I know that many of you out there in Readerville have the same fondness for ferrets as I do; what’s not to like, right? Playful, friendly and cuddly, save those moments of viciousness and insane hyperactivity that are such a charming part of their nature. Wonderful varmint control experts, aside from their tendency to leave half-eaten carcasses around the living room. And in those bad times when the fish aren’t biting, they make a great casserole with some garlic, macaroni, and some lovely Pinot Noir…..
Only joking, of course…. they taste terrible! Besides, there’s too much money in training them for ferret-legging contests over in Wales; a well-trained legging ferret will bring in cash for years to come, every six months, or more often in recessions. It’s a limited market, I have to admit, but consistent once one is well-established as a respected trainer….. nothing like a vicious, hyperactive ferret in the pants to create that shopping frenzy in the Welsh economy…..
On a lighter note, there were only 30 emails this morning; is everyone on vacation? It’s too early for school to be out, and I didn’t hear of any widespread Internet outages….. I guess the ghosts of inspiration are refusing to manifest; maybe we should put out a saucer of milk or something?….. ah, screw it…let’s go Pearl…..
“All riches come from iniquity, and unless one has lost, another cannot gain. Hence that common opinion seems to be very true, “the rich man is unjust, or the heir to an unjust one.” Opulence is always the result of theft, if not committed by the actual possessor, than by his predecessor.” — St. Jerome (340?-420)
So, it seems that the problems we are facing in today’s society are not new. Not when it is clear from this little pearl from St. Jerome that we are not the first society in history to make note of the gap between the two ends of the fiscal scale. Let’s see, 2012 minus 420 = 1592, which means that the state we are now observing has been present and worsening for more than a millennium and a half, without any significant changes in the interim period to indicate improvement. In fact, all the evidence leads one to the unfortunate conclusion that those who are at the top of the heap, so to speak, have solidified and enhanced their own positions, while allowing the rest of the world to fall ever further behind in its ability to command the resources at hand.
It makes one wonder, (well, it makes me wonder, anyway) why there have not been more social uprisings than history describes…. the only answer I can find any evidence for is that those in power have learned how to maintain the status quo without the rest of humanity being aware of their machinations; if it was common knowledge just how oppressive and callously indifferent the rich are to the rest of us, there wouldn’t be enough of them left to bury……
Me, I’m hoping for a new renaissance among the downtrodden, a new awareness of their subordinate position created by the Internet’s unlimited store of information, a new factor, one that was never before available to the general masses. There is a critical flash point to human interactions, just like in nuclear fission; when critical mass is achieved (in this case, critical mass is increased by social awareness) the explosion is more powerful than can be simply imagined, (witness our own Revolutionary War, and more recently, the Arab Spring…) and the face of Reality itself will assume a brand-new configuration, one that promises to be at the least very different, if not completely rational….. I expect it will get ugly for a while, but ultimately, things should be a lot better for everyone, not just the privileged few…..
“Consistency is contrary to nature, contrary to life. The only completely consistent people are dead.” — Aldous Huxley (1904-1963)
Strange, isn’t it? People seem to regard this tendency in themselves, and others, with suspicion and mistrust; I see most everyone alive spending an inordinate amount of time attempting to INCREASE consistency in their lives, to make everything just so, predictably consistent, without surprises to mess up the tranquility that a good set of blinders provides. Rather than embracing the wondrous flexibility, diversity, and delightful unpredictability of Life, they stifle their impulses, refuse to acknowledge changes staring them in the face, and in general, try to surround themselves with a cocoon of denial regarding most of Life’s most bountiful experiences.
The hard part for me in watching this in other folks is asking “Why?” (Of course, we all know asking “Why” is a fruitless pastime; the Universe has consistently (one raised brow….) refused to answer this question since the beginning of Time…). Really, though, I just don’t get it….. people prefer dark to light; they make the choice to avoid thinking, about anything of importance or relevance to their own existence, just because it feels like hard work (they never get that the more they think, the easier it gets…. sheesh!), or because Grandma said it was evil….. either excuse seems to be acceptable to them. Rather than taking a chance on happiness, they prefer to embrace their fear and denial, telling themselves that happiness is a lie, an illusion, a tool of the devil. If God had wanted us to be happy, he would have given us a sense of humor…. oh, wait, he did, didn’t he? Well, I guess that’s just one more sign of God’s inconsistency….. Strange, isn’t it?…..
A wise man who stands firm is a statesman, a foolish man who stands firm is a catastrophe. — our old friend, Anonymous
“A kiss is a lovely trick designed by nature to stop speech when words become superfluous.” — Ingrid Bergman
What a lovely thought! …. I don’t think I want to clutter this up with a long discussion. This is more the kind of thing you want to close your eyes and consider for a moment, then put away the good feeling and the little smile that graced your face for a moment, and get on with the day, a little lighter of heart…. just a little gift from the universe, no charge…..
Ill habits gather by unseen degrees,–
As brooks make rivers, rivers run to seas.
— John Dryden (1631-1700) — Ovid, Metamorphoses, Book xv, The Worship of Aesculapius, Line 155
Here we have a short example of exactly the reason I like poetry so much….. In a mere two lines, whether part of a greater piece, or standing alone, this couplet demonstrates beautiful command of language, powerful imagery, and a deep understanding of human nature. No one who reads this, and lets it enter into their basic world-view, can avoid gaining both a life-long tool against sloth and ignorance, and a wider degree of comprehension of all men and women, while concurrently increasing their store of value experiences, and their appreciation of beauty in all its guises. Win-win, in every sense of the phrase…. and tasty, too!…..
GNU, n. An animal of South Africa, which in its domesticated state resembles a horse, a buffalo and a stag. In its wild condition it is something like a thunderbolt, an earthquake and a cyclone.
A hunter from Kew caught a distant view
Of a peacefully meditative gnu,
And he said: “I’ll pursue, and my hands imbrue
In its blood at a closer interview.”
But that beast did ensue and the hunter it threw
O’er the top of a palm that adjacent grew;
And he said as he flew: “It is well I withdrew
Ere, losing my temper, I wickedly slew
That really meritorious gnu.”
— Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”
🙂 Even serious, sober types such as myself in Pearl mode just wanna have fun……
Today’s Pearl of Virtual Wisdom has been brought to you by a Grant from the International Foundation for Fostering Social Unrest and Fomenting Revolution Among the Avant-Garde (Grant Parker, if you must know; an old friend and co-conspirator). Any questions, comments, or critical remarks are the sole responsibility of the Reader, and will be cheerfully received in the first two instances, and cheerfully ignored in the case of the latter. Should you find yourself, while ingesting this material, seized by an irrational desire to get naked and dance, feel free. Just be sure to take videos, and share with the rest of us…… it’s only fair, I showed you mine…..
My supply of witty remarks and pointed inferences is getting a bit low, so we will leave you now, to go henceforth into the day, ever vigilant for signs of Truth, Justice, and Beauty….. May the Source be with you…. Y’all take care out there…..
Sometimes I sits and thinks,
I just sits.