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Old 05-30-2017   #691
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Re: Pessimistic Passage of the Day...

Quote Originally Posted by Kevin View Post
Go Crumb!

"I hate modern architecture. Every building built after 1955 should be torn down!"

YES! That makes my day!!!
Explains my love for my local city of Edinburgh. It's most interesting parts are almost entirely made up of older buildings.
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Old 06-07-2017   #692
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Re: Pessimistic Passage of the Day...

The body is the stuttering puppet of the mind, beginning as automatic and becoming autonomous. A transference— the puppet becomes the showman.
-- The Logomachy of Zos By Austin Osman Spare

“All this buttoning and unbuttoning."
-- Anonymous, suicide note
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Old 06-07-2017   #693
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Re: Pessimistic Passage of the Day...

And therefore, restless inquietude for the diuturnity of our memories unto present considerations seems a vanity almost out of date, and superannuated piece of folly. We cannot hope to live so long in our names, as some have done in their persons. One face of Janus holds no proportion unto the other. 'Tis too late to be ambitious. The great mutations of the world are acted, or time may be too short for our designs. To extend our memories by monuments, whose death we daily pray for, and whose duration we cannot hope, without injury to our expectations in the advent of the last day, were a contradiction to our beliefs. We whose generations are ordained in this setting part of time, are providentially taken off from such imaginations; and, being necessitated to eye the remaining particle of futurity, are naturally constituted unto thoughts of the next world, and cannot excusably decline the consideration of that duration, which maketh pyramids pillars of snow, and all that's past a moment.

-Sir Thomas Browne, Urne-Buriall
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Old 06-18-2017   #694
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Re: Pessimistic Passage of the Day...

“Uncouth, clannish, lumbering about the confines of Space and Time with a puzzled expression on his face and a handful of things scavenged on the way from gutters, interglacial littorals, sacked settlements and broken relationships, the Earth-human has no use for thinking except in the service of acquisition. He stands at every gate with one hand held out and the other behind his back, inventing reasons why he should be let in. From the first bunch of bananas, his every sluggish fit or dull fleabite of mental activity has prompted more, more; and his time has been spent for thousands of years in the construction and sophistication of systems of ideas that will enable him to excuse, rationalize, and moralize the grasping hand.

His dreams, those priceless comic visions he has of himself as a being with concerns beyond the material, are no more than furtive cannibals stumbling round in an uncomfortable murk of emotion, trying to eat each other. Politics, religion, ideology — desperate, edgy attempts to shift the onus of responsibility for his own actions: abdications. His hands have the largest neural representation in the somesthetic cortex, his head the smallest; but he's always trying to hide the one behind the other.”

- M. John Harrison, The Centauri Device

"When a man is born. . .there are nets flung at (his being) to hold it back from flight. You talk to me of nationality, language, religion. I shall try to fly by those nets." - James Joyce
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Old 06-25-2017   #695
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Re: Pessimistic Passage of the Day...

"Both of them-the fire under us and the lifeless cosmos above us-are just as totally meaningless, just as dependent on their "laws," just as absurdly idiotic as all other galaxies and all other stars and masses of fiery porridge which exist.
And in this lunatic world between the deadly cold and the foaming sea of fire there lives--logically enough--a lunatic humanity.
This is the Root of Evil.
On this madhouse of a planet, a madhouse from the beginning by sheer force of its meaningless existence, we wish to keep order! But as long as the totality is insane and meaningless, it's also meaningless to keep order here. But we fuss around arranging things, and we keep the Great Dread out of our lives--at least for the most part; only occasionally does the Dread awake and get the upper hand, it breaks out of the earth's seething interior and takes possession of us. We may flee into outer space, out into the endless cold, into the clear, logical, mind-forsaken universe; but we won't succeed in escaping from the earth's interior, from the seething, bubbling magma under our feet."

---from an essay titled The Witches' Revolution in Powderhouse by Jens Bjorneboe (book II of The History of Bestiality)

"So in the end it remains advisable to accept whatever comes, to behave like an inert mass even if one feels oneself being swept away, not to be lured into a single unneccesary step, to regard others with the gaze of an animal, to feel no remorse, in short to crush with one's own hand any ghost of life that subsists, that is, to intensify the final quiet of the grave still further and let nothing beyond that endure." ---Franz Kafka, Resolutions
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Old 06-27-2017   #696
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Re: Pessimistic Passage of the Day...

