Life isn’t stable. Stability is unnatural. The only stable society is the police state. You can have a free society or you can have a stable society. You can’t have both. Take your choice. As for me, I’ll choose a free, organic society over a rigid, artificial society any day.
I feel to that the gap between my new life in New York and the situation at home in Africa is stretching into a gulf, as Zimbabwe spirals downwards into a violent dictatorship. My head bulges with the effort to contain both worlds. When I am back in New York, Africa immediately seems fantastical – a wildly plumaged bird, as exotic as it is unlikely.Most of us struggle in life to maintain the illusion of control, but in Africa that illusion is almost impossible to maintain. I always have the sense there that there is no equilibrium, that everything perpetually teeters on the brink of some dramatic change, that society constantly stands poised for some spasm, some tsunami in which you can do nothing but hope to bob up to the surface and not be sucked out into a dark and hungry sea. The origin of my permanent sense of unease, my general foreboding, is probably the fact that I have lived through just such change, such a sudden and violent upending of value systems.In my part of Africa, death is never far away. With more Zimbabweans dying in their early thirties now, mortality has a seat at every table. The urgent, tugging winds themselves seem to whisper the message, memento mori, you too shall die. In Africa, you do not view death from the auditorium of life, as a spectator, but from the edge of the stage, waiting only for your cue. You feel perishable, temporary, transient. You feel mortal. Maybe that is why you seem to live more vividly in Africa. The drama of life there is amplified by its constant proximity to death. That’s what infuses it with tension. It is the essence of its tragedy too. People love harder there. Love is the way that life forgets that it is terminal. Love is life’s alibi in the face of death. For me, the illusion of control is much easier to maintain in England or America. In this temperate world, I feel more secure, as if change will only happen incrementally, in manageable, finely calibrated, bite-sized portions. There is a sense of continuity threaded through it all: the anchor of history, the tangible presence of antiquity, of buildings, of institutions. You live in the expectation of reaching old age.At least you used to.But on Tuesday, September 11, 2001, those two states of mind converge. Suddenly it feels like I am back in Africa, where things can be taken away from you at random, in a single violent stroke, as quick as the whip of a snake’s head. Where tumult is raised with an abruptness that is as breathtaking as the violence itself.
Death isn't empty like you say it is. Emptiness is life without freedom, Darrow. Emptiness is living chained by fear, fear of loss, of death. I say we break those chains. Break the chains of fear and you break the chains that bind us to the Golds, to the Society. Could you imagine it? Mars could be ours. It could belong to the colonists who slaved here, died here." Her face is easier to see as the night fades through the clear roof. It is alive, on fire. "If you led the others to freedom. The things you could do, Darrow. The things you could make happen." She pauses and I see her eyes are glistening. "It chills me. You have been given so, so much, but you set your sights so low.""You repeat the same damn points," I say bitterly. "You think a dream is worth dying for. I say it isn't. You say it's better to die on your feet. I say it's better to live on our knees.""You're not even listening!" she snaps. "We are machine men with machine minds, machine lives …" "And machine hearts?" I ask. "That's what I am?""Darrow …" "What do you live for?" I ask her suddenly. "Is it for me? Is it for family and love? Or is it just for some dream?""It's not just some dream, Darrow. I live for the dream that my children will be born free. That they will be what they like. That they will own the land their father gave them.""I live for you," I say sadly. She kisses my cheek. "Then you must live for more.
Knowledge isn't truth. It's just mindless agreement. You agree with me, I agree with someone else - we all have knowledge. We haven't come any closer to the truth. You can never understand anything by agreeing, by making definitions. Only by turning over the possibilities. That's called thinking. If I say "I know", I stop thinking. As long as I keep thinking, I come to understand. That way, I might approach some truth.
It's always something here - if there isn't a riot, then someone's usually trying to escape. The wasted effort helps me see the positives of imprisonment. Unlike those pulling their hair out in good society, here we don't have to feel ashamed of our day-to-day unhappiness. Here we have someone visible to blame - someone wearing shiny boots. That's why, on consideration, freedom leaves me cold. Because out there in the real world, freedom means you have to admit authorship, even when your story turns out to be a real stinker.
You have two choices in life when it comes to truthful observations by others that anger you: You can be ashamed and cover it up by letting your pride take you in the extreme opposite direction, in order to make the point that they are wrong. Or, you can break down the walls of pride by accepting vulnerability as a strength, not a weakness. As you walk through your vulnerability, you will meet humility on the way to courage. From here, courage allows us to let go of shame and rise higher into the person we are meant to be, not the person that needs to be right. This is the road to confidence and self worth.
Our destination isn't clear. All I know is that I want to get there together. The Unknown is scary. I'll always have some fear about what's going to happen next. The thing is, the unknown can also be exciting. Your life could change in an instant anytime. But sometimes, that change is the best thing that will ever happen to you. Maybe I dont' have to know what my fate is to know that everything will be okay. Maybe the not knowing is how we move forward. Wherever I'm headed, I know it's exactly where I'm supposed to be.
