Thursday, February 28, 2008

When I went to see Ken Kesey talk in 1993, I never thought that I would find out years later that a friend of mi8ne from years before was sitting in the same room. We listened to Ken Kesey read from the book Sailor Song, and gave an exciting talk. He then cliosed out the talk, the reading, and walked the whole group of listenerts across the San Jose State campus.

He cr54ossed the campus while talking to all around him, that followed hi8m inn a lively procession, and landed in a more open venue, where ghe sat down, and started signi9ng books. I had a freshly purchased copy of Sailor Song, and he signed it. I wass still thinking about his appearance, this older man with tri colored bowling shoes, and a bag over his shoulder shaped like a swordfish.

Of course, I think how if only for a minute, I have gotten to jmeet writers I have enjoyed. I am not much for hero worship, but it is wonderful to meet the people that created books I have enjoyed so much. Having reread about Allen Ginsberg's controversy in the courts, and how it almost led to publisher and poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti to criminal indictment, I am thrilled when I get to meet people who are parts of the histories I celebrate. In think it fun to remember these meetings when you discover thast these people are not defined by one set of work, that many of them continue to grow and change.

The thrill is to see that many of these people remain interesdting decades after their initial fame , or infamy has faded.

Back in the nineteen seventies, Noam Chomsky stated that once you set an idea to study, like a thesis in college, it is important to know that few truths are lasting, eternal. Asd such, he said, if you aere teaching your thesis thirty years after completing it, then you have not grown. The ideas I have about so much in life, I know will change. I know that my only lasting goal is to remain teachable, and hope I can keep excited about my life.

As for Kesey, he died many years too young. Still, I was in our grocery store, stocking Nancy's yogurt in our refgrigerator. I looked at the label,, and noticed that it said, 'thanks from the Kesey family' and discovered that this thriving organic dairy is from Eugene, Oregon, the home city of Ken Kesey's ranch. Wild.

Thank you for reading.

Monday, February 25, 2008

after talking to a lawyer friend.....

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

I am sitting in the parking lot of Safeway, pondering the bicycle ride home. I have read an article on the diminishing nature of the First Ammendment of the Constitution. I laugh. A friend sent me a lecture given by a law professor all about the fraility of our freedoms.
We have sat a long time thinking that our freedoms are a guarantee. It is important for me to note, that the lecture my friend sent me, was given by a law professor in 1988 right before his retirement. Having traveled to a coupole different countries in my short time onb this planet, one thing I am struck by is this: even if I am going to a place that is relatively safe, the fact remains is I come from a place where I have learned to accept my freedoms as God given. They are not.
I am a person who knows that I do not know the laws of anyplace I go , have no idea how to manage myself in the event of a crisis. I believe in the goodness of the world in which I live. I believe in the protection of my Creator, and I believe in the prudence, the simplicity I have adopted to make myself less of a target for trouble.
It wasd right here in Redding, California, when I was stopped on foot twice in one week by police. Both times I was beyond reproach, stayed unassuming, and then went on my way. When I told a friend of mine in the Philippines about the events, she said, "You did nothing wrong? Oh my God, you liver in a police state!" I cannot change the woerrld, but I can change myself. I find my gift comes from a great faith, and from an understanding of what I can do or not do to draw goodness or trouble my way.
In the weeks following the death of Bobby Fischer, I can only laugh in the almost snippy tone of the article when people spoke of his horrible anti-Semitism, and his outspoken comments on politics. He lived in Reykjavic, Iceland where he finished out his life. The people interviewed in the article said, "We do not necessarily like his opinions, but we believe in free speech. "
I do not know if I take any of this all that seriousluy. Maybe I will compile my thoughts on this in a while... In the meantime, I will get a copy of that article, and post it. I will write this for today, as I continue my experience of life here in the police state.... Sorry.... I was tickled by the reference...
Thank you for reading.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

I have received word my laptop is inoperable! I was told sadly that it has an old processor, and that the processor is overheating without cause! I know there is a cause for everything, but I cannot be burdened with trying to figure out why silicone circuits shoulfd fail me in this juncture.

