Monday, July 17, 2017

I Finally Distilled the Privilege Movement

You are reinforcing tribalism, insisting upon it, under the banner of vanquishing tribalism.   Privilege stems from that.  What you are calling privilege is always what the majority and/or powerful in all societies take for themselves.  As soon as any group gains the numbers they grant their own special privilege.

Some individuals have evolved past that, but most people have not.  I am talking all ethnicities.  Back in the day your white privilege did squat for you in Harlem.  And to this day, just go to the non-white areas of the city, or anywhere in Memphis, and tell me how that white privilege is working.

Mostly, it doesn't work outside your own territory.  But if you claim your territory is so vast that the sun doesn't set on it, chances are you are wielding your privilege thanks to your superior weapons and understanding of how they work.   When you privilege at gunpoint, it ruffles the feathers of the highly populous under class.  Bad thing to do and they end up with trouble for all.

Now they are creating fantasies about privilege.  Guilt, I think, for many, greed for others.   Pretty much trying to unprivilege at gunpoint and reason it from a hyper-tribal perspective.  And that's the problem; necessity to punish under assumption that this is a uniquely whit phenomenon and sickness.

Every dominate group has done that obnoxious form of discrimination in one form or another forever.  Sometimes it is a leave or die kind of deal.

If you want to blame everyone for their ancestors, no one is left innocent.  Maybe that rainforest group that they ruined just by exposing them to modern humanity, and a machete.

Everyone else is not innocent of whatever it is that is used to lament and bemoan and fabricate privilege.  A little current reality, a lot current fantasy.

The far left tell us that a society in which race and ethnicity are neither considered character virtues, nor sins, somehow doesn't work out.  And how dare you cook Mexican food if you aren't Mexican.  Or sell a Ferrari if you aren't Italian.  Something about hijacking cultures?  It is a different word buZzing about.  The privilege police would know.  

The entire Aztec nation was built on commandeering other tribes and their cultures.  It is where they got most of the cool engineering, and scientifically advanced aspects of their culture.  They were just thugs at the outset, like most.   If culture did not incorporate advances and practices developed by others, we would be more backward than we are.

The problem is that discrimination based on color and such had become very much the exception rather than the norm, and was trending toward even more nondiscriminatory.   People who profit from the abuse (Jesse, Al, et al) felt threatened.  The demagogues who keep in office by scaring groups, keeping them ignorant and in poverty, could not have been pleased.

So now they push segregation claiming pulling people out of a murderous, ignorant, destitute way of life is robbing them of their identity.  So, they convince them that their culture is that of the pimps, drug dealers, and violent criminals.  So, they dress like, talk like, act like gangstas. And they even have their own spelling.  This has nothing to do with an actual culture and is an insult but greed blinds people from seeing it.  The greed to be a victim and free of all bounds.  To a victim, any violence or larceny is just, self defense, survival, war.

If you want a just society, so be it.  But punishing or rewarding based upon condition of birth is as elitist and creepy as monarchy.


Tuesday, July 11, 2017

The Not So Intelligentsia, but just enough

Before delving into the meat of the current matter, I will mention that I hid from view my post explaining that I am so lame that I let an absurdly critical, self-proclaimed friend, remove any joy or freedom I find in writing.  I used to enjoy it.

I am trying to once again.   Like I am buying that it is an act of friendship to offer such unsolicited views, and then rudely argue them.  All to help me reach my full potential.  No. That is purely insane and bizarre.

But the real deal is that there are so many charismatic people who possess the ability to speak fluently in a way that makes anything, even nonsense,  at least sound valid and profound.  But they are just short of how intelligent they seem to believe themselves to be.

No use arguing it though.  People are so in love with their conclusions that even smart people run a line of distorted facts in their greed to sell their point. Their greed for your acquiescence.

Most of the smartass political rhetoric out there is flawed, skewed and one sided.  People sucker for the either-or choices pushed on them.  Granted, there can be made the argument that these positions and parties snowballed from what people want and gravitated into two basic warring factions.

I believe that argument would be a case of a little truth being used to sell a lie.  People are wanters.  No argument there.

Civic action, mutual protection and common interests of communities are part of how humans survive.  Then it gets taken over by con men and apparent demons of some kind.  Perhaps mutants or a curse from extra terrestrials.

