Looks like a can o’corn….

Ffolkes,

“I think the Wheel of Morality needs a tune-up.”

~~ Wakko Warner ~~

Day the next 006

    ‘Tis a sad old world we live in, isn’t it? The sculpture you see above, located in a courtyard on the grounds of Trinity College, in Dublin, Ireland, is certainly a perfect metaphor for a lot of my ranting, wouldn’t you agree? When I took the picture, I didn’t realize it, but, looking at it now, especially with the oh-so-perfect pearl above it, really drives that point home, for me….

Since the quote and picture worked so well, I’m going to try a new method of starting these Pearls, in which the intro section does exactly what it is intended to do, to wit: introduce today’s Pearl…. Let’s see how it goes….

Today, I have much to do out in the BBR, so, the Pearl you see will be a bit truncated, if only in terms of fresh material…. A quick video pick, a modified ranting section, and some archived material should cover it all nicely, I think…. With no further need for the usual drama and build-up of angst, we shall proceed to the day’s effort, just as if we did this every day…. I think you’re going to enjoy this, if only for the change of pace….

But, please, don’t forget to fasten your seat belts, and keep your thinking caps handy, okay? Right….

Shall we Pearl?

“Man is an exception, whatever else he is. If it is not true that a divine being fell, then we can only say that one of the animals went entirely off its head.” — G. K. Chesterton

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

This particular collection of classical music is one of my favorite compilations…. Listening to Mozart has an advantage over most classical music, in that it stimulates brain activity, while simultaneously calming the nerves, and soothing the psyche…. You will need this in order to be able to successfully navigate the ranting section today…. Trust me on this….


Best of Mozart : Ouvertures , Sonatas , Eine Kleine Nachtmusik , Concertos

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

“A friend once asked if it was true that no politician ever failed by  underestimating the intelligence of the peasants and livestock. I told him we would never know, because their intelligence was something that was impossible to underestimate.” — President Weishaupt, “Church & State” by Dave Sim

I don’t have the time, nor the energy, to rant today, though my angst really needs to be released…. It is especially powerful since seeing the following three posts on talesfromtheconspiratum.com. Read these, and you’ll get the same effect as a rant based on the above quote…. It will have to do for today….

http://talesfromtheconspiratum.com/2015/01/06/the-american-people-are-utterly-clueless-about-what-is-going-to-happen-as-we-enter-2015/

http://talesfromtheconspiratum.com/2015/01/06/activists-plastered-the-london-tube-with-posters-telling-people-their-jobs-suck/

http://talesfromtheconspiratum.com/2015/01/06/north-korea-rebuttal-at-un-u-s-the-biggest-violator-of-human-rights-in-the-world/

Ffolkes, if you aren’t worried now, you’re simply not paying attention…. But, then, that’s part of the whole problem, isn’t it? Ah well, the following piece of truth tells us why…..

“It is human nature that rules the world, not governments and regimes.” — Svetlana Alliluyeva

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

Staying with today’s theme….

Geezer to Congress, with Love

Politicos don’t care much ’bout seniors and their ilk,
except for their money, I thinks;
Though they talk as if they’d cozen them in silk,
what they actually do, it stinks.

“The banks are failing, we can’t allow that!”,
steal from the aged, that’s their plan.
“Their life’s ending, that’s plainly where they’re at,”
lie shamelessly, because they can.

Maybe just once, if we all act together,
it couldn’t miss.
Right on their shoes, no matter the weather,
take careful aim, and piss.

Why the hell not?
It’s worth a shot!

~~ gigoid ~~


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

As mentioned, time is at a premium, so, we’ve gone to the archives to find an appropriate piece…. This one will do nicely….

From 4/10/2013:

In re: freshness, since the poem section is only half and half, I’ll put together an old-school pearl for this last section today…. It’s a bit shorter, and takes less time than another rant…. Here is one with a very obscure, but valid, point…. which, of course, is left as an exercise for the Gentle Reader….. (that’s you…..) ….. Enjoy!

But Faith, fanatic Faith, once wedded fast
To some dear falsehood, hugs it to the last.

~~ Thomas Moore (1779-1852) — Lalla Rookh, The Veiled Prophet of Khorassan ~~

‘Tis not the fairest form that holds The mildest, purest soul within;
‘Tis not the richest plant that holds The sweetest fragrance in.

 ~~ Dawes ~~


“Human life is but a series of footnotes to a vast, obscure, unfinished masterpiece.” — Vladimir Nabokov

“In God We Trust.” I don’t believe it would sound any better if it were true.” — Mark Twain

“Imagination is the one weapon in the war against reality.” — Jules de Gaultier

“It is human nature to think wisely & act foolishly.” — Anatole France

He ne’er is crown’d
With immortality, who fears to follow
Where airy voices lead.

 ~~ John Keats (1795-1821) — Endymion, Book ii ~~


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

I don’t much like giving in to expediency, but, this time, it didn’t work out too badly; moreover, it’s done, which, as we know, is all I really care about…. I’ll try to give it a bit more effort tomorrow, ffolkes, if I make it that far….. See ya….

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

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

Which is Why….

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

gigoid, the dubious

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

Kowabunga!


À bientôt, mon cherí….


			

Passages from the Book of Righteousness….

Ffolkes,

“After I’m dead I’d rather have people ask why I have no monument than why I have one.”

 — Cato the Elder ~~

(234-149 B.C.)

space-elevator-japan

    Some days, one feels a sense of imminent changes; it’s as if the winds of Time are blowing softly, whispering soft promises of new and different, leaving us shivering in anticipatory delight, with unreasoning hope…. Then, of course, there are days like today, when one is unsure if time is even in force, a not unfamiliar sensation for such as us, resigned to Fate, filled with sorrow and painful realization of the impending catastrophic events faced by a world unaware of its own danger…..

SIGH…. ‘Twould be easy indeed to give in, to just crawl back under the covers, & pretend it will all go away if we can only ignore it long enough…. But, this time, things ARE different, more so than we know, more than most may guess…. It is times such as these when I lament my perceptions, and my ability to see the larger picture; it would be nice, indeed, to be able to ignore what I see, to be able to say with some degree of confidence that I believe there is a bright future for our species…. It would be nice, and, it would be totally false…

So, I won’t say any such thing…. nor, at this point will I belabor this point any further…. I’ve stated my views on the coming environmental crisis, (or crises, I should say; I doubt it will be as simple as having only ONE crisis to deal with….); as well, I’ve shown where the all-too-obvious evidence is located, should you wish to read it…. and, as I can attest, it’s ugly news…. None of it is calculated to make for a nice, peaceful breakfast, whether one is going continental, with coffee & pastries, or going for the full Irish…. the coffee will grow cold as you contemplate the future, with fear and loathing, and, the croissants, or the eggs, very likely won’t be quite so appealing….

One of the changes you’ll see will be on this blog…. On the first of October, I’ll be making an announcement regarding my plans, which will have an effect on this blog, a significant effect, to be sure. I’ll save the rest for then; it’s but a few days now, and once the plans are complete, I’ll let y’all know what they are…. For now, suffice it to say, on a personal level, changes are not merely desired, but, required, if I am to be able to live my life the way I intend to live it…. On that note, we will bring this to an almost unprecedentedly smooth opening, with actual introduction-like features, to a dignified, and timely close…. imagine that!

I believe the following two-fer, (SIGH… if you insist upon accurate use of the traditional metaphor, imagine a pair of earrings, set with perfectly matched pearls….), will give you the clearest idea, as far as the desired mood/attitude I wish to encourage/demand today…. I will also point out, it would be helpful if you are up to date on your insurance….. Shall we Pearl?…..

“I brought my BOWLING BALL – and some DRUGS!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

“And furthermore, my bowling average is unimpeachable!!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

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

“There are no other colours without the blues.” — Doctor Who

For close to three years now, I’ve been venting all the feelings of anger and betrayal I feel at what I’ve seen transpire in this country, and in the world at large…. I suppose you could say I have been a historian, in the sense I’ve observed the events of human interaction in my own time, along with learning of other times, through the simple expedient of reading a book, every day, for almost 60 years now, having learned to read at age four. I’ve also watched the smaller interactions, between people, including myself, for all that time, comparing every thing I learned to what came before, to help me to be able to have some idea of what COULD happen next…. a very valuable skill, insight….

