May 27, 2004

Focal points

RANDOMNESS IS THE watchword of today’s focal points, which probably makes this entire feature a contradiction in terms, but so be it.

First -- because it’s a perfect example of the kind of random oddity that I always find interesting (and sometimes profoundly thought provoking) – German physicists have concluded the cosmos is shaped like the Eiffel Tower. But after you’ve finished sneering, jeering, or making jokes about the now-inevitability of jack-suited SpaceNazis goose-warping across the galaxies, focus intently on the shape of the Eiffel Tower and contemplate this: imagine the tower as an abstract expressionist’s upside-down rendering of a striking snake. The snake has just launched himself at his adversary; his mouth gapes open, his fangs are bared, his body is elongated into a straight line that tapers toward his tail. Now shift realities: the serpent’s fangs are the legs of the tower, the serpent’s head is the base, the serpent’s body is the long tapering length of the tower, with the grid-work representing scales. Then reflect on Einstein’s theory the universe is not linear -- that it curves back upon itself. In other words, if the universe is shaped like the Eiffel Tower but is curved, one end toward the other, it is also shaped like a serpent who consumes herself -- perhaps to perpetuate her own being. What does that suggest? The Ouroboros: the cosmic snake said to encircle the earth. Once again, ancient metaphysical symbolism may have anticipated modern physics – not because we were visited by aliens from some distant planet of missionary pedagogues, but because the human mind is as infinitely powerful as the universe is infinitely large. A link to the universe-as-Eiffel-Tower story is here.

Because it is just maybe the most telling example I have ever found of another sort of infinity – the limitless arrogance of bureaucrats – next is a story about why life in the European Union will soon be as regimented as life in the Third Reich, but without the politically suspect diversions of torchlight parades. This is not hyperbole, nor is what comes next a non-sequitur: I am an unabashed dog lover. I have joyously lived with dogs all my life -- dogs of various breeds and sizes (though most have been middling-large to very large), and all of them have been enough part of my household to have specific responsibilities that range from watchfulness and threat-analysis to the complexities of various sorts of hunting. We live under the same roof and spend quality time together indoors or out. Hence I know exactly how dogs behave when strangers of either the bipedal or quadrupedal variety attempt to steal their bones – bone theft and bone-theft prevention are in fact carefully practiced skills among canines of all breeds and subspecies – and I believe the dog-robbing bureaucrats in this episode deserve not only a severe chomping but a long succession of three-legged gestures of contempt. The link to the report that so raised my hackles and set me a-snarling is here.

Lastly, though I am not much of an Ann Coulter fan, there is no doubt she sometimes speaks truths no one else dare utter. Her column this morning is just such an essay, and it contains facts the major media have chosen to downplay or ignore. It mellowed me right out – no small feat after my contemplation of the bone-thieves of the EU, during which my dogs Brady and Jasmine both joined me in bare-fanged growling at the text on the VDT. I hope Coulter’s prose will bring a smile to your face just as it brought a smile to mine -- which of course set both my dogs' tails a-wagging too. The link to this good medicine is here.

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posted by at 11:03 AM : Comments (0)

White Buffalo Calf Born in Arizona

I DID NOT get back to this machine until much later than I predicted. Another in the ongoing successions of domestic crises stole away my time. But here is what I had intended to post:

(With a grateful tip of the hat to Allegra, who also wrote the following intro:)

Two thousand years ago, they say, in the Black Hills of Dakota, a white buffalo calf appeared to the Lakota and suddenly transformed herself into a beautiful Indian maiden.

The Sioux called her ''White Buffalo Calf Woman'' and received from her all their sacred ceremonies and the Sacred Peace Pipe.

Lakota prophecy holds that the birth of a white buffalo calf would be a sign that White Buffalo Calf Woman has returned again to purify the world– to restore harmony and spiritual balance.

The birth of such a calf, as described by Allegra and foretold by the legend she relates, is announced here

Which prompts me to add the following verse of traditional poetry:

The white man’s god has foresaken him
Let us go and look for our Mother
...We shall live again...

These lines are from a Cheyenne Ghost Dance song, part of the Ghost Dance religion that swept the plains tribes in the 1880s and ended – after Christian missionaries objected to the rebirth of aboriginal spirituality – with the massacre at Wounded Knee on December 29, 1890. But perhaps that is partly wrong. Perhaps the Ghost Dance did not end at all. Perhaps the Ghost Dance was but a prelude to the rebirth of something far greater. And perhaps that is yet another reason Islam wages such relentless war on America.

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posted by at 06:45 AM : Comments (3)

May 14, 2004

focal point

I am still trying to find or reconstruct the would-have-been commentary my computer inexplicably ate three nights ago, so far without success. This was first infuriating, then profoundly dismaying, now merely depressing, and for three very separate reasons: it was unusually good writing in that it segued through a half-dozen seeming unrelated subjects and tied them into a single package of relevance (something I often attempt but don’t always achieve); the style of the prose itself represented a major breakthrough in my (often difficult) journey beyond the impersonal, imperial voice of professional journalism – a journey I hope is toward the letter-from-a-knowledgeable-friend tone that seems characteristic of all the more effective blogs; and, lastly, it was the first time I have ever mentioned in print or publicly acknowledged the fact that, 32 years ago, I was one of the two human victims of an infinitely ruinous house-fire.

