a thread for mundane ironists

This is the place to shave off that long white beard and stop being philosophical; a forum for members to just talk like normal human beings.

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Thu Oct 26, 2017 7:00 pm

Jonathan Safran Foer

I trust that you have a good purpose for your ignorance.


No, I don't trust that you do at all.

There's nothing that could convince someone who doesn't want to be convinced. But there is an abundance of clues that would give the wanting believer something to hold on to.

Let's call this, among other things, human nature. Though, sure, check with Satyr first.

I did not feel that he owed it to me. And I did not feel like I owed it to him. We owed it to each other, which is something different.

Maybe it is, maybe it isn't. But point taken.

She always saw through him, as if he were just another window.

And then, out of the blue [sort of], he was banned.

Rabbi, I feel no despair anymore. For seventy years I had only nightmares, but I have no nightmares anymore. I feel only gratitude for my life, for every moment I lived. Not only the good moments. I feel gratitude for every moment of my life. I have seen so many miracles.

In other words, blah, blah, blah. Though not for him of course.

There was nothing, which would have been unfortunate, unless nothing was a clue. Was nothing a clue?

Maybe. But it's something that's for sure.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Thu Oct 26, 2017 11:21 pm

Terry Pratchett

It was sad, like those businessmen who came to work in serious clothes but wore colorful ties in a mad, desperate attempt to show there was a free spirit in there somewhere.


Somewhere between sad and pathetic perhaps. We'll, until we hear their side.

Most of the members of the convent were old-fashioned Satanists, like their parents and grandparents before them. They'd been brought up to it, and weren't, when you got right down to it, particularly evil. Human beings mostly aren't. They just get carried away by new ideas, like dressing up in jackboots and shooting people, or dressing up in white sheets and lynching people, or dressing up in tie-dye jeans and playing guitars at people. Offer people a new creed with a costume and their hearts and minds will follow. Anyway, being brought up as a Satanist tended to take the edge off it. It was something you did on Saturday nights. And the rest of the time you simply got on with life as best you could, just like everyone else.

Somewhere between sad and pathetic perhaps. We'll, until we hear their side.

Gods don't like people not doing much work. People who aren't busy all the time might start to think.

Out loud for example.

My name is immaterial, she said.
That's a pretty name, said Rincewind.


Hmm, now that you mention it...

Sometimes the truth is arrived at by adding all the little lies together and deducting them from the totality of what is known.

Someone's truth anyway.

Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life.

You know, after you teach him how to fish.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Fri Oct 27, 2017 3:50 am

Nein

Sorry, time. I need some space.


How about for all of eternity?

It’s not you. It’s your ruthless critique of all that exists.

No, it's that too.

Your rage, sir. Please: not against the machine.

May I suggest Trumpworld?

It’s not that after reading Moby Dick you want to die. Or are ready to die. But when the time comes, maybe you’re more ready to want to die.

Anyone here able to explain why?

Sorry, we’re out of context. But perhaps I could interest you in a fundamental misunderstanding.

In other words, before one of us gets banned.

A beautiful day to change color. Fall gently to the ground. And make a charming little spectacle of your decay.

Not only that but it's nature's way.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Fri Oct 27, 2017 6:39 pm

C.G. Jung

The pendulum of the mind oscillates between sense and nonsense, not between right and wrong.


I like that. And god knows it is appropriate here.

Every form of addiction is bad, no matter whether the narcotic be alcohol, morphine or idealism.

I know: define "addiction".

As a child I felt myself to be alone, and I am still, because I know things and must hint at things which others apparently know nothing of, and for the most part do not want to know.

Well, not as a child perhaps, but I am more than making up for it now.

People will do anything, no matter how absurd, to avoid facing their own souls.

Let me guess: You know what that means.

In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder a secret order.

Let me guess: You know what that means.

Show me a sane man and I will cure him for you.

So, did he?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Fri Oct 27, 2017 8:04 pm

Sad Socrates

No one will ever love me as much as I hate myself.


Let's confirm that.

If it weren't for bad ideas, how would we suffer?

Or, as we say here: "I suffer therefore I am".

