Something happened just now that changed my whole mood for a day. It’s a very simple thing. I made a call to my pharmacy to request a prescription refill and dealt with an individual who was exceedingly nice to me and who made the process much easier. Her name is Laura. With some people you just have a certain chemistry and with others it’s more of a battle, and nothing can explain it save for the stars and planets or the vibrations of names and numbers. I think sometimes that the initial letter of a name can tell you a little about human interaction. In this case, “Laura” begins with L, whose number is 3 on the Pythagorean chart. The traits of the 3 are mostly creative expression and maybe emotive qualities. The R in Robert is a 9, meaning humanitarianism and the arts.
Is it all a lot of baloney? But even if it is, people need a way to make sense of life. We need a calculus of human and social chemistry to navigate the maze of this existence, and occult science seems as good as any method.
Quarter after eleven.
I ate a salad for lunch and then hit the street, carrying the little owl in a bag for Kim. On the way I felt dizzy and lightheaded but managed to get to the salon. I found out that Kim wouldn’t start work until noon; so I put the toy on the counter with Kim’s things and Karen said she would call her attention to it. I turned around to go home then. Roger is outside doing his pet project and I saw a team of Mexicans busy with some construction work. Actually they were just talking among themselves in Spanish and I felt like addressing them in their own language. But often it makes them a bit paranoid if you do that, so I thought better of it. I just said hi in English. I got home and ate a lot of chocolate to help with my dizziness, if that makes any sense. All the while, it’s a clear and sunny day and the temperature is very mild and pleasant. I think back to the times when my yard guy was a Mexican named Juan and his friend Geronimo fixed my truck’s electronic problem— and then wanted to buy the vehicle from me. I haven’t seen those guys since the politics got unfavorable for them, which is a sad story in itself. And sometimes I’d like to just drown my sorrows and forget everything happening today. Pass the chocolate…
On second thought, the gold of pure philosophy doesn’t put food on the table.
Two hours ago I could barely hobble to the store around the block, having lost a night’s sleep. When I got there, Lisa asked me if I was getting enough to eat, and I replied that I had plenty of food at home. She pursued that a lot of others were having a rough time since their Snap benefits were reduced, and some women would get pregnant just for the hike in food stamps or whatever welfare they received. She said it was ridiculous, but I don’t know if she meant to blame the mothers or rather the situation of the government. I know which party I would condemn, and it’s not the women on welfare. Again I see that I am not alone in abject poverty, yet the ridiculous thing is I have an education, but because of the stigma of my illness, and because I am honest about it, I’m totally screwed. What’s the difference between the dungeon for schizophrenics and the chains of poverty and prejudice?
Either way, we’re locked up and forced to be invisible to the public. It’s completely fucked.
The day began clear and sunny, then later the clouds rolled in and by now it’s raining. The new Maupassant book arrived yesterday. I haven’t really examined it yet aside from the back cover blurb. It’s very nice of course… The rain is coming down with some force just now. Yesterday I had some interesting thoughts about idealism and a perfect world, and what struck me was being unable to really feel this. The world of Platonic Forms, the ladder of Jacob’s dream, the expectation of Jerusalem and so on just seemed impossible to me. People live with imperfection in this world and we can’t hope for anything better. There’s no such thing as perfect. And I think the words perfect and ideal mean the same thing. Or perhaps it’s just a sign of the times when we abandon our notions of a utopia, whether here on earth or somewhere beyond our immediate world. Life has gotten very hard, and it’s also quite difficult to tell good from evil nowadays. Hamlet said, “There is nothing either good or bad but thinking makes it so.” The world has been thrown into confusion— even like in Macbeth with equivocation and the lies like truth. Again it seems that we need to get ourselves back to the Garden. I only wonder if the touchstone for a better life really is the Bible…
I’ve never lived through a Democratic rule without alcohol before. It’s a very strange experience, and looking around me I see much that I missed the last time. It kind of raises the issue of how important religion is. And is there any way to bring it to life again?
Maybe the time is right. But in Oregon, the time is never right. I consider myself fair minded regarding the rights of gay people. It may even be my reason for quitting the church and Christianity in general. The pastor will retire next month and the church wants to know who will keep coming and why or why not. But the hate toward gay people is scriptural: it’s written down in black and white in Genesis and Leviticus, so how can religion ignore that and pretend everything is okay?
I slam into a brick wall every time I write about this; and yet I know I’m not alone with my opinions. With more time and patience, I’d do some reading in Proust, particularly in The Cities of the Plain. He was gay and it looks like he was fully aware of the biblical ramifications of his lifestyle. The question is a very thorny one. Politically, it could be a long time for people to accept it and try to make progress towards a new kind of day.
And again, maybe in Oregon the time will never be right…
Maybe in a few hours I’ll go buy Aesop a treat, but otherwise I’m set for a while. I actually see sunlight from the east out of the window and some blue sky. A horoscope once told me, “Your fortunes may run very hot or very cold.” I’ve seen how my life path has been an economic roller coaster. “When the money’s gone and all your spending ends / (Friends) won’t be around anymore.” But strangely, I feel all right with that today because one good turn deserves another, giving the lie to the old song. Is the meaning of life no more significant than money? Even some of our spiritual places have grown pecuniary. We forget that love makes the world spin round… It seems inconceivable to let some people fall through the cracks and die of hunger. Something is seriously wrong with this scenario.
“Mother, should I trust the government?”
