Just Don’t Think About It

Of course “it” will get you down if you keep thinking about it.

What’s this shit?

The things you can change. Epictetus (circa 65 c.e.), a Greek slave, is often quoted, usually without attribution, on such matters.  You may know it by its most familiar incarnation: The Serenity Prayer. Epictetus represents the more stoic side dreamt of in philosophy, a view from the complement.  The other side of the coin features the much better known Greek philosopher: Epicurus. Eat, drink and live as comfortably as possible.

Out-of-Sight-Clutter-Quote

A coin has two sides, you won’t encounter many one-sided coins in the agora. Any of the way, imagine a coin with the names of those two philosophers, may each take a side.

Epictetus Epicurus.

There’s nothing new under the sun, even Earthly extinction events; in fact, we live and love in the shadow of extinction possibility number six. The sun abides however. No wonder so many worship. Sol so.

We will return to tet and cur following these words from our sp*ns*r.

We’re whispering because Bill is hard-of-hearing (we have switched off closed captioning too). He can’t hear us. Please don’t spill the beans. It’s just us, just us. 

Who are we? We are an apocryphal (in your dreams!) den of con-artisans who conspire to keep the population glued to a shiny entertaining crystal, one with innumerable facets, like a diamond formed from coal under heat and pressure — a distillation of a rich biomass: a rapid metamorphosis: life to death at nearly the same time, and without a funeral service. Ironically that biomass is organic matter long dead but now continually pressed into the stuff of instant energy, such as coal, such as oil. Bringing it to the surface quickens carbon dioxide accumulation in Earth’s thin atmospheric. Lungs like yours breathe it. Take a deep one and hold it.

Don’t forget: we don’t exist. We’re more gravy than grave. Relax and enjoy, enjoy and relax, relax and repeat….

…Hold on a second. Did I fall asleep during a nightmarish commercial? I don’t feel very well, actually quite nauseous. What the freak?

die_verwandlung___metamorfosis_by_jalpal-d4ab0yq

Als Gregor Samsa eines Morgens aus unruhigen Träumen erwachte, fand er sich in seinem Bett zu einem ungeheueren Ungeziefer verwandelt. Er lag auf seinem panzerartig harten Rücken und sah, wenn er den Kopf ein wenig hob, seinen gewölbten, braunen, von bogenförmigen Versteifungen geteilten Bauch, auf dessen Höhe sich die Bettdecke, zum gänzlichen Niedergleiten bereit, kaum noch erhalten konnte. Seine vielen, im Vergleich zu seinem sonstigen Umfang kläglich dünnen Beine flimmerten ihm hilflos vor den Augen.

One morning, as Gregor Samsa was waking up from anxious dreams, he discovered that in bed he had been changed into a monstrous verminous bug. He lay on his armour-hard back and saw, as he lifted his head up a little, his brown, arched abdomen divided up into rigid bow-like sections. From this height the blanket, just about ready to slide off completely, could hardly stay in place. His numerous legs, pitifully thin in comparison to the rest of his circumference, flickered helplessly before his eyes.

Thanks for reading.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Seeing Eye to Eye

In regione caecorum rex est luscus — a proverb from at least as early as 1500, authored by Desiderius Erasmus. A short story by H. G. Wells.

illustration of 3 reaching hands to nunez
The guys without the eyes are trying to locate those two roundish objects  in Nuñez’ face. They feel like peeled grapes, perhaps the source of the hallucinations that cloud his mind and prevent Nuñez from fitting in. Would enucleation (surgical removal of an eye or two) correct his vision?

My father once mentioned to me that a curious aspect of growing old is a realization that you no longer fit contemporary society, and that immortality wouldn’t help you socially adapt. My dad was a sagacious fellow, he often told me that he would rather be healthy and rich than sick and poor. A little sage makes the dressing. That’s what I think.