My insight tells me there are hard times coming, ffolkes. I don’t know how much more clearly I can deliver the message to the world…. Of course, it would help if more than just a tiny, tiny, insignificant portion of that world is HEARING my message, but, I doubt I am the only one spouting off on this, so, that can’t be the entire problem…. I do read others who say the same as I do, with much more viewing power than I possess…. but, nobody really wants to hear it, because it’s too hard, and too scary to think about…. So, most folks do what people generally do when receiving bad news; they ignore it, or deny it….

This time, though, there will be no denial, and ignoring the rise of the oceans will NOT be possible, not when the water is lapping at your shoes…. which, as can be seen already in Florida, it is…. I would imaging it won’t be much more than a few short years before Miami is completely under water, along with about half of the entire state…. The oceans are rising ffolkes, as the ice melts at the poles…. We just had the warmest year on record, and from what scientists can tell from the record of history in nature’s library, last year was the warmest year, average, EVER…. We can no longer ignore the warming trend ffolkes; it is now established as very real….

Of course, the general population, which is starting to get concerned (witness the Walk for Climate Change last Sunday….), it is already too late for that to work; that march might have helped, had it taken place in 1925…. Now, it is far too late to stop the processes we have begun…. In fact, now that the permafrost, which exists all over the world, underground, and undersea, is also melting, releasing chlorine, and other toxic, CATALYTIC substances into the atmosphere at an unprecedented rate…. These chemicals are biological and chemical catalysts, which once reaching a certain level in the air, will produce other changes, that will act incredibly rapidly, to make changes we cannot even predict, thus making them impossible to prepare for….

Ah well, as I said, there is plenty of evidence to show us how we have screwed up, and how badly…. but, nobody seems to want to look at it…. Everyone would rather moan and complain, and march in the streets, instead of doing the ONLY thing that would help…. to wit: Take every elected official, every despot, and every other leading political, religious, and financial leader in the world, and shoot them, right in the head, one bullet for each…. Then the rest of us can start to either get to work moving us all to the asteroids, or the moons of Saturn, or finding SOME way to stop the processes in the environment that are going to kill us, and repair the damage to our world…..

Sadly, ffolkes, the odds are not good for any of that to happen…. Nobody is going to wake up enough people to make a difference…. so, for today at least, I’m done talking about it…. It’s depressing, and it’s at the point where there is no more I can do about it, until I go buy that gun, and some ammo, and set out to make myself feel a bit better…..

So be it….. gigoid has spoken…. quite enough for one day…. However,  because he can never shut himself up, here is a five-star pearl to give the proper finish such a somber discussion….

GRAVE, n.  A place in which the dead are laid to await the coming of the medical student.

    Beside a lonely grave I stood —
        With brambles ’twas encumbered;
    The winds were moaning in the wood,
        Unheard by him who slumbered,

    A rustic standing near, I said:
        “He cannot hear it blowing!”
    “‘Course not,” said he:  “the feller’s dead —
        He can’t hear nowt [sic] that’s going.”

    “Too true,” I said; “alas, too true —
        No sound his sense can quicken!”
    “Well, mister, wot is that to you? —
        The deadster ain’t a-kickin’.”

    I knelt and prayed:  “O Father, smile
        On him, and mercy show him!”
    That countryman looked on the while,
        And said:  “Ye didn’t know him.”

                                                         Pobeter Dunko

 — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

“Our existence is but a brief crack of light between two eternities of darkness.” — Vladimir Nabokov

“Panic now – avoid the rush!”  — Smart Bee

“I am serious.  And don’t call me Shirley.” — Smart Bee

I live not in myself, but I become
Portion of that around me;
High mountains are a feeling, but the hum
Of human cities torture.

— Lord Byron (1788-1824) — Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage, Canto iii, Stanza 72


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

Steve Winwood, Rick Grech, Eric Clapton, Ginger Baker. One album, one mega-talented band. The first time they played together in public was at the concert you will see… For a lot of us old fogies, this brings back some pretty great memories…. As well, it gives those who came after a good visual picture, of the musical concert scene of the late 60’s….

Blind Faith, Live at Hyde Park, London, 1969

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

Somehow, when I’m in a mood, Charles fits better than most anyone else….. I hope you enjoy this one as much as I do….

Bluebird

there’s a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I’m too tough for him,
I say, stay in there, I’m not going
to let anybody see
you.
there’s a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I pour whiskey on him and inhale
cigarette smoke
and the whores and the bartenders
and the grocery clerks
never know that
he’s
in there.

there’s a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I’m too tough for him,
I say,
stay down, do you want to mess
me up?
you want to screw up the
works?
you want to blow my book sales in
Europe?
there’s a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I’m too clever, I only let him out
at night sometimes
when everybody’s asleep.
I say, I know that you’re there,
so don’t be
sad.
then I put him back,
but he’s singing a little
in there, I haven’t quite let him
die
and we sleep together like
that
with our
secret pact
and it’s nice enough to
make a man
weep, but I don’t
weep, do
you?

~~ Charles Bukowski ~~


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

I think you will find this pearl to fit perfectly within the parameters set for us by the two-fer in the intro section…. It even ends with another fine sentiment from our old friend, the Z-man…. Y’ll need to enjoy this one ffolkes; it was fun to put together, so I know it will be fun to read, if you let it…..

“I take an instant dislike to lawyers. It saves time.” — To avoid litigation, the author wishes to remain anonymous

“Why don’t cannibals eat clowns? Because they taste funny.” — Smart Bee

“Man possesses limited intelligence, but alas, unlimited stupidity.” —

“It has yet to be proven that intelligence has any survival value.” — Arthur C. Clarke

“I find your faith in reality rather amusing.” — gigoid, to himself, frequently

“At first I was uncertain, but now I’m not so sure.” — Heisenberg

“If I felt any more SOPHISTICATED I would DIE of EMBARRASSMENT!” — Zippy the Pinhead

Exactly….. See? I told you, it’s all in the wrist….

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

So I don’t forget again…. the picture at the top of today’s post is an artist’s rendition of one design for a space elevator, a tethered line to Earth, extending all the way up to geosynchronous orbit, hauling cargo and people, slowly and majestically, up the connecting line, and back down, all with a minimal expenditure of energy…. It is one of the more ingenious ideas Man has devised to get into nearby space, one which may serve us well, if we can manage to survive long enough to build one, or more of them….

Once built, working elevators into orbital space would provide the means to build whole cities, as satellites around the Earth, in space, using solar power as energy, and the advantages to be found by living at the top of a very long, powerful well of gravity…. The engineering possibilities are practically endless, due to the availability of unlimited power from the sun, and nearly unlimited power from using the gravitational difference between the two points, one in space, one anchored to the Earth…. If we live long enough to build it, it also provides a means of launching ships to other planets, from orbit, with much less effort than lifting them up from the surface of the planet….

The closing section, though, isn’t the place for such a discussion, unfortunately; it’s a fascinating concept, though, and should be explored thoroughly, once our species’ priorities have been put into proper order…. I think saving our sorry asses needs to come first…. but, we’ll talk about that tomorrow, or, soon, I’m sure…. In the meantime, I’m outta here, or there, or somewhere… I will, however be back tomorrow, all things being equal….

“DON’T go!!  I’m not HOWARD COSELL!!  I know POLISH JOKES…  WAIT!!  Don’t go!!  I AM Howard Cosell!…  And I DON’T know Polish jokes!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

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

“The *only* duly authorized Computer Curmudgeon.”

Kowabunga!

À bientôt, mon cherí.

 

A Swift Kick In The Pants, Inc….

Ffolkes,

Terrible things could happen now…. they could, you know. And, we’ll deserve every second we experience of mind-numbing, soul-chilling, petrifying terror, because, hey, we’re the ones who left the door wide open, inviting it to enter our domain, bringing with it our ultimate doom…. Yes, it’s our own damn fault, and we will know the truth of the matter, because we have been warned, having previously been given wisdom such as this….

