Archive for December, 2010

Grudges Can Be Good

Posted in Psychology with tags , , , , , , , , , , on December 29, 2010 by Drogo

What is your definition of a grudge? Can a grudge be simply smart wariness of a lesson learned with some form of forgiveness, or does it always have to be petty or over-blown anger? To me a grudge can be justified in self-defense, and involves decisions that may or may not include some type of forgiveness yet draws lines of conduct.

The dictionary does say “Grudge = resentful unyielding grumbling malice”

Grudge gets murky in between:  judgements of lesson learned from ill will; and judgements learned but still harboring resentment against the ill will or harm. Yet we must not let go of such feelings in order to remember certain traumatic events to reinforce a decision to be safer, even if slightly paranoid or prejudice… say against someone that robbed you repeatedly. Of course Jesus preached about not holding grudges and giving to those that take from you, but im not convinced that holding a grudge is always wrong… semantic issues im sure…. because a grudge can be the only resolution for many bad relationships or situations, because it provides a determined conclusion to a problem. Granted, often our judgements can be wrong, or change, but ‘negativity’ is natural and often important part of our lives, even though we do not like to view it as negative. For example Yen /Yang are opposites, Darkness is the opposite of Light, however Darkness is not always negative, and sometimes Light can be negative… each relative to the subjects, situations, and perspectives.

I do not consider all grudges to be bad or cancerous, I think that people may deny they feel deep-rooted resentment about issues in order to get on with life, but i feel that small or large grudges may be totally righteous, just as stubborn pride can be. Now whether it becomes cancerous or you allow it to eat you from within to no end is another issue, because certain amounts of anxiety, hate, anger, are natural and they come and go during periods, even during the length of a grudge. The point of feeling anger and hate or malice can be for a very good reason, and can be the factor that teaches a lesson that then becomes less harmful to ourselves.

In other words, i think that letting go of a “grudge” can be less important than learning why we might chose to have one in the first place. To me letting go of a grudge is foolish if abuse patterns are allowed to continue. So the abuse of a grudge can be less than abuse brought on by the reason to have one, and to have no grudge can result in no judgements against anything, which sounds great but is terrible for self-defense. Callous self-talk and stubborn pride can cause someone to say they do not hold grudges, just as easy as someone who admits to having a grudge.

Batman having a grudge or prejudice against violent criminals like the one that killed his parents is a good thing overall, despite the fact that it may cause him some harm, he is able to manage it and direct his anger with overall good results. While it may be harder to manage anger in reality, the fictional story does provide an extreme example of having a good grudge.

Yes we were all taught that having grudges is bad, and we have to let them all go if we get them; but i think it is an unnatural New Testament and Buddhist black or white way of thinking, and not true to the Pagan grey reality of human nature and nature in general. So the problem seems to be in the semantic definition of ‘grudge’; is a grudgelet better than a large grudge, not always since a mass murderer deserves a large grudge.

So even in cases where people say grudges are bad, it seems they can serve a good function, just as negative emotions can. Grudge certainly has a negative connotation in society, i just think there needs to be a word for a healthy grudge well managed, and well used not always dwelled upon to the point of self-destruction but rather self-preservation. Im saying we have no word for the ‘good or useful grudge’; but since it clearly exists as a ‘lesson learned’ ‘behavior changed’ ‘condition of reconciliation’ or what ever; i guess i have to make one up: Mudge. i dont know.

To me a grudge can deal with a problem issue, as a judgement held against someone for negative reasons; because the reasons are really positive for the holder as self-defense. What is negative for the holder of the grudge can be negative for the recipient and vice versa… or for both of course; or neither. i understand that the most common definition is all negative; just seems we have few words to deal with the importance of holding some grudges or prejudices, and what the differences are. I hold a grudge against something that hurts me, and i may forgive them but not forget because i do not allow certain things to repeat which may hurt them somehow… yeah it can get complicated is what im saying… yeah i got some serious grudges, and they do well to help keep me on the path of peace actually. There is simply no better word for a prejudice of wariness against those that i can be hurt by, intentionally or unintentionally. No offense, but i honestly think people do not fully understand the logical purpose of having a grudge, we are taught they are all bad, and they simply are not.

Beowulf has a grudge against the monster for killing his kin and trying to kill him, and that is good for Beowulf and bad for the monster Grendel.

I think most people hold grudges, but few admit to them.

True, grudges are not good for anyone; and also not always true. Fear and hate are our enemies, However there are many things in life that are not good for anyone, but are desired or even necessary evils. Many foods and medicines are toxic to some degree, and yet often we choose to take and ingest them. Some drugs or medicines are so strong, that they hurt us more than help us sometimes, like tobacco. Yet there are functional and psychological reasons that we do and take things that are ‘not good for us’, as catalysts for change, or to help another part of ourselves, aspects of our lives that are not always certain. Fear can stop us from burning our hands, just as a good grudge can keep us from making the same stupid mistakes in relationships.

