The chronicles of Ruin, continued.
Call me Ishmael said....intelligence is knowing what to do when you don't know what to do.
Anonymous said... When I don't know what to do,I come here.
10 September 2009 22:59
GOD GAVE ROCK'N'ROLL TO YOU. HANDEL: MESSIAH - Last two choruses - Worthy is the Lamb & Amen.
ONCE UPON A TIME IN DUBLIN. 21/12/2014
Filmed in Dublin, this is Harry Christophers and his early music gang, loosely known as The Sixteen, the scene of the first performance of Messiah in 1742. Blessing and honour, glory and power be unto Him. The entire perfomance, near perfect, in my opinion, is on the cyber ouija-board and - if you like this sort of thing- a rewarding use of a couple of Christmas hours. Even though the daffodils are long risen and the gladioli come again, out of turn, it is still winter. It has been dark here and Christmas, impudently colonising ancient mid-winter rejoicing, is nevertheless welcome, as is, no matter how often I hear it, Handel's joyous Messiah. Herewith wishing us all a good health, such love as we may find and such peace as we are permitted.
I don’t begrudge them their services and I love their
carols and to anyone here who is a believer I wish you a happy and a holy time,
in Heaven the bells are ringing. For the rest, as mrs narcolept says,
wherever you are I hope you withstand the weather, each other, the crassness
of it all, and emerge safely on the other side. Be glad, for the song has no ending.
to keep up with foreign sorrow. Our thoughts and prayers, as good
dwellers in the land of moral cliche, are infinitely elastic
but I am temporarily suspending my thoughts and prayers
for the Ebola victims, their heroic British carers - that nurse bloke,
isn't he just magic, Pope oughta make him a saint, if you ask me, if
he's a catholic, even if he's not - and their political
leaders and transferring them to the family, friends and team-mates of
that cricketer, the one who surprisingly had his head smashed-in
by a cricket ball, Oh and at the same time I must remember to include in
my thoughts and
prayers the poor cunt who threw the ball at his head in the first place. Who'da thought it, eh, a speeding projectile hitting someone on the head and killing them|?
I mean, I was thinking about and praying my arse off for Ebola victims
for just the longest time and I could still find some
kneeling-time for world cricket but with those people killed and
traumatised in the Cafe Lindt, down under, I had to kinda reach for the
newly imperative baton of sanctimonious futility which Prayer was passing me and start all over
again, thinking and praying like a good 'un, only not, obviously, for
the Raghead bastard who did it. And anyway, even if I was to have acted
like a proper Christian and not just a smarmy fucking hypocrite, if I'd
prayed for the deranged wog it wouldna worked because he was a fucking
muslim, no point praying for those Godless, heathenbastard fuckpigs, is
there, not with what they believe in, the God of Isaac and Abraham, I
mean, what kinda Godshit is that, Abraham?
I say I was praying for the victims of Cafe Lindt, and I was, at least
I was until those eight Aussie kids, was it eight, were killed the
following day and then Fuck me, Jesus, I hadda re-prioritise my whole
prayer schedule all over again. And that was before, back here, in the
land of the prayerful and thoughtful television news-watcher, that copper got topped in Liverpool and the
Chief Scouse Constable asked for prayers not just for this dead bloke
and his family and his mates but for the whole fucking police family.
Not sure if it was the Chief Constable or the head of the local police
lodge, the latter being the senior man it was probably him led the call
for rozzer-prayer. It's like it says at the top, seems like every time
you turn around there's another hard-luck story that you're gonna hear.
was reading somewhere about news saturation, about it resulting in a
condition described as Learned Helplessness. There is so much shit,
yet there is none of it which we can influence in the slightest fashion;
what is the point in knowing of it? As it comes in, from whoever deems
it newsworthy, hundred grand a year newsreaders emote their empty heads
off and I would, too, for that money, Christ, I'd rend my clothers,
tear my hair, weep and fucking wail and wear sackcloth and ashes for a
couple of hours a day in return for two grand a week. But I can't do it
for nothing, acting.