“The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil, but because of those who look on and do nothing.” — Albert Einstein

Albert E & true sin(A bit more powerful a message when combined with the graphic art, isn’t it?….)

This is not new wisdom, that we’ve never before seen or suspected; history has provided us with innumerable instances proving the truth of this particular aphorism….. Time after time throughout our relatively short span of existence on this world, we find nearly innumerable examples of men or women who had prior knowledge of an issue of questionable morality,, and, by their silence, for whatever reason, allowed it to take place, to the detriment of all….

It doesn’t make it right, knowing how common a problem it is, but, it is certainly not an uncommon issue for mankind…. Such issues are not, perhaps, of those we are given by Reality, our favorite gifts, …. In fact, many don’t look on this, or any knowledge, as gifts, and THAT is a big part of the entire problem….

Our problem, then, can be seen as a failure of spirit, that has to do with a basic virtue, one that has been claimed as the basis for all other virtues; without this characteristic, none of our finer qualities are ever seen in the light of day…. That pillar upon which all other virtue rests, then, is Courage…. Yes, plain and simple, courage….

I have found, in my fairly long life, that most of mankind are cowards…. Sad to say, but, true nonetheless, since all the evidence is clear…. I say this, as well, knowing I’m not an exception, though it IS something I’ve tried hard to mitigate, in order to feel I have the right to call myself honorable, and meet my own eyes each morning in the mirror…. Fear is a hard thing for most of us to admit, even though it isn’t considered abnormal; it’s strength, and the way it causes us to lose control frightens us…

However, that is also its saving grace, as the guilt one feels, for having given in to it, can, and does, stimulate us to greater effort, whereupon we can find that courage within ourselves, the next time we are in danger of giving in…. This is how almost everything we do, and have done, of an ethical nature, ever gets done…. because someone discovers they DO have the courage to act when there is danger, moral, ethical, or physical, threatening them, or threatening those for whom they care…..

That is what it takes, you see…. No virtuous act can ever take place, unless good people have the courage to act in the face of the Evil that exists, in spite of the fear they feel in the presence of that Evil. If they don’t summon, or find somewhere with themselves, the courage to act ethically, or morally, if that is needed, then Evil has free rein to let itself out to play in human affairs, to the detriment of us all….

Each of us has to find that courage within ourselves, the courage to put aside our fear, to carry on with what we know to be right, even though expediency and comfort are left behind in such cases…. Living with honor and integrity is never the easiest path we can take; it is always fraught with danger, because it doesn’t avoid evil, because it’s too hard, but, rather, confronts it, endeavoring to deal with it in a straightforward, upright fashion…. thus, preserving one’s own honor, when forced to have truck with what always leaves us feeling a bit dirty….

Now that we have wandered so far afield this morning, I’m not sure what will happen to this Pearl…. Minor ranting isn’t uncommon in the intro, but, I do try to limit it to no more than eight or ten paragraphs, so we don’t take forever to get into just the first section…. a resolution which, this morning, is NOT unfolding according to plan…. Allow me to sum up, and get on with it, if you will…

All of what I wrote above is true and complete, to the best of my knowledge, and constitutes a fairly accurate assessment of today’s situation here on planet Earth…. Evil is out there, and when we… that’s you, and me…. fail to stand up to it, look it in the eye, and tell it to “fuck off, you bloody sod!”, then it will continue to manifest its existence, causing untold pain and suffering for us all…. So, be brave, ffolkes, and don’t let Evil have its way without at least some token resistance, ‘kay?…. ‘Kay!…..

Shall we Pearl?…..

“Asked what he gained from philosophy, he answered, “To do without being commanded what others do from fear of the laws.”” — Diogenes Laertius (c. 200 AD) — Aristotle, xi
_____________________________

Today’s pearl is one that I’ve worked on ahead of time, so, the fact that I’m up later than usual, and got a slow start, won’t have much effect on when it gets posted today…. all in all, a good thing…. It DOES mean that I’m ahead of myself, and need to slow down a little, or I’ll be bumping into myself from behind…. which is not only hard on me, but isn’t so good for the space-time continuum…. I’ve seen some pretty bad cosmic aftershocks from that kind of metaphorical/metaphysical dust-up….

To counteract any possible chance of THAT taking place, (my insurance guy told me I can’t afford ANY more repair bills for space and time…. those metaphysical construction guys charge OUTRAGEOUS prices to fix things!….), this will be an old-school Pearl, attempting to balance out the mini-rant in the intro, and the religirant from the archives  in section three…. So, here is a group of fine pearls, fresh and shiny…. just for y’all….

“Solon used to say that speech was the image of actions;… that laws were like cobwebs,–for that if any trifling or powerless thing fell into them, they held it fast; while if it were something weightier, it broke through them and was off.” — Diogenes Laertius (c. 200 AD) — Solon, x

(So much for the concept of legislating morality, eh?….   Remember, ffolkes, Solon was the first human to codify and bring order to the concept of the Law, so, he should know…. gigoid….)

“If you were going to shoot a mime, would you use a silencer?” — Steven Wright

(I wouldn’t…. I’d want everyone to know….  gigoid)

“Life is a great surprise. I do not see why death should not be an even greater one.” — Vladimir Nabokov, quoted in “Time”, 1981

(“Me, too”… gigoid again…. I guess I’m commenting on these pearls….    🙄     )

“A generation which ignores history has no past and no future.” — Robert Heinlein, The Notebooks of Lazarus Long

(Just as an exercise…. when was the last time you heard a modern politician use a historical basis for anything they are going to do? And, how many of them are aware they are repeating some of history’s most well-recorded cultural patterns with their own actions?…. I can answer both…. the correct number of those of our leaders who either pay attention to the forces and lessons of history, or have any idea of their own part in that, is ZERO…..)

“Do not try to live forever. You will not succeed.” — George Bernard Shaw

(Good point….)

Enjoy the present hour,
Be thankful for the past,
And neither fear nor wish
Th’ approaches of the last.

— Abraham Cowley (1618-1667)

“It’s all in there, don’t y’know?…. All there inside us already…. Happiness, love, serenity, peace, courage, compassion, all are waiting for us to discover them, right there where they have always been, inside us, abiding until we find them again…..”  ~~ gigoid the dubious

(This last pearl is one I wrote as the final line for a mild religirant back a couple of years ago…. It is my own first attempt at an aphorism, of any real success, which makes it worth mention…. to me, and, after all, it IS my blog…. gigoid, delving deeply into egoism….)
_____________________________

In cruising through the archives of past Pearls, I came across this poem, one of my own, (today only, I’ll say it…. “one of my own, of course”….) first posted in October of 2012…. It’s better than I remember it to be, which means I did something right…. It’s also got a lot of ME in it, if you know what I mean…. Enjoy….

Raging at Aging

As old as you feel, we are told, is old as you are,
custom assures such vision will carry us far.
Reality begs to differ, may it be so bold
it’s really quite painful, and very, very cold.

The power and strength we felt in our halcyon youth
desert us with age, yet another unwelcome truth.
Irony rules our time here on this bountiful earth
as we reflect the changes, over time since our birth.

As physical powers fade from this fragile shell,
we learn our mind can serve us, quite as well.
The strength that once filled our bones and hearts
is now applied by will, to more arcane arts.

Life’s greatest gift is our freedom of choice;
no matter how often we forget, we still get a voice.
Energy, or apathy, by our will we may choose,
failing to do so, our only way to lose.

Each of us lives in the grip of time and space,
always seeking our balance, our own chosen place.
One must accept reality, for, ’tis true at the core,
all we can do, is all we can do, and nothing more.

~~ gigoid ~~

_____________________________

As noted above, I was reading through some Pearls from a couple years ago, and came across some old rants I’ll be recycling, due to their continuing relevance, as well as because they’re good rants… This one is fairly mild, in all, but does hit the point to made squarely on the head…. Enjoy….

