator;
in those whom I love I can: they all make me laugh.”

~~ W. H. Auden ~~

PK Leelu 2

“There’s shredding to be done.”

Leelu in full PK Mode, no flash


Hajime…. I was up rather late, for me, reading and re-blogging the post you saw if you stopped by yesterday, or, today before posting this Pearl. Since I was up late, I naturally over-slept my usual time to arise, thus throwing my schedule, and, Leelu’s morning time completely off the track. I’ve given her some time, to settle her down from the change, and she’s watching the traffic through her window seat, monitoring all the threats she perceives, & keeping watch while I type.

Routine thus re-established, at least, in her mind, I now sit to finish today’s mess…. To keep the mess from growing too much too fast, I’ll make this another short intro, with no nonsense beyond what we’ve already been subjected to, thus, hopefully, gaining back a few of the points we lost in over-sleeping…. Or, maybe it’s the other way around. I don’t know right now, too damn fuzzy, still. I’m going to grab one of the Tardis toys to get us going, & leave the rest to chance…. In fact, let’s do that now, ‘kay? Okay!…..

Shall we Pearl?….

“If I do not do it now, when shall I do it?”

~~ Dogen Zenji ~~


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Dont keep calm

    Yesterday, a blog I follow posted a rather nice poem the author wrote, as an inspirational message for a friend, whose relative had been diagnosed with cancer. It made me think, naturally, of my own father, and brother. My father died of the disease in 1985; my brother is currently about a month from completing a cure, comprised solely of the consumption of essential oils of cannabis. He was diagnosed with one of the most virulent forms, lymphatic cancer, but, the steady diet of natural substances is working as advertised…. though not by anyone in the broken medical model we have available to the general public…. or, our own government, which has known of this cure since 1974.

Watch the video; do your own research. Watch any of the thousands of videos from people who have cured themselves. Then, spread the word, and watch the world turn to anarchy for a time, until those who have caused over 100 million unnecessary deaths worldwide, all for the sake of the trillions of dollars they have made off the people’s misery, have all been torn to shreds by angry mobs of their relatives and loved ones, who have realized just how badly, and how long they have been listening to lies…. Or, keep it to yourself, and watch people die for no reason…. Up to you, as always….


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

Anonymous
Cannabis cures cancer…

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le penseur-rodin

    The fresh piece upon which I’m working isn’t done, so, here is an odd, but, ultimately pretty good discussion from early days on WP, about two months after I began posting here…. I hope you enjoy it; I was still finding my rhythm, but, it shows promise of things to come…. Enjoy, if you please….

From 11/7/2011:

Ffolkes,

Skyclad before the pale, he sits to write his way into the day……and in an unprecedented move, he has brought his brain with him!…..

“In a real dark night of the soul
it is always three o’clock in the morning.”

~~ F. Scott Fitzgerald ~~


Have the claws of depression ever set themselves in your flesh, slicing their way into your conscious mind to fill it with diffuse anxiety and deep despair? Have you sat, alone in a dark room, and thought of all that you have lost? Does the sunshine make you angry for being so cheerful? When depression rears its ugly head and takes over the soul, the world loses all its color and warmth; everything you see is grey and shadowed, and somehow menacing. Being alone becomes a penance, a sentence for violations of natural law, and sleep is the only surcease from the crushing weight that weighs down the mind, and soul. All the goodness in the world seems far away, and unattainable by any effort we can make. Even hope becomes uncomfortable, because of the fear it will turn out to be false. Thoughts and feelings feel out of control, and the simplest tasks can become a challenge to your reduced level of functioning. Believe me when I say, being depressed is no picnic, and you still get the ants……

Having been a psychiatric technician for so long, I know the effects of depression very well, from both sides of the therapeutic relationship, having treated many depressed individuals, and having suffered its claws myself due to PTSD. It is a difficult condition to treat, from a therapist’s viewpoint, as it is difficult to help someone find the light when they want to sit in the dark, and close their eyes against the light. And from the other side, the negative filter through which a depressed individual views the world denies any possibility of change.

For  reasons which are still unclear, a person who becomes depressed is actually more comfortable in that state than they are when they are not influenced by its debilitating symptoms. And from having experienced it myself, I can tell you without hesitation that it is insidiously powerful, and incredibly hard to set aside in order to get back to a more stable mental state, one in which the world again becomes beautiful, the spirit once again takes flight, and life regains its attraction once more…….

“The sense of death is most in apprehension;
And the poor beetle, that we tread upon,
In corporal sufferance finds a pang as great
As when a giant dies.”