" Every so often, the gods stop laughing long enough to do something terrible. There are few facts that are not brutal. The bitter, insufficient truth is that God recovered, but fun is dead.
Alcohol: the antidote to civilization. Alcoholism is a fatal disease. But then I am not a member of Alcoholics Anonymous, because I don't want to be cured. Alcoholism is suicide with training wheels. I watch myself sinking, an inch at a time, and I spit into the eye of fate, like Doc Holliday, who died too weak to lift a playing card. My traitorous and degenerate attitude is sort of my book review of the world we live in. I resign from the human race. I declare myself null and void; folded, spindled, and mutilated.
. . .This bar is an oasis for the night people, the street people, the invisible tribe, the people who simply do not exist in the orderly world we see in Time - the weekly science fiction magazine published by the Pentagon - an orderly world which is a sanitized Emerald City populated by contented Munchkins who pay taxes to buy tanks, nerve gas, and bombers and not a world which is a bus-station toilet where the air is a chemical cocktail of cancer-causing agents, children are starving, and the daily agenda is kill or be killed.
When the world demands that you be larger than life, and you are finding it hard enough just being life-size, you can come here, in the messy hemorrhaging of reality, let your hair down, take your girdle off, and not be embarrassed by your wounds and deformities. Here among the terminally disenchanted you are graded not by the size of the car on display in your driveway but by the size of your courage in the face of nameless things.
. . .Half of these people look like they just came back from the moon, and all of them are sworn witnesses for the prosecution on the charge that Earth serves as Hell for some other planet."

- Gustav Hasford, A Gypsy Good Time

"When a man is born. . .there are nets flung at (his being) to hold it back from flight. You talk to me of nationality, language, religion. I shall try to fly by those nets." - James Joyce

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Old 07-16-2017   #697
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Re: Pessimistic Passage of the Day...

