Archive for the Society Clubs or Social Groups Category

Trumpian Economic Report 2020

Posted in Book Reports, Cartoon Comics, Commercial Corporations, Cooperative collaboration, Crafts, Critical Commentary of Civilization, jobs, Legal / Laws, Multimedia Communication, news, Organic Development, portraits, relationships, Services, Sales or Trade, Society Clubs or Social Groups, Sustainability, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on December 31, 2019 by Drogo

Artisan Vs. Commercial Market Selling

By Drogo Empedocles – January 2020

In a Trumpian economy most of us are forced to be beggars even when we offer work in return for money, due to an excess of labor not needed or desired by the rich. Trickle-down Reaganomics has failed us, and is still being pushed on us by Trump and all corporate politicians who sold out. We must resist falling to the attacks causing the destruction of our lives and plan to not just survive but rebuild a better world for our children.

Trump’s tax plan benefits the rich, and diminishes the middle class. The estate tax is gone now so that rich children can inherit all their parent’s wealth freely without earning it, while poor children suffer without deserving it. Personal exemptions have been removed. You can still itemize donations, but the standard deduction bar was raised with an overall .5% tax rate reduction. Those basic changes might negligibly benefit lower incomes, but average to upper middle class households are losing thousands on whole due to other changes in the tax plan.

I lost some financial support despite my working through the holidays on several projects. I won’t be able to do as much free or low-budget work with others, until i can secure more income to cover my own expenses at least. my income is only $700 a year recently, so i feel like i get by with quite a little actually. I only currently use one sound program most weeks, and focus on word (writing) programs, which have glitches between formats, but i am able to publish that way. So for over a year i have only been using two editing programs.

Most people should know that any work has a price; and so my work is for sale, as with any artist; we need means to live so we try to sell prints and originals if we can. If people do not know how to want to share money with others, i am not sure how i can help them except to remind them by bringing it up sometimes. I focus on my work more than sales, because i do it for the work not the sales. If i am asked to be more of a sales person i would not do it. i dont know if stating that i will keep doing my own work the way i want no matter what will reduce interest in investing in me or increase it long term; but i really do not see many options to sustain my career legacy. I may get some temporary side jobs like working for Census, but even if i got a huge increase in income what matters to me is what is created with what i have ultimately.

SCOD social capital has increased overall i believe, which is hard to define since it is not income based. I am close to founding a tristate network for hosting art, music, and writing events; but the design is mostly socially dependent, using properties in WV, MD, and VA. The financial components like ticket sales and payments are totally based on how many people i can get to coordinate together. we currently have several proposals still being formed, for multimedia broadcasting and sharing local events, i can pursue these negotiations without financial losses. ive felt on the verge of something big over the years, but i never know when the tipping point will come because … and this is the hard part to talk about, the complex dynamics of partnerships.

I am proud to ‘beg’ with something of quality to offer in return. When you buy my work, you support many other people; because I collaborate with and buy from other artists and friends. To anyone that thinks I am begging by being honest that I do not earn much, I argue that bragging about how good your work is and saying you have been ‘financially successful’ by taking more than you need is worse than begging because to me that could be considered just as unworthy of support. Getting money from other people is not proof of deserving money, it is simply how people pay their bills. Also I am not just begging because I offer plenty of services and products in various fields. I am simply saying why I could use more income, as opposed to those who do not need more for basic living. I have many jobs, and i do them. I tend to give things away for free and make reasonable deals to work with lower income people.  I apply to better paying jobs, but I do not get them, and when i have had them before i cannot keep them for psychological reasons, one being i cannot stand authoritarian control because i desire to fight back against bosses the same as I would with any willful cruel or ignorant jackass; but when we trade self-respect for money we suppress our resentment which can fester and build to a break-down or illness.

I will not spend time defending myself by arguing against assholes, they are not worth my time. I am too expensive for them because they cannot pay me enough to work for them, and it is easy enough to block them and delete their petty comments. Their attempts to troll me are pathetic when i can shut them down easily. It is amazing that people will ‘friend’ me only to wait for chances to attack, without ever once being kind.  These are the type of people that would tell homeless street musicians to “get a job” too.