We do not even blink at friggin' family power dynasties in our government.  Does that set off no red flags?  Probably not.  That is because people can only think so many steps back in the cause-and-effect chain.  Often those things are mislabeled.  Try arguing that point with the belligerent.  No thanks.

People are becoming unreasonably unhinged but still following the track laid out by the meme and talking point factories of their choice.  A guy actually said you are more likely to get hit by a republican drunk driver than killed by gang members or terrorists.   Really?  That was in a back and forth about sanctuary cities and not liking party crashers does not mean you hate all Mexicans.  Stuff that only needs explaining because people are so greedy for power.

The next best thing if you can't have real power, is real anger.  Someone or thing to hate.   Because of that greed, people will ignore the ridiculous rhetoric and behavior as long as it supports the ultimate point.  The conclusion that feels good, that frees them to behave as violently as they want, because it is self defense.  They are fighting for their rights.

Just ask them.  Really, you don't need to because they are rather vocal and self serving.   For some reason, in order to refute a contrary point of view, they need to make up dire statistics and stories, circumventing plain logic and truth.   Sometimes the conclusion can be supported reasonably.   Sometimes not.

Smart enough to fight for a cause and enjoy the freedom of victimhood and anger, but not quite smart enough to actually dissect the issue they support/oppose to be sure it is right.  Plus if it is a bandwagon opportunity, most people jump on.  Makes them feel like they can pretend to think without going to any real effort.  They don't even realize it half the time, is what I think.

That is why it is useless, and even dangerous to push the argument with them.

Recently I skimmed an article bemoaning criticisms of higher education by "conservatives".  It went on to the extreme type of ignoramus who would claim, "If it good 'nuff fer ma daddy then it good nuff fer me".  They cut you off.  The article tries to make you think any criticism of their insane policies, all out propaganda assault on students and community, narrow mindedness, and heavy handedness toward the innocent, means you hate knowledge, are republican, and resist all manner of essential elements vital to the very survival of our species.

Sounds like the Dade County public schools of my youth.  The students that get crushed or fall through the cracks in this system.  It is kind of cruel.  And it isn't what you see promoted.  What is promoted is only vote pandering.  Much is nonsense.

The perpetual victim status of all these divisions which have nothing to do with whether you are worth a damn as a human or not, is now ensured to continue indefinitely as we immerse ourselves in the hatred and contemplation of "privilege".   You cannot have the privilege of which we speak without someone being victimized.  Almost everyone has the opportunity to be a victim.  No need to state the obvious, especially because you get labeled as something you are not if you do.  Got to be a universal oppressor somewhere...

And it is true in some ways.  What people refuse to do is to stick to the truth in their stories and examples, even when truth is there.  That extra bit of exaggeration, the little omission.        
See?  Smart enough to catch a understand a bit, but not stalwart enough to stick to truth and try to look back several steps to see what was going on up to now; to double check their story.

We don't have much info indicating humans were ever at peace.  But I hold that we really don't know.  They keep finding older evidence of the species.

But the ones who actually consider themselves "the masses" (ugly term) can actually be convinced that the African continent was in peaceful bliss, that the Aztecs were at one with nature and a big love  fest of a nation before europeans hit the shore.

I am not saying I am a fan of Inquisition period Spain or any of that.  But that does not justify lying about the rest of the world.   That is what made the philosophy espoused in the Declaration of Independence and embodied in our Constitution so important and cutting edge.   And yet people still look for kings and queens and lords and masters; "Camelot", my ass.



Sunday, July 2, 2017

Movie Review

I live miles from everywhere.  Up here they do not run cable.  You can get satellite.  So internet connection methods are limited.  Anyway, I am among the unwashed who still use Redbox and watch DVDs on my laptop.

Which is why I rented this incredibly odd movie, "Viking Legacy".  The stole Seinfeld's "show about nothing" idea.  Maybe they took it too far.

The movie is about some scrolls and world peace and sex in the woods, but not really.  Wow, I just realized they should quote me there.  It makes the movie sound far more coherent and interesting than it is.   So many things made no sense.  Like why didn't the bad guys just shoot them with arrows through the thin wall of fire?  No need to elaborate on that.'

