Once there was a panel in an R Crumb comic of the early seventies which has remained with me when so much of that era hasn't. The story was a satire on the Cuckoo's Nest novel or movie, set in an asylum, and in the foreground of one sequence sits a nervous individual grasping his knees, shuddering, and proclaiming in some angst and woe, "I don't understand any of this."
The great Norman Zumwalt said of that forlorn critter, he is probably the most honest character in all literature.
A 14-year-old girl, with a habit of reading, looked up a reference she had seen online in a blog she had been following. Her older brother provided some of the translation. She wrote the story down and took it to school, to the horror and delight of her friends.
This is now a ghost ship.
My brother Reloj had an ambition when he was younger. He wanted to buy more than one bull elephant. He liked how they could trumpet like Tarzan, and so might be induced into at least four notes. That would be enough to play the lead in How High the Moon.
If at all possible, he would teach them to dance.
He would name them all Gerald.
I had a dream about Marrakesh...
I didn't know anything about Marrakesh. But it appeared to me anyway.
[I've been keeping a dreamlog for some years now. You can even add it to your RSS newsgathering service, so it will magically appear at your site anytime I update. It will aid in your own dreaming by adding the one incontestable prerequisite; it will put you to sleep. There are really no duller stories than someone else's dream...]
In the current Atlantic there is a travel section, and of course it features Morocco. It came through the mail some days after the dream. In the medina of Marrakesh, the old city, it is very frantic with the amateur tour guides, and yet it is very peaceful in the lovely seaside villages of Essaouira and Sidi Ifni. Morocco was a French protectorate, you know, but the Spanish and the Portugese occupied this coast.
There is even an island off Essaouira, called Mogador, a nineteenth century penal colony and current hatchery for gulls. I think maybe something comes into my dreams from elsewhere.
Once I read a very good story about schizophrenia called I Never Promised You A Rose Garden, in which a young lady carried an alien colony in her head. She was constantly visited from the land of Yr, way off in the sky somewhere, and her psychiatrist tried a very logical argument to convince her of her delusion.
She said, no one from Yr knows anymore than you do. That should have fixed it. It should fix all religion, in fact, for how can centuries of these frauds maintain credibility as the agency of a divine being if they know much less than the studious secular? In fact, the Dark Ages were merely the attempt by the stuporsticious to dam the floods of knowing. Worked for a time.
And so I lost patience with all the hoaxers who tell me they are in tune with divinity (which is only a sort of candy after all). There are past life travelers who have been everywhere, from the Garden of Eden to the Crucifiction to Alex the Great, and yet somehow they forgot to bring back any but the most superficial homilies, as if death bleaches out all sense and renders us all trite simpletons.
But what if dreams teach you something you didn't know? I wonder. I'm listening. There is in that dreamlog another which suggests a knowing not my own. Here is the relevant portion of it:
I am rushing through a moving train. I have to tell Reloj something I've just read.
It was in Schopenhauer. See, the way I understand it, is, you cannot substitute one string of longing and desire for another. I see it as a golf ball. You cut into the cover and you unwind one length of thread and stretch it out on the table. Then you take another and you substitute it.
Schopenhauer says you can't do that. Any impulse or drive is so deeply rooted there is no way to synthesize another for it. I go to tell Reloj that, rushing through the cars, out one door onto the platform and into the next.
Doubting Timus wrote:
> I had a dreammmm the other night...
> Here it is, the entry for 4 Oct 2005:
> I've read little to no Schopenhauer, and I'm wondering if by chance there is
> anything in this dream relating to sublimation but not quite which might
> resonate anywhere in Schopenhauer?
Yes, much;Is it possible we all have strange visitors in the night?
Arthur Schopenhauer (February 22, 1788 - September 21, 1860) was a
German philosopher. He is most famous for his work The World as Will
and Representation. He is commonly known for having espoused a sort of
philosophical pessimism that saw life as being essentially evil,
futile, and full of suffering.
However, upon closer inspection, in accordance with Eastern thought,
especially Buddhist, he saw salvation, deliverance, or escape from
suffering in aesthetic contemplation, sympathy for others, and ascetic
...Schopenhauer's starting point was Kant's division of the universe
into phenomenon and noumenon, claiming that the noumenon was the same
as that in us which we call Will. It is the inner content and the
driving force of the world. For Schopenhauer, human will had
ontological primacy over the intellect; in other words, desire is
understood to be prior to thought, and, in a parallel sense, "will" is
said to be prior to "being".
In solving/alleviating the fundamental problems of life, Schopenhauer
was rare among philosophers in considering philosophy and logic less
important (or "less effective") than art, certain types of charitable
practice ("loving kindness", in his terms), and certain forms of
religious discipline; Schopenhauer concluded that discursive thought
(such as philosophy and logic) could neither touch nor transcend the
nature of desire -- i.e., the will.
In The World as Will and Idea, Schopenhauer posited that humans living
in the realm of objects are living in the realm of desire, and thus are
eternally tormented by that desire (his idea of the role of desire in
life is similar to that of Vedanta-Hinduism and Buddhism, and
Schopenhauer draws attention to these similarities himself).
This is Reloj, my beloved younger and wiser brother, in his twenties, as am I, the photographer. Or else, it is me, in a photo taken by him. We walked in the same boots in them days. This is Sugarloaf, a little hill on the road which wraps around El Paso and heads north. We spend a Sunday and much effort climbing Sugarloaf. We were from the flatlands.
