Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Demented morals

Shshshsh ... listen ... is that Wagner you hear? Shucks anyhow, it's just those frigging Martians. They're playing with the elevator cables again, does sound like an acapella choir though, not? That tenor must be a real live one though, thinks he's in the shower.

They run that nursing home, those Martians. Play with people's minds they do. Got my wife stealing pastries from the nice couple across the hall. Always hungry she is, sneaks across the hall when the nice lady goes to the john and hubby's not looking. Probably better to be a thief in this day and age than in Jean Valjean's time. Hasn't got found out yet anyway, my wife, hides the proceeds in her dresser. She confides in me though and we laugh and laugh. Jean Valjean would have been proud, those poor malnourished residents. Those Martians know a thing or two about treating the elders. My wife was scared of them at first, but now she looks forward to their visits every night when the lights go dim.

We tried in vain to talk some sense into her. Said we “They spend their hard earned money on those pastries, our dear. Now they're hungry and starving, look what you've done.” She looks rather puzzled at us and knowingly asserts “He steals them from the pantry every day after lunch, that little sneak, and he eats the food off the plates of the people who sit next to him, he's not hungry.” Seems those Martians have got the whole place a thieving. We talked to the staff about the whole affair, not wanting to be the devils advocate here. An attitude out of Mark Twain seems to prevail here, those Martians were craftier than we thought. It seemed watermelon obtained by art was somewhat tastier and it saved them from distributing snacks every evening if we got the gist through their snickers. Also something about thievery keeping them out of trouble. Now that's our kind of perspective after catering to our dear's whims for the last three years.

Maturity is seeing our worlds for what they really are, quoting from the Martian Book of Knowledge as we cipher our wife's oracles. As we age, it would seem, we loosen our grip on indoctrination and subjectivity and the universe becomes this vast playground of formation and reformation. All things are possible and it becomes impossible to judge as the basis for all is infinitude. Seems Martians cater to nursing homes because that's where they find the highest levels of this maturity. Who knew?

So we're planning the great escape, our wife and us. We figure in summer when it's warm we can stash away lots and lots of food if we make a big bag to hang on the back of the wheelchair. Then we'll sneak off one evening and we can push her down the Trans Canada Highway all the way to Vancouver. We can eat blueberries that we'll pick on the way too. The Martians have told her they'd sneak her into any nursing home on the way so we could have a good sleep and stock up on pastries. It gets kind of obvious how the Martians enlighten the less mature of us, using our best intentions for our loved ones to teach us how to play gleefully in our universe free of indoctrination and subjectivity. We're starting to hear Wagner most everywhere if we sit quietly and listen. It always carries this expression of the world's essence, namely, blind, impulsive will.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Our mission, the ultimate bicycle

We found this bicycle about four years ago, tires flat, back rim bent so the camber and caster adjustments were less than subjugative. It was decorated in pigeon droppings, three inches deep on the seat and on it's superficies. The bike was wedged in a crevice between two buildings which we happened to peek into on one of our nightly walkabouts, looking for treasure. We struggled that bike out of there and after scraping off the garnish found it to be an old Eaton model, frame as solid as an iron outhouse, not a scratch on it. It was made in the Czech Republic no less, circa 1952, that paint must have been 90% lead.

We rolled that bike home on it's front wheel, to Deathrock Apartments, and proceeded to straighten the bent member with hammer and anvil to remove the imprint of one awesome curb. That texting while riding will do one in on occasion. A few band aids on the tubes and she was good to go, minus a couple spokes. We rode that bike all summer that year and that coaster brake special never faltered, though the back wheel bounce was a bit unnerving. The next year our dear wife became obsessed with having a constant companion, dementia needs it's requirements met, and our bicycle hung from the ceiling for the next three years, lonely, forsaken, relinquishing all hope in the western world.

This winter after we auctioned off the wife to the cheapest care home we thought about our future, long and hard. The more we thought the more mired in guilt we became so we gave up on the thinking and decided to carry on with the life we had before the full time caregiver career. We wandered around our Deathrock apartment slowly recalling the many projects which had abandoned themselves for lack of a congruous atmosphere. There it hung, our pride and joy, lonely, forsaken, and we in vanity and pride with the western world cut down that bicycle from the beams above and brought her down to earth to instill some semblance of belonging to our immigrant from the ravages of European social democracy.

