No Bigger Than a Walnut

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“Man’s inability to get out of bed in the morning is a curious thing. One may reason with oneself clearly and forcibly without the slightest effect. One knows that delay means inconvenience. Perhaps it may spoil one’s whole day. And one also knows that a single resolute heave will do the trick. But logic is of no use. One simply lies there.” ~ P. G. Wodehouse

“What a queer thing Life is! So unlike anything else, don’t you know, if you see what I mean.” ~ P. G. Wodehouse

“Once you can accept the universe as matter expanding into nothing that is something, wearing stripes with plaid comes easy.”  ~ Albert Einstein

Daylight is rising on the dull side of blue. Grayish stuff, if you can call light stuff. Considering the mental state I am in I could easily call light dude and feel okay about it. Let’s run with that. Today is a lazy day. That doesn’t meant I will do nothing. It means that anything I do will be done lazily. Except maybe if some nitwit in traffic requires me to do otherwise. There is always that guy out there. Which brings to mind the odd fact that I always think the stupid tailgater behind me is a man, not a woman. If any of you women out there are indeed tailgaters please keep it to yourself. I loathe being divested of my fantasies. BTW, I love that sentence. Just sayin’.


A short while ago I went out to witness the sunrise. There are some fine lookin’ clouds out today, all proud with slightly curly waves. Out over the higher peaks there was one section where the shapes in the clouds made it appear as if there was another, higher peak out back of Vallecitos Peak. That phantom peak eventually faded away, but I enjoyed it while I could. My thoughts are like that at times. Like yesterday, when I had a brief conversation with a big ol’ raven. He was quite adamant about whatever it was he was telling me, and I was like all “Dude, chill. What are you trying to tell me?”. He never did explain himself, or if he did explain himself I totally missed out on a good one. My loss, I’m sure. But it got me to wondering about his species. Researchers have found that ravens are right up there, if not above, dolphins and higher primates, when it comes to intelligence. Ravens, with a brain no bigger than a walnut, can perform complex tool building tasks. A walnut?! Really? I have always been under the impression that I, as a human, am so smart because my brain is big. Vonnegut, in his novel Galapagos speculated that our brains are too big. It’s all very confusing. But I enjoyed my chat with that raven. And I bid him good day as he flew away. Out through the window I can see the day is looking good. I can see it regardless of being in a rather strong downswing in mood. It happens. The bipolar disorder does not define me, and it will swing away, seemingly with caprice, regardless of my desire for it to be gone. There has simply got to be a purpose there somewhere. I’ll not look for it today, however. In fact I may just go for a long drive, to look for nothing in particular. It makes the car happy when I do that. Gas mileage goes up and stays up for ’bout a week afterwards. They say it’s gonna snow tonight, and the clouds leading up to it will put on quite a show. I’ll be there to witness the show, wherever “there” is.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

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Expressing in the Dark of Morning

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“A warrior of the Light is never in a hurry. Time works in his favor; he learns to master his impatience and avoids acting without thinking.” ~ Paulo Coehlo

“Your friends will know you better in the first minute you meet than your acquaintances will know you in a thousand years.” ~ Richard Bach

“Deep in the human unconscious is a pervasive need for a logical universe that makes sense. But the real universe is always one step beyond logic.” ~ Frank Herbert