I am still disturbed by the article I read suggesting that live stem cells get passed from mo9ther to child in utero, and that likewise cells get passed child to mother.... The imoplicvations are not as staggering as knowing that decades later, we still have living aspects of our motjher in us growing, and living inside us. The DNA remains the same, and the battle persists... inside our own bodies!

Everything from immunity diseases to actual health benefits come from this. I am just wondering if that extra voice in the back of my head.... the nagging one, could be the result of this interuterine transfer...

My hope springs eternal. I have a line on a new computer. I am gratefulfor my mother's wise discernment. This was her actual action, not the passive act of her stem cells in my body. I am so happy to have peop[le who know how to shop more effectively than me.

Thank you for reading

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Fabulous Times!

(all the while I ponder how through this blog, a friend had found me, tjhat I have not seen since 1984!)

I just finished texting a friend. I have had a most exciting forty-eight hours. I had arrived at a coffee house to find my computer infected with a blue screen inspirting virus that says, "You are dead! Proceed no further!" Undaunted.... I took it to work.

I walked half an hour to work, and looked to find my bicycle had been stopl;en. The bolt that was installed was unscrewed by rotating my entire bike unitl the entitre bolt wasd liberated from the wall.

My bank account went into a surprize state of overdraft twice, and I thought, "This .... this is all okay."

One friend texted me from Indonesia to tell me God had a bike waiting for me. and in the hjours that followed she turned out to kno what she was talking about. One of my coworkers offered me his bike to use.

Another lady, a bus driver I met, had worked as a parole officer and says she couldf get me a bike. and as I arrived to work today, I was approached by a man I know from our parking lot, who said, "We have located your bike, and it will be here shortly."

I cannot questyion God's goodness. I know in my heart soon I will be able to get obnline with my own computer, and share with a more in depth account. But this will suffice for now.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

To My Closer Friends I Remember this One

Rule #62: Do not take yourself too seriously.

Thank you to all that read, all that think, all that comment, and all that shiver in disgust!

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Now Then... about the Buddha

When I was three years old, a man, named Sheldon Kopp, penned a marvelous book, called If You Meet The Buddha on the Road, Kill Him. The last title was not all my idea. I am not a violent man, and I guess some of my friends found the title a bit provocative. But I do want to explain.

When the book was written, it was based in no small part on the key idea that no truth that comes from outside yourself is real. I have had to truly look into my soul, and seek out some pieces of truth, especially in the light of the challenges some readers of this blog have posed to me. My own statements on knowing a man's motives forced me into a corner, after essentially saying that a man's motives cannot be known, and furthermore, are in most cases immaterial. I hope these philosophies do not keep me off any jury selections.

It is amazing to me that once a pewrson starts taking a stance that a man;s motives are not only unknowable, but insignificant, it can simply put you at odds with so many folk in the world. How can I say that I take so much of this seriously when I do not even look at most of it as real? I have been posting for two months about this petty breakup in my life, if for no other reason than that I felt denied the most basic, most simple of vindications. Sigh. That is pathetic. No wonder my roommate thinks I am a bitter man. Still, he does want me to move with him, and perhaps it is just so he does not have to have me on his floor anymore. But, in a room where he would not have to interact with me....

I believe that when I can transcend all this drama, my life would become more manageable. I see all these points in my life where I, or someone nearby me, wanted to make a point about someone, and had to base it on a speculation about a person;'s "obvious" motives. How often has my name been smeared by people with their concerns about the reasons behind my actions? This discussion would not burn a hole in my ass so bad if it were not for the fact that I have had to endure the most tedious discussions.

One man sat on the phone and pointlessly blew smoke up my ass over a slight he did me four years ago, and instead of telling me that his actions were wrong, and would never try to fuck me over again, he left me feeling slimy.

Causality merely means to me a pointless exercise in trying to make sense of a world with my own infinitely limited resources. If I walk a shoreline, I could never fully decide where to declare the shore. Every time, every footfall would land somewhere different, and never again could I say I hold the absolute knowledge of where the shore lies, neglectful of the constantly changing tides, the movement of the sands, my incomprehensably changing values as I roll my reliable measuring wheel.

When I want to solve a life problem, or I want to praise someone for their solution, I would be bound into a false declaration of truth. So, I stay out of the fray, and move onto a path of greater peace.

