Riding High

No time for blogging. Life is too full. No time to sit and listen to music and muse over life, alone. That’s a good thing. Life is so full right now, so full of good things . . . no time. Listening to This is Ska at full volume. Rude Boy Ska. Taking the time for that, though I don’t have it. Gotta be, cuz I am doing so damned good. Riding the wave, right on high, ambassador of love and money. Desperately beautiful, not because of desperate, but because I can hardly contain it all. Capable, apt, in the fucking groove. You can’t touch me, I am so on high, motherfucker, just try.
Now I am listening to Butthole Surfers, yeah, I can truly say one of my favorite bands of all time. Johnny Smoke. Live version, with double drums. Two complete drum sets playing on that sucker, and that gives a sound that is truly epic, even for my cynical ears, even after all these years. Good to hear that again. Got to settle down, but I can’t get my feet on the ground, riding so high. Waugh! Waauuughhh! An indian brave on his horse has got nothing against me. I’d ride him down with love, a loving grin as I lop off his head on the way to greener horizons yet.
You just can’t possibly get it. There is no way any human being can understand how happy I am. Even Hellstrøm the incapable fool is nonplussed.
If I were to think about it, I would worry about the world. I would ask myself how things will turn out in Iran, whether Trump and Kim will destroy the world. But I have other concerns. Oh, Oh, it’s that feeling, sets me a’reelin’. I’m in another dimension. Carefree, well, sorta. Cut.
When The Trickster Starts A-Poking (Bordello Kind Of Guy) from Gogol Bordello. Be a bad priest. But I am a good priest, everyone believes in me, and I want to make those beliefs true. I am the guru who will give you all you want. Let me fool you, trickster that I am, I know you want to. And, because I am truly on the wave, the legendary seventh, it will work.
Drinking rum, hola. Smoking a cigarette, enjoying it all like hell. Getting accolades just for doing things the way they should be done. That is the best part! Just doing it the way I always did, the best way I could think of, and for that, suddenly, getting praise and obeisance. It’s a wet-dream.
Now Crossed Cheques from Kalahari Surfers. Make of that what you will.
Now I’ll tell you what is really happening (more the fool you are if you believe what I tell you now. But I am sure you will, because I am riding the wave, motherfucker). I’s the boss now, I’s the Man, the Dude with the Whip. Oh yeah baby, brrrrr, yeehah! You wouldn’t believe how many people love the whip. Lucky for them I’m riding the wave, no need to crack the whip. I love them all, I know them all, and as yet there is no need for the whip.
Hahahaaaa. You poor fuckers. You are now the subjects of a complete fool. He rides the wave, perhaps, but he is also only human. He will treat you as best he can, but God only knows how good that will be, eh? But, of course, you will make the best of it. You will encourage him in his foolishness, you will suck up to him, in the belief that it will be to your advantage. You can’t possibly know what a crazy fuck he is.

It’s unbelievable. People you have worked with for many years suddenly believe you are a god. (Listening to Dancing in you Head from The Mekons). It’s voodoo. People you liked suddenly ascribe special powers to you. You are now a god, whether you like it or not. You are the solution to all problems. People stop thinking, all of a sudden. If nothing occurs to them within five seconds, they ask you.
To hell with them. They will learn soon enough that I am a fool. But, nevertheless, they sense that I am on the wave, riding high. They will obey. They could ride on the wave, but they don’t want to. They think it’s too high for them, the damned idiots. It makes me angry. I’m no damned god, but they demand that I be one. No matter how foolish I am, no matter what I do, they will henceforth put me on a damned pedestal. Up there, alone.
Now I am listening to to Nick Cave, Jubilee Street. A beautiful song. Now Higgs Boson Blues. Yeah, I’ll teach it to you.
So now I’m a captain, alone on a ship of fools, though no single one is more foolish than myself. Ah, to hell with it all, it’s just the usual monkey-business, and it doesn’t matter a wit what we do or not. But I am riding the wave, I hear the bells ringing, jingle-jangle, and I can’t help trying to make the best of it all. If we go down, I’ll go down singing, don’t give a damn what anyone else does, that’s for sure. And, whether the ship sinks or not, I’ll be the last damned man off.
So, now you see how it is. If you are an employee you might start to see how your boss sees him- or herself: completely overwhelmed. You might see how they are clutching straws, being complete assholes, because they are drowning in a see of godhood. Not all are destined for that.
Someone like me, who is riding the Big Kahuna, can master all that shit. I am not omnipotent, and if an unanswerable question comes my way, I’ve got the guts to say: what the fuck, I don’t know! “Behold!” they say, “Such humility! Even the Master does not know!” So, even when I haven’t the slightest idea what is going on, my non-answer will be interpreted as wisdom. Crazy fucking world.
Listening to Anapse To Tsigaro from 3 Mustaphas 3, one of the greatest bands of all time.
That reminds me that I have the most beautiful woman of all time at my side. She’s waiting for me.

