AN UNCOMMON THOUGHT

"The real trick to life is not to be in the know, but to be in the mystery."
-Fred Alan Wolf

31 May 2020

Halt.


We must have law and order on our streets and in our communities, and it is the responsibility of the local and state leadership, in the first instance, to halt this violence.  The Department of Justice (including the FBI, Marshals, ATF, and DEA), and all of our 93 U.S. Attorneys across the country, will support these local efforts and take all action necessary to enforce federal law.

In that regard, it is a federal crime to cross state lines or to use interstate facilities to incite or participate in violent rioting.  We will enforce these laws.

30 May 2020

Paul Weller, "One Bright Star"

Peter Hook & The Light, "Shadowplay"

Chrissie Hynde, "Pack It Up"

Pack it up or throw it away
What I can't carry, bury ...



Your insipid record collection.

Excellent.

Excellent albums ...


Vice.


Certainly the most destructive vice that a person can have, more than pride, which is supposedly the number one of the cardinal sins, is self pity. Self pity is the worst possible emotion anyone can have. And the most destructive. It is, to slightly paraphrase what Wilde said about hatred, and I think actually hatred's a subset of self pity and not the other way around -- "It destroys everything around it, except itself."

Self pity will destroy relationships, it'll destroy anything that's good, it will fulfill all the prophecies it makes and leave only itself. And it's so simple to imagine that one is hard done by, and that things are unfair, and that one is underappreciated, and that if only one had had a chance at this, only one had had a chance at that, things would have gone better, you would be happier if only this, that one is unlucky. All those things. And some of them may well even be true. But, to pity oneself as a result of them is to do oneself an enormous disservice.

Stephen Fry

Last.


Violence is the incompetent’s last refuge.

Isaac Asimov

Thank you, Kurt.

Steady.


Remember tradition does not mean that you never do anything new, but that you will never fall below the standard of courage and conduct handed down to you. Then tradition, far from being handcuffs to cramp your action, will be a handrail to guide and steady you in rough places.

Sir William Slim

Exhibitionism.


Some of the most vocal critics of the way things are being done are people who have done nothing themselves, and whose only contributions to society are their complaints and moral exhibitionism.

Thomas Sowell

Paul Weller, "Andromeda"

Amplify.


Art and music shine a light of meaning on ordinary life, and through them we are able to confront the things that trouble us and to find consolation and peace in their presence.  Through the pursuit of such beauty we shape the world as a home, and in doing so we both amplify our joys and find consolation for our sorrows.

Sir Roger Scruton

Brisk.

Ignore.

Untravelled.

Dalì, Lago de Garda, 1949


All experience is an arch wherethrough
Gleams that untravelled world, whose margin fades
For ever and for ever when I move.

Alfred, Lord Tennyson, from "Ulysses"

Happy Birthday, Goodman


Benny Goodman was born on this date in 1909.

"Stealin' Apples" ...

29 May 2020

Ryan Bingham, "Conversation with the Devil"

WO-HOO!

HAPPY FRIDAY!

 

Happy Birthday, Chesterton


G.K. Chesterton was born on this date in 1874.

If any human acts may loosely be called causeless, they are the minor acts of a healthy man; whistling as he walks; slashing the grass with a stick; kicking his heels or rubbing his hands. It is the happy man who does the useless things; the sick man is not strong enough to be idle. It is exactly such careless and causeless actions that the madman could never understand; for the madman (like the determinist) generally sees too much cause in everything. The madman would read a conspiratorial significance into those empty activities. He would think that the lopping of the grass was an attack on private property. He would think that the kicking of the heels was a signal to an accomplice. If the madman could for an instant become careless, he would become sane. Every one who has had the misfortune to talk with people in the heart or on the edge of mental disorder, knows that their most sinister quality is a horrible clarity of detail; a connecting of one thing with another in a map more elaborate than a maze. If you argue with a madman, it is extremely probable that you will get the worst of it; for in many ways his mind moves all the quicker for not being delayed by the things that go with good judgment. He is not hampered by a sense of humour or by charity, or by the dumb certainties of experience. He is the more logical for losing certain sane affections. Indeed, the common phrase for insanity is in this respect a misleading one. The madman is not the man who has lost his reason. The madman is the man who has lost everything except his reason.

G.K. Chesterton, from Orthodoxy

Premiered.


Igor Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring premiered on this date in 1913.

Sir Simon Rattle conducts the London Symphony ...