I'd rather hoot with the owls than endure the programs of existence humanity has constructed to oppress us.

I guess that's true.

I would hate to be a star, imagine dying for millions of years.

On the other hand, do they know that?

I don't care about who I am.

Or, rather, just enough to point it out.

Don't worry. Don't be happy.

How's that working out for you?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Fri Oct 27, 2017 11:19 pm

Joseph Heller

Oh, I´m not complaining. I know there´s a war on. I know a lot of people are going to have to suffer for us to win it. But why must I be one of them?


For the Vietnam war, you have to double it. At least.

I really do admire you a bit. You're an intelligent person of great moral character who has taken a very courageous stand. I'm an intelligent person with no moral character at all, so I'm in an ideal position to appreciate it.

The new yin and yang.

The night was full of horrors, and he thought he knew how Christ must have felt as he walked through the world, like a psychiatrist through a ward full of nuts.......

Of course he's just paraphrasing the Bible.

What the hell are you getting so upset about? he asked her bewilderedly in a tone of contrite amusement. I thought you didn't believe in God.

I don't, she sobbed, bursting violently into tears. But the God I don't believe in is a good God, a just God, a merciful God. He's not the mean and stupid God you make Him out to be.


Let's file this one under, "covering all the bases".

He was working hard at increasing his life span. He did it by cultivating boredom.

You know, as a last resort.

Maybe I am senile already and people are too kind to tell me....Maybe people have told me, and I'm too senile to remember.

That does narrow it down.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Sat Oct 28, 2017 7:01 pm

Steven D. Levitt

Never, ever think that people will do something just because it is the “right” thing to do.


Anyone here ever done it?

But one need not oppose abortion on moral or religious grounds to feel shaken by the notion of a private sadness being converted into a public good.

Or: But one need not oppose forcing women to give birth on moral or religious grounds to feel shaken by the notion of a private sadness being converted into a public good.

And then there’s the tale of an economist on holiday in Las Vegas. He found himself one night in a bar standing beside a gorgeous woman. Would you be willing to sleep with me for $1 million? he asked her. She looked him over. There wasn’t much to see—but still, $1 million! She agreed to go back to his room. All right then, he said. Would you be willing to sleep with me for $100? A hundred dollars! she shot back. What do you think I am, a prostitute? We’ve already established that. Now we’re just negotiating the price.

Let's decide how reasonable this is.

In Freakonomics, we examined the causes of the rise and fall of violent crime in the United States. In 1960, crime began a sudden climb. By 1980, the homicide rate had doubled, reaching a historic peak. For several years crime stayed perilously high, but in the early 1990s it began to fall and kept falling. So what happened?

In Freakonomics, we identified one missing factor - the legalization of abortion in the early 1970s. The theory was jarring but simple. A rise in abortion meant that fewer unwanted children were being born, which meant fewer children growing up in the sort of difficult circumstances that increase the likelihood of criminality.


Let's decide how reasonable this is.

Simply admit that the future is far less knowable than you think.

I predict that few will.

The brilliant rationalist had encountered a central, frustrating tenet of human nature: behavior change is hard. The cleverest engineer or economist or politician or parent may come up with a cheap, simple solution to a problem, but if it requires people to change their behavior, it may not work. Every day, billions of people around the world engage in behaviors they know are bad for them—smoking cigarettes, gambling excessively, riding a motorcycle without a helmet. Why? Because they want to! They derive pleasure from it, or a thrill, or just a break from the daily humdrum. And getting them to change their behavior, even with a fiercely rational argument, isn’t easy.

In other words, once an objectivist, always an objectivist. Well, not counting me of course.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Sat Oct 28, 2017 11:29 pm

Jade Chang

And what is any artist, really, but someone who doesn't mind being an asshole?


Our kind of asshole for example.

Communists had it all wrong. It wasn't the rich who were imprisoned by their possessions, it was the poor.

You know, if they have any.

Inside the house, where money could reliably fix most problems, things were nearly perfect, but outside, butch nature trampled all over wimpy nurture.

All the more reason for the welfare state.