I don't actually care about the massacred, rich Pakistani children,
probably, in the scheme of things, better the children of the rich get
killed than the poor little fuckers crawling over the rubbish dumps. I
say that I cared but I don't, I simply don't. Oh, I can think myself
into others' horrors as well as the next man; all those people being
minced alive as the WTC towers collapsed in free fall, must've been
fucking awful for them; most of them, those that weren't shitting
themselves and biting their own flesh, would have thought that somehow
they'd be rescued, wouldn't have expected the fucking things just to
collapse and that would have been a bit of a mercy, not knowing,
expecting Bruce Willis to fly in and helicoper them all to safety,
yodelling WhoopeeKiYay Motherfuckers, but even so, as the floors started
to fall away under them and the beams and concrete started smashing
into them it would have been a desperate, shit-spurting horrorshow. Aw, fuck, I dowanna die with my pants all fulla my own shit. Doesn't matter son, yer getting minced-up so small nobody'll ever know. They just gonna give yer relations a box with some rubble and dust and bitsa mince.
the kids in Peshawar, they'd have been confused and terrified; the
pain, the smell, the blood and shit; the noisy, angry men, shouting at
them, shooting them, killing them; the ghastly realisation that their own
grown-ups could not save them from other grown-ups; poor little
bastards. But I don't care about it. It was a world away. And if I did
choose to feign caring then, tomorrow, tomorrow and tomorrow, Sorrow's
emmisaries would visit other victims in other lands, demanding again my
thoughts, my prayers. skymadeupnewsandfilth have us so filled now with
horror, mayhem and endless slaughter that, like Macbeth, we are become, for our own trembling sanity, innured to it all. And all our yesterdays have lighted fools the way to dusty death.
But even should we want it so, there's
nothing special about this atrocity,
no matter what skymadeupnewsandfilth piously says. Uncle Sam does it
all the time, for Freedom, y'unnerstand, gotta kill them nigger
children, because God put our great republic here to do that very
thing. Never was a holier, righteouser, more freedom-lovin' nation of slave masters than the Yew-nited States;
shit, sonny, ain't you never hearda Merkan Exceptionalarityism? All in
a day's work for the US AirCorp, murdering some nigger kids; what, pray, Emily, Dermot and JonSox, is different about the Talimen doing it?
not just Uncle Sam; our last government and opposition are
Macbeth-steeped in blood, not the blood of noble conflict, but the blood
of atrocious warcrime, of civilian-targeted firebombings, of drive-by
shooting; they must hear the torture-shrieks of Abu Graib and Camp
Guantanamo, Miliband major and Jack Torture, the agonised cries which
they have tried so hard, on behalf of their American masters, to stifle; by comparison, the Taliban engage in child's play.
the haughty, greedy whores, Tony and Imelda, to grubby spear carriers
in the parliamentary ranks, there is no Tory or Labour member who can plead innocence of atrocity far graver than those perpetrated by - whatever you want to call them - Mujahadein, Taliban, Baa'thist, Sunni or Shi'ite, the Ragheads, whom we must now obediently excoriate anew.
Former British minister, war criminal and common crook, Geoff Hoon, could speak to us of atrocity.
Hoon on being biombed to democracy. From wikipedia
Shortly after the US/UK led invasion of Iraq began in 2003, following
an admission by the Ministry of Defence that Britain had dropped 50
airborne cluster bombs in the south of Iraq and left behind up to 800
unexploded bomblets, it was put to Hoon in a Radio 4 interview that an
Iraqi mother of a child killed by these cluster bombs
would not thank the British army. He replied "One day they might." Hoon
continued "I accept that in the short term the consequences are
terrible. No one minimises those and I'm not seeking to do so," he said.
"But what I am saying is that this is a country that has been
brutalised for decades by this appalling regime and that the restoration
of that country to its own people, the possibility of their deciding
for themselves their future ... and indeed the way in which they go
about their lives, ultimately, yes, that will be a better place for
people in Iraq."
Hoon and Extraordinary Rendition
Hoon was condemned by an international delegation of European MPs for
evading questions about Britain's co-operation with the CIA's so-called
'extraordinary rendition' programme. Hoon, then Minister for Europe, was being quizzed in the wake of Dick Marty's Council of Europe report which found extensive involvement of European countries, including Britain, in the US kidnapping and torture programme.