Happy Birthday, Henry

Sully, Patrick Henry, 1815


Patrick Henry was born on this date in 1736.

They tell us, sir, that we are weak; unable to cope with so formidable an adversary. But when shall we be stronger? Will it be the next week, or the next year? Will it be when we are totally disarmed, and when a British guard shall be stationed in every house? Shall we gather strength by irresolution and inaction? Shall we acquire the means of effectual resistance by lying supinely on our backs and hugging the delusive phantom of hope, until our enemies shall have bound us hand and foot? Sir, we are not weak if we make a proper use of those means which the God of nature hath placed in our power.

Patrick Henry

Excellent.

An excellent album ...

Excellent.

An excellent book ...

28 May 2020

Accomodated.


BEFORE DARK

From the porch at dusk I watched
a kingfisher wild in flight
he could only have made for joy.

He came down the river, splashing
against the water’s dimming face
like a skipped rock, passing

on down out of sight. And still
I could hear the splashes
farther and farther away

as it grew darker. He came back
the same way, dusky as his shadow,
sudden beyond the willows.

The splashes went on out of hearing.
It was dark then. Somewhere
the night had accommodated him

—at the place he was headed for
or where, led by his delight,
he came.

Wendell Berry

Tears for Fears, "Change"

27 May 2020

Excellent.

An excellent movie ...

Guinness.

S.


As we live and as we are, Simplicity - with a capital "S" - is difficult to comprehend nowadays. We are no longer truly simple. We no longer live in simple terms or places. Life is a more complex struggle now. It is now valiant to be simple: a courageous thing to even want to be simple. It is a spiritual thing to comprehend what simplicity means.

Frank Lloyd Wright

Eddie Vedder, "Throw Your Arms Around Me"

Tempers.


If isolation tempers the strong, it is the stumbling-block of the uncertain.

Paul Cezanne

Attention.


I don't know which is worse—to have a bad teacher or no teacher at all. In any case, I believe the teacher's work should be largely negative. He can't put the gift into you, but if he finds it there, he can try to keep it from going in an obviously wrong direction. We can learn how not to write, but this is a discipline that does not simply concern writing itself but concerns the whole intellectual life. A mind cleared of false emotion and false sentiment and egocentricity is going to have at least those roadblocks removed from its path. If you don't think cheaply, then there at least won't be the quality of cheapness in your writing, even though you may not be able to write well. The teacher can try to weed out what is positively bad, and this should be the aim of the whole college. Any discipline can help your writing: logic, mathematics, theology, and of course and particularly drawing. Anything that helps you to see, anything that makes you look. The writer should never be ashamed of staring. There is nothing that doesn't require his attention.

Flannery O'Connor

Happy Birthday, Siouxsie


Siouxsie Sioux was born on this date in 1957.

With The Banshees ...

"Lands End"


"Spellbound"


"Painted Bird"

Happy Birthday, Finn


Neil Finn was born on this date in 1956.

"Paradise (Wherever You Are)" ...

Invest.


The longer I live the more beautiful life becomes. If you foolishly ignore beauty, you will soon find yourself without it. Your life will be impoverished. But if you invest in beauty, it will remain with you all the days of your life.

Frank Lloyd Wright

25 May 2020

Excellent.

An excellent album ...

Iggy Pop, "Isolation"

Like a fastball needs control ...

Jester.


Yesterday a clown held a door open for me. I thought it was a nice jester.

Ceremonial.


The modern habit of doing ceremonial things unceremoniously is no proof of humility; rather it proves the offender’s inability to forget himself in the rite, and his readiness to spoil for every one else the proper pleasure of ritual.

C.S. Lewis

Expert.

Jerry Reed, "Don't Think Twice, It's Alright"

With Chet Atkins ..



I love it when covers are better than the originals.

Largest.


Archeologist Dr. Brad Lepper gives a tour of the Newark Earthworks, which are the largest set of geometric earthworks found anywhere in the world. His presentation shows how the Hopewell people created and used the pre-historic mound structure and how some of it was preserved.

CONNECT

Rendezvous.

Ask the people of Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania, Czechoslovakia, Poland, Hungary all the others: East Germany, Bulgaria, Romania ask them what its like to live in a world where the Soviet Union is Number One. I don't want to live in that kind of world; and I don't think you do either. Now we learn that another high official of the State Department, Helmut Sonnenfeldt, whom Dr. Kissinger refers to as his Kissinger, has expressed the belief that, in effect, the captive nations should give up any claim of national sovereignty and simply become part of the Soviet Union. He says, their desire to break out of the Soviet straight jacket threatens us with World War III. In other words, slaves should accept their fate.