I didn’t wait for old age to know that feeling of disorientation, confusion and re-disorientation that the inexplicable brings. The only thing 100% predictable in life is the unexpected.

quote-in-the-land-of-the-blind-the-one-eyed-man-is-a-hallucinating-idiot-for-he-sees-what-marshall-mcluhan-35-84-51

Let me tell you about my friend from Edinburgh, from that town north of Hadrian’s Wall that isn’t Glasgow.  Well, he met my son around 1981, said son was going on three — it’s what happened to earthlings born in 1978.

Any of the way, that Scot spent some time with my boy and proclaimed that he liked him because the youngster recognized the essential absurdity of life. Recognizer of essential absurdity, ‘twould make a fine line on a business card, would it not?

These are the confessions of a guilty bystander, to borrow a few words from Thomas Merton, a philosopher I heartily commend to your attention. He died young and he died tragically, but his works are immortal and always fresh. I wish to confess generational theft: squandering limited resources for a lifetime and lifestyle of self-absorbtion by elders who do know, or should know, far better. If the glove fits, don’t acquit. I must remember to have “generational thief” included in a future obituary.

We’re supposed to leave the planet better than it was when we inherited it. You don’t improve a tightly shared planet by chowing down on the products of animal husbandry, that’s what I believe.  No eyeball-equipped planeteer should consume similarly eyeball-equipped planeteers for the dining pleasure that meats you from the inside out.

You don’t just have a law passed that decrees husbanded animals as free of pain, so that you can just get on with it all legal-like by saying “So there! Now let us serve man.”

You’ve inspired us to write ad-copy, Bill —

“The only grass our cows eat spring from the fruited plain.”

“Our contented cows eat only amber waves of grain.”

Let’s talk about the creatures who developed eyes during the Cambrian Era. Eyes improve your odds of surviving, you see something dangerous and you get out of the way, you see something nutritious, like an apple, you eat it and you’re better for it.

james.herriot.soul.animals

Creatures with eyes also possess a highly developed nervous system, complete with complex nuanced nerves from brain to brainstem to tailbone, from tailbone to brainstem to brain. Back and forth, forth and back. Creatures with eyes are not interested in ending up on a plate next to peas and potatoes, or transformed into Andy Capp’s Hot Lardy Fries and Pinker Pork Rinds, Perky Pig Ears? Would you?

Thanks for reading.

 

“In Praise of Idleness” and Veganism

40 years ago I read Bertrand Russell’s “In Praise of Idleness,” an essay he published in 1932. The piece was already 40 years old when I got around to reading it — 40 years later I reread this essay, perhaps under visitation of some Jungian synchronicity. Reading it this morning allowed my imagination to stagger — where have I read a better statement on redressing an injustice: the theft of productivity gains? My tentative answer — “nowhere more succinctly.”

First of all : what is work? Work is of two kinds : 
first, altering the position of matter at or near the 
earth’s surface relative to other such matter ; 
second, telling other people to do so. The first kind 
is unpleasant and ill paid; the second is pleasant 
and highly paid. The second kind is capable of 
indefinite extension: there are not only those who 
give orders, but those who give advice as to what 
orders should be given. Usually two opposite kinds 
of advice are given simultaneously by two organized 
bodies of men; this is called politics. The skill 
required for this kind of work is not knowledge of 
the subjects as to which advice is given, but know- 
ledge of the art of persuasive speaking and writing, 
i.e. of advertising.

Source

I’ve alluded to Russell’s essay “Nice People” several times now. Actually it’s becoming a commonplace theme here.

I checked out the marvelously titled “Why I am not a Christian” from a West German library in 1971 Giessen — the librarian was not, not, not in the least amused. Not.

Das ist Blödsinn. Totaler Blödsinn.

how.to.love.and.eat.animals

I took up my practice of living iconoclastically shortly (about ten minutes) after graduating from high school — I’d completed 12 years of mandatory Catholic education and needed to discover why free thinkers were so despised by non-freethinkers.

By my estimation vegans are free thinkers who believe that all sentient beings are fellow free thinkers, Genesis 1:26 notwithstanding. Being a vegan just may qualify you as iconoclast. Hold that thought a moment. I’ll be right back…

Hey, it does qualify you as iconoclast.

