Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Politically incorrect?

Should we always worry we will not be loved if we say what we feel?  Have you ever said or written something which you mean in general but do not mean specifically when it comes to relatives or friends?  You say it, then immediately think, I wish I could take that back.  I do not mean it when it applies to so and so.  Well, I do this all the time.
How are we to handle these awkward moments when what we believe is so far away from what someone whom we love believes?  On the other hand often the one we are concerned about has no such concern for our sensibilities.  It is a quandary isn't it?
We tie ourselves up in knots being politically correct and trying not to offend anyone, that often the one we offend by omission, is  OURSELVES.  I remember back in the day when Grandpa or Daddy would say exactly how they felt or what they believed and we would just keep our mouths shut or say he is just a stupid or ignorant old man, and just let it go. Age should have some privilege's and I am now 70.(or soon will be) I should be able to say what I think and mean what I say without being hated forever, or not being talked to.     
What is it about our time which is so incendiary and what makes it so difficult to love each other when we disagree?  We used to say let us agree to disagree.  Now we think, I shouldn't let them know I disagree or they will be angry. 
I say so what and damn the torpedoes.  In a world where bombs explode around civic events, ricin is sent to our president, and the f- bomb proliferates, I think an old lady can certainly express her opinion and not worry about offending those near and dear.
So I will speak out and say what I feel.  I have no desire to hurt anyone else but perhaps if enough people know there are those who are willing to speak up for the other side, no matter what the other side is, then perhaps we can be more accepting of each other in general.  Live and let live, agree to disagree, let all voices be heard and don't be afraid.  This is what the 1st amendment is all about.  It isn't just to allow a voice for porn or madmen.
The only people we should worry about hurting the feelings of, are those who cannot stand up for or defend themselves, like babies, children, and persons with different abilities.
PooBah has spoken!!!

Monday, April 29, 2013

To Exclude or Not, that is the ?

Do you have someone who is mean or nasty to you, or who ignores you and puts down things you suggest or ideas you have?  In my life I have had several people like this.   It is my policy to keep your friends close and your enemies closer.  Butter will not melt in my mouth when facing an enemy.  I am soooo  nice.  Mama used to tell me the worst thing you can do to someone who does not like you, is to greet her warmly in public.  Thus you force her to cut you or be nasty in front of others.   When I follow this policy I elicit one of the following reactions.  Sometimes the person will say "Oh! hello", with a puzzled expression on her face.  Sometimes she will pretend she doesn't hear me and then I get in her face and say hi again.  This time she will say hello, sometimes with a bit of irritation.  The third and most usual reaction is she will say "Hello", back with some degree of warmth.  She will then follow up with a comment like "isn't it a lovely day", etc. and we will be in a conversation. 
By taking this kind of action with difficult persons I have found it has cost me nothing to be nice.  The other person is forced to show her colors, and she usually doesn't really dare to do so in public. Finally, I may find I have been wrong.  I have given the other person a chance to be nice and sometimes she just is nice.  I may have mistaken her previous behavior for my own insecurities. The criticisms she made or the attitudes I attributed to her may have revealed more about me than they did about her.
I have to constantly examine my assumptions.  They are so easy to make and can be so destructive to relationships.  They say people make up their minds about others in the first 20 seconds of meeting or seeing them.  I know I am very quick to judge.  I quickly pick up of superficial clues, but I try real hard to not be overly influenced by them.  I have learned how mistaken I have been in the past and I know people are often mistaken about me. 
I am often puzzled about why people just don't seem to like me.  I remember walking into the cafeteria as a kid and heading immediately to the safe zone of one or two of my friends.  I still did this at work and other areas of my life.  It always seems there are circles of people I am never invited into, and if I were to inadvertently crash one of these circles, I would be greeted with condescending looks or completely ignored.  I have gotten on elevators with groups of these people and deliberately pushed another floor so I wouldn't have to stay and be uncomfortable.  I have tried to avoid certain circles at business parties where I know I would feel inadequate or unwelcome.  I sometimes would walk into such a group anyway, to see if I had misjudged them.  Guess what?  I hadn't.  I was made to feel as unwelcome as a sardine in a shrimp cocktail. 
Even now, in Church, which should always feel like a safe place, I am forced to confront these same unwanted feelings.  It is even more subtle and insidious now as everyone is supposed to play nice.  I have formed many real friendships in Church, and I shouldn't complain, but this goes back so many years and still continues, and I know it is not just me.
So many people are left out or ignored because they are too loud, to meek, complain too much, don't dress right, dress too fancy,  talk too much, don't talk enough, etc. etc. etc.  I always have to examine my own complicity in this judgemental process.  One must constantly ask WWJD.  Rich or poor, saint or sinner, healthy or diseased, all were welcome with our Lord.  How can I stand myself if I continue to be so exclusive.  So I keep trying, and trying not to bother with those who exclude me.  It is really their problem, not mine.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

I'm Back, but I am not smoking........

