How many blogs? How many Facebook accounts?

How many social media entities does it take to spread one out over our species?

I am limited, having just five main email addresses I use actively, and maybe half a dozen blogs I maintain, only three Facebook profiles I update, not to forget the Pinterest and other social media sites that are updated automagically.

In the midst of that, I live and breathe.

What makes a greenhouse a living space or vice versa?

Can the word “punk” and the phrase “Waffle House” exist together? Yes, at Aretha Frankenstein’s in Chattanooga.

I say I want to be a hermit but I easily let a friend (well, not just any friend (the friend (she knows who she is))) get me back on social media with the only hesitation a five-hour daytime sleeping period to keep me on schedule with my night shift job, even on summer holiday.

I look down at my hands, observing the thinning skin, the early knotted knuckle signs of arthritis, the freckles and sunspots, wondering: will I live to 6th May 2050?

My thought structure passes through many phase shifts and subsets, pausing in Venn diagrams of interconnectedness, looking in all directions, asking myself: why am I asking myself questions, as if I’m not here with myself seeing me ask questions for which I already know the answers or already know I don’t know the answers?

Why do I pretend there is an Other/Not-Me which needs to see I already know the answers or already know I don’t know the answers?

Who am I? Who are we?

No, really.

When we know everything is grounded in reality but believe in magic/miracles/the unexplainable anyway…

Why?

We carry forward the successful thought patterns of our ancestors, regardless of its practical application today.

Sometimes as history (lest we forget the lessons our ancestors learned), sometimes as fairy tales/fantasy (as entertainment), sometimes as integral parts of our thought sets (because what worked in the past still works in the present/near future).

And if we could prove that thoughts do not exist in a vacuum, then what?

How do we extinguish the illusion of an independent person having independent thoughts?

How do we show that every one of us is just/miraculously a localised spinoff of stardust in motion?

How often should we tell, rather than show?

How long will it take for everyone to see the obvious?

And for/to what purpose?

Saving the species from/for itself, even if species is a concept that should lose it illusion powers?

What does a benign universe provide itself in the localised forms taken in our shapes?

Other than randomness?

We are random, no worries, there, because we also do not exist, despite ancestral teaching to the contrary.

It is here that a good joke is inserted to take our thought trails in a lighthearted direction:

Charles Schulz — “My life has no purpose, no direction, no aim, no meaning, and yet I’m happy. I can’t figure it out. What am I doing right?”

Have you overcome the concepts of conscious and subconcious conscientiously?

A wren calls out in the backyard at 0630 this morning, making danger calls likes the ones it calls out when I open the garage door and walk out on the driveway.

Without my hearing aids, I would no longer hear the frequencies of its warbling.

I have learned from today’s experience of bird voices but I want to learn more.

And after learning, then what?

PLAN/DO/CHECK/ACT?

Do-be, do-be, do?

Those who can’t teach, act?

To know is to do/act?

To be is to do?

As a child, I learned to stop asking my parents “why?” all the time, because why I can’t remember.  I knew not to ask other adults because I often knew the answer before I asked and discovered that many adults feigned knowledge but basically lied or diverted attention from the facts to hide their ignorance rather than say “I don’t know” or “Good question!  Why don’t you look it up in a dictionary/encyclopedia and find out for yourself?”, although some adults, including my parents, pointed me to reference material, including nature itself, for answers.

A number/percentage of children don’t/didn’t have the luxury of helpful parents/adults or reference material and I will point them in the direction of my sister and her friends more suited to parenting/nurturing roles than I who provide such things as backpacks filled with food and other useful means to guide children without a [locally] socially-defined safety net for nurturing future adults/leaders/followers.

Today, my thoughts wander as I wake up in preparation for a workday of helping save lives.

I have on the periphery of my cloudy neurochemical neuronic firings the hint I will learn some thing/idea of relative importance, to/for whom/what, I cannot say.

I ask myself why and do not yet receive a reply.

I try to avoid platitudes and concepts upon which I could rely for quick answers to general questions at this time.

I could, for instance, turn to the comforting plateau of nothingness, a blank plain, devoid of sun, wind, and/or objects of any kind, neither dark nor light, in which I erase the advert-like memes that pop up from daily exposure to members of my set of states of energy (i.e., species) and relax uninterrupted for immeasurable units of time.