Every immigrant is the person he might have been and the person he is, and his homeland is at once the place it would have been to him from the inside and the place it must be to him from the outside.

Tell that to, among others, Don Trump.

The world destroys itself and we rebuild it. The destroying is as important as the rebuilding. There can be as much joy in the destruction as the rebirth.

He thought: Let's call this bullshit and move on.

Love saves you, as long as there’s a you to be saved.

Me? Well, obviously there wasn't.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Sun Oct 29, 2017 7:21 pm

Rick Moody

I think literature is best when it's voicing what we would prefer not to talk about.


On the other hand, that could be anything.

Have I mentioned that I expect death around every turn, that every blue sky has a safe sailing out of it, that every bus runs me over, that every low, mean syllable uttered in my direction seems to intimate the violence of murder, that every family seems like an opportunity for ruin and every marriage a ceremony into which calamity will fall and hearts will be broken and lives destroyed and people branded by the mortifications of love?

For some, in other words, a normal day.

The past was so past it hurt.

And it's probably never coming back again.

Words are the oldest information storage and retrieval system ever devised. Words are probably older than the cave paintings in France, words have been here for tens of thousands of years longer than film, moving pictures, video, and digital video, and words will likely be here after those media too. When the electromagnetic pulse comes in the wake of the nuclear blast? Those computers and digital video cameras and videotape recorders that are not melted outright will be plastic and metal husks used to prop open doors. Not so with the utterances of tongues. Words will remain, and the highly complicated and idiosyncratic accounts assembled from them will provide us with the dark news about the blast. The written word will remain, scribbled on collapsed highway overpasses, as a testament to love and rage, as evidence of the wanderers in the ruin.

Right, like that's supposed to comfort us somehow.

People came to the desert because the stars were in the desert, and the stars had yet to be corrupted by man... The stars, it seemed, would crush man in a scenic, gravitational panorama before man would ever corrupt the stars.

For one thing, you've got to reach them first.

If God had designed the orchestra, then the cello was His greatest accomplishment.

That's the big fiddle, isn't it?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Sun Oct 29, 2017 11:17 pm

André Gide

One must allow other people to be right, he used to say when he was insulted, it consoles them for not being anything else.


Besides, every once and a while they actually are.

I hated the homes, the families, all the places where man thinks to find rest.

I know, I used to hate them too.

When I was younger, I used to make resolutions which I imagined were virtuous. I was less anxious to be what I was, than to become what I wished to be. Now, I am not far from thinking that in irresolution lies the secret of not growing old.

Not literally of course. And that's before the part when you're dead.

…the facts of history all appeared to me like specimens in a herbarium, permanently dried, so that it was easy to forget they had once upon a time been juicy with sap and alive in the sun.

Just like all our facts today.

The priest accepted me, I accepted the priest, so everything went off smoothly.

Though maybe not the next time.

In a world in which everyone cheats, it's the honest man who passes for a charlatan.

Let's just all agree that you can take this too far.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Mon Oct 30, 2017 2:34 am

Philosophy Tweets

Seneca

"No man was ever wise by chance."


Maybe. But, along with contingency and change, don't ever underestimate chance.

"Not to be absolutely certain is, I think, one of the essential things in rationality.” Bertrand Russell

Not to be absolutely certain about this too.

“Anticipated spears wound less.” Thomas More

Not counting the ones that kill you.

“While I thought that I was learning how to live, I have been learning how to die." Leonardo Da Vinci

How'd that work out for him?

“The machinery of the world is far too complex for the simplicity of men.” Jorge Luis Borges

No, really.

“Authentic happiness is always independent of external conditions.” Epictetus

Right, keep telling yourself that.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Mon Oct 30, 2017 6:50 pm

Roland Barthes

The grim
egoism (egotism)
of mourning
of suffering


He means on the good days. Or is that just me?

There is an age at which we teach what we know. Then comes another age at which we teach what we do not know; this is called research. Now perhaps comes the age of another experience: that of unlearning, of yielding to the unforeseeable change which forgetting imposes on the sedimentation of the knowledges, cultures, and beliefs we have traversed.