I decided to come back to write again after a little lapse in thought.  I don't know if you feel this way but sometimes it just don't feel worth it.  Anything.  I feel like hiding in bed with the covers over my head.  But then it becomes difficult for me to breath and I already have too much of that.
The breath of life.  How I used to take it for granted.  At least 20 times a day I would fill my lungs with smoke I inhaled from a fragrant little tube of tobacco.  Aw, how I loved the smell of tobacco. Both in the scent of a freshly opened pack of cigarettes and in the air when the tobacco was burning.  The smell seems to annoy so many people.  I still love it and follow, like a bloodhound with my nose to the ground, to a place where smokers just walked. In my view of heaven there will be endless packs of cigarettes and endless tins of pie and you can take as much as you desire of either without being harmed in any way. 
Smoking was the worst curse and greatest joy of my physical being.  I tell people I was inhaling in the womb as my dad smoked around me from conception. I grew up with smoke filled rooms and overflowing ash trays.  My earliest memories included the sharp acrid scent of burning tobacco.  Dad was a  indiscriminate smoker.  He smoked cigarettes, cigars, and pipes and at times rolled his own cigarettes.   He smoked in bed, in the car, in the toilet, in the woods, in fact smokes were his constant companion.  They became mine as well. 
My Mom had asked me not to smoke until I graduated from High School.  The day I graduated, still in my graduation gown, I made my parents stop on the way home, and I bought my first carton of Marlboros.  Mother was aghast but I had kept my promise.  I remember sitting on a stool in a diner  with my girlfriend beside me; and almost falling off the stool because I was so dizzy with the smoke.  I persevered however and soon could smoke with the best of them.  Quickly I graduated to a pack a day, and from there was no stopping me. 
I smoked for 50 years and I know I would most likely still be smoking were it not for prayers being answered.  I had been trying to stop smoking from the mid 1970s.  I really tried everything.  I went to hypnosis twice.  I had acupuncture and wore a staple in my ear.  Every wild and crazy technique which was promoted, I tried.  I had rubber bands around my wrist and snapped myself each time I wanted a cigarette.  I attended smoke ending sessions and tried gum, patches and even nicotine inhalers.  I got myself from 3 packs a day to one using patches. Patches were actually my technique of choice because of the constant source of nicotine.  I actually did stop smoking for 8 months in 1996/97 but began again when I worked in the telephone center of Amex.  The stress was too much for me and every time my friends went on a smoke break I did too. 
I was finally able to quit in January, 2012 and I know it took Divine intervention.   By this time I had advanced COPD.  Oddly enough my breathing has gotten worse after quitting.  Go figure.
The reason I am sharing all this is because I consider my journey with addiction has helped me to understand and have empathy with others who are addicted.  That mindset, which forces one to continue with self-destructive behavior, despite having intelligence, spouses, friends, laws, doctors, ministers and priests, rehab programs, and all the best information and tools, is a mindset which one can only have sympathy and a certain grudging respect.
There, but for the grace of God, go I.  I have been there and done that.  Why do I say grudging respect.  Because despite all the reasons not to do something, and the consequences one must face, there is something in the human spirit which defies all the odds and discards all the best reasoning and proceeds in spite of one's own self interest. The reason we got kicked out of the Garden of Eden is this. It is my choice.  This is true will power.  I will, no matter what you say or do. I will do this thing which will destroy me.  What we need to get a handle on, is I will not.  I believe for this we need a truth stronger than our own being.  Divine Will, be done, not our own pathetic human will.
Someday, perhaps in my home in the afterlife, I will smoke again, with no consequence or regret,(or not,) we will see what the Heavens have to offer.
P.S.  If you cannot stand run on sentences, do not come here.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Why PooBah?