Running isn't a sport for pretty boys...It's about the sweat in your hair and the blisters on your feet. Its the frozen spit on your chin and the nausea in your gut. It's about throbbing calves and cramps at midnight that are strong enough to wake the dead. It's about getting out the door and running when the rest of the world is only dreaming about having the passion that you need to live each and every day with. It's about being on a lonely road and running like a champion even when there's not a single soul in sight to cheer you on. Running is all about having the desire to train and persevere until every fiber in your legs, mind, and heart is turned to steel. And when you've finally forged hard enough, you will have become the best runner you can be. And that's all that you can ask for.
McCoy: Oh, there isn't any shortage of views clamoring to challenge my own. That's what we call the viewpoints of the pinheads, and fortunately nothing forces me to pay any attention to them.Plato: Except your own self-interest.McCoy, laughing: This just keeps getting better. I'm supposed to pay attention to the pinheads out of my own self-interest?Plato: Otherwise you must do all the hard work of challenging your own positions all by yourself. Isn't it better to get some help with so difficult a task? And wouldn't you call those who help you out your friends?McCoy: Why should I challenge my own positions? That's the job of my enemies, who it's my job to vilify.Plato: I would have thought it the job of your most valued friends.McCoy: I can't tell whether you're putting me on or not. Is this some kind of Ali G or Borat scam you're trying to pull here? Just answer me that. Are you putting me on? Have my stupid staff screwed up again and let in some Sacha Baron Cohen operative?Plato: I am sincere.McCoy: So I'm actually supposed to believe that you think friends are the ones who try to refute you?Plato: Certainly, when what I say is wrong; and I can't be certain it's not wrong unless I hear the best of the refutations that can be offered. And I hope I am a good enough friend to return the favor.--from the chapter entitled "Plato on Cable News," pp. 350-351
So maybe the difference isn't language. Maybe it's this: animals do neither good nor evil. They do as they must do. We may call what they do harmful or useful, but good and evil belong to us, who chose to choose what we do. The dragons are dangerous, yes. They can do harm, yes. But they're not evil. They're beneath our morality, if you will, like any animal. Or beyond it. They have nothing to do with it. We must choose and choose again. The animals need only be and do. We're yoked, and they're free. So to be with an animal is to know a little freedom...
This book says 'life isn't fair' and I'm telling you, one and all, you betterbelieve it. I got a fat spoiled son�he's not gonna nab Miss Rheingold. And he's always gonna be fat, evenif he gets skinny he'll still be fat and he'll still be spoiled and life will never be enough to make himhappy, and that's my fault maybe�make it all my fault, if you want�the point is, we're not created equal,for the rich they sing, life isn't fair. I got a cold wife; she's brilliant, she's stimulating, she's terrific; there'sno love; that's okay too, just so long as we don't keep expecting everything to somehow even out for usbefore we die.
But life isn’t about learning to forgive those who have hurt you or forgetting your past. It’s about learning to forgive yourself for being human and making mistakes. Yes, people disappoint us all the time. But the harshest lessons come when we disappoint ourselves. When we put our trust and our hearts into the hands of the wrong person and they do us wrong. And while we may hate them for what they did, the one we hate most is ourself for allowing them into our private circle. How could I have been so stupid? How could I let them deceive me? We all go through that. It’s humanity’s Brotherhood of Misery.
Girls say to me, very reasonably, 'why isn't it a bunch of girls? Why did you write this about a bunch of boys?' Well, my reply is I was once a little boy - I have been a brother, a father, I am going to be a grandfather. I have never been a sister, or a mother, or a grandmother. That's one answer. Another answer is of course to say that if you - as it were - scaled down human beings, scaled down society, if you land with a group of little boys, they are more ike a scaled-down version of society than a group of little girls would be. Don't ask me why, and this is a terrible thing to say because I'm going to be chased from hell to breakfast by all the women who talk about equality - this is nothing to do with equality at all. I think women are foolish to pretend they are equal to men, they are far superior and always have been. But one thing you can't do with them is take a bunch of them and boil them down, so to speak, into a set of little girls who would then become a kind of image of civilisation, of society. The other thing is - why aren't they little boys AND little girls? Well, if they'd been little boys and little girls, we being who we are, sex would have raised its lovely head, and I didn't want this to be about sex. Sex is too trivial a thing to get in with a story like this, which was about the problem of evil and the problem of how people are to live together in a society, not just as lovers or man and wife.
Wehehehehell, if it isn’t Ollie-Ollie-oxidant-free..."You can take…all the tea in China…put it in a big brown…bag for me.He’s as sweet as tupelo honey; he’s an angel of the first degree.Men with insight…men in granite…knights in armor bent on…chivalry.He’s as sweet as…tupelo honey; just like honey, baby…from the bee."=> For those who read and liked "When Irish eyes are sparkling"Can i have a musician here?