Thursday, May 21, 2009

When You're Intolerant You're Barely Tolerable

I have always been troubled
That seems to be my basic nature
My troubles seem to boil from within but really require an outside source of heat
I say heat not light because anger is rarely illuminatory

You can get me boiling by what you say about the state of the world
You can raise my temperature easily by proclaiming you don't care
You can control me, dial me up or down, by being beastly
I don't tolerate a selfish foolish feeble mind all that well

We use the word when describing paint jobs or dye jobs or carpeting
We say they do or don't tolerate this or that
Plants are said to be "shade and drought tolerant"
I guess that means they like to suffer

I don't
I don't survive just to survive
I survive to live
I'm intolerant

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Flying away

I think Michael is on the road. I think he's flown, and hope he lands safely and lets us know when he's arrived. A long journey. I wish him wings to carry him safely, I wish him an angel of love at his arrival. May he find joy and return to Impressions when he's arrived. I can't fill in for him. I haven't his energy.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Bitchin' and Moanin'

We all know what this sign is referring to, and we have ceased to be amazed by anything we find posted there. What can you do about it? You really want an honest answer? Read on.

First and foremost, you can do nothing about gas and diesel prices except make a choice, or a series of choices, to STAY OFF THE ROAD.. Gasoline and diesel (and the crude from which they came) are commodities bought and sold in a global market.

As such, whenever a load of fuel is bought or sold, a price is established by a bidder or broker, and the agreed-upon price becomes the baseline value of that quantity of that commodity for delivery at a given point in the future. Yes Virginia, there is a future, and oil brokers make or lose their fortunes (and those of the people they represent, buyers and sellers) on the basis of how well they can predict the future. Try doing THAT in a rollercoaster environment!

Buy today, you pay today's price, and that price is constantly in flux because the "price of oil" is not one price but a composite of many many transactions taking place simultaneously all over the world.

No single corporate entity or bigwig or faceless monster "controls" the price of oil. The most any single entity in this market system can do is to buy a commodity (or make a promise to) or sell it (or promise to), and in doing so he/she/it is in full-bore competition with other interested parties with oil to buy or sell, and that is pretty much that. Organized chaos.

Cartels are affiliations between interested parties that band together, either loosely or not, to attempt to maintain the interests of those other words, to try to ensure that they have stable markets for what they buy and sell. By "stable" we mean dependably predictable. Using the word "stable" in connection with a commodities market is oxymoronic. Stability is a relative term. And market volatility has both fact-based and emotional components to it, making "stability" a description of a wobbling spinning top hovering around on a tabletop, occasionally coming perilously close to flying off the edge. Yet the top is "stable" because it keeps spinning. If a market/top ceases spinning, it collapses. Cartels fear collapse more than anything in their world, and the bulk of their efforts go to preventing any such thing from happening, and "controlling" prices, even if that mythic dream were possible, would not "stabilize" the market system, it would destroy it.

This is what people don't get.

Anyway, discussion aside, I return to the initial question/answer, what do you do about it? Well, as the answer given above states, get off the road. You don't have to pay for what you don't buy. You don't have to buy what you don't use. You don't have to use what you can get by without.

So do some self-analysis and, this time, pay attention to what you discover. Did you drive a circuit doing shopping, for example, or did you dart from place to place all willy-nilly? You are a GASHOG. YOU, not the unfortunate vehicle toting you around. Did you have to turn around and go back the other way because you were in a hurry and forgot something? Shame! Gashog.

You might be a Gashog if you are perched atop a two-story vehicle gazing down on all of us below with all that superiority of yours, because, admit it! you don't need a Monster Truck to make a run for a pizza. Call and have the hotrod in the little car do it. You might be a Gashog if, GreenPeace treehugger you, you cruise around all over town attending protest meetings every other day to Organize when a couple phone calls would get the message across just as well. Your nifty new and trendy Prius might get good gas mileage but ask yourself the question they asked everybody in World War II...

"Is This Trip Really Necessary?"

Sunday, March 30, 2008

I'm cute and clever, and I can reason, too!

Charles Darwin, who attempted to explain how human intelligence developed, extended his theory of evolution to the human brain: Like the rest of our physiology, intelligence must have evolved from simpler organisms, since all animals face the same general challenges of life. They need to find mates, food, and a path through the woods, sea, or sky—tasks that Darwin argued require problem-solving and categorizing abilities.