As I was logging onto my blog to do a new post when Facebook informed me the site might be unsafe.  I had to choose between spam or ignore to move forward.  I began to wonder, why unsafe?  Is it my thoughts and ideas or my name Great PooBah? 
I chose the name PooBah because we put on the Mikado in highschool and I just loved Gilbert and Sullivan productions.  So therefore:
Grand Poobah is a term derived from the name of the haughty character Pooh-Bah in Gilbert and Sullivan's The Mikado (1885).[1] In this comic opera, Pooh-Bah holds numerous exalted offices, including "First Lord of the Treasury, Lord Chief Justice, Commander-in-Chief, Lord High Admiral... Archbishop of Titipu, and Lord Mayor" and Lord High Everything Else. The name has come to be used as a mocking title for someone self-important or high-ranking and who either exhibits an inflated self-regard or who has limited authority while taking impressive titles.
I feel the meaning of this title fits my character and I do not plan on changing it.  So please proceed at your own risk as I am now deemed unsafe.  Who knew?

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Too Sleepy going back to sleep

Did you ever get so sleepy you could fall asleep typing.  This is me now, bye!!!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Price of Meds

Why oh why are my med costs so high?  Oh what is my government doing?
With seniors so many and poor folks galoor, who is it we needs be pursuing.
I'm sick of the talk of development costs, and the safety with which we dispense,
Whatever they're costs,  their profits are boss, and ad.time the most high expense.

I'm tired of rhyming and I'm just upset, the thought of the donut hole(Dough nut hole, get it?) looms for me and countless others of my countrymen, and few care about it, until they live it.   Other countries have the same research and development expenses( or are you naive enough to think the research is done here in this country?) All the largest pharmaceutical houses are overseas in Europe and Asia and the manufacturing of the drugs is done, where?
 I am tired of the bloviating and excuses.  If Canada can have lower costs for the same drugs, why can't we?  Don't even talk about Federal inspections  of drugs and facilities after the fiasco over the knee injection drugs manufactured in New England, and the sequester and budget cuts which will bring Federal inspections of drugs and food  to a basic halt. 
Oh., I am angry this morning and all my facts may not be straight but I don't care, neither are theirs. They feed the American people a pack of lies and excuses and we all kneel to the power of the lobbies.  When will we begin to stand up for ourselves?

Monday, April 22, 2013

I Pray on Earth Day

What does Earth Day mean to me and why do I pray for our little blue planet?  I admit it, I am a tree hugger.  Each time I see a tree taken down in my neighborhood, even if it wasn't looking too pretty anymore, I mourn.  I am not going into all the arguments about how the planet is rapidly changing due to the myriad effects of so called civilization. I'll leave all the reasoning to the scientific community and the bullshit in both directions to the politicians.
What concerns me is my empathy for the creator's various life forms.  Our planet is made up of infinitely diverse creatures.  In the water, on land and even in the very air we breathe,
I admit it I cannot kill even a spider or a cricket.  I trap them and place them outside.  I have less problem with ants, mosquitoes and black flies but only because they are attacking or harming my being or invading my personal spaces.  Everyone has a home they want to protect from invaders.  Even bees and crackles defend their little territory.
Nature, flora and fauna, is so innocent and so deserving of our love and protection.  Imagine a world with no dandelions with the puffy, round little heads which are blown in the wind to spread their seeds for the next generation?  We try so hard to destroy them when they invade out lawns.
Imagine a world with no baby seals or dolphin. or even tuna or sharks?  The incredible universe exhibited on our little planet alone, has provided for all our needs for untold generations.  When a species is no longer needed it either dies out or evolves to a more useful life form. 
I saw a picture yesterday of a man holding baby radishes and carrots he had pulled from his garden.  My first thought was why couldn't he have waited until it was their time.  Call me a hopeless romantic, call me a hypocrite because I eat dead things every day.  You might say what is the difference between eating a potato or a chicken?  I would answer the chicken is a more advanced life form.  It can feel and sense it's environment in ways a potato or a carrot cannot.  I do know that plants scream or react when plucked and I am of the mindset that talking to plants helps them grow.  Vibrations of life are everywhere on the planet. I simply choose to limit my munchings to the less sentient  varieties of life.  I am not opposed to drinking milk or using dairy or eggs but I am very concerned with how the animals used for this purpose live out their days.  I am totally in favor of humane farming, like in the good old days.  Cows used to head to the barn to be milked because they enjoyed it and it was such a relief.  Compare that to living your days in a stall 3 by 8 foot and permanently hooked up to a milking machine.  We do things the Lord never intended. Just because it can be, doesn't mean it should be, or has to be. 
I want a gentler, kinder, world where we live in harmony with all our fellow creatures.  This is what I pray for on Earth Day.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