There’s a perspective I never thought of before, but it came to me not more than one hour ago. I mean . . . one of the greatest pleasures of living inside this box of a room is that first step outside, in the dark part of morning, after a good night’s sleep. (Well, last night’s sleep was good. That’s been rare lately.) That’s a pleasure, yes. But this morning that pleasure took off and expanded into joy and wonder. It was coyotes that did it. First a low-toned howl off to the north. That went on a few times before the scope of the situation showed itself. Two more animals responded, and they were right outside the fence. Calls were exchanged and repeated a few times. And then it suddenly seemed like there were coyotes everywhere! It’s been a long time since I heard a performance like that. Joy and wonder, right? Boy howdy was it ever. It didn’t last though — not the sounds, anyway. In that eerie, precise way they do, all of the animals simply stopped on a dime. All of them, at the exact same moment. And then silence. It was as if they took every other sound in the dark away with them. Or maybe it was my inner silence taking over. It all became peace and joy and wonder for a time. Not a bad way to start the day. Never mind that the beasts stole a part of the morning. Remember, Coyote is a Trickster. He can fool you just as easy as you breath. He actually stole nothing but my anxiety and self-absorption. I oughtta thank him for that, and likely I will. No hurry, I’ve got all day. Trickster Coyote is all about balance, about that alchemical flow of quicksilver that runs in a thin line that forms the boundary between the yins and yangs of life. Quicksilver is a poetic term to describe mercury. Mercury — the god, not element — is a Trickster as well. What lessons will the Trickster bring today? That question is one of those questions that is best left without an answer. Answerless questions can function as a lodestone. That’s what will draw me forth today. Motion forward, trusted, with no preferred goal or outcome. All because there were wild mammals, expressing in the dark of morning. If that ain’t magick I don’t know what is.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

And So It Goes

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“One of the things that baffles me (and there are quite a few) is how there can be so much lingering stigma with regards to mental illness, specifically bipolar disorder. In my opinion, living with manic depression takes a tremendous amount of balls. Not unlike a tour of Afghanistan (though the bombs and bullets, in this case, come from the inside). At times, being bipolar can be an all-consuming challenge, requiring a lot of stamina and even more courage, so if you’re living with this illness and functioning at all, it’s something to be proud of, not ashamed of. They should issue medals along with the steady stream of medication.” ~ Carrie Fischer

“Writing is very hard mostly because until you try to write something down, it’s easy to fool yourself into believing you understand things. Writing is terrible for vanity and self-delusion.” ~ Mark Vonnegut

“Panic attacks are a lot like being drunk in some ways, you lose self-control. You cry for seemingly no reason. You deal with the hangover long into the next day.” ~ Sara Barnard

There are a few dogs barking in the dark this morning. At first they failed to convince me that there are coyotes nearby. I’m still not certain. I always hope to hear the wild beasts, because they raise my spirits. But I was just outside and a few more dogs chimed in. Hmm, maybe. I had nearly convinced myself that the first barks I heard earlier were simply gripes about violation of contract by someone leaving the dog out in the cold overnight. Moving forward — I missed writing a post yesterday for the very same reason I don’t friggin feel like writing a post this morning. I am forcing myself to do it anyway, under the guise of self-discipline and dedication to my craft. Well, maybe the latter is not so much of a guise. Gotta give myself a dose of compassion once in a while. Admittedly, I have had a bad few days as far as anxiety and depression goes; and it can go far. No, I am not off of my meds, and even if I was I wouldn’t go out and kill people. That’s another reason I didn’t post yesterday — I found the shooting down in Florida to be deeply disturbing, to the point where I was bereft of creativity. And then our game show host of a president goes on and talks solely about mental illness. Dude, that like reinforces the stigma. The fact is that with mental illness you are far more likely to be the victim of violence than you are the perpetrator. Just sayin’, dude. You can take your stigma and stick it where the sun don’t shine, dude. Likely that is what you did. Anyway — I shouldn’t let the prez distract me so — though he is a master of distraction, just as he is a master of deception. I had a psychotherapy session yesterday, and we drifted into the worldly parts of the head trauma I sustained concurrently with my NDE, back oh those many years ago. One of the possible side-effects of an NDE is that no one is likely to want to hear about it, because it is so friggin strange. I’ll give it that, it is strange. But I was having a hard enough time adapting to the head trauma. Brain rattled like jello in a storm. That kind of stuff. The professionals at the Trauma Center had told me I didn’t have a concussion, and I was like “dude, what’s your point?”. That was a tough time for me. My perception of the world was all cattywampus and new, compounded with further trauma from nearly everyone I knew turning a blind, deaf, whatever, ear to my tales of celestial journey. And so it goes. As I described what I went through I lost my words a few times, because the more I told the therapist about what happened with the worldly stuff the more the celestial stuff washed through and over me. Such vastness, such cosmic certainty, is beyond words. So my story of isolation brought me smack up against feelings of universal inclusion. NDEs can do that to ya. Some peeps (about 25%, statistically speaking) go all Love and Light with it. Not me. I felt the Love and Light part, but it  seemed not to hold much sway against the trauma, and the likelihood that a genetic predisposition toward bipolar disorder seems to have been triggered into actuality by the bicycle accident that started the whole friggin mess. Poor me, right? Also the head trauma gave birth to PTSD. Neither disorder got diagnosed and medicated for nearly 30 years. Which brings me back to the present. Those feelings of vastness during the session yesterday brought my breath into focus, and heightened my senses, up front and present. This morning those feelings linger, but the trauma, the fear, is moving back in. No biggie. It happens all the time. Wow. I was gonna write about the snow night before last, and the two steps beyond magnificent cloud show yesterday. I just had to mention it anyway, before I wrap up this post. At least I get to enter this workday with the hopeful romantic thing goin’ on. Yeh, something good happened on Valentine’s Day. Not a big thing, but it brought my senses up front and present. And so it goes.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

