Unfriended the old fashioned way

          Last year I was unfriended by my last, outspoken conservative-christian-republican (ccr) friend.  I've written about him before.  I did not learn of our no-longer-friendship in the Facebook-way (I don't book) but rather in the protracted, adult, manner of heterosexual men.

          Although I can't recall the specific words I said which (hindsight affords me the knowledge must have) drove a wedge in our friendship, I remember our last debate was about religion.  His routine, after hours of alcohol-fueled conversation, was to begin to proselytize—mine was applying logic to debunk his religion.

          Just before he started talking about god, we'd been discussing porn:  
"...because I'm a man and men have needs.  Even though my job takes me on the road for long periods, I still need it daily.  Hell...three or more times a day!  But because of those needs—that I, as a good christian and a good husband wouldn't allow to be met by anyone but my wife—I rely on porn even though I hate doing it."  He said, nodding in the direction of his laptop.

"You...I don't understand.  You're saying you hate porn, but it's a necessary evil?"  I asked.

"Porn is...yea.  It's bad.  Horrible."  He said.  "It can...it sucks you in.  Like dope's a gateway drug— pornography's a gateway perversion.  You can get addicted to it.  It...there's so much out there...it's too available."

"I disagree."  I said.  "It's more like guns than marijuana.  To call it a gateway means that once you start whatever you're 'headed-down-a-slippery-slope'.  Porn doesn't do that.  The adage: 'guns don't kill—people do' is more appropriate, I think.  If you follow a link from a porn site to a chat site to a webcam site and eventually end up driving to a prostitute you found on craig's list...you can't blame the porn, only yourself."
          At this point he shifted the conversation directly to religion and god.  His god.  He touched on his belief in the bible...his being saved from an afterlife in hell (and my lack thereof)...how homosexuals were terrible sinners...and then said he didn't vote for Obama because he was a Muslim.

          I called him a willfully-ignorant bigot—afraid of people who thought or behaved differently than he did.  When he tried to rebut, I replied that he'd just proved his prejudice by stating someone should not be president because of a religion different than his own; and proved his ignorance by believing something he read on the internet or heard on FOX.

          I, then, dropped the blade on our 12-year friendship (I guess) by calling his entire belief-system a fantasy...no different than scientology...and saying that after death he'd return to the state of nothingness he was before he was born; as had—and would—every living thing.  I also said that even though there's no such thing as hell, I still took offense when he proclaimed I and others were headed there, since it's the thought that counts and his thoughts were not those of a friend.    

          For three months after that, our communication was one-directional, then I stopped trying.  It's been a year.  I no longer have any more ccr friends to alienate.  There are some extended family members and a few acquaintances who are ccr, but they (unfortunately) know not to discuss their prejudices, flaunt their superstitions, talk about their imaginary friends, or embrace their ignorance around me. 

          I don't think he'll ever read this blog (heathen's words are probably a gateway to a lower ring of hell or something equally imaginary) but if he does:  Jim, I'm sorry I was rude and dismissive, forgive me?   

Reprove your friend in secret and praise him openly. — Leonardo da Vinci

Vanishing Point - Bonsajo

My creativity is hibernating so I'm sharing the art and music of others.

A painter should begin every canvas with a wash of black, because all things in nature are dark except where exposed by the light. — Leonardo da Vinci

The Universe

There are these adorable little organisms—did I say little? I'm sorry, minuscule creatures—who've survived for less than an infinitesimal tic of time (bless their hearts) on a almost invisible mote of gravity revolving around a mediocre speck of light.  Here's the giggle:  they imagine all of everything was created for them by a magic being who looks like they do.  I know!...Right?

Blinding ignorance does mislead us. O! Wretched mortals, open your eyes! — Leonardo da Vinci

Kill twitter, kill it dead & happy Lunar New Year

I received a comment worth commenting on today:  nice post. I would love to follow you on twitter.  The appreciative glint brought on by her first sentence was arrow-pierced and sword-beheaded by her last...creating in me a supernova-dwarfing impulse to verbally pummel a portion of Donnie Darko dinnertime conversation into the anonymous ingénue.

Maybe her comment was an attempt at irony (the 140 character-thing).  Although I'm proud of the chapter upon which I received this comment-l'exaspérant, it's not short (coming within hand-grenade range of 1,200 words).  It could also be that this néophyte had yet to read my previously written thoughts on the ridiculous fad.

This bit of artistic expression should clarify my position on the twitter matter.

(I realize my anonymous twitter-friendly commenter may be male, because some gay men do tweet—but, if that's the case, he'd be ok with my feminine pronoun usage.)

Thirst will parch your tongue and your body will waste through lack of sleep ere you can describe in words that which painting instantly sets before the eye.  —  Leonardo da Vinci

Pogo - Alice

The color of the object illuminated partakes of the color of that which illuminates it. — Leonardo da Vinci

'Til ya drop from muscle fatigue

I got my exercise today by pushing 250 pounds (114kg) of groceries around Costco for over an hour.  For those unfamiliar with this wholesale retailer, it's a quantity-not-quality store (think IKEA for food and sundries).  Need a gallon of Mayonnaise or a 50 pound (23Kg) bag of rice?  Costco is the place to go.

I pushed the cart at Costco today, because my paramour cringes when she looks at the receipt after I shop.  If I buy groceries, (and I never go to Costco) I select items based on:  my personal tastes and item-quality (which I admit, I can't always clearly explain).

For example, I buy only organic milk even though it costs almost double.  Why? She asks.  Because I refuse to drink milk from a container bearing the disclaimer: The FDA has determined there is no significant difference between milk derived from hormone-treated and non-hormone-treated cows.  If they need a disclaimer, I don't want to consume it on a daily basis.

I prefer brown free-range eggs.  Yes, they taste exactly the same as the white ones that drop through the bars of a cage; but my brain says they look and sound better no matter what my stomach says.

European butter, imported from Ireland or some-such far-away land, is the only butter I'll buy.  My tongue can definitely tell the difference (and don't even consider trying to get me to use a tub of whipped oil, because I can definitely believe it's not butter!).

Don't get me wrong.  I appreciate some of the bulk items available at Costco.  My cats never complain about the cheap clay they cover their shit with.  A gross of Toilet paper rolls or a double-peck of bread (which can be frozen for a few months) makes financial sense.  Whatever Ok, I get it.

But something I realized about Costco—which occurred to me today—was if you are low on money, on a fixed income, or unemployed:  definitely become a Costco member.  Go daily for lunch or dinner.  Take your entire family.  Put an item or two in your cart (there's bound to be something you need).  Stop at each of the different "tasting booths" scattered throughout the store and eat what they offer.  (The primary function of a "Tasting booth" is generating a continuous effluence of "pleasant cooking odors."   The type of odors which make you hungry.  Hungry people buy more groceries.  So, don't think you are taking advantage—even if you fill your gut at the "tasting booths" every day for months and years—because they are trying to take advantage of you!)  Wanna try a small slice of pizza?... eat some roasted almonds?... taste a four-cheese ravioli?... sample some spicy sausage?  Before you know it, you and yours will be too full from eating the residue from the pleasant cooking odor stations to want the foot-long/drink combo (available for a dollar-fifty at the food concession on your way out).

The truth of things is the chief nutriment of superior intellects. — Leonardo da Vinci

787 clip arts - Oliver Laric

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. — Leonardo da Vinci

unfurled hypnagogic logic

Painting is poetry that is seen rather than felt, and poetry is painting that is felt rather than seen. — Leonardo da Vinci (1452 – 1519)