The Land of Akbar; Post # 5 (Our Echoes of Previous Genius)

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An echo rang in my head. Two years prior I had discovered, in a volume of a certain pirated philosophical dictionary (which appeared to be a combination of the Oxford and Cambridge versions), a general explanation of an illusory planet identified as THE FIRST EARTH. At that moment, as I sat on a barstool in that Chateaugay tavern, I knew I had an opportunity which afforded me something more precious and demanding to research. I held in my hands an infinite systematic apportion of the previous planet’s history, with its infrastructure and its games, with the echoes of its traditions and a whisper of its languages, with its sovereigns and its rivers, with its natural resources and its Taurus and its Pisces representing the inverted cup, with its calculus and its funeral pyres, with its very own Материализм Томаса Гоббса, a theological and metaphysical thinker. And all of it uttered, reasoned, and with no pretentions or echoes.

Материализм Томаса Гоббса      AKA        Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679)

In the “Eleventh Volume” – of which I have recently been made aware — there are allusions to preceding and succeeding volumes. The fact is that up to now we have found nothing.

In vain Hemingway and I have upended the libraries of the two Americas and of Europe. Josh Crimmins – I have mentioned Josh before, he is the one who found a promising book in Utica – well, Josh was tired of these inferior investigative systems, and suggested that we should – as a team– undertake the task of reconstructing the many and weighty tomes that are lacking; starting from the beginning. He concluded that a generation of First Earthers should be sufficient.

This venturesome conclusion brought us back to the fundamental problem; “Who were the founders of The First Earth?” The plural was required, because a lone inventor – an Aquinas laboring his whole life away in a dark monastery cell– was prodigiously discounted. It was thought that this brave old world was the work of a secret society of people all working toward a common goal.

These previous echoes of our current thinkers akin to Galileo Galilei[1], Theodosius Grygorovych Dobzhansky[2], Nikola Tesla[3], Arthur Schopenhauer[4], Henry Charles Bukowski[5], Michael Faraday[6], and George Boole[7]  (as if such a concept could withstand temporal reasoning) apparently were directed by an obscure man of intellect. Our current individuals mastering these diverse schools are abundant. However, the geniuses of The First Earth must also have been capable of inventiveness and equally subordinating that inventiveness to a meticulous and organized plan. This plan appears so vast that the contribution of each man was infinitesimal. At first it was believed that The First Earth was a mere chaos, and foolish excess of the imagination; now it is known that it was the cosmos, and that the profound laws which govern things in their universe had been devised, at least tentatively.

[1] Galileo Galilei (15 February 1564 – 8 January 1642) was an Italian polymath. Galileo is a central figure in the transition from natural philosophy to modern science and in the transformation of the scientific Renaissance into a scientific revolution. Galileo’s championing of heliocentrism was controversial during his lifetime. [from Wikipedia]

[2] Theodosius Grygorovych Dobzhansky (January 25, 1900 – December 18, 1975) was a prominent Ukrainian-American geneticist and evolutionary biologist, and a central figure in the field of evolutionary biology for his work in shaping the modern synthesis. [from Wikipedia]

[3] Nikola Tesla (10 July 1856 – 7 January 1943) was a Serbian-American inventor, electrical engineer, mechanical engineer, physicist, and futurist who is best known for his contributions to the design of the modern alternating current (AC) electricity supply system. [from Wikipedia]

[4] Arthur Schopenhauer (22 February 1788 – 21 September 1860) was a German philosopher. He is best known for his 1818 work The World as Will and Representation (expanded in 1844), wherein he characterizes the phenomenal world as the product of a blind and insatiable metaphysical will. [from Wikipedia]

[5] Henry Charles Bukowski (August 16, 1920 – March 9, 1994) was a German-American poet, novelist, and short story writer. His writing was influenced by social, cultural, and economic ambience, ordinary lives of poor Americans, the act of writing, alcohol, relationships with women, and the drudgery of work. [from Wikipedia]