What im saying is that it is a semantics issue, since ‘parting ways’ can be interpreted as holding a grudge since it is holding a judgement against someone, so what im saying is these decisions we make do not always destroy us from within, but sometimes make us what we are. I am saying im not going to just define grudge as petty prejudice, but it can be intentional decision making for quality of life that does not have to be what most people think it is, because it honestly is part of a life process of determining what we want, whether you want to call it a grudge or not. It is what it is.

Basically petty grudges are petty, and big grudges are bad when unmanaged and unbalanced with good will and kindness; but a good grudge can keep us from being harmed, and we do not have to worry about the grudge all the time, so they do not poison us any more than drinking a bit of alcohol or smoking herb does. Again, most people will not use this definition, im just pointing out what is obvious to me.

Peace. Try not to hold grudges that do not do you any good, but by all means keep the ones that keep you safe.

 

 

Oh, baby, now you’re such a drag.

Posted in Cooperatives / Communities / Networks / Travels, Sustainability on December 21, 2010 by eposognatus

The aisles of Target and their ilk, replete with inexpensive imported tripe, purchased predominately by svelte young women in yoga pants, all quite fine to behold, but leaving one feeling that too much plastic purchased portends a plastic soul.

Not so many miles away, in a small-town grocery, the aisles perhaps not so laden with “gourmet” or “premium” goods, but stacked with much more from not nearly so far away. The customers offer a rare and fascinating cross-section of a diverse people. A young man with gauged-out ears can be seen at the deli counter besides old women, who banter with the butcher just as does the hunter in his camo or the farmer in from his field, wearing wet and worn overalls and stinking of manure. Friends and neighbors meet here, and talk of life and love and dreams. Last night’s episode of that hit TV show… not so much.

It is for many in this country becoming an uncommon or even unknown scene, such that we think of it as some nostalgic view of the past, or representative of some quaint backwater. The rapidity of this change is staggering: “In Iowa the number of grocery stores with employees dropped by almost half from 1995 to 2005, from about 1,400 stores in 1995 to slightly over 700 just 10 years later. Meanwhile, “supercenter” grocery stores (Wal-Mart and Target, for example) increased by 175 percent in the 10-year period.“

Quaint backwaters do still exist, and ironically, may be more progressive than those enviro-conscious consumers at Target. They are closer in their habits and purchases to their fore-bearers, and though they may much more readily accept food presented in a can or box or plastic than their grandparents, they still tend to eat seasonally, buy locally, and recycle both materials and their money back to the community.

This isn’t strictly out of a sense of altruism, but more out of practicality. You can still (sometimes) find milk here in glass bottles not because the customer’s conscious shies away from plastic packaging, but because the dairyman can wash and re-use them. Products purchased directly from local farmers are less expensive and better tasting, if not always available. But to get one’s corn from the roadside farmstand, honey from a small home-based business, or anything not containing high-fructose corn-syrup is an arrangement often arrived at not by design, but through neglect. These places have been passed over by big box stores and national chain supermarkets as having insufficient economic density.

Many of us cannot imagine that any exit we take off the Interstate should not yield precisely the same array of stores as the last and the next. It is predictable, and that predictability is reassuring, in that we know what we’re getting (even if it isn’t particularly good for us). This isn’t a new phenomenon, as evidenced by a bit of dialogue from an episode of M*A*S*H (Out of Gas, 1972), in which Hawkeye Pierce checks in on a patient:

Hawkeye: Where are you from?
Patient: Idaville, Indiana. 
H: No kidding? Idaville?
P: Yeah. 
H: Ever go to the dances at the American Legion Hall there? 
P: Yeah, sure.
H: And, um… on the edge of town, there’s this little place… where you can get the world’s greasiest french fries. 
P: Right, Mona’s. – Yeah, yeah. 
H: And, uh, uh, what else? The Studebaker dealership, always has those search lights when they bring in new models. 
P: Hey, when were you in Idaville? 
H: Never. I grew up in the same small town in Maine. 

Rather than the predictable few, here the greasy spoon at the edge of town goes by many names, lending familiarity but not necessarily sameness. The menu is more or less the same, but each establishment is more reflective of its owners, clientele, and community. National chains deliberately look to avoid this, and, mistaking sameness for familiarity, plasticize the experience.