26 Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals,[a] and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”

I am convinced that veganism is the gentlest means for solving the ever unaddressed need for addressing global warming. It might even nip a certain extinction event in the bud: The Anthropocene. Is it possible that 7 billion homo sapiens consuming 70 billion animals (from fur to marrow) annually — a practice sanctioned by most religious institutions — might warrant more than a shrug?

Look here, Bill. Humans are created in the image of their maker. Read Genesis 1:26. ’nuff said.

Today’s bumper sticker suggestion:

Meatism kills. Veganism nourishes.

Was Venus once a lush planet? Are we preparing to become a one such once-lush planet?

Thanks for reading.

 

 

Languages, Escape Velocity and Bigly Lies

Learning a second or 3rd or 4th language is like escaping the gravity of your native land. You probe about in another way of being, of thinking, of observing. Better still — if you’ve the inclination — learn another tongue via a second or third language. Meet the stranger in a place foreign to each.

I am so grateful for my Palestinian student who decided to learn German via English, without recourse to his native Arabic. He inspired me to do the same — learn Arabic by way of German. “arabisch lernen”

arabisch.lernen

German from the baby steps to fluency. The magic of YouTube brings me teachers who speak their mother’s Arabic in a German-speaking land. I studied in Germany for a year and a half. The other international students joined me to prepare for lessons conducted in German. Japanese medical students already knew anatomical terms, because their forefathers carried it back to Japan — including decades as fellow Axis members. Gray’s Anatomy with German body parts

Some lessons I’ve learned

Iranian students taught me about Savak and their Shah many years before the Revolution of 1979. Krupp established large industrial site in that Persian land. An industrial giant since the 16th Century. A family tradition, Blut und Eisen.

Propaganda relies upon endlessly repeated mistranslations, designed to obfuscate. Weaponized language to serve hidden agendas, to move geopolitical stakes through sabotage, bigotry, racism, straw men, false flags, pacification, liquidation; in other words, chicanery of any convenient kind. Whatever works. No questions asked.

Walls visible and invisible. Sow the seeds of discontent to ignite anger. Divide and conquer. British imperialists deliberately provoked Sunni and Shia rivalries by locating them within an arbitrary borderline. Think of it as double solitary confinement. A technique that works wonders: encourage each to fight the other over differences deep as the empire gathers spoils of conquest, to the victor go the value subtracted.

History remembered is myth created by the most talented liars. Every American recites the same short soundbites: flag-shaded collective memories. Memorized lies to mask disquieting truth. 1,000 memorized lies. Cherrypick and pass on. Manufacture your destiny as something somehow manifest by a deity for your outrageous fortune. Cloying spoilings.

shadid_lewis
Kresta and Spencer find a convenient fool

Conduct experiments on war fodder soldiers and increase your “intelligence.” Handbooks written by Chinese military master torturers were translated verbatim and reapplied in Guantanamo — word by evil word.

Accuse Cuba of human rights violations while torturing prisoners on Cuban soil. Announce bounties — turn in someone you hate, an enemy or a randomly selected person, a stranger. Get paid for lying about an innocent neighbor. Extraordinary rendition is spuriously twisted language designed by twisted authority to mask torture by proxy. Look the other way. Justify everything. Celebrate the patriotic art of bigly deals. Endless war for endless profit. Drop MOABS and cut a purchase order for replacement MOABS.

This morning I read a piece from Mark Chmiel’s blog — Mistake. Dark serendipity in the same tone and key. Thank you, Mark.

And

Thanks for reading.

Veganism, Meatism and Freneticism

It’s a good day to weigh value systems and lifestyles.

Sounds judgmental, Bill. A waste of time and a waste of electrons. You know very well that we’re too busy and far too important to read your screed, yet you insist on inviting us to your frugal table. Why do that?

I don’t know.

ConsumeristVeganism

Freneticism. An active lifestyle, branded on gross national consumption — consumers playing a complacent role toward a dismal goal.

Michael Ende’s classic novel Momo explains it well. Ende knows his Zeitdieben (time thieves) — those functionaries  who siphon the productivity of persons more innocent, more gentle. Quite a fine book, if you have the time.

