Adonis Diaries

Posts Tagged ‘autobiography

Paved decrepit path: Half-cooked literates trailing feudal process; (May 1, 2010)

Municipal Elections in Lebanon

In my hometown, there are obtuse half-cooked literates constituting the newer classes of feudal “bosses” running for municipal election, and forming lists of candidates:  These literates may be able to read but they don’t (at best they browse their “favorite” daily); they could write a few sentences but never do. The feudal process of packaging lists of candidates goes as follows:

The “bosses” of each list, bored and in need of occasional excitements, get together in non formal setting (custom of relaxed chattering postures go nicely with entente in town’s affairs). First, the contending bosses lukewarm attempt to form joint lists, just for the sake of confirming in their famous pamphlets that they communicated and discussed town interests but unfortunately, communication failed miserably.

Under more favorable conditions, analyzing the various pamphlets could be very interesting and an essential part of the election. I discovered that the pamphlets were similar and pretty identical; kind of copy-paste of older versions.  Programs are out of the question: they don’t rhyme with feudal prerogatives. The logic is simple “why fool the voters with programs if they don’t take them seriously? The voters have learned not to take election programs with a grain of salt; even if the candidates wished to follow a program wholeheartedly.”

The process is applying the well-tested image of feudal mentality and practices:  Candidates got to be selected from the half illiterates from the various families or clans.  Yes,  a functional municipal council requires one boss; discussions and accounting must be kept totally opaque.  Once a list is complete (in our town the council is constituted of 15 members), then “eureka”: changes are on the way with the speed of a bullet train.

Now, each boss has a roster of voters and “pointage” of the leaning of each voter is undertaken.  For example, is this voter pro or con?  Does he need special attention to pay him a visit?  Is this vote to be bought and how much?  Does this voter can lean on the larger members of the family or clan?  I was not contacted one way or the other; I guess all the bosses classified me as a definite voter for one list; that I am not a reflecting individual; that I never change my minds and that no one ever change his position in a feudal town.

Now, taxis are hired and chauffeurs are dispatched to drop the famous lists of candidate to residences; the names of the lists comes with a long trail of the names of the father and grandfathers for discrimination purposes and for the older generations to reminisce on genealogy of the town. Anyway, why exacerbate matters with CVs: candidates are simple citizens and not government members? Mystery is the best tool to win the hearts and minds of voters: the less known is the character the better to win election: The more known is the figure the more warped the picture due to accumulated calumnies and belittling chats.

In my hometown, three lists of candidates are contending for the municipal council. Each bosses of lists included two female candidates.  How could they include more than two out of 15 members?  The bosses have no business with women and don’t know the varieties of women around: obviously, no professional women advisors were deemed viable in the selection process.  You hear rumors that valiant attempts to lure women in “politics” failed.  First, have women be contacted at the beginning of the process?  Second, what kinds of politics the bosses do for the benefit of the town to encourage women to participate?  Do they contact the proper sources in power and deep pocket to promote projects?  Are they in touch with foreign embassies to arranging twin coupling with foreign municipalities?  Are they planning and allocating funds to modernizing the administration?  Do they have in mind to starting a semblance of transparency in administration, project planning, discussion, and decision-making to encourage the general public to participating in town business?

I have no intention of voting: the “bosses” of the three lists took me for granted as a stupid clannish member of the community and they didn’t find it worth it of their time to contact me or include me in the process. I met with one boss of the Tayyar at a library; he was taking video of poetry recital and his son playing flute; that was a month before election time; he didn’t know me but I recognized him; we got into talking and he promised to relay my suggestions to the coming evening meeting for selecting candidates and resuming alliance discussions.  I never heard of him. My gut feeling is that he relayed my position but the code name was: “only half-cooked literate are permitted to butt in.”

No one of the candidates in the three list cared for my opinion then, why should they care for my vote?  If I ever change my mind then I might vote for the six female candidates on the three lists: The town is want of excitements.  Deep down, I wish excitements might degenerate into immolation of a couple of town people at the alters of the Gods of Ignorance and of the Absurd.  As far as I am concerned political parties in Lebanon are not valid parties:  two cheeks of the same ass; they stink.

