Updates from April, 2016 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • mistermuse 12:01 am on April 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , commercialization, , , , Napoleon Bonaparte, , , , , , , ,   

    HUMOR INCORPORATED 

    Humor must both teach and preach if it would live forever; by forever, I mean 30 years.
    –Mark Twain

    If Webster’s definition of humor as the “quality of imagination quick to perceive the ludicrous or express itself in an amusing way” is on the mark, Twain underestimated the staying power of his humor by nigh onto 100 years (and counting). But “staying” is just one of humor’s possible powers, and because (as Lord Acton famously observed) power tends to corrupt, humor cannot absolutely avoid Acton’s axiom.

    My musing on this subject is occasioned by April being National Humor Month — so proclaimed in 1976 by Larry Wilde, Founder/Director of The Carmel Institute of Humor: http://www.larrywilde.com/

    As you might expect, The Carmel Institute of Humor is not without serious competition. A similar entity I’ve come across is The Humor Project, Inc., founded by Joel Goodman in 1977 “as the first organization in the world to focus full-time on the positive power of humor” — a claim that suggests a merger of Norman Vincent Peale’s “The Power of Positive Thinking” with funny business. And, from such appealing funny businesses as Goodman’s, have big businesses grown (judging by their “power” promotions): https://www.humorproject.com/

    Now, far be it from me to regard the corporatizing of humor as a phony business — hey, there are worse things to make of humor than a commodity, and worse ways to earn a buck than to commercialize the process. But, purist that I am, I see making humor in the same light as making love: much to be preferred on a human level than as an industry (the virtues of consumer capitalism notwithstanding). Nonetheless, I’m not so doctrinaire as to deny either humor or sex to potential customers when free(?) enterprise comes a-courting.

    Unlike Larry Wilde and Joel Goodman, mistermuse does not have a Speaker’s Bureau, a three-day Annual Conference (discounted fee for early registration), a five-point humor program, seminars or workshops. But mistermuse does offer an every-five-days discourse on subjects of interest (his, if not yours) — usually with tongue in cheek, and never with hat in hand. Dis course today concludes with ten humorous quotes, which come with a funny-back guarantee if he doesn’t think they’re priceless:

    Bigamy is having one wife too many. Monogamy is the same.Oscar Wilde (not to be confused with Larry – or Curly or Moe, for that matter)
    Conference: a meeting held to decide when the next meeting will take place. –Evan Esar
    You can’t study comedy; it’s within you. –Don Rickles (the Donald Trump of insult-comics)
    Start every day off with a smile and get it over with. –W.C. Fields
    Everything is funny, as long as it’s happening to somebody else. –Will Rogers
    Culture is roughly anything we do and monkeys don’t. –Lord Raglan
    In politics, an absurdity is not a handicap. –Napoleon Bonesapart (I’ve been waiting a long time for the opportunity to butcher that name)
    Politicians do more funny things naturally than I can think of doing purposely. –Will Rogers
    Humor is just another defense against the universe. –Mel Brooks
    Wit – the salt with which the American humorist spoils his intellectual cookery by leaving it out. –Ambrose Bierce

    Over, and out.

     

     
    • Cynthia Jobin 9:52 am on April 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Why do some people have to ruin the best things in life by turning them into a National Month or an institution/organization of some sort? I thoroughly enjoyed this post, and being partial to the more sardonic (sarcastic? satirical?) edges of humor, was glad to see some of my favorites featured…Oscar Wilde, W.C. Fields, Ambrose Bierce, and of course, Mark Twain.
      On the distaff side, one of my favorites is Dorothy Parker. I offer this bon mot of hers when she was hanging out with her fellow wits challenging each other to compose a funny sentence using the word “horticulture”….Parker’s contribution was: “You can lead a horticulture but you can’t make her think.”

      Liked by 2 people

    • mistermuse 10:28 am on April 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I love Dorothy Parker’s wit and probably should have included a Parker quote, but I’d set myself a limit of ten and liked the ten I’d chosen (plus, I think I already used that great quote before, though it certainly would’ve fit well here, and I thank you for offering it).

      To me, the quote that surprised me the most (in that I didn’t expect such profundity from the likes of Mel Brooks – what’s more, in so few words) was his “Humor is just another defense against the universe.”

      Liked by 2 people

    • D. Wallace Peach 11:03 am on April 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I like the Rickles quote. Well, I like all of them, but that one has always struck me as true. I would love to be funny, but just don’t have the gene. Fortunately, we don’t have to be funny ourselves to enjoy good wit and a belly laugh 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 12:13 pm on April 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Fat people take heart – the bigger the belly, the more capacity to laugh! No wonder Santa Claus is so jolly! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

    • arekhill1 11:09 am on April 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Humor is what separates humans from animals. That, and making tools. And not being afraid of vacuum cleaners.

      Like

      • mistermuse 12:21 pm on April 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Such separation is fortunate indeed, otherwise animals would be laughing themselves silly at what fools we humans be.

        Like

    • Garfield Hug 11:26 am on April 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Great share 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 12:23 pm on April 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Share and share a like, I always say. 🙂

      Like

    • Michaeline Montezinos 8:42 pm on April 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      One good belly laugh extends human life by one year ( My daughter the nurse .)

      Liked by 1 person

    • Todd Duffey Writes on Things 11:21 am on April 16, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Why do witticisms always come from people at least two generations before ours? Those people were way ahead of their time…

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 2:06 pm on April 16, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      As one of those people born more than two generations before this one, I thank you for the tribute. 🙂 Seriously, though, I think there still are such people – they just don’t get the recognition they did in the days before mass instant gratification “re-conditioned” us and became the norm. Wit demands at least a bit of reflection. Who does that anymore?

      Like

    • Don Frankel 11:30 am on April 17, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      “Against the assault of laughter nothing can stand.” Mark Twain. My hero.

      Like

    • mistermuse 6:30 pm on April 17, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Don, I would stand corrected if I didn’t happen to agree (well, except for politicians – they’ve been withstanding the assault of laughter since most of them evolved from baboons).

      Like

    • Don Frankel 7:03 am on April 18, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      No Muse you’re right. Laughing at elected officials is actually a healthy sign of a society and poking fun is a good thing too. But when they are cooked and ushered off the stage laughter is the last thing they hear. Think Anthony Weiner here and Nixon too.

      Like

    • mistermuse 7:42 am on April 18, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Good point, Don. We in the West take our freedom to laugh at politicians for granted. Any North Korean who dared so much as think about laughing at President Kim Jung-un wouldn’t live to think again.

      Like

  • mistermuse 12:00 am on March 30, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , Glenn Beck, , , , Pat Robertson, political dysfunction, , , ,   

    YOU ARE WHO YOU ELECT 

    You are what you eat. –Dr. Victor Lindlahr, nutritionist (1897-1969)

    Pun aside, a lot of whater has passed under the bridge since Dr. Lindlahr coined the above phrase 75+ years ago, and the older I get, the more I’ve taken his caution to heart….with resulting good health to show for it (if I should drop dead tomorrow, I shall reluctantly admit I came to that conclusion a bit prematurely).

    But I have also come to see a parallel to this axiom in the public sector: it’s no accident that we have political dysfunction. We are who we elect. Our elected (and wanna-be elected) officials aren’t anomalies who have somehow passed under voters’ attention spans, leaving us to wonder how such coarse incivility found its way into the political mainstream. Well, wonder no more:

    http://www.gocomics.com/wumo/2016/03/28

    Obviously, then, eatin’ and politickin’ have a lot in common. As with our intellectual standards, if our table manners go down the drain, we regress into uncivilized louts. To combat this uncouth scourge, we must remember our etiquette. Politicians need to model their behavior after the culinary refinement of the epicure:

    Therefore, let us get back to the good old days when politicians may have been idiots, but at least they weren’t tasteless idiots with little sense of propriety. Take these examples:

    It’s time to put our blood or our urine where our mouth is. — Rep. Pat Murphy (D-IA) on drug testing, Feb. 1997

    We have brave men and women who are willing to step forward because they know what’s at stake. They’re willing to sacrifice their lives for this great country. What I’m asking all of you tonight is not to put on a uniform. Put on a [Rick Santorum] bumper sticker. Is it that much to ask? Is it that much to ask to step up and serve your country? –Senator Rick Santorum (R-PA), Jan. 2006

    My problem was, I was too honest with you the first time. –Rep. Tillie Fowler (R-FL), explaining to her constituents why she changed positions.