Do con artists ever have a hidden agenda? Just an idle question.

momo.zeitdiebe
from: Vegan Warrior Princesses Attack

May we remind you, Bill, there is more money in beef than in beets. Jobs from sea to befouled sea, that’s what we’re talking about. Filling waste-management positions, artery pharmaceutical rep salaries, butcheries and slaughterers, belly futurists, hide sellers, Boeuf Taco artisans.

Meatism: a lifestyle based on flesh and blood, unfertilized eggs, calf milk, buttered bacon, Snausages®  all nicely appointed on a dinner plate. Marketers know their play-books, how to drone a message into your psyche, how to grant you the illusion of independent thought —  you are the one doing the thinking. Something to manufacture a lasting crave, powerful enough to drive you from refrigerator and pantry to the supermarket and back. Where are the car keys? The 12-hour Energy Boosters®?

Consume, c o n s u m e, C O N S U M E, c o n s u m e, consume. 

The lab gals and guys have skills honed to fashion biochemical ions that stimulate taste receptors and simulate well-being. Palm oil fuels a munch crave. Be they chips or be they crisps — an open bag is an empty bag. Palm oil substitutes for hydrogenated oil, but threatens rainforests.

You’re a do-gooder and a poison-ivy hugger, Bill. Let us buy you an ivy salad. Our treat.

Buy another bag. And aren’t you clever now  — buy a bigger bag or two, or five. Buy ten bags and save ten dollars. The more you buy, the more you save.

Wow. Where are the car keys? The 12-hour Energy®?

A dinner plate is a wasteland, absent a meat entree to grace it, my friend. We did not evolve to nibble bunny salads and sip miso soup. Let us tell you about tired emaciated vegans. God made animals for us to domesticate and to eat. F-ing cows were not created in God’s image. We are not Bottom-headed — and we’re not bottom feeders. 

Of course.

Thanks for reading.

 

 

 

Vegan to Veganism — the Followup

N.B. This post was inspired by a very kind reader’s comment on my previous post. It’s my way of thanking an anonymous reader for the inspiration to create this article 🙂

I often add deprecating words of imagined critics to challenge my writing — they appear as italicized green-text segments. This time I turn those naysayers away and add complimentary words to complement the genuine words of a non-naysayer. 🙂

Thanks for this Bill! But my curiosity is not yet fully quenched! How did your family and friends take your change?

Though the green sheep in the family, I was blessed, or kindly ignored, by family and friends. They have allowed me the space and penchant to follow the way of the iconoclast. Tilt damned windmill! I try to reciprocate in kind, but when you stand up for eliminating THE entree from the plate 24/7, you must expect onslaught and outrage:

Vegan protein icons

Whaaat?

You’re kidding.

You’re not serious.

Whaaat?

A reflexive response to homo sapiens’ rejection of all things never questionable.

You dare countenance baser instincts, to sin against the natural law? Beasts naturally sacrifice their corpus by dint of birth. It’s frail folly to eat the fruit from the tree of knowledge.

animal-rights-ego-vs-eco-hoodies-men-s-hoodie

I also imagine that back then veganism was much harder and much less accepted than it is today.

Graduating from university in the year of Woodstock 1969 and Earth Day occurred the following year. Insanity by political edict in Vietnam would never occur again. Nixon flew away in a disgrace that many of my peers vowed to avenge. Whiplash by pendulum swing was inconceivable — but it was only five years away.

A certain nihilism set in with what I call “Mourning in America” 1980.

Whiplash happens.

Did you join an animals rights group?

Peter Singer (Animal Liberation) rocked the planet with his unspeakable recommendations in 1975. E.F. Schumacher suggested that small was beautiful.  It seemed the conventional wisdom would follow in steady due course — but not politically and not personally. My wife died in 1983. I became a single parent until Lisa showed up to rescue us. She got the chance to shop for groceries with a vegan in 1993. TVP and canned vegan fare were tucked away in an a nondescript top shelf. Those cans got lonely up there.