If fees are low enough with time i can advertise more without major losses on more websites; in hopes to get at least a few sales. Social reception is usually less than enthusiastic on a whole from audiences on platforms. Amazon is the best example ive had because ive been using it for years, i struggle to get a few sales a year even when i post the links and talk about them etc. I know it is not because my books are not as good as ‘Diary of a Whimpy Kid’ or ‘Captain Underpants’ which are best sellers, it has to do with commercial control of the market at the high levels. I mean sure we could argue whose art or story sucks more, but with enough exposure anti-authoritarian subversive books like ours do well with children and ne’er-do-wellz, which are a large portion of the population.

Ironically most of the people who buy my books are part of the vanishing middle class; not the lowest or the highest earning. There are more lower middle class people so they do buy more books, compared to the few upper middle class people who are interested in my books. I have had people with large incomes talk with me for hours, and i gave them books and they still did not buy any, so spending money has more to do with personalities than wealth; which is why those with less wealth will spend more if they have an income, which creates financial flow and opportunities in an economy.

All of these opinions of observations are reasons why many of us are not satisfied with status-quo commercial politics. We want more leaders like Bernie Sanders and progressives on the right or left who can be held to account by their voters who are also the majority of their campaign financing. We cannot afford allowing corporate sell-outsto further rig our own economy, environment, and country against us.

[ see also Lucas Chancel, World Inequality Lab ]

 

Pipe-Dream Pub Prophesy & Proposal 1997

Posted in Adaptive Reuse, Futurist, Pub Library, Roleplaying / Reenacting, SCOD Status Update Reports, Society Clubs or Social Groups, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 25, 2019 by Drogo

The Future of the Middle Ages

 

Written in 1997 by Drogo to Pipe-Dream Pub fellowship (edited and digitized in 2019)

 

Why West Virginia?

 

The rugged, rocky, rolly hills and blue ridge mountains with verdant valleys are a backdrop for snow, rivers, rain, fog, and dusty heat. Cold snowy winters and hot sweaty summers combine with landscape that has the same climate (more or less) as England. Farmland and coal mines; sturdy, beautiful, and backwards in beautiful country ways: a perfect medieval setting for a dwarven tavern.

 

Why Harpers Ferry?

 

While maintaining a hardy mountaineer heart, the spirit of Harpers Ferry has guarded and sustained freedom despite its quaint, hobbiton, touristy appearance. Historic Harpers Ferry has been defined by influential travelers, and thrived in their wake. The guests and visitors act in spiritual freedom immortally, like a chronic hysteresis. As Shirley Dougherty puts it, “History always repeats itself in Harpers Ferry.” Native American sacred land where the Potomac and Shenandoah shed tears of love that ran together between the mountains and formed the rivers. Peter Stevens 1730, Robert Harper 1750, surveyed by George Washington 1797 and Thomas Jefferson for the Federal Armory 1830, John Brown’s Raid to free the slaves 1859, President Clinton and Gore Earth Day 1998 (?) and many other important figures and events are part of our legacy. 

 

Prophecy Proposal 1.  We Try Living Together

 

Trial By Sword and Stone

It is summer 2001 and I have graduated from SCAD (Savannah College of Art & Design). In past summers I worked for my Father and HABS (the Historic American Building Survey) as an architectural draftsman, but this summer I have joined the National Guard, and applied to the NPS (National Park Service) Design Center in Harpers Ferry. Three of my history and design friends have taken advantage of the lucrative job market in the DC area, and are currently renting from my parents for metropolitan commuting. The four of us are in a partnership written by round-table contract, and use the school-house in back for a studio office. We also host Gallery exhibits and shows downstairs with antiques, and sometimes entertain B&B guests. There is a substantial flow of money as we prosper.