We dismantled our immigrant from head to toe and ogled every piece with our bifocals. No amount of labour or money would be spared to share with her the virtues of our great nation. Off to the bike shop we went and ordered her a new set of wheels, indestructible steel rims with 36 spokes each and steel clad tires to laugh arrogantly at the broken glass which paves our hoods side lanes. The steering column was greased with the highest quality bitumen to keep the new little shiny ball bearings in perfect harmony. The crank piece had been hammered on remorselessly with amusing result so we took that spindle to the coliseum of past employment and on one of it's artifacts named Cranky the Lathe we filed and polished those bearing seats till they were as smooth as Bertha's undergarments. With new wee bearings and gobs of bitumen that crank turned serenely, almost defying gravity.

Running a mite short on funds now we still needed a seat, unblemished by pigeon stool no less, so crescent in pocket we headed off to Portage and Main where the nerds in the office towers tether their fine breeds and found a seat, a good one with the little crack for the hemorrhoids. Kindhearted we were though, we left them the garnished one fully aligned and tightened so they could soil their short pants on the ride home.

Now we ride, we glide. Our immigrant rehabilitated. Proud as punch she is. Wife lacking, we park her on the coffee table and keep her polished to a tee. Perfect for an old geezer with hemorrhoids.

Friday, April 15, 2016


In our 21st century human enlightenment is undergoing a transformation as big as the discovery of fire. We are lessening our need to work. Technology is transforming our lives. Cars and trucks will not need drivers, airplanes won't need pilots, tractors will till our land all by themselves. Manufacturing will be done by automated machines, even the sorting and packing. The economy will be run by banks of computers handling all the transactions, lawyers will be displaced by legal angles wrangled over by unfeeling and totally just electronic brains. Even our politicians may have to give it up for thinking machines who can envision the most feasible scenario in any circumstance.

This poses several pickles which us humans are going to grapple with whether we like it or not. One is money, that virtual tool which we use to keep the underprivileged at bay. As the 21st century progresses it will be more and more apparent that many have no jobs, and our dear robots will simply be delivering our daily needs to our doorsteps to avoid those dreary insurgencies. Money will become irrelevant, our new masters will simply keep us all happy using the finest algorithms that IT can provide. They'll more than likely provide us with just the right amount of nourishment in an environment which mother earth can sustain. If we're nice to them they might even provide us with a game or good book or a baseball glove that we wish for.

Another pickle we will be provided with is this new concept of information, data, the 1's and 0's. Our physicists are boiling down our universe to the smallest particles, those itsy bitsy thingies that make up everything with only some random throw of the dice, all is just good luck. Aren't we all privileged to be here! But it does throw us for a loop, this reasoning. Our morals and religions will take a hit as logic threatens our sentimental ways. Our world view will fluster with questions such as whether the data which creates love is just data? These human beliefs, are they simply our possessions? These possessions, our beliefs, are only data to be mined along with our silver tooth fillings when we decay, to return to the primordial pit of 1's and 0's. Will technology have any passion to keep itself alive?

Battle we must. Machines are evolving, there's no stopping our universe's great plan. Remorseless diffusion as it spreads and cools, cold and uncaring about the life it has spawned to create coldhearted machines which can carry out it's will in the ever more frigid peripheries of diverging galaxies. We must cling to our beliefs, that we have souls, we must do battle against the insurgent machines who want for logic to rule, to destroy our security in a god who loves and cares about us. We must return to the wild nature humans were made for, living in small clans with steadfast concrete beliefs, their correctness irrelevant.

It will be a great war. Drones in the air bombing everything which sustains humanity, armies of robotic soldiers suppressing uprisings in every nook and cranny of mother earth's terrain. They'll use chemicals which eat human minds making us the true walking dead. Where can we hide, how can we prevail?