    The feminist agenda is not about equal rights for women. It is about a socialist, antifamily political movement that encourages women to leave their husbands, , kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism, and become lesbians. –Pat Robertson, 1992 fund raising letter

    They intend to vote on the Sabbath, during Lent, to take away the liberty that we have right from God. This is an affront to God. –Rep. Steve King (R-IA)

    Please burn before reading. –1972 Nixon White House illegal campaign tactics memo

    My friends, no matter how rough the road may be, we can and we will never, never surrender to what is right. –Dan Quayle, Vice President under George H.W. Bush

    I don’t think we came from monkeys. I think that’s ridiculous. I haven’t seen a half-monkey, half-person yet. –Glenn Beck (who apparently hadn’t looked in the mirror lately)

    OK, Pat Robertson and Glenn Beck aren’t politicians. Hey, nobody’s perfect. Well, maybe Sarah Palin is, but we don’t have time to do her justice, so I’ll close with this reminder:

     

     

     

     

     
    • Midwestern Plant Girl 5:24 am on March 30, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I love this quote by Alexander Tyler (or whomever, as I’ve seen speculation he said it. However, it is an awesome quote! )
      The average age of the world’s greatest civilizations from the beginning of history, has been about 200 years. During those 200 years, these nations always progressed through the following sequence:

      From bondage to spiritual faith;
      From spiritual faith to great courage;
      From courage to liberty;
      From liberty to abundance;
      From abundance to complacency;
      From complacency to apathy;
      From apathy to dependence;
      From dependence back into bondage

      Liked by 3 people

      • mistermuse 7:41 am on March 30, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        The patriotic concept of “American Exceptionalism” may have its appeal, but when it’s an OVER-patriotic concept, I fear it’s leading America down the path of the sequence you outline.

        P.S. To those who read this post prior to a half hour ago, I apologize for the confusing link which followed the first two paragraphs (due to my technological incompetence). The wumo cartoon which appears there now is the correct link.

        Liked by 2 people

    • ladysighs 6:01 am on March 30, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      My only thought is “This too shall pass.”

      Liked by 2 people

    • mistermuse 7:54 am on March 30, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Let us hope it passes before blindness makes America unable to see what we’re eating, election-wise!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Cynthia Jobin 8:32 am on March 30, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I got very side-tracked here—enjoyably so—with more videos of the Hoosier Hot Shots….”From the Indies to the Andes in His Undies,”…etc. Thanks for the introduction!

      Liked by 2 people

    • arekhill1 9:45 am on March 30, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Leave it to Pat Robertson to hit the nail right on the head–it’s the girls that are going to do all the heavy lifting, as usual.

      Like

    • mistermuse 9:46 am on March 30, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Cynthia, I must confess a weakness for the Hoosier Hot Shots (I own dozens of their old 78s), which I guess proves that appreciation of wit and “cornball humor” can co-exist in one package. Now if only conservatives and progressives could learn to co-exist cooperatively in one country! 😦

      Liked by 2 people

    • mistermuse 9:58 am on March 30, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Ricardo, it’s not too late to send Pat Robertson (born March 22, 1930) a belated Happy Birthday card to show your appreciation for all he’s done to keep this country from going to the dogs (so it can go to the troglodytes instead).

      Liked by 1 person

    • Mél@nie 2:49 pm on March 30, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I do hope the blond wigged ignorant, racist, barking character will lose…

      • * *

      @”Pat Robertson and Glenn Beck aren’t politicians.” – yeah, I do recall those “bright minds” who have invented hot water(LOL!), and another one “flush limbo”(Rush Limbaugh!)… brrr!!!

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 3:29 pm on March 30, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Some say that’s Trump’s real hair, but in any case, I’m far more concerned about what’s in his head, not on top of it. Speaking of questioning what’s real, Robertson, Beck and Limbaugh (not to mention Sarah Palin) must be cartoon characters — it’s hard to believe real people could be such buffoons (on second thought, maybe not so hard to believe).

        Liked by 1 person

    • tomorrowdefinitely 2:55 pm on March 30, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Great quotes, my favourite is of course Pat Robertson’s prognosis of what feminism entails, he he he!

      Liked by 2 people

    • mistermuse 3:48 pm on March 30, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Note that Robertson’s “prognosis” was stated in a fund raising letter. As a man of God, he not only knows and proclaims God’s will, but knows how to reach into his followers’ pockets while doing it.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Don Frankel 4:14 pm on March 30, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      There is one candidate and only one candidate who can explain to America that it is rough. And, if they don’t get it, she can explain that it is ruff, ruff. And, if they don’t get it, or don’t like it or her, she can always pee on their leg.

      http://www.rabbithashhistsoc.org/the-mayor/current-mayor-lucy-lou/

      Like

    • mistermuse 10:59 pm on March 30, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Unfortunately, I haven’t heard a peep – or should I say, a ruff – out of Lucy Lou lately, Don (ever since fire destroyed the Rabbit Hash General Store). Apparently fearing a vast right paw conspiracy, the Secret Service is still insisting that she live indognito. I hear The Donald was asked to have “his people” look into it, but The Donald wasn’t biting, as he’d rather face Hillary in the election because he doesn’t think she would pee on his leg….plus, she’s very vulnerable as long as her pee-mails remain under investigation.

      Like

    • Don Frankel 6:57 pm on March 31, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Pee-mails? I love it. I might steal it.

      Like

    • mistermuse 7:26 pm on March 31, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Hillary probably loves it too. If she can keep her pee-mails in the mainstream, investigators will find it hard to build a cut-and-dry case against her.

      Liked by 1 person

    • barkinginthedark 12:30 pm on July 25, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      of course agree that morons abound in GOP…and, interesting to me u show “Etiquette Blues” – on one of my CD’s “Who Could Imagine” is my anti GOP song “Etiquette.” nice. continue…

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 1:15 pm on July 25, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I see that Trump just bounced ahead of Hillary in the post-GOP convention poll, which suggests to me that moron-ism is spreading outside of GOP circles. If Hillary doesn’t get a similar bounce after the Dem convention, she (and the country) could be in big trouble.

      Liked by 1 person

  • mistermuse 12:06 am on March 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , King of Hearts, Middlemarch, , , Philippe de Broca, , That Man From Rio, , Zarah Leander   

    THE IDES OF MIDDLEMARCH 

    It’s March 15th, and with it come two ides-of-March birthdays I’d like to note — but first, a note about the post’s title, which came to me from an 1874 novel I had heard of, but never read: MIDDLEMARCH, by George Eliot (Mary Ann Evans). It turns out that MIDDLEMARCH has nothing to do with the middle of March; it’s the name of a town in the Midlands of England (the novel’s setting). But let’s forget that I told you that. What’s the harm in letting it seem as if I made an educated choice for the title of this post?

    In any case, what this is leading up to is a selection of George Eliot quotes, which I daresay you will find to be an oasis of reflective relief in America’s desert of bombastic hot air:

    What do we live for, if not to make life less difficult for each other?

    All meanings depend on interpretation.

    No story is the same to us after a lapse of time; or rather we who read it are no longer the same interpreters.

    A toddling little girl is a center of common feeling which makes the most dissimilar people understand each other.

    What loneliness is more lonely than distrust?

    Adventure is not outside man; it is within.

    Now, as to those two birthdays, I expect that neither of the persons (both deceased) I am about to introduce is known to you (for which you are forgiven, but don’t let it happen again). But all is not lost — I remember them well. Their names: Philippe de Broca and Zarah Leander.

    DE BROCA, born March 15, 1933 in Paris, was a French film director from 1959 to the year of his death in 2004. Of the 30 full-length feature films he directed in his career, I have seen only two….but those two are among my favorite movies of all time: THAT MAN FROM RIO (1964) and the cult classic KING OF HEARTS (1966). Here are three short clips from the former and one from the latter:

    LEANDER, born March 15, 1907 in Karlstad (west of Stockholm), was a Swedish singer and actress who achieved her greatest success in Germany in the 1930s-40s. The German film industry had been seeking a new Marlene Dietrich since Marlene left for the U.S. in 1930. Leander made a name for herself in the same homeland as had Swedish screen diva Greta Garbo, which (beginning in 1936) led to starring roles for Leander in German language films in the hope of filling the void. In her memoir, Leander tells of her initial difficulties dealing with the German Ministry of Propaganda, since “Goebbels was highly displeased that the leading lady should be a foreigner. The fact that the mighty Third Reich could not produce its own Greta Garbo seemed to him an admission of inadequacy.”

    For years, I exchanged correspondence with an elderly German first cousin (on my father’s side) who had remained in Germany until her death a decade or so ago. In one of my letters, I mentioned that I had a number of Zarah Leander recordings in my record collection and liked her voice. My cousin informed me that “The German soldiers were infatuated by her songs during the war.” Perhaps this clip will help you understand why:

     

     
    • ladysighs 5:48 am on March 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      First met George Eliot in high school “Silas Marner”. Just another boring book. 😦
      Later on she became one of my favorite authors. “The Mill on the Floss” is my favorite.
      Some books to be read and reread. 🙂 You know the ending but somehow hope another reading will produce another ending.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 6:58 am on March 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        I love how you end your comment; if I re-read it, I hope it doesn’t change. 🙂

        Like

        • ladysighs 8:09 am on March 15, 2016 Permalink

          I had to return and reread what I wrote about re-reading.
          Many times after posting a comment I have wished I could rewrite it ……… or just delete it. lol

          Liked by 1 person

      • Mél@nie 3:31 am on March 18, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        @”First met George Eliot in high school…” – same here, lady dear… 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

    • linnetmoss 6:23 am on March 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Is that Zarah’s voice? Very reminiscent of Dietrich! I found another by her on Youtube (Bei mir bist du schön) and the voice was not quite so low and androgynous.
      I loved “King of Hearts” but have not seen “Rio.”–Thanks for the recommendation!