"I tell you: free yourselves! It is time, it is high time. If you wait any longer it will be too late. Suddenly things have come clearly into focus. The world's design has begun to show its lines, its loops and knots. The great cancer has escaped from the hangars where it was imprisoned and has begun to seep into the public squares and the wastelands. Now it is rising up in the air, exactly like a fifteen-story building balanced on concrete columns. If you wait any longer you will never see the sky or the plains. The great shadow is at this very moment sweeping across the earth with the speed of a jet plane. The shadow hovering above the earth, filling space with its two wings outstretched, like a vulture. No point in running away from beneath it, heart thumping. The shadow will always catch up with you, it is faster than your heartbeats. Delay no longer. Each second that ticks by forms a new knot, and each day a new wall has arisen somewhere, another window has been blocked up. . .
. . .So it arrived like a dream, on its own; suddenly, one wakes up with the realization that the dream was true and that its terrifying tale really had a meaning. Wake up! Open your eyelids for just a moment and maybe you will see daylight. One wakes up suddenly, with the realization that one was [I]inside[I], the whole time inside, and never for one moment outside. One wanted to understand and made great efforts to understand, but it was impossible because one was being dreamt. That's it; one was in the film, you understand, inside the film, being projected onto the screen in the shaft of light, and so it was really quite impossible to be free. One was in the book, too, printed on the page in black characters, inside the words. One was inside everything, but without knowing it. One believed in a whole lot of things, because they were specially designed for that purpose, to whisper inside your ear in a little lisping voice: Iii'm fffree, fffrrree. I too head the same little voice, and it was that that made me want to survive. Had I not heard the little voice I would not have been able to do all that I did do. . .Because I believed in these little things invented as games, playthings such as conscience, choice, death, absurdity, humor.
But for the big things, as for the real things, they had been well and truly hidden. They were on the far side of sleep, inaccessible, on the far side of the asylum walls. How to know them? Slowly, one wakes up, one passes through the curtains of shadow. One gropes one's way across the room, stumbling over pieces of furniture. Things crash to the floor. There are great rending sounds, but one had no time to find out what it was all about. The air arrives, at last, in little puffs, and the nostrils gorge themselves. One learns to walk, oh yes, one learns to walk.
Free yourselves! Cross through sleep's black veil, and you will see the far side of things. Spit upon words, since they were not free. Take an iron bar and smash all mirrors, since self-awareness turned out to be nothing at all, just one more false appearance, just one more layer of makeup. . .
Speak: but from the far side of language, too, from the side of those who create it. Each word needs to be turned inside out like a glove and emptied of its substance. Each speech should wrench itself from the ground like an airplane and smash through the surrounding walls. Up till now you have been slaves. You have been given words to obey, words to enslave, words to write slavish poems and slavish philosophies. It is time to arm words. Arm them and hurl them against the walls. Perhaps they will even reach the other side.
Quick, quick: the walls are multiplying, raising their high cliffs skyward. Walls that are reproducing faster than rats. Each second, there is a new wall. . .These walls are not sprouting just at random. One used to believe that. One used to think, myself included, that walls here and there had no significance. I say yes and it's a wall, I say no and it's a different wall. But the truth is that the shadows concealed men who were building the walls. They were drawing the blueprints for prisons, they had foreseen everything. Men. Know them! Men in shadow, eyes shining behind the lenses of their horn-rimmed spectacles because they knew something that you did not know. They had decided once and for all that the world was accursed. These men were terrible and secret, because they had traveled to the very end of the curse; they knew the way to the end of the corridors. From the top of their watchtowers they saw you crawling on the ground, they knew in advance everything that you were going to do. They had marked out the barbed-wire corridors along the ground, and they watched you creeping like caterpillars through their routes. It was odd and frightening, because it was not they who invented movement, or the world, or thought, but they knew all the concantenations of these things.
Man has become a subject of study for man, the sole subject of study. Seize freedom! Refuse to be studied any longer. . .Wake up! Gradually day reveals its outlines and now one can see the traps. Chasms at every step, to swallow you up, chasms that the hands of criminals have dug beneath your feet. . .
Ears and nostrils have been plugged with cotton wool, eyes have been hidden behind the smoked lenses of sunglasses. Free yourselves. Rip off the old mask of night that dulled your senses. Painted images have been pasted over the retinas, lying images. A television screen has been placed in front of each eye and you have been told: there you have truth and reality, there you have life. It was simple. Walls. With geometrical designs painted on the walls: the designs of life. Each imagined detail glowed, black outline against a white background. Orders have been inscribed at random over the surface: WOMAN, CHILD, WORK, WAR, DEATH, PLEASURE. All the necessary proofs have been furnished. Photographs, diagrams, graphs, columns of figures. Leaving no room for doubt. How to get out of the labyrinth, with just one's eyes and hands and one's mouth stuffed with words? It was a vision of the evidence. . .
However much one may want to break the panes, like that, with one's fists, the truth is that one will never succeed. There are just too many panes. Not just one, or two, or ten, but thousands upon thousands. There are sheets of plate-glass as big as mountains, as big as the ocean, as big as the sky itself, and there are others that are tiny, so tiny that to pierce them one would need a pin and a magnifying glass. . . .There are panes inside men's eyes, and in the depths of women's amber-colored irises. More terrible still, there are panes deep inside your very selves, great cliffs that seem transparent and that create impassable diving-walls within yourselves. Eventually, of course, you came to realize all this. But today these barriers have got to be smashed. All is hammer against the glass, all is clenched fist. A thousand fractures a second, and maybe you will be saved. . .
Be free: it is almost possible. I mean, there are no natural laws. But one does have some hope of understanding everything that is armored, everything that, century after century, has erected its citadel of money and violence and crime, everything manipulated by mankind. There is a game concealed within the vaster game. . .
They are always there, the eyes, the hooks, the claws, the chasms yawning underfoot. There, crouching in the shadows, or else sparkling in the light, eager to vanquish and devour. They are there. It is they who drill the hole in the back through which emptiness enters. It is they who strike the skull with an iron bar, reducing it to pulp. It is they who live inside terrifying objects, it is they who are the leeches' suckers. How could they ever disappear? They have always existed, they were there long before I was born, long before my first heartbeats. There were there from the first day onward, lying in wait in the depths of the air, in the depths of the water, behind the incubators' glass panes, in the iron jaws that sliced through my life's cord. They were already deep inside me before I suspected their presence, marked inside my cells in little hook-shaped signs.
But today the world has come to a halt and I can at last look at things with my dead-fish eyes. And I see that these hooks and these eyes were not simply there by chance. They had their sacred haunts, in the shadows or in the light, their holes from which they could bite and snap, their keyholes to spy through; extraordinary, is it not? They released their bullets from far away, following the progress of their prey through the telescopic sight mounted on their machine-guns.