~~ William Shakespeare, Measure for Measure, Act iii, Sc. 1 ~~


I usually steer clear of using Shakespeare, as his work has been over-used, and IMHO is over-rated anyway. He did write a lot of beautiful passages, and should be considered as a master of the sonnet as well as the play. But I like this one, both for the creative beauty of his phrasing and structure, and for the idea behind it, which I see as a clear observation of the interconnectedness of all life-forms. We’re born, we live, and we die, thus completing the cycle of existence as per the natural laws of this universe (or at least as far as we know those laws…..). And every other creature on this planet goes through the same cycle of birth, life, death, birth, life, death, etc…, until one can only conclude that we must be alike in other ways as well, and are thereby connected in some fashion, both to the universe, and to each other.

This connection puts us all on the same level, at least in the eyes of the universe; no form of life escapes death. We humans, though intelligent, curious, and supremely adaptive to new environments, have no advantage over the tiniest creature on Earth, for we all will face our mortality in the end. Thus our sense of entitlement, of being the top of the food chain, is not justified, for we have no more power over death than the smallest, weakest life form in our world. Species discrimination based on intelligence is foolish; we must come to terms with our own mortality and accept our position in the universe, not above other forms of life, but shoulder to shoulder. We may as well, because we’re going to die anyway; it’s best to try to approach it with some dignity based on fact, rather than unjustified delusion…..

“If you can’t say somethin’ nice, don’t say nothin’ at all.”

~~ Thumper (1942) ~~


Bill Russell, the former professional basketball player, is considered by most fans to be the best defensive player ever to play the game. He played the game with studied intensity, and with complete dignity, approaching the contests with the same attitude he approached life. He was a proponent of the above attitude, one we all learned as a child, watching Bambi and Thumper inflict their terminal cuteness on unsuspecting children in a theater near you. And, as far as it goes, it is a good piece of advice, well worth considering, and useful in teaching manners. But, as with any childish conclusion, it doesn’t go quite far enough. But Bill said this, “One should play the game as a gentleman, always. But, there are times when an elbow to the chops is the only way to make a point.” (My apologies to Bill, as the quote is a paraphrase, the original being unavailable to check for accuracy; the point it makes is intact)

Yes, being nice to each other is the best way to approach living with others; not speaking never got anyone into trouble over what they said.  But the rules for behavior amongst ourselves need to be very flexible, and subject to revision moment by moment. There are too many facets to the human mind to ever consider limiting one’s choices of how to react to any particular situation. This is reinforced by the nature of reality, i.e. constant unpredictable changes are normal, so once again, limiting how we choose to act is an inappropriate response, and doomed to failure. As a human, we need to embrace that part of us that is flexible, and creative, in order to have the best chance of dealing with reality while still staying sane……

Speaking of sanity, keeping mine is going to require some work today, so I’ll be off now to pursue other activities, reluctantly. I will leave you with the following thoughts…..

“All men are poets at heart”

~~ Ralph Waldo Emerson ~~

*******

“All poets are mad”

~~ Robert Burton ~~

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Comedy_Tragedy

    Someday, Leelu and I will be going to Ireland together, to spend quite a bit of time exploring the land, the people, and the culture…. She, no doubt, will be satisfied to be able to explore the land part, and, a few people…. This poem, written before I had ever been there, tells why I’m returning, in large part…. I hope you enjoy it….

Days and Nights of Eire

Comforting, a dream creeps oft into my mind
On the elven hills of Eire lives the vision I find.
Elegant, gracious, everlastingly draped in beauty
Just payment of simple homage lives as joyous duty.

Fairies and druids walk abroad in ghostly parade
Gracing each hearth with its own welcoming shade.
Castles and heroes yet live in tale and song
Proving love for the land in each heart strong.

From cold of winter into glorious young spring
Brown, and gray, to emerald green songs to sing
Soft rains always follow winter’s great tempest
Eire dons its emerald coat from east to west.

Old and strong, connections call out in dreams
Nothing that was known remains as it seems.
Immersion in ancient runes and battle hymns
Offering sanity in place of grievous whims.

Time and place can tell a much different tale
Judgment should never be a final sale.
Yet something solid and real calls me to go see
Where dreams of loving beauty may actually be….

~~ gigoid ~~

11/3/2012


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pearls_3

Classic 7-star Pearl

Life at Large

*******

“A man may love a paradox
without either losing his wit or his honesty.”

~~ Emerson ~~

*******

“Genius is nothing more than childhood,
recaptured at will.”

~~ Charles Baudelaire ~~

*******

“I am one, my liege,
Whom the vile blows and buffets of the world
Have so incensed that I am reckless what
I do to spite the world.”

~~ William Shakespeare, Macbeth. Act iii, Sc. 1 ~~

*******

“Curiosity will conquer fear even more than bravery will.”

~~ James Stephens ~~

*******

There is no heroic poem in the world but is at bottom a biography,
the life of a man; also it may be said, there is no life of a man,
faithfully recorded, but is a heroic poem of its sort, rhymed or unrhymed.

