Bitch on the Blog

May 4, 2018

Wittgenstein’s Poker

Pope said “a little learning is a dangerous thing”. Depends how you define dangerous. I am more interested where little learning leaves the learner and their audience.

Yes, I know I currently do my blog’s name honour by succumbing to anything that lends itself to bitch about. There is a blogger who, some months ago, signed up for a dilettante’s course in philosophy. Better late than never. Definition of dilettante: “A person who dabbles in a subject for enjoyment but without serious study”.  That’s great. Not that she enjoys her course.

Dabble for enjoyment? I once grew horseradish for enjoyment. Little did I know that some years later some pompous old fart (one of his “friends” words not mine) would come along and take offence (to the point of, yes, deleting my comment), that I bloody recognized the flowers horseradish produces when POF (pompous old fart) had predicted that he’d be 99 % certain that NO one would guess his “guess the flower” competition. I didn’t even guess. I KNEW. It was bad enough that his 99 % certainty was shattered; far worse that it was me, of all people, who did so. Anyway, POF edited all comments so that it appears that I am a cheat who pipped one of his worshippers to the post. I have little hope of them getting over it.

Yes, back to the subject. Dilettantes. As it happens the person I pipped to the post also happens to be the one who took up said philosophy class. In my late teens and early twenties, indeed to this day, I have seen people sweat, weep and generally die in increments trying to get to grips with Wittgenstein. Not this little beauty of a dilettante. She read Wittgenstein’s biography in two days or so flat and now is an authority on Wittgenstein’s take on the world. Not that that makes her dangerous (see above). It just makes her look somewhat … What? You decide …

It gave me great joy that one of her blogging “friends” (the Sculptor if you must know) picked her up on her hyperbole. Say what you like about the Sculptor but when he is in fine form he is in fine form. He was in such fine form that our Wittgenstein expert didn’t actually pick up on his subtly ridiculing her.

Today, her blog entry is on Bertrand Russell. I have no info as to how long it took her to read HIS autobiography (let’s say a week, max, Speedy Gonzales she is) but rest assured she now knows all there is to know about Bertrand Russell. Not least how often he was married. That’s it: If you want to know about someone’s mindset delve into their love life.

On a point of housekeeping: For every post I publish I have written at least twenty – too risque to see the day of light. This can’t go on. I need to find a new patch with a more benign blog name to divert my attention from the vacuous. I don’t know: White Noise?

U

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April 11, 2018

Reasoning

Just came across one of those marvels, nay, marbles: “Your logic is right”.

Let’s leave aside that the person who this accolade was bestowed upon didn’t employ logic. They stated an opinion. A variety of which you can find on many a blogger’s armchair wisdom of how to deal with world affairs. Why some of them aren’t ashamed of both stating the obvious or think that their three short paragraphs amateur assessment of how best to handle the Syrian conflict (for example) holds water in a balloon easily punctured, I don’t know. Actually, I do know. It’s called inflation. Of what? Don’t ask. I have more needles than time to prick balloons.

Yes, so, “Your logic is right”, the innocent sycophant tells their blogging icon. My question, and it’s a genuine one, not least one for Looney: Can logic ever be wrong? Or isn’t logic, by its definition* and when employed correctly, always right?

U

*”logic – reasoning conducted or assessed according to strict principles of validity”. Up to and including “strict principles” my world was in order. “… of validity”? It’s a bit like a slippery and very lively eel wriggling its way to freedom and confounds all I think logic stands for.

February 25, 2017

Impetus

Filed under: Amusement,Philosophy — bitchontheblog @ 22:41
Tags:

Ask me a question or two. Anything will do. If I can I will answer them though won’t necessarily be able to do so; but that’s not the point. Think of it as stoking a fire.

U

January 23, 2016

Zen

Filed under: Communication,Human condition,Philosophy,Vicious — bitchontheblog @ 23:05

Dearest Sweetest Hearts, and arseholes who too read my pourings and too lazy to say what you have to say, let’s assume that I have lived three thirds of my alloted time (loose roof tiles and car accidents notwithstanding): I am on the home stretch. Which is NOT sad. What is sad, and I can’t forgive myself, that I can’t leave passion, fire in my innards behind. I wish I were … I don’t know … indifferent. That’s it. Indifferent. Fuck most things, little touches me. Bliss. I am indifferent. Fat chance. The grail. I so wish, I so wish … what does it take to become a true Stoic, someone I define as not to be touched by anything (at least on the surface)? It ain’t going to happen.