Where is this peace to be found? It is found where it has always been, in my breath. When I got panicked, lost, afraid, I was always reminded to breathe. Now I breathe, hopefully with a little more consciousness. Perhaps I can breathe in the hopes of finding that lasting peace where every drama plays out without my active involvement...

Thursday, February 7, 2008

If I Meet The Buddha on the Road, I Will Kill Him

It is a late night here in Redding, California. I am in my apartment, and I am pondering the suggestion, the offer of my roommate to move into a different apartment in the downtown area where we would be able to enjoy greater access to services, and a nicer, larger apartment. I hope he decides on this soon. I accepted this living arrangement with a sense of quiet uncertainty that made me want to be ready to bolt. Now, I am more settled, and ready to sit still, making more permanent arrangements more enticing.

When I moved into Redding, I thought I was sculpting a foundation to build a life with my girlfriend, who had expressed an interest in marrying me. It is quite a shock to find myself in this town, asking myself what I want from life here, when I have finally let go of this wholly destructive relationship. When I was sick enough to invest so much into a lover that shows no love, no respect for me, I am craving an appreciation for that old affirmation: that which does not kill me makes me stronger.

In the kitchen I can hear thee water bubbling in na quiet simmer, as I have milk and cocoa heating slowly with a couple spoonfuls of lecithin added in. The lecithin is a phospholipid, and has enormous benefits in reducing cholesterol, improving neurological function, and clearer thinking. When I am thirty-seven- and excited about my new efforts in building my retirement security- I have a chance to watch the roller coaster of my mind from an almost detached standpoint. It is fun to watch the dance I engage in, the periods of inspired, proactive, optimism, followed by familiar waves of conservative, self flagellating rants. When detached from the drama, I realize I am no longer slave to the games my conscious mind plays.

I told a woman at a coffee shop nearby (Breaking New Grounds, downtown Redding) that I wanted to craft an article on causality (causation). There are a few problems I have with this concept, and if I can organize my thoughts on this, I will make out my points on this in this blog. Causality has a lot to don with my frustration with life. David Hume wrote of a constant conjunction, a twist of the mind unavoidable emotionally where as two events happen in close enough proximity that it is impossible to dissociate one event from the other. As I was told, in this vein, anything can become the cause of anything.

I am not a Buddhist, and will not expound on anything I know as slightly as this, but I can speak heartily at my distaste for the question of cause. So often in the 1990’s up t this very day, I have fielded bizarre quetions about causality.

As an epileptic, I have been asked “What causes your seizures?” I have been asked about my limp, “what caused that?” and for as far back as I cn remember, many fol wanted m to dedclare that I know, I truly know what caused my hydrocephalus. As a man who has had his skull drilled in a few times, I learned that as long as my brain produces cerebro spinal fluid, I will be dependent on the shunt that drains my skull. Knowing tha supposed cause might make for good conversation, but as of this writing, I have continued in my quest to become more honest.

I have to ask what is honest about pretending I know something about what is at first cause over something, and as such will have my sculpture done in bronze, and hope none of my followers get killed by radical iconoclasts.

I present my thoughts of radical conservativism, and sit my post on the fence with passion and conviction. I await more news to share. In the meantime, I am pleased to have this bnlog, and beautiful people that come to share with me.

Thank you for reading.

Monday, February 4, 2008

another mess of words on a web page...

In this moment, I ask, and I ask again,

Can I write a poem in this time?

Can this moment find the synaptic explosions,

The cataclysms, the refracted dreams, chaotic emotions

And weave them into words, into verse, another vision

Another dream, and find sifted amidst the flurry of my

Brain’s desire to control, and my heart, craving the

Complete abandon made so enticing in childhood?

I have seen those claims made by myself. I have seen the

Claims of others, and feel the pull of their words

While edging into a moment of quiet reflection where the

Dishonesty becomes clear again and again…

The catholics did not create sins of omission,

The lies, the missing placement, the completion of disclosure

Left for the fertile minds of the hurt, the jealous,

Empty of spirit, a man told in is heart that he has no right to

Speculate when pages of dreams are lost, when

Holes in curtains belie a truth, , an anxious desire for closure

A closure which only the truth told simply, a contrite

Soul falters, and a prideful front protects.

