Old and In the Way
It seemed appropriate to pay attention. A full moon lights this New Year's Eve, by necessity, a blue moon. At fifty-two, I have the time and relative lack of commitments to pause a moment, or two, or more than several and pay attention. They happen, or so I am told, about every nineteen years or so, or perhaps it is exactly and I wasn't paying sufficient attention. Nineteen years would mean that I had missed two previous New Year's Eve Blue Moon events. One at about thirty-three when I was distracted by the demands of a young family and the other at fourteen, when I was just distracted or conversely far too self absorbed to notice much outside my own evolving turbulent self. One cannot say really if another nineteen years down the road I will be here, or sufficiently aware to notice. So, I wandered outside, into the cold, well, this is Southern California and cold is a relative issue, and stared for awhile. A lovely moon set in a clear cold cloudless sky. Assuredly bonus points are allocated in some karmic register for noticing the turning of these cosmic cycles and I wandered back inside.
This site is somewhat abandoned, in disuse it would appear. Perhaps they are too easy to make, or people, this generation of the commercial driven attention span, the thirty second sound bite, are too easily distracted by the next game, the next crisis, the next toy. In any event, the shell of this site is lying here disused, so it seems reasonable to co-opt it, at least for a little while. Like a hermit crab, to try on the fit and see if it suits. Sites like this are armor, camouflage, perfect anonymity. You can say what you like and only a select few, who likely care little or not at all, will know.
So, it has been an odd year. A year sufficiently odd that I hesitate in contemplation of what to wish for. Wishes get twisted. So, here's to the New Year, whatever it might come to be, and the opportunity to see it through.
psa (Dec '09)
Since when did we as a nation, as concerned citizens, as parents lose the capacity to judge babies having babies, to condemn teenagers having unprotected sex?
What will it do to every American mother's and father's ability to discourage their children from having sex before marriage and to insist, failing that, upon proper precautions not just against pregnancy but against deadly sexually transmitted diseases if we rollover to a wave of Republican permissiveness and install the bad example of Bristol and Levi in the White House?
Is it fair to Palin to hold her responsible for her daughter's mistakes?
Certainly not. It is horribly unfair.
But since when has the national interest become secondary to fairness to politicians?
Raoul (Sep '08)
Of course, both my real and nominal depression upon the mere mention of my impending 50th birthday are greatly, I would say, sufficiently dramatized. THE LATEST SENSATION: WEEKS IN THE MAKING! Indeed, Drama is how we slow things down, to give us time to think. OK, one of the ways. Nothing new here. Read Dickens, if you like, for all it matters. It's what we mean by "Culture" And its efficacy, whatever you've got in mind.... But my hesitation lies elsewhere. I have no answer to those other, earlier questions. How could it ever have been otherwise? [The Beatitudes F ObEING] => go ahead, the cliff is that-a-way >> Phat!...
Raoul (Jan '06)
Listening to the Rolling Stones' Sweet Virginia, from now so long ago, trying to remember Pre-Reagan America, but having difficulty. Afterall, we all grew up with the bastard as Governor, too. Sixteen years, all told. Nevertheless, in 1972, Nixon's ultimate demise was already a vague shiny dream, glowing brightly on the great land's horizon upon horizon. The bear still went over the mountains. Kent was a State...
Raoul (Jan '06)
It is not unknown to me how many men have had, and still have, the opinion that the affairs of the world are in such wise governed by fortune and by God that men with their wisdom cannot direct them and that no one can even help them; and because of this they would have us believe that it is not necessary to labour much in affairs, but to let chance govern them. This opinion has been more credited in our times because of the great changes in affairs which have been seen, and may still be seen, every day, beyond all human conjecture. Sometimes pondering over this, I am in some degree inclined to their opinion. Nevertheless, not to extinguish our free will, I hold it to be true that Fortune is the arbiter of one-half of our actions, but that she still leaves us to direct the other...
Raoul (Mar '05)
When I saw the flat, I knew that this would be the place where I would live for years to come. It just had a certain feel to it. The rooms were spacious and bright. The kitchen was quite large. It had a utility room and hookups for a washer and dryer. There was also a large fireplace in the living room which faced the back. There was a room in the middle of the flat that would work as a dark, quiet bedroom and two sunny, carpeted rooms in the front facing the street that could be used as space--for relaxing, reading, Yoga or some sort of fun yet to be determined. I decided I could afford it and I took it. I was retiring at age 44. I had a small house to sell in the East Bay and some investments. I had made a bundle in the...
tbone (Nov '03)
You know, for the past twenty-five years, I've always had a sense that American management was composed mostly of those from our parents' generation, but it now seems that today American management is composed of those from Gen-X. How was it possible, that we, the baby boom generation, the largest generation in American history, were cut loose from our fair share of controlling destiny?
mrbdawg (Nov '00)
Last night, I went, invited by the coolest young couple I know in San Diego,
to one of the city's most notorious dive clubs, The Casbah, to hear Steve Poltz
(a.k.a., The Rugburns, co-writer of the hit that launched Jewel's career, the
undisputed king of the 40 second answering machine song
, and, well, Steve Poltz)
do his solo, heavy Cathoholic drinking routine.
Raoul (Nov '00)
Whether or to what extent "The Jerry Springer Show" is in tune with America or America is being tuned by "The Jerry Springer Show," I'll leave for you to consider as I present this little, "real-life" carnival mirror from one of America's most telling of places, the California freeway.
Raoul (Jun '00)
I recent read an article quoting the late Herb Caen, my favorite San Francisco columnist. When asked his opinion of Southland, he replied, "I'd like to get to know Los Angeles, but I never can find it."
Unlike Herb, after much serious thought and extensive investigation I think I have found it--but I can't hold on to it.
Raoul (Oct '99)
Atisha, also known as Dipamkara Srijnana, was an Indian monk and scholar who arrived in Tibet around the year 1038. He's credited with reintroducing Mahayana Buddhist texts, practices, and ethical principles to a region where Buddhism had been largely reabsorbed and rendered almost unrecognizable by Tibet's indigenous Bon religion and numerous shamanistic cults.
Raoul (Oct '99)
This is what happens to the imagination when you grow up on Rocky & Bullwinkle & Friends and suddenly find yourself over 40.
Raoul (Sep '99)
America has a problem in happiness. We all want to be happy, all the time. And whenever we do feel happy, we're sooner or later unhappy that we're not happier still. "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness."
Raoul (Sep '99)
The book is The Travels of Lao Can
by Liu E (1857-1909). Lao Can
is "Mr. Derelict," and the book was written in 1905 when Liu E was feeling rather derelict himself, beginning what was to be the final down slide of his fourth and last career, as a kind of public works adviser on mines, railways and, especially dear to his heart, the annual flooding of the Yellow River. His first three career attempts, scholar, physician and businessman, hadn't turned out that well either.
Raoul (Sep '99)