 

Prophecy Proposal 2.  We Decide on the Pub Site Land Location

 

Trial By Earth 

A link is established in 2002 between 4 other partners, making 7 of us in the Pub Fellowship. We prepare for the Pub by sharing expenses and seeking land. Eventually we find the best site and purchase the property. Acquisition of ideal, strategic site land that is agreeable to everyone may prove to be the most difficult task of all. The amount of variables involved may seem overwhelming.

 

Prophecy Proposal 3.  Investors, Funding, and Financing

 

The Round Table Trial

It is now July 7th, 2003 and the four of us already in town, meet with our newest 3 members at Jefferson’s Rock. Perched upon the Rock of Ages we announce our time is nigh, calling out their arrival into the valley. The rush of the rivers generates a roaring cacophony that titillates our napes as we raise our heads high to the mountains, and declare our individual rights and strengths. Our proclamations echo through the gap, and fly down-stream towards the Capitol of our Nation; flooding the ears of the mundanes. We shout in unison “One for all, and all for one!!! Tally-ho to the Pipe-dream Pub! Hurrah!! Hooray!!! Vivate!!! Liberty!!!” With 7 investors we now can get enough loans and grants and easements. 

 

Prophecy Proposal 4.  Swear Allegiance Fidelity

 

The Trial of Camelot

Discussions and blueprints of the Pub follow after savings are spent in addition to other sources of funding for Pub property and materials. We archive written insurances and oaths of fidelity to the financial, material, and spiritual fellowship. The Sacred Seven can never fall so long as is planned for, with good will and reason. No one will unite if there be an unproven doubt in their mind or gut. We are philosopher kings united by the power of moral reason. None shall be untested, and with good fortune, none unspoken. And with all said, none unbroken. If a break arises it shall no doubt crack with at least one, but before a downfall the crack shall be filled by the spirit of the remaining 6. Even if 4 of the 7 fall, 3 is quite a magic number (in and of itself), and cannot be denied despite trials, though it be less than 4. If nightmares dare to cross o’er the river Styx into this world to turn 5 away from 2, the 2 will prove stronger (though they be fewer), because of the intimate nature of our number. But if the reality remains a dream of one, or the 7 be undone, to the deep dark abyss with this paper and the Pipe-dream shared by none. Each of our dreams must be thus defined and communicated through speech, writing, sounds, drawings, models, and bodily gestures as completely as possible, in order to compare how our individual desires for the collective dream correspond.

 

Prophecy Proposal 5.  Building Construction, Operation, and Sustaining Success

 

The Quest for the Holy Grail

Construction or restoration of the Tavern will ensue. The vision of Camelot will for the first time, be in sight. The combined knowledge of the Pub Fellowship of philosophers will prove a multifaceted tool of inexhaustible energy. As philosophical knights of the round table, we will support each-other as bees in a hive; our Queen is Wisdom (Sophia). Buzzing with ideas, skills, and events our vision will take shape, as hunters acquire resources and exchange places with guards to defend, direct, and build. The material cards we have saved in our hands, will emerge for this ultimate power play. There is such a joyful vitality of powerful energy to the Pub collective, that none spare time to doubt if the dream was worth it. We dance to our own rhythms while we work, so that even the most mundane tasks feel successful. We follow the verdant path of the Goddess in our productive frolicking and fiddling. Indulging in a labor of mind and body, we manifest an artistic functioning time machine, or vehicle for atmospheric revival and mental transportation. The Pub work is life affirming.

 

Maps are drawn and schedules made. The property of the Pub is large enough for a Tavern or Inn (a few acres). The Pub site is nestled away in woods, yet strategically accessible near a major interstate intersection within the DC metro area. There is ample parking up front. A long driveway wraps around back to stables of a half-timber two-story structure. There is a blacksmith’s shop and grounds for birds, cats, dogs, and horses. The main door is hard wood with heavy elaborate iron hinges, and a strong knocker handle ring. The door opens onto the ground level (first floor) bar and hearth of the Pub. All of the doors can be barred from the inside, chain-locked, pad-locked, and key-locked. By day the interior is lit by diamond pane windows, and later by a grand fireplace, candles, and chandeliers at night. Primarily a wood paneled hall with swords, shields, and various artifacts and mathoms displayed on walls and relic racks. The bar is adjacent to the fireplace, with a stair leading up between them. Bathrooms are behind the stairs, with a gallery hall for internet connection. Six tables crowd the room and pipe smoke hangs about. A fiddler rests on a stool in the corner, bar-wench Debbie serves ale, and Brynna (celtic female lark) sings before the fire. All forms of alcohol and herb are sold here, without the stress of an elite menu. If any food is sold, it consists of simple soups, breads, and common organic vegetables. The atmosphere is alluring to farmers, hunters, truckers, and bikers; but also to role-players, SCA, history buffs, reenactors, and even your average curious tourist or excited vacationer escaping from the rat-race.