[6] Michael Faraday (22 September 1791 – 25 August 1867) was an English scientist/chemist who contributed to the study of electromagnetism and electrochemistry. His main discoveries include the principles underlying electromagnetic induction, diamagnetism and electrolysis. [from Wikipedia]

[7] George Boole (November 1815 – 8 December 1864) was a largely self-taught English mathematician, philosopher and logician, most of whose short career was spent as the first professor of mathematics at Queen’s College, Cork in Ireland. He worked in the fields of differential equations, algebraic logic, and is best known as the author of The Laws of Thought (1854) which contains Boolean algebra. Boolean logic is credited with laying the foundations for the information age. [from Wikipedia]

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The Land of Akbar; Post # 4 (Dr. Webb)

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I have a limited and waning memory, in a human form of artwork — charcoal on slab wood – that echoes an image of a Dr. W. Seward Webb; “Seward”, as he was known. He was the man who presided over the building of the Adirondack and St. Lawrence railway. This memorial is displayed in a saloon in Chateaugay, NY. It may have been either the “Hay House”, “The Halfway House” or “The Chateaugay Hotel.” (Memory does not serve me well these days.) The rendering rests above the bronze spittoons and brass rails that kept the inebriates’ elbows off the bar. This, my fellow humans, is the remainder of illusive depths and echoes that at one time had  joined together to make up a thriving town.

I asked Hemingway if he had ever visited Chateaugay which was located just north of the Adirondack Blue Line. He admitted that the farthest north he had ever been was Aiden Lair. I thought to myself that at least the Deep North Woods had been spared his chatter. But he did say that he had once played poker with Dr. Webb in a hotel bar in Long Lake.

In Webb’s lifetime, he suffered from a driven reality, as do so many men of honor. Once dead, as is typical, he was even more the leader than he was when alive. He was tall and enthusiastic, and his unique beard had once been black. It is my understanding he was a native of New York City and graduated as a surgeon from Columbia College in 1875.

He met Lila Vanderbilt in 1877 and they married in 1881. They had four children: Frederica, James Watson, William Seward, Jr., and Vanderbilt. In 1883, Seward entered the Vanderbilt family railway businesses as President of both the Wagner Palace Car Company and the St. Lawrence & Adirondack Railroad. He and Lila often hosted state and national dignitaries at Shelburne Farms, including Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and William Taft. [1]

In his later years, Seward would go to his Adirondack Great Camp named NeHaSane, a game preserve of some 200,000 acres, to commune with  a cliff and a few Tamarac trees.

He and my great uncle had entered into one of those close (the adjective is unwarranted) friendships that begin by not sharing secrets and very soon dispense with conversation. They once carried out an exchange of books and newspapers and engaged in noisy poker games. However, those days had long passed.

My memory of Seward  was him sitting on a lodge porch, with a medical book in his hand, sometimes listening to the irrecoverable echoes of the railroad. One afternoon, we spoke of fishing at Chasm Falls (where rapids sing in western culture’s key of C). Seward said that he was considering a visit to High Falls (where the roar echoes the eastern culture’s sad key of Ab-minor).

He added that the idea of the visit had been sown via a story orated by Norwegian metaphysician who lived in Brushton. Nothing more was said – may God have mercy on his soul – of fishing.

In September of 1926 Seward Webb died of an addiction to morphine.

 That evening I casually mentioned to Hemingway that I had a strange book in my possession . Ernest pleaded with me to divulge the contents of such a book and how I came about possessing it. Much to my chagrin – before I even realized it – he had wedeled the story out of me.

A few days before Webb’s death, he had received a sealed and certified package from Blodgett Mills, New York. It was a book in large print. Webb left it at the bar in Chateaugay where – months later – it was turned over to me by the bartender. I untied the string that held it together and studied the plain brown wrapping which declared “TO: Dr. Webb, Shelburne Farms, Vermont.” There was no return address, however it did have, as I earlier stated, a postmark of Blodgett Mills, NY.