Hoon was one of the MPs named in the 2010 sting operation on political lobbying by the Channel 4Dispatches
programme. Hoon told an undercover reporter that he wanted to translate
his knowledge and contacts into something that "frankly makes money". On 22 March 2010 it was announced he had been suspended from the Parliamentary Labour Party, alongside Patricia Hewitt and Stephen Byers.
a war crimnal of Hoon's untroubled conscience and dark
accomplishments, being supended from a party he was anyway leaving does
not even amount to a smack on the greedy wrist.
and most of his erstwhile colleagues are responsible for a global
cataclysm of warcrimes, atrocities, human rights violations, for a
massive bilking, by GlobaCorp, of trillions of tax dollars and pounds,
for setting alight the Middle East and South East Asia, for making
millions refugee and for the killing and maiming of hundreds of
thousand. At the end of his crime spree, Hoon whined that, now, the
right thing, the responsible thing for him to do was make some money.
For his family.
Filth like Geoff Hoon make the Taliban look like juvenile delinquents; worse, he is cause to their effect.
Lest we forget quite how rancid was NewLabour, its every last parliamentary, constituency and union member, here's Geoff, setting the record straight.
A deranged, megalomaniacal political hoodlum today dismissed the news of falling oil prices as variously Scaremongering, Project Fear and The Sort Of Negative Reporting We Have Come To Expect From Those Who Dispute My Infallibility, ie everyone in the world except my successor as First Gnasher, I mean Minister, Ms McSturgeon.
Just because every single bastard in the whole fucking world says the oil price is falling doesn't make it so. I take my cue from Nobel laureate, Professor Jim McNumpty and he confidently predicted that oil prices would soar. And so they must have. There, d'ye ken, now? That's the sort of faultless logic which wins the hearts and minds of unemployed, cross-dressing, wife-beating drunkards. Millions of whom will soon be leaving my party in droves.
The right thing for Scotland is that the oil price rises, continues to rise and that the North Sea provides secure, well-paid, highly-skilled jobs for everyone who votes for the Tribesmen's Party and provides them for thousands of years to come.
That's what I decreed before the Referendum and that, now that I have won the Referendum and run away to London, like every other fucking Jock on the make, is exactly what will happen.
Alexei Salmondski, former boss of the Jock Praesideum is stark, raving mad.
Well, now letmebeclear. Coz this is very important. As the prime minister. Of this great country. Of many. But not enough. Hard working families. I and my team. Are committed. In a very real sense. To telling you. Who are after all, my boss. The truth. Not about Mr Hague or Mr Clark or Mr Greer. And not about any of those supposedly murdered children. Did I mention I had a dead child? Well, you'll know then that I won't take any lectures about paedophilia in the Tory party. But that's all in the past. If Mrs May has anything to do with it. But apart from that, my team is committed to telling you, their bosses, the truth about things. Only not when it might help the Labour Party. And that is why. You will not hear me. Firing a round of fucks. Into Comrade Salmondski. Fuck me, no. 'Sthe very last thing I'd do. If I was to show him up for the worthless fucking chancer that he is. And is shown to be by the plummeting oil prices. If I were to do that then that would only help Mr Miliband's nutters up there, up there in Scotland. A Scotland which I am very proud to have retained as part of the United Kingdom. Even though I didn't. It was just that anyone who had experienced a moment of sobriety in the last decade could see through Comrade Alexei and his yappy little mongrel, Gnasher.
Gnasher Sturgeon. Head Girl of the Scottish Assembly. She also knows fuck all about oil. Or anything else.
I mean, obviously, as a spiritual man, I don't wanna pay any income tax. Hare Krishna, man, Peace and like, Love, man. You know?
Flashy Scouse Hindus, don't you just fucking hate them?
Well they said you was high-classed
but that was just a lie.
was a series on telly, recently, about some appalling Indian hotel
which catered to monied riff-raff like these two as well as to minor
jet-set filth, it was like Claridges with Curry, every bastard bowing
and fucking scraping to rich, bejewelled Hindi filth. It was open-mouthed,
jaw-dropping telly, people acting like Maharajahs. I wouldn't give India a penny until they hang some of these bastards and confiscate their money, their homes and their elephants.
couple of summers ago I saw Much Ado About Curry, I mean Nothing, at
Stratford upon Avon, a cast of second-generation immigrant Indian
luvvies mocking - none so racist as the caste-conscious - the Goodness-Gracious Empire snobbery of those whom they had
thought of as their great grandparents but who are in fact, people alive and
well, working in and patronising this shithole of a time-warp hotel. Welcome to the Hotel Raj Britannia.