For their eyes and their teeth did not have natural names. Man's hatred for man, contempt, slavery did not have natural names. These forces had human names, precise names written with letters on the pages of newspapers and books, written names that no one dared read. Names that were not ideas, but names for those who know how to read names. And first names too. Dupont, Fleischermann, Camel, Lucky Strike, Louis Cheskin, Ernest Ditcher, Rothschild, Unilver, United Fruit. . .
There were so many names, so many first names, so many words, that one no longer knew which to listen to. And yet it was from these names and words that war leaked out continuously. A silent and deadly war, a pitiless and vengeful war, a without dead men, without even any wounded, any spilt blood, a war that was certainly blind and that, though it was not waged for a few catchphrases or a few ideas, yet succeeded in sweeping the world. There was a war that seethed in the depths of most men's beings, and they tried to free themselves from it by writing poems or driving a car through pedestrian crossings at 70 MPH. But that war was nothing compared to the other field of battle that a few men had set up across the world. A few names, a few names with claws and hooks, a few names which may never become known. It was they who had hidden all these eyes and suckers and mandibles at the bottom of little secret holes. Look, now, look around you and see them: spaced out at intervals along white ceilings, on armored doors, on the facades of buildings, along walls, on the steps of staircases, these little black holes concealing eyes. If you approach them they will unleash screeches of alarm on the other end of the world. Sometimes, when you are walking by the seaside, along some beach, you may feel like thinking about things that exist only within yourself. . .Or else you look and you see a bird pass,or a dog, or a girl in a raincoat, or a bee. You see them pass, and you know that they are, so to speak, extraordinarily innocent, and that no war seeps out of the minds or glands. . .
But you are not as far away as you imagine. Just over there, a few paces away from you, the war is busy folding and unfolding its great flail. Just behind you. The eyes are staring steadily at you, keeping you under observation. In the depths of concrete casements, cameras are filming and tape recorders are recording ceaselessly. On the building sites, walls are rising out of the disemboweled earth, growing higher and higher. walls laden with mirrors and plate-glass. . .The hooks are not far away: just in front of you, there, at the edge of the sea. The beaches reflecting the sun's glow are surrounded by great walls in which ground glass glitters. The fences have closed their gates on which is written, for all time perhaps: ENTRY PROHIBITED and the iron bars point their sharp, angled talons down towards you, not to prevent you climbing over to the other side, because on the other side there is absolutely nothing, but to tell you that somewhere, at some time in the past, it has been decreed that they will have cause to kill you. . .
Fierce names, hidden in their lairs. Sheltering behind their walls of money, sheltering behind shields and steel doors and concrete casings, hidden like hermits in air-conditioned offices, in blocks flooded with electric light, throbbing with power. . . .There are men who, from the inmost recesses of their impregnable fortresses, direct the movements and desires of whole insect populations. There are men who make use of all the world's resources of science and intelligence and power to dominate others. There are hidden men who exercise absolute control over colors, odors, likes and dislikes. I tell you: there has never been so much power, so much warfare. There is an immense motor, here, in which each gear, each driving-rod moves according to a precise plan. There has never been so much money. . . .What do to? How to free oneself? How to tear off the names, one by one? How to rip off the masks, how to express any of this, how to be oneself at last, free at last? Where to hide, where to escape to? How to recognize innocence? How to forget? Alien hands have thrust into my throat, my eyes, my ears. Alien skins have stuck to my own skin like burning polyamide. Alien words have entered my brain. I would like to be something other than an echo. I would like to find an exit; just a door, even a ventilator shaft, through which I might leave. . . Rip off the masks, one by one, perhaps, Smash the dark glasses, smash the plate-glass windows. But every gesture made, here, to smash such things is taken up again over there to recreate them. And in the very process of ripping of his mask, the person suddenly stops, for in passing his hands over his face he has just felt a new mask growing. With stabs of a bradawl I can crush the electronic eyes, with strokes of an axe I can disembowel the computers and dynamos. What is the meaning, now of conscience, my conscience? Ridiculous, grotesque little hand mirror that I bring close to my face. Mirror to reflect the image of the eye? What of it? When the world is at the foot of a mirror that stretches up the sky and covers the surface of the ocean. I say, I say. The words of one single man are like the squealings of a rat, words are on sale in all the department stores, buy the word FREEDOM, buy the word LOVE, buy the word TRUTH, buy, buy, buy the word WORLD. Books are great catalogues , and thoughts are the advertisement ashtrays on the tables of cafe snackbars. Everything is possible, nothing is possible, But in the depths of their fortresses, within their padded walls, the masters of the world are well aware of what is possible.
I want to tell you once again, gasping out the words if necessary: free yourselves. Chains, iron collars, prison walls have become visible at last. But meanwhile other jails are sprouting within one's self, ignoble prisons that are not so easy to escape from. . .
The tyrants in their bunkers have decided that the world should be peopled only with slaves. They have covered the earth with their network of wires and electric lightbulbs. They have dug pitfalls everywhere, they have mapped out roads into which racing cars will dash blindly and be forced to go round and round in circles. It was they who had declared war on the world: they had ordained the moments when people should kill themselves, the moments when they should make love, when they should eat, or sleep, or write. They have invented all the desires and their satisfactions. They have invented pleasure, fear, revolt. Who are they? Where are they hiding? Carnivores thirsty for blood, lost in the seething mob, never seen, never heard, They are hidden behind objects, behind displays of heaped-up riches, behind mirrors and shop windows. Out of harm's way. Impossible to get to grips with. Slowly, for centuries, they have replaced the forces of nature. Their aims was to destroy the language of trees, the language of water and of fire, the language of stone. They have created a substitute nature, in which each element would be invented by them. A new world. That's how it is, nowadays; each is covered by a shell of cement that is tightly sealed hard and impenetrable. The river flows through great sewers, the waterfalls are imprisoned in dams, In the very depths of the sky, in the very depths of the sea, in the very depths of the volcano, there is a man lurking. The windows overlooking the abyss are all walled up. Cyclones howl in the aerodynamic corridors. The rain that falls is made up of millions of drops of mercury. . .
A man stops and looks. In front of his eyes, and in front of his ears, and in front of his mouth, and in front of his skin. Signs fly from all directions, crossing the air like cosmic radiation. Signs that are the forces of other people, signs that are anonymous orders. Signs for each obedient cell, signs for the blind, signs for the identical insects that march across the earth in one direction, and then back in the opposite direction, insects that all think the same thing, do the same thing, and say the same thing. As for the man who steps a moment and looks around him, for him the world suddenly turns black. From one end of time to the other, from one end of space to the other, he sees nothing but this infinite architecture."

