Saturday, April 30, 2005

The Pretender

It's the song that I hate to love. Because it's so poignant. Especially the line that says "I'm gonna be a happy idiot, and struggle for the legal tender." Sometimes when the song comes on, I'll turn the radio off. It's a song about mediocrity. About failure. That F- word cuts me to the heart like a knife.

This song was on this morning while I was getting up. I listened until the radio turned itself off in the middle of the song, telling me that I'm late for work.

You gotta love the Rosicrucians for being such Ivory Tower philosophers. It takes some real life problems like my own to figure out how to have Universal Unconditional Love for all the happy idiots and angry idiots in the world. I wondered if I ever got going to the point where I could quit the paper route, what would be next. Now that all my worthless friends have gone away, would I find any new friends? Maybe I'd even consider dating again. It's personal relationships where we learn to practice love so that we might have a chance to know Universal Unconditional Love.

Can I have Universal Unconditional Love for the lady that complained that I missed her paper on Thanksgiving Day, when she was watching out the window until I delivered it 13 minutes late? Can I have Universal Unconditional Love for my former best friend when he's disrespectfully feeding his computer game addiction while my cat is dying in my arms a few feet away? Can I have Universal Unconditional Love for another friend who would rather waste her life away smoking pot and screwing bar guys than work together with me to get a new job? Can I have Universal Unconditional Love for the FTP leechers who uploaded some 10 GB worth of stolen software and music to my personal computer for all their friends to share? Can I have Universal Unconditional Love for my former girlfriend because she wanted nothing more than sex from our relationship? Can I have Universal Unconditional Love for all the former employers who laid me off so they could cash in their own golden parachutes? Can I have Universal Unconditional Love for the terrorists who messed up our economy on 9/11? Can I have Universal Unconditional Love for society for producing people such as these?

The answer is not "No", but "When, and How?" A question answered with more questions.

Credits to the AstraWeb lyrics search engine, here's the lyrics to Jackson Browne - The Pretender

I'm going to rent myself a house
In the shade of the freeway
I'm going to pack my lunch in the morning
And go to work each day
And when the evening rolls around
I'll go on home and lay my body down
And when the morning light comes streaming in
I'll get up and do it again
Say it again

I want to know what became of the changes
We waited for love to bring
Were they only the fitful dreams
Of some greater awakening
I've been aware of the time going by
They say in the end it's the wink of an eye
And when the morning light comes streaming in
You'll get up and do it again

Caught between the longing for love
And the struggle for the legal tender
Where the sirens sing and the church bells ring
And the junk man pounds his fender
Where the veterans dream of the fight
Fast asleep at the traffic light
And the children solemnly wait
For the ice cream vendor
Out into the cool of the evening
Strolls the pretender
He knows that all his hopes and dreams
Begin and end there

Ah the laughter of the lovers
As they run through the night
Leaving nothing for the others
But to choose off and fight
And tear at the world with all their might
While the ships bearing their dreams
Sail out of sight

I'm going to find myself a girl
Who can show me what laughter means
And we'll fill in the missing colors
In each other's paint-by-number dreams
And then we'll put our dark glasses on
And we'll make love until our strength is gone
And when the morning light comes streaming in
We'll get up and do it again
Get it up again

I'm going to be a happy idiot
And struggle for the legal tender
Where the ads take aim and lay their claim
To the heart and the soul of the spender
And believe in whatever may lie
In those things that money can buy
Thought true love could have been a contender
Are you there?
Say a prayer for the pretender
Who started out so young and strong
Only to surrender

Monday, April 18, 2005

Headline News

Thanks For The Adrenaline Rush, Officer

I only pulled over so the car behind me could get past, and wouldn’t be confused by me darting from side to side across the road, throwing things out the window. I didn’t know you were a cop until you turned on your lights, and shined your spotlight in my mirrors. But thanks for the adrenaline rush. I really needed that. My coffee didn’t quite do the trick this morning. I was about to go to sleep out here at 3:30 AM. Really, I don’t think you know any more who I am, or what I’m doing out here than I know who you are or why you’re following me, until we have such an encounter.