Anni and Wotsisname, the not-murderer-but-murderer-really, would have fitted right in,
stuck up their own arses, posing and poncing and dancing their seven-step Hindi vows; maybe they had their repulsive, social climbing wedding knees-up there. The staff would all have lain down in order for bride and groom to walk on them and the guests would have pinned rupee notes to their garish costumes. It was an India far removed from the space-racing biggest democracy on the planet of popular reportage and while Mr and the late Mrs Dewani are of Ugandan origin, their religious and cultural ties are obviously to what we used to call the sub-continent; neither would pass Norman Tebbit's Test Match test, more jumped-up wog and buttonhead wogess than the rich, cultured, Tory-voting European, beloved of Lord Norm of ChildBeastings.
The sister of the murdered Mrs Dewani has appeared on the GlobaTube I don't know how many times.
It's not as often as Bill Roache on Coronation Street
but she might yet give him a run for his money.
fuck me, Vishnu, if only I had of known that he was a filthy pervert, a bit of a Straight Simon Hughes,
maybe I would of talked my little sister out of marrying the filthy
degenerate bastard. And maybe she would of still been alive, to-day.
Maybe, too, if the bride
hadn't immersed herself in all this showy vulgarity, all this
snooty superstition and sham, maybe if the parents hadn't all been such gaudy vulgarians, maybe if she'd married a whaddatheycallem, these oh-so-charming Hindi families, an untouchable, is that it, an unclean one? Maybe if she'd married an untouchable, instead of some preening, neurotic prick, maybe she'd
have been alive to-day. Maybe if they'd honeymooned less pretentiously in Paris, she'd still have been alive, maybe if she'd told her ghastly family to go and fuck themselves, she'd still have been alive. But marrying an unclean one, well, actually, and Oh My Goodness Gracious
Me, marrying out of one's own caste is so much worse than death, don't you agree, sahib?
and Christine Hamilton-Poundland, seen here about to film themselves
having SeniorSex, Poundland-style, for Christine's latest Channel 5
porno-documentary series, are hopingto become the Poundlanders' first husband-and-wifeteam of MPs. Only Mr Fruitcake won't let them......"
And nor has he. In true Poundland fashion, Mr Fruitcake, the world's leading expert in parliamentary expenses fiddles, has seen to it that the con-artist formerly known as the Tory Cash4Questions minister, Neil Hamilton, (prop. Mr Mohamed al Fayed) has been caught robbing the donations of elderly Poundland donors, who had sent their fivers and tenners for Nigel to spend on whores and booze and hats.
This cunt, fumed Lord Poundland, has been charging the party, my party, for staying overnight at his wife's place, who does he think he is, me?
Although he and his missus are beyond embarrassment, Neil Hamilton has now, following scrutiny of his expenses claims, withdrawn his application to become the Poundland PPC for the Redneck-on-Sea constituency. I wouldn't want to be swimming in his sea of personal disappointment. After two periods of political expenses dishonesty, however, surely the Guardian or the PBC can find a space for a man of Mr Hamilton's quality.
As for Lord Poundland, he just goes from strength to strength, one fuck-up after another and as with the wretched Hamiltons, continually displays an unpleasant habit of using vulnerable people and then shitting all over them. His key personnel are crooks, liars, thugs, racists and misogynists or some other form of embarrassment; his personal life is scandalous, his work record questionable, his political alliances disgraceful; his policies are non-existent and his judgement laughable.
Favourite books, where would you start? They're all favourites, it's only now and again that I will holler OhTheFuckWithThis and bin something - needs to be a spectacularly bad book for me not even to permit mrs ishmael to take it to the accursed charity shop but consign it, shreddded, to the compost heap.
Gutenberg and Tyndale,
William, busted and burned alive just for writing.
the Nazi bonfires, the obscenity trials, the voices of my early teachers, these all tend to make me cherish the very idea of books; to this day I cannot open wide and damage the spine of even the mangiest paperback. I believe I have mentioned previously A Canticle For Liebowitz, a science fiction post-apocalyptic novel in which fragments of scorched shopping lists, the only surviving written materials, are worshipped by fearful and ignorant survivors. My judgements on the quality of books similarly become secondary to a belief in their intrinsic importance. If the house was on fire and I could grab a couple of books probably the first among them would be How To Build Shaker Furniture, by Thos. Moser, Sterling Publishing, New York, 1977.
