In Light Of A Bohemian Smile

God gave us the gift of life; it is up to us to give ourselves the gift of living well.
– Voltaire
Every moment is a golden one for him who has the vision to recognize it as such.
– Henry Miller

 

How easy is it for you to smile? Can you manage a fake one? Do you need someone’s help? Go on and give it a shot.

A few mornings ago, I looked in the mirror; it was my birthday. I’m 49 – a little older and a lot wiser with still lots to learn. Ok, maybe ‘learn’ is not the right sentiment; maybe ‘make sense of’ is. In any event, I think the older I get, the more I scratch my head over life, which no doubt might be the reason for my thinning hair! Still, compared with other male members of my family, past and present, I still have plenty of hair on my head, so I really shouldn’t complain.

Indeed, I have a lot to smile about and day by day I try really really hard to remind myself of that. If you blink though, you might miss it.

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Weed Whackers

PROLOGUE:

Herb: In the known universe there are beings that never quite question their existence. They wander wildly through the underbrush of society, slowly strangling the life out of all within their grasp, including themselves. It’s senseless. 

 

DIALOGUE:

Charlie: And so it begins, our journey … our wandering.

Ivy: I wonder … will we wander in vain? Is there a point to all this creeping about?

St. John: About our destiny,  yes. And, we must have faith in our function, our purpose, our very reason for being.

Charlie: Being that you know so much about life, the universe and everything, don’t you think it’s about time we questioned our existence and that which drives us?

Ivy: What drives us is life itself. Isn’t it? 

St. John: It is! Our very existence demands we kowtow and bow to the will of what we were born to do.

Charlie: Do tell! We are slaves to our wills then … or the wills of our nature … and after we do whatever it is we are supposed to do then what happens? What then?

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Drones, Probes And Creative Sorts

Jump in the pigpen,
next time I’ll take my shoes off
Hit the dirt doing two-and-a-half,
next time I’ll leave my hat on…
– Brian Wilson / Van Dyke Parks (Barnyard)

 

Years ago, the prevailing wisdom was that if you traveled too far in one direction, you would eventually fall off the planet. Many years later, the ‘flat top’ hairstyle was all the rage. I’ll leave it to you to connect the dots.

Sometime over the next few months the Voyager 1 spacecraft, first launched in 1977, will cross the line separating our solar system and interstellar space. Of course, there is much conjecture over what exactly will happen once the space probe leaves the warmth of our Sun’s heliosphere and the solar winds that have egged it on along its path.

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Artful Dodgers In The Blogosphere Mist

Spare us your wisdom
and send us your cash.
A twenty or a fifty …
… or something like that.
– Send Us Your Money (Judd Jugmonger)

Bloggers make for interesting sorts. Many start out as artists with their ‘craft’ in mind, and end up as marketers with ‘sales’ on their minds. The transmogrification of this species usually follows this pattern: I think therefore I am. I am therefore I create. I’m hungry. In fact, I’m starving. So, I create therefore I sell.

Today I read a post on another blog about writing. Well, actually it was about marketing under the guise of writing because no one with any flair for ‘the creative’ really wants to be a salesman. It’s true, isn’t it? If so, why do there seem to be so many blogging ‘artful dodgers’ in the blogosphere?

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Better A Living Dog Than A Dead Lion

Acting is the expression of a neurotic impulse.
It’s a bum’s life.
Quitting acting, that’s the sign of maturity.
– Marlon Brando

 

 

 

Preface:
The following is not a conversation. It is an introspective monologue with accompanying commentary, perhaps spoken by a chorus, a collective I’ll call ‘Rael’. If you can figure out who the ‘Id’ is, you’ll understand at least half the story.

They say that discretion is the better part of valor. They also say that “the discretion of a man deferreth his anger; and it is his glory to pass over a transgression (Proverbs 19:11). Actually, they say a lot of things, but these days, I try hard not to listen anymore, and in the end, I’m glad that I have forgotten probably more than I ever knew.

Id:
Once upon a time there was me. Some years later I was taken away from whom I was in order to live a life I did not choose, or want.

Rael:
Choice is an illusion. Your path was chosen for you long before you were even born. In fact, it’s in your blood to be who you are supposed to be. As far as ‘wants’ are concerned, you need not want for anything, for wants will be your downfall.

Id:
In fact, it was less a life, and more an existence. I say ‘existence’ in that I was existing, but it really wasn’t a life, at least not the one I had previously imagined for myself.

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A Mess of Ideas Defying Expectations

Hung velvet overtaken me
Dim chandelier awaken me
To a song dissolved in the dawn
The music hall a costly bow
The music all is lost for now
To a muted trumpeter swan
Columnated ruins domino
– Surf’s Up (Brian Wilson & Van Dyke Parks)I have an idea, but it begs the following questions:

  • Why is it easier to make a mess of some things than to just sort them out in the first place?
  • Why is it harder to achieve greatness than mediocrity?
  • Why is it easier to say ‘no’ than ‘yes’?
  • Why is it easier to go nowhere and do nothing than to set out on an adventure?
  • Why do so many adventures we set out on come up short?
  • Why do things implode with less intensity than they explode?

These are the types of questions equally raised by the hopeful and the hopeless; the dreamers and the depressed. They are part and parcel of the same enigmatic shaded overtones of our existence, and fail to answer what we are supposed to do with it.

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My Morning Constitutional

On more than many a morning, I wake to find the silence deafening. I sigh, acknowledging the cliche. All the while, the tension mounts just beyond my window, resonating off people, buildings, technology and wheeled transport – works in progress all. Yes, there are delights unseen awaiting, broiling us in microwaves of undulating currents, modulating the air we choke on.I’ve yet to rise, but I’m already on my way. My eye stings, my nose runs, my breath already soured from stale sleep. A short while later, the comfort of breakfast soothes and then bloats.

I am hurried to venture nothing with nothing to gain but the unholy pursuit itself that drives me to distraction. It’s a sacred ritual for some; it’s death to me. The loss of precious moments, youth, exuberance and creativity.

I think that I am, but perhaps I’m not. Eager to purge this allergen, I scratch, but the irritation persists. There is no ointment for this inflammation. No creams. Not even a poultice or a vapor rub.

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