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 7:35 am on March 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Zarah was 70 years old when she sang the song in that clip, and her voice was indeed lower and huskier than in the 1930s & 40s. I have in my collection many old records of Zarah, and there are other clips of her in later years, so I can confirm the difference you well noticed.
        As for “King of Hearts,” ditto. I think you would also love “Rio” — not to mention its good-looking star, the insouciant Jean-Paul Belmondo!

        Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 8:59 am on March 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I know the feeling, ladysighs. I can’t tell you how many times that something I wrote didn’t come across the way I intended, and I could kick myself for not catching it before I posted it. But at least I’m still limber enough to be able to kick myself, even at my age. 🙂

      Like

    • Cynthia Jobin 9:25 am on March 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Please don’t kick yourself….I always also confuse George Eliot with George Sand. After all, what business have those ladies calling themselves George? Mary Ann Evans was George ELIOT and Aurore Dupin —pal of Frederic Chopin—-was George SAND. Tough for a lady author in those days.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 10:30 am on March 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Thank you for noticing….after my confusion of the two, I join you in asking what business those ladies have calling themselves George! 🙂 Nonetheless, I will correct the error in my post forthwith!

        Liked by 1 person

    • arekhill1 10:11 am on March 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Sr. Muse, I always mean to thank you for posting on subjects I am too young to comment on, because it doesn’t happen much anymore. I did see “King of Hearts” once in my extreme youth, however.

      Like

    • mistermuse 10:44 am on March 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I appreciate that, Ricardo, but I think that only makes us even, because there are times I feel too old to comment on some of the subjects you post on your blog. But at least your posts are often accompanied by pix of scantily clad young women, which I hope never to be too old to appreciate.

      Like

    • BroadBlogs 9:07 pm on March 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Love those quotes from George Eliot! Hard to say which is my favorite.

      The Ides of March meets Super Tuesday. What’s up with that?

      The assassination of Julius Caesar. The suicide of the GOP — at least at the Presidential level?

      It’s weird year.

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 10:40 pm on March 15, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I agree about the George Eliot quotes. Can you imagine Donald Trump saying, “What do we live for, if not to make life less difficult for each other?” Me neither.
      Speaking of Trump, it appears that Kasich winning Ohio will leave The Donald short of the number of delegates he’ll need to win the Republican nomination going into the GOP convention four months from now. Look for a lot of fireworks in Cleveland in July.

      Liked by 1 person

    • inesephoto 7:13 am on March 16, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Thank you so much for this post! I remember these movies very well! France and Italy have a whole constellation of brilliant movie directors.

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 8:48 am on March 16, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      You’re most welcome! Some movies are so “right” and have a certain magic about them which makes them so unique, you never forget them. RIO, and especially KING OF HEARTS, are two such films.

      Like

    • Don Frankel 1:14 pm on March 16, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      “A toddling little girl…” Great quote. I never heard it before. I did have to read Silas Marner in high school. Maybe this makes up for it. Funny though we both used the Ides of March this week which could mean great minds think alike or well it was the Ides of March were in the offing.

      Like

    • mistermuse 3:36 pm on March 16, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      “A toddling little girl” can melt the heart of any man (whose heart is capable of being melted). Come to think of it, a big girl can do pretty much the same. 🙂

      Usually at this time of year I do a St. Patrick’s Day post, but this year a little green man by the name of Leprechaun told me my Irish Stout jokes were getting stale, hence the ides of March instead. Nonetheless, I wish you a very happy (& not too tipsy) St. Patrick’s Day tomorrow, Don.

      Like

    • Mél@nie 3:33 am on March 18, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      wow, “l’homme de Rio”…”o tempora, o mores!” btw, Jean-Paul Belmondo is 83!!!

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 5:44 am on March 18, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Glad to hear Belmondo is still with us. I notice that Philippe de Broca would also be 83 if he were still alive.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Don Frankel 7:00 am on March 18, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Happy St Patrick’s to you too Muse. I didn’t have a drink but I certainly enjoyed the day. It’s a very special day here in New York.

      Liked by 1 person

    • restlessjo 2:54 am on March 23, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks for reminding me that I haven’t read it either. I really should. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Sharron 10:58 pm on April 11, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Your posts are so “different”. I’m learning a lot. Loved the photos and song from Zarah. I had never heard of her. Thank you for the introduction.

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 6:53 am on April 12, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I appreciate that, Sharron. You are kind and gracious….which is wonderfully different than “kind OF gracious” by a (s)mile! 🙂

      Like

  • mistermuse 12:01 am on March 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , clocks, , Helen Forrest, , , , , , , , , spring forward, ,   

    IT’S ABOUT TIME 

    Half our life is spent trying to find something to do with the time we have rushed through life trying to save. –Will Rogers

    • * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

    Daylight Saving Time arrives on March 13, when, under penalty of painful death or being forced to watch GOP debate videos every day for the rest of your life (you may find death preferable), by law you must arise at 2 a.m. to set clocks ahead one hour….or, if you don’t wish to get up at 2 a.m., you can simply stay up, which many all-night carousers among my readers do anyway (not naming names, of course, but you know who you are).

    As a retiree, I have neither caroused nor set an alarm clock for years, so this presents a problem. On the one hand — which, by the way, many timepieces no longer have, much less two hands (they now have digitalis or some such new-fangled technology) — I may just ignore Big Bro and risk the consequences. On the other hand, I could drink a gallon of coffee, stay up, and when the time comes, set my clocks ahead –or is it back — one hour?

    Last year, my wife reminded me of an easy way to remember which is which: in spring, spring forward; in fall, fall back….to which I said, “Fine — if it’s so easy, you get up and do it.” Unfortunately, my wife has no sense of humor and cleaned my clock. By the time I came to, it was too past two, so I thought to hell with it, and fell back to sleep. Who needs Daylight Saving Time anyway? If there must be a Saving Time, there ought to be a

    To my fellow earth-and-time-sharing fellow Americans, Mexicans, Franciscans, Anglicans, Wiccans, pelicans, toucans of Cannes who can cancan as too few can….and even Republicans: as you know, these are mean times we’re in. It’s enough to drive you cuckoo. I say it’s time to tune out, take a break, and enjoy some timeless old time songs:

    A note on There’ll Come A Time, played by Frank Trumbauer’s Orchestra featuring the great and legendary 1920s cornetist Bix Beiderbecke: Bix was born on this day, March 10, 1903 (less than two years after his friend, Louis Armstrong), and died tragically young of alcoholism/pneumonia at age 28. Actually, Bix Beiderbecke never died….he just ran out of time. His sound was so transcendent, remembered guitarist Eddie Condon, it hit you where you lived, “like a girl saying yes.”

    I see by ye olde clock on yawnder wall that it’s past midnight. Time to Hit the Road to Dreamland* — but that’s another song for another day.

    *by Harold Arlen & Johnny Mercer, 1942

     

     

     

     
    • Midwestern Plant Girl 6:27 am on March 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Losing an hours sleep is a huge deal for my body. My brain thinks its just got sent to another continent with the jet lag I get 😴😩
      I’ll be back to normal in a few weeks. …

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 8:13 am on March 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Never let it be said that mistermuse won’t help a damsel in distress. Here’s a list of countries that have & don’t have Daylight Saving Time:
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daylight_saving_time_by_country

        As you can see, to escape DST, you could move to Hawaii (but then, who would want to live in paradise? 🙂 ), or even some parts of Canada (if you don’t mind freezing your plants off!). Or you could just stay put and get back to normal in a few weeks (unlike mistermuse, who will never be normal). 😦

        Liked by 1 person

        • Midwestern Plant Girl 8:44 am on March 10, 2016 Permalink

          Normal is sooooo overrated!
          Let’s enjoy our quirkiness 😍😉

          Liked by 1 person

    • linnetmoss 6:35 am on March 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I do love my Chevalier! What a great song 🙂 Now MisterMuse, I’m sure Monsieur would agree with me that as a retiree, you ought to be carousing!

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 8:27 am on March 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Well, that depends on whether you mean Monsieur Chevalier or Monsieur Muse who would agree. If it’s the latter, Mademoiselle Muse might not only clean my clock, but make my remaining time on earth a lot shorter than I was hoping for. 😦 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

    • Don Frankel 9:57 am on March 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      While a lot of my clocks are computerized and they switch automatically some are still in the 20th Century and well the next day I never quite know what time is, it as it goes by…

      Which of course leads me to this one and no musical rendition of time would be complete without it.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 2:07 pm on March 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        You got that right, Don – but as much as I dig As Time Goes By (and get pretty tired doing it, ha ha), there are time songs I like even more, including this one:

        Liked by 1 person

    • arekhill1 11:38 am on March 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Some idiot politician out here wants to eliminate DST out here, on the grounds that the one hour life-lag it induces is too dangerous for Californians to endure. The nanny state would rather the sun start streaming through the blinds at 5 AM in San Diego in June.