 

Quotes From Three of My Favorite Authors

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Scraggly

“Stories, like people and butterflies and songbirds’ eggs and human hearts and dreams, are also fragile things, made up of nothing stronger or more lasting than twenty-six letters and a handful of punctuation marks. Or they are words on the air, composed of sounds and ideas-abstract, invisible, gone once they’ve been spoken-and what could be more frail than that? But some stories, small, simple ones about setting out on adventures or people doing wonders, tales of miracles and monsters, have outlasted all the people who told them, and some of them have outlasted the lands in which they were created.” ~ Neil Gaiman

“Past the flannel plains and blacktop graphs and skylines of canted rust, and past the tobacco-brown river overhung with weeping trees and coins of sunlight through them on the water downriver, to the place beyond the windbreak, where untilled fields simmer shrilly in the A.M. heat: shattercane, lambsquarter, cutgrass, saw brier, nutgrass, jimson-weed, wild mint, dandelion, foxtail, spinecabbage, goldenrod, creeping Charlie, butterprint, nightshade, ragweed, wild oat, vetch, butcher grass, invaginate volunteer beans, all heads nodding in a soft morning breeze like a mother’s hand on your check. An arrow of starlings fired from the windbreak’s thatch. The glitter of dew that stays where it is and steams all day. A Sunflower, four more one bowed, and horses in the distance standing rigid as toys. All nodding. Electric sounds of insects at their business. Ale-colored sunshine and pale sky and whorls of cirrus so high they cast no shadow. Insects all business all the time. Quartz and chert and schist and chondrite iron scabs in granite. Very old land. Look around you. The horizon trembling, shapeless. We are all of us brothers.” ~ David Foster Wallace

“We sleep, allowing gravity to hold us, allowing Earth- our larger body- to recalibrate our neurons, composting the keen encounters of our waking hours (the tensions and terrors of our individual days), stirring them back, as dreams, into the sleeping substance of our muscles. We give ourselves over to the influence of the breathing earth. Sleep is the shadow of the earth as it seeps into our skin and spreads throughout our limbs, dissolving our individual will into the thousand and one selves that compose it- cells, tissues, and organs taking their prime directives now from gravity and the wind- as residual bits of sunlight, caught in the long tangle of nerves, wander the drifting landscape of our earth-borne bodies like deer moving across the forested valleys.” ~ David Abram

Batteries for a Vagrant

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Justin

 

“Kindness is really at the core of what it means to be and feel alive.” ~ Sharon Salzberg

“I sometimes try to imagine what would have happened if we’d known the bonobo first and the chimpanzee only later—or not at all. The discussion about human evolution might not revolve as much around violence, warfare and male dominance, but rather around sexuality, empathy, caring and cooperation. What a different intellectual landscape we would occupy!” ~ Frans de Waal