- J.M.G. LeClezio, The Giants

"When a man is born. . .there are nets flung at (his being) to hold it back from flight. You talk to me of nationality, language, religion. I shall try to fly by those nets." - James Joyce
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #698
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Re: Pessimistic Passage of the Day...

"An almost equal catastrophe appeared to have fallen upon Sidon, for there were even more ghastly basements around the city, and there were several mass graves where the governor, the mohafez, in despair ordered the unclaimed dead to be interred. One such, containing 40 dead, lay on a traffic island, half covered in garbage and rubble. In one hospital, we found a doctor so scarred by the number of casualties and corpses that had been brought to him over the past five days that he could not bring himself to describe what he had seen without breaking down. In several cellars, we found the bodies in pieces, heads and arms, toes and slit-open torsos tangled together. Everywhere - in the streets, in the houses, even on the seafront - we smelled death. It had a high, sweet odour. No animal but a human could reek like this, a special mixture of sweat, intestines and faeces, of people whose stomachs had been blown out of their bodies, of corpses rotting under the hot sun."

from Pity The Nation: Lebanon At War by Robert Fisk

"So in the end it remains advisable to accept whatever comes, to behave like an inert mass even if one feels oneself being swept away, not to be lured into a single unneccesary step, to regard others with the gaze of an animal, to feel no remorse, in short to crush with one's own hand any ghost of life that subsists, that is, to intensify the final quiet of the grave still further and let nothing beyond that endure." ---Franz Kafka, Resolutions
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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #699
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Re: Pessimistic Passage of the Day...

"Whenever I leave my house, I expect something to happen which will change my whole life. I wait for it until I go home again. This is why I never stay in my room.
Unfortunately nothing has ever happened."

- Emmanuel Bove, My Friends

"When a man is born. . .there are nets flung at (his being) to hold it back from flight. You talk to me of nationality, language, religion. I shall try to fly by those nets." - James Joyce
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Re: Pessimistic Passage of the Day...

Jim Carrey's conclusion:

Jim Carreys Existential, Sad Interview At New York Fashion Week Is Strangely Iconic

And there's more!

We Asked Jim Carrey About His Bizarre, Existential Fashion Week Interview | W Magazine

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