~~ Thomas Carlyle ~~

~~ Sir Walter Scott, London and Westminster Review, 1838 ~~

*******

“The want of goods is easily repaired,
but the poverty of the soul is irreparable.”

~~ Michel de Montaigne ~~

*******

“A man cannot speak but he judges himself
…no man thoroughly understands a truth
until he has contended against it.”

~~ Emerson ~~


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Well, it’s done, which pleases Leelu, if nobody else, but for me. I’m glad, too, because it’s a busy day ’round these parts, with stuff to do out in the BBR that can’t be put off…. On that cryptic, but, non-mysterious note, I’ll bid thee adieu, until I can pull it together enough to do this again…. Odds are, that will be tomorrow, unless something drastic takes place to prevent it…. Not bloody likely…..

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

Kowabunga!


À bientôt, mon cherí….


Elements of improbable style…..

Ffolkes,
Unknown random thoughts awoke me early today, and I have yet to pin them down sufficiently to see just why it was so bloody important for me to be up just now (0645…. that’s AM, in case the military time doesn’t compute….). I can’t see anything particularly in need of my attention, and I can’t believe my head got me up just to witness the very short power outage at 0642, which lasted all the way until 0643….. my assistance was not necessary, other than to re-program a couple of clocks, which could have been done later.

Considering my retired state, and the fact that I don’t HAVE to get up at all, should I so wish, whatever reason I’ve been summoned awake at this hour is insulting, not to say a bit tiring….. and if it was merely to set the clocks, then I need to have a serious discussion with my unconscious mind; it’s getting a bit out of whack with reality, and what is important.  But, hey, I’m up, so I may as well begin the Beguine…. so to speak. (And, boy, did I just date myself there!…..) (Of course, I MAY be the only one left alive who knows the song, so…. I might be safe….)

Much of today’s Pearl was written last night, as Smart Bee presented me at that time with a plethora of quotes with which to work. In addition to the fine group of them that centered on my usual topics, I also found this one, which relates to a post I made some weeks ago; that post, it turns out, was a pivotal post, as it seems to somehow have attracted a large number of new readers to my blog, many of which have begun to follow it, to my delight and surprise.

That post, the title of which escapes me (as they all do, since I don’t bother to make them logical, or indicative of content….) spoke in the intro section about fish sauce, and its importance in society….. That post has become the most widely read post I ever wrote, with well over 30 Likes, and a number of comments….. Fish sauce struck a chord, somehow, with a LOT of people, it seems…. Any who, the following may shed light on just why it turned out to be so popular…..

“SAUCE, n.  The one infallible sign of civilization and enlightenment. A people with no sauces has one thousand vices; a people with one sauce has only nine hundred and ninety-nine.  For every sauce invented and accepted a vice is renounced and forgiven.” — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

I find this to be somewhat comforting, all in all, as it lends to the concept of civilization a somewhat elegant veneer. Little did I, or any other historian or scholar, for that matter, realize just how intrinsic to the inner nature of society Sauces really are…. I do know that the world would be a darker, sadder place without gravy, especially Country Gravy, and who can deny the socially redeeming value of a good Hollandaise? Then, of course, there is fish sauce, without which our society would never have arisen, lifted up from the culture of the caves to assume the grandeur of what it is now. We owe a lot to Sauces, and fish sauce is one of the grandest sauces ever conceived. I don’t know about y’all, but a fresh fish sauce just makes my toes curl in anticipation…. YUM!

Okay, now that is over, my medication is starting to take effect, so fish sauce stories will soon become impossible to write, much less explain later to the authorities…. It must be time to put all this aside, and get on with the scheduled program…. Shall we Pearl?…..
__________________________________

While searching for pearls for this morning, (as noted above, last evening would be more accurate…..) it seems as if Smart Bee wants me to take a few shots again at the political scene here in America…. almost all of what is coming up is pointed in that direction, and who am I to disparage Smart Bee?….. So, here are some pearls, some from political figures, some from philosophers, some from talking animals, and some from screenwriters…. maybe some others, too…. My comments will appear between pearls, to provide some direction….. if it can be called such….

Nick: “There are lots of things worse than movies: politicians, wars, forest fires, famine, plague, sickness, pain, warts, politicians…”
Jack: “You already mentioned them.”
Nick: “I know I did. They are twice as bad as anything else.”

— The Last Action Hero

Years ago fairy tales all began with “Once upon a time…”, now we know they all begin with, “If I am elected…” — Carolyn Warner

These two pearls are such that just about every American can identify with, and that is just sad. Nobody in this country will argue with either of the above opinions, as expressed, because they know there is just too much evidence proving them to be true. Deciding for whom to vote is no longer a matter of examining and comparing the candidates’ positions on various issues, but rather a matter of choosing the lesser of two evils. And, as Jerry Garcia once pointed out, “The lesser of two evils is still evil….”  We will know that things are changing if ever someone hears this kind of joke, and objects….