My first impressions of India

It was April, 1965 and my husband, Srini, and I exited Pan Am flight 1, around the world flight, in the airfield in New Delhi.  We had been traveling more than 26 hours with stops in London, Frankfort, Istanbul, Beirut, Tehran,  Delhi.  It had been my first International flight. As we landed just before dawn, it was dark and little could be seen from the window of the 707 we had flown in.  It took some time for all the passengers to get up, gather their belongings and slowly deplane. As I climbed down the stairs of the platform, which had been rolled up to the exit, the dawn was just beginning to break.  It was around 5:00AM.
I remember most vividly, as if it happened yesterday, the sights and sounds and smells of India which greeted me.  I saw a vast field with light just beginning to come up over the horizon.  I could make out palm trees in the distance and small tents and structures with dim shapes and forms just discernible. in front and among the trees.  I saw in the distance the terminal toward which passengers with their hand bags, were walking. All the luggage from the flight was lined up in long lines beside the plane and we had to identify each of our bags before beginning the trek to the terminal.
From my decent down the stairway platform, to our inspection of bags, to the walk to the terminal all my senses were invaded by new experiences but none more than my sense of smell.  Mostly I remember the scent of India. There was a breeze blowing and I inhaled smells of fuel from the plane, wood or charcoal burning from the distant campers preparing their breakfasts, and the damp pungent smell of earth.  The packed earth we were walking on as we crossed the airfield.  The runways were concrete but the rich earth of India was what we walked upon across to the terminal.  I knew as soon as I set foot in India that I was somehow home. I have never forgotten those scents. They are ingrained in my memory forever, and at odd times and in odd places I have said to Srini, "it smells like India", and I am again flooded with memories.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

The Day after the night before

Do you feel exhausted on the day after all the non-stop news?  I am a news junkie and have trouble tearing myself away.  I am O.K. if I do not turn it on, but once on it is so hard to turn off.  I have a friend who never watches or listens to any news.  She is nearly always aware, somewhat, of what is going on and if she feels she should know a little more she goes to the Internet.  She doesn't vote either.  She figures why bother, either side is equally corrupt. 
More and more I sympathize with her negative viewpoint.  I do, however, figure you have to be in it to win it, and I would feel guilty if I didn't at least try to make an informed decision.

Every tribe or pack,  animal or human, bird or other critter,  has it's leaders and it's followers.  It has it's middle of the roaders, the unconcerned who relies on others to provide for and protect them, and the outcast who leaves to be a lone wolf. They sometimes also have  a usurper who struggles to overcome a leader and take over an existing tribe. All have their place in God's world and for a time he allows all of them to exist.  Many dynamics take place in this closed loop and for a moment in time various combinations occur and then dissolve.  A bee hive or an ant colony may appear more or less static, but even here outside influences and occurrences can rupture the tribe's unity and cause catastrophe, and new beginnings with different players to occur.  Any student of nature, human or more seemingly structured nature, is amazed by the situations which can and do occur. 
 As a news junkie I fall into this category, more than another.  I always want to know what is going on.  I want to know everything. It isn't that my life isn't already full enough, it is that there is always more to learn, absorb and think about. I can't solve any of the problems but like a person with no teeth I can gum the hell out of it.

Friday, April 19, 2013

One Down, Is it Enough?

They got one of them!!!
It is really good to find out how well our trained local forces can work in emergency situations.  Our Police, Firefighters, State Troopers, all local Law Enforcement Agencies and the FBI are working and have worked together with the Public to bring one of the bombing perpetrators to justice and are close on the tail of the other one.  Is this an awesome country or what? When you ask people for help you get it. 
It is not political and justice is served when we all work together for the Public Good.
So sorry but this just isn't enough.
How sad and telling that in other areas the Public Good and interests be durned, Large Corporations and the Gun Lobby will have their way and the Public vote, polls, and opinion be ignored. On The other sides of the Marathon bombing story, are the Gun Background check vote in the Senate and the Fertilizer Plant Explosion in Texas.  Were you aware that upwards of 90% of our people support background checks before gun sales, and the last time OSHA inspected the fertilizer plant was in 1985.  OSHA as you may or may not be aware is responsible for safety of the American Working stiffs.  This agency has been unpopular and lacked staffing and funding since Unions began to be discredited in the 1980's. Unfortunately even more Govt Agencies will be understaffed or closed with the Sequester and other huge budget cuts on the horizon.
Watchdog agencies, Police, fire and other Protective services are consistently being cut and if we are not very careful we will be cut out of our proud status of the Greatest, Best and most Generous Country in the World.  We all know all this but we are lethargic in our responses.

P.S.  I have capitalized throughout the above for emphasis.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Feynman and a few other thoughts.

