Sunday, April 26, 2009

On Key

And on time.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

I Surrender

To the Whims of Paradise

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Tapping Into Life

The Rhythm of the Ages
Anna Harper, 88, has been tap dancing for 81 years.
I've been intending to learn how to tap dance for a long long time but being the slow poke I am I haven't gotten around to it yet. I see what I've been missing and it's with a great sigh of relief that I realize I need not rush nor regret my pace. My dream can still come true. Kicking the floor at 90. Dancing till the finale.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Palm Wine and Song

"The sweet, old West African tradition of palm wine guitar has few great players left. Palm wine music dates back to the days when Portuguese sailors first introduced guitars to West African port cities. Early African guitarists and bottle percussionists played at gatherings where revelers drank the fermented sap of palm trees, a traditional alternative to bottled beer.
Rogie, from Sierra Leone, was/is palm wine music's greatest ambassador. "

The blend of Portuguese and African music has created some of the finest in the world. Palm wine music combines the happy sounds of calypso from Trinidad to create music that belies the circumstances surrounding the origins in the days of the slave trade. This video slips in some reality about today as well. Satire certainly helps. No wonder I love calypso.
"Calypso rhythms can be traced back to the arrival of the first African slaves brought to work in the sugar plantations of Trinidad. Forbidden to talk to each other, and robbed of all links to family and home, the African slaves began to sing songs. They used calypso, which can be traced back to West African kaiso, as a means of communication and to mock the slave masters.
Trinidad was colonized by the Spanish, received large numbers of French immigrants, and was later ruled by the British. This multi-colonial past has greatly impacted the development of calypso in Trinidad. Many early calypsos were sung in a French-Creole dialect called patois. These songs, usually led by one individual called a griot, helped to unite the slaves."

The complex tapestry of language, music, political communication, and connection through travel across the oceans of the world never ceases to fascinate. Happiness is inexplicable and unpredictable, as it weaves in and out of tragedy. We get it all.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

My Faith Redeemed

Venus Goes Direct at 29 Pisces
If you click onto this link you will find a remarkable experience awaiting.
"Susan is a reminder that it's time we all looked a little deeper. She has lived an obscure but important life. She has been a companionable and caring daughter. It's people like her who are the unseen glue in society; the ones who day in and day out put themselves last. They make this country civilised and they deserve acknowledgement and respect.
Susan has been forgiven her looks and been given respect because of her talent. She should always have received it because of the calibre of her character."
I knew something would happen when Venus reached 29 Pisces but never in a million years would have I expected this. Soul and inspiration pop up in the most unusual places, made ever so sweet in the midst of fear and hate over petty things and human realities. The first note Susan sang brought such a release of joy in the crowd, I can't help but think we are in special need of some redemption, some honesty, and have been unable to find it, trying to create it where it doesn't exist, encountering disappointment ... wondering about this thing called hope that's been marketed so extensively. Maybe it's the 29 Pisces, but here is the real thing. And it's rare. The honest treasures of life are woven in and among the threads invisibly. The quote above is from a wonderful article written about this eventful night which states that the beauty that matters is always on the inside. 29 Pisces Venus in its imperfect perfection.
Hugs, kisses, and infinite thanks to Tseka and Joe.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

A Noteworthy Study

I'm pleased to announce that distinguished salt expert, Dr. Boron, together with colleague and biologist, Dr. Fern Fytoid, have been commissioned by the influential organization Scientists and Cellists for Immediate Radical Transformation to study the salt levels of public figures as a possible path to understanding why people behave very similarly to animals at a salt lick. Perhaps it is a mineral imbalance, he surmises, or something in their shoe polish.
Dr. Boron has had considerable success studying the licking behaviors of the South Dakota porcupine. He and Dr. Fytoid are going to combine the results and see if they can relate the natural world to the body politic, in terms of licking.

There have also been some parallels drawn to domesticated dogs and water bowls, but as yet, no one has been formally chosen to study these phenomena.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

A Curious Conundrum

Regulation and Premature Exhilaration

The Nee ...anderthal Man
Probably took a puff or two
From the fire, in the cave
And the Cro-Magnon too
"Smoking takes years off your life and adds dollars to the cost of health care. Yet nonsmokers cost society money, too -- by living longer.
House members described huge health care costs associated with smoking as they approved landmark legislation last week giving the Food and Drug Administration authority to regulate tobacco products. No one mentioned the additional costs to society of caring for the nonsmoking population that lives longer.
Smokers die some 10 years earlier than nonsmokers, according the Center for Disease Control, and these deaths provide a savings to Medicare, Social security, private pensions and other programs. Vanderbuilt University economist, Kip Viscusi studied the net costs of smoking related spending and found that for every pack of cigarettes smoked, the country reaps a net cost savings of 32 cents.
A Dutch study published last year said that health care costs for smokers were about $326,000 from age 20 on, compared with about $417,000 for thin healthy people, who, of course, live longer."Erica Werner: The Associated Press
Hmmm ... What to do? let 'em die or tax them and hope you come out even, not including the costs of passing, administering, and enforcing the laws. I could use the $.32.

Blues singer Alberta Hunter. Painting: Rene Magritte

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Approbrium or Rocket-Charged Elevation?

64. Wei Chi / Before Completion
I had a consultation with the I Ching last night and the 64th hexagram presented itself for consideration. The volume had this to say:
The conditions are difficult. The task is great and full of responsibility. It is nothing less than that of leading the world out of confusion back to order. But it is a task that promises success, because there is a goal that can unite the forces now tending in different directions. At first, however, one must move warily, like an old fox walking over ice.
I read that and said, "Yeah. That sounds good. Easy for an old fox. I know this one. Take my sweet time."
Then it went on to say:

In times of disorder there is a temptation to advance oneself as rapidly as possible in order to accomplish something tangible. But this enthusiasm only leads to failure and humiliation if the time for achievement has not yet arrived. In such a time it is wise to spare ourselves the approbrium of failure by holding back.
Boy, do I get that one. The approbrium is something I'd love to miss. I feel like a primed rocket, though, but I recognize the wise advice being so generously offered here. I'm really not opposed to failure even. It's the approbrium I can do without. Not for this old fox.

Friday, April 03, 2009

King of the Blues

Simple blues in C
I'm howlin' like a coyote
Underneath the moon
Mad as a jackal
And dizzy as a loon
I'm wacked ... out ... almost split in two
Tryin' to please myself and tryin' to please you
Hey Mister, come hear what I gotta say
I am gonna do it

A king has got his castle and a queen has got her throne
I'm gettin' kicked out of my happy home
There's an element of something thick in the air
And a big fat rat scratchin' round upstairs
And if ... you don't think I can stay
I am gonna do it

When you're high upon the mountain, king of the hill
Pickin' and choosin', doin' what you will
Remember while I'm down here singin' the blues
That the high and the mighty got the most to lose

I'm stayin' out of trouble, this point in my life
Stayin' out of trouble, tryin' to do it right
I'm not hurtin' anyone and no one is hurtin' me
I'm just as nice as I can be
And if ...
You don't like what I do or say
I am gonna
Do it anyway
I am gonna
Do it

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Gee 1 or However Many

Your Excellence
The summit meeting will convene at Raging Universe this evening. The menu will consist of a whole wheat pita appetizer with capers and Mars-dried tomatoes. The main course will be meatless meat parmesan, and dessert will be non-existent. All wasted food will go to the crocodiles in the city zoo. Cocktails are being served beginning at 4:15 PM. Please bring your own napkins since we are on a very tight budget.
I am looking forward to your distinguished presence as together we solve the economic crisis currently taking place on earth.
P.S. Kiss my ass.