Herd Dissatisfaction .

Checking back on my writings I notice I last attempted to expound some self styled philosophy back in July. I lead a quiet life in relative safety , but things get on my goat like scammers ( what is it with them ? Greed, avarice, envy …what ? ) and Covid 19 causing my carefully planned holiday to go awry – Covid19 and all the other pains in the butt on the evening news and how they affect our lives.

Most people and the rest of the animals must have noticed things have been out of wack over the last year or so. It’s fairly safe to say this day in November 2020 is seriously different for many more people on our little blue planet than it was in November 2019….ironically, maybe not so different as in 1919, but that was a Spanish virus.

Maybe with the speeding up of life changes and electronic shrinking of the globe over the last century we have been exposed to challenges which funnel down and force often unwanted variations into the way individuals live. I expect many folk pull the covers over their heads and hope for the best as the feeling of helplessness envelopes them. This is obviously one course of action, but for those who have no covers to hide under through no fault of their own, and there are many, trying to find a way out must be seriously distressing. To my mind those who continue rolling along without the need to vary the daily schedule would be almost as rare as rocking horse droppings these days….or they may be living in a cave.That may be a real option in the future.

Hopefully, as ‘ they’ want us to believe, we are on the up side heading for a better future, but I’m not holding my breath. Huge changes are going on at this very moment and to my mind these changes are major and will have a lasting effect on all Earth bound animals.

It seems every aspect of the human existence is being strained and I would hazard a guess that most average people can’t comprehend the size of the problem. It feels to be so aggressive and overwhelming fueled by anger, speculation and shock-jocks. We try to disseminate the advance of IT and wind up confused by the Internet, the disruption of politics and we have to vote or protest, the diseases which put lives and business on hold, the temperature where we are physically and mentally confronted by ‘natural’ disasters, religious and racial confrontation where we see killing and hatred, under constant surveillance recorded in what we do or where we go, the pop up wars between ego driven dictators and their subjugated followers, the disregard for life – human and animal …the list is endless.

It would be nice to believe the average person is simply trying to get along with his fellow man in the sphere of his family and community, but it would seem that may be somewhat naive and even a bit of a luxury. The vortex of change, lack of trust, endless greed, the need for possession and inflated ego hammers continually at our doors 24/7 and it will continue for some time. That could simply be Nature at work or possibly a large helping of herd dissatisfaction. Who has the answers?

Life is what you make it so chuck the snags on the plate , butter the bread, grab a beer and let’s have a barbie – there are so many things to discuss!

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WE aren’t all the same

It’s a fact and although many of us may believe in something or agree there are always little bits of doubt, hesitancy, confidence, conscience and lots of other things starting with C or P or F that we have in our minds when deciding to persue the challenge…it’s just natural because every individual is different. Think DNA. It’s amazing to see a full TV shot of an army marching past and you think …did they do that on the green screen or they all individuals? They are all so similar and well trained they seem to our eyes to be multiples of the one person.

What about animals, fish and birds? Many have the same colouring , exactly the same colouring in fact , move the same way and yet they have many different personalities and probably lots of other differences except when it comes to escaping predators …that’s when they hope they all look the same and bunch up tight hoping they won’t be chosen as the next meal by their pursuer.

Grouping can be a serious problem. He’s with that group, she’s with this group how does it all start? I suppose our earliest training in life comes from our parents wanting us to fit the mold they think we should fit because it’s what they know from their lives or it’s what is ‘best for us’. How many times do we see super achievers or well balanced amazing people being our mentors and yet they may exhibit different features from our usual set of physical expectations. Look at the Para Olympics for example.

It works the other way too when some people go to extreme lengths to modify their natural selves until they resemble strange and unusual characters who quite often don’t have the other faculties to make themselves interesting and they finish up in the ‘strange’ group.

The thing is it’s lots of fun to people watch and we all do it to some degree for different reasons. You can have an enjoyable time with a friend over coffee quietly checking out those who pass you by when they have no idea you are doing it. The problems arise when they realise they are being scrutinized and passive rapidly escalates to aggressive.

We all have physical and emotional differences which make us the fantastic creatures we are because without these individual traits people over the centuries for whatever reason, have made huge inroads into how our world operates whether they were right or wrong and they become part of the heritage, teaching us which path to follow which influences what we are today. I don’t think they looked at their reflection and thought they seemed just right to become a doctor or a pilot or a soldier or whatever …it just happened they had the right stuff at the right time to do what they did.