“I hope you will have a wonderful year, that you’ll dream dangerously and outrageously, that you’ll make something that didn’t exist before you made it, that you will be loved and that you will be liked, and that you will have people to love and to like in return. And, most importantly (because I think there should be more kindness and more wisdom in the world right now), that you will, when you need to be, be wise, and that you will always be kind.” ~ Neil Gaiman

Imagine, 3 AM, not yet truly awake, and you come to realize that you have committed a sin. That’s what happened to me. And what sin was that? I made the coffee too weak! So, to address the tragedy I tossed what was left, then made a fresh pot, and made it the right way. The day could only go uphill from there. If I myself were weak it would still be better than the coffee being weak. All better now. Moving forward. I had a homeless guy come up to my cash register at work yesterday. I’ve dealt with him before. He has a little portable radio that must be at least 40 years old. It looks like one of those tinny old transistor radios from the 60s. This is the third time I have seen him. Each time I sold him AAA batteries and installed them for him. He seems a little crazed but he’s a nice enough guy. I get the impression that he craves some caring support. The first time I saw him he explained that the radio was the most precious thing in his life. Take note here, he was spending money on batteries, not cheap sherry. I felt good about his purchase for two reasons. One was that I helped him, by installing the batteries, noting that he was in a state of deep feelings of helplessness and hopelessness. The second reason was that I helped him maintain his connection to music. I can’t stress enough how much that means. If ya ain’t got music in life you are just barely living. Sure there is music everywhere, in everything, but most people can’t open enough to connect with that level of reality – although, I admit, it is conscious awareness that is lacking there, because we are all subject to that silent music at all times. I highly recommend the movie “August Rush” if you want to pursue learning what the heck I am talking about here. The movie title in that last sentence is underlined because it is a link to click on if you so choose. That link takes you to the intro page for the movie on Netflix, which seems to be fast become ubiquitous in the number of people who subscribe. Anyway . . . no, wait . . . the film is a tearjerker, of both tears of sorrow and tears of joy. For me the joy prevailed. So, back to the homeless guy. Yesterday, as he was paying for his purchase, he asked me, “Do you ever have bad days?”. He was wearing mirror shades so I was barred from seeing his eyes. However, I sensed that he was drunk, but not heavily so. He had not been drunk the other two times I helped him. He didn’t stink of booze, nor of anything else for that matter. I smiled at him and replied, “Of course I do, once in a while”. He kinda fidgeted as he asked, “Well, what do you do then?”. “I put on my brave face and tough it out”. He left the store immediately, without a word. As I was heading to my car at lunch time I saw him trying to cross the highway. He was gesticulating wildly and shouting pretty much at the whole damned world. I opened my car door and sat down, satisfied. I had done all I could. The story of this man seems somehow poignant to me, and that is why I shared it here. I’ve heard people say that they never give cash to homeless guys because they are just going to buy booze with the it. I don’t concur. I can’t. My giving money to a homeless person is a choice. What they do with it is up to them. You just do not know that they will buy booze. It could be that they will buy batteries. Go figure, right? Nuff said. It’s time to prep for the workday. Bueno bye.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

The Dance Between Fact and Fiction

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“If you will practice being fictional for a while, you will understand that fictional characters are sometimes more real than people with bodies and heartbeats.” ~ Richard Bach

“If you were trapped in an impossible situation, in an unpleasant place, with people who meant you ill, and someone offered you a temporary escape, why wouldn’t you take it? And escapist fiction is just that: fiction that opens a door, shows the sunlight outside, gives you a place to go where you are in control, are with people you want to be with(and books are real places, make no mistake about that); and more importantly, during your escape, books can also give you knowledge about the world and your predicament, give you weapons, give you armour: real things you can take back into your prison. Skills and knowledge and tools you can use to escape for real.” ~ Neil Gaiman