The book was in English and contained 999 pages. On the tanned leather spine, I read these curious words which were repeated on the title page: The First Philosophical dictionary of Mlãn. Vol. VI. Realth to Regnaj. There was no indication of date or city of publication. Also, on the Title page, which lay between two thin gold foils of the same size, there was a raised stamp with this inscription: THE FIRST EARTH.

[1] https://shelburnefarms.org/about/history/whos-who

 

The Land of Akbar; Post # 3 (Haslam and Quatrich)

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Hemingway and I continued our attempt to analyze deeper meaning from the tome that he had brought back from Albany; whose corruption appears to grow greater, day by day. (But I rant – and have once again – detoured from my path on the story of Akbar)

 

The section on Language and Literature (approximately page 36) was brief. Only one trait is worthy of recollection. It noted that the literature of Akbar was one of chimera — a hope or dream that is extremely unlikely ever to come true — and that its chefs-d’oeuvre and meisterwerkes referred not to reality, but to the two imaginary regions of Tlejnas and Mlãn… The bibliography enumerated four volumes which we have not yet found, though the third – Silas Haslam: History of the Land Called Akbar, 1874 – can, at times, be found in the catalogs of Bernard Quartich’s book shop.

 

 

 

Silas Haslam had written, during the first years of his impending blindness, this elegant book; a masterwork of scholarship. Adding to its appeal are the hauntingly beautiful illustrations, all provided by Haslam’s wife Anna, a Viennese art student who was later treated for schizophrenia and died in an English sanitarium, three years after his death. Starting with a discussion of labyrinthine symbolism seen in prehistoric cave paintings, Haslam traces the development of the labyrinth through Celtic neolithic spirals to the mythic “lost labyrinth” of the Chinese governor Ts’ui Pen. No stone is left unturned as Haslam skillfully weaves an intricate tapestry of mazes across the warp and weft of time: the Cretan masterpiece of Dedalus, the fanciful hedge mazes of the European aristocracy, the twisting letters of illuminated calligraphy seen in both the Scriptures and the Qu’ran — even the religious discussions of Uqbar, the topic of his first book, are likened to mazes. Haslam expertly displays his particular genius in the way he relates the nature of physical labyrinths to other, more metaphysical ideas, such as religion, philosophy, and the then emerging field of psychology.[1]

 

In vain, Hemingway and I exhausted atlases, catalogs, annuals of geographical societies, travelers’ and historians’ memoirs: no one had ever been in Akbar. Neither did the general index of Hemingway’s newfound Albany philosophical dictionary – a copy of Voltaire I must remind you — discuss that name without innuendo and confusion. The following day, Josh Crimmins, to whom I had related the matter by phone, noticed a – gold-on-purple — cover of the Anglo-American Cyclopaedia in a bookshop in Utica, near the corner of Bleeker and Mohawk Streets. He entered and examined the 1st Volume (Aardvark to Dystopia). Of course, he did not find the slightest indication of Akbar.

 

[1] https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13481515-a-general-history-of-labyrinths

 

The Land of Akbar; Post # 2 (Hemingway’s Discovery)

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The following day, Hemingway called me from Albany. He told me he had found the article on Akbar, in a copy of The Dictionnaire Philosophique. The philosopher’s’ name was not recorded, but there was a note on his doctrine, formulated in words almost identical to those Ernest had stated the previous evening — though perhaps literally superior. Ernest had recalled: “echoes and fornication increase the number of philosophers.” Ernest corrected his memory by reading the text of the philosophical dictionary that he had discovered in the Arbor Hill/West Hill Branch of the Albany Library.

“For the knowers, the visible earth is an illusion or — more precisely — a fallacious argument, especially one used deliberately to deceive. Echoes and fatherhood are abominable because they multiply and disseminate the story of The First Earth.”

 

I told him, in all truthfulness, that I should like to see that article.

 

A few days later he brought the single, yet ancient, volume to Aiden Lair. This surprised me, since the volume appeared priceless; however, knowing that Hemingway had connections throughout New York City — and the corrupt capital of Albany — it was not an impossibility. I had, years ago, studied the scrupulous cartographical indices of Ukrainian Rеографія which were bountifully ignorant of the name Akbar. I was hoping that what Hemingway held in his hands was not part of that twenty-four-volume set.