The acting did improve as we went along.  People on screen appeared genuinely relieved when their characters got knifed in the heart and what-have-you, welcoming death with unnatural zeal, if you ask me.

There you have it.  So bad, and weirdly paced that  I am almost tempted to recommend it.  Like as a time filler if you're laid up and bored but too doped up to care about plot and such.  

Do you think they teach people how to act that badly?  I almost want to give kudos because the actors are so good at proving they can't act, but they're chic in a Tiny Tim sort of way.

These are Vikings in the old days.  Hanging out somewhere in the land of Christians.  Nuns killing people right and left.  Seriously, bad ass nun.

I realize a murderous nun is no shock to many of those who grew up Catholic and attended parochial school.   She's not a Viking, of course.  She's even meaner.  They baptized one Norseman, our low key hero.

He switched from his gods to hers (the heroine not nun) because he was in heat and on her turf.  That part was true to life.

Really, no offense, but isn't converting to a religion to please a spouse sort of nonsense?   You are doing it for one general reason,. And it has nothing to do with suddenly finding God, it's because that's the surest way to round the bases and come sliding in at home.  

I'm not saying I wouldn't convert under proper motivation.  Even though I really dislike a lot of religions; a bigot and a phobe.  I won't argue it one way or another beyond that, just saying yea I'm phobic.

I went off topic.  This movie is perfect if you need noise going on while you doze off.

They used the word Viking to attract viewers, I guess.  No boats, just some wandering around stabbing and uttering dialog written by someone not privy to the movie's plot.

All the good guys get killed anyway.  Conversion did not help that.  But the nun and the chick whose character may have been central to this riveting story (not sure) ride off on some mission to "the Council" shouting "girl power" or some equivalent, so it seems.  yay

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Now This is More Like It

Maybe video will appear, plenty of people were recording us with their phones at the American Legion event.  We were outdoors under a nice big oak on a plywood stage.  Perfect for my cowboy boot flamenco routine.

The whole thing was a pleasant surprise.  Chris has become better and better.  Emily, too.  And I was motivated to ignore my depressing inner dialog mantras for awhile and just see what I could do with the sounds I could add to the mix.

Those who knew me will think of me as a damned harmonica player when I kick.  I only do it because I would fall off the edge if I didn't.  I'd rather be a cutting edge engineer or physicist.  Or some such thing.  A little late.

I have no idea how this works;  Chris and Em are the least experienced of people that I have regularly backed, been part of the band.  Yet, they seem to be the best paying, and in many ways, the most beloved by audiences.   There is an automatic kind of kinship they seem to have with people.

This cool afternoon and evening with the enthusiastic crowd and just the freewheeling nature of this group, I felt like turning out something to help the event hold attention.

But they are heading out in a day.  I think their Texas day jobs are working out well.  They both work for a large contractor.  I think he is doing more hands on superintendent sort of stuff, but not a ton of hours, and she's full time in estimating.  They are still hounding me to move and still scheming feasible plans.

They needn't push.  I plan to visit before the first of the year.  Hopefully I will remain here Christmas.  If I travel I hope for October.  I'll see what's what.  I have some schemes worked out.

Lately I have had more work, mostly fixing the damage and chaos created and left at the place by our esteemed guests.  The resort home at, in, and around which I do various things, but to say I am a handiman or housekeeper or window washer would all be false, and true.   If things remain as is for awhile, I can save enough to replace this car with another Forester of more recent year, and fewer miles.  I narrowly missed one that was really nice and a price I could have paid, but felt it.  Still, way less than I paid the first time.  But that one was nearly new, like this one was.  Now, 272,000 + miles.

I'd probably keep this car as the work car, with tools and mess.  The other would be the road car.  Then one of those lightweight camper trailers which include some comfort but not some other things. I could actually probably hack it.  I am actually keeping an eye out for both the vehicle and the camper.    It fits in to one interesting possibility in Tx.

Then again, I just don't know.  I guess a good idea would be to visit, and see.   Maybe see if I can cope with the heat or not.  I was raised in heat.  Miami.  Geez, they even named the basketball team heat.  What's that tell you?  (that's rhetorical, you needn't respond)

So, I expected the drunk part to screw it all up.  Could have gone either way, but being outside, it worked out.  Also a large contingent of not drunk people were outside.  They liked the music, and they liked avoiding being confined in a building with the perpetually drunk.