But that, too, is an artificial construct which does not exist.

Instead, I am surrounded by trees, bacteria, insects, fungus, algae, plastic, paper, cloth, furniture, electrical wiring and words printed on material that identify objects, advertising their purchasable purposes.

It is in reality that I live.  I desire to live in this moment, not ignore it as I ponder other moments that we identify as past and future for placement of the set of states of energy I hesitantly but happily will identify as my older self in another setting with other objects, perhaps on another planet.

From that last statement, I mentally prepare to save/post this blog entry, close down the laptop computer and finish getting ready to drive to my new workplace, interact with fellow employees and help to save lives.

Happiness is your favorite shade of colour

When getting a hotel reservation on the phone, I spoke to a happy person whose name is Marvelous. That’s setting a standard from birth, isn’t it? But she was, indeed, mahvuhlus!

Right now, I’m listening to some possible tunes for a Lindy Hop dance with Jenn. One possibility, “Evenin'”:

Evenin’,
Every night you come and you find me,
Must you always come and remind me,
That my gal is gone.

Hurry, evenin’,
Don’t you see I’m deep in your power,
Every minute seems like an hour,
Since my gal is gone.

Shadows fall
On the wall,
That’s the time I miss her kiss most of all,
Even though I try
How can I go on?

Take me, evenin’,
Let me sleep ’til gray dawn is breaking,
I don’t care if I don’t awaken,
For my gal is gone.

Shadows fall
On the wall,
That’s the time I miss her kiss most of all,
Even though I try
How can I go on?

Take me, evenin’,
Let me sleep ’til gray dawn is breaking,
I don’t care if I don’t awaken,
For my gal is gone.

(Songwriters
Parish, Mitchell / White, Harry A.)

It fits in with what I imagined for a good dance, just slow enough to throw in some fun moves but fast enough to make the quick moves look quicker. And it stays away from the old swing standards.

Anyway, I’m as happy as a clam at a clam bake. What am I saying? I mean I’m as happy as a man with a stack of clams at a clam bake.

Why? Well, I received my collector’s edition of the New Statesman in the mail today, which means some good philosophical political reading to put me to sleep over the next few weeks. Bet my dreams will be dreamy, not dreary.

While we’re on the subject of newsworthy items, it seems that more and more celebrities are announcing they’re either gay/lesbian or they were born the wrong gender.

Well, I don’t want to miss the party so I’ll let you in on a secret I’ve known since 8th grade. I am not a binomial nor do I bisect anything. I simply dance tangentially to my partner and might, just might, play with polynomial shapes on the dance floor.

More as it develops…

Back in the leather saddle of a desk chair

Two things I’ve learned over the weekend:

  1. Never buy a Frenchman a bottle of wine, and
  2. Never buy a Sicilian a copy of the film, “The Princess Bride.”

More importantly, I’m beginning to wonder if the recent short episodes of fever/headache/sinus infection are related to the weeks…nay, months-old tick bite places on my legs that haven’t completely healed.

Most importantly, I’m glad I have my wife.  Despite our differences (she thinks of Gene Kelly when she hears “Singing In The Rain” and I think of Malcolm McDowell, which leads to the Malcolm Baldrige award and then to Malcolm Gladwell’s pop novels), she has my best health in her thoughts, or so her actions lead me to believe without question.

If only I could blame the tinnitus on tick bites.

Most Monday mornings, I’m rather depressed because the weekend had filled me with new personalities and their busy lives to ponder and compare my quiet Monday mornings to.

But then, in the middle of a dream last night, I was at some gathering and up walked my best friend in high school, Monica, her face covered in reddish-purple makeup that I just now realise was in the style of a character named Mystique in the film, “X-Men,” who reached up, rubbed my chin and shivered, rubbing her own smooth chin, saying, “You know I don’t like beard stubble,” and me apologising, saying, “I know, I meant to shave before I got here but didn’t.”

I suddenly remembered my moonlighting job as a stringer for the Huntsville Times covering high school sports in the mid-1990s and woke up.

I cannot be what I am not.  Or I can be what I was not but then I’m not what I was.