 

The tome Ernest returned with was, in fact, a lithographic copy of The Dictionnaire Philosophique. On the title page and the spine – gold print on a purple background — the alphabetical order regarding the range of material that could be found within — (Christianity; Alpha to Omega) — was for all appearances identical to our copy at Aiden Lair. However, instead of 344 pages, it contained 348 pages; all four were located subsequent to the first thirty-some pages. These four additional pages contained a lengthy commentary on Akbar, which — as the reader will have noticed — was indicated by the alphabetical marking on the spine. We quickly determined that there was no other difference between the volume that Hemingway had returned with and the volume we found on the dusty shelf of the Aiden Lair book collection. Both, as I believe I have indicated, are reprints of the The Dictionnaire Philosophique. We read the article on Akbar with great care. The passage recalled by Ernest, the previous evening, was perhaps the only surprising one. The rest of it seemed very plausible, quite in keeping with the customary tone of the work and — as is natural — a bit boring. Reading it a second time, we discovered beneath its primary prose lay a secondary vagueness.

  

Of the fourteen names which were listed in the geographical description, we only recognized three – Xwarāsān[1], Armenia[2],  and Erzerum Province[3]. These three were intertwined in the text in an ambiguous way.

 

Of the historical biographical names, only one — The False Smerdis — whose following words were cited more as an allegory than a fact.

 

I have both made myself the murderer of my brother, when there was no need, and I have been deprived none the less of the kingdom — for it was in fact the real Smerdis the Magician of whom the divine power declared to me beforehand in the vision that he should rise up against me.”

 

Neither Hemingway nor myself could seem to make sense out of that rather short paragraph.

 

The geographical references seemed to fix the boundaries of Akbar, but its ill-defined reference points were mountain streams, hollows between them and caverns beneath the cliffs. We read, for example, that the lowlands of Mandarin Chua and the island of Achsah (the fourth one in the Delta) marked the southern frontier and, where, on this island, saints procreated; their progeny being philosophers. All this, on the 1st part of the article on Akbar.

In the historical section (I believe this started around page 34 or 35, if my memory serves me well) we learned that as the result of the religious persecutions of the thirteenth century, the conformist herd sought refuge on these islands, where to this day their crypts remain and where it is not uncommon for archaeologists to unearth their echoes.

[1] a historical region lying in northeast of Greater Persia .  [From Wikipedia]

[2]  bordered by Georgia to the north, Azerbaijan to the east, Iran to the south, and Turkey to the south and west .                [From Wikipedia]

[3] bordered by the provinces of Kars and Ağrı to the east, Muş and Bingöl to the south, Erzincan and Bayburt to the west, Rize and Artvin to the north and Ardahan to the northeast .  [From Wikipedia] .  [From Wikipedia]

 

The Land of Akbar; Post #1 (an introduction)

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I must thank two uncertainties for the discovery of Akbar[1]; an echo and a philosophical dictionary.

The echo disturbs anyone who finds himself in a specific ancient dusty great-room which has the odor of yellowing print material. This great-room is located in the once grand summer lodge of Aiden Lair. Aiden Lair may be found with great difficulty (if at all) in the depths of the Adirondack Mountains. The    philosophical dictionary was possibly labeled The Dictionnaire Philosophique, Voltaire, 1764. It was a literal but anachronistic reprint of the Philosophical Dictionary, Stanford, 1995. The event that I am about to describe to you took place a half century ago – therefore you must forgive my memory – for the ‘possibly labeled’ comment.

Ernest Hemingway invited me to an evening meal of trout and venison that he had prepared over a wood fire. He had gathered the wood from the forest behind Aiden Lair lodge. We became engaged in a long dial0gue over how to go about composing a short story by an author who would omit or lie about the facts and not be bothered about the amateurishness of his research. We finally decided that this would permit very few readers to perceive the appalling and boring reality that would face them throughout the entire text.