The fact that I used to be a drunk person doesn't prevent me from acknowledging the totally obnoxious and annoying nature of most drunks.  There is the variety which is like insistent insanity.  No win.  Win meaning peace. Unmolested personal peace.

I recognized the majority of the non drunk people.  And some on the edge of alcohol doing a real number on them.

So, I have gone to nearly mixing it up with a worthless baby boomer, about my age, one night, to inspired playing with almost millennials and a crowd that could be rowdy without the sort of rude nonsense I witnessed at the Belly up.  Places that run the way that place does rake it in, but they really offer no real customer service, just alcohol and some token food. Maybe good burgers.  Who knows.  No way I wanted to navigate that zoo.

All those people packed standing in the open place in front of the stage.  It is a large area.  The majority of people were packed in that area. All standing.  And pushing against the sitdown people around the edge.  In some universes the fire code would not allow this sort of bulk people packing,    If there had been any sort of fire or panic causing event, requiring evacuation, some people would get hurt.  No doubt.  Creepy baby boomers, I hope.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Never Again

I like Los Lonely Boys, so I went to see them at a local venue that for some reason books a lot of great bands for a night as they travel wherever.  Belly Up Tavern.

Band yes.  That venue, no.  A big mix on age.  The most obnoxious contingent, of course, being drunk baby boomers.  The place is really an insult.

They pack people in, mostly standing and being obnoxious in what would be a dance floor area.  Tall people to the front.  Embarrassing.  

I used to drink, and I guess I forgot about places like that.  They bring in good bands, and have a drunk sort of crowd.  That is life to many.  I almost got in a fight with a guy.  And I was thinking psychotic.  If he had gone for the assault he promised, I had decided how to best disable him, maybe bust ear drums or put out eyes.  I settled for saying keep off of me and f*** off.  He said something else and I said F*** you f***ing moron.  He was a bully.  I know the kind, taller than most, and just big enough to intimidate the uninformed.  But they only push it where resistance is low.  Cowards and creeps.  Baby boomers.  The creepiest generation.  And I had to be born in it.

So the guy eventually disappeared, reappeared, then vanished.  The setup of the venue is one that you can only take advantage of if you know the score.  Wait in line for the doors to open, hoping to get a seat at one of the side semi bleacher sort of seats with bench table.  But chances are the people who bought separate tickets for the happy hour, hours earlier, also had show tickets and scooped up all the tables.  The rest are just serving as shills to bolster the pride in idiocy that characterizes a lot of pop culture, and maybe all culture.

Interestingly the people around us in line were really nice, entertaining people.  They knew more what they were in for and how they liked to approach it.   Really it was a series of unfortunate events that made the event disaster for me.  Not so much for my friend M, but to some extent, that may say it all.  That is good if she had a fine time.  It was mostly payback for helping me do some work at home.

I should be grateful, a year or two ago, I could not have risked being stuck somewhere where I might be triggered for one of the pruritus episodes.  So that part is better.  Been trying to get more exercise.  Work is good for that.   I need to take advantage of the sneaky slippers program offered in my insurance.  Go to the gym on the insurance company because you are a feisty senior.  

I have always hated the age terms.  Even in my 30's I wanted to barf listening to TV news blathering about, "Well, the rain didn't dampen the spirits of these feisty seniors, as they make their way to Montana's Beartooth Pass on skateboards!  Yaz, (name of co-anchor or weather person), it just goes to show age is but a number"

Then co-anchor responds, laughingly, " well, I hope I can just walk when I'm that age.  Already, I'm feeling the aches in my bones, trying to get out of bed in the morning.  My hat's off to these sexy seniors."  Hahaha.  Fun is had by all.  Seriously, I do not have the blueprint of the best alternative, but this cannot be the best way for civilization to evolve.  It just doesn't feel right.

But that is probably the definition of how a depressive or other mental case feels.   But is it a trick because we've evolved from co-anchor banter and good idiotic humor, to panels of self proclaimed experts, mostly spouting the same hysteria and drivel, while screaming over one another, especially the designated devil's advocate or caricature of the opposition.