Modern society follows shallow things like beauty and skin colour and physical size to be the basis for success, but again check out some of the people who were heroic or triumphant or amazingly competent and successful…quite a few differences between them and let’s be honest, some of them weren’t all that pretty.

So all we have to do is listen and think and make up our own minds which path to follow. If you disagree don’t throw a brick, but find a way to present a different side of things being less vocal and maybe more courageous by finding a peaceful way of completing your quest without aggression. So much bad feeling and hatred out there and you have to ask why? We need to cool the jets and be a little less vocal and rude to each other or none of our problems will be solved or reduced. Think about it the next time you are people watching and just know there are more good people than bad walking past you no matter what they may look like.

Strange how things happen

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Some things are quite difficult to fathom …for example when WordPress experts change formats and utilise words for their ‘new and improved systems’ it may be perfectly fine for people 11 to 35 years of age , but for oldies on computers – not so good. We have a shortage of time and constant changes to something that already works means we have to waste valuable moments trying to figure out WTF is going on each time we use it. I will never convince the ‘constant change’ generation that if it ain’t broke then don’t fix it ….so I will tell my story.

The small cat you see above is Rona – named after the virus. The day Corona Virus prevented me from flying to Darwin to see my family was the day she came into my life. Lock-down is quite a problem for oldsters particularly males who live alone and a hobby to pass the time can be beneficial such as gardening and cutting grass. I was enjoying that pursuit when the weedy I was using drove a small black missile from beneath a bottle-brush bush at such speed I could not identify what sort of critter it was , nor did I see where it went.

Turns out it went under my old house and the next day I heard a strange mewling sound beneath the floorboards. With the Virus and the government forcing us to stay at home I figured to fill my time in I would try and coax it out and maybe make a friend. I pushed a small container of water just under the house and could hear her lapping it up which was a good sign. A day and a half later she got up the courage to come out and meet me tempted by some warm chicken on a moving piece of cardboard.

She was about ten days old, her eyes were still opening I thought, painfully thin and obviously what is known as a ‘feral’ or wildcat, but to be on her own at that age seemed strange as there were no others about , nor a mother seeking her baby. I presumed she was unwanted and left at my home as a pet for the old bloke.

Anyway, it looked like I had a cat. The same feeding ploy worked to get her inside the flat and on the third day she was brave enough to come up on my lap as I sat in the wheelchair. We became friends immediately as she purred sitting on my knee in the sun. I had a pet door already and jacked it open allowing her to take off to her safe spot under the house any time she got spooked . Rona spent time running along the outer edges of every room always ready to retreat, but as her confidence and trust increased she discovered all sorts of things to do. In a short time she became quite adept at riding on my shoulder and knew exactly what time her food should be served. I set up toilet facilities in the laundry and she used them immediately which pleased me because I didn’t have to worry about accidents.

Eventually she was using the house as her own and following me wherever I went inside or out. I felt wanted waking up hearing her loud purring on the pillow next to me. One morning as I rolled over and said good morning to her she extended her paw and touched me on the forehead and I’m sure she smiled. Quite a moment for me. I was constantly entertained and enjoyed every minute of her company.

She loved the morning sun whilst exploring the garden sniffing plants and stalking weeds, stones and beetles. At night before lights out as I read my book she used my bed as a trampoline and often developed such speed she shot off the end out of control crashing into the wall with a loud thump , appearing seconds later only to do it again.

When I was using the computer she found a warm mess of cables to sleep on and occasionally she would look around the screen to check I was still there. Chairs and beds were used as scratching posts and she often swung like a small monkey hanging on with one arm from material covered armrests. Eventually she turned the house into a race track bounding off anything that gave her impetus and speed and often somersaulting to a sudden stop against stereos or book shelves and other hard surfaces.

I am not in a position to have a pet and I knew somewhere in the not too distant future we would be saying goodbye. Heart and head were in battle, but eventually scrunching up my feelings I took her to a visiting vet from a town a hundred kliks away and asked if he could find her a nice home. He agreed to do just that. For a week or more after she left I missed her company beside me wherever I went , her purring and the warm lump in my bed, someone to talk to about anything at all, the sound of her belting around the house and her constant quest for more food and I had that horrible empty feeling when one loses a pet. We had been together for just 57 days , which passed so rapidly I lost track of time pretty much ignoring the outside world concerning myself only with her as we bonded together.