Note:  They claim that a stupid individual is one who talks at the wrong moment.  My problem is not discriminating what is the proper timing:  I have missed so many opportunities postponing what I had to say.  I suggest to people not to clutter their brain of what timing is proper, and just talk and get talking.  I do write all the time.

Wild marathon run in the city; (Apr. 4, 2010)

            I got in bed before 10 pm and then got up at 2:30 am; my body was telling me “either you get up and take a walk or you suffer an itching trip that I can’t guarantee the consequences.”  I emptied my bladder.  It is too early to go down to my study and read and write. I prepared a cup of Nescafe and flicked on the TV.  I am watching “What eats Gilbert…”  Johnny Depp (Gilbert) is saying in the background “Endora is a place where you dance with no music” (It is your regular US one Main Street town.)  The main event is when a streak of caravans spend a few days or weeks every summer.

            Gilbert is the grown up boy of four working overtime to feed the family and repair the house that his dead father built. Seven years earlier, the father hanged himself in the basement; the wife would not get out of the shock; she ended up not stepping out of her home and she is now as vast as a whale. Gilbert shows understanding when kids come over to take a peek from the window at his mother.  The mother could no longer escalate the staircase to her bedroom.  She watches TV 24/7.  Once, Gilbert experimented with his napping mother: when he turns off the TV she wakes up and when he turns on the TV she goes back to napping.

            Erny (De Caprio) is the younger mentally retarded brother who was not supposed to live beyond the age of 12; he is 18 now.  Erny’s mother wants to throw a big 18 years birthday party. Gilbert still bathes his brother.  Once, Gilbert had to return to his new girlfriend touring the USA with her grandmother in a caravan; he gives Erny instructions of what to do after he finishes bathing; Erny almost drowned in his bathtub as Gilbert returned home. Erny is now scared of water and is left to stink for a week.

            There are the eldest sister taking care of the house and cooking. The youngest sister is 15 and just removed her teeth braces; she plays the trombone with the school cheerleaders’ team; she can’t wait to move away from this troubled family. Erny likes to play the “disappearing game” hiding in trees or hanging from the roof top; he waits for Gilbert to shout “have you seen Erny? I can’t find him” for Erny to laugh out loud and jump.

            Well, after the birthday party Gilbert presents the girlfriend to his mother who never received guests. Then, the mother decides to make the extreme effort to climb to her bedroom; she said to Gilbert “you are my shimmering knight”; Gilbert rectifies “you mean the shining knight” but the mother repeats “shimmering, glowing boy” and then asks him to send up Erny.  Erny finds his darling mother dead.  Gilbert says: “The police officers will order for a crane to take her down. I will not permit this ultimate humiliation for mother.”  They decide to remove all the furniture and set fire on this crumbling house.

            I saw the second half of another movie of an American baseball player hired to win Japan’s series.  It is 5 am and I feel sleepy; I decided to go back to bed. Then I had this fantastic dream. I don’t know how I met this file of joggers and I joined the runners. The run led to a city.  We are running on different kinds of streets; crowded streets, streets reserved for walkers or cyclists, others are routes among restaurants and shops. Here I am running by the side of a long and immaculate “trottoire” fast food chain.  I say to my running mate: “It feels as if we are crossing a cultural and educational area” He replies: “This is a university medical complex center; the homes are for physicians and psychologist.”  I look down and see the old sprawling medical center with plenty of tall green trees; it feels as if we are running  on an over ganging passage way: I am seeing through a window cars flowing on the highway crossing this hyped region. The passage ends on a blocked wooden wall.  The running mate takes a quick look on his booklet and says: “We must backtrack and climb the (Papal staircase)”.  I figured that this tight rickety wooden staircase is but two flights high; but no.  We are climbing and climbing various kinds of staircases; the last sort is a rope variety that ends nowhere and I would have to jump over.

