Embedded quotes

by Steve, April 9th, 2015

Back in the 90s I wrote some skunkworks software for work. Since I find computer languages bland and inexpressive, I included some poetry (Pablo Neruda and Alan Chong Lau) and some quotes. We stopped using the software a few years back, but I found the source code is still out there on an old machine at the data center. Here are the quotes.

  • “The only people worthy of consideration in this world are the unusual ones. For
    the common folks are like the leaves of a tree, and live and die unnoticed.”

    -Scarecrow, The Land of Oz, L. Frank Baum

  • “Your knowledge of what is going on can only be superficial and relative.”

    -William Seward Burroughs

  • “We know only a single science, the science of history. One can look at history
    from two sides and divide it into the history of nature and the history of men.
    However, the two sides are not to be divided off; as long as men exist the
    history of nature and the history of men are mutually conditioned.”

    -Karl Marx

  • “In my life, I have prayed only one prayer in asking for divine favor: ‘O Lord,
    make my enemies ridiculous.’ And God granted it.”

    - Voltaire

  • “If there ever was in the history of humanity an enemy who was truly universal,
    an enemy whose acts and moves trouble the entire world, threaten the entire
    world, attack the entire world in any way or another, that real and really
    universal enemy is precisely Yankee imperialism.”

    -Fidel Castro

  • “Rationalists, like Euclidean geometers, based their case on a few ‘self-evident
    truths.’ But Einstein convinced the world that there was no such thing as a
    self-evident truth. A few things were self-evident all right; but they were not
    true. The shortest way between two points is not the straight line; Time and
    Length are not absolute notions. This seemed to be the death-knell of
    Rationalist philosophy. If there is no self-evident truth, there is no
    Rationalism. But Rationalism refused to lie down and die. Luckily, Rationalism
    was not quite as rational as all that.”

    –George Mikes

  • “A commodity appears at first sight an extremely obvious, trivial thing. But its
    analysis brings out that it is a very strange thing, abounding in metaphysical
    subtleties and theological niceties.”

    -Karl Marx

  • “Everything you’ve learned in school as ‘obvious’ becomes less and less
    obvious as you begin to study the universe. For example, there are no
    solids in the universe. There’s not even a suggestion of a solid. There
    are no absolute continuums. There are no surfaces. There are no straight
    lines.”

    -R. Buckminster Fuller

forest throne

by Steve, April 7th, 2011

“A few minutes ago every tree was excited, bowing to the roaring storm, waving, swirling, tossing their branches in glorious enthusiasm like worship. But though to the outer ear these trees are now silent, their songs never cease. Every hidden cell is throbbing with music and life, every fiber thrilling like harp strings, while incense is ever flowing from the balsam bells and leaves. No wonder the hills and groves were God’s first temples, and the more they are cut down and hewn into cathedrals and churches, the farther off and dimmer seems the Lord himself.” ~John Muir

Here are several more photos from Jr’s 9th birthday nature walk.

QOTD: Swami Tejomayananda

by Steve, April 1st, 2009

Action without spiritual vision gives rise to division.
Vision without action remains mere imagination.
Vision, however, with action becomes a means of peoples’ welfare,
As it brings about an inner transformation in them…

–Swami Tejomayananda

Inspiration from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

by Steve, January 21st, 2008

mlk.jpg

In any nonviolent campaign there are four basic steps: collection of the facts to determine whether injustices exist; negotiation; self-purification; and direct action.

–Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Letter from Birmingham Jail (78KB PDF) (quote sent to a Jefferson High School e-mail list)

Those of us working for equity in Portland Public Schools are on the second step: negotiation. We’ve clearly documented the gross inequities plaguing the district, and we’ve outlined sensible ways to address these problems. We’ve been speaking to the school board about this for years now, and we’ve taken our concerns to the city council.

Our civic leaders are now saying they “get it” (how could they not?), but we have yet to see any significant concrete action to “address it.”