It is strange how all of it so reminds me of the Dade County public schools, that I attended as a confused and dying youth.   It has not changed.  Schools are the biggest bullies since out of control police.  Maybe worse.  In the name of protecting and preventing bullying, they invariably throw the less malleable, yet not malicious, inmates into the collateral damage gutter and go on.   Not born with extra points for their condition of birth.  And not born with money.  But not destitute enough for the state to take over.  Which does have its advantages.

I have very little to say that would be favorable, even though the actual academics were mostly high quality.  The treatment and pretense was peculiar, and Miami kids had a very large percentage of thugs and jerks.  I wonder of many of the failed on purpose so they'd be bigger than their classmates, facilitating their desire to fight but not get hit.  They could extort lunch money, destroy property of others for no reason, force others to give test answers, etc.

I now go to another drunk venue, the American Legion in Alpine.  The plus side is that we will be outside, it is with Valor and Lace.  Chris and Emily.  Resonator/dobro man is in TX and could not make it back this weekend.  So Chris and Em and Richard all live close in TX now, them permanently, Richard temporarily for close to a year.   So it is outside, haven't seen them for while, and all that.  The sad side is the degree of alcoholism there and the sometimes obnoxious character that assumes.  After last night I guess I will be subdued.  Plus I am playing with a Marine scout sniper.  No one will step too far out of line.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Time Flies and Flutters

  IT  has been an interesting month or so.   Some of it highlights my good fortune, considering my compulsive negligence when it comes to nurturing and maintaining my own life and best interests.  This whole forced medical thing can sometimes be worked to some benefit.

Being old and poor but not destitute is a winner in the medical world, for the moment.  I made just enough that they allowed me to elect insurance which gives choice and I can refer myself to a cancer hack or orthopedic doctor.  Since rare diseases get misdiagnosed by the average nitwit, this setup allowed me to skip the fools and get to decent specialists.   I dodged a bullet there.

It was through my own research and long distance consultation with a friend's brother-in-law/hematologist that we got things narrowed down.  Hard to imagine now that showers had become a very painful ordeal, and high humidity could be torture.  I could not let water splash on me and leave it.   Those were rougher times in many ways.

But I got the stuff done.  Expensive stuff.  Mutation tests and other stuff which I will forego in future.  Colonoscopy and endoscopy can be over rated, and they can create problems which were not there.  I will avoid that in future.

Finally I even got a primary care babe.  I swear, in another life, I would have to be married to her.  In my eyes she is perfect.  If I knew her better, who knows.  Anyway, she's good news.

So, I even willingly accepted antibiotics.  They have it down to a five day thing.  I used to not handle them well at all.  Anyway, there may be a reason why they were invented.

I still wonder if I should just embrace the vagabond life, score one of those mini campers, like the egg shaped ones.  The very back is like an outdoor, covered kitchen, and the inside is mostly bed.  There are different shapes and kinds of lightweight campers out there.

It is a thought.  Sometimes you can get a gig doing part time work at a campground in exchange for free hook up and such.  There are entire websites devoted to the working camper community.  They migrate sometimes.  Sometimes stay for awhile at one spot.

My friend the ex math teacher, marine, resonator player, ex drummer, has a gig like that in Texas.  He has a fifth wheel set up, so his trailer has as much space as my cabin just about.  I have higher ceilings.  I must say, I have become hooked on high ceilings.  Had that in Memphis too.  The resonator is planning to stick with his gig for a year and cone back to SD because of family/grandkids.   Makes sense to me.

Finally broke down and got a 5 x 8 storage space in Alpine.  It is up some stairs but a good place.  Already, just from tools that need sorting, mostly, the floor space is mostly taken.  Some things get stacked.  I plan to organize it all in the next month, getting rid of what does not in any way bring joy.

I finally dumped the last souvenirs from New Zealand.  It is a great country and all that, but in the context of my personal visit and experiences related to the place, but not the fault of the place, there is nothing about it that gives me joy.  So, I donated jacket and other textiles geared toward jingoistic New Zealanders and tourists.   They only brought a dark wish for selective amnesia, and a sense of self loathing.  No joy.  No joy,  then it must go.