I remember, in the 1990s, I was enthusing about a then-new claw-hammer to an antique furniture trade colleague; it was the same configuration as a normal claw hammer
but it was the weight of a pin hammer.
great for knocking-in a couple of pins and sinking the heads with the flat side but you cannot use it for pin removal
I liked this hammer so much that I bought a score of them, some I have given as gifts, several I still have stashed, in my desk, just in case. I used to make loads of bookshelves/cases and the backboards required scores of panel pins, many of which would bend as you banged them in; what I'd have to do was put down the ordinary pin hammer and pick-up a pair of pincers to extract the bent pin and then start again; the ordinary pin hammer has no claw and I couldn't use a proper claw-hammer because it was too heavy, and I was delighted to find this smaller, lighter version. Hmmm, said Tony, 's'appened to you. What's happened to me? Oh, you reach an age when you get poetic about tools.
Tony was correct for not only was I squeezing into my own daily reality a belated if haphazard appreciation of tool anthropology and sociology, I was also purchasing a more formal understanding - books about tools and procedures and one day, in Victorian Llandudno, North Wales, I came across Moser's book which was ostensibly a selection of drawings and cutting lists for the making of a slew of Shaker pieces but was more importantly a tour-de-force in technical writing of the spiritual kind.
I don't like Shaker furniture much
and there would be a long, cold day in Hell before I attempted making some but Moser's writing was and remains a rare treasure; here he is in his chapter, Materials.
A Covenenant with Wood.
A craftsman is but a handmaiden to his materials. The inherent qualities of wood limit to a certain extent the cabinetmaker's choices. Unlike plastic or rubber, concrete or steel, wood has a mind of its own. It is not easily bent and when bent wants to return in time to its original form. It is easy to break along its grain, yet it will withstand considerable shearing force. It warps without provocation and swells and contracts with the seasons as though it had entered a conspiracy with the calendar to loosen chair rungs in the winter and swell drawers shut in the summer. Wood cracks mindlessly, can shed a finish with disastrous effect, refuses to be cut from north to south, yet yields submissivley from east to west. It splinters, bows, cups, shrinks, loosens, swells, dents, cracks and changes colour. Yet to many of us wood remains the most pleasing of all natural materials, for in the richness and variety of its grain is to be found nature's texture incarnate. Wood is a kind of a bridge between man and that organic mass of growing things he calls Mother Earth. Wood is a renewable resource which has given us warmth and shelter and provided unrivaled joy to the eye and to the touch since long before recorded time. Along with water and stone it is our most fundamental material - without it our world would be an alien place. In wood man fashioned his first tool, in wood he built the ladder with which he has ascended over the millennia. It literally surrounds us from the cradle to the coffin. Wood may well be called the foundation of civilisation.
When the craftsman commits himself to work in wood, he becomes a party in a contract. If he sensitive to his material, he enters into a kind of covenant in which he acknowledges a certain subservience to his medium. He agrees (1) to come to understand, not in a cognitive way, but through feelings, the nature of wood: (2) to admit at the very beginning that there is no such thing as perfection in wood, for in spite of all his efforts there will always be some blemish, some telltale error, recorded in the wood though known only to the builder; (3) in laying-out and forming joints, to anticipate the inevitable movement that will occur long after the work is finished.
Although my primary school teacher would chide Moser for his failings in grammar and punctuation, these are knowings and sentiments rarely expressed in technical books, certainly not in the current spate of appalling wordworking magazines and partworks, none of which are worth the glossy paper on which they are printed.
It turns out that Moser, as well as running a respected cabinetmakers business taught communication at a New England university and as far as I'm concerned the drawings of Shaker furniture are as irrelevant as are now the Shakers, themselves. Moser writes about handtools, powertools, machinery, about fixtures, adhesives, abrasives and finishes as only an expert can, few can combine craft and communication as enthusiastically (Greek, filled with God) as does Moser. Although the book is rich in photographs of sturdy, often vintage tools and machines, Moser, as did the late Fred Dibnah, offers pencil drawings, too, of his subjects; maybe there were no cameras to hand, there was no computer-aided design, maybe he just likes doing the drawings, there is something magical about drawing a project in advance and seeing how close comes the finished article.