My brother once gave a panhandler’s dog a cheeseburger from McDonald’s but nothing to the man. Only a capitalist could be so perverse.
The morning with Gloria was really very pleasant. A few times the sun has come out but not for long. After she left, it started raining. This afternoon I’ve been sitting with A Princess of Mars and got up to the fourth chapter. It’s a strange kind of book, and doubtless I liked the cover art at the time more than the story. The comic book illustrators did a fantastic job with the strange creatures as well. But as far as things like social justice are concerned, Burroughs had some rather incorrect attitudes. Now it makes me feel a bit uncomfortable and maybe embarrassed to see it for what it is. And did I tell you that I come from a white working class family? My sister carries the same torch onward— or she did, and the family she calls her own still perpetuates those values. Maybe this is what I’m embarrassed about when I look back and see my similarities to my racist family.
It’s hard to judge whether they’re responsible for their ignorance. I really don’t know. But I think their attitude of anti intellectualism is willful and stubborn, and comfortable for them because blood is thicker than water. By the way, I don’t agree with this old phrase anyway. An individual can choose his friends but he’s stuck with his family.
It’s pretty weird to remember back to the seventies, being in grade school and going on trips with my parents up and down the West Coast, only as far east as the Snake River. And all along the trip to California, picking up a comic book here and there. I also looked at National Geographic magazines and World for kids. There’s a lot I remember but choose not to think about usually. Maybe it’s just too painful for me.
Times were definitely different forty years ago, or fifty and on back.
Also we see some politicians who want to flip the calendar back that many years. It’s hard to watch as our country cracks up like a great ship before it sinks.
I guess that’s what I was trying to say.
Quarter after nine.
I feel kind of lightheaded and dizzy, and I’ve got aches mostly in my legs. I feel like I could opt out of reality, take a holiday from the world indefinitely. With more practical ability I would pick a natural spot and build myself a log cabin, or one made of rock like the one Jung built by the shore of Bollingen Lake. I sometimes think my brother’s naturalism is right. He had one foot in and one foot out of civilization. I miss the trips we took to the Coast, where we talked and drank beer and ate like kings… Why did I get up at six this morning? I might be thankful that I got up at all… A few times lately I thought of the poetry of Elizabeth Bishop. I could go into it in greater depth for fun. A good activity for a rainy day. I see sunshine and black skies at the same time. My PCA is due to arrive any second now. Real life is no place for wimps.
Now it’s Sunday and I don’t plan on going to church. But, during the night I had some superstitious thoughts about why my finances are so precarious. If I gave money to the church, would I be compensated by a Supreme Being? It seems pretty unlikely to me since waking up a little more, in both the short and long term. It’s easy to get hopelessly confused by religion and politics, trying to mix and match what goes with what. I want to be done with all of it.
Seven thirty five.
The night crawlers are everywhere as you walk the neighborhood streets since the heavy rains last night. It’s a nice escape to notice the simple things of nature that are all around us at all times. I can’t believe the political news that began Thursday. I have neighbors who probably support the former president all the way, but the only principle he stands for is hate. If the people do elect him again next year, I really don’t know what I’m going to do. Until then, I can only vote against him. And if prayers have any power, I’ll send one up for the good of the nation and the world.
Quarter of seven.
Lisa told me about her tussle with a shoplifter yesterday morning. Some woman tried to get away with $50 worth of goods. They fought and wrestled each other to the ground outside the store, but the woman didn’t escape. So I paid for my items just as the next guy came up and said to Lisa, “That’s why guns are important,” and I hastened to get out of there, though I was thinking what a dick he was. Around here, there are lots of thoughtless attitudes like that. It was on the tip of my tongue to say we ought to repeal the second amendment, but it’s bootless arguing with an idiot. There are also lots of idiots in this community… Who was it that said that European people avoid us now because of our gun violence? They must think we’re barbaric over here, and I find it embarrassing and disgraceful for Americans.
My phone jingled a bit ago and it was my sister with news about my brother in the hospital. It suffices to say that his recovery is going okay. He might be discharged in two or three days. Hopefully they make it comfortable for him during his stay… Now I’m trying to make it up to my dog, who was very upset when I answered the phone. Have a milk bone and a smile.
Well I had a crummy afternoon today when I made a post and got a rather unkind comment from someone, implying that I needed something to do with my time. My day was pretty bad in other ways too. Polly returned my call this morning, and that didn’t go very well either. She talked about having a work ethic and some other conservative ideas that I don’t necessarily share. At least, I don’t believe in working for work’s sake or that a job should be painful 😖 or sweaty or bloody, etc etc. A conversation with her where I was totally honest about that could get pretty ugly. I was never a stoic, and my politics reflects this very accurately. She tends to scorn people who want to have fun in their lives, but I’m the type who wants to help people to their pleasures. Ugh 😣. I just hate being lectured to on this stuff, and it won’t make any difference in the long run. But it feels like such a cataclysmic conflict between us, like Armageddon, the war to end all wars and the beginning of the end of the world. This is probably paranoid on my side. I don’t know.
And after the phone conversation, Aesop was pretty mad at me because he doesn’t like intruders in the house, whether physically present or not. He’s still a little PO’d at me. Meanwhile, I emailed Pastor Dan about food pantry Friday morning and said I’d do it. I don’t know if this is a good thing for me or not, but now I have to show up.
One step up and two steps back, I guess. It makes me wonder how much worse things can get before they turn around towards happiness. By now I’m really sick of the world, and I’ve seen how people take a bad situation and make it even worse for each other.