Got that from the cute Japanese girl's book about tidying up and her experiences with hopeless people, who must not be that hopeless, because they can afford to hire her.  Anyway she has done well with her hobby and compulsion to clean up.  I have made much progress, even at this late stage of life.  Much of life life has been spent rejecting my true nature, which is not chaotic and self destructive.  Even though it seems so.  That is reactive.  Reactive depression or just reaction.

People only harass or try to criticize others for things that aren't theirs to critique, when they can get away with it.  Hi, I'm your friend, your life sucks, your writing sucks, you should do so much better.  I only say this because I am a friend, and friends don't let friends under achieve.  Really?

That is the rationale of one whose concept of personal boundaries has been bastardized under veil of some altruistic sounding rationalizations.   End result is, the critic wields some kind of power as long as you sit still for it; "You should...blablabla"  Critic dictating down to you.  It is an ego trip.  Worst thing is, such people get furious at your reluctance to be harangued over that which is not anyone else's business.  Unbelievable, but a sign of the times.  Everyone loves excuses which give them license to judge, control, and critique the lives of others.

Like drugs were used to kill the 4th amendment, smoking was perfect for giving people the excuse to exercise power over others.  Certainly there was some element of legitimacy.  You don't smoke in confined areas forcing others to put up with your smoke.   But then it became a thing of fanatics making a big show of coughing and bitching when you were outdoors and downwind of them.

Then public officials start involving themselves in your diet, your obesity, your sugar intake, etc.   Public health costs is the rationale, yet most of those officials are bloated and over indulgent, themselves.  Ridiculous that people go right along.  Any excuse to push into the lives and business of others, while taking money from them at gunpoint.

So, obviously, whatever that school of thought is that says, "it's OK for friends to demean and judge friends in the name of their higher good", is not a school of thought to which I adhere.  Never liked it.  I think it is where politicians, mostly democrats, but repubs, too, as well as public schools, made me sick to my stomach.  They love that soviet style of intrusive propaganda and use of force to make you go along with it.

Work is too weird to describe.  One minute I expect to be fired, the next, I am in demand to solve problems.  The manager almost never listens.  His solutions are the craziest things I have ever heard.  I do my best to present things to him in such a way that he is not encouraged to give a point of view or solution.  I won't try to recall a good example.  It is often some impossible suggestion or is actually what we suggested originally but he nixed it, and now he is suggesting it like it is a new brilliant thought.  OK.

The best thing is that my Texas pals will be back to play a gig in Alpine on Sat.  I am their harp guy, so I will be playing.  They will be trying to figure out how to get me to move to their area in the Austin area.  I hear Austin is not what it was.  It is getting a little obnoxious, as far as the music scene.

But outlying areas in TX are going full guns if you are country, and probably being a badass Marine scout sniper doesn't hurt.

I refuse to give in to whatever "it" is; depression, psychosis, neurosis, fatigue, chronic conundrum, etc.   I do give in but not entirely.  I am not giving up.



Wednesday, April 19, 2017

A Long Lost Friend, Gone for the Duration

My friend, Pat, from back in when I last lived in Miami kicked the damned bucket.  I only found out because I had an impulse to, once again, see if I could find him from online search.  That search had been futile in the past.

This time the search pulled up his obituary.   It went into very little detail.  At least survivors were listed. It said he died in a particular hospital in GA., but did not give cause or illness.  Nothing.  Very strange.  No idea when they moved to Georgia.

He was a real estate broker turned lawn maintenance entrepreneur in the late 80's, early 90's.  My first full time job after quitting drinking.  One of my favorite of all time.  We did a lot of large condo complexes and such.  He would always vary where we started and such until he hit the optimal plan, often cutting a day, or half a day off the 2 or 3 day job.  It did not seem like it would make a difference, but it did.

I only left that job because I was getting migraines and couldn't handle the sun.  And I kind of felt under-employed when I considered how others must view me.  (One or more girlfriends looked down on it, I could tell--always ignore snobby chicks or status fools) In reality I thoroughly enjoyed the hard work, being in shape, and Pat's ever present humor and wisdom.  The kindness and friendship he showed were big influences on my life at that time.

It never ceases to amaze me how slow I am to catch on to things with people.  Anyway, you would have had to be there to see how he ran things differently from any lawn operation I'd seen.  We were like the Florida A & M Rattlers band and the competition was like a normal high school marching band.