Maybe we’ve reached a point where we can only think of anything but what we know as that which others do, but not ourselves. Our nation is so hypocritically proud of its ethnic diversity yet always striving for utter culturally homogeneity. Perhaps it is unfashionable to think of more intimate and comfortable relations with our food suppliers, or it is has become so distant from our experience as to be unfathomable. Jane Jacobs, in The Death and Life of Great American Cities describes interactions that today seem somehow improbable, even fictional, as if the idealized world Norman Rockwell illustrated for us was founded on fantasy:

“The trust of a city street is formed over time from many, many little public sidewalk contacts. It grows out of people stopping by at the bar for a beer, getting advice from the grocer and giving advice to the newsstand man, comparing opinions with other customers at the bakery and nodding hello to the two boys drinking pop on the stoop, hearing about a job from the hardware man and borrowing a dollar from the druggist…”

What she was telling us back in 1961 wasn’t strictly about the city, it was about the people in it and the communities they form. A city just happens to be a large community, but we don’t think of them that way because people in them rarely behave as one. Jacobs rightly spoke to this as founded in trust, and that all of the seemingly trivial interactions we have with one another build that trust. Without interaction, or interaction conducted solely in the name of “customer service,” we all keep our guard up even if behind a facade of friendliness.

So you can put a grocery in a small town, but you can’t necessarily put the small-town in the grocery.

Nightmare On Elm Street Film List

Posted in Film Reviews with tags , , , , , , , , on December 19, 2010 by Drogo

List of Nightmare On Elm Street Movies

Elm Street Murders

Freddy Krueger

1.  A Nightmare On Elm Street  1984

2. Part 2:  Freddy’s Revenge

3.  Part 3:  Dream Warriors

4.  Part 4:  Dream Master

5.  Part 5:  Dream Child

6.  Part 6:  Freddy’s Dead

7.  Part 7: A New Nightmare

8.  Freddy Vs. Jason  2003

9.  Remake of original  2010

10:  ?

Friday the 13th List of Films

Posted in Film Reviews with tags , , , , , , , , on December 19, 2010 by Drogo

List of Friday the 13th Films

Camp Crystal Lake Murders

Jason Voorhees

1. Friday The 13th  (Jason’s Mother)  1980

2. Part 2          1981

3. Part III        1982-83

4.  Part IV:  Final Chapter  1984

5.  Part V:  New Beginning  1985

6.  Part VI:  Jason Lives  1986

7.  Part VII:  New Blood  1988

8.  Part VIII:  Jason Takes Manhattan  1989

9.  Part IX:  Jason Goes to Hell, Final Friday  1993

10.  Part X:  Jason X          2002

11.  Freddy Vs. Jason     2003

12.   Remake  2010

13.  ?

And a hundred years ago we didn’t even need electricity.

Posted in Environmentalism, Sustainability on December 16, 2010 by eposognatus

A recent headline from The Guardian entitled “Fox News chief enforced climate change scepticism” reveals a leaked email demonstrating an official policy of denial disguised as even-handed newscasting. Aside from this mandated skepticism, you may have noted many others in your daily life (or are one yourself) who debate the reality of “climate change.” Such articles invariably produce a slew of comments for and against, with few in-between, each side thinking the other absolutely mad, in much the same manner that only topics of religion seem to inflame. And really, we can treat both subjects similarly, in that the answer itself really doesn’t matter.

Yes, truly, for whether climate change is occurring, or if God exists or does not, does not matter. What matters is the question, and how we choose to approach it. I believe that religion or faith are not required for one to act in a moral manner, and neither should belief in climate change be required to behave responsibly. Nearly everyone agrees that we should have clean air, pure water, and fertile soil, but few are those who act to maintain such. Sadly, far too few. Nearly all of us – myself included – are part of the problem, and minimizing how big a problem we are should be our goal. A particular affliction of my countrymen is an overwhelming lassitude to take any action which infringes upon perceived comfort, though this nearly always means a change from the status quo rather than any real inconvenience. And, as Doctor Horrible so eloquently stated, the status is not… quo.

What is most confounding are those who simply regard environmentalism in general and climate change in particular as some sort of liberal scam, invariably having the objective of taking one’s money and forcing us to drive smaller cars. We may debate the means by which we get there, but how is it even sane to think of cleaning up our air, earth, and water as a “scam?” There are those who point to wind and solar and say “well, they can never meet all our energy needs” which by their reasoning makes them useless. So, rather than do something – anything – we should do nothing? I might liken this to a life-threatening illness which one treatment may not cure, but against which several in combination may work, or at least have a chance. Do you take the chance to live, whatever the cost? Or do you allow the affliction to consume your body until you suffer a horrifically miserable death?

“Their” answer, by the way, is almost always nuclear or “clean coal,” which are a physical and metaphorical cancer themselves.