 

Using the same chimney as the main hall, is the Library for quiet drinking, meditating, and studying. Upstairs is where the owners or bar-keeper lives; private bed-rooms, a study, and guest rooms. The blacksmith lives underground and guards the wine cellar, with dogs. The basement cellar links directly to the stable, bar, and oubliettes. The west wing of the Inn will have a dining hall and more guest rooms, and the east wing will have a kitchen and office. Blessed be, so mote it be.

  • END

[ AUDIO RECORDING of Drogo reading his original letter ]

Talk It Out: Conversation As Art

Posted in Interviews, POB Audio, Psychology, Society Clubs or Social Groups, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on July 23, 2019 by Drogo

Join us as we search for meaningful conversation, that may or may not be pleasant or comfortable. Will we know what we are talking about the whole time? Find out! [SHOW LINK]

in a busy world of working for less and less pay, at jobs that would rather replace you than let you take time off, communication has largely been reduced to texting loved ones and ignoring customers who are forced to deal with machines. is there a natural need to have meaningful conversation, or should those of us who prefer to spend a certain amount of time talking all be therapists or long-distance sex workers??

use caution when listening – we are not trained conversational professionals. any opinions we have are to be considered hear-say or entertainment for legal purposes. We are also not paid to compete against commercial level production, so just sit back and relax, or move on to something else, because it is not worth getting upset about. i agree with experts on somethings about talking, but not everything they say is true for everyone, they give general guides for awareness. Speak the way that is best for you, and silence is ok too sometimes, when communication fails.

*

Conversation as Science – According to experts

Communication Construction and Deconstruction

Signs & Symbols, Language Families & Standard Rules

When we talk about language rule standards: grammar, spelling, syntax, punctuation, Dictionary definitions, Semiology (signs and symbols), and Semantics (semiotic meanings), etc. that could be a transition into word order and how we read the way we prefer to talk, leading into artistic self expression and times we want to mimic others, which leads into artistic styles and interpretation of communication, and self expression, specifically conversation as art.

*

Julien Treasure – HAIL: Honest, true; Authentic, real; Integrity, responsible; Love, wishing well.

Sugar or honey with honesty is nice. Don’t: gossip, judge, complain, blame, lie, exaggerate, or have flaws (unless joking or there are real problems).

 

Celeste Headlee – weather and health are not enough. How to talk and have meaningful conversation even with people we disagree with deeply.

  1. Focus on talk, until out of it, be present.
  2. Be open to learning, or at least respectful in responses.
  3. Open ended questions?
  4. Let most things go.
  5. It is ok to say you dont know everything.
  6. Some personalities like to have comparative sympathy, while others think it is too competitive to compare experience values. (i edited)
  7. Dont brag (too much) and Dont repeat (too much)
  8. Details dont (always) matter.
  9. Try to balance (if possible) time talking vs listening (for equality).
  10. Be brief, but interested. (people are busy, but sometimes want more time with someone that can help them, in a time of need)

 

Ted talks – General guide options, not true for all.

 

Brene’ Brown – power of vulnerability, empathy

 

Marc Pachter – interview as art, meaning in life. Energy is more important than intellect. Story worth sharing. Modesty wastes time, you have to think it is worth some value to tell your story. Competing for attention can lead to arguing, not discussing, unless it is fun for everyone. Wrestle for the key to unlock story.