I have to mention how I loooooooove Richard Phillips Feynman.  He is the best and most lucid physicist I have never understood.  You may not realize that philosophy and metaphysics are tightly tied to physics.  In my long lost youth I studied physics reasoning's in my philosophy classes under Harvey, and later pursued articles and books written by physicist's like Steven Hawkins and Feynman as well as articles in magazines which updated for the layman the latest thoughts in string theory, M-theory, Big Bang, parallel universes, and higgs bosen.
In seventh grade when we were introduced to nuclear physics and I learned about atoms, neutrons and electrons I decided I had never heard anything so fascinating and decided I wanted to be a nuclear physicist.  As soon as I learned one had to become proficient in math I promptly changed my career direction to horse trainer.
All in all I have had a love affair or should I say a one night stand, with physics, and realize I must get Feynman's books out of the library, I'm talking his easy books, and reread them.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Curse or Blessing

I am here again wondering if what I am doing is worth anything.  I do not mean is $ but in real worth.  I used to say I wanted to be a writer.  When I was in fifth grade my teacher told me I would have to write but that no one would ever be able to read it because of my spelling.  Poor man had no fore knowledge of spellcheck.  I tried writing in my early twenties but quickly realized that that I simply didn't know enough to write.  Mama had told me you need to write about what you know.  I felt my experiences had been so mundane that I should wait until I was older and understood more.  This may have been a cop out but I could not develop any rhythm.
We had moved to our newly built little Ranch house on L.I., and my beloved Srini told me I didn't have to work anymore unless I wanted.  I settled down to try and get pregnant and to write.  I had my little Smith Corona portable typewriter my dad had gotten me when I was taking typing in high school.  I wrote at the kitchen table.  I had numerous instances of bad poetry and a number of small thoughts several paragraphs long, but nothing of significance would come to me.  I remembered what Mama had said about writing what you know and I just didn't know enough.  After a few weeks of non-productivity I abandoned the writing and started to look for a job to keep me busy. I found one and life shifted.  I never became pregnant either, do you think the two things might be related?
Eventually, I would go onto many other things(subjects for another day), but my writing was limited to papers for school, projects for work and letters to friends.  I have always journaled to some degree but never long informational narratives.  My journaling was most often limited to who, what and more often when.  When I went to live in India for three years I again thought I would write.  I had my father-in-laws little portable typewriter, which we had given to him 30 years before, and again I sat down daily to write.  I felt by now I had experienced so much that surely I had plenty to write about, NOT.
I found myself with the same writers block but this time with the caveat that everything important had already been written about.  Like Alexander, I wept because there were no new worlds to conquer.  By this time I had read and studied most of the great thinkers from Plato to Spinoza, from the Bible to the Upanishads, to the Bhagavad Gita, to the Koran, to the Buddha and beyond.  I had studied the great literature and the poets and even brought to India my business gurus like Napoleon Hill, Steven Covey, Brian Tracy, etc. etc. and self-help tapes from the likes of Anthony Robbins, and time management studies as well as memory tapes. I had sought knowledge in all the right as well as all the wrong places.  Guess what?  Everything I had to say had already been written and said better than I could ever aspire to write.  I was defeated before I ever began.  Fiction was not an option for all the same reasons.  All the good stories had been told and retold by the masters. How could I ever aspire???
So my India writings followed my earlier efforts.   Small paragraphs of hopelessness and despair and a few letters carefully typed to family.  I came back to the US, got a job and worked for another 10 years.  I again felt once I retired five years ago, I would begin to write but it happened, NOT.  The funny thing is over the last sixty years a body of work has been collecting.  I have never thrown away anything I have ever written.  I haven't kept it for my kids because I have none.  I think I have always secretly hoped that one day when I am long gone someone would stumble across my body of work in a storage locker some place and proclaim my genius.  I know realistically as soon as I depart my beloved husband will have my useless meanderings shredded but hope springs eternal in the human breast, or something like that.  This blog is most likely my only hope for my thoughts to live on.  Nothing ever completely disappears from the Internet, or so they say. Like all things this could be both curse as well as blessing. Well, enough meandering for today.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

I don't know what to say about Boston so i'll say it anyway!

