Saturday, September 13, 2014

Wisdom of the Ages

"I too had woven a kind of basket of a delicate texture, but I had not made it worth any one's while to buy them. Yet not the less, in my case, did I think it worth my while to weave them, and instead of studying how to make it worth men's while to buy my baskets, I studied rather how to avoid the necessity of selling them."  Thoreau in Walden

Didn't need to take both roll pins off.
 Thoreau wrote those words around 1846 and when I first read them around 1986 I felt they were worth reflecting on...continuing Thoreau's research, maybe embracing the unpopular results. "Instead of studying how [to sell the baskets], I studied how to avoid the necessity of selling them."
This is a central conflict I've encountered in the following 30 years. The question is not how to fix the broken sewage drain pipe or the c4 transmission or paint the plaster wall or establish reliable 480v power in the middle of the Chihuahuan desert to periodically activate oil circulating, that is merely one question. A more fundamental question is how to avoid the necessity of these projects...but the process of answering that question is fraught with conflict. The treadmill of time will not pause while Oggy sorts out the factors involved in modern living. And because the grey beard will wither with the fall leaves and the ligaments dry in cracked harmony with the tendons, the answer can not come quickly enough. Thoreau was aware that he had asked questions which required more than one life to answer, so he wrote them down in the hopes others would pick up where he left off. And still time marches on. Current Events are the modern narcotic, the nihilistic comments are the new age version of town halls. The process of questioning is negated by the time spent answering.


This drive gear for a sears garage door opener is a good example. While the world waits for Oggy to sort all the complications out this door still needs to open. The gear was broken when someone used a crowbar to tear the door off and stripped the old order to access the garage that was empty, so they broke some beer bottles and proceeded to break into the house with same crowbar. Is the bigger issue the drive gear? Or something else? Or both? But the roll pins have to be hammered out and in. And the gear needs grease and reassembly. What does this all mean?

roll pin insertion
My present conclusion is that the necessity of selling baskets is a paradigm facade, a construct of a failing mythology...but an easy role to play so we wear the pathetic costumes and dance when the comic orchestra strings ring. The Holy Bible was written specifically for descendents of Egyptian slaves who followed Moses to freedom but it encourages industry like a Martha Stewart cookbook written for we can't deny the value of industry. Thoreau was industrious to a point. He determined that too much industry returned the slave not to Egypt but to the mock the legacy of Moses with a 74 hour week in the conduit trenches. We do this why? For a future that must be better than our present, which raises the question of how terrible the era of the New Testament must have been. Autistic html robots present gadgets for the consumption of gadget addicts. Industry must double to support the doubling of industry. The essential questions are processing speed...mechanical and electrical diagrams...vocabulary is usurped by economists. Humanity without philosophy is a McDonalds commercial.
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Man in the Van by Oggy Bleacher is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License.