There has been a lot of technical writing which is excellent; I have all sorts of compendia on how How To Run An Efficient Household, Manage A Garden and Compose A Letter of Condolence; mainly these are from before the Second World War, often Victorian, punctilious, reeking with snobbery and etiquiette yet miracles of concision, expertise and style but even as late as the 'sixties, publishers such as Readers Digest were producing well-written, comprehensive guides to home maintainance and the Automobile Association printed useful and understandable guides to car maintainance but all of these date from before before and the industrial dominance of Japan brought badly translated manuals and brochures which were no more than gibberish. These days, finding someone who not only knows but can also readily and pleasingly communicate that of which they speak is a rare experience.
On television, the image - or the form - always triumphs over the substance, the presenter is King.
....and I just think it's all, well, wonderful, really, I mean, I've had a number one record, they gimme a medal, the Queen did, and I'm never off the telly...
Be it the ghastly and over-exposed Brian Cox, silhouetted atop all the world's mountain peaks
or the equally ghastly Neil Oliver, ruggedly tossing his rock-star locks at the camera or be it any member of a regiment of absurd science tarts, from the hideous, sneering hobgoblin, Tony Robinson and his geriatric grave-robbers,
to the cackling crone, the fearsomely well-scrubbed Dr Ruth
of the Victorian this, the Georgian that, the Mediaeval other or be it the ubiquitous media tart, Dr Lucy Lisp, stripping-off in Regency lingerie or bumping and grinding with that ridiculous old Len chap, off the dancing show,
'ere, missus, do fuck off, eh, just for a month or two?
the pseudo-scholar presenter is slave not to science but to showbusiness, like unto which business there is no other.
And so, disappointingly, was last night's BBC4 exposition of quantum physics, or mechanics, or whatever it's called. Or not called.
mr bungalow bill and I, at the very least, had been keenly anticipating BBC4's Secrets of Quantum Physics, presented by this fellow.
A presenter so far up his own paradox as to be risible.
I love the camera, me, and it loves me, too, donchathink?
Dr/Professor/Guru Jim al Khalili is, it turns out, a vain gabshite. Whether or not he was making sense of quantum physics cannot be known, can it? That is the point of it. Or the pointlessness of it, as you will. It almost seems heretical to even attempt to explain the inexplicable, to know the unknowable, as the scriptures have it.
Jim, though, in his universe, is infinitely capable and strove last night not to provoke or encourage but simply to entertain, to seduce. I have the books he mentioned - The Dancing Wu-Li Masters and the Tao of Physics and three minutes sat on the loo, glancing at them, would be more educational than a month of Jim and his showbiz bollocks.
Knowledge, now, of course, is digitised into little cubes of shit, Tweets and re-Tweets, people's minds too full of vanity-dribblings to tackle proper thinking, no attention span, no mental shelf-space, as I heard it termed recently, their imaginations handed-over, freely, to slab-faced, creepy, brain-dead American mutants.
Mr Mark Faceberg. Trust me, I want to own all your lives. Jim is right up their cyber street, his mind, like theirs, a linguistic desert, uninspired and repetitive - Einstein was at the height of his powers, Nils Bohr was at the height of his powers - and Jim and his producers' televisual devices were corny and unimaginative, a small, candy-striped marquee on the shore, in which Jim played Aunt Sally with some vague, tin-can permutation of relativity; a pair of spinning coins which he claimed demonstrated quantum physics, although they only demonstrated spinning heads-or-tails coins, Oh, and there was a leering, metaphysical cardsharp, determined to cheat reality.
Jim rode around, fitly, on his bike, to demonstrate power fluctuations in his dynamo-driven cycle lamp and thus the discovery of the quantum photon; Jim dived, fitly, into a wave-generating pool to demonstrate the differing powers of small and large waves. And Jim sauntered, fitly, through what was meant to be a nineteen-twenties jazz club but which actually resembled the studio of BBC Radio Four's Loose Ends show, the one in which Clive Anderson smirks and smarms and hisses and introduces terribly intelligent musicians playing terribly unlistenable-to music. I think it was at this jazzpoint that Jim mentioned Charlie Chaplin being at the height of his powers. Throughout, Jim seemed to want to climb through the screen at us, so close were his close-ups, so intense his cloudy summaries. It was all dreadfully Telly.