I had no idea running a weed eater could be such an art, and that you could literally run with it once you became good.  I had no idea of any of it.  I thought I was in fair shape the first day.  I was addressing some kind of block long hedge in a sidewalk.  Either I was to use the weed whacker to shape the hedge or to edge, or both--don't recall.  I remember him laughing at my first efforts, showing me how you do it.  How he discovered this is beyond me.  I was heavily winded all day.  Soon, I was an ace, not winded, but always drenched in sweat. Miami.

He got out of the real estate brokering for a developer gig because he'd burned out, and likely alcohol didn't help.  He enjoyed the lawn business, especially getting commercial accounts.  And in Miami he said it was like shooting fish in a barrel.  I never tried that but I hear it is easy.

I remember him saying, as we were hanging out at place where you achieve and maintain sobriety, if you can, "You know anyone looking for a job?".  I said I was.  He couldn't believe I would do such work.  He had no idea how lost and frazzled I was, I guess.  Anyway, he really did like my contribution to the success of his company.

I'm sure he had little idea how much I admired him.  I do think his wife considered anyone from the getting sober world a bit below her.  She also seemed to think the landscape biz was below her too.  I get it.  Especially in Miami I always felt that kind of attitude; ridiculing and status bullying.   But Pat seemed to love it.  In the few cases where we did residences, Pat spent more time with his ubiquituous cup of coffee and cigarette, schmoozing the owners, than he did working.  But our job was to make him and his business look good.  It turns out most of the residential clients had bought their houses from him.

As much as I try to pretend I would never be ashamed of honest work, I often felt I was hitting rock bottom and was somehow sabotaging myself into humiliation of under employment, and blablabla.  Nonsense though it is, I used that to torture my mind I guess.  Pat was a good lesson.  He had a nice house, boat, family, cold though his wife seemed, stability.  Never have I had that for any length of time.  He was only a few years older than I am.   Maybe lung cancer, or melanoma from the Miami sun, got him.

Another of those amazing teachers in life, gone.  I lost contact long ago, and tried now and then to reconnect.  Of course, it has often been tough for others to find me.  Odd, since I am all over the danged interweaving.

You had it more together than I realized.  It has taken me a lifetime to even begin to get what is really important.   Thank you, friend, for all of it.   You were the real deal.

dear joel, re-read, there will be a reading comprehension test---fail it again and you'll have to repeat a grade

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Well, it's five six seven eight, open up the Pearly Gates..

Here we go again, in so many ways.  Syria, schmyria, that is what I say.  But not when I am in Syria.   Or even when confined in a room with Syrians.  Could happen.

I am almost sure the bombing was the wrong thing to do.  I base that purely upon the favorable press the move garnered from both repub and demos.  If they agree, then it is probably a thing of deception and evil. Just is.

Then there is all the false flag speculation. Maybe one of the theories of inside job will be accurate. One says that Putin staged it all so that Trump could look good like he was standing up to Russia.  Seems to be a stretch, but that hasn't stopped the ongoing press for the last three months.  Relentless and often transparently biased but very lame in the attacks.  You run out of ammo if you never take your finger off the trigger and you are wielding an automatic.

I get the same feeling as when Clinton bombed weird stuff and found Bosnia worth going to war over.  I still think that may be debatable.  Anyway, democrats love war.  Yet they successfully claim to be the outfit of peace.  Like how Vietnam worked.   I take it back.  They only love wars that never end and which give them a chance to harass those fighting.  Rules of engagement, second guessing why a terrorist got shot.  In a war zone.  I do not know how the military manages to take orders from these nitwits and narcissists.  Two in a row.  But one at least likes them.  Still.  I couldn't do it under the circumstances, even though  I'm beginning to understand those who do.

And there's discussion that this is a proxy war between the Saudi allies and the Iranian allies.  The Shite Muslims vs the other ones. (I know. It is my prejudice coming through. At least I added the e.)

All I can say is I wish I would have gone into sales for one of the companies who make million dollar bullets.  I handle Tomahawk missile sales.  I always hope they miss the first time, so they have to buy more.  Rumors that my company creates fake targets to deceive our troops into deploying various expensive rockets and missiles and such are totally untrue.