A week later I tentatively rang the vet and was told she had been adopted by a vet and her fiance from the practice and was becoming quite an item at smoko as they discussed what mischief she had been up to at home. My relief was huge knowing she was safe and would have a good life.

Had the Virus not come I would have flown to Darwin, she would possibly have starved to death and I would have been none the wiser. We are all animals of course and often , even for a short time, variations of the species cross paths and become really good friends – sometimes for life. Thank you Rona , the little bat faced cat , for helping me cope with the loneliness of lock-down.

Rona came to town.

Rona Virus 3

Rona the virus has become a sensation. From her alleged natural milieu of  cooked bats consumed by humans she has made her presence felt with a vengeance across the the world. The task to dissuade her from her vicious tirade has become the most serious endeavor taken on by medical teams for many decades. A tiny colourless dot ( in reality ) has bought this amazing planet to a screeching halt.

Now although death and sickness are certainly products of her visit there are other serious by – products which have taken hold during the last few months.  Man is a social animal and obviously an ideal carrier for Rona. The change in social behaviour alone thanks to her will support behavioral studies for years.

To dissuade her from traveling the world, inhabitants of it have done the opposite and stopped traveling  in practically every form we know. Humans have been ordered to separate staying six feet apart and not to clump for any reason. The places we purchase goods and services have been closed, maybe for some – never to open again. Sport, the natural element for those who find life a bit blah without it has vapourised, the stadiums in all countries are ghostly quiet, devoid of their raucous fanatics who have been forced to reside indoors watching replays of matches played years ago , with commentary from fattened up, grey haired men who actually played in those games.

The mothers and fathers are trying home schooling many verging on tempestuous and unnatural personality changes. Thrown into a tangle of mysterious problems they never thought they would have to un-tangle. Their screens are the answer education experts say, but what of those without education, no internet, five children from four to fifteen, how’s that working out for ya? How will this reflect in ten years on our progress? Are we stopping brilliant minds from germinating just as they hit the crest of the wave of understanding?

And the economy is bending, creaking with pressure which will release with frightening reality  in the next short time when some people now without jobs thanks to Rona,  will have to rely on welfare or generosity to survive.  Let’s hope there will be some extraordinary  uplift from  clever minds dripping with IT solutions to raise them from the quagmire of depression and self destruction.

Oh there will be problems , and large they will be, maybe too large for a while as some politicians spruik their solutions and others , more secure , wait behind and  hope the trough stays full enough for them to keep feeding.

Rona has given the planet a breather and the difference can be seen from space so it is no furphy. Maybe Mother Nature ( my idol) had an idea to slow the madness of human destruction and greed and  produced this microbe to demonstrate how little it takes to reduce many people to aimless, wasted and  frustrated forms of life. The other animals ( and some exceptional humans) seem to be doing well, the seas are clearing a bit, the cities have cleaner air, …can it all be contrived rehabilitation or is it as the tin foil hat people say  a man made malady to reduce the population of Earth?

The answer may  possibly be somewhere in between.  Humans can use this as a wake up call to respect the environments they inhabit , to utilise their resources to benefit their own population, keeping them employed , working, busy , happy and fulfilled knowing this is the only place we have to live so we had better look after it.

Maybe we will learn from this small destructive microbe that war, greed and power are equally damaging and it’s time humans reflected on how tenuous and brief life can be here on Mother Earth –  it’s that simple.

Let’s face it we have experienced what many  considered impossible and we would do well to remember this time in history.  I believe we humans are , for the most part,  animals who are good in spirit and courage and will find a way to live life in peace and harmony after Rona has been quelled.

 

 

All that Jazz

Skinny Tuba 2

Due to unfortunate circumstances my activities have been confined to a smaller and  more compact world. I’m told two or three weeks for the repairs to take place. There are a lot of negatives when you find yourself in this situation such as how to do stuff around the house, shopping , washing etc , but I decided on the second day of confinement to chase the positives.

