Monday, March 21, 2011

2011.03.21 — A Message, by George Carlin

Today's blog is something quite different, in that I am transcribing an observation that George Carlin (or so it has been credited) made on the quality of contemporary society.
A Message, by George Carlin

The paradox of our time in history is that we have taller buildings but shorter tempers, wider Freeways, but narrower viewpoints. We spend more, but have less, we buy more, but enjoy less. We have bigger houses and smaller families, more conveniences, but less time. We have more degrees but less sense, more knowledge, but less judgment, more experts, yet more problems, more medicine, but less wellness.

We drink too much, smoke too much, spend too recklessly, laugh too little, drive too fast, get too angry, stay up too late, get up too tired, read too little, watch TV too much, and pray too seldom.

We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our values. We talk too much, love too seldom, and hate too often.

We've learned how to make a living, but not a life. We've added years to life not life to years. We've been all the w ay to the moon and back, but have trouble crossing the street to meet a new neighbor. We conquered outer space but not inner space. We've done larger things, but not better things.

We've cleaned up the air, but polluted the soul. We've conquered the atom, but not our prejudice. We write more, but learn less. We plan more, but accomplish less. We've learned to rush, but not to wait. We build more computers to hold more information, to produce more copies than ever, but we communicate less and less.

These are the times of fast foods and slow digestion, big men and small character, steep profits and shallow relationships. These are the days of two incomes but more divorce, fancier houses, but broken homes. These are days of quick trips, disposable diapers, throwaway morality, one night stands, overweight bodies, and pills that do everything from cheer, to quiet, to kill. It is a time when there is much in the showroom window and nothing in the stockroom. A time when the technology can bring this letter to you, and a time when you can choose either to share this insight, or to just hit delete...

Remember; spend some time with your loved ones, because they are not going to be around forever.

Remember, say a kind word to someone who looks up to you in awe, because that little person soon will grow up and leave your side.

Remember, to give a warm hug to the one next to you, because that is the only treasure you can give with your heart and it doesn't cost a cent.

Remember, to say, "I love you" to your partner and your loved ones, but most of all mean it. A kiss and an embrace will mend hurt when it comes from deep inside of you.

Remember to hold hands and cherish the moment for someday that person will not be there again.

Give time to love, give time to speak! And give time to share the precious thoughts in your mind.


Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.

If you don't send this to at least 8 people....Who cares?

           George Carlin

I have taken Carlin's final 'Who cares?' to infer that he is okay with me blogging his sharp, rather sad but accurate observation about how it is we — a societal we — are choosing to live a life mostly un-lived. And I would like to thank TK for bringing this to my attention.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Sunday, March 6, 2011

2011.03.06 — The leggy wine bit (NaSmaStoMo#3-6)

The leggy wine bit —
nay, twas a soft caress, a
silken-lipped kiss.

2011.03.06 — "Thoughts, Traveling at Night" by Du Fu

How about a Change of Pace?

Here's some poetry from Du Fu 
杜甫, who is amongst the greatest and most influential of Chinese poets. I was re-introduced to Du Fu recently from Goodreads contributor Herman. Du Fu is delightful!!

Thoughts, Traveling at Night

In delicate beach-grass, a slight breeze.
The boat’s mast teetering up into solitary
Night, plains open away beneath foundering stars.
A moon emerges and, the river vast, flows.

How will poems bring honor? My career
Lost to age and sickness, buffeted, adrift
On the wind — is there anything like it? All
Heaven and earth, and one lone sand-gull.
Translated by David Hinton (1988)
This particular translation I found amidst 35 others at a sub-page of the Center for Digital Discourse and Culture @ Virginia Tech, specifically at the Du Fu link found on the page called Bureau of Public Secrets: Appendix II: Passages from Recommended Works.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Friday, March 4, 2011

2011.03.04 — "Mary and Max" and a small fushigi*

Mary and Max
It's been a while since I've blogged a fushigi. And I'm not sure if this qualifies or not, but it is peculiar.

Earlier this week, at work, my friend and co-worker, NR, in one of his playful moments, drank some condensed milk. This brought from JG a 'N! You never cease to surprise me,' comment, and a great deal of laughter from all, especially after his retort that went something like 'That's to get my mouth ready for coffee. Doesn't everyone do that?'

This evening, after a roughish day — unexpected and v. boring work assignemt, car repair, and hot water failures in our condo — I turned on the TV and stumbled into the claymation film, Mary and Max, shortly after it had started. Throughout the excellent film Mary is drinking with a straw from un- or illegibly labeled cans. At the very end I learn that they were cans of condensed milk because the narrator comments that Max had drunk his last can of condensed milk.

Until this week I did not know it was possible to do such a thing. My quick web search found two references to this phenomenon.

Regarding Mary Daisy Dinkle:

Mary, despondent, finds Valium in a cabinet, stands on a table with a noose around her neck, a can of sweetened condensed milk (her favorite) in her right hand, and a handful of Valium in the left. (Cited at Movies, Drugs and Psychiatry.)
In Max Jerry Horovitz's letter to Mary Daisy Dinkle:
PPS. Thank you for the Cherry Ripe and I am glad you like chocolate as much as I do. I have never eaten sweetened condensed milk but I will try some this week.
(Cited in Quotedquotes's Blog.)
Oh! The film is excellent. I give it 4+ stars.

2011.03.04 — The work day ended (NaSmaStoMo#3-4)

The work day ended
with a cold water surpise
to welcome me home.