Then I remembered where I live, a great place for technology-centred people like me who can help people of all shapes and sizes, such as Zero Point Frontiers Corp.

And I opened my iPad to a lecture by the self-promoter, Noam Chomsky, on the obvious fact that democracy is merely a word to the U.S. socioeconomic condition.

Finally, for the first time in years, I sat down in the leather office chair to start writing this blog entry and was able to push myself back against the upright portion of the chair, thanks to the months and years of dance training by Joe, with more recent massage work by Abi, with dance instruction by her and by Jenn.

I don’t know how lucky I am.  I really don’t.

I wish I knew that people are as delicate and needful as I am for social interaction, rather than assuming I am the only one who’s afraid to speak my thoughts because I might sound weird and uninteresting to the uninitiated.

How, then, do I reconcile the difference between my wanting to say out loud that a particular piece of art or the artist’s work in general is not interesting to me because I have no connection to the style or message, and my fear that everyone will say the same thing to me at once and I will feel more alone, completely lonely, than ever?

Thoughts to ponder on a Monday morning!

 

Your video comparison of the day

During my morning rituals — wake up in wee hours, see stars, dream — I had a vision of two songs that merged — amazing similarity:

But comparing these two is more fun:

 

Thanks to the group in Birmingham for the announced move to Ricket City so they can prove that the moniker “Fools, Buffoons and Idiots” is not earned.

Redacted, retracted, redux

I don’t know what it is that puts me in a mood like this, this feeling of smugness, this desire not to believe in myself, to always be wrong, always chasing the perfect 100 on a test score as if I’ll never get it, running from my mistakes, fleeing into the cosmos.

Why?

Because of both my faith in AND my fear of our species’ imperfections.

I do not want to be successful.

Instead, always vigilant, looking for the crack in the veneer, analysing the pinhole leak in the dam, contemplating the lack of understanding everything going on in a cubic centimeter of dirt.

Why?

Because we can make films about our mistakes, films which contain their own mistakes, and we learn from neither, or the lessons we learn and the solutions we apply solve a different set of problems because time is irrelevant, only relative.

That is why we seek perfection in our theosophical beliefs.

Otherwise, tarnish, rust and decay should be taken as normal aspects of our impermanence.

I am chasing my tail in an M.C. Escher print.

Take it from a former slave…

Anyone remember Epictetus, the Greek philosopher who was born a slave?

Well, his insights were ageless then and just as poignant now.

However, let’s all pretend that modern psychologists can justify their lofty professional salaries by polling the people and rewording the writing of ancient Greeks, as if there’s something new to be said:

“There is only one way to happiness and that is to cease worrying about things which are beyond the power or our will. ”
Epictetus

“Wealth consists not in having great possessions, but in having few wants.”
Epictetus

“First say to yourself what you would be;
and then do what you have to do.”
Epictetus

“Man is not worried by real problems so much as by his imagined anxieties about real problems”
Epictetus

F3LKJ

F3LKJ reminded me in this morning’s status meeting that her team had already invented a an audiovisual sensor array that resembles rosacea and is easily installed on faces with no adverse effects.

Using skin pores as multipixel sites, capturing high-resolution images, combined with stereo sound and an experimental smell sensor, F3LKJ’s team invention can turn one of our field agents into a complete cybernetic wunderkind.

After our meeting, I met F3LKJ at our meditation centre.

Here is audio portion of our conversation.

[sound of lighting candle]

“Ummmm…”

“Excuse me.”

“Yes, F3LKJ?”

“Are you meditating?”

“No.  Why?”

“You were saying, ‘Ommmm…'”

“No, I was talking out loud to myself and was temporarily at a loss for words.”

“I see.  Well…”

“Ummmm…”

“If you need to finish the conversation with yourself, I can leave.”

“No, I was just clearing my throat.”

“Okay.  Anyway…”

“Ummmm…”

“Look.  I’ll be glad to come back!”

“No.  Stay.  I can talk to myself and listen to you at the same time.”

“Very well.  See, there’s a problem with the sensor array.  It’s…well…”

“Ummmm….”

“Would you stop that?!”

“Umm…what did you say?”

“That sound you make is annoying.”