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
From 12/12/12:

“He who proselytizes in the cause of unbelief is basically a man in need of belief.” — Eric Hoffer

This is true…. you never see an atheist going door to door, trying to convert the pious to their unbelief. However, I would go further on this train of thought, and add that, “He who proselytizes, in any cause, in basically a man in need of a life.” I’m sure it occurred to Mr. Hoffer, but he was too busy trying to explain this statement to somebody who didn’t understand the word ‘proselytize’…..

For my own case, I have never, ever understood why people feel compelled to go door to door to try to get other people to believe what they believe; it’s one of the most persistent delusional systems I’ve ever witnessed, to believe that anyone wants to hear what they have to say, much less they will find their beliefs palatable to others, or find anyone who believes them to be superior to their own…..

“More people would learn from their mistakes if they weren’t so busy denying they made them.” — Smart Bee

Humans seem to have an immense blind spot when it comes to their own actions and beliefs. Most of them never seem to question the things they are told, even when those things are presented with no evidence other than faith. Of course, the people who are invested in the religious system, to wit: the preachers, begin their indoctrination when their constituents are very young, when they are still prone to accept whatever an adult says as truth.

This ensures a life-long predilection for being simple to control…. or, in short, mental slavery, if you will. Unless there is some sort of rebellion of spirit, where new knowledge is injected, these poor saps will spend their entire lives believing that what they have been told is real, when, in fact, they are fitting themselves with shackles, that will forever imprison their minds, and their imagination…..

“To defend one’s self against fear is simply to insure that one will, one day, be conquered by it; fears must be faced.” — James Baldwin

In my life-long quest for the truth, I’ve come to believe that religions, while originally intended to benefit people, (by their iconic progenitors, anyway…. I’m sure Jesus was a quite nice man, and wanted the best for those to whom he preached his own philosophy of compassion….), have historically been taken over by the predators who live to control others.

To be fair, some of those who become priests, or any of the other varieties of religious fanatic that prevail in our society, may indeed believe that their beliefs are true, and act accordingly, but the majority are, as far as I can tell, only concerned with maintaining status quo, thereby benefiting themselves, while never actually allowing any REAL progress in the development of the human condition. They would have society behave as if we were still living in caves, in essence, still cowering in our meager shelter while the storms and lightning are raging outside, terrified of the power of what we do not understand, and, therefore, allow ourselves to fear….

“A universe of death, which God by curse
Created evil, for evil only good;
Where all life dies, death lives,
and Nature breeds Perverse,
all monstrous, all prodigious things,
Abominable, unutterable and worse
Than fables yet have feigned, or fear conceived,
Gorgons, and Hydras, and Chimeras dire.”

— Milton, Paradise Lost, Book II

(Side note: I’ll bet Milton had a hard time sleeping….)

The Universe is a big place, and there is a lot to learn. Fearing that knowledge, or fearing what changes that knowing will always bring, is the act of a coward, to my mind, and should not be encouraged. Supernatural beings of unlimited power are not a required component to the understanding of Nature and the Universe; we need not fear that our lack of knowledge of how things work is unattainable. Just because we do not understand a part of reality does not mean that whatever it is, is beyond our understanding.

It is not necessary to ask for exemptions, or intervention by our own personal gods, for us to achieve happiness, or even contentment; that is completely within our own power, if we but acknowledge that part of us that is free, and connected to everything else we can perceive. The connections may not be fully understood, but they are there, and if we can only learn to recognize it, the power to change reality lies within us, all the time…. As Epictetus said, “Happiness lies in learning to accept a simple truth. There are some things you can change. And there are some things you cannot.” It’s really quite that easy, you know, once one learns to accept this fact of life…. No dogma required…..

“If brains were outlawed, nothing would change.” — Smart Bee
_____________________________

As things turned out, this may be one of my best all-around efforts to date…. Balanced, but with enough lightness of spirit to keep it afloat, I think… Whatever the reason, I’m happy with it, and it’s done, so, hey, we know what that means, don’t we? Yep…. See ya, 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,
and sometimes,
I just sits.

gigoid the dubious

dozer3

Put the stray curator in the parlor for now….

Ffolkes,
Rational thought, being skittish, and reluctant to come out to play at this time of the morning, has easily escaped my feeble effort to pin it down, in spite of the reservation I made. While the foregone conclusion may well be obvious, that doesn’t alleviate the frustration. Having, however, given a solemn promise, this won’t stop me, but may, due to circumstances completely within my control, adversely affect the quality of the content of today’s Pearl. I’ve a pile of stuff to take care of today out in the BBR, so this missive must needs be done smartly; I only hope I can do so with some style…..

Legal requirements for blog intro material require me to notify any potential readers of the above, little as it has to do with anything at all. Regulations are like that, especially when they only exist in my imagination, but, I prefer to cover all the bases, having experienced the wrath of bureaucrats previously. Not that imaginary bureaucrats have anywhere near the power as actual, live zombies, but, one must do what one believes to be correct, even if not entirely sure of what that may be…. In spite of what you might have heard, the Universe does give points for effort; you just can’t use those points for any of the prizes….

Right…. now that we have conjured up a sufficient quantity of absolute twaddle, it is imperative we not lose momentum, lest we lose track of what has been done, and what remains to do. Of course, I can’t honestly say that I ever actually KEEP track of any of that, but, it sounds good, and does fill in more space. Moreover, we have honorably adhered to my determination to avoid anything resembling cheese, thereby keeping under control one’s consumption of cheese’s favorite beverage companion, dry, white whine…. Hey, it can’t be any other color; I’m Caucasian, and haven’t been out in the sun without a shirt for years…..

Now that I have completely gone ’round the bend, we’ll get on with today’s conflagration (I don’t know what else to call it at this point…..). I will point out that, despite any such rumors to the contrary, none of what is included in this blog has any nutritional value…. intrinsic philosophical value, yes, but, don’t bother trying to live on it, as you’ll end up with a severe case of scurvy to go along with the hair loss….

“It is human nature to think wisely & act foolishly.” — Anatole France
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As mentioned above, I have a lot to do today out in the real world, so fresh material will have to wait until tomorrow…. Here is a relatively short rant, sort of a combined political and religious rant, from the first day of the year we are currently surviving…. It came out pretty good, and is still quite valid today, so…. enjoy!….
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“If the obstacles of bigotry and priestcraft can be surmounted, we may hope that common sense will suffice to do everything else.” — Thomas Jefferson

Oh well, so much for THAT hope! From all I can see in today’s society, what Tom J was afraid of has come to pass. If one takes almost any of the articles in the news that talk about the activities of government, religion, or society at large, it is obvious that bigotry and priestcraft have corrupted every level of those entities, and influence just about every human interaction that we see. Common sense is nowhere present, in any of those same activities under discussion. Of course, he forgot, in this instance, to include the bankers, but perhaps that is where the bigotry comes in…..

By its precise meaning, bigotry doesn’t include the idea of cheating, lying, and stealing from whomever one encounters; those activities, for a bigot, are only appropriate when done to those outside the personal group, to “foreigners, niggers, and chinks,” or some likely other group they’ve chosen to bless with their ignorance…… But, in a sense, bankers can be said to be universally bigoted, for they have no qualms about lying, cheating, or stealing from anyone, in any group, even their own. I guess that would qualify them as Ultimate Bigots…..

“As an ox goeth to the slaughter.” — Old Testament — Proverbs vii, 22; Jeremiah xi, 19

I would imagine this is how the bankers and preachers (either of which is capable of turning into a politician, at the drop of a hint….) view the masses of humanity who do not subscribe to their venality. In this view, they may be at least partially justified, by the apparent willingness of those masses to submit to whatever is done to them. Why should the politicians stop lying, when their lies secure for them the keys to the treasury? Why should the preachers not spread their delusions, when the masses are so willing to accept them, because it saves them the effort of either thinking about morality, or even better, saving them from having to BE moral….. The bankers, of course, need no excuses to carry on their despicable acts of calumny upon the remainder of society; their sole motivation is based on profit for them, and nothing else concerns them at all…

“I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man.” — Thomas Jefferson

Back to Tom…. He was a bit over the top sometimes, in the force of his expression, but never, to my mind, in his sincere commitment to Truth, and his sincere love for Mankind. I would like to think I join him in this sentiment, especially today, when we are so besieged  by attempts to tyrannize our minds by our own beloved ruling classes. The war against immorality continues unabated, and too many folks in the world have withdrawn from the battle, accepting the lies and delusions that are foisted upon them.