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Language and Grammar

I am particularly sensitive to grammatical mistakes in the German language, since it isn’t my native tongue. I like to think my English grammar is pretty good, but I know my German grammar is just barely acceptable, though I’ve been speaking it for twenty years now. Nevertheless, I hear Germans making grammatical mistakes in their own language all the time. It’s forgivable in the heat of a verbal conversation, but I’ll admit it sticks in my craw when I read it in normal prose, dialog aside, no matter in which language.
It’s about the flow of a story, for me. Prose has a flow, a rhythm to it, that makes it beautiful, or not. That is part of style, so you can’t simply separate grammar from style, because grammar facilitates a proper rhythm. Prose with sentences that are grammatically false is like a road with potholes, you’re always bouncing up and down, you can’t get comfortable with reading it. Like music with sudden jarringly false notes inserted, it simply doesn’t flow. Besides, there is more than enough flexibility in English grammar to encompass wildly different styles of writing without breaking the rules.
And, after all, language is an important part of the human cultural legacy that is passed on continuously, and it’s self-inherent beauty should be preserved. It’s also about proper communication, and that can’t be done when there are no common rules which everyone adheres to. That said, we also have to realize that languages are living, ever-changing beasts. The rules will be continuously bent and sometimes broken, and if enough people break and bend the same rules in the same way, it becomes common usage and will be accepted as correct grammar.
A good example of this can be seen in Germany, where the English language exerts an increasing influence over the last years. In both languages you have the possessive form, which is denoted in English by an apostrophe and the letter s attached to the noun in question, as in ”Martha’s dog“. In German it’s almost the same, except that there is actually no apostrophe, just the letter s attached, as in ”Marthas Hund“. However, over the last twenty years I have observed that the usage with apostrophe has become more and more common in the German language, though it is quite simply wrong, and I am willing to bet gold ingots against donuts that it will be accepted common usage in another ten years.
So, what’s write, and what’s rong? You’ll have to decide for yourself.

Time

Time ain’t. There is no time. Time is subjective. When I was a kid in school they tried to make me believe that time was something linear, like edge of a knife. Problem was, I kept falling off, kept getting cut. I knew, without even thinking about it, that time was an invention to keep things from happening all at once. Cuz that would be totally confusing, would it not? Linear time is easy to understand, you can cut it into little portions that fit into the world. My teachers thought that was good, they thought they were doing me a favor. But kids don’t think that way, thank God.
Most of us kids learned to think that way, we were forced to, but some of us simply couldn’t. What I learned was to pay tribute to that system, though I did not believe in it. I learned to be realistic. I live in a world of deadlines and dates. It’s my curse, but it is a system. I like systems, I’m a system guy, in spite of myself. Damn, those teachers did good work, they got me, but nevertheless… time ain’t. Perfect example: gotta get up in half an hour, spent the night drinkin’ and thinkin’, the morning too…. People believe time is based on the movements of our planet around the sun, the movements of the moon around our planet, as if that was a repeating system, a clock. But it isn’t. It’s irregular. Our planetary system, our galaxy, our whole universe, is irregular. The most precise clocks we have in this day and age, after thousands of years of calculating time with increasing precision, fucking atom clocks, have to be corrected, because the universe doesn’t do what we would like it to do. The universe is irregular.