In fact it’s so bad I am running a parallel blog. Not physically. In my mind. That blog is so full of venom, useful venom, truths you can only dream of. Mirror mirror on the wall, who is the what’s it of them all? Close contest. Most people are tender little plants. To name but two, the biblical Rachel and the Samaritan John of fanny flannel fame (which I find vaguely offensive since he is gay). That I haven’t ripped them apart in their blogs’ constant snivelling is a miracle only attributable to my upbringing, natural tact and that I don’t want them to set Sicilian bulldogs onto me. As long as amusement is mine, and it is, I shall keep that lid on my steam.

Thank you to all of you who gave thought to my last post’s lament. That I am still under the weather after last Sunday’s storm is an understatement. I lost a week in a haze of trying to reconcile reality with my concept (and expectation) of the world. I sometimes wish, indeed pray, I were different (entirely selfish because “different” in this context only means my less hurt/bleeding. Peace).

Slight reprimand to Jean whose riposte to Looney I found a little waspish: Looney is a learned man, Jean. I wouldn’t mind playing squash with him because I’d know from the outset I’d be in the corner by the end of it. Yes, Looney, in the wake of Epictetus you reminded me of an anecdote (same school – Zenos and Chrysippus) and since Jean is fond of dogs maybe appealing, and reconciling, to her too, and chiming in with your, Loony, mentioning the fates:

“The Stoics had an image with which to evoke our condition as creatures, at times able to affect change, yet always subject to external necessities: We are like dogs who have been tied to an unpredictable cart. Our leash is long enough to give us a degree of leeway, yet not long enough to let us wander wherever we please.”

U

 

 

 

 

October 28, 2015

Less haste more speed

Filed under: Accuracy,Amusement,Peace,Philosophy — bitchontheblog @ 10:45
Tags: , , ,

I think time to be in too much of a hurry.

However. Yes, the dreaded HOWEVER. Sometimes time slinks and sloshes as if it were a never ending commodity.

That hour going back last Sunday caught me out big time, and I haven’t adjusted yet. I wish there were more continuity in life. Let time be. Up with the cockerel (that’s hens), feet down at dusk. Saves on electricity. Natural order of things. Man dragging woman (at her hair) back into the cave, Bambi being Bambi cute, and dinosaurs. Not sure about dinosaurs. One moment they Tyrannus Rex you, the next they are extinct.

“Slinks”. Do you remember Slinky? That metal coil slinking its way down the stairway? I gave one to the Angel at the early end of his childhood. And had the distinct feeling he was less impressed than I was. In my experience you need a spine to make your way downstairs. Unless, of course, as I did, circa 1997, just having moved to a new house and trying to find my bearings – getting a feel for the place, you slip and slide the whole way. No damage done. And no, I was NOT drunk as some helpful friends suggested by way of comfort. I am never drunk. Mainly because I don’t like losing control. Yes, so there I was at the bottom of the stairs, on my back – and went, momentarily, into shock. It’s another fine example of when time takes on a whole new dimension. A bit like toothache. A minute or five do stretch into eternity.

To put a piece into the puzzle: It’s years and years and years (remember we are talking time) that I have worn a wrist watch. I don’t like shackles. Which is why I’d be a soul destroying non participating partner in anything vaguely bondage. So, yes, I don’t do time. Neither do I carry a handy/mobile/cell phone. If and when pressed (for time) I will ask strangers what the time is and they look it up on their handy/mobile/cell phone. A great conversation starter. People, first startled, are happy to be asked. For anything. TIME? Then you weed the obsessive (it’s 0923 and five seconds) from the slap dash (it’s about ten).

Am sure Beckett is still waiting for Godot … I like waiting. A subject that can wait. For another time.

U

January 9, 2014

Don’t dwell

May I declare my hand: Germs and I are NOT on a good footing. Germs and Germans being only two letters apart.

Still, I do see the reason for germs. Don’t even think ‘Antibiotics’ of which all of you take far too much. I call it the Oppenheimer dilemma: No sooner do you mess around with a bit of nuclear fusion five seconds later Hiroshima is bombed. And it’s all your fault.

I am cleaning, and by way of an unwelcome Eureka (that’s Greek for thanks but no thanks) I have come to an unsavory conclusion: Delude yourselves. Dirt wins. Particularly the invisible. Will discuss this later with my brother’s wife since she is the Ueber Haus Frau of all times. And I don’t mean this in either an ironic or sardonic way. She is.

U

February 8, 2013

Buttoned up

Filed under: Philosophy — bitchontheblog @ 19:24
Tags: , , , , , , ,

What would you rather be? A button or a zip? Don’t answer this question in haste. There are considerations to be made.

Buttons will fall off. Never to be found again.

Zips may be faster to do up than buttons. They also are notoriously unreliable. For more reasons than the first that may come to your mind. What comes to your mind depends on who you are.