The thread running through last night's episode was the argument between Bohr and Einstein about the nature of physical reality, about its former certainties being compromised by the discovery and understanding of particles or quantums - quanta; by the belief that the mere observation of sub-atomic particles changed them or indeed, might have called them into being. This is a delightful conundrum, one which has enchanted me for some years, now, since I read those books, maybe before Jim did. I do not, however, need it proving or disproving.
Unsurprisingly, Jim's analagous demonstrations and his experiments with the tin-cans and the cardsharp - and eventually with laser beams - brought him down on the side of Bohr, a position, among scientists, common since the nineteen-forties, when everyone, of course, was at the height of their powers and one most laboriously and archly arrived at in last night's show.
Once, there was God, who said it was not for us to know, simply to obey. In my lifetime it is the BigBang we have sought to know,
to photograph, back through time. I never understand that shit, photographing stuff that isn't there, now. Clever people have told us that Stuff just came, in an instant, from nowhere, and nodding, as though we had understood, we have believed.
We have believed that once there was no time, no space, no matter, it all just invented itself. Yes, Stuff from non-stuff, everything from nothing, as hard to believe, as God, Himself, but Hey, that's what we're good at, believing shit.
Now, many of those - let's call them Jims - who once worshipped the BigBang are saying, Hang About, these Black Holes, and there are gazillions of the fucking things, what they tell us, the BlackHoles, is that there's actually shitloads of universes, popping in and out of each other, in, well, in BigBang moments; so, all that stuff, which, just like QE money, popped into existence, well, it actually just slipped-in ready-made, from next door, sort of thing, kinda. No, you don't have to believe that NoTime, NoMatter shit any more. We gotta new one for you. The Jims, you see, they'll fuck you up; NASA, the Hadron Collider, Hubble, it's all they wanna do, is fuck with your head, like priests, shamans, witch doctors, fucking Druids, they are all the same. The Jims want you to believe, for instance, there must be what they call intelligent Life, somewhere, and that we can find it. The reason they say that there must be is because they want there to be, not very scientific. A proper scientist would say, Well, fuck me, even if there were to be folks like us, maybe green, maybe with eight arms, whatever, but communicable-with, maybe there is a planet somewhere with exactly the same multiplicity of accidental circumstances as led to Life on Earth - y'know, a planet circling a sun burning at just exactly the right temperature at exactly the right distance, a moon of exactly the right size and gravitational pull and all the trillions of accidental chemical and physical combinations necessary to create amoeba and then all the accidental geological, climatological and horticultural conditions necessary for the growth, survival and ascent of species, only one of which has an opposable thumb and can do technology, thinking, speech, fire, the wheel, transport and the storage and retrieval of information, and eats and tortures all the other species, even if there are all those trillions of improbabilities, even if they all do happen elsewhere, there is no reason for them to be there just now, right now, in this infinitessimally tiny split second of time which we inhabit, is there? Pushing it a bit, don't you think? Makes more sense to just believe in God, than in all that horseshit.
Some people can do TeeVee, recently, AN Wilson has been one such; Waldemar Jabberwocky and Matthew Collings, in the arts, engage, inform and entertain without becoming the show, without getting in the way.
Jabberwocky, stomping around Rome in his sandals, burbling about sculpture and painting and building is of course a confection but one full of flavours, nuance, surprise and juicy tit-bit, easily digested and memorable. Jim, for his part, was glutinous showbiz porridge.
Jabberwocky, I believe, wants people to appreciate whoever or whatever it is he's burbling about, Rembrandt or Bach or Michaelangelo, wants people to know it for themselves; sure, he's on telly and has been for, what, twenty years to my knowledge but I trust his enthusiasm, his Godliness, the way I trust Moser's
Let me entertain you.
.Jim, on ther other hand, doesn't want to share anything, wants but to impress, to show-off, to star; wants to be the priest who, claiming to lead us to the light, keeps us in the dark.
Quantum physics, as far as our individual consciousnesses may perceive, is the sound of one hand clapping.