I'm calling on my muse today as the news is leaving me down, feeling less than positive about my human family.  I do not feel like writing this AM but I will because I must. It isn't so much the deaths because the one who dies has no more problems.  It is the family and friends who grieve and forever wonder why.  I believe God takes the best, it is we who still have a lot of work to do who are left to suffer the aftermath.
I mourn the wounded and the bereaved and our shell shocked citizenry.  Every day of their lives from now on will bear the deep wounds of loss of limbs, loss of health, loss of loved ones, loss of dreams, and loss of innocence.  Horrific situations, as we only too well know, happen worldwide every day. There are daily headlines in newspapers and on the web from the farthest reaches of earth, of violence and mayhem and natural disasters.
Why are we even surprised or shaken by just one more event in Boston?  I think we are shaken because of the magnitude of people here for the marathon, both those running and those observers.   and of course the instant coverage due to the influx of news people and networks following the marathon.  Another sporting tradition has been shaken by violence and it reminds one of the bombings of the Olympics in both Germany in 1972 and Atlanta in 1996.
Look to the left and then to the right.  Remember is school we learned how two out of five of us would fart in the next 10 minutes, or some other such statistical nonsense.  Well, we each could become a victim of violent acts in our lifetime and so could our family members and friends.  Each of us is connected to life by a very thin fragile golden thread.  Gossamer like a spider dangling from his own thread as he moves around his world building his web.  This thread can be severed at any moment and life itself is so infinitely precious.  We must constantly be prepared for both mayhem and death; and we must appreciate what we have while we have it. Sure there will be news and stories and punditry, and world leaders will all give their seasoned and reasoned input. 
The one thing I hope and pray each of us takes away from the world  and national events is to live each day as if it counts.  As the Master has said:
 Love one another as I have loved you. By this shall all men know that you are my disciples if you have love one toward another.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Just don't know?

Woke up this AM with desire to  blog but have no preconceived idea of what.  Decided to go with the flow.  Do you ever find what you write or say has nothing to do with what you might have planned.  I call this my Muse.  One of many I might add. It is often when I think too much that I get in trouble.  I worry about how I might appear or what others might think.  Does this ever go away?  You would think at my age I could just let all that go, but no.  It still lingers in the back waters of consciousness telling me, not good enough.  Thank Heaven for other stronger voices who tell me just do it anyway.  I am tempted to call out my mental advisories but think that might be a little dangerous.  What lurks in the mud and slime should just stay there until it is all replaced by the sparkling Living Water. 
I so love all the creatures and living things in God's creation.  I cannot get enough of the harmony of the Universe. The Grace this little spot in the universe affords me is my true home on earth.  I am so thankful for it, and all of the wondrous beings who inhabit my place in my home.  I do not have to travel far to see you all.  My friends of the heart and mind and soul.  I call out to all of you, you know who you are.  What you do not know is what you mean in my life.  I am so grateful for the Internet, Skype, Facebook, Google, and the great minds who created these sites and the hard and software to run them.  I have felt for a long time that God is like the most high in the cloud of ether, above and surrounding and in the universe. When we pray it is like logging on and sending our emails.  They say the next advance in Devices will be to have an inplant in our heads with which we can communicate instantaneously with others; or log in to discover the wisdom of the ages.  I am suggesting we have said inplant already and the soul is the vehicle to reach the outer region.  We just have to be guided in how to use it properly and within the bounds of Truth, Justice and Compassion. For these reasons I follow Jesus and try to learn what He would have me do. He said he would send the Holy Spirit to reside with us, and I believe He has. 