Headline News

Flashback to last Wednesday, 4/13/05. I woke up with this impending feeling of doom. Like something cataclysmic might happen. Wondering if the disaster would be manmade or natural, I turned on CNN to watch events unfold in real time while I finished my taxes.

Britney’s Got A Bun In The Oven!

I never quite understood the teen idol phenomenon. It doesn’t mean much to me that Britney Spears is pregnant, or what that means for her career. That CNN had to have expert guests with opposing views arguing with each other whether the pregnancy was a mere career enhancing move, or if the child would become more of a fashion accessory was just overkill.

Finger Found In Wendy’s Chili

In yet another inane CNN headline news story, some woman reportedly “bit into” a finger in her bowl of chili at Wendy’s. I don’t know what size spoonfuls of chili the woman was shoveling into her mouth, but I think a finger would be noticeable enough not to actually bite into. And why did they call the chili "stew?" Stew and chili are about as different as a news anchor and a cameraman.

In an obviously related story, at an earlier date another woman was attacked by a leopard, and had her finger bitten off. I can imagine the Wendy’s employees keeping the leopard in the back room waiting with a chili bowl for the finger to pass.

Killer Denies Government’s Right To Kill

Eric Rudolph was sentenced for his bombings of abortion clinics and Olympic Park in Alabama and Georgia. In his statement, he declared

"Abortion is murder. And when the regime in Washington legalized, sanctioned and legitimized this practice, they forfeited their legitimacy and moral authority to govern."

So, it’s wrong for the government to legalize murder by abortion, and that means it’s okay for him to go around killing whoever he wants.

And Your Tax Bill Is…

I finally got my cataclysm. I owe more money in taxes than I can pay. What am I going to do about that? Use the magic second mortgage card! Okay, now that that thing’s full, how am I going to pay for next year’s taxes? I can feel my sanity slipping away.

As a paper carrier, I’m not an employee of the Denver Newspaper Agency (the DNA). No. I’m contract labor. So they don’t withhold income tax, social security tax, or unemployment tax. None of that. I have to pay my own taxes at the end of the year: April 15th. Since my income just almost pays for the bills, I have to come up with another $150 per month to pay my taxes. Again, I can feel my sanity slipping away.

Thursday, April 14, 2005


Another series of shows on The History Channel is Band of Brothers. I only get to watch bits and pieces of it, now and then, because of my schedule. There was some guy -- I think his name was Buck -- who had a mental breakdown when he saw his friend on the ground, dead.

The reason I don't have many friends is because none of them stick around long enough to be friends. Or I'm never at one place long enough to make any friends, so I don't bother.

When Celeste and I were together, she was worried that something would happen, and I would leave her. I told her that I would never leave her, that she would leave me before I left her. Three months into the relationship, she told me that she didn't want to do this anymore.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Basketball Barrages and Lawnmower Fights

There's been a lot of overwhelming obstacles to overcome in completing the last couple weeks of my web writing class. The research required for the article that I chose to write was extensive; almost "too much to chew", compared to other students' articles. I still need to get my taxes done by the end of the week, now that my final project is finished. We just had one of those killer spring snow storms, where I got battered with basketball-sized snowflakes all morning for two days while delivering the paper route. The computer took two hours to reboot after the power failure from the snow storm. The fatigue was overwhelming, and my body demanded another five hours of sleep. I still need to ship the last two days of ebay sales. And if I don't get my hair cut soon, I think I'll loose it and give myself one of those awful "self-cuts." I wouldn't want to come in looking like that other guy, you know, the one who looks like he lost a fight with a lawn mower. I haven't commented on the reading or lectures for the last two weeks either.

Oh, but I'm not s'posed to write about myself. And I'm s'posed to bring universal Love to the situation too. Uh, oh, okay.

I never got BazaarMart upgraded and Froogle-ized either. I was s'posed to have that done by the first of April, so April would be enough of an indication of whether I should try to find something to replace the paper route. I can't afford to keep the paper route anymore. Not with gas at $2.14. Not with getting more complaints from having to pay more attention to the yellow bag part of the route than the part that pays. Well, maybe. Maybe I don't have a choice. Maybe... Maybe... Maybe I'm gonna have a baby.

