Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Hot Cross Buns Which Yonder Bake, I Cannot Deign But Ask For

(or Hum Drum Yum-Yum)

Whereupon thence came a squire begging sustenance, I challenged him to square his bill with harlequance bound by honor in the field of trifling nobility.

“What say ye, varlet, accept the gauntlet of broader virtue set in fire or pander thy braided locks in honey-dipped farthings suckled far into the blackest night?”

“Swash my bloody buckles, I recompense no other than softest tresses set by noblest crests of scurried blather”, he called to me, his too-round swail of pig-oaf buttress offensive to my frenzied sight.

From my bearded scabbard flew the jaded wrath upon which all contrails of ne’er-benign fury rest until the frosted breath of inner sanctum’s purloined passion call them out to finer times set in nature’s breast.

Fierce swelter came upon his moistened brow, as once his trembling hands bid me naught but lustless swill from haggard bowels. “Are you not of grueling sort, quick to nescient plunder, caring neither more for men than zen?”

“What say thee? Beyond the reach of bended knees at rest in sodden mire thy countless sins abound, no more than ample treat I suspect and duly void ‘til once a votive plaint is heard on yonder echoed dale? Speak up, lest I once again curse thee to a place of sanction lacking all but licit charm!”

Softened clouds of envy cast upon him and gnarled his oaken stumps as once again his newfound crimson soul came flaming out of conscience held in strictest safehold. “I am but a nozzled lute, my liege, strung from none-fine gut and left to rot in torrents past— safe from none and from all, a gifted instrument by which thy pleasures flow, if a half-quaver out of tune and lacking holy tones of roundness.”

“Far-freaking-out!” I bellowed, “Come… sit… eat your fill, then we shall taunt each other once more.”

Then sated truffles once beaten passed from within, sent bounding upon the scales, free from rent and bother, curious of scented breeze and loftless curse, nigh to twice-baked pleasures scaffolded upon our ponce.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Your Time Is Up...

Recently, for reasons that elude me, I’ve begun to think about eternity and I’m not entirely convinced I understand the concept. Certainly, men have always contemplated the vague nuances of time and formulated theories (notions, really) of how its vastness may affect their lives. Then, having come to the conclusion that any amount of time larger than that immediately influencing their present existence becomes cumbersome, they begin to assign importance to smaller, more manageable allotments.

So, eternity, that omega of existence’ allocation, pops its head up with such frequency in the speech and writing of man as to lose any meaning save that justifying its use by the speaker. I suppose it serves of its own merit, giving benefit to a multitude of expressions rendered inept without it.

“From Here to Eternity”, for example… this duplicitous phrase provided the literary stimulus to create both a novel and a 1953 movie starring Frank Sinatra, Burt Lancaster and Deborah Kerr. However, what does it mean, in any literal sense? Sure, it’s flowery and sophisticated, evoking nebulous realizations of issues beyond our comprehension, but unless Eternity becomes a suburb of Los Angeles or maybe Pocatello, it is little more than thought provoking.

“The eternal struggle”… “Eternally yours”… So it can also accept both adjectival and adverbial importance? My, my, my— this is one influential word.

Of course, its definition only has value in context of itself and its brother, infinity. Both concepts seem to encompass both time and spirituality. Without that association, there can be no semi-concrete encapsulation of God. “Eternal Father”… “Infinite Wisdom”… pretty powerful stuff, wouldn’t you agree?

I think this is the point where I start to lose my way; this is where I begin to feel the slightest bit manipulated. I know I’m going to die one day— it’s simply a biological eventuality. I also know that in all likelihood, time, in its Einsteinian perseverance, will continue to ‘pass’, if indeed that’s what really happens since time itself is an invention of man. However, without the metaphysical linkage of eternity and belief in an infinite deity, I have no hope of eternal life. Of course, this hope is predicated on a vast and complicated belief system designed to take advantage of my fear of death and desire to never really pass out of existence. Is it only a side benefit to me that these exact same fears, coupled with the day-to-day fears that most people naturally exhibit, form the basis of religion as social control?

To a junkie, eternity can be attached to the quest for his next eight ball of smack. An expectant mother enduring the early pains of labor must certainly think that it will take forever for her baby to arrive. We all reach Heaven in our own way, in our own time, regardless of expressed truisms or inexact utterances of profundity.

A specious argument, you say? Perhaps, but personally, I cannot see how eternity could be any longer than 5, 641,793 earth-years (on the 12th day of July, of course)… but that’s just me.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Granite, Gravity and Grace

There, upon the rock, facing the stream, Ricky sat. Knees scrunched up against his chest, arms wrapped across his shins with interlaced fingers securing and giving him balance against the northerly breeze, head perched neatly on top of his knees with eyes focused on nothing but the eternal passage of the swift current, he waited and contemplated. Somewhere, birds called to their mates and taxis beeped warnings to impeding traffic, Serbian women chattered in a complicated Croatian dialect while hanging wet laundry on the line, yet not a single sound nor extraneous thought penetrated his realm as it existed today; not rushing water, not thunder, not Elijah trumpeting his clarion call throughout the world.

