January 30, 2011

Sunday's Lectionaries: The Book of Billy Joel, The Book of R.E.M., The Book of Ecclesiastes


"Bardot, Budapest, Alabama, Krushchev
Princess Grace, "Peyton Place", trouble in the Suez..."

"Egypt was troubled by the horrible asp. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah
Mister Charles Darwin had the gall to ask. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah...."

Egypt? Muslim Brotherhood? Oil at 100 dabloons a barrel? Televised "experts" running the pundit kibble dispensers at 2000 RPM? A slim con-artist babbling in the West Wing with a hand full of gimme and a mouth full of noblesse oblige?

Good luck with all that, and see you all a few more miles down the road.

Millions of Muslims tired of inhaling sewage and having measly mean nothing getting out in the streets, and somehow believing that Islam is going to make it right and deliver the goods and not the gun and the noose?

Good luck with all that, and see all you survivors a few more miles down the road.

For a few days I sort of wanly yearned to make sense of it all since my magpie mind is easily attracted by the hot and shiny objects of today's news from nowhere.

For a few days I thought I might find something to say about the latest, greatest conflagration from one of the world's ancient cesspits.

For a few days I tried my best to care because I've been trained to say "I care" whenever some new fecal festival erupts.

But I'm a bad person and I've hit, yet again, the wall of compassion fatigue.

I guess I've just seen it all too often and seen how it so often turns out -- badly -- to get all that worked up.

"Sometimes it gets so hard to care
It can’t be this way ev’rywhere
And I’m gonna let you pass
Yes, and I’ll go last"

I try to care and then I remember to seek solace in places like The Book of Billy Joel:

Now that's a textual poem set to music that quite deftly tracks my life (Yes, I had that exact lunchbox)... at least up to around 1989. Since somewhere around the end of the 80s my life has been tracked pretty much by The Book of R.E. M.:

But both these Books from the Bible of Pop are mere rewrites, filtered through decades of defining degeneracy down of the original. And, in the end, the original is always the best. I think I'll stick with it and leave the prognostications to the purveyors of pundit kibble.

Forgotten the original? Let's review:

Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity.
What profit hath a man of all his labour which he taketh under the sun?
One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh:
but the earth abideth for ever.
The sun also ariseth, and the sun goeth down,
and hasteth to his place where he arose.
The wind goeth toward the south, and turneth about unto the north;
it whirleth about continually, and the wind returneth again according to his circuits.
All the rivers run into the sea; yet the sea is not full;
unto the place from whence the rivers come, thither they return again.
All things are full of labour; man cannot utter it:
the eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled with hearing.
The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be;
and that which is done is that which shall be done:
and there is no new thing under the sun.
Is there any thing whereof it may be said,
See, this is new? it hath been already of old time,
which was before us.

-- Ecclesiastes 1

But then..... just when I think I'm out, they pull me back in...

Posted by Vanderleun at January 30, 2011 12:38 PM
Bookmark and Share



"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood." -- Karl Popper N.B.: Comments are moderated and may not appear immediately. Comments that exceed the obscenity or stupidity limits will be either edited or expunged.

I've never felt the need to ignore the press more than I do now. Not knowing anything is knowing more than pretend knowing. The pundit kibble is just piling up in the bowl. Maybe someone will just sweep it all away.

Posted by: Jewel at January 30, 2011 1:24 PM

When half one's countrymen don't understand the plain meaning of the word "freedom," I am not optimistic that Muslims halfway around the world do. This way I can be pleasantly surprised if something short of total catastrophe occurs there.

Posted by: Gagdad Bob at January 30, 2011 2:43 PM

Mr. Vanderleun, It is amazing to me how you can set my mind to work with your wordsmithing. The Bible quote seems especially appropos today. I am grateful for your efforts.

PS. Is it just me, or did the ranting fellow on the video sound suspiciously American? Does anyone know what a Langly accent sounds like?

Posted by: Roger Drew Williams at January 30, 2011 5:07 PM

I just watched the video again. While the bearded gentleman is going on about his "god damn rights" pay attention to the people around him. The man with the sunglasses seems to have an aversion to being photographed and there are a couple of interesting "suits" nearby. One of the "suits" seems like he could be talking to his sleeve. Just an observation.

Posted by: Roger Drew Williams at January 30, 2011 5:33 PM

I saw the Bayonets video last night. I'm not buying in. In '79 it was the oppressed people of Iran rising up against the brutal Shah. Didn't work out so well. A power vacuum in the moslem world will be filled by islamists. That is never a good thing. Now the chant is "Dump Mubarak" the next verse is "Kill the Jews."
Just wait.


Posted by: jwm at January 30, 2011 7:26 PM

That's a point. A strong point.

Posted by: vanderleun at January 30, 2011 9:58 PM

Don't know about the bearded gent and the guys in the background. Made for TV reporters that speech but I didn't catch anything going on that seemed beyond standard editing for a point of view.

Posted by: vanderleun at January 30, 2011 10:03 PM

Is the American Revolution the ONLY one that wasn't subsequently stolen?

Now que the Howard Zinn fans to start trolling . . .

Matt? Ben? Yoo Hoo!

Posted by: Don Rodrigo at January 31, 2011 9:11 AM

No one is actually buying that this is a "push for freedom," are they? The muslim brotherhood has been trying to get Engypt for decades; they also have a step-by-step plan to replace to constitution with sharia (and it's scary to see how far along they've gotten.)

You KNOW Obama wants this one -- to know he gave Egypt to the mullahs, just like Carter gave Iran to them? Egypt borders Israel, and this is damn serious, and we do not need a child playing president right now.

Everytime I think he's done all the damage he can, it gets worse. (There's some idiot on Hannity as I write, speaking about this "democracy movement." Between Obama and the left, we are all going to be....islamic or dead.)

Posted by: vladdy at January 31, 2011 1:41 PM