“I have never been hurt by anything I didn’t say.” — Calvin Coolidge

It is really too bad that more politicians don’t take what Calvin said to heart. In fact, it seems that Mr. Romney has not only NOT listened to this advice, but has actually gone in the other direction; just about every time he opens his mouth to speak, he says something that he later regrets. This is not merely my opinion…. just look at the news every day, and you will find yet another example of how poorly qualified he is to speak in public.

“Ah say, son, you’re about as sharp as a bowlin’ ball.” — Foghorn Leghorn

The saddest and most disheartening part of it is two-fold; one, in his bowling ball state, he believes that, merely because he wants to be President, he should be allowed to be President…..

“Faith:  not wanting to know what is true.” — Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (1844-1900)

Second, there are millions of IDIOTS, wallowing in their faith, who actually listen to him, and nod their doltish heads in agreement as he spouts off again…. They do this without ever pausing to consider whether or not what he says is true, because he has appealed to their basic fears, their bigotry and racism. It’s quite pathetic, when viewed dispassionately…. and what is true gets lost in the shuffle…

“Trees cause more pollution than automobiles do.” — President Ronald Reagan

“Poor dear, there’s nothing between his ears.” — Margaret Thatcher, — about Ronald Reagan, in the 6/2/88 issue of The New York Times

But, the idiocy we see in Romney’s acolytes is actually comprehensible when one considers that these are the same fools who thought Reagan was a saint, when in actuality, as the above statement shows, he was not only a fool, but a vicious, narcissistic fool, who didn’t care at all that what he said was absolutely false, as long as it served his purpose. To make such an ignorant statement as the above shows me not only that he hates Americans, but has no respect for them, or for their innate intelligence…. not to mention his cluelessness re: his own lack of IQ points….

“If you can’t say somethin’ nice, don’t say nothin’ at all.” — Thumper (1942)

Ronnie, and now, Mitt the Twitt, will never understand what Thumper said; they probably think that there is nothing to learn from a cartoon rabbit. While Thumper’s mom obviously has a compassionate nature, and some common sense, these men simply cannot comprehend how a metaphor can apply to them. Of course, I’m fairly certain that neither Romney, nor Reagan, could have defined the word “metaphor”, much less understand how it might apply to them. They just don’t care enough about anyone else for that kind of insight to ever occur in their insulated little world of delusion….

“No man’s life, liberty, or property is safe while the Legislature is in  session.” — Lysander Spooner

Here is another pearl whose very existence is telling. The very fact that someone can say this at all implies that it is a foregone conclusion, that it is such a truism that there is no argument whenever such criticisms are leveled. Everyone knows about this, but, like the weather, nobody ever does anything about it…..

“Irreverence is the champion of liberty and its one sure defense.” — Mark Twain (1835-1910), Notebook, 1888

Thus, the final line explains the process of creating Pearls of Virtual Wisdom; they are my inadequate but sincere attempt to defend the liberties that are threatened by these political assholes who want to get rid of the basic rights our forefathers procured for us. If I can make one person laugh, or stop to consider what I’ve said, then I’ve achieved my basic purpose…. which is more than can be said for many of my undertakings. I can only hope that by doing so, I can, in some small way, contribute to the dispersal of the truth about the congenital liars and thieves who are currently trying to usurp this country, and send us back to the dark ages….. And we all know who is behind them, don’t we?…..

:Corporation: An ingenious device for obtaining individual profit without individual responsibility.” — Ambrose Bierce: “The Devil’s Dictionary”
__________________________________

I’ve sat and stared at the screen for about a half-hour or so now, and nothing seems to be gelling, at least, not into anything remotely resembling poetry…. SIGH…. I suppose this means we’ll have to settle for something classic this morning….. such a burden!…..  🙂  Ah yes…. after so much reality, a bit of fantasy, from one of the Romantics….

Faery Songs

I.
Shed no tear! oh, shed no tear!
The flower will bloom another year.
Weep no more! oh, weep no more!
Young buds sleep in the root’s white core.
Dry your eyes! oh, dry your eyes!
For I was taught in Paradise
To ease my breast of melodies,–
Shed no tear.

Overhead! look overhead!
‘Mong the blossoms white and red–
Look up, look up! I flutter now
On this fresh pomegranate bough.
See me! ’tis this silvery bill
Ever cures the good man’s ill.
Shed no tear! oh, shed no tear!
The flower will bloom another year.
Adieu, adieu — I fly — adieu!
I vanish in the heaven’s blue,–
Adieu, adieu!