Okay, stop. I’m thankful for the concept of time. Just now I am listening to Ska Fort Rock from the Skatalites. It’s six in the morning. I’m drunk, been up all night, but no so drunk that I can’t appreciate this song. Why? Because it has a beautifully syncopated beat combined with wonderful horns… impossible without a concept of time. You know what gets me? It’s the pauses… the moments where there is nothing, where time is suspended… where time is drawn out… and then it comes… yeah. It’s a perfect example of what I mean. Subjective time, drawn out und then contracted, so beautiful…
Musicians play with time, and we should too. It’s a fucking game. Now I’m listening to Turn the Centuries, Turn, from the Stranglers. No pauses in that piece, incidentally.

Whoa

Whoa, boy, whoa. You ever meet people who can’t seem to relax? You engage them in a simple conversation, and it seems as if they take a harmless discussion as a challenge to their intellect. They are rarin’ to go. Whoa, dude, I am not trying to pierce your leather here, you think to yourself. Take it easy, have another drink ― no, I don’t think you are an alcoholic! Everything cool? Just relax. Everything’s cool, believe me. Breathe, just breathe . . . slow down, or you’ll die in a fit of apoplexy.
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Science, Baby

Scientists have a tendency, and don’t tell me they don’t, to reduce the world to their sphere of knowledge. This tendency isn’t confined to scientists, of course, so scientists are no different than anyone else in this respect. The difference is that scientists claim to know. Yes, they do sometimes know, in the pure sense of the word, but their knowledge is bounded, just like everyone else’s. They act and speak within the sphere of their own knowledge.
I have no problem with a scientist who does that while being aware of the boundaries of his own knowledge, but I believe that most scientists don’t think that way. Some scientists would say: those are not real scientists! Well, yeah. They are humans, and thus subjective beings, and they, just like everyone else, act within the boundaries of their beliefs. That these beliefs are supported by objective evidence is neither her nor there, since this evidence is always limited. Limited, if not by the views of the scientists themselves, then by the limits of human perception and the possibilities of measurement.
Many scientists claim that nothing cannot be measured. Maybe they are even right, but the fat lady hasn’t sung on that note yet. Even if they were right, we can be sure that the human race is a damned long way from that point. A damned long way, I mean, like, millennia. So we should be careful about making decisions based upon the evidence that scientists give us.
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Okay, some evidence is better than none, right? I am not so sure about that. It seems to me that, when we are talking about a world which has evolved over billions of years, we should be very careful about making decisions based on limited evidence from the last few hundred years, or, in some cases, the last few decades, or even the last few months. Whoa, baby, just a second there.
Let us assume that everything can be measured, that everything can be observed. And understood. That is perhaps the catch, no? Even if we assume that everything can be observed, can we assume that it will be properly understood? Infinite variables, quantified one against another? Fuck it, let us assume that every single thing can be implicitly known and understood (I know, the idea itself is absurd, but let’s just try). So, science has observed, measured, and understood everything. That’s the wet dream of science, isn’t it? Quantify it all, God help us; yeah, that God in which I don’t believe. Alright, so, we know it all. Now what?
I said I’d define ‘nature’. Hah, I lied. Nature is undefinable, by my definition. Nature is everything that happens, including the production of ‘synthetics’ by human beings. There is no way to produce things that are ‘unnatural’, unless you’re into the occult. I dare you to produce a devil. A real, bonafide, evil devil which will eat my soul (don’t have one, but that’s beside the point). Even if you did manage it, it’d be a natural product. Nothing, and I mean nothing, occurs outside of nature. A smart-ass would say: so nothing is unnatural? Yep. Nothing is the only thing that is unnatural. The only thing that can’t possibly be is nothing. There has never been, and never will be, nothing. There has always been something. Well, maybe someday science will prove me wrong, but by then I’ll be long dead (eons, baby), having been and still being something.
That sounds like religion, doesn’t it? An undying soul. Bit it’s not my soul that will never die, it’s the sub-atomic particles I am made of, and sub-sub-atomic particles, and the sub-sub-sub . . . They aren’t particles anymore at all, but rather the material of which something consists. Of which everything consists. I am convinced that we, as humans, will never know what we consist of at the most basic level. We are prisoners of the limits of our understanding.
In fact, I agree with the scientists. I truly believe that everything is measurable. But I don’t think we can measure it, no matter how deep we delve. We are limited by our biology, and we will never, ever get to the bottom of it all. And that’s the way of it. That’s natural, just as natural as the fact that we will never stop trying.
How will you scientist ever quantify my drunken thoughts? How will you capture the way I feel? How will you quantify the drunken idiots that I hear outside my window at this moment, down at the corner bar?
You never will. You wouldn’t want to. But these are the things that make up our daily lives. The feeling I have when I roll a cigarette, when I go take a God damned piss. Well, the time will come when they’ll investigate even that, but do you think that’ll help them?
Nah. They’ll just get lost in details, like they always have. It’s the human condition, detailing, categorizing . . . that’s the secrets of our ascendence. But there’s a limit to that. I believe we are pretty near the end of that road. Shit, I feel sorry for humanity, because I honestly don’t see how we can get over that hurdle. The scientists are just a logical step in our progress. They can’t help themselves. The question is whether we can progress beyond that phase. I doubt it very much, but, of course, I am just as much a victim of my times as anyone else. I can’t see the future, I can only extrapolate.
So, I imagine a future in which science has taken over. Science is your government, science is . . . God. The song I am hearing now, Candela, from Buena Vista Social Club, is long forgotten. Lovely horns and guitar. Science reigns, a science which has, long since, quantified these rhythms and melodies (Hellstrøm takes a short break to chew the dried algae bar lying before him, because that is all, all that is left to him). Beautiful new world, ain’t it?
Rationalization. That’s what science will be about. They won’t give a fuck what you think, because they’ve already quantified your thoughts. Tell me of a time when, ultimately, those in power didn’t make use of such knowledge. Humans aren’t stupid; well, not completely.
I’ll tell you something that gets on my nerves. I have wireless headphones. I go into the fucking kitchen, and I get disconnected from my music. It comes and goes. Y’know, I’m a technical person, I gotta deal with computers and technical shit the whole day at work, I solve technical problems every fucking day. And here I am now, wishing that my wireless headphones would simply work. ’So this is science,‘ I say to myself. ’Ain’t no wonder people have no faith in it, it only works half the time, if at all. Perhaps there is yet hope that the scientists will not take over…‘