But, once again, I wander as I traipse around the edges of plagiarizing Borges.

From the remote darkness of the great-room, the echo listened to Ernest and me as we continued our discussion. We found that such a discovery as an echo is inevitable in the quiet of the Adirondacks. Echoes in these North Woods – and especially at night — have something supernatural about them.

Then, once we were sure that the echo was no longer interested in our conversation, Ernest recalled that an unknown saint who had influence over Akbar the Emperor had declared that echoes and fornication increase the number of philosophers. I asked him the origin of this remarkable observation and he answered that it was written in The Voynich Manuscript[2], in its section labeled “Akbar.”

We had rented The Aiden Lair Lodge in its entirety, yet totally unfurnished, except for two cots, two sleeping bags and a magnificent library. The great-room held the library, and this is where we found the The Dictionnaire Philosophique. It was located on a dusty shelf next to a pair of over-used snow shoes. On the last pages of Voltaire’s work appeared an article on The Telugu people.[3] On one particular page of Voltaire was a paragraph on the race, which may or may not have populated the Nicobar Islands, but not a word about Akbar. Hemingway, a bit astounded, poured over every page of the index of the manuscript. In vain he considered all the imaginable codes, diagrams, schemas and symbology. Before we finished the meal of wild game, he pompously informed me of his knowledge — several times. One such piece of information that Hemingway shared with me — even though I implored him several times to stop his incessant chatter — was that Akbar was not only a Mughal Emperor but also a region of Andhra Pradesh or Asia Minor. A second piece of information, once again unconvincingly shared by Earnest, was that this region was named after Abu’l-Fath Jalal-ud-din Muhammad Akbar. I must confess that I agreed with this conjecture but informed him that his apparent self-importance was giving me a headache. I speculated – to myself — that this undocumented country of Akbar and its anonymous saint were a fiction devised by Ernest to rationalize his proclamation. As I remember, Ernest was not typically straightforward.

After Hemingway departed the library for a cigarette, I located an 1838 Holmes Hutcheson Atlas on a lower shelf (beneath the old fractured snowshoes). Subsequently this atlas also proved to be unproductive in the search for Akbar. This atlas justified my doubt about Hemingway’s grand proclamations.

Later that evening, Ernest and I agreed to forego the Akbar question for the sake of friendship. I only acquiesced to this because he said he would travel to Albany, NY the following day. This I allowed, if only to see what he could find in the libraries and archives of that corrupt city. Knowing Hemingway and his search for a good story, I felt comfortable that he would succeed in locating some text relating to Akbar. We finished up the evening discussing how Theodore Roosevelt had stopped at this very lodge – Aiden Lair — on his way to assuming the presidency from McKinley on September 14, 1901. Hemingway recited the entire story from memory.

“President McKinley was visiting the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, NY. He was rubbing elbows at a social function — where other muckity-mucks could meet him — when he was shot twice by Leon Czolgosz, a member of an anarchist movement. Roosevelt immediately went to Buffalo. McKinley’s health appeared to be on the mend. Therefore, on the advice of the president’s office, Roosevelt departed Buffalo to return to the Adirondack Mountains. Roosevelt traveled to the Tahawus Club near Newcomb, NY in the Adirondacks. Word reached Roosevelt that McKinley’s condition suddenly turned worse. In the middle of the night, Roosevelt became impatient. Against the advice of others at the Club he decided to head for Buffalo. Nineteen miles later, he stopped at Aiden Lair Lodge to change his horses. Mike Cronin, the Aiden Lair overseer, accompanied Roosevelt the rest of the way to the North Creek train station.”