II.
Ah! woe is me! poor silver-wing!
That I must chant thy lady’s dirge,
And death to this fair haunt of spring,
Of melody, and streams of flowery verge,–
Poor silver-wing! ah! woe is me!
That I must see
These blossoms snow upon thy lady’s pall!
Go, pretty page! and in her ear
Whisper that the hour is near!
Softly tell her not to fear
Such calm favonian burial!
Go, pretty page! and soothly tell,–
The blossoms hang by a melting spell,
And fall they must, ere a star wink thrice
Upon her closed eyes,
That now in vain are weeping their last tears,
At sweet life leaving, and these arbours green,–
Rich dowry from the Spirit of the Spheres,
Alas! poor Queen!

John Keats
__________________________________

Since I used an old school pearl format above to take some shots at the political spectrum, I thought this would be a good spot for a bit of the same sport with my other favorite whipping boy…. religion, and the folks who like to fiddle around with it….. This time, I’ll leave the pearls to their own devices, and allow your minds to meander among them as you would, picking out the choicest pieces for perusal…. Enjoy!…

“You believe God created you in one day? Yeah, looks like a rush job…” — Smart Bee

“Instead of striving to be like Jesus most Christians would rather presume that Jesus was just like them.” — Callan Williams

Instead of being born again, why not just grow up? — Smart Bee

Born again? No thanks, I was born right the first time…. — Bumper Snicker

Born again? Mom said, NO WAY!…. — Smart Bee

“One Galileo in two thousand years is enough.” — Pope Pius XII
(Shows how brave they are, eh? And how worried about people who can actually think….)

God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM. — Exodus 3:14
(So…. God is Popeye…. who knew?….)

That is most likely enough for one day. I imagine pearls such as this one tend to drag my karmic burden a little further into the gutter, but, I can’t resist….. We, as humans, have a lot of payback coming when it comes to religion, and all the shit it has heaped on us humans in the last 5000 years….. I’m just getting some of mine back early, that’s all….
__________________________________

I’ll take it. Sometimes, the best policy is to just take the money and run. Since I know for a fact that no money will be changing hands today, I’m proceeding directly to the running part…. I’ve always found myself to be a more difficult target when I’m running….  I do hope you’ve enjoyed today’s efforts; I’d be crushed if you didn’t…. well, sort of crushed….. Any who, y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


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

gigoid

Dozer

Kowabunga!

A twig of myrrh, a rasher of bacon, and a swift boat….

Ffolkes,
The winds of fate are blowing, stirring our nascent memories of future pasts, pregnant with the possibility only the future can know. But mostly, we ignore it, in the face of what most concerns us at the time; car payments, taxes, doctor bills, all take precedence over what might be, or what could be. Funny, isn’t it? All our lives we make the same choices, never realizing that choosing to defy fate, or even enthusiastically embracing it, are both better options for us than ignoring it can ever be. Only embracing our fate, or standing up to it, no matter how frightening, can show us the path leading out of the mundane existence to which our misguided choices have led us, and back into a world filled with possibilities, and promise.

With that little nugget out instead of in, we may proceed to the next order of business on the agenda. Fortunately, I make the agenda, so let’s see what’s there for us today….. oh, look! Here is a nice list; I must have written it down last night while I was dreaming….

1) Answer knock on door; accept $25 million check for lottery win…

2) Take call from magazine editor who wants to pay me for Pearling; verify bank deposit of $5 million signing bonus….

3) Attend White House ceremony awarding me Citizen’s Medal of Honor, for my solution to the problem of world peace (which was signed into law at the world court day before yesterday. The necks of all the world leaders have all been fitted with their explosive collars, and the controls given to children all over the globe; peace now reigns, a bit nervously on the part of the leaders, I’d say….), and

4) Take a nap…..

hmmm, sounds like a solid plan to me….. until the knock on the door interrupts us, let us Pearl….
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“We cannot be more sensitive to pleasure without being more sensitive to pain.” — Alan Watts

Hence, ye profane! I hate ye all,
Both the great vulgar and the small.
— Abraham Cowley (1618-1667) — Horace, Book iii, Ode 1

A plague is loose upon our houses, an unseen and unwanted scourge of pandemic disease, and nothing is being done about it, at all, at all, except by its victims……

In today’s society, there exist many difficult issues and problems that affect all the diverse segments of our culture, not all of which are acknowledged. One of the most perniciously insidious of these hidden and/or ignored issues is that of the deeply offensive existence of the illegal, and in some places, legal sex trade, possibly the worst plague that has ever afflicted our race, one which has, sadly, been present for untold centuries, sucking away at the health, morality, and vitality of society with impunity.