The rock, huge and round and placed precisely on a promontory he’d selected and designated his own, felt soft and cool to his touch. No outcroppings or imperfections of any sort offended his fingers as they lightly traced the water-and-wind-burnished surface. How many birds, lizards, squirrels, chipmunks, snakes or other humans had shared his window into eternity? Had they shared his quiet awe of this majestic place? Why did the water rush by, seemingly ignoring the upper majority in support of the much smaller and less visually acute base? Do water secrets exist down there, protected from prying eyes by fathoms of froth and algae and legions of water plants? Maybe one day he’d dive into the icy race and try to hold on long enough to investigate, to ply his strength against the current, to search for any hand hold, to feel his lungs threaten to burst against the pressures of the depth and to know the exhilaration of impending doom.

Maybe… but not today. Today Ricky claimed his satisfaction just sitting and wondering if his rock loved him as much. After all, it’s hard to really know the emotions of a ten-ton hunk of granite eroded by eons of wind and water. Had he sufficient intellect to claim comprehension of such complexities, perhaps he wouldn’t be here at all.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Bill of Rights Requiem

Congratulations, America, you’ve finally done it. The Bill of Rights is officially a dead document. I hope you sleep better now, safe in the knowledge that your government can now come drag you out of your bed and imprison you for as long as they see fit, not once ever affording you the opportunity to seek counsel or, for that matter, even telling you the offense for which you are being held. What’s more, they can, at their pleasure, force you to submit to all manners of techniques designed to make you tell them anything they want to hear.

In the name of ‘national security’, the current administration has effectively killed the concept of habeus corpus, the constitutional safeguard in civilized countries designed to protect individual freedoms against arbitrary state action. “Produce the body” it says… let the public see the accused, let us put a face to her/him. And once he’s been produced, then we, as citizens, have the opportunity to follow the proceedings by which s/he’s adjudicated, and judge for ourselves whether the law has been judiciously applied.

But no more. With the stroke of a pen, George W. Bush has countermanded over two hundred years of Constitutional observance in our country. Now, any citizen or non-citizen can be whisked off to some secret prison of the government’s choosing and held against her/his will for as long as the government deems proper, without being charged of any crimes, with no safeguards to the liberties guaranteed under our Bill of Rights.

In case you’re not a strong student of history, this is not anything new. We saw a pretty good example of this during the last century in Germany. It is now officially our army against the world, and I guarantee you that if someone doesn’t wake up soon, we are in for very dark days.

But it is our decision, or at least we’re led to believe that our votes still count, although after the recent debacles in Florida and Ohio an argument could be made that such is not the case. So when you pull the lever on that voting machine, make damned sure you know who and what you’re voting for.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

This just in...

When I awoke this morning and struggled into the bathroom, I suddenly realized that at one time I held the record for being the world’s youngest human.

And now I’m not…

not even close.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Happy Columbo Day!

I normally don’t make a big deal out of holidays, but today is an exception. There is a very special feeling I get when I think about the man we honor today. How many people can you think of who brought so much enlightenment to succeeding generations? Plus, to my knowledge, unlike a certain explorer whose name sounds similar, he didn't have to rape, pillage or kill anyone!

Happy Columbo Day, everyone!

Monday, October 02, 2006

Forbidden Fruit Feeding Frenzy

No story today, I’m afraid, my cranial soft tissue participants have called in sick. My parietal is not societal, my temporal lobe has lost its temper, my sensory cortex is nonsensical and my motor cortex is in the shop for maintenance. That leaves only my occipital and frontal lobes to run my brain stem and I just spilled a cup of coffee on my keyboard, so I think it best to just shut it down before I start trying to justify nonsense like the invasion of Iraq. I only wish the Shrub had been as considerate.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Your Sunday Dictionary

Defiance is a commodity seldom rewarded and almost never emulated in a society content to preserve the status quo. How many times have I heard it? ‘Get along by going along.’ ‘Don’t rock the boat.’ ‘The meek shall inherit the earth.’

The very definitions of defiance apply a negative connotation: 1. Intentionally contemptuous behavior or attitude 2. A hostile challenge. If you are defiant, you are hostile. If you are defiant, you are contemptuous. Is there no common ground whereupon defiance could be considered commendable or, at the very least, illusory?

Am I the only one who doesn’t consider myself a radical because I choose defiance of a belief system that deems the invasion and attempted conquest of another nation to be acts of self-defense worthy, even laudable, by the majority of its citizenry?

Well, I’ll let you in on a secret. Are you listening? Move just a little closer— I can’t say it too loud for fear the Thought Police may be monitoring this correspondence. Here it is: The Emperor has no clothes.

That’s right, you heard me. He’s naked to the world, he’s been exposed and he’s the only one who can’t see it. Of course, the rest of the world is looking at this entire nation’s pink derrieres and shaking their heads. We are, you see, mirror images of him, and his reflection casts us as a collective Shrub clone; obsequious, contemptible, toadie cattle who support and endorse the most blood-thirsty regime ever to take up residence at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC, 20500.

I hereby claim the title ‘defiant’, complete with all its negative images, and refuse to care what any of you think of me. I know of your contention that I am not a patriot, even though I spent nearly two years in Southeast Asia in defense of my country. That’s okay, too, because I know it gives you great satisfaction to don your blinders and wave Old Glory as you commit atrocity after atrocity and deplete our coffers of funds that could benefit our citizens.

Just don’t think I’m stupid enough to drink the Kool-Aid myself. I enjoyed a glass or two as a nineteen-year-old and I’m still trying to get the taste out of my mouth.