Music was first of course as it is my life blood.   I stumbled on to a jazz band named Skinny Tuba on youTube putting me into the sort of moment where you think ‘if I had another shot at life I’d be like them’.  Never been big on jazz,  but I tell you what this little band is  a real feel good group. To watch them play is like seeing a really good movie, seeing animals playing, feeling rain after months of dry …I don’t know, they just seem happy doing what they love…and you get the vibe. There is a very relaxed dog with them too so they are good people.

The leader Shaye Cohn is an attractive and multi talented musician and her band is red hot. She controls them with slight movements of her right leg, her head and her body whilst playing trumpet. Seems to work really well.

Watching their clips I began feeling much happier and forgot the pain and discomfort. There are people dancing in some of them. One couple dancing to Storyville Blues –  her in a red pant suit and he with a Johnny Cash tee shirt get right into the moment….bless em!

The music from Skinny Tuba seems to have a inherent sort of joy to it and there are no arguments with how it flows …they settle in as smooth as a deck of cards and the solos are particularly enjoyable. The washboard bloke is a classic. So although I am still not fully into jazz I will add Skinny Tuba to my play list and feel good every time I hear their stuff.

I also found another ‘feel good’ option.  Get a Ched biscuit, swipe it with French Onion dip and place a chunk of Artichoke Heart marinated in oil on the top…hmmm.. scrumptious. You can also use sun dried tomatoes also marinated in oil …more bite,  but so nice.

It is unusual to find these sort of treats living in the bush …maybe the shop got their orders messed up I’m not sure , because when I went back to buy some more I was told ‘no longer available’ . The disappointment returned as I looked for alternatives…Coon cheese? olives in every configuration , tomato? Gherkins or bread and butter cucumber ?

Oh well I suppose I can go back and enjoy Skinny Tuba with a Ched biscuit and French Onion dip whilst I wait for my body to repair itself.

PERSPECTIVE

What does it mean

Sometimes I think and sometimes I don’t,

There are times when I know

But there’s more when I don’t.

I live in a place where there is no want

I have more in my life

Than eighty percent of the world –

I also have my two beautiful girls

Their children are like me too,

Living life with comfort and opportunity

But I’m not boasting, not shouting out

The thing is I still want more –

Food for the starving , peace for those at war,

It sounds patronising and slightly trite

To say I want less animals killed,

And the kids all home at night.

Man is greedy and heading for a fall-

It may be soon – or never at all

And I don’t do much about it.

I could I suppose, wave banners

I could write to pollies and papers,

I could attract attention to me

On social media with bad manners,

Gain publicity with outlandish words

And use it all to further a cause.

Thing is I just want to be quiet

I don’t have an agenda

And no special diet –

I don’t bet on horses

If I need it I’ll buy it,

I don’t support a team

So what is all this about?

What does it all mean?

The Earth is in control

Not a man, not a god.

It will show us in time

When the going gets tough

That anything any man says or does

Will never be enough.

A foot too far!

Sore footBlogging to me is simply writing about a notion that has been  buzzing around in my head for a while in an interesting and light hearted manner.   My head I should add, is not a repository for deep and riveting insights about how to get through the day , depression or any other barrier that presents itself in life. What it produces will never become a reference point for knowledge or instruction, however, the thoughts are original and occasionally  interesting in post form – as with many blogs.  Problem is, those thoughts don’t get written up at regular intervals and as a consequence, although I love ‘komtack’ I don’t visit it all that often.

However, with time on my side, I checked it today and  noticed there are advertisements for bloody foot repairs and maintenance scattered all through it. Now I don’t have much of an idea of how to fancy the blog up with ads, but I see on other blog sites nicely presented arty ads for Visa or travel,  but man oh man what do I get – bloody skungy foot ads …warts, hard bits, odour, nail problems??? Who wants to read about that when you are being transported through your few rare spare minutes by the posts of ‘komtack’ ?  Now I see why I don’t have a million followers….it’s just so obvious!

I don’t want to read about a hairy foot in a brownish fluid placed annoyingly after each post or even in between the paragraphs.

Top bloggers ( what?) constantly advise  you should make an effort to present eye-catching work or you will feel bad about yourself when the world at large fails to see you as brilliant and refuses to clamor for your work. Well, the ad department (who I presume placed the foot ad) has blighted my chances of being  famous and has been no help improving the site and against all their advice attracting followers – that’s for sure and certain.