[1] Abu’l-Fath Jalal-ud-din Muhammad Akbar, popularly known as Akbar I IPA, was the third Mughal emperor, who reigned from 1556 to 1605. [From Wikipedia]

[2] The Voynich manuscript is an illustrated codex hand-written in an unknown writing system. The vellum on which it is written has been carbon-dated to the early 15th century (1404–1438) [From Wikipedia]

[3] The Telugu people or Teluguvaaru are a Dravidian ethnic group that natively speak Telugu. The majority of Telugus reside in the Indian states of Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, and town of Yanam in Union Territory Pondicherry.  [From Wikipedia]

IT’S ALL IN THE INTERPRETATION

Karl Marx Profile

Herr Marx told me, before he died,

That he saw capitalism with an appetite so wide,

That it could never be satisfied.

 

So he built a philosophy, a social theory,

That was so altruistic; it made my eyes teary,

But woe and alas, the Academy remained leery.

 

Well, round and round went the interpretations,

Creating worldwide chaos, and revolutionary vibrations,

Shaking both monarchies and industrial nations.

 

But capitalism remains rampant, to this day,

And 99% of us work for hourly pay,

Are panopticism and surveillance here to stay?

 

Inner conflicts and strife are a proposed solution,

Tried and true methods, of every revolution,

Experimentation continues in each Academic institution.

 

So do not engage Capitalistic destruction,

Own a machine, or engage in profitable production,

And tune in to Rush Limbaugh, for daily instruction.

Rush Limbaugh Teaching

Author

Old Ralph and Fred; at it again

Well now I have to apologize.

I APOLOGIZE.

Glad I got that over with. I hate apologizing; especially since I am always right.

Yesterday, you know, when I showed you that picture with all the guys on top of the log and they were about to roll it away with those big cables?

Yes – – – that picture.

Well I called it the Logmobile. But it is now obvious to both of us that this is the real logmobile.

Douglas Fir? I thought only redwood trees got that big. But you can see that the bark is much different.

Much like a basset and a blue-tick coon dog. Their barks are different also.

That was a good one. I thought it up all by myself.

So here we have the logmobile sitting on a truck and the truck sitting on a brick paved road. This sure ain’t any forest picture. And that sure ain’t Cousin Delamarter there by the truck. I have no idea who they are. Just another picture that Aunt Lizbeth sent to us.

It says right there on the sign Seattle, Wash. if my eyes serve me correctly.

I bet that is the mayor and the governor of the Washington Territory standing there in their nice clean britches on a brick-paved road to hold their feet up.

Sure ain’t no forest picture.

Nice truck. Must be in good shape to hold up that big log.

Reminds me of another Old Ralph and Fred story. This time they weren’t fight’n. Well – – – they might have been fight’n at the beginning of the story but by time they were done with the story they were friends again – – – as usual – – – almost.

Seems like Fred bought a rusty old truck so the two of them could go fishing way back in the woods on short notice. They used the old lumber trails.

On one trip they hit a big rock and it put a hole in the oil pan. All the oil leaked out and before they knew it they burned out a bearing or two. They left the truck and went fishing while they talked over what to do. The fishing took a day or two – and the talking probably turned into shouting.

They sure didn’t want to leave that beautiful old truck there. It was Fred’s first truck – – – and besides – – – the porcupines would chew the tires right off the rims.

Now if these two boys were gonna be fight’n this would be the time to do it; while they were arguing how to fix the truck.

But Old Ralph, he’s sort of clever you know.

They pulled the oil pan and fixed the hole with sap tar from a pine tree. Fred shot a bear and boiled the fat right off it. Old Ralph replaced the burned-out bearings with bear hide. Wrapped ‘em real tight-like — and then bolted the piston rods right around that hide. By time all that was done the oil pan patch was hardened up. They had enough bear oil to almost fill the oil pan. They started up the engine and the fix lasted until they got back to Fred’s place.

Then they got in a fight when Fred told everyone that he fixed the old truck by himself while Old Ralph kept on fish’n.

Those two old boys sure loved each other.

 

THINGS MY BIG BROTHER UTTERED

                                       An Oldie  ——>  1/1/2012

        (where has time gone?

 

Over the years my brother made a variety of wise statements. I am not sure if these thoughts were original or if he liked them to the point of memorization. Perhaps I have failed to credit an unknown originator or author. If so, please notify me and I will correct the situation immediately.