And about the detoxifying, I agree. When I first went vegan, I had detox symptoms too, but then I also gave up coffee, sugar and alcohol completely.

I successfully detoxed from alcohol after a single rehab week in Falmouth, KY. Heroin peers began to outnumber the alcohol-devotees. Break time at the picnic tables there led me back to cigarettes for some months. I was the only person to show up at a smoking-cessation series — my last puff was taken in the parking lot of the hospital sponsoring the series. I’ve saved the certificate of completion.

ToxicSpiceLatte-e1414120720331
I have mine without the above. What’s it called?

Let’s say that coffee ‘never hurt me none’, so I’m still with that Kodachrome. Sugar that doesn’t come with real and true fruit, sugar in empty-calorie form remains a crutch that I haven’t discarded. It’s bad news without a single redeeming social value, but I stock up on figs, dates and the such to counter the sugar molecules.

Thanks again for this post!

Thanks so much for the prodding. It’s been enormously helpful to answer your thoroughly wonderful questions.

Thanks for reading.

From Vegan to Veganist and Beyond

A fellow blogger recently submitted a question to this desk, actually it’s not a desk but a dining room table without dead animals on it.

el.dolor.es.igual
Animal liberation. human liberation

How long have you been vegan?

So I decided to ramble on about it right here…

…in a bid for garish aggrandizement, Bill?

No, in consideration of all the fellow sentient-beings that I have not killed by proxy several times today and several times tomorrow. Enlightenment brings more than inspiration and a healthier lifestyle — it entails (not entrails) a responsibility for passing the word forward for a better world.

It started with a flyer on a nondescript table in a university hallway 30 years ago (now three-sevenths of my life) — reasons for adopting a vegan diet. It was as dramatic as it was nonchalant.

During the first ten years I discovered that vegetarianism (keeping eggs, dairy and cheese in your diet) kept my body supplied with animal-derived molecules that fueled a craving for animal byproducts — the organs that excrete toxins, including your skin, were self-sabotaged. Detox is not pleasant, but there is no alternative. Not tossing meatables into a shopping cart results in fewer factory-farm orders for meatables.

I also discovered that fermented liquids might be a perfectly vegan alternative lifestyle choice, not all poisons come in animal-laden packages. That detox was also not very pleasant — just speaking from experience.

This great little saying is still my favorite for its truth and pithhood:

Every time you eat or drink

 

lunchables.uploaded.taco
W.T.F.!

Search the internet for ‘vegan’ and ‘health’ to find statements from people who tried to become vegan but suffered from fatigue until they went back to meat. It takes as long as a year for toxins and craves to leave the body. “Out damned toxin!” But it literally liberates your mind and your brain.

In your opinion, Billy. Spam brought the Philippines into this modern world. Capiche? 

I have discovered personally that your brain seeks alternate paths when not blogged down by crap. Check out the ingredients on fast-crap that people chew and chug all day. Dozens of long-named laboratory labels are strange, but not as loathsome as their crave-inducing effects. But who am I to question trillion-dollar industries?

 

meatables
Veganism is brain friendly

How can 97% of the consuming public be wrong, Bill? Think about it and shut up.

I’m just paranoid I guess. Sorry ’bout that.

Thanks for reading.

 

 

 

 

 

Sneaky Vegan Advertising

This is the story of a hypothetical broadcaster working an apocryphal news desk at an imaginary sports channel. Here’s the proverbial rub — he is a complete fraud, he has no sports credentials and he hasn’t followed team sports at any level since 1965. By sheer coincidence,  this fictional broadcaster goes by the name Bill Ziegler (no relation, or something).

Welcome to a narrow world of sports broadcast. All characters, statistics and coupon offers are spurious.

No sentient beings were consumed during the production of this broadcast. Go Vegan! Yay Veganism!

veganism.history

Transcript of today’s broadcast:

“Good evening sport, and welcome to our first post-Earth-Day program. We have four sports stories to cover today, so let’s get right to the latest news.