Why not place a pleasant colourful ad on a struggling blog site even if it’s not always of mainstream interest,  allowing timely perusal of said blog (i.e.)  ‘komtack’ – without creating an impulse to tap out due to a proliferation of yukky foot ads.  It’s a cruel world and I’m heading for deep depression !!

The Bolivia Bash

Bolivia November 1930 (2)

Been some changes since this advertisement from November 1930 shows.  Eighty nine years after it was written the little hamlet of Bolivia is still surviving , although considerably smaller than in 1930. Times were hard with the Depression going on in that year and in 2019 it’s the drought making things tough. We did have nine artists playing  at the inaugural’ Bolivia Bash’  though and roughly seventy people who managed get there before bush fires cut the highway. OK it was a smaller gig than in 1930, but as mentioned – so is the population.

We made a fist of it with good food, good friends and good conversation all backed by good music. Unfortunately evacuation orders on the Saturday night meant it was over too soon, but nobody argues with firies or police. Strong winds were directing bush fire toward us and I imagine if there was a greasy pig around he would have been a little concerned.

Life in the bush is rarely easy, but small happenings such as the ‘Bolivia Bash’ play a large part in keeping spirits up when the future looks bleak. It will no doubt be on again next year …

 

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Blowed if I know !

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There are some things that are beyond my understanding. Before I clarify this let me tell you I am a senior and …uh- oh there goes one of the two people who were going to read this blog. Anyway, here are a few of those things which puzzle me …..

People who are not grateful for the things they have and fail to consider those with less.

People in sales jobs with no product knowledge or social skills….or interest in customers.

People who buy two large dogs and live in a one room apartment….in a complex.

People who convince themselves they can pay off a credit card with another credit card.

People who invest all their savings in one scam…sorry scheme, and get on TV to say how they were ripped off  – just to warn other dumb people.

People who think their new interest is AMAZING and want to get you to get involved in it to reassure themselves they aren’t the only gullible person.

People who tell you they will be there when you want a hand, but never show up.

People who borrow things and lend them to others and can’t remember who it was they loaned them to and  then are surprised when it is pointed out that they may be a bit thoughtless…and oh yes….

People who borrow already borrowed things and fail to return them to the original borrower.

People who relate the same experience over and over every time you meet ….and wonder why you doze off when they are speaking.

People who take offense at being told their children are out of control after they have almost destroyed the place they are in…which is often full of adults trying to enjoy a meal or a coffee.

People who spend a fortune on plastic surgery after which they look shit and wonder why people don’t seem impressed with the new look.

People who do blogs and believe they will make a difference to anyone’s life in the long term…it may happen occasionally, but it’s a long shot.

People who don’t like music and have no sense of humour.

People who create new IT programs and tell me they are making things much easier for me …here’s the thing…they aren’t!

People who do ghastly things to normal people ( let’s call them bullies) and then say they didn’t and immediately blame their neighbour… this one is to do with power, insecurity  and greed …and can involve whole countries…but it’s very satisfying to see ordinary folks getting together to make a change.

Yep lots of things….and another is I’m told old  people who write blogs dishing out sage advice… but you do learn as you get older and  knowledge should be passed on they say.

Well….. I tried.

 

 

Faith

I was thinking about the meaning of life today , as you do , and after I read a bit on it by Mr Google I was soon out of my depth and thoroughly confused with the words of professors and philosophers on the subject , but I read enough to see faith is a large part of it all.  However I was seeking a simple answer without getting into big words and heavy religion. I went on with my day choosing to keep it on the back shelf and just see what came to me.

Not long after this I noticed I was down to one toilet roll and eventually headed off to the corner shop to remedy that situation. I asked  my friend the laconic storekeeper, if he had any good deals on toilet paper. He said as we walked toward it, he had twelve rolls for $8, but he added, pointing to a large bundle this is a sixteen roll deal for $7.50. I asked if he believed they  were good quality and  wouldn’t  scratch or tear ? He assured me they were three ply and would be Ok.  Consequently I opted for  the sixteen roll deal.

When I got home I thought to myself that was a good demonstration of faith . Firstly I had faith in my friend’s honesty , which gave me faith these rolls would suit my needs without  failure in quality and finally my own faith that at my age I would live long enough to use sixteen rolls of toilet paper !