            Just then, my mind or body is telling me: “time to get up and empty your bladder.”   I am having hard time opening my eye. It is 7:45 am and dad is preparing Turkish coffee.

710.  Part One: “The Great Disillusion”; (Mar. 16, 2010)

 

711.  They are not stupid; their mind is not crippled; (Mar. 16, 2010)

 

712.  Haven for terminally sick; (Mar. 17, 2010)

 

713.  Total denuding process of terminally ill; (Mar. 17, 2010)

 

714.  Part One: Complete equal rights in Islam for man and woman; (Mar. 18, 2010)

 

715.  Sex markets and trades; (Mar. 19, 2010)

 

716.  Is death necessary? (Mar. 19, 2010)

 

717.  Beyond Versailles and Vienna; (Mar. 20, 2010)

694.  Biter-sweet Euro: Before and after Greece; (Mar. 8, 2010)

 

695.  Part four: “On the wild trails of Mount Lebanon”; (Mar. 8, 2010)

 

696.  Part 5: “On the wild trails of Mount Lebanon” (Mar. 8, 2010)

 

697.  Ultra orthodox Jews in Israel have lost it; (Mar. 9, 2010)

 

698.  Part 6: “Wild trails of Mount Lebanon” (Mar. 9, 2010)

Choose: Truth or conscious? (Feb. 6, 2010)

In many moments in life we ask “what is the meaning of life?” and “what is the purpose in life?” Two questions that are not similar except for those who confuse meaning with definite purpose attached to it; sort of feeling obliged to act on life and the universe simply because mankind species is very particular. How about we start from the obvious?

We are a bunch of jumbled passions that we all share at different degrees of power and interest: they drive our life.  We ache by reflection to re-order our passions and sort out the strongest passions that mean most to us. We want to be discriminated as an individual, not on physical traits, but as thinking people who have distinct set of strong passions. A few of us find time for introspective reflections: we want to manage their priority and hopefully focus on; we finally think that we know who we are and what passions drove our life. We want to be at peace with our soul and spirit.

When we claim that we are in an introspection phase then we are explicitly finding time to sort out the driving passions that we realized were predictive of our life path.  We all have strong passions that no outside processes can change or transform unless we consciously act on them to redirect our focus and purpose in life.  Introspections are highly useful conscious periods in our life to comprehend the strongest of our passions and set priority for future activities.

Basically, we are adopting a philosophy to life that is compatible with our strongest passions.  That is what we constantly do: we are addicted to constructing models because we are spiritual designers.  We want to categorize our passions intellectually, by our volition and labor of reflection.

Most religions have to erect an ideology and sometimes slightly update it to face changes; the sacerdotal castes main job is to pressure you to accept their set values and morals as the best that characterize you.  In fact, religions do not want you to exercise introspection and learn your own characteristics; they want to “save you that hassle” and show you the proper way; they want you to be the man among all same men with preferred set of passions instead of realizing your individuality.  Only those following the preferred “type” are selected in heaven as on earth; the black sheep of strong individuality are not recognized in heaven because only the mediocre, the humble, the naïve, the simple-minded can be saved.

That was a good starting lead to answering the meaning of life for religions.  I have a question: if you were to choose between knowing the “truth” or safeguarding and preserving your conscious then what would you decide? I know that you will try to circumvent this basic query by returning a question with another one such as “Isn’t conscious linked to truth searching?” or “Isn’t knowledge an illusion?”  Let’s not get sidetracked; knowledge of nature and human behaviors is necessary for the ultimate knowledge of knowing your own passions and trend in life: introspection requires some degree of factual knowledge and the ability to discriminate among concepts.

Scientific facts should be recognized as statistical facts because uncontrolled observations have the tendency to show up occasionally and need to be categorized, understood, and then modeled.  If laws are voted on, by majority for a period of validity, then what is right and wrong in behavior is valid for particular period in human social development.  If justice is fundamentally a consensus agreement among the jury then why do we cling so staunchly to truth or “absolute fact”?