The abduction and slavery of women, girls, and even boys in some cases, condemning them to a life of sexual bondage, is being perpetrated on a daily basis, in every culture in the world, organized by, operated by, and  in the process, making rich, the evil, sociopathic, misogynistic so-called men  whose self-hatred and ignorance is acted out upon unsuspecting, vulnerable women and children, robbing them of their very humanity, and leaving all of them severely damaged, emotionally, physically, and behaviorally (I confess to some hesitation in naming these creatures men. I see a man as something completely unrelated to any of these wastes of sperm).  It is, I believe, as pervasive, and equally as damaging in its hold on society, as the issue of racism currently flooding the news after the egregious, obviously racially motivated murder of Trayvon Williams.  But, I guarantee, the utter disregard for human life, and the craven cowardice of the men involved, the same as is so obvious in that sad event, is no less ubiquitous in the sex trade…. but no one is talking about prostitution on a national, regional, or local stage.

Back before human society became so complex, men who murdered, or men who were cowardly enough to abuse women & children, were dealt with, quickly and finally, and without appeal, by the other men of the tribe, by common consent and custom, and there was no doubt among the other members of the tribe as to the honor of such actions. This is the principle historic basis for honor among men, to my mind, and has been lost, or at least misplaced, as society has become more complex, blurring the once-clear limits drawn to proscribe such destructive anti-social behaviors.

Now that my own awareness has been awakened, my eyes opened fully at last, I am of the opinion that it is time for the real men in this society to take up the mantle of responsibility that they have long ignored or rejected, and begin the process of removing this stain from our collective honor. We, as a group, have failed to meet our Duty as humans, as men who are part of a society, to protect and defend the vulnerable and the weak in that society against the men, and even women, who would take advantage of that vulnerability for their own diseased purposes. To regain our honor will require us to act, with purpose and dispatch, to defend the subjects of our Duty, to the death if necessary.  It is the only way we can regain the honor we have lost through our unwillingness to see, and our failure to act.

In order to encourage the acceptance in today’s society of the need for action against the perpetrators of this atrocity, to hasten the release of those still held in thrall, and to promote the cause of those women whose strength and spirit have enabled them to save themselves from their enslaved state, I pledge to re-blog to this site every post I can possibly find written by one of these survivors who has found the strength and courage to tell their story, for as long as it takes, until my death intervenes to stop me, or the scourge, and those responsible for it, are eliminated from this plane of existence.

I’m happy to note that there are a significant number of these once enslaved, and now empowered women, who have found each other, and found strength in the unity of feeling and purpose that being supported has given them. As more links to their work come to my attention, I will be passing those on to my followers, who will hopefully do the same, until the necessary message has reached enough people who care to see that the needed changes in society are encompassed, not ignored or forgotten, as has been true for centuries now. It can only benefit all of us, and I’m not going to stop making noise about it, period, as long as it continues to exist. You can count on it…..

He took his vorpal sword in hand
Long time the manxom foe he sought
Till rested he by the tumtum tree
And stood awhile in thought
— _Jabberwocky_, by Lewis Carroll (Charles Dodgson)

However many holy words you read,
However many you speak,
What good will they do you
If you do not act on upon them?
— Buddha
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So much depends
Upon
A red wheel
Barrow
Glazed with rain
Water
Beside the white chickens
— William Carlos Williams, _The Red Wheelbarrow_

In poetry, creating and displaying contrasting images can create their own strong responses in the brain, responses that can affect our every act in hidden ways. When you read the above poem, what do YOU see?  There are a series of sharp contrasts in the poem, created in part by the words themselves, but also enhanced by the position of those words in the structure of the poem. This will create a different response in every brain, I believe, and points out what I believe is true of all poetry, for all the people who read it.

In short, I believe that there is a special and significant part of the human brain that is solely responsible for our reaction to the poems we read, a part separate and distinct from that part of us that learns by reading prose. This part of us is connected directly to our sense of beauty, our sense of proportion, our sense of wonder, and our sense of justice. Each of those senses is one that is powerful in its hold on our behavior, and each plays an essential role in aligning our actions with our principles.

The direct effect this has on us is to immediately assign a high priority to whatever reaction in us the poem stimulates, a higher priority than might have been assigned from reading the same concepts in prose form. Thus, it frees our reaction, aiding it in achieving swift implementation, adding power and purpose to the ensuing actions. Essentially, our brains are able to make faster decisions, and develop faster responses to whatever the universe may dole out for its amusement, and in many, many instances, all documented in history, swift, decisive actions have a much higher success rate than do those less swiftly found and applied. And, as we all know, timing is everything……

“Literature. . . is the union of suffering with the instinct for form.” — Thomas Mann

And for the few that only lend their ear,
That few is all the world.
— Samuel Daniel (1562-1619) — Musophilus, Stanza 97
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“Skepticism is the chastity of the intellect, and it is shameful to surrender it too soon or to the first comer: there is nobility in preserving it coolly and proudly through long youth, until at last, in the ripeness of instinct and discretion, it can be safely exchanged for fidelity and happiness.” — George Santayana