Darwin went so far as to suggest that earthworms are cognitive beings because, based on his close observations, they have to make judgments about the kinds of leafy matter they use to block their tunnels. He hadn't expected to find thinking invertebrates and remarked that the hint of earthworm intelligence "has surprised me more than anything else in regard to worms."

To Darwin, the earthworm discovery demonstrated that degrees of intelligence could be found throughout the animal kingdom. But the Darwinian approach to animal intelligence was cast aside in the early 20th century, when researchers decided that field observations were simply "anecdotes," usually tainted by anthropomorphism. In an effort to be more rigorous, many embraced behaviorism, which regarded animals as little more than machines, and focused their studies on the laboratory white rat—since one "machine" would behave like any other.

But if animals are simply machines, how can the appearance of human intelligence be explained? Without Darwin's evolutionary perspective, the greater cognitive skills of people did not make sense biologically. Slowly the pendulum has swung away from the animal-as-machine model and back toward Darwin. A whole range of animal studies now suggest that the roots of cognition are deep, widespread, and highly malleable.

Just how easily new mental skills can evolve is perhaps best illustrated by dogs. Most owners talk to their dogs and expect them to understand. But this canine talent wasn't fully appreciated until a border collie named Rico appeared on a German TV game show in 2001. Rico knew the names of some 200 toys and acquired the names of new ones with ease.

Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig heard about Rico and arranged a meeting with him and his owners. That led to a scientific report revealing Rico's uncanny language ability: He could learn and remember words as quickly as a toddler. Other scientists had shown that two-year-old children—who acquire around ten new words a day—have an innate set of principles that guides this task. The ability is seen as one of the key building blocks in language acquisition. The Max Planck scientists suspect that the same principles guide Rico's word learning, and that the technique he uses for learning words is identical to that of humans.

To find more examples, the scientists read all the letters from hundreds of people claiming that their dogs had Rico's talent. In fact, only two—both border collies—had comparable skills. One of them—the researchers call her Betsy—has a vocabulary of more than 300 words.

This posting is an excerpt taken from a March 2008 article
and published by National Geographic Magazine.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Friday Funstuff

Friday's Feast

APPETIZER: What does the color dark green make you think of?
The color of the car that wrecked my first one.

SOUP: How many cousins do you have?
First cousins? Or third cousins twice removed on my Mother's side? Kidding aside, I have upwards of fifty first cousins. The family is Catholic. YOU do the math.

SALAD: On a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being highest, how honest are you?
I honestly refuse to answer on the grounds that Dick Cheney may be listening.

MAIN COURSE: Name something that is truly free.
My right to say anything I want so long as Dick Cheney isn't listening.

DESSERT: Using the letters in the word SPRING, write a sentence.
"Some pretty regular idiots need goalposts."

Friday Fill-Ins

1. Some relationships are meant to: embarrass us and distort reality.

2. Blood, Sweat and Tears is the last concert I saw; it was back in 1970.

3. Spring should be
anticipated, like any imaginary dream.

4. Oh no! Here comes Dick Cheney!

5. I've recently started trying to adopt penquins.

6. Hugs from all us fools up North.

7. And as for the weekend, polo has been canceled, so I guess I'll just sit home and blog my fool head off. Again. Like LAST weekend. And the one before that.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Celebrity opinions: Why Did the Chicken Cross the Road?

DR. PHIL: The problem we have here is that this chicken won't realize that he must first deal with the problem on this side of the road before he goes after the problems on the other side of the road. We need to help him realize you don't get anywhere crossing roads all willy-nilly.

OPRAH: Well, I can see that Mr. Chicken is having problems, which is why he wants to cross this road so bad. So I'm going to give him a brand new car so that he can just drive across the road and get on with his life. And then maybe push his new book, "The Road Not Crossed."

GEORGE W. BUSH:We shouldn't worry or really care why the chicken crossed the road. We just need to know if the chicken is on OUR side of the road, or not. This chicken is either for us or against us. There is no middle ground here!

A little encouragement to everyone...

Bloggers, feel no guilt. You pass on what needs to be seen, said, and read, and perform a valuable service. Oh that we all had the time to be everywhere at once, but they haven't invented a machine yet that will do that. I once said that the only thing faster than the speed of light is imagination. I gave credit for this quote to a great writer at the time because people would swallow that easier than my saying it was me. Sometimes we have to fudge a bit and adjust ourselves to the biases and perceptions of this world. And we certainly have to recognize our physical limitations, but so long as we pursue what we know is right and true, I believe that God and his angels forgive.