If “truth” is not reachable, if we know that any predictive model can be altered by surprised “chance” observations; if it is proven at every moment in our life that uncertainty is king (it loves to convince you at the most critical catastrophic events) then, why fight for truth and spread disorder for an illusion?  Our scientific and rational mind is fighting the good fight and is persistent in its endeavor because it refuses impositions of religious abstract notions that have no foundations or convincing premises. Our scientific mind is not fighting “faith” but fighting the sacerdotal castes’ value systems and ideologies.

What about conscious? We can define conscious by its consequences on our nerves, its wrenching battle through sleepless nights, and through nightmares.  Conscious is the constant fighting between imposed religious set values and your strong valid passions that define your individuality.  We are battling to preserve our rightful individuality in a manner that would not shock the community as “crazy behaviors”.  Most of the time we define conscious as how the community expect us to act and decide because religious belief system is enduring and hard to conciliate with.

You always have to choose: truth or conscious? These two values are valid values and should not represent a value judgment on good or evil attitudes. They are not compatible: they are the two poles that define the limits of your struggle in life.  No, it is not difference in opinions that drive people to fight one another: it is your choice of the moment of truth or conscience.  In general, it is what society force upon you as the set of values that represents your association or the characteristics of your “Nation”.

Choosing is a necessary conscious decision to defining your personality of the moment.  The selection is necessary for a free man but not sufficient for an “honorable” man. Did you decide to be the “idiot of the village” or the sane member of the community? Would you agree on piece-wise reforms or adopt intransigent attitudes? Would you go with tide or take a stand at the peril of your life?

This dichotomy is not to vanish any time soon and you will have to select differently at many moments. This critical choice is our daily battle and our constant struggle to find meaning to our life.  You keep choosing and act on your decision and then die as a man. You fail to choose and you die a pet dog.

By God, I hope that the set values imposed on me is the correct one.  I would hate after death to be condemned for laziness in the mind or condemned for not acting according to my own labor of reflection. Justice is ultimately an individual case and what the community believed is totally irrelevant and redundant for supporting clemency. Do you believe that the purpose of life is living? How to live life is the main problem.

Note: In a previous essay “Ideology: Not such a bad Concept before Ruling” I dealt with the notions of ideologies, philosophies, and religions: their purposes and structures.

647. “How do you feel?” (Feb. 1, 2010)

 

648.  Why they write? (February 2, 2010)

 

649.  Are you itching? I am: I am scratching like crazy; (Feb. 2, 2010)

 

650.  Lady Chatterley: Ten years later; (Feb. 3, 2010)

 

651.  Redemption Song and Me say war; (Feb. 3, 2010)

 

652.  Shoot me with a silver bullet; (Feb. 4, 2010)

 

653.  Second redundant hole by my asshole; (Feb. 5, 2010)

Second redundant hole by my asshole; (Feb. 5, 2010)

People surf the net for info; I don’t: I experience hurt Sitting Bull.

I submitted a couple of days ago to a repeat surgery that I had 20 years ago. I had a cyst removed by my asshole at the end of the tail (we call it “hair home” in Lebanon). At the time, 20 years ago in the USA, the wound was stitched and I was under that impression this time around.

The new surgery technique is to leave the wound wide open to heal leisurely, naturally and let flesh refill the gap, which lasts over 30 days.

I was surprised to learn that women undergo such surgery too.  Why not? It is another confirmation that mankind is a branch of chimps: our tiny tail is hidden inside; totally useless for balancing on branches, for efficient equilibrium, or as extra limb.

Some have the cyst way up and do not require sitting on a potty to disinfect the region around the hole. My case requires submitting to the humiliating process of sitting on a potty filled with lukewarm saline water with Betadine: let the microbes by the asshole run amok, around the vicinity of the gaping wound.

Iosine is poured in the wound and several layers of padding are added for comfortable cushioning.  I am using leftover of my father’s padding after his previous surgery of the urinary track.  The good thing is that there is no pain, but plenty of discomfort for at least an entire month; kind of the “real pain in the butt”.