The saying is an old one, but we all share the air we breathe. This is true, and so we logically have made certain we have the capacity to pollute it all equally well. While there are some 800 million operational automobiles worldwide, this does not even begin to account for the emissions of aircraft, industry, and energy production. In fact, nearly all figures on annual global emissions neatly avoid those produced by military operations, which can be staggering. Officially, the US Military consumes 340,000 barrels of oil per day. That’s 14,280,000 gallons. Every day. Each soldier is responsible for about 16 gallons each day. This works out to around 1.4 million tons of CO2 – or the annual emissions about 194,000 Toyota Camrys. Every day. This doesn’t include emissions from non-petroleum sources such as rocket propellant or explosives nor does it hint at chemical and radiological contamination from weapons systems and nuclear propulsion.

For most, these figures are meaningless. The only thing that matters is that when they get to the pump, they can fill up their tank and keep driving, keep consuming, keep polluting, and keep complaining to their co-workers about their “over-priced” fuel. Honestly, there is no price too high. Gasoline is one of the cheapest liquids you can buy. Never considered this? Take a look at your grocery bill next time you go shopping and see that milk, sports drinks, olive oil, laundry detergent… even water are all more expensive, and some many times over.

These numbers may also not impress you because you believe that humans are not causing climate change (or that it’s not occurring to begin with). So let us assume for a moment that the generally held view of the scientific community – that CO2 is a major agent in climate change – is false, or that it’s not taking place at all… CO2 emissions have no effect on the climate, and humans are not affecting the atmosphere through its production. Well, CO2 is merely one product of combustion, and the others aren’t all that particularly nice to inhale. If you disagree with this then you are welcome to go sleep in your garage tonight with your precious car running.

It is quite clear to me that the only effective means by which to drive the American consumer is through their wallet. While the Government tends to agree with this thinking it prefers to rely on rebates and incentives, tax breaks or refunds. Not good enough – these usually require paperwork and take time and few are responsible enough or can read well enough to take advantage of them. They would simply prefer to purchase the cheapest crap available to them. Corporations resist government limitations or standards, and individuals decry such actions as moving against their freedoms. Freedom to recklessly consume and endanger not only themselves but billions of others, and that is where we come to issue. Presently, I pay a premium on my electric bill to ensure that I am purchasing and supporting energy from renewable sources through the Second Nature program. This is backwards. Conventional energy production should cost a premium, and the balance used to subsidize startup and operational costs for new renewable sources. Still, we must start somewhere, and I’m voting with my wallet.

For an example of how un-quo the status is, take a look at this clip from The Age of Stupid. In it, wind-farm developer Piers Guy has his proposed fifteen-turbine project rejected by local opposition group CLOWD. It sounds like a bad Saturday-morning cartoon organization of villains, and they certainly act the part.

Harpers Ferry Literature

Posted in Cooperatives / Communities / Networks / Travels, Individuals / Members / Monsters / Creative Writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 11, 2010 by Drogo

Harpers Ferry Literature is dedicated to publishing those that want their work published without the hassle of paying agents and submitting endless sacrifices to big publishing companies. The time has come that us little people can have our work published, without big bucks. Based in the spirit of sharing with neighbors that we have in Harpers Ferry, WV; this concept of publishing is open to all applicants around the world.

NOW ACCEPTING ENTRIES

Must be your own work, or the work of someone that wants you to publish it for them.

Must give full application information requested.

Yes it can be writing from any year, any style, any genre, and any reading level from anywhere in the World.

Yes you retain copyright as the noted author of your piece, allowing for unlimited printing of our book, but contributing authors do not receive any royalties.

Yes you and others will be able to order copies directly from Amazon.com and Createspace.com.

 

APPLY BY WRITING TO stowellgalleries@gmail.com

PLEASE PROVIDE THE FOLLOWING INITIAL INFORMATION:

1. Full Name (for publishing credits)

2. Contact information

3. “I permit my work (as submitted to you) to be published by ‘HF Literature’, for unlimited printing.”

4. Optional personal or work info (Biographical blurbs)

5. Attach or paste the work you want published.

Note: Once your work is published, it will not be unpublished because of individuals that change their minds. Like a tattoo, consider the work permanent once it is published. Also like a tattoo, you as the author can always make more in other locations, even copies of the same one. If there is a chance you will regret it, simply do not publish.

Cost of Publishing: Currently there is no cost to the authors for publishing in this book. However if you would like to send a donation to ensure your work is published, simply make this known in your application, and we will work out the details.

AUTHORS AND ILLUSTRATORS UNLIMITED.

Thank you for your interest!

Publisher: Walton Stowell II

Sponsored by SCOD.

Colbert Roasts Bush

Posted in Critical Commentary of Civilization with tags , , , , , , , on December 3, 2010 by Drogo

“Rearranging Deck Chairs on the Hindenberg”

White House Press Corps Dinner

Steven Colbert’s Roast of President Bush

(Still one of the best roasts in history.)