This is a lovely and useful viewpoint to take as one’s own, but the message could have been presented with a bit more flair, I think. Perhaps it is an occupational hazard for philosophers to become pedantic, or just plain boring, when faced, as so often happens, with the task of trying to convey a subject of subtle depth and complexity to an audience not constitutionally prepared to receive it. I think the point could be made more attractive to, and more easily digested by, that subset of humanity if it were presented thus:

Being positive in life is all well and good,
and optimism will give you a half-full glass.
But in the end, to find the way out of the wood,
Doubt is a far better way to cover your ass!

gigoid wrote that….. for what it’s worth…..

“It has come to my attention that nothing I never said has caused me any harm. When I am gone, you will be sorry you never heard me say what I don’t usually. But if you had, it would have been memorable, which now it isn’t because you didn’t. I have enjoyed these occasional flashes of silence so much, since they enhance my conversation so delightfully. It is a pleasure for those who do not listen, so they don’t have to hear what I do not say, which is one of the major reasons why I don’t say what I do not do. I hope this clears up all the confusion.”
— Anonymous

🙂
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“It is probably not love that makes the world go around, but rather those mutually supportive alliances through which partners recognize their dependence on each other for the achievement of shared and private goals.” — Fred Allen

When I first came upon this, I started chuckling about half-way through, and it wasn’t until finishing that the reason why occurred to me. At the final word, my mind said to me “Hilarious! What a ridiculously superfluous train of thought, expressed with far too many words, and completely losing the clarity, relevance, and simple grandeur of the initial phrase.” (Well, it was a little pithier than that; my internal editor re-phrased it for me on the way to the page….) This man obviously had far too much time on his hands, and should have found something more useful to occupy his mind for that period of time when this was produced. He, and the rest of the world, would have been far better served had he turned his oh-so-mundane powers of perception on say, bathroom etiquette, or mushroom farming, or something he was more qualified to comment upon; it is clear that if he himself was ever in love, it was with an accountant……. ah well, it takes all kinds, I suppose…..
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“If you can’t say somethin’ nice, don’t say nothin’ at all.” — Thumper (1942)

I used to believe this to be the single best thing a Disney character ever said. And, all things considered, it is still a good policy for maintaining good everyday relations between people; what you don’t say can never be held against you.  But, I can no longer hold it as my standard for all avenues of expression; if so, I’d have to give up writing altogether, as saying stuff that isn’t very nice comprises a significant percentage of my output.  I do try to maintain a certain level of dignity, but with some of the issues I’ve come to be passionate about, I’m not going to limit myself to merely the nice stuff. Positivity is fine, in its place, but I’ll be frank; it’s not universally applicable in certain situations, and I won’t accept it as a limit to my choice of potentially useful actions. In short, it is not always the right path to success, an idea long expressed in our success-oriented culture as “nice guys finish last.”

Over time, I’ve come to realize that there are instances when the civilized man must put aside his civility, and connect with a baser side of his spirit.  If, for example, I were ever to find myself alone in a room with a man I know to be involved in trafficking of human flesh, of prostituting and abusing women, for whatever reason he may have in his sick, tiny little brain, I will not be speaking to him nicely, or make any misguided attempts to appeal to his better nature.  Most likely I wouldn’t speak with, or to, him at all; I’d probably just kill him in silence, quickly, without hesitation or mercy, like the vermin he is; with my bare hands if possible, for my sense of satisfaction, but with a bullet between his eyes if not. And then I would walk out the door, leaving his useless carcass there to rot.  But that’s another story, for another day….. Besides, hearing that might scare Thumper, and that’s just wrong….
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As we approach the end of another morning of self-indulgent self-expression, I find myself unusually tired. Of course, that may be a direct result of only four hours sleep, followed by two hours of unfettered, energy consuming thought, and the creation of today’s offering. Probably doesn’t indicate any superiority of the results of that effort, but it does speak to the perseverance I’ve shown on little sustenance of a physical nature….

Long story short, I think I’m gonna eat some breakfast, and go back to bed for a couple hours. I know, I know, terrible for my overall health, exercise-wise, but much more attractive in my current state than the concept of me outside, running, or even walking faster than a stroll; a terrifying prospect at best. No matter in the long run…. it’s my karma, and I’ll ignore it if I want to….so there…..   🙂    Y’all take care out there…..and watch out for stobor! They’re vicious this time of the year…..


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

gigoid

Kowabunga!

Luckily, the rabbit lived, and prospered….

Ffolkes,
Skyclad before the pale, he sits to write his way into the day……and in an unprecedented move, he has brought his brain with him!…..