 

ON MY INABILITY TO GRASP LOGIC AND REASON

 “You couldn’t pour pee out of a boot if the instructions were on the heel.”

This advice I received very often. Usually it was offered after I had attempted to accomplish something that required dexterity; physical or mental. I suppose that includes everything I ever attempted to do in my brother’s presence. This observation by my brother stopped when I reached the age of fourteen.

 

“You couldn’t hit a mule in the ass with a banjo.”

This observation I also received very often. Typically it was uttered during a baseball game or when throwing rocks at innocent little creatures; which included other children.

 

“If I wanted any crap out of you I would lift off the top of your head and scoop it out.”

This was a common retort used to rebut anything that I had an opinion on, or at other times, if I offered unsolicited suggestions or advice. It always worked. It was my brother’s form of limiting free speech with political incorrectness.

 

“Did your mother have any children that lived?”

     This was his old fashioned way of saying “You are dead to me” or “Do you really consider yourself a human being?” This inferred that I was not in his league. To be charitable I must say that this was not meant to be mean. It was meant more to get a laugh from whoever happened to be within earshot.

 

“Listen, I think I hear your mother calling.”

This was an obvious insult to get me to remove my corpulence from his immediate area. The first few times he said those words it was more of a ploy. Of course I was naïve and really thought my mother was calling. So I went home. 

 

“Go pee up a downspout.”  (or sometimes “up a rope”)

Now every logical person knows that these are impossible tasks. So what did this really mean? It means what every good insult means; e.g., “go _____ yourself”, or “Bese mi culo”, or “Up yours” and on and on and etc. It was simply a conversation ender. It could be used if he was losing the argument. Or, it could be used to end a conversation that was going nowhere. But at the tender ages of us, who used it, we had no idea that a conversation was going nowhere. They were just conversations; or better yet, bull sessions.

 

“You look just like Joe Kaiser the Iceman.”

Mom always loved me best (honest, really, she did). So if my brother thought I was getting special treatment from my mother he would raise the question of who my father was. That way he could insult both my mother and I at the same time.

 

“You snaggely toothed, walley eyed, pimple faced, jerk – – – – – -”

This observation usually occurred whenever I was able to get the upper hand on my brother (which was not very often). I inserted the commas because I believe that this was not one single description of me but rather several strung together as in a list of my finer attributes. I am still unsure of the “walley eyed” part of this. It may be in reference to a walleyed pike whose eyes shine diabolically. This was ONLY THE PREAMBLE to the additional vocal abuse that I knew would follow.

 

ON NATURE

“Spring has sprung,

The grass has riz,

I wonder where,

The flowers is?”

This was a typical late winter saying as he and I sat around the kitchen table drinking coffee and eating “windmill” cookies. No, I don’t know the brand name and I can’t remember the flavor. They just had a windmill shape. Besides, we were not supposed to be drinking coffee and eating cookies for breakfast. That’s what happens when the parents had to go to work in the shoe factories before sunrise.

 

“Thirty days hath September, April, June and November; all the rest have thirty-one, except Grandma, – – – and she smokes a pipe.”

This utterance occurred at various times; sometimes when we were trying to determine when school started, or when the river swimming might end, or even calculating the number of days until our birthdays.

 

“A robin on my window sill,

Sang while I laid in bed,

I smartly closed the sash,

And crushed his friggen head.”

            Big brother was never much on robins, flowers or other such things he considered “too pretty.”  Customized cars could never be too pretty for him. Internal combustion engine sounds were “beautiful.” Natural things, – – – not so much.

 

 

“Take a young lad fishing today,

And throw the little son-of-a-bitch in.”

            {NOTE:  This is known to be a quote made by a psychopathic old-time comic. If I can ever remember the comic’s name I will pen it in right here  à  __________________________. It may have been Fatty Arbuckle.}

But that is all beside the point. My brother used this saying because he knew that I loved fishing and would disparage it at any cost. It was his loving way of calling me a little son-of-a-bitch. Has anyone noticed how he always seemed to bring my mother into the conversation? She was a saint and he knew it. I guess he just disassociated my mother from his comments.