Saturday, April 09, 2005

War Games

When I come home from my paper route at between 5:00 AM and 6:30 AM, there are no meaningful TV programs on to watch while I have my breakfast. Every other channel has infomercials on, but the History Channel has something worth watching. I guess that’s why I started watching the History Channel more than anything else.

They’ve had a series on about The Last Days of WW II. The war ended this week, 60 years ago. The atrocities were horrible. When they freed the concentration camps, there were naked bodies stacked up like cords of firewood. The living prisoners were little more than skeletons covered with parchment. Some were so weak they could do nothing more than blink. They made lampshades from human skin. When the President Roosevelt toured the camps, he wept. General Patton was livid with anger and grief. The Third Reich had become an edifice for evil, the likes of which the world had never seen before. I wept to hear the story. Let this story always be remembered, and may there never be such experiences ever again.

That’s WW II. Some said that the American Civil War was worse. 600,000 people killed in the Civil war. It was the bloodiest war in American history. Their weapons weren’t efficient enough to kill outright. People would get bullets lodged in their bones, and suffer gangrene. They’d have to have their arms or legs amputated. And the doctors didn’t have anesthesia. Can you imagine someone slowly sawing off an arm or a leg? If they didn’t die from the battle wounds, they would die of shock or disease later on.

And yet, the computer game makers are selling games that depict these war experiences. Kids play war games purely for entertainment. Adults are entertained by playing war with each other, or with the computer. I could give a link or two, but just do an Internet search on “computer games,” and see how many of them are based on some kind of war, either historic or futuristic.

Maybe you’ve never been to war, or weren’t alive yet in WW II or the Civil War. Maybe you don’t watch the History Channel. Or maybe you can’t help but to play the games, ‘cause they’re so addicting. You don’t know what else to do; you’re frustrated or bored with your life.

Consider this. Take your most painful, most traumatic experience in life. Have you lost your job? Tried and tried and tried, and can’t get a new job? Your lover left you? Your pet died? A family member died? Had to have an abortion? Now take that experience, and compress it down into a one-hour episode, and make a carnival ride out of it. Let somebody else make money by other people being entertained by your experience of having to wonder if your husband or wife was still alive in the 9/11 rubble. Let someone sell tickets to a recreation of helplessly watching someone die, trapped inside a burning vehicle. “Oh, I’m going bankrupt! I don’t know how I’ll make a living! Wheeeee! This is so fun!” “My career is ruined! Now I have to make a living delivering newspapers! Woohoo!” "I know, let's do the divorce thing again! That was a blast! Yeah!"

This is why I don’t play computer games, other than cards anymore. It’s just not right to be entertained by other people’s misery. It doesn’t matter if the war is fictional or futuristic. War is Hell. It’s not supposed to be entertaining.

Monday, April 04, 2005

There Will Be Changes

I didn't mention it in yesterday's post, but I had a most unpleasant time delivering Sunday's paper route. The boss had required that I get all the "Special" papers -- the DPS's and the RNS's, which are in yellow bags, and go to the people who don't want the paper -- to the right houses. Before, I knew that the difference was insignificant, and I just delivered whatever I could wherever I was supposed to regardless of DPS or RNS status.

The difficulty with getting all the yellow bags to the right houses on a Sunday is that the papers are so big and awkward. I can only get 28 papers at a time in the front seat. With 248 papers to deliver, this means I have to reload nine times. And having to get all the yellow bag papers to the right houses, I actually sat down and counted out the distribution of yellow bag papers and orange bag papers for each of the nine reloads of the paper route.

Or so it started out. All this extra counting, and re-counting, and reloading a special distribution -- it takes a lot of extra time. I was an hour late by the time I finished. Add to this the fact that Daylight Savings Time started, and I didn't realize it, and nobody told me to come in an hour earlier, or if I needed to or not. No. Instead, the boss tells me to make sure to get the yellow bag papers to the right houses.

