Karmical

I know the word used to title this post does not exist. Consider the word to be a Sniglet. In this case, I am using the word to describe a condition or a circumstance. In other words, the nomenclature here is in need of some work. Karmical is what happens is when the Laws of Karma are translated or observed through a Sense of Humor. Which is usually countered with the question, “How can you laugh at that?”

 

Last week, it was finally warm enough to open the windows at work. I happened to be looking out the window. Then I started to hear a Low Thumping sound above my head. I was trying to find the source of it. I looked up to see a fly repeatedly flying into the window pane. How many times have I acted in the same manner? I can see where I need to go. I can see what I need. And yet there is some Invisible Force stopping me. It is so frustrating and annoying.

It was a similar to a moment I had a couple of weeks ago when I had to reinstall my printer/scanner on my laptop. I thought the process was going to take 15-20 minutes top. I had the Installation CD. Well, after four and half hours I had to stop because I had to go to bed. And I had yelled WTF enough for night at my computer. The next day, Google searches and system updates still did not fix the error message that kept popping up on the screen. I was getting close to reenacting the “Gorilla VS. the Samsonite” on the printer.

So I had to step away. And think of another approach. Which was to Uninstall and start over. Second time was the Charm to make it work.

Now back to fly who should have taken a moment to reassess his actions. Because his repeated Thumps against the window stirred the spider whose web was also in the window. And on his last attempt at the window he changed his Angle of Attack. Successfully getting himself stuck in the Spider’s Web. The Spider who in less than 30 seconds later had him spun in the web. See Picture above of the Final Scene for the fly.

It is moments that like this that made me take notice. I also have a Sense of Humor is not exactly Centered.

I can take it as a reassurance that that there is Karma Balance to the Universe. Or I can be like Charlton Heston at the end of The Planet of the Apes screaming “There is No God!”

All depends on the Coin Flip.


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Gray Returns to Green

This photo is from a park that is near where I work. I tried to go there when I can to take walk around it on my lunch break. Get outside for a bit and get away from all of the “electronic” distractions. It also depends on the parking lot at work. There are many days lately that if I left I would never be able to find a space when I get back. I will spare the long explanation of why that is.

The winter here was long and brutally cold. It just did not want to give up this year. But the last week, it seems like things are starting to change weather wise at least.

This winter left me off track with my writing. The cold just took the energy out of me. However, it was the case of the last year or so too. I am not going to go into the details. I am not going to list all the arguments, shortcomings and failures. Some were my fault. Some were inevitable. It was a combination of things. And I got drained by them.

I am just going to go along for now with Spring. And I get to start again. Somethings may regrow. Somethings may have to be eliminated. Somethings may get straightened out. Somethings may mend. The problem is after all that the “X-ray” will always show that there was a “break”. That is the hard part.

Stop thinking about what was. Just go back to working on what is and what could be. It is time to begin again.

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20,000 Days on Earth

“You have got to understand your limitations. It’s your limitations that make you the wonderful disaster that you most probably are.”

                     Nick Cave

 

When it comes to results of person’s Artistic Pursuit, I am not interested in sales numbers, chart positions or popularity trends. I also find people who Spew the importance of such numbers to actually be Boring and Uninspired people. Who themselves are Hiding behind those details.

I am mores interested in people who are creating despite the not have the Overwhelming numbers previous mentioned here. People who Charting their Own Course and Methods are far more interesting to me. Thus, they become more Enduring for me. They are really Characters within themselves. Not Charactures.

If you took the writers Edgar Allan Poe, Henry Miller, William Faulkner. And then combined them with Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley with a touch of Iggy Pop. You might come up with a person who resembles Writer/Singer Nick Cave. He has had a Cult-like following in music for more than 30 years now. In the mid 90’s/ early 2000’s his song Red Right Hand was used in many soundtracks. (The X-Files, Scream, Buffy the Vampire Slayer).

 

 

He is the focus of his own movie, 20,000 Days on Earth. In the movie, he makes an observation of how the Rock Star really should be that well known by the audience. The Rock Star should maintain a Sense of Mystery about himself. It is hard to say if that is true about this movie. It has the feel of a documentary film yet the structure is fictionalized in the terms of the action. The scenes with his therapist and the ones where he is talking with the people who run his archive are staged. However, he does reveal parts about himself within them. But we have to remember he is only allowing us to see what he wants. There is no Interviewer in this movie driving the Narrative.