  1. Steve Dreadnought graduated from the NCAA (National Cademy of Academic Academies) in 2011, but it was all for naught until Nought got caught by the Astros on Shale Tuesday to become a doglegged free agent. Steve is a tight-end shaver with a bevy of linesman singing for the county of Paris in New Orleans. Nought controls the inside inch of the rail much better than Ben Bright’s Tights® Dawn’s Men and Seeping Cobwebs® is just about the only team remotely comparable to Ben Bright’s Tights. The team factors in with a ratio of twenty plays deep on the curve and thirty angstroms on the narrow —  each tight has the coarse battle scars earned on the course court to prove it.  Course they do. Write me for details.
  2. The Wave Continentals®are back in the wardrobe factory this season, filling in the gaps left by the Easter-Fry Warriors of Bangor®; as I recall, not a single Swigger Sweet could ravel the ball through the parallels as smoothly as Manfred Fried-Fries of Kenosha® — it’s the only place you can expect spectacular scurries thrown through the fourth wall. Seriously. My words say that they are second only to the Lads of Lancaster® I’ve been there — it ain’t never meant grease to donuts to me, but I’ve shelved Bangor Walnuts® for a living. A hard living, yet may the welts of dignity shine through, and with some decent resilience. I’m stowing my pine on the kitchen counter as my ante — they will make it to central division or drop into the Ides before April. Mark my broadcloth and send it to grandma if you don’t thank me later.
who-likes-vegans
Veganism is not just a trend

3. Moving on to the Autumn training hopes of the Gardenia Wafers® now. You just can’t find daylight between the Solid-Pack Drivers of Scant Regard® and the man who drove the wedgies home before breakfast. Sugar-toasted wedge bars are a new sponsor at ESPN-42®, they’re linked and liked everywhere, manufactured by Pistachio Penached Planchette, Inc.® Remember the name, it’s a double-dork franchise opportunity that you’ll only find on ESPN-42. We remain the only media outlet still located at Bent Beach, future home of the Pretense Machines of Machismo® and the Celery Bakers of West-North Eureka®. Try them soon or shoot the balloon.

a.truth.whose.time

Now, back to your program.

4. We’re introducing a new segment on the Big-Arse 42®— the outside line on the Neon Street Outlaws® those up-and-coming loot traders of the salvage yards begin a new season Thursday evening. Beaster the Baker and I are tracking them assiduously, with scented frame you play a wary game, it’s a tooth-swarm with a schoolmarm’s charm  — that’s what we claim and that’s what we tame. The guys and gals in the wardrobe garner their toes when they tracking a branded. Count down from 7 to 3 and you’ll know what I mean. We broadcast solid encounters with genuine street-incredulity — bouncing leatherettes sparring their claim to fame, as fisted and fancy as October’s Clancy®. Yes, it’s a retro-shot for the Donuts of Shame® a gifted pair of bozo twins who can wave a century-old limey bar faster than you can spin the coffee table to a screen-beveled level. Hey, we’ve all been there and this season promises more than pumpkin-scented jet-streams. You haven’t witnessed a charge more challenging than watching a brand expand into your dug-out chug-out — click SportWafers dot com for 50% off the second season-ticket. Take it to the general and sneer at the devil — it’s that kind of mango.”

northern-parula

Thanks for watching. Tune in tomorrow at 8 for more words from our sponsor 🙂

Disclaimer:

  • The information in this book is meant to supplement, not replace, proper (name your sport) training. Like any sport involving speed, equipment, balance and environmental factors, (this sport) poses some inherent risk. The authors and publisher advise readers to take full responsibility for their safety and know their limits. Before practicing the skills described in this book, be sure that your equipment is well maintained, and do not take risks beyond your level of experience, aptitude, training, and comfort level.

Thanks for reading.

Sid Caesar — A Language for all Seasons

Sid Caesar died in 2014 at age 91. A pioneer in the gentler arts of subtle humor, Caesar approached his craft with an inquisitive spirit and intellectual curiosity — you can’t do that without patience and discipline. He listened to rhythms and song, he could mime anything animate or inanimate. Though able to transmit the theater of language, his only two tongues were English and Yiddish.

sid-caesar

All languages are indeed songs. Iambic pentameter is, quite simply, the cadence of spoken English. In my opinion a haiku never sounds right in English because the Japanese haiku does not transplant well in foreign soil.