Did you realize that there are no public restrooms in a residential neighborhood at 4:00 AM? I did, not long after I started this paper route. By the time I got to my usual secret bladder relief point, the sun was up, and people were about. I decided to hold it. Bad idea. I was gritting my teeth, screaming cross-eyed, while trying to count the distribution from the route list for the next reload segment. I ended up emptying my bladder into my coffee cup. Hey, it's better than making a small lake in the cab of my truck, or in my pants, or on somebody's front lawn. At least I can run the coffee cup through the dishwasher, which I promptly did when I got home.

The whole sitiation pisses me off, pun intended or not. I know, there's some symbolism going on there. That's why things like this happen; to tell us to deal with problems.

I've decided that some things have to change.

To start with, in order to handle possible emergency urination problems, I'm taking along a special, large water bottle, dedicated as an emergency urinal.

And, now that I have to take the extra time to figure out the yellow bag distribution for a Sunday, maybe I'll just come in an extra half hour early on Sundays, and count out the exact distribution and reload points for each of the nine reloads of my route. Okay, maybe that's a little extreme Virgo-esque. At least I knowI have this Virgo tendency for exactitude. I think my boss is a Virgo and doesn't know it. Maybe instead of counting an exact distribution for each of the nine reloads, I'll load an estimated yellow bag distribution, and carry over the leftovers to the next load. There's a couple of ways to handle it, and I'll see which works better.

While I was considering all these solution to problems of the physical world, something came to mind that I should work on. I should be bring Love to situations like this.

When I came in this morning, there were two complaints from the Sunday route. I get a $40 bonus each two-week pay period, as long as I don't have too many complaints. Two complaints blows my $40 bonus. I haven't lost my bonus since I was training on this route. Okay, so now it doesn't matter if I get complaints or not, since I've already blown my bonus. I'm free to try some creative solutions to the Sunday distribution problem next Sunday, without having to worry about blowing my bonus, since my bonus is already blown anyway. And I'm supposed to figure out how to bring Love to this situation.

I don't remember when I decided that Love is the creative power of the Universe, but it was at least a few years ago. I found confirmation of this idea in some of the mystical literature I've been reading in the last year. In The Hathor Material, channelled by Tom Kenyon, they say that they're "Masters of Love and Sound from an ascended intergalactic civilization." One of the most important exercises described in that book is how to qualify your personal subtle energy with universal, unconditional love and acceptance.

That might be a bit difficult when you have to urinate into your coffee cup while counting out a distribution on an already late paper route, or whatever your own personal challenge might be. There are some other excercises aimed at, well, the chapter title is "Stabilizing in Chaos." The exercise there is one of essentially connecting with the earth below, and the cosmos above. I've done this, and this is easy for me. I do this now in difficult situations. It helps.

I went to Tom Kenyon's web site, and was looking for more information about the Hathors, and found what looks like a Hathor blog. Go there, and look for the message dated January 2, 2005, and the accompanying channelled message dated June 21, 2004. It talks about dramatic earth changes, and how to be ready. Read through that whole message. It's important.

Another channeled book talks about the power of Love is Kryon. Actually, it's a series of books, from Lee Carrol channelling Kryon. In book one, "The End Times", Kryon says,

LOVE IS POWER! Your word is inarticulate and poor for this concept. Other Earth languages at least have many kinds of words for this energy. Love is not a word, or just a feeling. It is a power source! It is energy. You can call on it, turn it off and on, store it up, send it out and focus it for many uses. It is always available and will never fail you. It is the promise of the universe! It is the common thread that runs things. It is time you started to see this... and I mean in the universal sense that it really is your time! You are at last being given permission to use and understand this power source, and you have earned it!

Kryon book two "Don't Think Like A Human!", chapter two is "About Love."

Kryon has a web site. It must have been one of those messages, maybe the one titled A New Dispensation where I learned that we should meet challenges with love and compassion.

I remember Richard Bach's "Johnathon Livingston Seagull". There's a passage where his mentor tells him to give love everyone, even those who are filled with anger and hatred. He says, "You don't love the hatred and evil, of course. You have to practice and see the real [person], the good in every one of them and to help them see it in themselves. Thats what I mean by Love."