      Like

    • mistermuse 2:31 pm on March 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I think it’s safe to say that most Californians (& Americans) would find it much more dangerous if voters don’t eliminate DJT (Donald J. Trump) from becoming Pres. Nonetheless, if that idiot politician wants more daylight, maybe he should get behind a Sunshine Law to make the political process more transparent.

      Like

    • Don Frankel 6:05 pm on March 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Great recording Muse and well she’s just the best.

      Like

    • mistermuse 9:56 pm on March 10, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Don, when you have a great song (written by Vincent Youmans, Harold Adamson & Mack Gordon) sung by a great vocalist (Billie Holiday) accompanied by great musicians (including Lester Young, Roy Eldridge & Teddy Wilson), it’s time to say it doesn’t get any better than this.

      Like

    • Jane 8:02 am on March 11, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I love the Will Rogers quote. I often reflect on how many time saving devices we have and yet our days seem so, so busy still! Now that we have email and mobile phones, people expect immediate responses. So while I am very thankful that I’m not slaving over a fire to cook or having to grind and bake my own bread by hand (or am dying of infection from lack of antibiotics), I do wonder why we seem to still be filling up our days with stuff meant to make our lives more efficient but that in reality don’t. That’s why I love walking in the wild – it’s peaceful and being disconnected from the modern world is soothing to the mind. I end up being more productive mentally. In this way, slowing down help me work better in the end. Am I making sense? As for daylight saving, we don’t have it in Queensland. I prefer not to have it, but I guess I am influenced by all the years living on farms where the animals have their own routine based on when the sun rises, not on an artificial time piece. We have plenty of daylight hours here though. I expect it is more useful for people in other parts of the world, who don’t? I always enjoy your posts, even if I don’t get the chance to comment. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 9:02 am on March 11, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Jane, if anyone ever calls you “Plain Jane,” take it as a compliment, because you know how to lead the good life….and thank you for the kind words at the end. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • tomorrowdefinitely 5:13 pm on March 11, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      timely musings and great comments as always 🙂 I have to add my own favourite time song:

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 5:45 pm on March 11, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I thought I had a few Charles Aznavour records in my collection, but in checking, I do not (though I do own a number of Jean Sablon & other French male vocalists). In any case, I like the song and thank you very much for the clip.

      Like

    • BroadBlogs 6:15 pm on March 11, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Look forward to DST! Nice to have tunes to accompany it.

      Liked by 1 person

    • restlessjo 2:52 am on March 23, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      We could write a book about time or the lack of, couldn’t we? Thanks for the smiles 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 5:38 am on March 23, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Like

  • mistermuse 12:02 am on March 5, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Columnist Kathleen Parker, divided America, , , , , , , Mitt Romney, , , , ,   

    ALAS, SHRUGGED 

    Political elections are a good deal like marriages–there’s no accounting for anyone’s taste. –Will Rogers

    • * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

    In a March 2 Cincinnati newspaper article (titled ROAD TRIPPIN’ TO COLUMBUS FOR TRUMP), a reporter writes of accompanying four Trump backers on a drive to Columbus (Ohio) for a DONALD TRUMP FOR PRESIDENT rally: “They’re serious about their support for Trump. They shrug off his bombastic speech.”

    Alas, what they also “shrug off” is any suggestion that Trump is a big-talking combination of P.T. Barnum, bully, and simplistic-solutions artist who can order away the causes of Americans’ discontent as easily as he fires ‘losers’. Shrug–the perfect word to describe the casualness with which Trump supporters dismiss his “bombastic speech.” Bombastic? More like conveniently ignorant (Trump: “I don’t know anything about [white supremacist] David Duke”), or demeaning (“Would anyone vote for that [Carly Fiorina’s] face?”), or pathetic (“He [John McCain] is not a war hero”), or despicable (mocking a reporter, named Serge Kovaleski, who has a disability). Etc. Etc. Etc. But what do his followers care, because they think he “tells it like it is.”

    Here’s how columnist Kathleen Parker saw it in a recent piece titled “The GOP may get what it deserves”: “The challenge for those of us in the observation business [lest you forget, this blog is called THE OBSERVATION POST] is to illuminate what’s plainly obvious without offending those who prefer not to see. But there’s no winning once passions are engaged, and hating the messenger [aka blaming the media] is a time-honored tradition.” Such a business.

    One would expect sensible people to realize that Trump is no cure for the uncompromising dogmatism that plagues our politics. So, how to account for the gullibility (or “taste,” as Will Rogers put it) of those who’ve been seduced by their beloved’s dubious charms. Perhaps some see that rivals like Ted Cruz would only deepen the dogmatic ditch that divides us. But that gives them credit for more sophistication than is their due, in my estimation. Most of them simply don’t see Trump for the humbug he is, and dogmatism is a fancy word that doesn’t pay their bills or kick butt.

    But Mitt Romney knows better:

    Just between us, I find myself hoping that Trump wins the GOP nomination, in the belief (promulgated by Romney and other Republican leaders) that he would lose big to Hillary….and take down with him enough right wing candidates to lose control of the Senate (and hopefully loosen political and tribalistic gridlock in the process). Not that I’m a huge fan of Hillary, but at worst, she is the lesser of two evils, and in any case, more mature, warts and all. Or I may vote for Rabbit Hash Mayor/Presidential candidate Lucy Lou, who may be a dog, but not a dog who tears people apart. Nor, oddly enough, is she the least bit(e) dogmatic.

    What is so hard about understanding that working together is the most reasonable and timely way to get things done in a democracy? Hillary’s jingoistic rejoinder to Trump’s jingoistic ‘Make America great again’ campaign slogan is, at least, a starting point: “America never stopped being great. We have to make America whole.” Or at least as whole as is relatively possible in a country divided against itself.

     

     
    • carmen 5:57 am on March 5, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      We shake our heads in disbelief every time we see another tRumpinanigan on the news – but then again, we’ve been incredulous for awhile now.
      Great post, mistermuse! It’s cold here in the frozen north but the sap is running!

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 8:23 am on March 5, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      There has been so much said and written of Trump that I was concerned this post would seem like overkill, but Trump is far from dead in the GOP horse race, so, as long as “the sap is running,” I decided to throw in my two cents worth.

      Like

    • linnetmoss 9:39 am on March 5, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I think it will be Donald vs. Hillary. I just hope she actually wins. The alternative is terrifying.

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 10:28 am on March 5, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      If Ohio governor John Kasich can win his home state on March 15, that could end up denying Trump the number of delegates he needs to eventually cinch the GOP nomination, leading to a brokered convention in Cleveland with Kasich having a chance to come out on top. I do think he is the most broadly acceptable of the remaining GOP contenders, but he probably lost some respect among independents because of this:
      http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2016/03/the-40-seconds-john-kasich-will-think-about-for-the-rest-of-his-life/472341/

      Like

    • arekhill1 1:26 pm on March 5, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Republicans have carefully massaged the egos of America’s idiots for the last fifty years, Sr. Muse, because that was the only way they could win elections. Now that the OFB has gotten out in front of them, they are merely reaping what they sowed.

      Like

      • mistermuse 5:22 pm on March 5, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Kathleen Parker, the moderate conservative whose column I quoted in my post, said in the same column that John McCain’s choice of Sarah Palin as his VP running mate in 2008 “foretold a dumbing down of the GOP that eight years later may prove irreversible.” Whether it’s been eight or fifty years, Republicans are indeed reaping what they’ve sowed.

        Liked by 2 people

        • Mél@nie 1:49 am on March 9, 2016 Permalink

          holy, Molly!!! THE Sarah Palin choice… she used to wave to Putin from her patio and to hunt in helicopter!!! long story, short: she hasn’t invented hot water or the butter slicing thread!!!(French expression translated mot-à-mot…) 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

    • Don Frankel 3:32 pm on March 5, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I see after your article there is an advertisement for some heart medication. Is this a subliminal message that we’ll need it?

      I don’t get too excited over Presidential candidates or Presidents. It doesn’t end well for any of them. But that doesn’t discourage a new batch every four years. Kind of amazing if you stop to think about it.

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 5:48 pm on March 5, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I don’t know about heart medication, Don, but after Lucy Lou wins the election, the White House is going to need a four to eight year supply of dog food.

      As for getting too excited, these every-four-year spectacles make great theatre (if nothing else), but this latest re-staging combines drama, comedy and farce like never before (and could turn into a tragedy if Trump is actually elected).

      Like

    • BroadBlogs 7:49 pm on March 6, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Great title! And I love Colbert’s video.

      Must admit that I’m kind of hoping Trump will get the nomination for the same reason you are — although I’m a bit scared since in 1980 the Democrats thought no one would vote for Ronald Reagan.