So, have you unlearned much from me?

I cannot countenance the traditional belief that postulates a natural dichotomy between the objectivity of the scientist and the subjectivity of the writer, as if the former were endowed with a 'freedom' and the latter with a 'vocation' equally suitable for spiriting away or sublimating the actual limitations of their situation. What I claim is to live to the full contradiction of my time, which may well make sarcasm the condition of truth.

Or, as Lyssa once put it: Har Har Harr.

To instil into the Established Order the complacent portrayal of its drawbacks has nowadays become a paradoxical but incontrovertible means of exalting it.

Among other things, no shit.

Is the scene always visual? It can be aural, the frame can be linguistic: I can fall in love with a sentence spoken to me: and not only because it says something which manages to touch my desire, but because of its syntactical turn (framing), which will inhabit me like a memory.

Why is this true? And it is you know.

Despite the difficulties of my story, despite discomforts, doubts, despairs, despite impulses to be done with it, I unceasingly affirm love, within myself, as a value.

Me? Maybe in the womb.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Mon Oct 30, 2017 11:13 pm

Charles Seife

Zero is powerful because it is infinity's twin. They are equal and opposite, yin and yang.


For example, in a world of words.

The Greeks couldn't do this neat little mathematical trick. They didn't have the concept of a limit because they didn't believe in zero. The terms in the infinite series didn't have a limit or a destination; they seemed to get smaller and smaller without any particular end in sight. As a result, the Greeks couldn't handle the infinite. They pondered the concept of the void but rejected zero as a number, and they toyed with the concept of the infinite but refused to allow infinity-numbers that are infinitely small and infinitely large-anywhere near the realm of numbers. This is the biggest failure in Greek mathematics, and it is the only thing that kept them from discovering calculus.

I know what you're thinking: That's Greek to me.

The infinite zero of a black hole-mass crammed into zero space, curving space infinitely-punches a hole in the smooth rubber sheet. The equations of general relativity cannot deal with the sharpness of zero. In a black hole, space and time are meaningless.

On the other hand, how many times has he been in one? My guess: zero.

The laws of quantum mechanics treat particles such as the electron as points; that is, they take up no space at all. The electron is a zero-dimensional object, and its very zerolike nature ensures that scientists don't even know the electron's mass or charge.

The laws of quantum Mechanics? Isn't that "for all practical purposes" a contradiction in terms.

In string theory, zero has been banished from the universe; there is no such thing as zero distance or zero time. This solves all the infinity problems of quantum mechanics.

Let's find a string and check it out.

This is the definition of the infinite: it is something that can stay the same size even when you subtract from it.

Aren't definitions just wonderful?!!
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Tue Oct 31, 2017 5:17 pm

Jeanette Winterson

Examine this statement: ‘A woman cannot be a poet.’ Dr Samuel Johnson. What then shall I give up? My poetry or my womanhood?”


Unless of course he's wrong.

What is luck, he said, but the ability to exploit accidents?

As in, "you make your own luck". Though, sure, sometimes you don't have to.

I have shouted to God and the Virgin, but they have not shouted back and I'm not interested in the still small voice. Surely a god can meet passion with passion?

What, before you are judged?

I kissed her and forgot death.

Noted, said the Grim Reaper.

There's no such thing as a limited victory. You must protect what you have won. You must take it seriously.

You know, provided you won.

I think every work of art is an act of faith, or we wouldn't bother to do it. It is a message in a bottle, a shout in the dark. It's saying, I'm here and I believe that you are somewhere and that you will answer if necessary across time, not necessarily in my lifetime.

This is just a fancy way of saying...what exactly?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Tue Oct 31, 2017 7:49 pm

God

In the beginning, Robert Mueller indicted Paul Manafort and Rick Gates; and I saw that it was good.


At least until Don Trump drains the swamp.

This could be the week I give Donald Trump a heart attack.

And [it goes without saying] send him straight to Hell.
You know, if it does go without saying.


The more people retweet this the more likely it is that, despite having blocked Me, Joel Osteen will see God thinks he's a fucking asshole.