But she did love me best!

 

And big brother and I really did love each other.

 

Behavior Modification OR Brainwashing?

 

Anti-Social Behavior Disorder

 

I receive several blog posts from a person who is very knowledgeable about bio-life; my term not the bloggers. The blogger knows much about birds, amphibians, beetles and various other insects. The posts always enlighten us.

In one recent post there was a story about a gentleman from the UK who had been caught netting birds; illegal netting at that. He was properly tried and paid his required fine.

Now here is the surprising part; he was also convicted of the crime of anti-social behavior!

How does one commit such behavior and who is to define what is social behavior as opposed to anti-social behavior? Allow me to allow Wikipedia to allow the United Kingdom to define it, to wit;

An Anti-Social Behaviour (sorry, they don’t know how to spell in the UK) Order or ASBO is a civil order made against a person who has been shown, on the balance of evidence, to have engaged in anti-social behaviour (again, with the spelling?). The orders, introduced in the United Kingdom by Prime Minister Tony Blair (Bill Clinton’s buddy) in 1998, were designed to correct minor incidents that would not ordinarily warrant criminal prosecution.

Now let me stop the definition right there (for the time being).

So if there is an incident that does not warrant criminal prosecution then why are there charges placed against the individual? Does not that constitute a form of “Double-Jeopardy” or injustice? I, for one, certainly think it does.

And where does the prime minister get the nerve to introduce such a miscarriage of justice? Is he the arbiter of justice and anti-social behavior? Let us hope not. Now we continue with Wikipedia:

The orders restrict behavior in some way, by prohibiting a return to a certain area or shop, or by restricting public behavior such as swearing or drinking alcohol. Many see the ASBO as connected with young delinquents. In July 2010, new Home Secretary Theresa May announced her intention to reform anti-social behavior measures for England and Wales with the abolition of ASBOs in due course in favor of alternative ‘community-based’ social control policies.}

OH MY GOD!  It looks like Home Secretary Theresa May (if she still occupies that office) wants to abolish ASBOs and replace them with “community-based” brain washing policies.

I don’t want to beat a dead horse but I just have to say “1984.”

As The Good Reverend Al Sharpton would say; “God-almighty, god-almighty” and then for post effectiveness and after proper hesitation one more “God-almighty.”

There are a lot of things coming to the good old USofA from the UK.  

I like:

Ø  Benny Hill

Ø  The Goodies

Ø  The Beatles

Ø  Monty Python

I dislike:

Ø  Uni-sex toilets (I would rather burst a kidney)

Ø  All English restaurants (cardboard chicken and dried out burgers)

Ø  Chastity belts (especially rusty or double-duty ones)

Ø  ASBOs (of any ilk)

 

So – – – if we are going to get ASBOs or “community-based” brainwashing centers here are some of my suggestions to be considered as anti-social behavior:

Ø  Socialism (of any type; and this is at the top of my list for a reason

Ø  Nose picking (this is the worse type of physical anti-social behavior)

Ø  Wiping it off under the bus-stop bench

Ø  Watching TOSH.O

Ø  Margaret Thatcher bashing (why wasn’t she named queen?)

Ø  Hording recordings of The Monkeys

 

Allow me to finish off the definition of an ASBO as per Wikipedia.

In the United Kingdom, an ASBO may be issued in response to “conduct which caused or was likely to cause harm, harassment, alarm or distress, to one or more persons not of the same household as him or herself and where an ASBO is seen as necessary to protect relevant persons from further anti-social acts by the Defendant.” In England and Wales they are issued by Magistrates’ Courts, and in Scotland by the Sheriff Courts.

Please allow me one more “GOD_ALMIGHTY!”

Why doesn’t the UK (and poor Wales and Scotland who somehow got tagged into this whole mess) just use “restraining orders?”

My brother-in-law and his whole family got a “restraining order” against me and it seems to be working out just fine for all of them (for now).

Copyright W. Tomosky 2018