Would you belive it? The insurance started by refusing a one night stay over in the hospital.  I felt nothing in my legs for over 6 hours after the partial anesthetics; what! I don’t recall being awake during the surgery.

The geniuses in health insurance expected me to be moved by ambulance on a stretcher home?

For the dry run, I opened the needed sacs and bottles and aligned the items for my mother in linear sequence. For the first attempt, I decided to wear the full-fledged pamper until mother gets her hand on that procedure.

It is nice to feel cushioned; it becomes rather too humid and uncomfortable after a couple of hours.  Mother is learning slowly but surely for efficient manners to pad me up. I tear and open all that is to be used to alleviate mother’s disarray due to her arthritis.

It is bad enough that I am still suffering from itching that has been lasting for a month.

Mankind has many more holes than other species.  This is due to our totally inefficient energy conservation system.  We are equipped with a jet reactor engine attached to a horse carriage. We have a powerful engine that consume plenty of energy, burn it quickly, and released it as quickly; nothing much is reserved for tomorrow, except poisonous leftover accumulating around the waist and belly.

No wonder we are so fragile physically and emotionally: we are mostly angry, uncomfortable with our sudden surge of energy, blood thirsty, and destructive of whatever we can get our hands on.

I heard a Mexican American stand up comic say that at age 45, he realized that he can now inadvertently sit on his balls: pretty painful.  Sweet invincible tight and lean youth!

644.  Romancing anti-matter; (Jan. 30, 2010)

 

645.  Twilight of “Knowledge lovers”: Part two; (Jan. 31, 2010)

 

646.  Dawn of Philo-Ethics; (Jan. 31, 2010)

 

647. “How do you feel?” (Feb. 1, 2010)

 

648.  Why they write? (February 2, 2010)

 

649.  Are you itching? I am: I am scratching like crazy; (Feb. 2, 2010)

 

650.  Lady Chatterley: Ten years later; (Feb. 3, 2010)

Are you itching? I am: I am scratching like crazy; (Feb. 2, 2010)

            It is a virus in the air; a sort of mushroom that spreads over your skin and inflicts crazy itching. Sometimes I blame the viruses; more frequently I loathe the contaminated and polluted air; mostly I am mad right now: I might have been wild in my adulthood but this punishment is outrageous; utterly inhuman. 

            You start scratching one spot and you end up lapidating your entire body.  It has affected me for over a month.  I finally saw a physician, not a skin specialist, who manes a dispensary and thus, she witnesses many cases of sicknesses.  The virus is in the air and that is how you are contaminated; many victims experienced lousy moments for many weeks.  The physician prescribed a single pill (costing $8) which effects last for a week; it was to be repeated a second week; that should take care of the mushroom. 

            The physician said that without the pill the itching takes 6 weeks to subside.  In my case and with the pill then I should be okay within days: I was healed the next day.  I decided for the second pill to make sure that the mushroom is taken care off once and for all.  I felt cured for two weeks. I am not sure: three weeks later and I am back to itching mania; not necessarily of mushroom; but what do I know?  Suffice to know that I wait for dawn to get some sleep; mostly, I am watching TV standing and consciously “shivering” my legs and shoulders on purpose just so the virus feels “dizzy”. Whatever is gets energetic and hipped at night and doze off somewhat in day light.  Help! I might be dragged to the asylum pretty soon.

            I just saw the same physician today: she is appalled for delaying seeing her sooner.  She ordered me to have tests for my liver tomorrow and would not prescribe anything before the results are in.  During my Calvary a perfect analogy flashed in my mind and grabbed it.  Would Israel be the virus in this region?

            If you say Israel is an apartheid State because it subjugates the Palestinian people to a different law of the land than the one applied on the Jews then Israel is upset.

            If you say Israel is a theocratic State because it extends citizenship to any Jew who sets foot in Israel then Israel is angry. Why, all of the over 600 religious laws that govern daily life, as applied by the Pharisee during Jesus time, are still valid and harshly controlled.  The secular Jews agree that Israel is back to the Dark Age, but how to convince the US neo-conservative “Christians” that this is so?