Well, I don't believe the people I've met in almost every State of this Union are ready to consign this, the last island of freedom, to the dust bin of history, along with the bones of dead civilizations of the past. Call it mysticism, it you will, but I believe God had a divine purpose in placing this land between the two great oceans to be found by those who had a special love of freedom and the courage to leave the countries of their birth. From our forefathers to our modern-day immigrants, we've come from every corner of the earth, from every race and every ethnic background, and we've become a new breed in the world. Were Americans and we have a rendezvous with destiny. We spread across this land, building farms and towns and cities, and we did it without any federal land planning program or urban renewal.

Indeed, we gave birth to an entirely new concept in mans relation to man. We created government as our servant, beholden to us and possessing no powers except those voluntarily granted to it by us. Now a self-anointed elite in our nations capital would have us believe we are incapable of guiding our own destiny. They practice government by mystery, telling us its too complex for our understanding. Believing this, they assume we might panic if we were to be told the truth about our problems.

Why should we become frightened? No people who have ever lived on this Earth have fought harder, paid a higher price for freedom, or done more to advance the dignity of man than the living Americans the Americans living in this land today. There isn't any problem we can't solve if government will give us the facts. Tell us what needs to be done. Then, get out of the way and let us have at it.

Ronald Reagan, March 31, 1976

Happy Birthday, Meine


Klaus Meine was born on this date in 1948.

Scorpions, "Lovedrive" ...

Vigil.


Vigil strange I kept on the field one night;
When you my son and my comrade dropt at my side that day,
One look I but gave which your dear eyes return'd with a look I shall never forget,
One touch of your hand to mine O boy, reach'd up as you lay on the ground,
Then onward I sped in the battle, the even-contested battle,
Till late in the night reliev'd to the place at last again I made my way,
Found you in death so cold dear comrade, found your body son of responding kisses, (never again on earth responding,)
Bared your face in the starlight, curious the scene, cool blew the moderate night-wind,
Long there and then in vigil I stood, dimly around me the battle-field spreading,
Vigil wondrous and vigil sweet there in the fragrant silent night,
But not a tear fell, not even a long-drawn sigh, long, long I gazed,
Then on the earth partially reclining sat by your side leaning my chin in my hands,
Passing sweet hours, immortal and mystic hours with you dearest comrade—not a tear, not a word,
Vigil of silence, love and death, vigil for you my son and my soldier,
As onward silently stars aloft, eastward new ones upward stole,
Vigil final for you brave boy, (I could not save you, swift was your death,
I faithfully loved you and cared for you living, I think we shall surely meet again,)
Till at latest lingering of the night, indeed just as the dawn appear'd,
My comrade I wrapt in his blanket, envelop'd well his form,
Folded the blanket well, tucking it carefully over head and carefully under feet,
And there and then and bathed by the rising sun, my son in his grave, in his rude-dug grave I deposited,
Ending my vigil strange with that, vigil of night and battle-field dim,
Vigil for boy of responding kisses, (never again on earth responding,)
Vigil for comrade swiftly slain, vigil I never forget, how as day brighten'd,
I rose from the chill ground and folded my soldier well in his blanket,
And buried him where he fell.

Walt Whitman

Thank.


It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather we should thank God that such men lived.

General George S. Patton

Happy Birthday, Hall


Tom T. Hall was born on this date in 1937.

"I Love" ...

Happy Birthday, Weller.


Paul Weller was born on this date in 1958.

"Wild Wood" ...

Commemorate.


The United States and the freedom for which it stands, the freedom for which they died, must endure and prosper. Their lives remind us that freedom is not bought cheaply. It has a cost; it imposes a burden. And just as they whom we commemorate were willing to sacrifice, so too must we—in a less final, less heroic way—be willing to give of ourselves ...

I can't claim to know the words of all the national anthems in the world, but I don't know of any other that ends with a question and a challenge as ours does: Does that flag still wave o'er the land of the free and the home of the brave? That is what we must all ask.

President Ronald Reagan, Arlington National Cemetery, May 31, 1982

Happy Birthday, Emerson


Ralph Waldo Emerson was born on this date in 1803.

It is easy in the world to live after the world's opinion; it is easy in solitude to live after our own; but the great man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude.

Ralph Waldo Emerson