Nuts

Peanuts, Walnuts. Almonds. They taste wonderful with wine. But, okay, what I really wanted was to ruminate on the meaning of the word nuts, and why it has several meanings. I’m going nuts, for example. Or: nuts to you. What in hell does that mean?
Google yields: Confucius say, man who sticks penis in peanut butter jar is fucking nuts. Har har, very ‘fucking’ amusing. Well.
‘Nuts to you’ = fuck off, I suppose, the association being between men’s ‘nuts’ (balls, or testicles, if you want the scientific word for it) and fucking. I associate that with the German du kannst mich mal, which means, more or less, ‘you can do me.’ That is not, however, meant in a positive sense, but rather like saying ‘fuck you’ in English. Fuck me, fuck you, fuck it all . . . egads, slowly but surely I am losing any sense of the big picture here. There is no literal equivalent to ‘nuts to you’ in German, since the Germans call testicles Eier (eggs) in everyday language. There we get phrases like die Eier schaukeln lassen (to let the eggs swing), which means to take it easy or be lazy, or du gehst mir auf die Eier (you’re getting on my eggs), which means you’re a pain in the ass. Languages are hell.
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I’m going nuts. You drive me nuts. You’re off your nut. How in hell do such phrases come in to being? Well, actually, it’s simple, I suppose. Your ‘nut’ is your head, a shell with a kernel: your brain, if you happen to have one. And, if it doesn’t function normally, like mine, people say you’re off your nut.
On the other hand we have the phrase, ‘it was all nuts to me.’ This does not mean that everything seemed crazy, but rather that everything was good, as in perfect, just the thing, yummy . . . like a bowl of nuts. And why, for Christ’s sake, are the nuts in ‘nuts and bolts’ called nuts?
By the by, listening to Raspizdyay, from Leningrad. That has nothing to do with nuts. At least I believe so… for all I know Raspizdyay is Russian for balls, eggs, nuts, what have you.