There are coyotes afoot in the darkness. They never let loose into full howls, but the songs they did sing were a balm for this weary soul. Sigh. I’ve been finding life to be tough and confusing lately. If that means I have forsaken the positive thinking, Law of Attraction path, so be it. It’s a part of the story, silly. What’s not to understand? Anyway. As I was saying, or not saying. I had a great conversation with a friend recently, a fellow writer. In part we drifted into examining the difference between fact and fiction. My first and as of yet only book is about the NDE I had back in ’84. My friend has read the book. We agreed that because of the nature of the near death experience it’s hard to get a fix on just how factual the story is to begin with. I mean, do you really believe that stuff?! I wrestled with this issue even before I began writing the rough draft. This was back when I was still feeling daunted by the very task of putting something so seemingly ethereal into words in the first place. To say it ain’t easy is laughably correct. One thing that really got my writer’s brain all in a good-tizzy was the news of a guy by name of James Frey, and how he got busted for making up shit in his memoir A Million Little Pieces, and friggin Oprah her own self raked him over the coals for doing so, in front of her loyal fans, on national TV. Poor fella. The controversy turned out to be an inspiration, of sorts, for me. I wanted my book about my experience to read as a good novel would, and I did my best to appeal to a reader’s sense of cinema. Some of the stranger parts of the story eventually came to challenge me to keep it real when I actually felt the strangeness was “realer than real”, a term I picked up from a scientist from Wales, UK, by the name of Dr. Penny Sartori (PhD in Near Death Studies), whom also has read my book, and she was impressed enough to include a snippet about me in her international best seller The Wisdom of Near Death Experiences. Yeh, we exchanged books over a period of time. It is something I am proud of. Soooo . . . During the conversation I paused to think about what, in the book, I wrote that did stretch close to being fiction. A scene where I met a Lakota Sioux man at a bus terminal in Dateland, Arizona, during a transcontinental bus trip, was the closest I came to fictionalizing something. The world was looking pretty magical at the time, likely due to my having been only seven weeks off of a seriously respectable head injury. There was a lot of intuition at play back then, as well as imaginal perception. My conversation with the man . . . well, I had to dramatize it and construct a dialog that still, to this very day, seems otherworldly, and realer than real. But the dialog rang true to some notes I had written down at the time. It was simply hard to put into words. I did my best. I wanted it to portray the meeting as purely as possible. The other part of the book that may seem to be fictionalized is when the love of my life, Lori Mellon, lay on death watch, for 35 days, in the ICU at Jackson Memorial Trauma Center, in Miami. If anything I toned it down. It needed no embellishment. Still friggin chokes me up to this day. No, she didn’t die then, not until a few years later. So, where does this all leave me this morning? I’m running out of writing time, because this is a workday for me. I must shower before taking my fantasies and magical thinking off into the world. Somehow I am reminded of the Paul Simon song “Hearts and Bones”. You can talk about the thump-thump heart muscle, but me thinks Master Simon was talking about the subjective heart. Even a die-hard materialist might have a hard time denying the reality of the latter. In closing I must say that the line between fiction and real life blurs on and off to its own rhythms, in the dance between fact and fiction. My book is creative non-fiction. Ummm, it’s kind of like falling in love. It ain’t real ’til it is.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

Perseverance and Cynicism

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“Really good fiction could have as dark a worldview as it wished, but it’d find a way both to depict this world and to illuminate the possibilities for being alive and human in it.” ~ David Foster Wallace

“You can’t study the darkness by flooding it with light.”  Edward Abbey

“They leave Omelas, they walk ahead into the darkness, and they do not come back. The place they go towards is a place even less imaginable to most of us than the city of happiness. I cannot describe it at all. It is possible that it does not exist. But they seem to know where they are going, the ones who walk away from Omelas.”  ~ Ursula K. Le Guin