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Can we become  kinder and gentler people?   
In my younger years I was a very angry person.  I may have gotten my temper from my dad but I think I already blame him for enough.  I really think my temper was innate, passed down in the genes from my earliest roots.  Wherever I got it I have it and have dealt with it in many different ways over the years.
When I was growing up I buried it.  It was mostly directed at my dad, my town, upstate NY, my fellow students in school, who never seemed to accept me, no matter how nice I was to them.  I learned early on to hide my rage because railing at my dad was never a good idea and with all the others I was trying so hard to be accepted that I could let no one know how I really felt.  I hid my anger under sarcasm, humor, and outright lies.  As a consequence I cried a lot.  All that pent up frustration had to come out somewhere so poor little Claire became a big crybaby.  I can remember getting off the school bus, going into the barn and sobbing my heart out against my horse's soft neck and wiping my tears with his mane.  My horse Pinocchio was the only one who really loved me. I must have been 9 or 10 at the time. Animals have always helped me through my deepest sorrow and I have counted my animal friends  among my deepest lifelong friends. 
Later I remember as a young 18 year old in NYC absolutely hating people on the NY subway.  We would all be crushed against one an other's bodies in the hot humid summers and I would visualize killing the men who took advantage of the situation with a ball  preen hammer to the temple.  I also visualized carving them up with a very sharp knife and skinning them the way my dad and uncle skinned dead deer when butchering them.
No one who knew me had any idea of the blood thirsty thoughts I had when my anger was raging. 
Eventually these thoughts were tempered with some sort of control, but I have always felt "there but for the Grace of God, go I"  I have never knowingly lied to myself and I am aware of how close the separation is between our thoughts and our actions.  Every action is first a thought in the mind and the follow through can be an excess of external chemicals in the body(alcohol or meth, etc.), or our own internally produced chemicals like adrenalin, hormones and all the triggers produced by disease, both mental and physical.
Any way, I hid my anger for the most part and while I would fight and argue for others in what I felt was injustice, I would not fight for myself. I would instead use my old tool box of sarcasm, humor and pithy statements to hold my enemies at bay and in worst cases resort to fantasies of mayhem and death for my antagonists.  This began to change in College when I took philosophy classes in Plato and Spinoza. I was 27 and for the first time I realized that the questions I had asked all of my life, had also been asked centuries before by persons who had the same thoughts and questions.  (O.K. I was a slow learner who had no idea what Philosophy was.  I knew about Christianity and Jesus but knew of no one who asked what does it mean to be whole, perfect and eternal and infinite?)
At Queens college I encountered the greatest teacher I have ever known. He was a friend to my husband and I for 10 years until circumstances intervened and we grew apart.  This great teacher is Harvey Burstein and he still teaches in the Philosophy Dept. at Queens college.
With Harvey and philosophy I became a better person inside and the fantasies of physically harming others became less, but I still didn't know how to handle my fear and the resulting anger it produced.
This was left until I began Martial Arts, Kaze Arashi Rhu,  aiki jujutsu, specifically.  There I met the second greatest teacher in my life, Henri-Robert Vilaire.  Sensei Vilaire was and is an enigma and I will only say that six months after I began learning at his little school in Jackson Heights, Queens, my deepest physical fears left me, almost entirely. 
I believe this happened because even though I knew I might not win a fight and that death was and is a possibility, I knew I could do something. I could fight for my life and fight for what I believe in.  Fear no longer was in control and along with the fear went a lot of the anger. I no longer felt I had to submit, hide my thoughts and feelings, and avoid frightening situations.  I am not saying I never fear but I have learned to channel it into defensive, and yes, even offensive action.
Through out this long and incredible journey my husband has always been at my side encouraging me and propping me up when I have weakened.
Sometime in Philosophy studies, late in the night, I found my personal God.  I had a metaphysical realization of how a part could partake of the whole and how the whole was always available, and in fact, saturated the part with Being.  Enough said, I am now a follower of Jesus Christ, and feel God's presence with me wherever I go.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Ken Pierce, the NRA and Gun Control

My dad, Ken Pierce, was a hunter, sportsman, and a gun collector, and a proud member of the NRA. I remember the magazines next to his chair were Outdoor Life, Field and Stream and he always had a current copy of Gun Digest.  Ken hunted and fished Northern New York State. He and his buddies Don Winters, George Cutler and his brother Gerald Pierce had a camp with a log cabin they built themselves from trees they felled on their own land.  Dad had been a game warden on Whitney Park near little Tupper in the Adirondacks.  He loved Guns, hunting, fishing ,the outdoors and he passed this love along to me and my sister.
Ken Pierce was a man's man, and his mantra was cigarettes and whiskey and wild, wild women.  He taught my sister Jackie and I to shoot when we were barely out of diapers, and he gave me my first rifle, a 12 gage shotgun for my birthday when I turned 16.
Ken was a card carrying member of the NRA and very proud of it.  Remember the NRA stands for the National Rifle Association and in the day, when I came of age, they held gun safety classes for young people.  Like I mentioned before Dad was a gun collector. The NRA kept him in touch with other collectors and the newest rifles on the market.
dad kept his weapons in a locked gun cabinet which Jackie was lucky enough to get when he died.  I say lucky because his then wife sold every pistol and rifle dad had, mainly to keep them out of our hands, though she most likely did need the money.. We hauled that sucker of a cabinet out of there before she could think to protest.
I am writing this because I want to make one thing very clear.  My father, Kenneth Blake Pierce, believed in gun registration and was very willing to register both his guns and ammunition, if the times should warrant it.  I had a number of discussions with my father regarding this issue because I to loved guns and Dad gave my husband and I a 22' to keep with us at our home in L.I.
Dad believed it should be very difficult for criminals to legally obtain weapons.  He had no problem with gun registration and background checks because as he said, he had nothing to hide or fear.  He believed in the 2nd amendment and loved his government and country enough to trust them with his life and his guns.  He said that registration would help track his weapons if they were ever stolen and used in a crime, and might help get them back if they went on the resale market.  Of course dad died in 1994 so he didn't own any assault weapons.  I am sure he would have felt they would have ruined the meat on any deer, moose or bear he might shoot.
The NRA has passed the point where they represent sportsmen and gun collectors.  They now represent only the gun manufactures and the survivalist fringe with a few legitimate backward leaning romantics who still dream of a better world back then....but we are living in the now.  Now criminals, wing nuts, anti government groups and the lobbyists hope LaPierre can continue to represent their interests. 
I will forever carry a picture of LaPierre, with spittle foaming at the corners of his mouth and know that my dad, if alive today, would repudiate him and everything he stands for.  As an aside let me close by quoting something I found on a negative LaPierre website:  " LaPierre took numerous student deferments to avoid serving in Vietnam and has never served in the Armed Forces in any capacity. This fits in with his infamously calling FBI and ATF Agents “Jack Booted Thugs”, an accusation so ugly that George W. Bush’s much cooler dad resigned his lifetime NRA membership.  Clearly this man hates America."  If anything the current NRA could do with a classier representative.  They should be ashamed.