The other person and I escaped physical injury simply because neither of us was present when the house burned, though the flames killed the owner’s three very beloved domestic cats. The house was a huge old cedar-log pioneer cabin on rural property in Washington state that had remained in the owner’s family since construction of the house, barn and outbuildings in the 1870s, and I had stored my files, books and a number of other possessions in one of the house's vacant rooms when I returned to New York City in 1983. The owner, the late Helen Farias, who was one of my dearest and closest friends, was at work at Western Washington University 20 miles away when the fire broke out, and she learned of what had happened only when she returned at the end of the day. The emotional blow was devastating and the material loss was immeasurable: Helen’s home was burned literally to the ground, her animals and gardens were dead, and all her work and all of mine were ashes. The latter included two books in progress – one a collaboration with Helen – plus all the related photographs, drawings and research material, and nearly everything else of any creative or professional consequence I had done prior to that awful moment. The fire was of course one of those disasters that reshapes a human life from top to bottom – it certainly had that impact on me – but the cannons of journalism (at least journalism as I learned to practice it) demanded I remain silent about the entire matter. The lost blog was thus a kind of Coming-Out, the long-range implications of which I cannot possibly assess, and I am especially vexed Fate chose to obstruct it as it was obstructed – though in this life, Fate has only very seldom been my friend.

That said – and presumably now that you understand the reasons for my sulking absence (though I apologize nevertheless) – we have arrived at today’s focal point, a link to a far brighter and more attractive subject, both literally and figuratively. Our Declaration of Independence tells us that the cornerstones of American freedom are “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,” and though Islam finds the entire ethos infinitely infuriating, it is Islam’s secretly envious pornographically minded hatred of our potential for earthly happiness – especially the decidedly sensual pursuit of earthly happiness by women – that powers and inflames Islamic blood-lust to global magnitude. Hence – not only because it will surely infuriate Moslems and is thus an appropriate uplifted finger of defiance in the face of the false god Allah and his sodomitic, whore-son bastard of a Prophet, but also because it prompted me to smile myself out of this morning’s lingering dark mood -- here is a delightful example of that light-hearted proud exquisite brazenness so typical of the women of Westernesse, especially women who live on the island of Manhattan (which Mayor John Lindsay used to call “Fun City,” and which during my youth in the late 1960s was most assuredly just that): some Fun City Fun courtesy of The New York Post and one of its staffers (who is herself clearly working hard to overcome the old, stuffy canons of journalism).

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posted by at 12:17 PM : Comments (0)

May 11, 2004

focal point

The first of today’s focal points is the grisly story of a Palestinian woman who as a young girl survived the Islamic ritual of “honor” killing. She had been seduced – essentially raped and impregnated – by a neighbor, and her family’s response was to douse her with gasoline and set her afire, then try to poison her when the burns alone failed to kill her. I link to it with a shudder of genuine repugnance, but I think it is essential reading because it reflects more graphically than anything I have ever seen the obscenity of Islam, the dreadful fate that awaits all women everywhere should the forces of the global caliphate prevail, the unspeakable horror that confronts Israel every moment of its existence -- and thus precisely why it is our soldiers are in Iraq and Afghanistan fighting for the survival of American liberty and Western Civilization. Thanks to The Ottawa Citizen for defying the cult of political “correctness” to publish this report, available here.

As bright Yang against the foregoing dark Yin, the second of today’s focal points is an intriguing discussion of periodic cicadae and prime numbers, specifically 13 and 17, speculating on how these cicadas -- who are loudly emergent this year -- might have arrived at prime-number life-and-mating cycles. The resultant probabilities should give us hope. If cicadas can evolve lives measured in prime numbers and thus escape their natural predators, perhaps homo sapiens sapiens can evolve a future blessedly free of “honor” killings, suicide bombings and indeed all other forms of Islamic atrocities and terrorism. Meanwhile, let us contemplate the wondrous workings of nature, which we can do by going here.

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posted by at 07:53 AM : Comments (0)

May 10, 2004

Go Get Your Free Shrimp!

Like Loren, I'm off looking for offbeat, uplifting news today. Current affairs can bog you down after a while, and it's necessary to get out, breathe the air, look around, and experience what we're fighting for.


Do you live near a Long John Silver's? If so, then go get your free giant shrimp!

This is fun, but no joke. In honor of the evidence supporting the past existence of saltwater on Mars, participating Long John Silvers restaurants are offering customers a single Giant Shrimp. The promotion runs today only, from 2 to 5 p.m..

Here's the Press Release from the restaurant's own website.

I wish there were a LJS near me. sigh

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posted by Linda at 06:15 PM : Comments (1)