So, apparently, God is not omnipotent.

Question: what would you consider more apocalyptic, a mega-volcano eruption or a 10.0 earthquake? Asking for a friend.

His Son probably.

I created mankind to destroy itself over Me.

Let's just say we're still working on it.

People who are wrong are just as sure you are wrong as you are sure they are wrong. The only difference is, they're wrong.

Assuming of course that God really is on your side.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Tue Oct 31, 2017 11:17 pm

Mary Roach

With the rise of classical Greece, the soul debate evolved into the more familiar heart-versus-brain, the liver having been demoted to an accessory role. We are fortunate that this is so, for we would otherwise have been faced with Celine Dion singing "My Liver Belongs to You" and movie houses playing The Liver Is a Lonely Hunter.


We did luck out, didn't we?

I guess I feel the same way about being a corpse. Why lie around on your back when you can do something interesting and new, something useful?

Nope, that doesn't work for me.

Whereas the larger caliber .45 Colt revolver bullets caused the cattle to drop to the ground after three or four shots, the animals shot with smaller caliber .38 bullets failed even after ten shots to drop to the ground. And ever since the U.S. Army has gone confidently into battle knowing that when cows attack, their men will be ready.

Based on a true story? Well, let's just that [as an Army veteran] it wouldn't surprise me.

The human digestive tract is like the Amtrak line from Seattle to Los Angeles: transit time is about thirty hours, and the scenery on the last leg is pretty monotonous.

Until you get to Hollywood of course.

It is difficult to put words to the smell of decomposing human. It is dense and cloying, sweet but not flower-sweet. Halfway between rotting fruit and rotting meat.

He wondered: What was God thinking?

Anne Marie's beauty and style belie a down-and-dirty education in the particulars of practical AI (artificial insemination). She has milked a boar of his prodigious ejaculate--over two hundred milliliters (a cup), as compared to a man's three milliliters--and she has done it with her hand. For, unlike stallions and bulls, boars don't cotton to artificial vaginas. (in part, because their penis, like their tail, is corkscrewed.) AI techs must squeeze the organ in their hand--hard and without letup--for the entire duration of the ejaculation: from five to fifteen minutes. You should see the size of their hands, she says, of the men and women who regular ejaculate boars.

He wondered: What was God thinking?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Wed Nov 01, 2017 5:34 pm

John Cage

If you develop an ear for sounds that are musical it is like developing an ego. You begin to refuse sounds that are not musical and that way cut yourself off from a good deal of experience.


Maybe, but I'd take my chances.

I can't understand why people are frightened of new ideas. I'm frightened of the old ones.

Of course by now [as we all know] there's nothing new under the sun.

The first question I ask myself when something doesn't seem to be beautiful is why do I think it's not beautiful. And very shortly you discover that there is no reason.

On the other hand, this may all be rather subjective.

If something is boring after two minutes, try it for four. If still boring, then eight. Then sixteen. Then thirty-two. Eventually one discovers that it is not boring at all.

Let's start with watching paint dry.

I have nothing to say
and I am saying it
and that is poetry
as I need it.


Here of course that would be philosophy.

In the dark, all cats are black.

Dogs too.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Wed Nov 01, 2017 7:16 pm

Existential Comics

Ghosts are scary because it means that you might have to live forever.


Let's roll the dice, okay?

A nihilist is just someone who is too stupid to be able to defend their commitments.

In other words, no less embodied in dasein.

I've read lots of philosophy, but only found one piece of REAL wisdom: Semantic realism cannot be reconciled with counterfactual statements.

Of course that's just common sense.

Scariest stuff in philosophy:
1. Nietzsche's eternal recurrence
2. Hume's bundle theory
3. Malebranche's occasionalism
4. Camus's good looks


Come on, does 4 really belong?

I feel like Wittgenstein would love the fact that in women's clothing sizes if you're skinnier than "zero" the size is called "double zero".

Let's decide if this is true.

What will end the world:
400: sin
1200: the Mongols
1900: war
2017: for whatever reason we put a tempermental idiot in charge of the nukes…


Who could that be?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Wed Nov 01, 2017 11:23 pm

Ernest Hemingway

The story was writing itself and I was having a hard time keeping up with it.