      If Mitt Romney’s plan were to go into effect, and they chose someone other than Donald Trump, that could alienate a lot of voters. (Yay, Hillary!)

      Their best hope is convincing Republicans that the Donald is a con artist. Still, where would Trump voters go? They’re starting to smarten up — see that the establishment isn’t for their interests.

      Could be a good year for Hillary.

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 10:31 pm on March 6, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      This could play out in a number of different ways. If Trump doesn’t win Ohio and Florida, it will probably go to a brokered convention in which most of the Republican “establishment” will go all out to convince delegates to nominate someone other than Trump. As for the Dems, Hillary’s nomination seems assured, barring a bombshell revelation emerging from the investigation of her emails. Time will tell.

      Like

    • RMW 2:07 pm on March 7, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Bring back the monarchy!

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 3:42 pm on March 7, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Like they say, be careful what you wish for. If Trump (or even Cruz) becomes Pres, a monarchy is likely to be very close to what you’ll get.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Mél@nie 1:54 am on March 9, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Monsieur Colbert is sooo smart, cultured, intelligent, wise… oh, yeah, I do recall the mm=moron mormon… 🙂 btw, I also visited Salt Lake City a few years ago: you have to see it, to believe it…
      https://myvirtualplayground.wordpress.com/2014/07/02/salt-lake-city-utah-mormon-vatican/

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 7:12 am on March 9, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I knew some of what you wrote about Mormonism, but not all – thanks for the link to your post.
      As for Sarah Palin (mentioned in your earlier comment), John McCain will never admit it, but I’m sure he realizes that he made the stupidest mistake of his life when he chose her as his VP running mate eight years ago.

      Liked by 1 person

    • literaryeyes 12:26 pm on March 9, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      It looks to me like Trump will win Ohio and Florida. Hillary’s losses in Colorado and Michigan are a wake-up call for those of us who don’t want Trump to win. Right now, I think he would. Unfortunately, a lot of people still like the “strong man” (think of Russia and Israel). This is also a setback for the Conservatives who’ve been pushing an ideology all these years. They let the vitriol flow, hoping it would sweep them into power, and now they’re being swept away by the same vitriol!

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 1:52 pm on March 9, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I think you’re right about Florida, but there’s still hope for Kasich in Ohio, where he has been a pretty popular governor. He’s close behind Trump in Ohio polls and seems to be gaining ground, but if Trump wins, his path to the nomination gets a lot easier.
      Frankly, between Trump and Cruz, the fundamentalist Conservative, I see little to choose (in terms of who would be worse for the good of this country).

      Like

    • JosieHolford 8:23 pm on February 18, 2020 Permalink | Reply

      Wondering how you feel about this post now a few years on. Don’t know about you but my views have “evolved” – meaning new horrors about tRump emerge making things even more crystal clear. The fact that we now have two unacceptable extremes – Sanders and Bloomberg – vying to be the Democratic nominee when so many terrific candidates are/ have been shoved aside – Booker, Castro, Harris Warren – is borderline tragic.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 9:26 pm on February 18, 2020 Permalink | Reply

        Well, I was certainly wrong (as were many others) in believing that Trump “would lose big to Hillary.” But I wasn’t wrong about Trump — if anything, I underestimated what a sick human being he is.

        As for Sanders and Bloomberg: Bernie is too much of a demagogue for my taste, but — “taste” aside — there’s no way a self-proclaimed socialist will carry the swing states the Dems need to beat Trump. I have mixed feelings about Bloomberg. I don’t fault him for spending billions of his own money on his campaign. Does anyone truly believe that if any other candidates had his money, they wouldn’t spend it in the same manner? I know I would! Beyond that, I need to believe he’s sincere in regretting his “stop and frisk” policy as NYC mayor and past statements he has made which appear racist, so I’ll be watching him in tomorrow night’s debate to get a better feel for the man.

        Like

  • mistermuse 12:01 am on February 24, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Christopher Marlowe, , , , , Patrick Henry, , , , , , , ,   

    MISTER MUSE AND MISS QUOTES 

    I have made it a rule that whenever I say something stupid, I immediately attribute it to Dr. Johnson, Marcus Aurelius or Dorothy Parker. –George Mikes, British author

    • * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

    Fellow and female Americans: In case you’re not old enough — as I am — to remember the Father of our Country, George Birthington’s washday was February 22nd. OK, I admit that after all these years, I may have a hard time recalling names and certain words correctly, but what does it matter? As Christopher Shakespeare (or was it William Marlowe) famously wrote, a ruse by any other name would smell anyway.

    Anyway, my point is that quotes may frequently get mis-attributed, but Miss Attributed couldn’t care less, so why should we? Well, I’ll tell you why — because we’re righters, that’s why, and we righters deserve credit where credit is dubious. Therefore, with the aid of my busty — I mean, trusty — aide, Miss Quotes, the objective here was to do an extensive investigation into the subjective and dig up our quota of misquotes (our quota being whenever we decided to quit) . You are now about to be the beneficiary of our research, which we bent over backwards to have ready for this post (just to make it a bit more fun, I’ll throw in a few correctly-attributed quotes; can you pick them out of the pack?):

    1. “I cannot tell a lie.” –George Washington
    2. “Give me liberty, or give me death.”  –Patrick Henry  
    3. “The British are brave people. They can face anything except reality.” –George Mikes
    4. “Anybody who hates dogs and children can’t be all bad.” –W.C. Fields
    5. “Our comedies are not to be laughed at.” –Samuel Goldwyn
    6. “I never said most of the things I said.” –Yogi Berra
    7. “Let them eat cake.” –Marie-Antoinette
    8. “There are three kinds of lies: lies, damn lies, and statistics.” –Mark Twain
    9. “Elementary, my dear Watson.” –Sherlock Holmes (in the stories of A. Conan Doyle)
    10. “I am the greatest!” –The Donald

    Here are the misattributions:

    1. The quote itself is a lie. An Anglican minister, Mason Locke, ascribed it to our first President in his pietistic biography of Washington as part of the made-up ‘Who chopped down the cherry tree’ story: “I can’t tell a lie, Pa; I did cut it with my hatchet.”
    2. Possibly another biographical fiction, though not as clear-cut as the cherry tree story. Biographer Wm. Wirt based his attribution on the memory of two Henry contemporaries. The phrase resembles a passage from CATO, a 1713 play written by Joseph Addison.
    4. Actually said by humor writer Leo Rosten in introducing Fields at a dinner.
    5. An old Hollywood gag, not said (at least originally) by Goldwyn.
    7. By all accounts, Marie-Antoinette never uttered those words. Several years before she supposedly said them, they appeared in Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s THE CONFESSIONS.
    8. Although Twain used this quote in his autobiography, he credited it to Benjamin Disraeli.
    9. Doyle never put those words in the great detective’s mouth in any of his four novels and 56 short stories about Holmes between 1887-1927.  It was actor Basil Rathbone, playing Holmes in the late 1930s-1940s, who spoke those words and made them famous.
    10. Donald Trump may think it, but it was Muhammad Ali who said it.

    As a bonus, I leave you with this quote:

     

     

     

     
    • mistermuse 12:04 am on February 24, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      NOTE: By virtue of February having less than 30 days (even in this year of the leap), my post-every-fifth-day schedule is doomed to run into “the best laid plans of mice and men” by the end of the month. Thus, my last Feb. post will be on the 29th, and I’ve opted to move this post up to Feb. 24.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Joseph Nebus 1:37 am on February 24, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Coincidentally, the old Roman calendar treated the 24th as the leap day. That is, in a leap year, they had two days that were both what we’d call the 24th of February. This sounds confusing, but it’s honestly better than what they had before, which was to in some years stick a whole extra month in between the 24th and 25th of February.

        Anyway, point being, having a post on the 24th so that you have a post timed for Leap Day works nicely. Somehow.

        Liked by 2 people

    • Don Frankel 8:56 am on February 24, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I knew that was Ali at the end there as I’m not only old enough to remember but I know Trump said. “It’s huge.” Which is now being pronounced as Yyyyuge. But it might get miss quoted or I might be miss quoting as Bernie Sanders also says Yyyuge as does Larry David and well most of us here in New York City.

      My favorite miss quote is General Sherman’s. “War is all hell.” He didn’t say it but when he found out he said it, he kept saying it, till he said it.

      Liked by 1 person

    • arekhill1 10:44 am on February 24, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      “When in trouble, when in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout.” That’s my favorite quote. Google can’t really tell us its origin, although some people attribute it to the neo-Nazi science fiction author Robert Heinlein.

      Liked by 2 people

    • mistermuse 11:25 am on February 24, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Don, when Trump said “It’s huge,” I thought he was referring to his ego (or the unbelievable gullibility of his followers).
      Good comment about Sherman. He certainly turned Atlanta into hell when he burned it.

      Liked by 3 people

    • mistermuse 11:33 am on February 24, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I like the quote, Ricardo….though I must admit I haven’t heard it before and don’t know who said it. It couldn’t have been The Donald, because he’s never in doubt about anything (& wouldn’t admit it if he was).