It is important, in my opinion, that the rest of us, who can see the depredations assaulting the common man every day, keep on shouting from the rooftops to the rest of our compatriots, if only to save our own sanity….. and, before the strain of the conflict brings us to our knees, and we enter Zippy’s domain, doomed to extinction…..

“I just forgot my whole philosophy of life!!!” — Zippy the Pinhead
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Here is another piece from the archives, to save time, our most precious commodity, after the contents of our bag o’love….
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It has been awhile since I read the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayam, and a small piece of it in Smart Bee gave me a hankering to run through it again. It’s a long piece, though, and can take a while to get through. In addition, it takes up a lot of space…. so, to avoid both those problems, today I’m providing a simple link to the poem, on PoemHunter.com, where I find a lot of what goes into this section…. A very large amount of the world’s best poetry and poets are to be found there, and I enjoy the simplicity of their interface… Any who, here, for your reading pleasure….

http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/the-rubaiyat-of-omar-khayyam/

Enjoy!…..
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Well, I’ve gone and done it…. I’m going for the hat trick today, with all three sections pulled from the archives…. I decided that, if there are over a million words of material in the archives, why should I not utilize a bit of it to my own advantage? It IS my own material, after all…. Any who, here is another rant, this one fairly straightforward, again taking aim at organized religion, which I consider to bear a large degree of responsibility for the state of society….
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“Life is a great surprise. I do not see why death should not be an even greater one.” — Vladimir Nabokov, quoted in “Time”, 1981

Well, Vladimir certainly nailed it in one! This fits right in with what I believe, which, though it has little if anything in common with popular religious views of the afterlife, is nonetheless just as optimistic in outlook as any of those rather exceedingly ornate, highly unlikely scenarios. In my world view, the mind, and consciousness, whatever it may be, is equivalent to energy in our universe, and as such, should logically have the same characteristic as all other forms of energy we have thus far discovered, to wit: it cannot be destroyed, only changed in form.

Each of the world’s religions has their own version of what happens after we die, and all of them are made with the assumption of the presence of their idea of God as the underlying reason for all that occurs. This, while logical, to a small degree (one has to accept some rather specious assumptions in order to follow a logical path to the concept of a God….), mostly reminds me of a small boy walking past a graveyard, whistling loudly to scare off his own fears…. It’s mostly wishful thinking, as far as I can see, according to all the physical evidence available. The proponents of these religious philosophies all make the same basic error in their logical constructs, one that is so basic, they can’t even see it….

That error lies in assuming that Man, or a man, being a mortal being, limited in perception and understanding by their own physical envelope, is capable of either understanding, or describing, what is a God. If one assumes that an entity is capable of creating an entire universe, I don’t think it is logical to assume that we, as part of that creation, would have the capability of comprehending either the process involved, or the being that carried it out. The mere fact that, in order to try to comprehend God at all, we need to try to give him first, a sex, then a visual identity, is the first and most telling clue that we are wrong, right from the start…..

The next clue as to our inability to know God is the behaviors that Man ascribes to Him. In just about every religious book I’ve read, the actions of most of the Gods therein reminded me more of a surly, selfish teenager than of a God. I don’t know, it just seems a bit illogical to have the creator of the entire universe behave worse than a cranky two year old that needs a nap, if He doesn’t get the fawning worship he so desperately needs. It sounds more like Benito Mussolini, or Madonna, to me, than it does like God….

This doesn’t mean, though, that there is no hope of redemption (though I’m not sure from what I’m being redeemed… the idea of original sin is pretty much a hoax, you know, put in the Christian dogma to help manipulate and control people….), or of life after death. The universe is actually a quite beautiful place without the concept of God hanging about, getting in the way…. And this viewpoint allows one to appreciate life much more fully, knowing that we bear sole responsibility for making our lives worth living…

Everybody dies, and everyone lives after death, as far as I can see from a logical standpoint. I think that what Vladimir says is a good way to look at things, as it acknowledges that responsibility for our own happiness, and does so without implying the existence of a need to do so in hope of a reward for good behavior, as is the case in those religious institutions who wish to control people here in this life, using the threat of punishment or reward in the next. We can assume control of our own lives, including our own happiness, or, we can allow others to think for us, and accept the chains and limitations of living according to someone else’s ideas of what is real….

The saddest part of all this? Most folks never even realize they have a choice in the matter. From infancy, they’ve been brainwashed to believe what they’re told, and all-too-few of us manage to escape the bonds of slavery that are placed on our minds early in life. Most folks just accept what they are told by anyone in authority, and get very comfortable in their chains, since they don’t have to think for themselves at all….. They never realize just how large and beautiful the universe really is, because they’ve accepted the blinders they wear, and refuse to even acknowledge that they wear them at all….

It sure makes me glad for whatever happened to keep me from falling for that whole scam; I can’t say exactly what first clued me in to the facts, but, I’m very, very happy that it did. I can’t see going through my life filled with fear of what might happen afterward; it’s too much fun enjoying all the beauty and grandeur that exists on our planet to spend more than a second considering such nonsense……  🙂   Thank God for small favors, eh?   🙂  Sorry, couldn’t resist….

‘Deem not life a thing of consequence. For look at the yawning void of the future, and at that other limitless space, the past.” — Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (121-180 AD) — Meditations, iv, 50
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Mission accomplished, and with some style, by all appearances…. Let’s take a look…. Well, it all worked once, why not again? Plus, all of it remains valid, so, it works for me….. As a bonus, I’m still on schedule for the day’s activities, so I’ll take it, and run…..  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

Phlebotomists do it with their fingers…..

Ffolkes,
Artfully, he dodged the bullet, turning to watch it plow into the wall by his head. Slapping one palm to his forehead, he gave out a great shout, “ki aieeeeeee!”, striking to the left with his other hand, shattering the small bird statue on the pedestal. The bird screamed, and dropped the tiny silver gun….. As entropy increased, gravity grew weak, then strong, tossing the players about the room like ten-pins in a row. Finally, a loud gong sounded, whereupon everyone dutifully trooped into the great hall to hear the daily proclamation from the beloved Leader in Mystery. Headache gone, thanks to the bird’s scream, he joined the parade, knowing he would find what he sought in the great hall…. His quest neared the end, and he could almost taste the cold dish of revenge, demanded by the blood of his murdered master…. Not for nothing was he called, “Pujin, the Merciless, Nearly-Master Killer of the Temple of the Divine Duck…..

Okay, so it fell apart at the end…. I couldn’t keep my tongue planted any longer in my cheek, and had to let it show its nose…. Hmm, that doesn’t quite sound right, does it? Never mind, we’ll pretend none of it happened, and just go on with today’s Pearl, or what passes for the creative process around her on mornings, like this, when I can feel Murphy staring a hole in my back, waiting for me to approach something with paint, or cold water, or poop of some kind, to try to get me to fuck up, so he can hit me with whatever he has in mind….. the asshole…..

You would think that after all this time, he would find someone new and simpler to fool, as I’m getting pretty wise to his games…. He’s a master, of course, at making us think we have him beat, so I don’t fool myself into thinking like that for long, but, a newbie surely ought to be more fun than an old curmudgeon like me who doesn’t even have the wherewithal to get overly upset any more at his shenanigans….. But, then, nobody ever said Murphy was smart, whereas he is often described as an asshole… the asshole….