There I was, in a mild fit of ego stuff, contemplating whether or not I am actually as cynical as I think I am. No answer was needed. This I knew. I decided to step outside for a spell and in doing so discovered it was snowing, fine and soft. It has since stopped, and the blanket of its efforts has made all well. What tipped off my self-inquiry as to the level of my cynicism was some brief stanzas  –  Haiku maybe  –  of poetry that someone I know shared on Facebook. Seems I was turning my nose up while reading them. I’ve have never been formally trained in how to approach and comprehend, appreciate and delve into poetry. It has always left me feeling blank. It’s not my thing. But boy howdy do I ever love good prose! I still squirm a tad if it gets too ‘artsy’ but I will forgive the writer as long as they do not slather the artsy stuff all over words and phrases and paragraphs. I’m reminded of the writings of David Foster Wallace. It all seems extremely well-crafted to me, and it doesn’t feel like he is aiming at art at all. And yet I know in my heart that poetry aims at revealing truths about our perceptions and feelings about and of the world, those which are not so easily accessed through prose. Or . . . . or is it? You tell me. Wallace’s stated aim was to let the reader perceive what it feels like to be “fucking human”. That ain’t all bad. I am not sure I have any actual aim in my writing, but in rereading passages from my first and only book I sense that I have accomplished in places exactly what it feels like to be fucking human. Art is in the eye of the beholder, they say. I fully agree. My opinion of my own prose serves the purpose of keeping myself honest; I use my opinion as a tool. My aim is to tell a story.


The cat is all fed and medicated. I just came back in from a great though subtle sunset view. It is still snowing, scantly. Today’s agenda begins with laundry. Nice. Pick up my paycheck. Nice. Then lunch with a lovely young woman is one of my cat comrades from our time at the animal shelter. Her treat. As I have said before, the shelter forged bonds, long lasting stuff. My friend is a writer; another bond. Yeh, I’ll keep track of the news. I’m not so cynical as to remove myself from the flow of bad news from the White House. This republic is in peril. This is history. I wanna keep up with it. It is not driving me crazy. I can persevere.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

The Omelette Over Yonder

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“The next suitable person you’re in light conversation with, you stop suddenly in the middle of the conversation and look at the person closely and say, “What’s wrong?” You say it in a concerned way. He’ll say, “What do you mean?” You say, “Something’s wrong. I can tell. What is it?” And he’ll look stunned and say, “How did you know?” He doesn’t realize something’s always wrong, with everybody. Often more than one thing. He doesn’t know everybody’s always going around all the time with something wrong and believing they’re exerting great willpower and control to keep other people, for whom they think nothing’s ever wrong, from seeing it.” ~ David Foster Wallace

“You can be shaped, or you can be broken. There is not much in between. Try to learn. Be coachable. Try to learn from everybody, especially those who fail. This is hard. … How promising you are as a Student of the Game is a function of what you can pay attention to without running away.” ~ David Foster Wallace

I just stopped in to see what condition my condition is in. No really, I came to feed and medicate the cat and to set the chickens free from the coop. Still housesitting, until evening, after which I will return to the company of my lovely cat, who is the focus of my life. It’s not despair. I really do like my cat’s company. Anyway, I will spend the day on the couch at the house I am watching. Catch up on news analysis, and maybe find something else to watch on TV when I get enough of the news. Granted, I feel increasing alarm at what is going on in this country. I ain’t gonna go all Trump-oid on y’all and say that it is a disgrace. Friggin insidious buffoon. I ain’t gonna go all Zen on y’all and say it is what it is. So is the resistance. So is the the high-level support for the abuse of women. That last one really rots my socks, and I suspect that them troglodytes really do think it’s okay. It’s not okay, k? Wow, that was an awkward sentence. I just wanted to give it a shot. I failed. Such is experimentation. No one can be right all of the time. Soooo . . . that said . . . the cat has finished her breakfast, so I must poke some insulin under her hide, sub-cuetaneously speaking, and head back to make a nice green chile cheese omelette. I got me no kitchen here at my place, so I’m a gonna take smiling advantage of the one over yonder. On a last note – hey, how about the fresh snow!