 


 

 

In the movie, he talks to three different people with whom he collaborated with while he is driving in car. Yet the way they are edited in the film it seems like they are only there in dream. However, they are important to the narrative. First is the Actor Ray Winstone who appeared in the film The Proposition which was written by Nick Cave. (NOTE: The Proposition is one of the Best (and Least Known) Western of the last 20 years.) They talk about the Role and its Performance. And wonder about how and if a person can Reinvent himself. Second is former Bad Seeds guitarist Blixa Bargeld and they talk about the cause that ended their work relationship. Their biggest enemy was Time Itself. Finally, Pop singer Kylie Minogue who sung with him on the hit song Where the Wild Roses Grow. It was on the album Murder Ballads. Nick Cave admits a lot of people bought that a lot of people bought that album and “then decided to have nothing more to do with Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds”. But here the two talk about Remembrance.

 

 

 

This is a movie about a man trying Examine his life in the search to understand his own Creative Nature. That he may never fully understand the Nature of the Muse he is searching of. He has to accept that and Continue on with the work.

This movie is about what he reveals and the parts he keeps Mysterious. And that keeps His Illusion of the Rock Star. This is where The Fact and The Fiction meet and how his life exists on the Borderline of the two Realms.

 

 

 

“All of our days are numbered. We cannot afford to be idle. To act on a bad idea is better than not to act at all. Because the worth of the idea never becomes apparent until you do it. Some times this idea can be the smallest thing in the world. A little flame that you hunch over and cup with your hand and pray it will not be extinguished by all the storm that hollows around it. If you can hold on to that flame. Great things can be constructed around it. Massive. Powerful. And world changing. All held up by the tiniest of ideas.”

                    Nick Cave

 

 

                                                    

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American Sniper

“War is such an emotional subject, maybe I was a fool to think it wouldn’t.”

Bradley Cooper

I saw the film American Sniper. Let me state a few things before I begin. I am familiar with the story of Chris Kyle but do not know all the details of his story. I have not read his autobiography that this movie was based on. I may at some point but my To Be Read Pile has enough on it already. I have great admiration as a film director for Clint Eastwood. This is probably his best directing work since Gran Torino. Bradley Cooper did a great acting job in this and so did Siena Miller. It was a very good movie that you should see.

I have gone back and forth on how I feel about the Wars of Iraq and Afghanistan. The Post 9/11 title “The War on Terror” which needs an addendum to it. “The War on Terror: There Will Always be Assholes”. I really do not want to go into a political discussion with this movie. I know people who served in both of these conflicts. I have my Questions and Curiosities about their Experience there. However, I know they will not respond because of the fact “I was never there”. I know there is more than one Point of View to a story. This film could be a starting point to a discussion.

If you see this movie, try to put your political views aside for 2 hours and 15 minutes. I have heard the “Political Pundits” from both sides having another one of their “discussion” on this film with their usual screaming matches. When it comes down to it people like Michael Moore and Sarah Palin are basically the same. They are “Agitators” who use Sound Bites to get attention. Neither one of this two or people like them have any ideas (or willingness) to deal with the “Pragmatic” side of the issue they are on the Soap Box about. Plus, neither one of them want a discussion because they need to Stick On Point to their views. They are nothing but Click Bait. So please Don’t Click.

Another point is about the phrase “Based on a True Story” is used to avoid lawsuits. Every film based on a true event uses it. The reason is because they only have so much time to tell the story in movie. It would be impossible to cover everything. So if you need to fill in the details then you have to do some research on your own.

 


I hate to be using the term “Lone Gunman” here because leads into idea of Crazy Conspiracy Theorists. However, at the moment I cannot come up with one. So please forgive me.

This was an interesting choice of film for Clint Eastwood to direct. Clint Eastwood is the iconic representation of the “Avenging Lone Gunman” from the roles of The Man with No Name and Dirty Harry. Who would later go on to make the movie Unforgiven in which he attempts to Break Down the components of those type of roles. This scene best demonstrates that notion.


It is all right to have a movie looking at the “cost of violence” in a fictional setting or a time long past from here without there being an issue. It is a Safe Mental Distance. However, the same question is being asked here is based on an actual person. Here with have to attached a real name and face to it. It makes us Uneasy and it should. The following is the trailer.