“Sound?  Sorry, I was deep in meditation for a moment there.  I hear a whisper of sounds of your voice in my thoughts.  A sensor array problem, you said?”

“Yes.  And please stop meditating right now.  Look, I’ll make it quick.  The sensor array has, for lack of a better word, developed a synergy all its own, forming a symbiotic relationship with our test subjects, widening their consciousness, so to speak…”

“…As if they’re in a permanent meditative trance?”

“Precisely!”

“Good.  It’s just as I thought.  I had one of your techs embed one of the sensor arrays in me last night after you’d left the lab.  I feel like I’m at one with the universe all the time now.”

[sound of dancing feet]

“But, sir, what if there are any negative side effects?”

“A leader must take calculated risks and, because your team performs flawlessly all the time, I felt it was a risk worth taking.”

[more dancing feet sounds]

“Sir, your dancing is distracting.”

“Dancing?”

“Yes.  Or at least I assume your flailing around is what you’d call dancing.  Why didn’t you inform me of your plans?”

“I didn’t want to bias the results with you spending extra care on my installation.  By the way, did you know there’s an undercurrent of electricity that pulses through you when you’re trying to control your behaviour.  Quite subtle!”

“Sir!  You make me feel exposed!”

“F3LKJ, you are the first female on our team who I feel the least attracted to, despite your perfectly acceptable, socially well-defined, physical features.”

“Thank you, sir.  My parents were sticklers for details and managed every step of my DNA sequencing, from gestation through my formative years, up until the moment I was handed over to the State for public indoctrination training.”

“A shame about that last part, isn’t it?  What if you had been freed to develop away from conforming to the least common denominator amongst your peers?”

“No, sir.  It was a freeing experience, letting me know that my specialness was highly unique.  I rarely conformed to any normative baselines.”

“Very well.  Any other concerns?”

“Yes, sir.  I am worried about the Committee’s proclamation that one a day will be killed until this current crisis is solved.  Aren’t we advancing away from death threats as a means of self-actualising the whole population?”

“Ummm…I feel myself a part of the universe, where words like violence are without meaning…we are just the intersection of sets of states of energy in motion…death is reformation…life is…ummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm…”

“Sir?  Sir?”

[Sounds of dancing.  Sounds of candles kicked over.  Sounds of fabric catching on fire.  Sounds of running.]

= = = = =

NOTE: The new firesafe Meditation Centre is under construction.  Please use the library annex for meditation purposes until further notice.  Also, wax candles have been banned from the library but you may bring an electronic LED flicker candle to simulate meditation focus points, if you like.

Does this comic piece from the New Yorker really exist? Does it matter?

Le Blog de Jean-Paul Sartre

Posted by
Jean-Paul_Sartre_323.jpg

 

Saturday, 11 July, 1959: 2:07 A.M.

I am awake and alone at 2 A.M.

There must be a God. There cannot be a God.

I will start a blog.

Sunday, 12 July, 1959: 9:55 A.M.

An angry crow mocked me this morning. I couldn’t finish my croissant, and fled the café in despair.

The crow descended on the croissant, squawking fiercely. Perhaps this was its plan.

Perhaps there is no plan.

Thursday, 16 July, 1959: 7:45 P.M.

When S. returned this afternoon I asked her where she had been, and she said she had been in the street.

“Perhaps,” I said, “that explains why you look ‘rue’-ful.”

Her blank stare only reinforced for me the futility of existence.

Friday, 17 July, 1959: 12:20 P.M.

When S. came through my study just now I asked her to wait a moment.

Rueful,” I told her. “Because ‘rue’ is the French word for street.”

“What?” she said.

“From yesterday,” I said.

“Oh,” she said. “Yeah. Right.”

“And you said you had been in the street.”

“I got it,” she said.

“It was a pun,” I said.

“Got it,” she said. “Puns aren’t your thing, are they?”

“They fill me with dread,” I admitted, for it is true.

“I gotta go,” S. said. “Hey, from now on? Maybe not so much for you with the jokes. It’ll be like an hour for lunch, I gotta thaw the poulet.”

Existence is a vessel that can never be filled.

Sunday, 19 July, 1959: 8:15 A.M.