      Liked by 2 people

    • Mél@nie 11:08 am on February 27, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      over here, in “old Europe”, we just can’t imagine the fair-wigged ignorant racist as the POTUS!!! same for ted cruz(doesn’t deserve capitals!!!)

      • * *

      oh, it seems that Marie-Antoinette never stated that sentence… it’s been invented, as the French people didn’t like “the snobbish Austrian waster”… 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

    • tomorrowdefinitely 1:51 pm on March 4, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Nice one! I especially like the quote at the top 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

    • Mark Scheel 12:40 am on June 16, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      mistermuse,
      Now that was educational. I knew only a few for certain. Makes you wonder if anybody ever really says anything! Ha.

      Mark

      Liked by 2 people

    • mistermuse 7:20 am on June 16, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Mark, all my posts are educational — even those expose that, unlike quote #10, I’m not the greatest (just the 3rd greatest, behind The Donald and Muhammad Ali). 😦 😦 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • dbmoviesblog 12:16 pm on August 25, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      Thought-provoking post. The number nine made me smile because most people will swear they read it in the novel haha. I kinda always hoped that people know that the quote “There are three kinds of lies: lies, damn lies, and statistics” belongs to Disraeli, and I also know that there are so many things that Marie-Antoinette allegedly said which are not just not true. The whole French Revolution seems to have a bunch of slogans and quotes which were simply made up afterwards to heighten the effect.

      Liked by 1 person

  • mistermuse 12:00 am on February 20, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , dogmatism, fanatics, , holy wars, human history, Middle East, Quakers, , secular humanists, tribalism, tribes, ,   

    TRIBES AND TRIBULATIONS 

    tribal, adj. Of the nature of, or relating to, a tribe.
    tribe, n. 1. A unit of sociopolitical organization. 2. A political, ethnic, or ancestral division of ancient states and cultures [such as] a. the three divisions of the ancient Romans. b. the 12 divisions of ancient Israel.
    –Webster’s New College Dictionary

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    If anything seems clear from the seemingly endless wars in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria, it is that tribalism and religion are at the heart of the madness. This is not to suggest that tribalism is confined to the Middle East (far from it), or that other forces haven’t played a part. But buried beneath the overlay of foreign intervention in the region (or meddling, if you prefer) are roots with a “history as old or nearly so as that of humanity itself” –Edward O. Wilson, biologist, naturalist and two-time Pulitzer Prize winner.

    In his book THE MEANING OF HUMAN EXISTENCE, Wilson posits that tribalism and religion are inextricably bound together by what he calls “the instinctual force of tribalism in the genesis of religiosity. People deeply need membership in a group, whether religious or secular.” In a chapter titled simply “RELIGION,” Wilson states:

    The great religions are inspired by belief in an incorruptible deity–or multiple deities. Their priests bring solemnity to rites of passage through the cycle of life and death. They sacralize basic tenets of civil and moral law, comfort the afflicted, and take care of the desperately poor. Followers strive to be righteous in the sight of man and God. The churches are centers of community life [and] ultimate refuges against the inequities and tragedies of secular life. They and their ministers make more bearable tyranny, war, starvation, and the worst of natural catastrophes.
    The great religions are also, and tragically, sources of ceaseless and unnecessary suffering. They are impediments to the grasp of reality needed to solve most social problems in the real world. Their exquisitely human flaw is tribalism. It is tribalism, not the moral tenets and humanitarian thought of pure religion, that makes good people do bad things.
    Unfortunately, a religious group defines itself foremost by its creation myths, the supernatural narrative that explains how humans came into existence. This story is also the heart of tribalism. No matter how subtly explained, the core belief assures its members that God favors them above all others. It teaches that members of other religions worship the wrong gods, use wrong rituals, follow false prophets….

    Food for thought — but thought that leaves questions to chew on: if “love makes fools of us all” (to quote Thackeray), does it follow that tribalism makes blind fools of us all? Are we unwitting tribalists to the siren song of political/religious saviors, some of us to the extent of becoming tribal or religious fanatics? Are tribal/religious fanatics born or made (nature vs. nurture)? And, given that all religions are invented by man, does that entitle Wilson to tar them all with the same brush?

    For example, Wilson regards it as a mistake to fold believers of particular religious and dogmatic ideologies into two piles (moderate versus extremist), because “The true cause of hatred and violence is faith versus faith, an outward expression of the ancient instinct of tribalism.”  While that may be true, I question the notion that all religions/tribes wash out equally. For example, in pre-colonial times in North America, there were both peaceful and warlike Native American tribes. And so it is elsewhere. Aren’t secular humanists equally guilty of bad faith who don’t recognize/won’t separate the wheat from the chaff/laissez-faire from doctrinaire? Who and what have incited and fed religious wars and persecutions throughout history? It’s not the likes of the Quakers, nor is it directives from the heavens.

    The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves.

     

     

     

     

     
    • Midwestern Plant Girl 8:33 am on February 20, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      This was a great read!
      I play my drum to a different beat and prefer to not be part of a group or religious. I like to read about these topics tho, as I want to understand it. I don’t feel left out, but sometimes don’t understand why people do things. Maybe it’s my O- blood? 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 9:09 am on February 20, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Thank you. I concur, but though I don’t seek to be part of a group, there is one group I can’t help belonging to: the human race. In that sense, we’re all in this together, which is why all the ongoing political and religious extreme dogmatism is a plague on all our houses.

        Liked by 2 people

    • arekhill1 1:49 pm on February 20, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Well put, Sr. Muse, and undoubtedly true. I’m an agnostic myself, thank God.

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 2:45 pm on February 20, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Growing up Catholic put the fear of the Lord in me, Ricardo, so I’m still too chicken to be an agnostic. Some people may think I’m an egghead, so perhaps I’m now an egg-nostic. At least that would solve an age-old question: the chicken came before the egg-nostic.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Todd Duffey Writes on Things 10:06 am on February 21, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      This is the first blog of yours I’ve read, Mistermuse. I feel like there is a LOT more I will be learning from you! Bravo – you have opened this reader’s eyes to a much broader playing field!

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 1:35 pm on February 21, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Thanks. I usually write in a more creative, humorous vein, but my art-ery takes a serious turn every once in a while. I only post every fifth day, so your eyes shouldn’t get bloodshot from over-learning! 🙂

        Thanks again.

        Like

    • Don Frankel 10:50 am on February 21, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Good stuff Muse. A little heavy but sometimes we have to do heavy. I haven’t read Wilson so I wouldn’t want to characterize his stuff but if his basic premise is to blame it on Tribalism well it sort of a non-starter for me. It doesn’t matter what the Tribe says or the Government says or even and this may be heresy but even what the Supreme Court says. You make your decisions in this life and then you have to live with them.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 1:46 pm on February 21, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        You make a good point, Don. We tend to think of tribalism as something uncivilized, something they do “over there” — but all you have to do is look at our own politics to see mindless tribal followings (albeit with a modern veneer).

        Liked by 1 person

    • John Looker 2:12 pm on February 22, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I have a great deal of sympathy with your analysis. Tribalism does appear deep rooted in the human condition — perhaps it is inescapable until societies can find ways of evolving appropriate forms of government. I found myself writing a group of poems on tribal loyalties a year ago. They might not interest you but, just in case, they can be found on my own (poetry) blog at: https://johnstevensjs.wordpress.com/category/looking-at-life-through-work-series/tribal-loyalties/ They also had a place in a book of mine published a year ago, but that’s another story. Congratulations on raising this in a thoughtful way.

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 4:01 pm on February 22, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I appreciate your comment and like your tribal poems, especially THE DAWN RAID. I tend to think that the perversion of tribalism (mindless, dogmatic allegiance to its worst forms), more than tribalism itself, is the main problem….and one (skeptic that I am) that I believe will probably always be with us.

      Like

    • John Looker 5:53 pm on February 22, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Yes. In any society there is going to be a reassuring sense of belonging to a familiar homogeneous group, but it is dangerous (or perverted as you put it) when there is no imagination about or empathy towards others. Such a pressing issue for our times! Glad you’ve raised it in the manner you do.

      Liked by 1 person

    • linnetmoss 6:29 am on February 23, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Religion is like science–not evil or good in itself, but depending on the use we make of it. (Although Christopher Hitchens made a pretty comprehensive case against it in “God is not Great.”) IMO science has relieved much more suffering than religion ever did. (And of course has caused its share.) As to tribalism, I don’t see much benefit in it.

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 7:11 am on February 23, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Thank you for more “food for thought.”

      I suppose, given that “People deeply need membership in a group, whether religious or secular” (as Edward O. Wilson wrote), one could say the same of tribalism–“not good or evil in itself,” but depending on the ends pursued (and the means used to pursue them). Another thought: how widely or loosely to define, or think of, tribalism. In a sense, fraternities, sororities, sports teams — such as the Cleveland Indians 🙂 — any group banded together for common cause, could be considered tribes.