From the Caesar, not the one known for “Gallia est omnis divisa in partes tres”:

“I didn’t allow cue cards because, to my mind, when you’re acting with someone you listen when they speak, … Because then you can push off not just what they say but how they say it. You don’t just hang around waiting for your cue.”

Translation is a gentle art,  all translations are rough estimations. Something is always lost in the translation. In the hands of the demagogue language is a weapon to leverage propaganda. Agendas render translations that wish to mislead — always, or at least often enough.

Poetry resists translation intensely. But that is as it should be — poems are distilled language, translation muddies and soils.

quote-raffiniert-ist-der-herr-gott-aber-boshaft-ist-er-nicht-god-is-subtle-but-he-is-not-malicious-albert-einstein-90-85-72

By my own estimation an oft repeated remark by Albert Einstein is not a good enough translation of the German. A wise man once hadn’t said…

The German:  Raffiniert ist der Herrgott aber boshaft ist er nicht

The most common render: Subtle is the Lord, but malicious he is not.

A single word change: Mischievous is the Lord, but malicious he is not.

I think it’s good alliteration. Well, I may be outnumbered, but isn’t it an improvement on the more clumsy subtle/malicious. Perhaps I’m guilty of some degree of bias when taking sides with my own blog. With a nod to a rare public voice (hint: Habemus papam — “who am I to judge.”)
2-saints-from-palestine
Movements to excommunicate — or at least exile — Pope Francis are loud, vociferous and growing with brute fervor.
Listening patiently is among the lost arts. The sentient fellow-being in your presence deserves your attention — it’s that breathtakingly short moment when they may reach and teach you. Carpe diem!
Okie dokie, let’s consider another quote from Mr. Caesar:
The remote control changed our lives, … The remote control took over the timing of the world. That’s why you have road rage. You have people who have no patience, because you got immediate gratification. You got click, click, click, click. If it doesn’t explode within three seconds, click click, click.
~ Sid Caesar (from Successories)
When it comes time for you to speak, do not use your words as weapons but as tools for removing barriers, widening perspectives and sharing a planet where homo sapiens is the sole responsible specie threatening to drop another extinction event on all and each.
 Be also wary of weaponized symbols and icons, my impertinent opinion of course.
Thanks for reading.

A Möbius Twist Please

 

Hariod Brawn, a fellow I follow regularly on WordPress, recently posted “What is it like for nothing to happen.” Many, including myself, have found great mill for grist there. Please consider spending a moment or five there.

gahan-wilson-nothing-happens-next-this-is-it-new-yorker-cartoon_a-g-9172121-8419447

Such thoughts as these intrigue me.

What is the science behind the abrupt discontinuity and surprising continuity of a Möbius strip? You are on one side and simultaneously on the other, or is it the other way around. Or is there just one side? A simple twist of the two-dimensional surface is radical and beautiful to ilk like me.

moebius-strip

 

Calculus allows us to keep begging the questions on a seeming, and actual, infinity:

“Are we there yet? When are we going to be there?”

Meanwhile we march on asymptotically toward an axis or several axes, or three-dimensional, four-dimensional axes.

asymptote

I say “dare to divide by zero.” But thank me not —thank the unknown scholars who introduced the zero. Roman numerals are hard-headed and in-your-face hard-nosed to math fans.

But back to nothing (or zero or zed). Consider the weight of the universe. Then consider its opposite: absolutely absolutely nothing.

“But, but the big-ass weight of the universe is a whole lot of something. Or something.”

Some time ago a science fiction author (name unknown to me) imagined a planet with never dissipating cloud cover. At no time of the day or night could an inhabitant see anything but the underside of endlessly butting together clouds. The sun was a hazy bright spot visible during the day. At night, of course, no stars. What could the inhabitants know of the universe?

Thanks for reading.