The story of Chris Kyle is also what happens when a person becomes Legendary. He is also a Navy SEAL which carries additional Mythology with it. (See the movie Act of Valor
that was filmed with active duty Navy SEALS) It is also combined with history of events. History is taught with the Bulletin Points of High and Low moments. However, when you start examining the nature of the person involved with those moments then things get to become a bit more Complicated. We begin to see the Strengths and Flaws of that person. Place those against a perceived Legendary status and the Argument begins.

This is not the first time Clint Eastwood has made a movie about how Icons made during war are not what they appear to be. Flags of Our Father . How the story of the men who raised the flag at Iwo Jima story was modified in order to help sell war bonds. The companion movie Letters from Iwo Jima showed the cost of that battle through the narrative of Japanese soldiers. There also a price (right or wrong) that our enemies have too.

Another thing people forget is that film is “Show, Don’t tell” visual style of storytelling. If you want to hear a long speech about the ramifications of the war then skip this movie. Plus, you would never hear a long speech in a Clint Eastwood movie. They rarely if ever are used in War (or Action) movies. The most memorable one was George C. Scott in the Opening of Patton or the Jack Nicholson “You Can’t Handle the Truth” scene from A Few Good Men. (Which is really a court drama movie)

Pay attention to the visuals of the film. Here is a man who has to watch and react to war through the lens of the scope on his rifle. He sees the target and the results of his actions. The metaphor is he sees the war “through a microscope”. There are no Indiscriminate targets for him. They all have a face he sees. As he gains better focus as a sniper the price is he loses Focus on his family. This movie is then how he begins to regain the Balance between the two.

I know this movie is His Story but not the only one. The audience needs to keep this in mind because it is not theirs especially, if they have never been in that Situation of War. This is a story about what we asking Men like Chris Kyle to do and the price to it.

 

 

 

I came upon another opinion on the film from Henry Rollins. (I can agree and disagree with him. Either way he makes me think.)

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Metrics


 

I hate this time of year. And it’s not about the weather. December/January is when all “The best and worse of” get published pretty much everywhere. A lot of them are nothing but “Click Bait”. It is also the time of all the award shows. Most of them are “an Apple vs an Orange” arguments. They really aren’t a good metric to use to judge one against another.

 

However, if you are trying to create anything you will unavoidably be compared to them. Then the question “Why can’t you do that?”

 

I also get an Annual Report from WordPress on the traffic to my blog. I also get a different monthly chart from my web hosting company. The two of them are completely different from each other that I cannot draw an accurate conclusion at all about my site.

 


 

My site has not had my comments lately either. However, when I read other sites I am thankful that I am nowhere close to having to deal with Level: Troll comments. I have my site set that I have to approve the comments. I will as long as there engaging the post. And it does not have to exactly agree with my point of view. I am willing to try to have a conversation. I occasionally get the “You are so stupid. So Shut the Fuck Up!” I don’t approve this. Not because I can’t take it. It is because that statement is nothing but Noise Without any Substance behind it. And the same the same time the comment that says “I found your post interesting. I will check back for more in the future.” It is positive. However, it is generic. Plus more times than not the person’s URL is bogus website of “spams and scams”.

 

I need to figure out a better feedback loop for the future of this site. Using Web Stats is at the moment a very unproductive use of time with frustrating guess work. I also do not have anyone at the moment in my daily life to “debrief” with. There is no way I will ever mention this with my coworkers. I remember years ago reading from various writers stating that the “Friends and Family” plan will fail as a feedback method. The reality is they are Indifferent to what I am doing. I am not saying this out of anger or disappointment. I am just recognizing how things are at the moment. Their lives have obligations and catalysts that are not mine. I get it. However, they are things I will never have for myself. It is what it is. So I have to leave it at that. Plus, I do not want to anymore to be Mentally Waterboarding them with questions such as “Did you read it?” Or “What do you think about it?” I need to get away from the Painful Awkwardness that this causes.

 

The worse part has been it has caused me to be Indifferent about my work the last few months. I also slid a bit into what Seth Godin calls “The Tyranny of Being Picked”.

 

I needed to make that confession. Because it is time to get moving again.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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