      I own Hitchens’ GOD IS NOT GREAT, but haven’t read it in a long time — though I’m familiar with his arguments in general. It’s too complex to get into here, but I’ve written a few posts on these things before and will probably do so again.

      Like

    • literaryeyes 1:39 pm on February 23, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      H.L. Mencken ripped apart the basic foundations of religion in his book, Twilight of the Gods (I think that’s the title, or maybe that’s a movie-I plead senior memory). Religion started early when tribes were the social construct, so it’s plausible they are inextricably and at this time, irrevocably, intermixed. But to put a little humor in, here’s a quote purportedly from Mencken: “For centuries, theologians have been explaining the unknowable in terms of the-not-worth-knowing.” In other words, the improbable, in his opinion. I’m not as pragmatic as Mencken, by far, and believe we have an inherent spiritual nature that’s connected to our physical selves, and possibly to something outside ourselves.

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 4:30 pm on February 23, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Well said. Neither the god(s) of religion, nor the concept of creation without a creator, is convincing to me. To quote from WHY DOES THE WORLD EXIST (by Jim Holt):
      “A scientific explanation must involve some sort of physical cause. But any physical cause is by definition part of the universe to be explained. Thus any purely scientific explanation of the existence of the universe is doomed to be circular. Even if it starts with something very minimal–a cosmic egg, a tiny bit of quantum vacuum, a singularity-it still starts with something, not nothing.”

      Like

    • restlessjo 3:05 am on February 24, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Sadly, I don’t have an argument. I simply wish it were otherwise, but wishing will never make it so.

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 5:03 am on February 24, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      The good news is that with a creator, there remains the possibility of life after death for us. The bad news is that with a creator so above all the suffering it has deliberately made the lot of its creatures, what would that bode for our next-life relationship with such a creator? Sadly (to say the least), it’s enough to make thinking people careful what they wish for.
      But, for now, I wish for the best for you and everyone reading this.

      Like

  • mistermuse 12:01 am on January 25, 2016 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: attitude, , , coping, drudgery, early retirement, human relations, , , jobs, lost souls, unemployment benefits,   

    TAKE THIS JOB AND CAN IT! 

    And to think that you can turn on the television any hour of any day and find a politician railing against the outsourcing of these manufacturing jobs, as if this is any great loss at all. The outsourcing hasn’t gone nearly far enough if you ask me; we should be outsourcing these factories to the ninth circle of hell, outsourcing them into oblivion! It’s not work fit for a human being….  —Franklin Schneider

    * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

    If you think my last post featured jobs that stink — stink again. Franklin Schneider, author of CANNED (subtitled How I Lost Ten Jobs in Ten Years and Learned to Love Unemployment) has held every type of job — briefly. He’s detasseled corn in Iowa, served time at a doomed Internet start-up, and for one shining moment became the “Most Successful Telemarketer in America.” But his search for a fairly compensated, fulfilling position free of pointless drudgery taught him one thing: Such a job does not exist. And if it did, his boss would  probably be an a**hole [quoted from back cover].

    CANNED is a book with an attitude you’ll probably either loathe or relate to. As I read it, I found myself doing a bit of both, because, although Schneider tells it like he sees it, I was left feeling — well, more or less like a combination of these reviews/reviewers:

    “For the majority of you reading Canned, a feeling of contempt will wash over you toward the writer for exemplifying the worst in Americans. Others will read these words and show some form of remorse for the author and his ill-conceived notions as to what he is ‘entitled’ [collecting unemployment benefits while deliberately ducking work]. In either respect, I am sure that every one who is not a Marxist can agree, Franklin Schneider is the type of person this country can do without.” –Charles Signorile

    “[It’s] a caustic celebration of the loser life, a ranting jeremiad against the working world and all its slavish pieties. It’s like watching Thoreau hand out tokens at the mall arcade, Melville grind his teeth in an Aeron chair at a media portal startup, or Bukowski lose his mind in an MCI telemarketing carrel: a twisted kind of fun.” –Tom Lutz

    “Franklin Schneider’s writing is smart, energetic, funny, illuminating, outrageous, painful (in the best possible way), quirky, distinctive and wildly entertaining.” –Josh Emmons

    *** * * * * * * * * ** * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * ** * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * ***

    I view CANNED in the broader context of a roiling world of differing individuals, groups and classes who can’t put themselves in the other guy’s place, unable (or averse) to consider there may be a happier way to run a steamboat. The late comedienne Joan Rivers put it like this: “Can we talk?” The answer: Apparently not really (unless by “talk,” is meant moving our lips and making sounds). No wonder many of us just don’t “get it.” Sometimes it seems that only kids make allowances.

    Like fellow lost-soul Schneider, I didn’t know what I wanted to do when I was young. Unlike him, I wound up falling into a thirty year career with one company while I “found myself.” It was a career in which I take neither great pride nor lasting prejudice (in other words, I worked to live, not lived to work), from which I was able to retire early and end up doing what I came to want to do. Was it worth putting up with all the “slavish pieties” one must observe along the way? Given the cards we’re dealt, I never felt as if I had a choice.

    It’s easy to envy those who have the good fortune to earn a living doing what they love to do, but even some of them go off the deep end, unable to cope. For the everyone else of us, Franklin Schneider cites this quote: This is how the hero of our time must be. He will be characterized either by decisive inaction, or else by futile activity.* Perhaps so. In any case, I rest his case.

    *from A Hero of Our Time, by Mikhail Lermontov

    P.S. And what was it “I came to want to do?” Well, since you asked:

    http://www.gocomics.com/pearlsbeforeswine/2016/01/24

     

     
    • Midwestern Plant Girl 6:53 am on January 25, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I may have to read this book! I work to live right now, but would love to live for work. .. with the right job. I have never been on unemployment b4, but wouldn’t be ashamed to be now. I want to take classes to change careers, but have no time to go while working! Catch 22. 😯
      I need to change the way I feel about responsibility… why feel guilty about changing jobs when this is my life and I have only a short time to enjoy it!

      Liked by 2 people

    • Don Frankel 9:01 am on January 25, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      My 25 year career as a Civil Servant was at times exhilarating, challenging, boring, annoying, stressful, boring, fun and did I say boring? But it was, well, life.

      The best thing is to own your own business which I got to do as well. Now, I follow my passion.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 10:33 am on January 25, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        As the pig said in the PEARLS BEFORE SWINE comic strip, “BEING LAZY IS NOT A PASSION!” (Just kidding, Don — I couldn’t resist!) 🙂

        Like

    • arekhill1 10:36 am on January 25, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Still working here. Never been on unemployment, disability or workman’s comp in my life. Find time to write, too, in addition to carving out time to sit on the couch and drink beer. How does it all get done? Saving time by skipping personal pronouns helps.

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 11:09 am on January 25, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Couldn’t have said it better myself.

      Like

    • literaryeyes 12:06 pm on January 25, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      This is a subject we don’t want to talk about, but many people are stuck in drudgery, and even worse, what they do has no lasting positive value. Most know it, but it’s easier to say, I’m doing it for my family, and I’ll “live” outside work. I love that you quoted Lermontov’s A Hero of our Time (some say a precursor to The Stranger); he was WAY ahead of his time. Worthwhile occupation may not bring you the same monetary compensation, but what is your sanity worth? I made little money doing what I believed was helpful to others, and in the process have a wealth of experience (if I modestly may say so!).

      Liked by 1 person

    • Michaeline Montezinos 12:16 pm on January 25, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Worked and or went to school from the age of 6. Schooling is work where you can only learn what your professor teaches. Finally had time to sit on the couch with my fourth daughter and loved every messy minute spent having babies and watching them grow. Not sure if marriage falls into any one of these categories . Maybe it has a passionate beginning and then the work begins. But it is a career you must want to pursue without selfishness and with devotion to responsibility. So I finally married the man who inspires me to do both.

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 1:05 pm on January 25, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I can think of no job more important than being a stay-at-home mom (or dad, for that matter), but of course, that depends on the family financial situation and requirements (which shouldn’t put acquiring luxuries ahead of giving one’s kids the love, time and attention they need).

      Like

    • Todd Duffey Writes on Things 6:21 pm on January 25, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Hear hear! I’ve been an actor in cult films and TV shows, and yet I’ve also been on the government teat. If you’ve ever found something you absolutely love to do, nothing else will bring you the satisfaction of that thing. To those who haven’t found it, the point is moot. To those who have, they tax us for just such the occasion that, should we need it, it is there. Not to live off of. Simply to get us to the next opportunity.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 9:34 pm on January 25, 2016 Permalink | Reply

        Wouldn’t it be heaven if everyone could earn a living doing what they love to do, whether it be digging ditches, writing the Great American or Great Armenian Novel, or sitting on the couch drinking beer (preferably craft beer). With all the promises politicians make, I don’t know why no candidate has promised that.

        Liked by 1 person

    • moorezart 6:27 pm on January 25, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      Reblogged this on From 1 Blogger 2 Another.