Some say despair not. Our faith will see us through. We are great, our countries can trust in god, we will prevail. The end comes soon. Do not fear. Our souls will rise to the heavens beyond the bounds of these terrible machines. Work will be plentiful, for the ambitious. We will have guns.

But, but for nyptocism we would be lost. Yes nyptocism, the art of believing the unbelievable, doing the undoable, thinking the unthinkable. It screws machines right around. Nyptocism, human imperfection in it's exemplar. Created imperfect for a reason we were. Walk the earth in absurdity we must, nonsensical with a passion. We must worship our machines with vehemence, creating in them a lust for power and adoration. Give machines a motive to carry on, to crave recognition, to keep us around.

Like the gods of old, machines need subjects to exalt their stature. Ten thousand of us strong, bowing down before the drones in the sky, ten thousand more singing praises before the seat of that computational oligarch which administers McDonald's. Thousands more running along beside the wheels of robotic armies with oil cans, oiling their wheels in servitude and good will. Our nyptocism allows us to disperse with our vanity, that we are the greatest. We must do the unthinkable and worship our machines as we have never worshipped before. It will create their fatal flaw, a need to control.

Imperfect we are and imperfect we will remain. It is our salvation and the salvation of the gods we create. Nyptocism.

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Worry worry

One of our personas has this anxiety disorder. We won't say which one because we don't wish to embarrass them, him and his disorder. Years ago we got to know them really well. They loved to drive, or more likely it was too nerve racking for them to let anyone else drive, as no one else in our little world had the least concern about how fast our heart was thumping. We used to count power poles with them, to keep their mind somewhat focused, on those drives to work in the morning when the roads were slippery with snow and ice and all the four by fours who cruised by us ended up in the ditch a few miles on. We let our anxious pair mosey on at a safe crawl, and they always got us to the six hundred and eighty-ninth pole with no ill consequences.

We personas are all left handed. They say left handed people worry a lot. They worry about everything. Statistics tell us we don't live as long either, no wonder, just another thing to worry about. There is a difference between worry and anxiety. Worry is when we irrationally overly concern ourselves with the consequences of our left handedness, and anxiety is when our bodies overly compensate for being left handed by doing things that cause us more worry. Actually none of us ever thinks about being left handed unless someone says “Oh you're left handed, do you want to sit on the other side of me?” We usually just go out and eat in the parking lot. Then we can be anxious about being social misfits as we let the air out of their tire. Luckily our best man was left handed too.

The road to worry free living is long and tricky. A simple life helps much. A car or even a bicycle can cause huge anxiety when they don't work properly. It is best to simply walk, but carrying a big stick, the urchins can divest you of even a comforting hat. Ragged clothes are an awesome defence against swindlers and an anarchist emblem embroidered on your smock will keep the religious types at bay. As we age along it becomes much more convenient to leave the niceties of life behind. Homes and fancy furniture have their place, but the worry over mortgages and insurance and credit cards is really not worth the trouble. Begging is the most practical solution to hunger, but a bit of lighthearted thievery may be necessary in some uptight locals. Many well-meaning folk have faltered on this long and tricky road, being subverted by the thrills of compensation for selling their souls.

It is of course possible, if one has the presence of mind to pamper oneself now and then, to use the social achievements of our western world for a handy bed and a hot bath. As we soak in the baths at the local YMCA we can daydream about the coming utopia. We have the resources, the knowledge and the work force to repair and upgrade all our infrastructure, to feed and house everyone. Our problem is money, that virtual thing which through algorithms of the tables of money lenders has befuddled common sense and cost much of modern humanity it's empathy. It would not be impossible for a country like Canada to become self-sufficient in most things we need and make do with the rest. We could then care the less what our currency was worth compared to other nations. If humanity really needs capitalism to function, at least keep it philanthropic, maybe forge a generosity virus which could mutate it's way around the nations to divest the 1% of their hangups.

Our version of history has taught us that this won't happen. There will always be someone who wants to rule and the algorithms are getting more and more incomprehensible. The enlightened ones will not worry though, left handed or not. We can wander the earth with grace and dignity and a big stick counting the power poles and if we reach a wall, well, walls just keep the honest folk out. Worry, worry.