“In a real dark night of the soul it is always three o’clock in the morning.” — F. Scott Fitzgerald

Have the claws of depression ever set themselves in your flesh, slicing their way into your conscious mind to fill it with diffuse anxiety and deep despair? Have you sat, alone in a dark room, and thought of all that you have lost? Does the sunshine make you angry for being so cheerful? When depression rears its ugly head and takes over the soul, the world loses all its color and warmth; everything you see is grey and shadowed, and somehow menacing. Being alone becomes a penance, a sentence for violations of natural law, and sleep is the only surcease from the crushing weight that weighs down the mind, and soul. All the goodness in the world seems far away, and unattainable by any effort we can make. Even hope becomes uncomfortable, because of the fear it will turn out to be false. Thoughts and feelings feel out of control, and the simplest tasks can become a challenge to your reduced level of functioning. Believe me when I say, being depressed is no picnic, and you still get the ants……


Having been a psychiatric technician for so long, I know the effects of depression very well, from both sides of the therapeutic relationship, having treated many depressed individuals, and having suffered its claws myself due to PTSD. It is a difficult condition to treat, from a therapist’s viewpoint, as it is difficult to help someone find the light when they want to sit in the dark, and close their eyes against the light. And from the other side, the negative filter through which a depressed individual views the world denies any possibility of change. For  reasons which are still unclear, a person who becomes depressed is actually more comfortable in that state than they are when they are not influenced by its debilitating symptoms. And from having experienced it myself, I can tell you without hesitation that it is insidiously powerful, and incredibly hard to set aside in order to get back to a more stable mental state, one in which the world again becomes beautiful, the spirit once again takes flight, and life regains its attraction once more…….

The sense of death is most in apprehension;
And the poor beetle, that we tread upon,
In corporal sufferance finds a pang as great
As when a giant dies.
— William Shakespeare (1564-1616), Measure for Measure — Act iii, Sc. 1

I usually steer clear of using Shakespeare, as his work has been over-used, and IMHO is over-rated anyway. He did write a lot of beautiful passages, and should be considered as a master of the sonnet as well as the play. But I like this one, both for the creative beauty of his phrasing and structure, and for the idea behind it, which I see as a clear observation of the interconnectedness of all life-forms. We’re born, we live, and we die, thus completing the cycle of existence as per the natural laws of this universe (or at least as far as we know those laws…..). And every other creature on this planet goes through the same cycle of birth, life, death, birth, life, death, etc…, until one can only conclude that we must be alike in other ways as well, and are thereby connected in some fashion, both to the universe, and to each other. This connection puts us all on the same level, at least in the eyes of the universe; no form of life escapes death. We humans, though intelligent, curious, and supremely adaptive to new environments, have no advantage over the tiniest creature on Earth, for we all will face our mortality in the end.

     Thus our sense of entitlement, of being the top of the food chain, is not justified, for we have no more power over death than the smallest, weakest life form in our world. Species discrimination based on intelligence is foolish; we must come to terms with our own mortality and accept our position in the universe, not above other forms of life, but shoulder to shoulder. We may as well, because we’re going to die anyway; it’s best to try to approach it with some dignity based on fact, rather than unjustified delusion…..

“If you can’t say somethin’ nice, don’t say nothin’ at all.” — Thumper (1942)

Bill Russell, the former professional basketball player, is considered by many fans to be the best defensive player ever to play the game. He played the game with studied intensity, and with complete dignity, approaching the contests with the same attitude he approached life. He was a proponent of the above attitude, one we all learned as a child, watching Bambi and Thumper inflict their terminal cuteness on unsuspecting children in a theater near you. And, as far as it goes, it is a good piece of advice, well worth considering, and useful in teaching manners. But, as with any childish conclusion, it doesn’t go quite far enough. But Bill said this, “One should play the game as a gentleman, always. But, there are times when an elbow to the chops is the only way to make a point.” (My apologies to Bill, as the quote is a paraphrase, the original being unavailable to check for accuracy; the point it makes is intact)


Yes, being nice to each other is the best way to approach living with others, and not speaking never got anyone into trouble over what they said.  But the rules for behavior amongst ourselves need to be very flexible, and subject to revision moment by moment. There are too many facets to the human mind to ever consider limiting one’s choices of how to react to any particular situation. This is reinforced by the nature of reality, i.e. constant unpredictable changes are normal, so once again, limiting how we choose to act is an inappropriate response, and doomed to failure. As a human, we need to embrace that part of us that is flexible, and creative, in order to have the best chance of dealing with reality while still staying sane……

Speaking of sanity, keeping mine is going to require some work today, so I’ll be off now to pursue other activities, reluctantly. I will leave you with the following thoughts…..

All men are poets at heart
— Ralph Waldo Emerson
All poets are mad
— Robert Burton

Y’all take care out there…..


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

Kowabunga!