We're here because it's the end of Texas. Along Reloj's gaze is the desert behind Juarez, and the hills of Chihuahua in the distance. It's a dim picture, like memory.
If you go north, you're in New Mexico, and west is over the Rio Bravo, and south would mean that desolate country Travis staggered out of to open the film Paris, Texas. If we go east, we're eventually back in the flatlands.
Borders are funny that way. Once I attended a funeral. My granny had died. We were walking across the grounds of Willow Wild. We were painstakingly proper. I was in the front row, solemn, and one or two others strode abreast, and more somber folks followed.
We paused as the hearse and the funeral home limo passed on the gravel road that traced through the cemetery. There was a line of curbing, not a curb but a mark of ground, as for plots.
We stood there at that line. It did not mean anything to us. But none of us moved, for a count of five, or ten. We stood surreally in place, heads bowed. We knew we had to proceed, because the graveside services would begin shortly. It was all right we go forth. There was nothing holding us back. It's just an inconsequential line of concrete, probably no longer with any meaning whatsoever, and certainly not to us.
So why do we still only stand there? We stood there because no one took the first step. Each on the front rank awaited the other, and was confirmed in his inertia by the other's stasis. (Every moment is allegory for your early childhood development.) The second and later files could say, it was because the pious fools at our head held us up. But why did we only stand there? I have no idea.
It was something out of Camus.
We drove in the direction Reloj is gazing on another Sunday to see the greyhounds run. I never saw anything so quick through a quarter mile. We ventured bets, and were encouraged by our returns. Hey, maybe this will work for us, we said.
The racing forms for the next weekend come to the 7-11s in El Paso on Wednesdays, and we were there for ours. We intended much study this time. Just look what we'd done as mere amateurs.
First lesson we learned is: the form we'd followed at the track, we'd read it upside down. We thought the study of the races of the various contestants read top to bottom in chronology, like a book, but it was the other way around. Just wait until this weekend, we said.
Our income was, forty five a week from post-military Unemployment, mine. I had not worked since discharge, and didn't intend to anytime soon. Reloj was an excellent drummer, and he picked up ten bucks every Sunday in a jam session at Lynette's Lounge, a strip mall beer joint. Our rental was in a cinderblock apartment haven for seventy five a month. Those were the days.
We'd come out to El Paso because there was no hope at home, and because our older brother Joey lived out here. But Joey and especially his wife Rose were somehow not too glad to see a couple of impecunious freeloaders that season. At the time, we pretended not to understand.
We lost everything we had at the track that next Sunday, which wasn't much, but that cured us of greyhound racing.
That's the way it went that year. Eventually we left.
I see a youngster on a bike approach from the rear. There is an auto very properly turning right. To do that, he in keeping with the drivers manual merges with the bike lane. The kid on the bike comes up very fast, as if she wants to provoke a street theatre scene. She makes as if to pass to the right of the blinking turn indicator; which she of course cannot do; she slows, glowers, then flips off the driver moving on to her right.
You see, they play in their driveways, in the park, just doodling around, and then without any instruction, license, or monitoring they just move on off into traffic.
Don't you hate allegory? Here comes another.
Here comes such another. He is on the wrong side of the street. A lady in an auto is leaving the parking lot of the lumber yard and garden center. She is turning right, so gazing back to her left, from whence all traffic might be expected. The dud dude is shaking his head, frowning in disgust. She doesn't see him, you see. She doesn't see him, because he shouldn't be there, because he is on the wrong side of the street.
But he is licensed because he is on an eco-friendly vehicle, and she isn't, and he also is allowed a proper level of booster contempt because the driver of the auto is on her mobile phone all during the incident.
They play around, and then they move into traffic, without any instruction, training, or license.
Do you have a Myspace account? It's in the news.
Young women who too too recently were little girls are expressing themselves online as if they were still in their own private bedrooms with friends. Then they move into traffic, and out on that highway the drivers can be a gross, sickly sort of depraved.
MySpace.com is now owned by the rancid right media mogul Murdoch, who offers for our dereliction Faux News, the bunch of bush league bootlickers. He is pressing the online community for more profit. It's a particularly favorable proposition: the users develop the content, and Murdoch has all the data on every user to sell to advertisers.
You say there's an old guy hanging around your schoolyard? You should beware. It may be Murdoch ...
( or it may be...Collapse )
First note in my imaging of Coretta Scott King was on the old Dick Cavet show.
"I am really a singer," she said, gazing demurely at Dick Cavet.
I told that to Norman, and he laughed, said, I know just the tune. An old civil rights classic, "Abraham, Martin, and John."
"Has anybody seen my old friend Martin?
Can you tell me where he's gone?"
Next I heard she wouldn't allow the State tours into the King museum house until they paid her something. Then she tried to copyright the I Have A Dream speech. Then she and the family made an extremely lucrative deal with Warner or Time Warner for various books and projects, none of which I guess they ever produced.
Then she looked around, saw how the Kennedys lay down. Figured "conspiracy" was a good selling point. After all, Miss Jackie's early comment after losing her husband was, "He didn't even die for civil rights; it was just some silly little communist."
So the King family began talking up Conspiracy Theory Inc. James Earl Ray, he didn't do it. One of the sons kissing up to James Earl, the one who had killed his father, in his cell.
That's the way to build a brand.
It isn't absolutely certain venality was all there was to the marketing plan. Maybe stupidity played a hand. It usually does in Conspiracy Theory Inc.
Coretta Scott King
Handgrenades, Horseshoes, and Honors