April 25, 2013

Things I do.

It's been said, By John Donne (and I'm sure that we could include the women folk in this phrase) that; "No man is an island". Hell, even Hemingway believed it and adopted a few of the lines from this poem as the title of his book: For Whom The Bell Tolls, so who am I to disagree?
Yet I do!
I live my life and spend my days encapsulated and travelling from place to place confined within the physical structure of my body and the fantastical limits of my imagination...That itself is an island.
An island by definition will have a shoreline due to it being surrounded by elements that don't share the same physical or spiritual properties that it has and therefore is isolated due to encapsulation of that same said material; whether it be physical or moral, ephemeral or permanent.

There are times when passing boats may dock in my harbor, storms wash up detritus on my beaches or the crashing waves erode my cliff faces, but that doesn't alter the fact that I am a singular entity much like the particles that make up the atoms that make up the molecules that make up my physical self. There are forces and attractions which promote stability and create the fabric of our world and it's social infrastructure.

Wait! Now, hold on. Did I just contradict myself? Oh, shit, I did!!
Now I have to rethink this whole damned idea before I become as contradictory as Thoreau or prohibitively one sided as Ayn Rand.

Are we all in this thing together or not? If so, what exactly is my part to play? Do I have to worry that if I don't put on my socks in the morning a clothing factory in Rangoon will close down? I'm getting a little dizzy here and it's not just from the copious amounts of whiskey I dring brink, fuck, swill. I mean I'm starting to feel a little like a ping pong ball being slapped around by the Chinese national Olympic team.

Hmm, looks like I'm not gonna find the answer to many of the questions that bounce around in my head, but I sure do enjoy thinking about them.
How about you?
What's tickling your cerebellum these days???


April 15, 2013

I bought a rake

I have an odd sort of rule that I don't often get to implement (That's a rake pun, right there). If I get two consecutive days off and I don't have a backlog of work to catch up on or lessons that need to be tweaked or housework to trudge through, then one of those days is spent doing absolutely nothing. I spend no more energy than it takes to do my daily stretching, make a pot of coffee, round up a book or two and turn on the computer.

Yesterday was such a day, but the weather was so warm and inviting that I just couldn't resist a little excursion. Morioka is the kind of city that has so many Shinto shrines and Buddhist temples dotting it's landscape that you can't swing a small monkey around without running into one. They are generally the quiet idyllic kind of place that allows you to come to terms with your place in the world and gives realization that you don't really have much time to waste doing it.

You might notice his disapproval of the way I spend my time.

Just behind the place that I call home is a fairly decent sized parcel of land that lets me do the same kind of reflecting from my verandah that I can do at a shrine. On sunny days I watch the local kids run around and make noise and play games that seem to have no rules to them. I sit with my guitar and enjoy the effort my neighbor makes at turning the area behind her apartment into a flower and vegetable garden. During the winter I stand at the window and watch the snow fall and bemoan that I will soon have to drive through the frozen precipitate on my way to work.

But that space wasn't always like this...
It needed to be reclaimed from the wild, tamed and made worthwhile- 
see my previous post about how this all started. http://thenyd.blogspot.jp/2008/11/no-man-is-island.html

The problem with doing something like this is about the same as adopting a pet...your responsibility never ends.
The energy we expend on nurturing and maintaining the things that have importance to us is never truly wasted. Over time we are invigorated and rewarded with far more than we have invested  and on this particular project I even get a fair amount of physical exercise. 

It's important to keep the clutter and undergrowth from encroaching on the order you have struggled to create in your life. Personally, I like to put all my problems into neat little piles and deal with them one at a time. You still have to get that stuff out of the way and onto the garbage heap, but you don't have to strain with the whole damned miserable mess in one fell swoop.

That's why I needed the rake...


April 08, 2013

Numbers don't lie

I'm not sure if any of you reading this have the same habit of double checking your work, reviewing your life choices and making sure that your beliefs don't devolve into dogma, but I do. So, it was with quite a bit of trepidation that I decided to end my hiatus from blogging and do my best to reignite the fires of story telling with the possibility of getting some annoying and often obnoxious ideas out of my head, where they rattle and bang and confound and often keep me from getting a good night's sleep .

After slapping together my previous post; the first thing I did was to cruise around and take a peek at many of the bloggers who used to visit and sometimes comment. It was a little disconcerting to discover that a great many of them had, just as I had done, allowed their places to become dormant. I felt as if I were walking through houses that had been boarded up and were waiting for the owners to come back to resume their occupancy. The next thing I did was something that I am sure you could identify with.... I started looking through my old posts to see what I had written about in the past and to get an idea of what kind of changes I had gone through. That wasn't as fun as I thought it would be nor was it as painful.

I started blogging in 2006 and at one point in time I had three active blogs with a combined total of 813 posts. Now that may not be a whole lot, but I started to think about how much time, thought and effort I've deposited into this particular endeavor. I have never had, probably because I didn't actively seek it out, a large fan base on this page. My other page, laid to rest a long, long time ago and which you can find among the list of bloggers who follow me, did attract more than a few interesting people. Why was that? When I compared the posts of each blog I realized they had roughly the same amount of entries but were so radically different that I found it difficult to come to terms with the fact that they had been written by the same person. But were they, really?

It's no secret that we all carry a multitude of masks that we wear depending on who we are dealing with, what we are doing, and how we might be feeling about ourselves and life in general; but right now I'm wondering just how many shadows I cast when exposed to the light of human encounters.

And if I started counting them would I even be able to see them all?