It is an ongoing personal goal to hone my skills in hearing and retaining. I engage in patterns of listening to books I’ve already read in audio form. Some once a year (SeveneveS, Hyperion) and others constantly (Dune, The Poisonwood Bible, Kindred). Each book feels fresh when listened to for the first time, they also feel new in another sense with each repeat listen as I gain experience and find myself in different states of awareness.
I typically listen to Neal Stephenson’s SeveneveS around this time each year.
The book is profound in any case, but it has a special resonance due to the timing of my first listen.
There is a scene in which an anti-heroic character suggests that the revulsion and horror we feel in regard to extreme behavior observed in other people derives from our ability to wonder through empathy if there are conditions under which we are each capable of enacting similar horror.
The thought has frightening connotation for me in our current national moment as we are gripped repeatedly by the horror of police violence and the adjacent horror of rampant mass shootings. While the two topics may seem unrelated , they absolutely are not unrelated.
As a beginning, consider what percentage of the perpetrators in all of such scenarios are white and male.
It is important that each and every resident of this country research and absorb the history of policing in America. With even a brief glance through, the pattern of racial profiling and systemic white supremacy glares outward and draws clear need for a full abolish to the current system.
A future post will be devoted entirely to firearms. In brief for the moment, I am not shy in in my certainty the whole of our country and, in truth, the whole of the planet should voluntarily disarm in the interest of a stabilized future. Simple. Right.
In the lead up to more dedicated exploration, a few questions.
What is the pragmatic purpose of a gun of any type in our current reality?
*You may cry: hunting enthusiasts! Self defense! I cry back~*
What is the pragmatic purpose of hunting with a firearm in our current paradigm?
Further, the ‘necessity’ of a firearm for self defense is predicated on the presence of firearms. If we smelt them all, the perceived need is negated.
More prominently ~
What is the pragmatic purpose of civilians and residents of the US owning any firearm designed to kill other civilians and residents?
*You may cry: why do you like the word pragmatic so much? I cry back:*
We must apply ourselves to pragmatism and constructive critical thinking if we are to survive the oncoming century.
What is it about the psychology of american culture that keeps us from voluntarily giving up and smelting all privately held armament in the interest of greater good?
… … …
To lubricate the sinking in of all this thought…
An alcoholic beverage…?
My consumption in this vein is definitely up.
More thought to come.
A ‘perfect’ cocktail ~
*WARNING~ prepare for it to taste of alcohol, aside from orange peel and ice, that’s all it is*
1 ounce each ~ Gin (I like Barr Hill unoaked for aroma, or oaked for cold weather weight), Carpano Antica (a sweet vermouth to slay all other sweet vermouths but Dolin is also excellent), Gran Classico* which is a more traditional Campari replacement but more herbal and far superior imho ~ that said, GC can be difficult to find and St. George’s Brut Americano is also quite tasty.
Stir all three together (or shake them if you prefer)
Add to tumbler with a thinly grated orange peel* (I like cara cara but it matters little)
*for a heightened citrus experience, drag the inner side of the peel around the edge of your glass after heating it to draw out more oil
Drop a few ice cubes (or a single fancy large one) into the alcoholic trio once they’re in the glass.
Onward to *B L I S S*
Post Script ~ if you end up buying Barr Hill, take a moment to smell the beeswax around the top of the stopper. Much in life may be none of your *beeswax* but this is definitely everyone’s.
*More complete story ~ if I’m remembering right, Gran Classico is a digestif that predates Campari but has suffered in the bright red refracted light of Campari’s parent brand’s spectacularly funded marketing clout
Hold police accountable for the myriad of ways they abuse power. Also, hold on fucking tight and spread the good type hugs around. Let’s enact a future where these particular headlines take a break forever.
Thank you for being here. Take care of yourselves. Take care of your neighbors. Let’s think about one another for a positive change.