Thursday, July 20, 2017
Talking Big, Talking Down
During my 72 years on this Earth, I have studied my way through college courses, and read my way through many books; technical, informational, philosophical, and fictional.
I have acquired, and forgotten, various, and sometimes esoteric, job skills.
I have learned all kinds of common and technical terms for "stuff" from abstruse and confusing, to absolutely senseless.
One thing in common about ALL these terms is: If you say any of these terms to somebody who doesn't know what THAT term means, you might as well be speaking a foreign language. THAT also means that, if you use one of those terms to someone who does not understand it, someone who may be ten times smarter than you OR ME, and they don't react properly...they are not dumb.
If we understand their confusion and take the time to explain what was actually meant, THEN, neither are we.
“If you wish to converse with me,” said Voltaire, “define your terms.”
Two people cannot understand each other, or even honestly agree or disagree, if they do NOT understand what the other is saying. Yet, so many times I have seen someone training, or arguing with, someone, gloat over their supposed superiority because they used terms the other did not understand, or was not familiar with.
Someone who intentionally uses unknown or esoteric terms to make another seem ignorant, is an ideal example of ignorance.
Wednesday, July 19, 2017
To Change Our Lives
We are often told, that to change our lives, we need to change something in it.
Well, I suppose I can agree with that in principle.
However, it may not be necessary to change yourself.
Question: What if you are everything you need to be, and someone or something shows up that changes the dynamic of your life?
We tend to suppose that, if things are not going "right" then we are "wrong" somehow. It might not be so. Maybe you just need the right person, or thing, or thought, or whatever, in your life.
There could be a huge turnaround without you having to "change" a thing about yourself, right?
I guess what I'm trying to say, is, if things are "wrong" in your life, maybe it's not your fault. Maybe "life" is wrong.
Maybe, somewhere, there's a something, or a someone, which will make your life "right".
Don't blame yourself. It might not be you.
Tuesday, July 18, 2017
Poem: Shine, Sun!
To tell the Sun,
To shine on you today.
The Sun said, "No.
I shall not go.
I will hide my face away."
Then, I climbed high,
Into the sky,
And, did so out of love.
Despite his wrath,
I cleared Sol's path,
As he passed so high above.
I'll not hesitate,
To alter fate,
I'm up for any crime.
To make skies be clear,
In your world, dear,
And, the Sun shine all the time.
Donovan Baldwin 7/19/2017
Saturday, July 15, 2017
Poem: Writer's Block
** With apologies to Edgar Allen Poe **
Each night in dread anticipation
I await a visitation
By a guest named, "Inspiration".
Sequestered in my smoke-filled den
Prepared to quickly let him in,
If he should visit me again.
As minutes crawl and hours fly,
Without his having yet stopped by,
I remind myself that I...
On many a long and barren night
Swore I'd give in without a fight
And "Nevermore!" attempt to write.
Yet, here I sit, awake once more,
As so many nights before,
Mind a blank, eyes red and sore.
Perhaps he needs this indication
Of my unceasing dedication,
To this, my chosen avocation.
In truth, I think it's in his head
To come when most of night has fled,
And I've given up and gone to bed.
**Published in The Advocate, 1993**
Friday, July 14, 2017
I have problems.
Of course, don't we all?
One of my problems is that I don't have much of a middle ground. Unfortunately, I DO have a middle, but, that's not what I'm talking about.
I was raised pretty much in a "middle of the road" world. Unfortunately, when I went out into the grownup world, there were a lot of ups and downs. Lefts and rights. Many seesaw swings. Not only did I not know how to handle or react to them, but, I got yanked along for a wild ride in a couple of instances. In those cases, I lost my footing, and my equilibrium.
Now, when life swings underneath me, or before me, I get disoriented. I guess, to continue the metaphor, I run to the farthest limits of the landscape, but, in the other direction of whatever the problem is...or I THINK it is.
That's another problem. I see things simply, and life has taught me, or I learned, whatever life was TRYING to teach me, that most people complicate things. As a result, I get confused, and, in an attempt to understand what others might be seeing, I add layers of complication to situations which should be pretty simple.
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Sunday, July 09, 2017
My Simple Rules For Life
I enjoy nature, classical art, including Greek sculpture, classical & country western music, and reading...all kinds of stuff: Sci-Fi, Mysteries, Non-Fiction. Pretty eclectic.
I don't have a lot of rules of life, at least not a lot of ones I actually try to live by. I do try to follow the laws and customs of the country or land where I find myself.
Most of the rules I DO try to live by are pretty simple.
Don't hurt people.
Keep your word.
Honor your promises.
Respect the beliefs of others.
Simple stuff, with, yes, room for modification if reality requires me to do so.
I respect the beliefs of others, but, I kind of hope they respect mine. One of these is, "My house, my rules." I won't get angry if you don't like the way I do things in my house, but, I will if you give me a hard time about it...in my house. You're free to say whatever you want...in your house. We're both free to either try to work it out, or go home.
If I offend, and you're not sure if I intended to, then that's proof I did NOT intend to offend, mislead, or hurt. If I do intend to offend, you will know because, it will probably be private, unless you make it public, and I will make sure you understand.
"Mislead" or "hurt"? Yeah, those are probably going to be accidental. I try to be honest about who and what I am, and, if something pops up that bothers you, it just wasn't covered yet. I would have told you if you had asked.
Wednesday, July 05, 2017
Death And Taxes
Just to put the world in perspective. I graduated The University of West Florida (UWF), with a degree in accounting in 1973. I took many classes in humanities, math, English, accounting, finance, and economics. Of course, I took many accounting courses; beginning, intermediate, advanced. Accounting for managerial control. Cost accounting. Government accounting. All these courses, had one or two books. Economics tended to have big, heavy books. Finance tended to have small, reasonably sized text books. I carried a briefcase with all my books each quarter (we were on quarters, not semesters). Then came the quarter I had to take TAX ACCOUNTING! The texts for Tax Accounting filled my briefcase and I had to carry the books for other classes in my arms. That tells you something. Either taxes are the most important thing an accounting student has to learn...OR...wait for it...taxes are just too damn complicated. I think citizens should pay taxes to help the government do important stuff (another discussion), but, the citizen should be able to put his or her tax information on a tax return the size of a post card, and, it should take a citizen about one minute more than it takes them to gather their data, to fill in that tax return. Somebody is getting rich from complicated tax laws, and, it is not the citizen.
Monday, July 03, 2017
Here's a comment for the "wannabe writers" out there. For every post of mine you see, there are several that have been deleted before I hit "post", or saved somewhere else. For poets? I have about five poems in various stages at this moment. One was started a day or two ago, two were started today, one is about a month old, and the other has been driving me crazy since 2005. I have been published. I can honestly say "I am a published author."
I cannot say I've ever been paid.
You know, that part does not mean a thing to me. "I write, therefore I am." Or, perhaps, "I am, therefore I write." When I stop writing, I am NOT anymore. When I am NOT anymore, I stop writing. People will pay you for certain things you write and for certain forms of writing, but, a writer writes because he or she must write. It is as much a part of my, our, existence as eating, breathing, or making babies. It is an ecstatic thing. I find it almost Freudian, that, a lot of times, when I type, "write", my fingers type "writhe" as if in passion.
Gotta have it. Gotta do it. Gotta love it. Gotta take a cold shower now.