Friday, April 12, 2013

I am wondering this morning why I am doing this.  In fact friend husband asked me the same last night.  I said I have some things I want to say before I die.  In fact this is a cop out.  I feel I am not going to die anytime soon but do feel a new freedom to no longer care what so many people think.  Through my life I have tiptoed around others.  I have been concerned with how I look, how I come off, what people will say, what they will really think, etc.etc.etc.....
I have from my youth given the impression I don't care but it has been an external illusion only. Inside I have cared too much.  My Dad used to say "criticism or scoldings ran off Terry's back like water off a duck's back.  Nothing stuck"
This was so not true.  Everything stuck and was recorded on video tapes in my brain which I have played back relentlessly.  Every criticism, every snide remark, every condescending look.  It is all in there and has almost frozen actions on so many fronts.  What would I have dared had I not been so internally judgemental?
I also remember what my Grandmother StClair said to me the summer before college.  Mama had ask her to give me some advice before I went away to school.  Grandma said "be very careful about what groups you join and what you say, as it can come back to harm you in very real ways in the future; with jobs, relationships, public office etc."  I went to college in 1961 and the country had barely survived the McCarthy hearings and their devastating effects on people's lives in the 50's. 
So guess what?  I joined the chess club, the social science club, and the drama club(The Cothurnus), and learned to attend kegs and play pool in my copious spare time.  I flunked out of Geneseo by May'62. A short but merry career in the world of Academia and off to NYC.  Later in 1970 I would return to college at night school and spend 7 long years getting my degree.
Anyhowwwww, I never joined political action groups.  I didn't go to Woodstock, nor did I March on Washington, or anywhere else for Civil Rights, or anything else I believed in.  I hid my opinions deep under a mossy rock and controlled my tongue with all but friends and family.  I was known among them to be quite the firebrand and rebel, and a bleeding heart liberal ta da, but when it counted to show my face for something I believed in, I never showed up.  Paradoxically, I always stood up for individuals and would face down any bully or speak up for anyone who was being treated unfairly.  I do not know why my Grandmother's words had such an effect on me.  I can only think I was so impressed by the Holocaust and the effect it had on peoples lives and I always pictured myself with a very low profile being a freedom fighter in the French underground.  I think I felt if I had a low public profile I could save myself to do more good later.  I may be rationalizing but I really believe that is it.  Hide your thoughts and feelings, don't let too many people know who you really are and you can float along in the world until action is really needed.  Well enough today, Tune in again for more STREAM OF CONSCIOUSNESS.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

musings from 2001

2001- CHAOS BY James Gleick-p.251

“On a philosophical level, it struck me as an operational way to define free will, in a way that allowed you to reconcile free will with determinism.  The system is determinestic but you can’t say what it is going to do next.”

2001-Why do we have to assume that the more complex came from the simple?, as in Big Bang, hydrogen atom to complex diverse universe.

If we assume eternity and no real time space then we could postulate cause was the most complex, infinite complete model.  We could then work back logically to the smallest simple component, i.e... Hydrogen atom, whatever, and that doesn’t mean it caused the final complete effect.  We have just identified it to a finite item.  Perhaps the most complex could be the most simple.  Because we see growth and development in time we assume it holds true for infinite reality.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013


Let all be warned that PooBah is now blogging.  Those who value the integrity of their internal world  would best be warned of upcoming dangerous encroachment into the realm of nonsense and disbelief.


this is a test post.