There came a moment, a quiet passage of time,

When the contrite felt an urge, felt the pull to move forward

And in that moment arose one thought

One dream that in pulling back, no pain will be felt

No skin needs to break,

And no pride needs to crumble.

I know today, in my heart, I stand here

Faultless. Indeed, in moment, I too will

Have the chance to propel myself past all

This. I just need the assurance, the one indulgence.

Tell me this once that I did no wrong,

That just for today, I need admit nothing…

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Cold days in Redding , California

Here it is. I am sitting in Redding, and watching the unstopping rain. I feel the cold, and now I am wearing my new Bad Ass Coffee Company sweatshirt. I was thinking the sadnes I have over getting this fine hooded sweatshirt at such a great price. The store is closing its doors, and I am wearing their shirt.

I have been sitting here in a tshirt from Camiguin island and feeling my chest hairs stand up when the gusts of cold come in everytime someone opens the door. Now, I feel the wonderful softness of this shirt, and can remember this fine establishment for all the bog reading and writing I have done right here.

Coffee flows freely (though not free) and everyone is coming in to buy discount merchandise, while expressing sadness at the closure. Tomorrow is Superbowl Sunday, and no doubt this place wiull see many folk come in for the game, as well as to buy more merchandise, and some even speak of trying to keep Bad Ass in business. I will say a prayer for them. I know about those fat ladies singing, and i have not heard her so much as clear her throat.

Stay tuned...

Friday, February 1, 2008

Dreams We Can Really Build On

No man chooses evil because it is evil; he only mistakes it for happiness, the good he seeks. –Mary Wollstonecraft

For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
· 1 Timothy 6:10, KJV

And what will you do with the big, big, money? Have you not everything you need? If you need a motor-car, you pluck it from the trees. If you need pretty polly, you take it.
-Alex in A Clockwork Orange, screenplay by Stanley Kubrick

I am centering on a moment in time where the question of my righteousness would no longer cause me pain. How does a man sit in his own life, comfortable in his own skin, and satisfied for the life God gave him? How do I accept the hurts people cause in the pursuit of their own selfishness, and know that indeed it is time for me to pull my investments, cut my losses, and move on?

I remember in 2005, I had a conversation with a coworker, a stocker of dairy goods at Safeway supermarket, a man with over twenty years in the industry. He said to me, “Kid! What you have to understand is sometimes you have invested too much in a woman to walk away.” I now think that bad thinking, and I remember his other inspired thought, “You know what your problem is? You do not know how to manage women. You have to rotate them, and keep them fresh.” This is the thought that I remember from my days of long distance love.

Some paradigms have a cross-over utility. Some ideas pass from one world into another as an axiom with universal reach. When a dairy man works in a dairy cooler, and uses rules for stocking a dairy case with running his romance life, I know there is a problem. I watched the commercial of Carl’s Jr. that says “If it does not get all over the place, it does not belong in your face.” I think that is a marvelous slogan for hamburgers, but I would never use it as a way to pick my next date.

I now know I have to look into the world with my eyes on my truest ideals. I got lost in love, and became subject to manipulation and abuse. I do not listen to Air Supply for my romance life. I think losing oneself in love will force me to lose critical objectivity. I have already done this once. It is a losing proposition.

So, when I look at my life, I have to ask myself, do I love money. If the answer is no then I probably should steer clear of any person whose ideas about money are not in sync with mine. I believe in the development of a sane approach to future stability. I am pleased to say in the past four years, dating a money crazed woman has given me a clearer ideal of what I want for myself economically.

It is a shame I did not have more respect for who I was, and what I did. I think it amazing that I would live my life believing I was somehow lesser in God’s kingdom, because I was with a woman that insulted me, and encouraged others to do so. Shit. I know this post may seem a gratuitous purgation. You may feel like I am a bulimic love-sick animal, that I just puked all over you. I apologize for that.

She never acknowledged her behaviour of the past four years. When someone pushes you to change for your “betterment” know they will never see anything wrong in that. Never look for contrition, never look for apologies.

I already knew this. For I remember the day I was told two years ago, “Keith, I will not apologize to you. If I apologize it would just sound hollow and insincere.”

Thank you for reading.