I note a bit of symmetry in those last two paragraphs, at least at the end…. Too bad we had to subject ourselves to the tender ministrations of a force of nature to achieve that, eh? I’m not complaining about Murphy, as that has been shown to be a futile pastime…. No, I’m just blathering again, trying to fill up space for the intro section, which asked me yesterday to avoid anything fancy or involved today, as it has a mind to take a day off from the strain of coming up with a new way to open up these Pearls each day….. Which is to say, of course, that my own mind is wanting the day off today… I only wish I could indulge that request, but, we’ve got stuff to do….

Well, no, we don’t, that was a lie…. I was just trying to…. well, never mind, a lie is a lie, and there’s no excuse, so I won’t offer any….. I’ll just ignore it, and go on to the daily dive, which, given the crap I’ve created here, could conceivably get a bit dangerous for the uninitiated…. Please watch your step, I have a feeling it may get a bit tricky to navigate today….. Shall we Pearl?…..
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ISMISM:  Belief in any distinctive doctrine, theory or practice. Ismism was   started up in the mid-1980s by a splinter group from “Atheists For Christ”. Ismism meetings gained quick popularity, and Ismism leader Ralph Snider travelled the world promoting his paper “Why I Argue A Lot”. The followers of Ismism are generally agreed to be very confused people. — Daniel Bowen’s TOXIC CUSTARPEDIA

Strangely enough, I believe a Church of ISISM was founded, as well, though not by Mr. Snider, to my knowledge….. What I do know is that the Board of Directors of the Amtrak system are probably charter members of both the church and the movement itself; this much is made plain by the obviously fucktarded business practices as carried out by their employees. The people who run the national train system here in the US are obviously those guys who got the C’s, D’s and F’s in business school, because their employees don’t seem to give much of a shit whether they do their work or not….. Allow me to describe my own experience with the results of their asinine inability to run a viable business….

The train station in Martinez, CA is rather nice, having been built within the last 20 years or so, so it’s still fairly clean, and most everything seems to work, except, of course the vending machines, which are programmed to steal money rather than give snacks. Oh, and there was the snack bar itself, which was closed during the period prior to the train’s arrival, choosing to ignore the 50 or 60 potential customers waiting to board the train… No sense in trying to make TOO much money, now, is there? Seems to be their attitude, because I’ve never seen the place open, no matter what time I’ve come there to meet trains….. They just like to have the open counter there, so people can look at all the stuff they can’t buy….

I’d booked a coach seat for my trip, but was not looking forward to a 14 hour train ride sitting up, so, when I saw that the trains were advertising on-board Wifi, I decided to pay the OUTRAGEOUS amount (more than THREE HUNDRED DOLLARS more than the coach seat, already more than a hundred….. for what is essentially a big bus….) they wanted for a sleeper compartment, the smallest they have, called a “roomette”. It’s almost big enough for a normal sized child to sit in comfortably, but for me, a Boeing 747 wide body, it was somewhat cramped, if I tried to stand up. That was okay, as there was no attendant assigned to my car, as I found out after having to haul my suitcase up a stairway designed to accommodate hobbits, or short, skinny elves, and I needed to sit down to recover from getting on board….

An attendant from the car behind mine showed up after about 20 minutes, when I was informed that she wouldn’t be able to turn down my bed, as she was still working on the car behind her, and wouldn’t be done for a while…. So, if I wanted to lie down to sleep, I had to drop down the upper bunk, get the mattress waiting there, then figure out how to make the two facing chairs turn into a bed to put it on… Well, this was too much for my back to accomplish, so I just tried to crawl up on the bunk to sleep, after the ordeal of trying to remove clothing in a space not big enough to turn around or bend over, once the bunk was down… all without hurting my back…. ‘Twas indeed a small miracle…..Climbing up was another ordeal, whereupon I found the only light control was down below, so rather than try to go down to find it, I tried to sleep a while with the light shining in my face….

Between the light in my eyes, the rocking and noise of the train, and my old bladder, my sleep lasted about 30 minutes…. Getting up, throwing on pants, using the head, and coming back to my tiny little space was so exhausting I decided to just sit up rather than try to get back in the bunk… so, I settled down to sleep in the chair, which I could have done much better in one of the big coach seats, as it turns out….. Sleeping fitfully from about 2 AM until about 6:30, I saw nobody, train staff, or passengers, stirring about…. I sat up, painfully finishing the Pearl I’d worked on for that morning…. painfully, because the alleged table was about the size of a postage stamp, with nowhere to use the mouse, but in the air next to the table…. not terribly useful.

About 0700, I took the computer and walked back to the Parlor Lounge, where the WiFi was supposed to be available, when the car was scheduled to open, at 0700, according to the literature with my ticket. The attendant there was still working on getting the car ready, so I asked him when I might have the service I paid for…. He informed me that it was hooked up, but only worked when the train was in Klamath Falls at the station…. the rest of the trip, the mountains and terrain blocked the signal from the network…. “Brilliant,” I thought, “Not only can I not get my Pearl posted, I have nothing at all to do for the next five and a half hours….”, having not brought a book, thinking the computer, and internet, would entertain me….. SIGH…. I was beginning to believe I had somehow died without noticing, and was now on  the TRAIN TO HELL…..

I went back to my “roomette”… On the way, I saw the young lady ostensibly covering the service in my room, and asked her if I could get the breakfast service in my room, as advertised. She said she would be there “in a few minutes”…. 30 minutes later, she shows up, takes my order, acting as if she was doing me a favor, and disappears, with no word as to when it might be expected…. After about 45 minutes, the train pulled into Klamath Falls, where it sat for about 25 minutes to let off and take on passengers and luggage, allowing passengers to step off the train to have a smoke, if so desired (no smoking allowed anywhere on the train….). As I stepped off to do just that, I noted the attendant performing the same act of vice-maintenance; I said nothing, just finished my smoke and went back to my room, so I wouldn’t miss the food’s arrival…. I needn’t have hurried, as she didn’t come in behind me, as far as I could tell…. I checked, because, as I said, I was starving…..

The train resumed the journey, but, still no breakfast…. After another 45 minutes, and over two hours after I asked to have the food, telling the server I was starving (my exact words….), it still hadn’t arrived…. I got up, pretty steamed, and started toward the dining car, intending to find some food… As I rounded the turn in the car behind me, I saw the young woman approaching with a large paper bag in her hand…. I said, “Aha!”, spun on my heel, and started back to my room, not even looking at her after turning…

As I walked through the door between cars, I growled low in my throat, and hit my walking stick hard on the metal floor to catch my balance, (the floor moves….). and express a bit of frustration… At my room, I stowed the stick, sat, and waited for the food… She arrived and literally dumped the bag on the table, without a word, set down the coffee I’d asked for (two hours before), then, continued down the hall, and down the stairs to the conductor’s office below, where she apparently complained about my hitting the stick on the floor….

As I was trying to get my food out of the bag and fit on the tiny little table, the conductor appeared, and said I had been “threatening” to the attendant…. Well, at this point, I had had enough, so I proceeded to let my PTSD have its way, and treated the conductor to a full blown, tears flowing, crying rant, detailing my miserable night, the worse morning, and my intent to sue the rail system for everything they had….

I told him I had paid less money to stay at a Five Star Hotel, (the truth), that I was disabled, and had to carry my own luggage on board, spent a miserable night without a bed, that I had received NONE of the services for which I had paid over three hundred dollars, and I was now going to try to eat my COLD sausage and eggs with my COLD coffee, and he should just leave me alone before I totally lost control…. Having ranted in full out crying mode for about five full minutes at that point, I sat back, looked out the window, and ignored him until he went away…..

Well, I think I got the message across, to him, at least, as  a bit later, he came back, apologized for my troubles, and tried to make nice for the company…. He couldn’t do anything about the ticket price, of course, (note the eyebrows wiggling up and down…..) but he suggested I complain and request a refund, because the management needed to hear about this kind of thing…. He stated he would be talking with the supervisor of the attendant for her lack of sensitivity and laziness, and offered to help me get my bag downstairs when we arrived in an hour or so…. His attitude, correct as it was, only served to point up the contrast with the service I should have received, and didn’t, in any respect…..