If the school board fails to address this inequity in a meaningful way, Dr. King has pointed the way toward direct action. Will we need to organize walkouts and boycotts of our schools that have been starved by the institutional racism and classism of PPS? Will we need to do sit-ins at our more comprehensive schools across town? Do we need to draw national attention to the shameful state of our schools before the school board makes significant policy changes to address it?

Don’t get me wrong; I’m not calling for direct action right now. I’m willing to give negotiations a chance, and I think we have a reasonable partner in Carole Smith. But policy makers need to be on notice that patience is thin, we are strong, and there is a sleeping giant in the cross-cultural, multi-generational Jefferson community that is ready to be awakened.

This is not a community to be trifled with.

More on that NBA “Brawl”

by Steve, February 2nd, 2007

Typical NBA punch. In hockey, your own team would beat you up for that.

— Two-time NBA MVP and proud Canadian Steve Nash describes his thoughts on Carmelo Anthony’s punch-and-run in the Knicks-Nuggets melee.

Here’s a funny take by Ivan Carter and Michael Lee.

Arundhati Roy on bombing for feminism

by Steve, August 15th, 2006

It’s being made out that the whole point of the war was to topple the Taliban regime and liberate Afghan women from their burqas, we are being asked to believe that the U.S. marines are actually on a feminist mission. (If so, will their next stop be America’s military ally Saudi Arabia?) Think of it this way: in India there are some pretty reprehensible social practices against “untouchables”, against Christians and Muslims, against women. Pakistan and Bangladesh have even worse ways of dealing with minority communities and women. Should they be bombed? Should Delhi, Islamabad and Dhaka be destroyed? Is it possible to bomb bigotry out of India? Can we bomb our way to a feminist paradise? Is that how women won the vote in the U.S? Or how slavery was abolished? Can we win redress for the genocide of the millions of Native Americans upon whose corpses the United States was founded by bombing Santa Fe?

—Arundhati Roy, Come September (speech), Santa Fe, New Mexico, September 2002

Top of the World, Ma!

by Steve, April 27th, 2006

Pssst — hey you guys, it’s me. Wacky Mommy. Hockey God gave me his password so I could clean up the spam in here. The spammers, they want to party with him! They like his site as it is Great! Also they show an abnormal curiosity about his, uh, butt. And who can blame them?

He wasn’t thinking that maybe I’d post while I was tidying up. Heh heh heh heh (maniacal cackling). The power! It’s in my hands! I could really hotrod it through his blog if I wanted. Vroooooom, vrooooooooooooom… I mean — I could put up girly-girl quotes (wait, here’s one: “People are like stained-glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within” — Elizabeth Kubler Ross). Or there are always cute potty training stories, or I could share a crumb cake recipe or two.

Here’s another quote:

“As I get older, I just prefer to knit.”

– Tracey Ullman

Oh, wait!

From “Postcards from the Edge” (1990)

Julie Marsden: “You’ve got to learn to deal with your feelings, Suzanne, before they deal with you.”

Suzanne Vale: “Do you always talk in bumper stickers?”

Julie Marsden: “You know, addiction isn’t the problem – it’s the solution.”

Whiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiip! Yeah that’s the sound of him being whipped by me. I would not do that to the big fella.

I bid you adieu. Hope you are doing well, wherever you are.

Love,

Wacky Mommy

PS — And a joke: “Why did the monkey fall out of the tree?”

Answer: “Because he was dead.”

Ha! Ha!

And here’s a link to Dad Gone Mad, best-known for pissing off Rockstar Mommy by nicknaming her “Crotchstar Mommy.” So. Not. Okay. And second-best known for such quotes as: “But if one of those little shits (is) whining about needing (to) leave the field to take a leak in the middle of our moment of glory, I�m kicking him off the team. For some things, you hold it � even if that means pinching your wiener and doing the pee-pee dance in front of 40,000 people.”

Betty Friedan R.I.P.

by Steve, February 5th, 2006

“The problem that has no name—which is simply the fact that American women are kept from growing to their full human capacities—is taking a far greater toll on the physical and mental health of our country than any known disease.”

—Betty Friedan, 1921-2006

She died on her 85th birthday. May she rest in peace.