Thursday, February 09, 2017

Old age is futile Purgatory: Excess to Human Conformity

‘You’re water that flows out of itself, away from itself. Where’s your spring, where’s mine? You flow into me, away from me.’
~Bathroom quote

Diego’s hair is white and thin-wreathed above his ears, thick and hard around his muzzle and spotty in deep valleys between his temples and his chin. No metaphor does justice to the slow death we all fight for even at the Mission; there’s no sex in the details and we’re not well worn leather or dry mud brick or other things with function. Old age is pain and medicine and penance for our youth; we are wise now but too weak to right the many wrongs we did on purpose. Old age is futile Purgatory and we sin in preparation.
— Christopher Cocca

Addressing a profoundly divided nation in his final presidential plea, Obama urged black and white America “to heed the advice of a great character in American fiction—Atticus Finch—who said, ‘You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view … until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.’ ” Good Professional Atticus versus Bad Unprofessional Atticus

Centrelink staff will use debt system inquiry to expose dysfunction, says union

Since we can never know anything for sure, it is simply not worth searching for certainty; but it is well worth searching for truth; and we do this chiefly by searching for mistakes, so that we can correct them...

Cyber crims just keep getting better

CSC managing director and vice president for Australia and New Zealand, Seelan Nayagam, will lead the company’s operations in the local market following the completion of its multibillion-dollar merger with the Enterprise Services division of Hewlett Packard Enterprise(HPE).

Combined CSC HPE business hands NZ post merger

“There was the day we swam in a river, a lake, and an ocean.
And the day I quit the job my father got me.
And the day I stood outside the door,
And listened to my girlfriend making love
To someone obviously not me, inside,

And I felt strange because I didn’t care.” 

 Moving Czech Story WWIIHe Saved 669 People In The Holocaust

AND FROM THE OTHER SIDE: “How is it playing out in Australia?”

Kremlin seeks apology from Fox News BBC

South China Sea already “militarised” MacroBusiness. Trump and Bannon are way behind the curve.

Be not afraid of growing slowly, be afraid only of standing still...

BC: Ten Longform Literary Essays About That Most Unliterary Of Sports, Football

You can prepare for the Super Bowl or you can avoid it – these pieces will help you either way.

How Tolstoy’s ‘War And Peace’ Can Be An Inspiration For Resistance To The New Administration

“Thinking in essentialist terms, Tolstoy felt that Napoleon failed to destroy Russia because the collective interests of Russian people aligned against him: a majority of people – wittingly or unwittingly – acted to undermine his agenda. Is it possible that we will see a similar alignment of grassroots interests now?”
I am a difficult person at work and proud of it FT. Sorry to see Lucy Kellaway will be leaving the FT, in order to retrain as a maths teacher. I’ll miss her writing

So the governance cart rolls into 2017. It will no doubt bring some good stories but, for the moment, there are enough crook ones to make your hair stand on end like, as Hamlet's ghost has it, "quills upon the fretful porpentine". Sad.

What Kafka’s stories have is a grotesque and gorgeous and thoroughly modern complexity. Kafka’s humour — not only not neurotic, but anti-neurotic, heroically sane — is, finally, a religious humour, but religious in the manner of Kierkegaard and Rilke and the Psalms, a harrowing spirituality against which even Ms. O’Connor’s bloody grace seems a little bit easy, the souls at stake pre-made.
   And it is this, I think, that makes Kafka’s wit inaccessible to children whom our culture has trained to see jokes as entertainment and entertainment as reassurance. It’s not that students don’t ‘get’ Kafka’s humour but that we’ve taught them to see humour as something you get — the same way we’ve taught them that a self is something you just have. No wonder they cannot appreciate the really central Kafka joke — that the horrific struggle to establish a human self results in a self whose humanity is inseparable from that horrific struggle. That our endless and impossible journey toward home is in fact our home. It’s hard to put into words up at the blackboard, believe me. You can tell them that maybe it’s good that they don’t ‘get’ Kafka. You can ask them to imagine his art as a kind of door. To envision us readers coming up and pounding, not just wanting admission but needing it, we don’t know what it is but we can feel it, this total desperation to enter, pounding and pushing and kicking, etc. That, finally, the door opens… and it opens outward: we’ve been inside what we wanted all along. Das ist komisch.

Australia in grip of sleep deprivation Meriton like structures 'epidemic'

The clouds change. The seasons pass over our woods and fields in their slow and regular procession, and time is gone before you are aware of it. In one sense, we are always traveling and traveling as if we did not know where we were going. In another sense, we have already arrived.
— Thomas Merton

‘Alas’, said the mouse, ‘the world is growing smaller every day. At the beginning it was so big that I was afraid, I kept running and running, and I was glad when at last I saw walls far away to the right and left, but these long walls have narrowed so quickly that I am in the last chamber already, and there in the corner stands the trap that I must run into’. ‘You only need to change your direction’, said the cat, and ate it up.

— Kafka