Fortunately for all, my friend was there to meet me, and whisk me away before I could devise a way to torment the office staff at the Eugene station, or blow somebody up like I’d been blown for the last 14 hours…. Instead, we went and had lunch, and I was able to decompress enough to enjoy the rest of my visit with my buddy and his partner, Cyn….  The wine helped, for sure…..

This rant has helped a bit, as well…. though, I have to say, in looking back over it, I was nicer than I should have been, and much nicer to them than they were to me…. This is also going to help, because I intend to include a link to this Pearl in the letter I send to them, eventually, with the expressed hope that the tale goes viral on the Net, and my intent to publish it as widely as I can, to start a whispering, word-of-mouth campaign as a message to them to either clean up their act, or get out of business…. I’m not going to settle for anything less…. They’ve already lost my business for the rest of my life, and I had intended to travel by train a lot…. Now, that is NOT going to happen, not without some kind of assurance that stuff like this doesn’t happen again, to anyone…..

“The only thing wrong with doing nothing is that you never know when you’re done.” — The Stovall’s Law of negative inaction
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Composing the above mild rant tired me out, not unsurprisingly…. Before I started writing so much on a daily basis, I hadn’t realized that PTSD, as one  of its characteristics that comes down on the negative side, can make it tiring to think about old stuff that was of a traumatic nature, due to the tendency for the emotional content to recreate itself, strongly, generally causing an overflow of tears and embarrassment (I know, it’s okay to cry, but doing it in public places is somewhat of a facer, what?….. Not exactly the image I’m trying to create on the streets…..). Any who, I’m fagged, though having only been up about two hours….

A fresh poem isn’t ready, so I’m going back to the archives, but will add a fresh haiku, written this morning, before pasting in the older poem…..  As every day this month, this is for the April National Poetry Writing Month Challenge, with the updates to be found here:  http://www.napowrimo.net/ (I still don’t know if I’m doing this right, but, oh well….)

Haiku:

Bright sun rises up,
glory against a blue sky.
Joy is now, today.

~~ gigoid

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

A Failure to Germinate

Marking the days in elements of sad disarray
only holds me thrall, as I laugh while I may.
With cold, hard hands so impatient and cruel
pulling me to this vale of tears, a pathetic old fool.

Feelings sit silent, cast in shadows and light
breaking forth to implicate such vengeful might.
Just below the surface they patiently hide
to sally forth bravely, colors bright as they ride.

Tears and pain transform valued assets in hand
while comfort and serenity retreat to a far land.
Bold, bright patterns of hope garnish my ruinous state
until reality enters, full of disdainful portions of hate.

I sort out the illustrious measures of vision gone mild
only to find them transformed, now vicious and wild.
In my deepest desires I find myself calloused and cold
with faithless advocates whose souls have been sold.

My search finds little to support any hope of relief
far too much time has passed to bolster such belief.
The sad becomes real, and real becomes unfounded
until flights of such fancy are all dead, and grounded.

Nature has informed me of the newly hatched crime
that reality has boasted of proudly, time after time.
The last answer we think of is always the best
as we come to terms with fate, our hope at rest.

~~ gigoid

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In re: freshness, since the poem section is only half and half, I’ll put together an old-school pearl for this last section today…. It’s a bit shorter, and takes less time than another rant…. Here is one with a very obscure, but valid, point…. which, of course, is left as an exercise for the Gentle Reader….. (that’s you…..) ….. Enjoy!

But Faith, fanatic Faith, once wedded fast
To some dear falsehood, hugs it to the last.

— Thomas Moore (1779-1852) — Lalla Rookh, The Veiled Prophet of Khorassan

‘Tis not the fairest form that holds The mildest, purest soul within;
‘Tis not the richest plant that holds The sweetest fragrance in.

— Dawes

“Human life is but a series of footnotes to a vast, obscure, unfinished masterpiece.” — Vladimir Nabokov

“In God We Trust.” I don’t believe it would sound any better if it were true.” — Mark Twain

“Imagination is the one weapon in the war against reality.” — Jules de Gaultier

“It is human nature to think wisely & act foolishly.” — Anatole France

He ne’er is crown’d
With immortality, who fears to follow
Where airy voices lead.

— John Keats (1795-1821) — Endymion, Book ii
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Okay, why don’t y’all sit back and cogitate a moment while I go back and punch this up….. Not too shabby, I think…. I may hit out at Amtrak again some day soon; I don’t think I quite got all of my anger at them resolved. No worries, everything comes in the fullness of time, so I’ve heard….  😉

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

Chutzpah is potentially a costly indulgence….

Ffolkes,
Eyes grew heavy in the overly warm dining room, glazing into insensibility, as the world’s second most boring speech droned on interminably. To Darcy Simmons it seemed she fought with the Sandman himself to keep her eyes open, as she owlishly blinked, trying to wake up, though for the life of her, she couldn’t think of why. “There isn’t enough money in the world worth this,” she thought, “What was I thinking!” She gazed around her, seeking an excuse of any kind that would make it okay to run screaming from the room, when her eyes fell upon……

I know…. it’s rude to leave people hanging like that. You’ll just have to get over it, as my imagination just experienced a massive fail. What with the weird muscle spasms that are currently making my left leg twitch like a vulcanized frog, the incipient relatively high pain level we are ignoring, and the general state of affairs here, it isn’t particularly surprising, just inconvenient, and a PISSER OF MAJOR PROPORTION!!!  You know I’m upset when I use three exclamation points, knowing one will do…. It is going to make for a difficult morning, I can see already, and I’m a less than happy camper at the moment….

Perhaps, though, I should try to apply some of this wisdom I so often tout here. The vicissitudes of life come to burden all of us at one time or another, and it’s foolish to think it won’t happen to us, just because it hasn’t happened for a while. (I love that word, “vicissitudes”…. a wonderful word to describe such a vile, distasteful group of experiences, with just the right sense of disapproval, yet without giving up any of its elegance….) Patience, tolerance, courage, strength, all are qualities whose praise I’ve sung, so it would be a good thing, no doubt, if I were to take advantage of all that I’ve written to benefit my own self….. helpfully providing both statistical evidence in support of the wisdom that is offered, and a good example of its effectiveness in reality. Bonus!

Okay, we’ll give it a try…. I can ignore the muscle spasms fairly easily; they’re just another physical anomaly, which by this time should be fairly common, and familiar, and therefore of no concern. I’ve already taken an extra pain pill, and it should help in a little while, so I can stop fighting the pain (not as easy as it sounds, but, doable….). As for the rest of what is going on around here, it all falls under the category of things about which I can do nothing. As such, I can only take the advice of Epictetus, and accept that there are things that are not within my control, thus opening the way to enjoy the result of such wisdom…..

Okay, so here I am, in pain, (fuck! It hurts!…. Some days, it just doesn’t want to cooperate, you know?….), but courageously whipping myself to continue writing, mainly because nothing else seems to work, so I may as well get something done….. I’m applying the wisdom, but it doesn’t seem to be helping much….. I guess it’s just going to be one of those days when I can count on my pain to stay at a high level, and my depression to keep me in the proverbial dumps all day, or at least until I can persuade myself to give it up and get on with life. It’s hard, though, as I usually tell myself to “fuck off” in such cases…. I’m not a nice guy, sometimes…

Hey, at least it made the intro section fairly easy to write… lots of subject matter, even if it is all a bit on the dreary side. Ah well, I’m entering that state of mind where my only response, to anything and everything, is fairly certain to sound something like “Fuck it!… and the white horse it rode in on!….” I’m going to take a chance here, and dive into the dB, & see if there is anything that can push through the haze surrounding my brain to stimulate a rant, or an old school pearl, or maybe a poem…. One never knows, do one?  Shall we Pearl?…..
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“Life is a great surprise. I do not see why death should not be an even greater one.” — Vladimir Nabokov, quoted in “Time”, 1981

Well, Vladimir certainly nailed it in one! This fits right in with what I believe, which, though it has little if anything in common with popular religious views of the afterlife, is nonetheless just as optimistic in outlook as any of those rather exceedingly ornate, highly unlikely scenarios. In my world view, the mind, and consciousness, whatever it may be, is equivalent to energy in our universe, and as such, should logically have the same characteristic as all other forms of energy we have thus far discovered, to wit: it cannot be destroyed, only changed in form.