I understand the chemical attack was sadistic and barbaric.  Not sure there is or isn't proof of origin. However we haven't bombed N. Korea, even though that little clown fed his own uncle to hungry dogs.  And has done quite a number on his people.  We did not stop China from murdering millions over the years.  On and on.  I am not buying the story.  But I do not have an alternative.

I do not know what is true, or what our ultimate objectives actually are in foreign policy, but this ain't it.  This just seems contrived.  But that is what I said about Gulf War one.  At least that looked like a quick in and gone operation.  Does seem to have resulted in lasting peace and prosperity except for the arms and bullet salesmen.

It is a relief to see a slight lull in some of the ridiculous, rabid onslaught of anti-Trump press and relentless propaganda.  Ever hear of overkill?  Over the top?   Scary damn people.  Scarier than the people they are screaming about, and I admit there are some scary people in power.  Most people in power do not have the strength of character not to abuse it.  Just look and condo and home owner associations.  Petty power and they go crazy.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Fear Itself

Every once in awhile, if things feel totally out of my control, in certain contexts, I experience a bit of fear.  Odd physical manifestations can do that, as well as governmental presence, whether they are there to help or punish.  Governmental entities and practices probably generate more fear than most other things in life.  Seriously.

A friend of mine was on the streets for well over a decade.  He is intelligent, and everyone likes him.   A Viet Nam vet.   But that is not actually what landed him on the street.  He had a rather creative wife who managed to mangle finances and else prior to divorce.  Then there came tax issues.

Somehow my friend ended up in a catch 22 sort of thing.  If he earned anything on the books, the IRS and his wife took it all, except less than a hundred a month, or something close.  Eventually, he said screw it.  He went to the black market economy trading in black market commodities which left him more spending money.

He finally became a drunk and druggie, eventually becoming a hard core homeless type.  Vestiges of what war does to people, especially the crazy ass way they conducted that war, certainly affected him.  But the real point is that without a workable way to appease that criminal government agency, this guy could no longer cope.

As big a jerk as my father may have seemed, the IRS really did a number on him in his final years.  I find it next to criminal that somehow, maybe 8 years after he died, they decided they'd raped him for close to $100K in excess of what even they thought they were due.  So, they refunded to his re-married widow.  Some reached my brother and I through a technicality.  Nothing she could do about it  

I think it is sick that they reduced him to a miserable existence and then refund the excess after he died.  He was no angel and lacked any sort of tact or diplomatic savvy, but that does not excuse their actions.  He was right to tell that auditor he was "a slimy little man in a slimy little job".  Not a wise utterance but true.  I've met tax auditors and I cannot say I ever met one I respected or liked.  They are vicious and hate the public.

Anyway, my only main fear is if I died before things were in good enough order.  Getting there.  I don't think my music friends realize how it is sometimes very tricky getting to, and through, gigs sometimes.  Overall, I have improved over the past year, but once in awhile I get caught off guard and feel less than well.

I don't even read the MPN updates all the time.  Even though that is my best source of info re treatments, what others experience, doctors  of note, etc.  Great resource, but I can only indulge so much.  It is the complete life of several patients; researching and being involved with all that the condition entails.  Even running around the town to make money for MPN research, whatever it is called.  

I think maybe the MPN non profits are too new and too tied in with patients to be the big scam that most things like Cancer Society and other medical charities are.   They are out of business if major breakthroughs or cures come to fruition.

Fatigue and nausea can be very sneaky.  You cannot rest your way out of fatigue.  Movement, and exercise are the best things to reduce the feeling that your legs are rubber.   Very tough to just ignore the wobbly fatigue feeling and do what needs doing.   Not impossible.

I sometimes have energy.  It is probably the manic cycle.  It does help if I can get myself moving so that the mania kind of picks me up and counters the exhaustion.  

The fact that I am less plagued by the itching attacks and that mess, and am able to do more in some ways, indicates that maybe I am reducing this stuff to whatever its minimal condition is.
Babbling I guess.  Well, if I kick any time, this will be of some interest.  What is annoying is the shooting sensations that hit my legs or feet or arms and hands often at night.  Maybe it is what they mean by bone pain.  It is not like you can touch it and have any influence.  It is deeper or something.

Life.

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Ballistic Mountain, CA, United States
Like spring on a summer's day

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