That ever happened to you? Nope, me neither.

All supposed exterior signs of danger that a bull gives, such as pawing the ground, threatening with his horns, or bellowing are forms of bluffing. They are warnings given in order that combat may be avoided if possible. The truly brave bull gives no warning before he charges except the fixing of his eye on the enemy, the raising of the crest of muscle in his neck, the twitching of an ear, and, as he charges, the lifting of his tail.

Let's run this by PETA.

First you borrow, then you beg.

Either that or steal.

Even when you have learned not to look at families nor listen to them and have learned not to answer letters, families have many ways of being dangerous.

With obvious exceptions of course. And not just me.

Happiness is often presented as being very dull but, he thought, lying awake, that is because dull people are sometimes very happy and intelligent people can go around making themselves and everyone else miserable.

Few things are truer than this.

Fuck literature.

Not all that far removed from "fuck philosophy". Well, the last time I measured it.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Thu Nov 02, 2017 7:55 pm

Neil Gaiman

Gods, religions and national boundaries are absolutely imaginary. They don't tend to exist. As soon as you pull back half a mile and look down at the Earth there are no national boundaries. There aren't even national boundaries when you get down and walk around. They're just imaginary lines we draw on maps. I just get fascinated by people who assume that things that are imaginary have no relevance to their lives.


Actually, they're as real as those in power need them to be.

Richard began to understand darkness: darkness as something solid and real, so much more than a simple absence of light. He felt it touch his skin, questing, moving, exploring: gliding through his mind. It slipped into his lungs, behind his eyes, into his mouth...

Not your run of the mill darkness in other words. Though getting closer and closer with each passing day.

Death’s a funny thing. I used to think it was a big, sudden thing, like a huge owl that would swoop down out of the night and carry you off. I don’t anymore. I think it’s a slow thing. Like a thief who comes to your house day after day, taking a little thing here and a little thing there, and one day you walk round your house and there’s nothing there to keep you, nothing to make you want to stay. And then you lie down and shut up forever. Lots of little deaths until the last big one.

Let's just say that, big or small, it's out there. Looming as it were.

Peas baffled me. I could not understand why grown-ups would take things that tasted so good raw, and then put them in tins, and make them revolting.

And don't get me started on tomatoes.

Rules and responsibilities: these are the ties that bind us. We do what we do, because of who we are. If we did otherwise, we would not be ourselves. I will do what I have to do. And I will do what I must.

We have ours, they have theirs.
The rest then is history.


You are an analog girl, living in a digital world.

The last perhaps. After all, someone has to be.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Thu Nov 02, 2017 8:54 pm

Jan Mieszkowski‏

Ancient philosophy: Why am I not a god?
Enlightenment philosophy: Why am I not a machine?
Modern philosophy: Why am I not a reality TV star?


Postmodern philosophy: All of the above?

When that late-night conversation about Spinoza and Deleuze has to stop because of something people invented called "Monday and work."

Don't you just hate that?

Freedom is
Leibniz: self-rationalization
Kant: self-determination
Hegel: self-transcendence
Sartre: self-delusion
Camus: a joke


Let's note the outlier here.

Optimism: The sun will rise tomorrow.
Pessimism: The sun will rise tomorrow.
Nihilism: The sun will rise the day after tomorrow, too.


You can never go too far with this.

Deleuze: immanence
Derrida: immanent transcendence
Kant: transcendent transcendence
Arendt: imminent transcendence
Nietzsche: imminence


I always get them confused.

Take off your mask and see that
Sartre: there's nothing underneath
Kristeva: the person there isn't you
Beckett: you weren't wearing a mask


Though [obviously] not in that particular order.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Thu Nov 02, 2017 11:33 pm

Jonathan Safran Foer

Home is the place with the most rules.


So, more opportunities to break them.

...I thought, it's a shame that we have to live, but it's a tragedy that we get to live only one life...

You know, if applicable. To you, for example.