 

Sherry Turkle – connected but alone? Conversation has depth (emotion, language, sound) of communication that no amount of texting connection can adapt to.

*

Communication Deconstruction

Signs & Symbols, Language Families & Standard Rules

When we talk about language rule standards: grammar, spelling, syntax, punctuation, Dictionary definitions, Semiology (signs and symbols), and Semantics (semiotic meanings), etc. this is the science of communication. The word order and how we ‘read the way we prefer to talk’, based on cultural factors are how we interpret what laws should be. 

From common slang greetings that are not properly correct, to a feeling of fake formal presentation vs real country folk authentic accents; opinions are relative. Rules give general guides, and rebels will break the rules their way.  But not everyone wants to conform to all the rules, in the liberal vs literalist dichotomy. Between mixed families and dialects there is language evolution. Artistic self expression, group styles, and regional markers are as valid as any rules.

There are times we want to mimic others, not to ‘make fun of’ to insult, but to match and sympathize with their way. Individual styles and interpretation of communication, are integral for conversation as art. Art can be harmonious, but also chaotic. I agree with experts on some talking points, to have common language ground, and reference points for discussion about what is important to talk about. It is nice to know how and why to be polite, but also be able to show honest emotions and desires. Speak the way that is best for you, and silence is ok too sometimes, when communication fails. Some people are mute and prefer silence, that is ok too.

 

This is the art of conversation.

We call to each other from afar,

Approaching we talk of weather and feather

And we come close to whisper in our ears

To say or not to say, or how shall we say it?

Is this the art of conversation?

 

*

Arts & Literature Seasonal Gathering

Posted in Education / Schools, Events / Celebrations, Individuals / Members / Monsters / Creative Writing, jobs, news, Services, Sales or Trade, Society Clubs or Social Groups, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 9, 2018 by Drogo

Day, Month, Year, Time – Arts & Literature Seasonal Gathering – You are invited to the Victorian Townhouse of the Honorable S.P. (near Market Street) __ Third Street, downtown Frederick, MD; to read anything of your choice for apx.10 minutes, and our informal group will discuss for about the same time as the reading. Tea will be served.

Democratic voting on name of group, which selections to read, whether to record, and date of next meeting.

[for actual current details contact SCOD members]

The Inklings

Posted in Fictional Stories, Memorials / Obituaries / Epitaphs, Society Clubs or Social Groups, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on October 5, 2018 by Drogo

The Inklings (1930-1949)

The Inklings were an informal literary discussion pub group, led by JRR Tolkien and CS Lewis and other friends associated with Oxford University in England. The Inklings valued fantasy narratives in fiction. Lewis loved listening to other authors who were reading, and he memorized their passages easily.

Lewis and Tolkien invited and met fellow writers to talk and listen at pubs. Regular Inkling meetings were on tuesday mornings at the ‘Eagle & Child’ (aka “Bird and Baby”). Meetings were also held in Lewis’s Magdalen rooms, thursday evenings with tea served.

The third main member of the Inklings was Oxford University Press editor Charles Williams. Other Inkling members included Lewis’s brother Warren Lewis, Victor “Hugo” Dyson, Adam Fox, Lord David Cecil, Neville Coghill, Owen Barfield, Robert “Humphrey” Havard, Gervase Mathew, and Commander Dundas-Grant. Associate Inklings that visited were Colin Hardie, Christopher Tolkien (JRR Tolkien’s son), Roger Green, Percy Bates, Ronald McCallum, Charles Wrenn, E.R. Eddison, Roy Campbell, and other friends of regular members. There were no officers, agendas, or minutes taken at meetings. Most of these did not write fiction, but were scholars of non-fiction.

The whimsical group name “Inklings” was borrowed from an Oxford under-graduate literary club circa 1930. Tolkien described his Inkling meetings as “a feast of reason and flow of soul”, which basically meant lively listening and responses. Lewis said “What I owe them all is incalculable.” And to emphasize their enjoyment, he asked, “Is any pleasure on earth as great as a circle of Christian friends by a good fire?” Lewis said that friends made a difference in his life.