And last, I remember a few years ago when the Rosicrucians presented a discourse. The nature of it was, "What do you do when someone that you care about is on a path of self-destruction?" Some of the answers given were, not just during that discourse, but at other times in my life:
  • Try and help them. If it doesn't work, then give up. They need to suffer some more. It's their karma to learn the hard way.
  • Don't try to help people like that. You can catch bad karma from them, just like you can catch the cold or a flu.
  • Life is suffering. All is as it should be. Don't change anything.
  • Here's a slip of paper that says "Cosmic Law Fulfills." Put that somewhere where you see it often. Things will change.
  • You learn through suffering. Suffering makes you solve problems and create solutions.
  • (the most useful so far) Preceed your advice with the phrase "If it were me, I would..."
My answer to all this is that when you or someone you love is suffering, you don't pass judgement. You don't give up. You offer whatever love and assistance you can. And you keep offering your love, no matter what. And whether the loved one is suffering, angry, successful, or even dying, you offer your love always, and forever, no matter what.

Sunday, April 03, 2005

God As Creation

There's something I've been wanting to talk about. Not about how the latest paper route campain is such a pain in the... uh, neck. Not how the web writing class is taking all my time. Not even how the web store is such a pain in the -- uh, neck -- to get started, re-installed, upgraded, built up, and so forth.

I realized at an early age that the conventional Christian view of God was all messed up. Maybe it was when the preacher at Grandma's funeral was talking about how Jesus would come through the clouds, and the dead people would get up and rise up into the air, to be with Jesus -- up in the air. Like a helium baloon, or a helicopter. It sounds like Night of the Living Dead, or night of the flying dead. What would the dead people do with Jesus up in the air? Fly around and throw body parts down on people?

Okay, enough nonsense. And this doesn't have much to do with the Pope (John Paul II) dying yesterday either. And I don't want to talk about God being some -- being -- siting on a golden throne up in the clouds. That's about the same thing as Jesus In The Air With The Dead People (to the tune of the Beatles' "Lucy in the sky with diamonds")

See, I had formulated this idea that when God created the Universe, he gave of himself into his creation. In creating the Universe, God became the creation. That's when I was, maybe 14 years old.

It's not such a terribly difficult concept. On the surface. For years, though, I've felt that I understood this concept intellectually. But I never really felt it. I never really knew this to be a truth. The mystics talk about a noetic experience -- one which can't be described in words, because we lack the experience and the vocabulary to deal with such a unique experience. The kind of intuitive impression where you just know something, without having to explain why or how; it just is. That's what I was missing here.

So, studying some of the mystical literature -- you probably think of it as "new age" junk -- I started to find confirmation of these ideas. There was the teacher who explained that the old Hebrew name for God, Jehovah, Yaweh, was used as a verb, not as a noun or pronoun. Yaweh means "I Am Godding," "I Am Creating," "I Am That I Am."

The Druids fascinated me. The Wicca people kind of bothered me. I don't know why. The Druids had this belief that spirit inhabited the forest, the creatures, the trees, the rocks. The Innuit in the Pacific Northwest had similar beliefs.

I have this book, The Hathor Material, by Tom Kenyon. It's a channeled book, from this ascended civilization called the Hathors. There's a connection to an ancient egyptian cow-headed goddes called Hathor. Here, just let me quote from the book, p. 125:

"... it is not that God created the Earth and the Universe so much as God is the process of creation itself and that God is inherent in the physical matter of the Universe. From our understanding, where you are -- God is. Creation is."

In the sacred Hindu text, the "Aitareya Upanashad",

Before the world was created, the Self
Alone existed; nothing whatever stired.
Then the Self thought: "Let me create the world."
He brought forth all the worlds out of himself:
Ambhas, high above the sky; Marichi,
The sky; Mara, the middle region that is earth;
And Apa, the realm of waters below.

From Genesis 1:1-2 in the Bible,

In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
And the earth was without form, and void; and Darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.

From John 1:1-4

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
The same was in the beginning with God.
All things were made by him; and without him was not anything made that was made.
In him was life; and the life was the light of men.

Well, I gotta go. That's enough for a blog entry. If you look around, you'll find some confirmation of the idea of God As Creation in more places than one.