            If you say that Israel is comfortable with ghetto-like environment because it built walls all around its frontiers (that are not yet delimited in its Constitution) then Israel is appalled

            If you say Israel is a Sparta State because it believes in military resolution for any contention with any neighboring State then Israel is incensed. Why?  Israel is worse than Sparta: after 3 years of forced military service the citizen has to submit to a month per year in “the reserves” service.

            If you say Israel has been committing crimes against humanity since before its inception in 1948 and Gaza is the latest in evidence then Israel rejects Goldstone’s report in all its sections.

            If you say Israel has a peculiar kind of “democracy” that was called “apartheid democracy” in South Africa where laws are not applied equitably on all citizens; or if you say that the kind of democracy applied in Israel is barely a developed version of City-States democracies in Antiquity such as applied in Athens, Tyr, or Sidon then Israel feels obfuscated.

            I you say Israel refuses to grow up and abide by its responsibility as a member of the United Nations and respect UN decisions then Israel is furious: Israel constantly expects the US to cover up illegal activities with the veto power.

            If you say the Arab States want peace for returning all the conquered lands in 1967 as proclaimed in 2002 Arab Summit in Beirut then Israel feels resentful and laughs it off.

            If you say that Israel is a racist State because the UN declared “Zionism a form of racism” then Israel is up in arms to drop this statement.  Can you believe it?  Israel is investing money to demonstrate that Indians living in the region of Malihabad, (near Lucknow in the Uttar Pradesh), and known as Pathans Afridis are Jews from the tribe of Ephraim that lived in northern Galilee during Jesus time.  The Indian Shahnaz Ali was hired by Israel Institute of Technology to test the DNA of this “tribe” and hopefully extrapolate the results to include the Pashtoun tribes on the borders of Pakistan and Afghanistan.  Is that a form of racism? Since when did any religion base its belief system on race?

            I did a rough estimate: I figured out that the Phoenicians are over one billion, give or take one standard deviation, and are spread over the five continents!

            If you say that Israel is “the vastest psychiatric ward in the world with no treating personnel” then Israel is ready to lambaste the Israeli author as a schizophrenic, leftist, and probably “anti-Semitic” mole.

            If you say that Israel is indeed a very, very peace loving State then Israel is infuriated because you are mocking it.  It is a virus.

            No matter what you say is non receivable.  Best attitude is to censure your opinions and refrain from mentioning Israel, Jews, Judaism, Hebrew, or the Diaspora.  One term is admissible: Jews were gazed by Nazism and the number better be exact: 6 millions no less and not one over that scientifically reached number. Repeat: Jews were gazed and not shot, poisoned, killed, trampled, or any other form of “final solutions”.  Repeat: Exactly 6 millions or the holocaust literature would have to be republished; any number over 6 millions and Germany would be infuriated and Merkel would have to cancel the seventh nuclear submarines, built for free for the State of Israel, at Germans’ tax payer expenses; and for what use are these nuclear submarines put in service?  May be to support NATO policies?

            It is a virus: mushroom or no mushroom you feel itching like crazy: Barack Obama and George Mitchell are the most recent comers in this itching universe.

635.  Bono-metrics (Rock Star); (Jan. 28, 2010)

 

636.  Twenty years later, and I am still hurting; (Jan. 28, 2010)

 

637.  “I am mediocre; what’s in to you?” (Jan. 28, 2010)

 

638.  How can I win the war on “Terrorism”? Part two; (Jan. 28, 2010)

 

639.  Obama-metrics: First year performance; (Jan. 28, 2010)

 

640.  Obama-metrics: How to rebound; (Jan. 29, 2010)

 

641.  Obama-metrics: What to expect? (Jan. 29, 2010)

 

642.  It is a virus: You scratch one spot and it spreads; (Jan. 29, 2010)

 

643.  Part one: Twilight of “Love of Knowledge”; (Jan. 30, 2010)

 

644.  Romancing anti-matter; (Jan. 30, 2010)


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