Unless you are a dressmaker or a taylor you are unlikely to ever have stitched a zip. Yet even the most inept will have tried, at some point in their lives – say, post childhood and pre marriage and after your mother has died and before joining the Navy – to sew on a button. There is more to sewing on a button than meets the uninitiated eye. Take it from me. I know. I even learnt (age 10) how to make button HOLES. Button holes that have stood the test of time. Reinforced. Yes, two hours a week. Wednesday afternoons. If ever I have known evil in a woman it was that terrible teacher. She was huge with a matronly bosom to match and marked me down as “Ursula is too ambitious”. Talk about motivating your pupils. Luckily, in an emergency, I know how to hold my tongue. To this day I do have a particularly intricate  piece I made then – a thing of beauty – and when I happen upon it I do hold my finger up to her. No, not really. In those days fingers were for needle work – not to be held up.

Other than that buttons are – unlike zips – like rabbits. You will accumulate them. Whether you like it or not. Spares will come with every suit. And will be with you long after that piece of clothing has hit landfill, recycling or the charity shop. On top of which – health warning: this is getting confessional – I can’t help myself cutting buttons off garments before discarding the bit they were attached to. There is something eternal about buttons. Unlike zips. Which either work or they don’t.

U

December 29, 2012

Riding high

Filed under: Philosophy — bitchontheblog @ 15:32
Tags: ,

Just had revolutionary thought.

We are defined by those who like us. Most certainly we are defined by those WE like.

Ha, get your brain round that one whilst cleaning the bathroom and before writing your next novel. I am in bloody awe of myself. On the strength of that thought alone I am sure Nietzsche would have accepted me as his apprentice. Not because he’d agreed with my notion but because he’d have known that I would have saved that horse in Turin on his behalf.

U

November 17, 2011

Farcical

Filed under: Communication,Philosophy — bitchontheblog @ 15:28
Tags: ,

Looney just left me a comment which reminds me that if there were a title for Queen of Empty Promises I’d win at least a duchy. With a horse. I shall call it Rosinante in remembrance of Sancho Panza whose love of food and wine I share. Only to find myself building windmills which I promptly have to fight. Any of you may audition for the part of Dulcinea but don’t keep your hopes up.

So many ideas in the oven, broilers on the boil. It’s crazy. It’s also a sure fire way not to get anywhere. Or, oh so witty, get nowhere fast. Spare me. As my mentor, her of the chocolate, tartly remarked the other day: “It’s all very well, Ursula, but you have got to follow THROUGH.” I know. I know. I know. I couldn’t agree more. But then I do like the chase. It’s the man in me. And the perfectionist dormant, possibly long dead. There are people in my life, sniffy, because I have “let them down” not being my old perfect self. Well, sorry. You know: As life goes on there is more to tend to than bloody perfection. Go and scrub your own doorstep if you must. Don’t wax it though. You may slip.

So, yes, Looney. Einstein will be taken care of, eventually. Now his flesh having fallen off the bone he will have more room for manoeuvre (turning in his grave).

U

PS Stock phrase of my youth, encompassing any eventuality: “It’s all relative”

September 28, 2011

Note to self

Filed under: Culture,language,Philosophy — bitchontheblog @ 02:22
Tags: , , , , , , ,

I’ve got to watch it. It’s one thing to pride myself on never, yes really – never, using a spell checker. Why would I? Either I know how to spell or I don’t. And I can live with my mistakes and typos even if they are embarrassing at times. Am still traumatized from the time when the x on my keyboard gave out.  Currently the ‘i’ sticks. Maybe my subconscious telling me to be more ego something. Will come back to eggs in a minute.

So in an idle moment tonight I pondered on what using more than one language – on a daily basis – does to your mind. What is a catalysator to some is, naturally, a catalyst to another (English that is). Have you ever noticed that when addressing the very person you’d preferably not make a fool of yourself in front of is precisely the person you will? It’s a sideshoot of Sod’s law. Can also be observed when you quickly nip out to get, say, a pint of milk at seven in the morning only to bump into someone you’d hoped would never see you in curlers (and before any of you run away and unsubscribe because you do not wish to be associated with someone in curlers stop the hysteria now: I don’t use curlers, mainly because my hair is curly by nature.) Yes, so there I was congratulating Charles on his daughter’s imagination and, needless to say, giving away my lack of education by using the word “catalysator” instead of “catalyst”. Why this occurs to me ca 24 hrs after writing my comment I do not know. But then my brain seems to have a mind of its own.

Where were we? Eggs. I rarely quote other people. Being full of myself I am content to spout my own nonsense rather than quoting George Bernard Shaw or, worse, Oscar Wilde. However, believing in exceptions to rules and also easily amused I came across this, in The Little Book of Wrong Shui:

Eggsistentialism

Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Use an egg box like everyone else and stop being such a poser.

Sartre eat your heart out.

U

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