Each of the world’s religions has their own version of what happens after we die, and all of them are made with the assumption of the presence of their idea of God as the underlying reason for all that occurs. This, while logical, to a small degree (one has to accept some rather specious assumptions in order to follow a logical path to the concept of a God….), mostly reminds me of a small boy walking past a graveyard, whistling loudly to scare off his own fears…. It’s mostly wishful thinking, as far as I can see, according to all the physical evidence available. The proponents of these religious philosophies all make the same basic error in their logical constructs, one that is so basic, they can’t even see it….

That error lies in assuming that Man, or a man, being a mortal being, limited in perception and understanding by their own physical envelope, is capable of either understanding, or describing, what is a God. If one assumes that an entity is capable of creating an entire universe, I don’t think it is logical to assume that we, as part of that creation, would have the capability of comprehending either the process involved, or the being that carried it out. The mere fact that, in order to try to comprehend God at all, we need to try to give him first, a sex, then a visual identity, is the first and most telling clue that we are wrong, right from the start…..

The next clue as to our inability to know God is the behaviors that Man ascribes to Him. In just about every religious book I’ve read, the actions of most of the Gods therein reminded me more of a surly, selfish teenager than of a God. I don’t know, it just seems a bit illogical to have the creator of the entire universe behave worse than a cranky two year old that needs a nap, if He doesn’t get the fawning worship he so desperately needs. It sounds more like Benito Mussolini, or Madonna, to me, than it does like God….

This doesn’t mean, though, that there is no hope of redemption (though I’m not sure from what I’m being redeemed… the idea of original sin is pretty much a hoax, you know, put in the Christian dogma to help manipulate and control people….), or of life after death. The universe is actually a quite beautiful place without the concept of God hanging about, getting in the way…. And this viewpoint allows one to appreciate life much more fully, knowing that we are the ones responsible for making our lives worth living…

Everybody dies, and everyone lives after death, as far as I can see from a logical standpoint. I think that what Vladimir says is a good way to look at things, as it acknowledges that responsibility for our own happiness, and does so without implying the existence of a need to do so in hope of a reward for good behavior, as is the case in those religious institutions who wish to control people here in this life, with the threat of punishment or reward in the next. We can assume control of our own lives, including our own happiness, or, we can allow others to think for us, and accept the chains and limitations of living according to someone else’s ideas of what is real….

The saddest part of all this? Most folks never even realize they have a choice in the matter. From infancy, they’ve been brainwashed to believe what they’re told, and all-too-few of us manage to escape the bonds of slavery that are placed on our minds early in life. Most folks just accept what they are told by anyone in authority, and get very comfortable in their chains, since they don’t have to think for themselves at all….. They never realize just how large and beautiful the universe really is, because they’ve accepted the blinders they wear, and refuse to even acknowledge that they wear them at all….

It sure makes me glad for whatever happened to keep me from falling for that whole scam; I can’t say exactly what first clued me in to the facts, but, I’m very, very happy that it did. I can’t see going through my life filled with fear of what might happen afterward; it’s too much fun enjoying all the beauty and grandeur that exists on our planet to spend more than a second considering such nonsense……  🙂   Thank God for small favors, eh?   🙂  Sorry, couldn’t resist….

‘Deem not life a thing of consequence. For look at the yawning void of the future, and at that other limitless space, the past.” — Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (121-180 AD) — Meditations, iv, 50
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It has been awhile since I read The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayam, so finding a small piece of it in Smart Bee gave me a hankering to run through it again. It’s a long piece, though, and can take a while to get through. In addition, it takes up a lot of space…. so, to avoid both those problems, today I’m providing a simple link to the poem, on PoemHunter.com, where I find a lot of what goes into this section…. A very large amount of the world’s best poetry and poets are to be found there, and I enjoy the simplicity of their interface… Any who, here, for your reading pleasure….

http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/the-rubaiyat-of-omar-khayyam/

Enjoy!…..
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“A power has risen up in the government greater than the people themselves, consisting of many and various and powerful interests, combined into one mass, and held together by the cohesive power of the vast surplus in the banks.”  — Johann L. Uhland (1787-1862) — Speech, May 27, 1836

Mr. Uhland is correct in his observation, if a bit slow in making it. The usurpation of the US Constitution and the Bill of Rights began within moments of its adoption as law, and has been continuing on a daily basis ever since. In the fight against that usurpation, a major battle was lost sometime around the middle of the 19th century, around 1836 or so, when a corrupt federal judge, at the insistence of his corporate masters, approved a legal decision that gave corporations the same rights as people, opening the door to further machinations by which the banks and corporations could, have, and continue to, steal from the public without consequence…..

Today, there is a new push to reform some of the laws that enable the moneylenders to control society as they do; the concept of corporate personhood is under fire by an enraged public, tired of the endless cycle of working to try to get ahead, only to find that there is no path visible to go anywhere but down. As that astute social philosopher, George Carlin, pointed out, they (the bankers and corporate rogues) don’t want a populace capable of critical thinking; they just want workers smart enough to operate the machines, but not smart enough to wonder why they are doing so for so little compensation.

Modern technology has, thanks to the Internet, made keeping this issue out of the public eye impossible, and the corporate stranglehold on society is being challenged much more often. In one sense, this new found spread of information is holding back the needed changes, as a lot of energy is dissipated in the public discourse that might otherwise build up into the kind of frustration that leads to revolution, and societal upheaval. But, it is also making it much harder for the miscreants who want to control everyone else keep their machinations out of the public eye. There are too many holes for them to plug….

The power these self-serving assholes hold over the rest of us is accustomed to being able to hide from public scrutiny, and I’m sure there will be attempts made to curtail some of the information they are concerned about making common knowledge. In fact, according to some of my latest email updates from the EFF (Electronic Frontier Foundation), there are a number of bills trying to get forced through Congress, without public discussion when possible, that are intended to limit the freedom of speech that is currently unrestricted, for the most part.

A recent setback occurred when an honest judge (i.e., one that stayed bought….) rewarded his corporate masters with a decision regarding cell phones that is a serious threat to a number of technological freedoms…. In other words, the fight continues today, and it is just as important today as it was back in 1776, and 1836, when the battle was joined…

The Beloved Ruling Class, and their corporate owners, will do all they can to limit the public’s awareness of what they are doing, and they will continue to try to erode the rights of the common man. They have, by their historical behavior, and their current actions, indicated their intent quite clearly… and that intent is to arrange matters so that what they want is law, and the rest of us can go fuck ourselves silly…. because they don’t care. These people are not concerned with anything that does not serve their own ends, and will lie, cheat, steal, and kill to maintain their power…. This is not supposition, this is fact, based on history, and on observation of current events….

I guess the only real question to be answered is, how long are the rest of us going to allow them to have their way? They are killing us all with their indifference to anything but their own purposes, and we are letting them do it.

Myself, I’m getting a bit tired of it, and would like to see society become a bit more active in the resistance shown to the chicanery toward the rest of us, all perpetrated by the Powers That Be… up to and including revolution…. But, then, that’s me…. I’m a bit impatient, and I’m tired of their shit….. I’m hoping more people are getting that way, as our only hope of survival in the long run is to kick the bastards out…..

“All the world over, I will back the masses against the classes.” — William Ewart Gladstone (1809-1898)
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Well, there you go…. I was a bit concerned, after writing the intro; it was a tough one, and didn’t bode well for the rest of the Pearl. But, apparently, once I found the right pearls for discussion, I had plenty to say, and it flowed out fairly well…. Well enough that polishing took only a few minutes…. I am happy to pronounce this Pearl “done”….

Happier than I can say, really, as it has distracted me from the pain for a good hour and a half now…. Hopefully, I can find enough to continue to distract myself long enough, and get through the day to tomorrow…. Just gotta stay focused on that concept, and I’m good to go….  Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


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

gigoid

dozer3