No baby knows when the nipple is pulled from his mouth for the last time. No child knows when he last calls his mother “Mama.” No small boy knows when the book has closed on the last bedtime story that will ever be read to him. No boy knows when the water drains from the last bath he will ever take with his brother. No young man knows, as he first feels his greatest pleasure, that he will never again not be sexual. No brinking woman knows, as she sleeps, that it will be four decades before she will again awake infertile. No mother knows she is hearing the word Mama for the last time. No father knows when the book has closed on the last bedtime story he will ever read: From that day on, and for many years to come, peace reigned on the island of Ithaca, and the gods looked favorably upon Odysseus, his wife, and his son.

Clearly, that about covers it.

He knew that I love you also means I love you more than anyone else loves you, or has loved you, or will love you, and also, I love you in a way that no one else loves your, or has loved you, or will love you, and also, I love you in a way that I love no one else, and never have loved anyone else, and never will love anyone else.

Not all that far removed from "I hate you".

Their length could not be measured in years, just as an ocean could not explain the distance we have traveled, just as the dead can never be counted.

Let's just chalk it all up instead to an essentially absurd and meaningless world.

Our response to the factory farm is ultimately a test of how we respond to the powerless, to the most distant, to the voiceless - it is a test of how we act when no one is forcing us to act one way or another. Consistency is not required, but engagement with the problem is.

Or, as likely as not, engagement with the solution. In particular, when it isn't yours.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Fri Nov 03, 2017 7:13 pm

Terry Pratchett

I hate cats.
Death's face became a little stiffer, if that were possible. The blue glow in his eye sockets flickered red for an instant.
I see he said. The tone suggested that death was too good for cat haters.


Sure, it might be.

The Ephebians believed that every man should have the vote (provided that he wasn't poor, foreign, nor disqualified by reason of being mad, frivolous, or a woman). Every five years someone was elected to be Tyrant, provided he could prove that he was honest, intelligent, sensible, and trustworthy. Immediately after he was elected, of course, it was obvious to everyone that he was a criminal madman and totally out of touch with the view of the ordinary philosopher in the street looking for a towel. And then five years later they elected another one just like him, and really it was amazing how intelligent people kept on making the same mistakes.

We can, say, trump them, can't we?

The first draft is just you telling yourself the story.

Or the final draft if you're that good.

Nanny Ogg knew how to start spelling 'banana', but didn't know how you stopped.

Short of death in other words.

And then Jack chopped down what was the world's last beanstalk, adding murder and ecological terrorism to the theft, enticement, and trespass charges already mentioned, and all the giant's children didn't have a daddy anymore. But he got away with it and lived happily ever after, without so much as a guilty twinge about what he had done...which proves that you can be excused for just about anything if you are a hero, because no one asks inconvenient questions.

Not only this but that's how it works in reality too.

So much universe, and so little time.

"Little" doesn't quite do, does it?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Fri Nov 03, 2017 8:12 pm

tiny nietzsche

I wasn't sure about anything so I shaved.


Down there he means.

postmodernism means never having to say you're lying

Not even when they actually prove it. Right, Mr. Trump?

If life stops making sense, you're probably right.

If it ever did, in other words.

it's always darkest before a whole week of this shit

And Bob Mueller is just getting started.

I am in no shape to talk to myself

Let alone to listen.

I don't trust dead people

Not that he'll note any examples.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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Re: a thread for mundane ironists

Postby iambiguous » Fri Nov 03, 2017 11:19 pm

C.G. Jung

There's no coming to consciousness without pain.


Ouch. Among other things.

One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious.

And there will never be a shortage of that, will there?

In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder a secret order.

Until, of course, we actually try to pin that down.

Mistakes are, after all, the foundations of truth, and if a man does not know what a thing is, it is at least an increase in knowledge if he knows what it is not.

What he knows? What she knows? What you know? What I know? What we know? What they know?
But point taken.


As far as we can discern, the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light of meaning in the darkness of mere being.

And then in taking this -- living as comfortably as we can -- to the grave.

Whatever is rejected from the self, appears in the world as an event.

This sounds rather profound. Yet continues to escape me.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

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