      Liked by 1 person

  • mistermuse 12:16 am on December 24, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , Muppet Christmas Carol, ,   

    FAVORITE CHRISTMAS LINES FROM SONG & FILM 

    I hear that Dec. 25 is Christmas, so I’m departing from my every-five-days schedule to post a day early. For this post, I thought I’d make a little game out of several of my favorite Christmas lines from song and film. It’s simple enough: below are the lines; you name the song or film from whence they came. If you’ve been good, attentive little girls and boys, you should get all of them right; otherwise, I’ll tell Santa you’ve been naughty. However, if you’re a big, grown-up girl, I’ll let him know — ere he shows up down your chimney tonight bearing gifts — that you plan to behave yourself (unless you have other ideas).

     1. He’s making a list. Checking it twice. Gonna find out who’s naughty or nice.

    2. Christmas Eve’ll find me where the love light gleams. [SONG TITLE] if only in my dreams.

    3. SCROOGE: “Let us deal with the eviction notices for tomorrow, Mr. Cratchit.”
    KERMIT: “Uh, tomorrow’s Christmas, Sir.”
    SCROOGE: “Very well. You may gift wrap them.”

    4. You can’t fool me – there ain’t no Sanity Clause.

    5. Although it’s been said, many times, many ways….Merry Christmas to you.

    Now for the answers:

    1. SANTA CLAUS IS COMING TO TOWN  (song)

    2. I’LL BE HOME FOR CHRISTMAS  (song)

    3. THE MUPPET CHRISTMAS CAROL (film)

    4.
    Chico Marx to Groucho in A NIGHT AT THE OPERA

    5. THE CHRISTMAS SONG

    You say you answered them all correctly, and you want to know what you get? BAH HUMBUG, that’s what! Nonetheless….

     

     
    • ladysighs 5:59 am on December 24, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Three out of five……ain’t bad. Merry Christmas! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • carmen 7:02 am on December 24, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Always learn something from your blog posts! Merry Christmas to you AND ladysighs! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 7:29 am on December 24, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Thank you, girls, and Merry Christmas to two of my favorite ladies (WordPress ladies, that is – I wouldn’t want to give the impression that I have a harem). 🙂 🙂

      Like

      • carmen 7:29 am on December 24, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        Whyever NOT?? 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        • mistermuse 8:13 am on December 24, 2015 Permalink

          Caremn, you got me there – after all, I am very broad minded (I don’t mean to ignore you guys, but it’s a lot more fun to tease broads – I mean, lovely ladies).

          Liked by 1 person

    • arekhill1 11:12 am on December 24, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Ho, ho, ho to all, and to all a good night, or day.

      Like

    • Don Frankel 4:01 pm on December 24, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I got 4 out of 5. I could have lied and said I got them all but then Richard the IVth, set the standard when he admitted to not getting a single one right on my quiz.

      Like

    • Don Frankel 4:09 pm on December 24, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Ooops I almost forgot. Merry Christmas Muse.

      Like

    • mistermuse 5:26 pm on December 24, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      You got 4 out of 5? Now you got me wondering which one you missed. I KNOW it wasn’t #4, and I don’t think it was #1, 2 or 3, so I’m guessing #5. In any case, Don, I echo Merry Christmas to you (although it’s been said many times, many ways).

      Like

    • Leyla 2:36 pm on December 25, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Merry Christmas 🙂

      Like

    • mistermuse 3:06 pm on December 25, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Thank you, Leyla. May you picture dandelions as flowers, and may your dreams flower all the days of your life.

      Like

  • mistermuse 12:00 am on November 30, 2015 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , lawyers, , November 30, , , punning, , , ,   

    30 NOVEMBER — TO THE SWIFT 

    As 3o days hath the month of November,
    Today marks the end of a month to remember.
    Swift doth the day pass into December,
    Ere the twain shall meet….in a glowing ember.

    The above is my Lilliputian ode to two literary giants who were born on this day: Jonathan Swift  in 1667, Mark Twain in 1835. This post celebrates the former, the latter having been extolled in a post one year ago today (THE UNIVERSAL MARK TWAIN).

    Jonathan Swift’s pièce de résistance, of course, was GULLIVER’S TRAVELS, a book I gobbled up when about 12 years old (in an abridged version for children), and still own. However, at that age I didn’t fully appreciate that it was much more than a grand adventure tale — it’s also a masterpiece of parody and social/political satire, as exemplified by the enmity between the empires of Lilliput and Blefuscu over which end of an egg should be broken first before being eaten — a conflict which put Gulliver in the middle between the Big Endians and the Small Endians. Well, I suppose that makes just as much sense as real people fighting over whose god is the Big Enchilada.

    Let us turn now to three quotations from the unabridged GULLIVER’S TRAVELS:

    Here commences a new dominion acquired with a title by divine right. Ships are sent with the first opportunity; the natives driven out or destroyed; their princes tortured to discover their gold; a free license give to all acts of inhumanity and lust, the earth reeking with the blood of its inhabitants: and this execrable crew of butchers, employed in so pious an expedition, is a modern colony, sent to convert an idolatrous and barbarous people.

    The tiny Lilliputians surmise that Gulliver’s watch may be his god, because it is that which, he admits, he seldom does anything without consulting.

    It is a maxim among these lawyers, that whatever hath been done before may legally be done again: and therefore they take special care to record all the decisions formerly made against common justice and the general reason of mankind. These, under the name of precedents, they produce as authorities, to justify the most iniquitous opinions; and the judges never fail of decreeing accordingly.

    I close with three more Swift quotes, the last of which I intend to inscribe on a club to beat anyone who would disparage my stunning cunning punning:

    When the world has once begun to use us ill, it afterwards continues the same treatment with less scruple or ceremony, as men do to a whore.

    Words are the clothing of our thoughts.

    Punning is a talent which no man affects to despise except he that is without it.

     

    –30–

     

     
    • linnetmoss 7:26 am on November 30, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      If only there were more authors with the wit of these two! Love the quote about punning 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • mistermuse 1:34 pm on November 30, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        Both seem to have had much in common as to how they viewed their fellow man, though I gather Swift was regarded as even more of a misanthrope than Twain. In any case, is there really much difference between a realist and a misanthrope, other than a matter of degree? 😦 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

    • Don Frankel 7:59 am on November 30, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      People are ambitious. They come up with rationales as they go or afterwards.

      Like

      • mistermuse 1:47 pm on November 30, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        Right you are, Don — though I wouldn’t confine coming up with rationales just to the ambitious. For example, I have no problem coming up with rationales for being a couch potato on Sundays, because, as I tell my wife, watching football keeps me out of trouble.

        Like

    • arekhill1 10:23 am on November 30, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Substitute “women” for “eggs” and the passions of the Small Endians regarding the Big Endians become more understandable. Is this what Swift really meant?

      Like

      • mistermuse 2:13 pm on November 30, 2015 Permalink | Reply

        Well, given the Swift quote about how men treat a whore, it appears he was able to put himself in a woman’s place and see things from her viewpoint. He was, after all, a priest in the Church of Ireland (a branch of the Anglican Church), which afforded him somewhat more latitude (in theory) than if he’d been a Catholic priest.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Don Frankel 8:24 pm on November 30, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      You’re not a Psychopath Muse, who sees people as objects that just need to be swept out of the way on your way to wherever and whatever. Perhaps on the way to the greater good.

      Like

    • mistermuse 12:14 am on December 1, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      Don, I’m probably more of a muse-anthrope — but whatever I am….

      Like

    • Jane 12:54 am on December 1, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I also loved Gulliver’s Travels as a child (the abridged version). It was only much later in life I understood that there was more to it than a children’s story. I must admit I have never read the unabridged version so thank you for sharing some of it along with your thoughts. Just a comment on abridged versions. I read so many as a child and they were a great way to introduce me gently and enjoyably to many great authors and playwrights. Reading Shakespeare’s plays as a book of stories with pictures as a child was great preparation for being able to understand his works later.

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 7:57 am on December 1, 2015 Permalink | Reply

      I appreciate your comment. I didn’t appreciate Shakespeare until later because I wasn’t “properly” introduced to him as a child. But, as they say, all good things come to those who wait (if you live long enough, which, fortunately, I have).

      Like

    • Outlier Babe 10:50 am on February 7, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      I have read the unabridged version but see I must go back and not only do so again, but again annually or so. Will buy a copy. Hadn’t read “Travels” since college. Decades later, I’m slower–less swift 😉 –but more patient. That makes me smart enough now to read Swift properly.

      (Aspie ego-saving non-sequiter: I was always smart enough to read Twain properly.)

      I like your posts so far, Muse-Man. Maybe I’ll read some more some time. If I’ve got nothin’ better to do.

      –O. Babe

      Liked by 1 person

    • mistermuse 9:15 pm on February 7, 2016 Permalink | Reply

      That makes two of us, O. Babe, but I hope to read more of your posts sooner rather than….well, as soon as possible after researching, writing and editing my next post on Feb. 10 (I’m cursed with being something of a perfectionist, so it takes me a few days put it all together & get it – hopefully – right).

      Like

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