Let others have their so-called “day of rest”! I shall continue to strive, to think, for in work alone is Man’s purpose. This is what the bourgeoisie seem never to grasp. Especially that lout M. Picard from No. 11. Every day is a “day of rest” for that tête de mouton. How I wish he did not have his Citroën up on blocks in the front yard! Appearances are without meaning, but still, it does not look nice.

Wednesday, 22 July, 1959: 10:50 A.M.

This morning over breakfast S. asked me why I looked so glum.

“Because,” I said, “everything that exists is born for no reason, carries on living through weakness, and dies by accident.”

“Jesus,” S. said. “Aren’t you ever off the clock?”

Monday, 27 July, 1959: 4:10 A.M.

Lunch with Merleau-Ponty this afternoon in Saint-Germain-des-Prés. I was disturbed to hear that he has started a photoblog, and skeptical when he told me that although all its images are identical—a lonely kitten staring bleakly into space as rain falls pitilessly from an empty sky—he averages sixteen thousand page views per day. When I asked to see his referrer logs, he muttered evasively about having an appointment with an S.E.O. specialist and scurried away.

So this is hell.

Monday, 3 August, 1959: 11:10 A.M.

I was awakened this morning by the sound of an insistent knocking at my door. It was a man in a brown suit. He seemed to be in a hurry, as if Death itself were pursuing him.

“One always dies too soon—or too late,” I told him. “And yet one’s whole life is complete at that moment, with a line drawn neatly under it, ready for the summing up. You are—your life, and nothing else.”

“Okay,” he said. “But I’m just the UPS guy.”

“Oh,” I said. “I— Oh.”

“Sign here,” he said.

“I thought you were a harbinger of Death,” I told him.

“I get that a lot,” he said, peering down at the place on the clipboard where I had signed. “Spell your last name?”

“S-A-R-T-R-E,” I said.

“Have a nice day,” he said.

A nice day. How utterly banal.

Tuesday, 4 August, 1959: 3: 30 P.M.

A year ago, in a moment of weakness, I allowed my American literary representative to sell one of my books to a cinema producer for what was described as “a bold exploration of contemporary issues.” Yesterday I received a packet of publicity materials for a film titled “Johnny Sart: PD Squad.” The subtitle, or “tag line,” was “No badge. No gun. No exit.” A series of transatlantic telephone calls followed. Apparently I am unable to have my name removed from this abomination, but I will receive what is called a “co-producer” credit.

Existence is an imperfection.

Thursday, 20 August, 1959: 2:10 P.M.

If Man exists, God cannot exist, because God’s omniscience would reduce Man to an object. And if Man is merely an object, why then must I pay the onerous fees levied on overdue balances by M. Pelletier at the patisserie? At least this was the argument I raised this morning with M. Pelletier. He seemed unconvinced and produced his huge loutish son Gilles from the back, ominously brandishing a large pastry roller. The pastry roller existed, I can tell you that.

Friday, 2 October, 1959: 5:55 A.M.

My sleep continues to be troubled by odd dreams. Last night I dreamt that I was a beetle, clinging to the slick surface of a water-soaked log as it careened down a rain-swollen stream toward a waterfall. A figure appeared on the horizon, and as the log drew closer I could see that it was Camus. He held out a hand and I desperately reached for it with my tiny feeler. Just as the log drew abreast of Camus he suddenly withdrew his hand, swooped it through his hair, and sneered “Too slow,” adding superfluously, “Psych.”

It is my belief that the log symbolizes the precariousness of Existence, while the tiny feeler represents Man’s essential powerlessness. And Camus represents Camus, that fatuous ninny.

Tuesday, 10 November, 1959: 12:05 A.M.

It has been over a month since I have updated my blog. I am seized with an urge to apologize. But to whom, and to what end? If one truly creates for one’s self, why then am I so disturbed to find that my unique visitors have dwindled away practically to nothing, with a bounce rate approaching ninety-five per cent? These twin impulses—toward reckless self-regard and the approbation of others—neatly negate one another. This is the essential paradox of our time.

I will start a podcast.

Read more http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/shouts/2012/10/le-blog-de-jean-paul-sartre.html#ixzz2AuHZHRIw