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

That Good Ol’ Tectonic Emotional Shift

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“People think dreams aren’t real just because they aren’t made of matter, of particles. Dreams are real. But they are made of viewpoints, of images, of memories and puns and lost hopes.”  ~ Neil Gaiman

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”  ~  H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

 “Yes: I am a dreamer. For a dreamer is one who can only find his way by moonlight, and his punishment is that he sees the dawn before the rest of the world.” ~ Oscar Wilde

Brief post here, just to say hello. Housesitting gig, last night and tonight. It’s refreshing to sleep somewhere else for a change. And the cat seems to be fine with me being out of her hair, fur, whatever, for a short while. Yesterday was a rigorous lesson in pain management. I awoke with tremendous pain in the kink in my spine, which sets right between my shoulder blades. Friggin big ouch! This level of pain set a precedent. A friend gave me some 800mg ibuprofen, and some low-grade muscle relaxers. I made it through the workday. Better today. It felt to be some kind of karmic reminder of I don’t know what. My mind is . . . well, actually, feelings . . . somethings up, some kind of tectonic emotional shift. We’ll see. This is all new.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

 

Fever Dreams and Hippies

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“The essential feature in quantum interconnectedness is that the whole universe is enfolded in everything, and that each thing is enfolded in the whole.” ~ David Bohm

“Pribram has given evidence backing up his suggestion that memories are generally recorded all over the brain in such a way that information concerning a given object or quality is not stored in a particular cell or localized part of the brain but rather that all the information is enfolded over the whole.” ~ David Bohm

“If you try to view yourself through the lenses that others offer you, all you will see are distortions; your own light and beauty will become blurred, awkward, and ugly. Your sense of inner beauty has to remain a very private thing.” ~ John O’Donohue

Sometimes I feel a rumble and hum, like there is “a disturbance in the Force”. To this very day I am fascinated and grateful for getting the opportunity to witness Star Wars become an element of mythos in its relationship to the collective psyche of this country. It’s archetypal stuff. Harry Potter is that way, for me, anyway. Can you see the fake president (he who shall not be named) as Voldemort, or Darth Vader? It doesn’t take a stretch, now does it? Star Wars first came to my attention back in the mid-70s. The place was Seattle; my date that night was my ex-wife. Go figure, right? Yes, I still love her, and I would love to see her again. How about some fish and chips at the Alley, or at Five Star? My treat. Anyway . . . we were at the movie theater to watch “Silver Streak”, with Jill Clayburgh and Gene Wilder. The very first Star Wars trailer preceded the film. And I was like “Wow! Holy shit!”. It was that exciting for me, as a longtime science fiction fan. My wife was into science fiction as well. I don’t know what happened. If I had to articulate a reason for the relationship failing I would have to say that it was always, from day one, me living in her world. Were I to be cynical, I would say that I was pretty much furniture. The relationship went from a fling to what I thought was a committed relationship during a mysteriously brief bout of rheumatic fever. I ran a fever of 104º for days, all the while enduring the effects of my first encounter with penicillin. You guessed it – allergy. And the real kicker, if you are into hippie soap operas, was that I recovered while laying on the living room couch, in a house she shared with her mother, father-in-law, husband, and two year old daughter. Am I making myself clear yet? Oh . . . I had only recently lost my virginity. After a couple of days on that couch, in severe pain and delirious from the fever, she oddly enough asked me, “Why don’t you take a shower? It’s been days”. Ummmm . . . I could barely move enough to choke down some soup or fenugreek tea. “Can you help me to the shower?”, I croaked. That, she did, but it took my asking first. Hey, ya gotta advocate for yourself, right? The shower grounded me some, and after returning to the couch I got a lot of reading done, in between hallucinations. There was no TV in that hippie household. I lost a little over 20 pounds in ten days. My weird little Cuban doctor, Dr. Franco, expressed wonder as to my not having developed kidney or heart damage; not to mention that rheumatic fever generally hits earlier in life, and that it usually lasts for months. Ten days? Definitely anomalous. So, why am I on about all that, this morning? Heck if I know. The emotional scars run deep, all crusty and stuff. Poor me, right? But I am in pretty much of a Buddhist mood this morning. There is some trembling going on, but that’s alright. Or maybe it is more of a Taoist mood, which wouldn’t really be a mood at all. The Tao is silent, yet says it all. Geez, I had better go take a shower and get ready for my workday.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.