Saturday, December 25, 2010

The Pretty Thing

Author: jamico

"The exercise of an extraordinary gift is the supremest pleasure in life." - Mark Twain

"Empathy is full presence to what's alive in the other person at this moment." - John Cunningham (there are too many John Cunninghams to be certain who this is)

"The argument has long been made that we humans are by nature compassionate and empathic despite the occasional streak of meanness, but torrents of bad news throughout history have contradicted that claim, and little sound science has backed it. But try this thought experiment. Imagine the number of opportunities people around the world today might have to commit an antisocial act, from rape or murder to simple rudeness and dishonesty. Make that number the bottom of a fraction. Now for the top value you put the number of such antisocial acts that will actually occur today." - Daniel Goleman

"The range of what we think and do is limited by what we fail to notice. And because we fail to notice that we fail to notice there is little we can do to change until we notice how failing to notice shapes our thoughts and deeds." - Daniel Goleman

Daniel Goleman (born March 7, 1946) is an author, psychologist, and science journalist. For twelve years, he wrote for The New York Times, specializing in psychology and brain sciences. He is the author of more than 10 books on psychology, education, science, and leadership.

Goleman authored the internationally best-selling book, Emotional Intelligence (1995, Bantam Books), that spent more than one-and-a-half years on the New York Times Best Seller list. Goleman developed the argument that non-cognitive skills can matter as much as I.Q.
I have to jump in right here because this idea is means that intelligence is broader than thinking and if emotional intelligence is or can be as important, it might turn out to be true that your dog or cat is at times "smarter" than you are. There is no question that our animals are emotional. Every pet owner is likely able to verify this animal intelligence anecdotally.

The Pretty Thing

What is that I smell
better than jasmine? It comes
from that pretty thing
all snug in the moss
north of the tallest cedar
in the old growth stand.
I found it, followed
my nose and the stirring blood
within me, growing

Take it, you said.
Steal it. You know how. I did.
I'm caught like a fish.

September 28, 2009 10:43 AM


  1. sometimes, the hook is as surprising and delightful as what leads one to it....
    this piece really connects to (perhaps, conveys?) the emotional and expressive intelligence that calls with a voice as sure as the one that beckons to all those other forms of intelligence.

    btw, my season is quiet as well, with a visit to my son as a lovely gift that i am looking forward to...
    be well!

  2. That's what all the fish say, m'dear.


    Fishermen call those things lures.

    This suggests that Maya may have layers and levels of pleasure laid down on the fundamental situation. The lure may work as is for a really long time before the barb of the hook is revealed planted in the tender spot. At least that was the Buddha's point, why pleasure is as disappointing as it can sometimes be. It is also why it might lead to life after life, however long it takes to strip the deception away.

    But then, what the hell does HE know??

  3. I really like that little excercise Goleman suggests.
    Sometimes people ask me about you :) What if he is just a fraud? I will say, not likely, I can base this on the intelligent things you write, but mostly on the fact that all of us (animals included) just want to feel good ( maybe like; "by nature compassionate". So even if... underneath we all have the best intentions. And i think all of us realize over and over again (that mean streak maybe)that bad intentions don't lead to happiness.

    About getting hooked; i am such a fish.

  4. That's intriguing. I am not sure, what would I be a fraud for?? I am a poet and I have a poet's way. The line of real is drawn differently for me when I indulge myself in the creative stream. I take some of that quite seriously but as well I toy with things, but I toy in front of people not with the people. Fraud? What do I gain?

    I am not taking offense and I am seeing of course the whole process while anyone else looking is glimpsing only corners. If by fraud someone means I ought to be living in some kind of mansion or some other majestic relationship to the planet or else the things I write are a fraud, well then I certainly am.

    I woke up today an unemployed overweight and close to diabetic old fart who sleeps on his couch to elevate his legs in a messy house with no one but me here. I'm afraid I actually pick my nose and what is funny, I check to make sure no one is looking even though there is no one here. I am trying to refinance the house but am confused by the lack of response on the other end of the phone and mail, hoping it is just because it is Christmas. I claim my reality here often in the comments especially. I write about my job and the people there sometimes. I wrote about running my cat over and write about my health issues, heart and skeletal and all.

    These don't really play in Peoria though. I want an entertainment here as well as the other things my blog is so I put personal stuff out of the way a lot. Lately I am letting other people speak through the blog too.

    So if I am a fraud, then other writers are all frauds, and actors and other performers too. That's what it seems like to me.

    I think I know who you mean though, Jozien. I guess I know how that is important, even comes up a little. Merry Christmas to you and yours. That's all I can do.

  5. I am smiling ear to ear. That is all. Ear to ear. Oh, and I kid you not, I was picking my nose when I was reading you. Sorry. I just do. And I don't even bother to look around.

    Oh, and the that is all was a bit of a lie. I've got a bunch on that one. A bunch. It seems to me that if you think about, and god forbid, voice anything of value (real value, and believe me, I think about this a great deal and don't even have a true answer and so I'm not quite sure what I am writing about - ha!) it seems that it is often wrongly perceived as affected. Not just you, but you, me, and anyone who cares enough to question this, this grand and gorgeous thing of life. Oh, and death too. I like to think about death too. Doesn't it make this gorgeous thing of life more poignant? Apparently we should be out looking good or at least not picking our noses. Oh, and probably buying something, mostly so that we might look better.

    OK, back to smiling ear to ear. Done picking nose.

    Love your poem, barb and all.


  6. And you lost your job? Oh, Christopher, this just happened? I am so sorry that it is becoming more difficult for you at this time. I hope great light finds its way to you and your phone rings with some sort of solution.

    much love

  7. I love you, good friend Erin. If it itches or otherwise gets noticed you scratch or otherwise deal with it, I think. Heh.

    Yes, especially if you are looking where most people do not, if they look at you looking, they will see you from the rear, and the most prominent part of the view is your backside...thus you will look like an ass!

    I have not lost my job. I am still packed into my troll's house at work, still have the key to the place. This is all usual but difficult and costly none the less. I am guaranteed a return, just not when.

    This is not the only year I have lost my work at year's end when the money runs out for them. There is plenty of busy work, just no way to fund it.

  8. Is it terribly small of me to be relieved that you have not lost your job? I don't really care if it is small of me or not though. I am relieved.

    love you too, Christopher.


  9. Thank you for your concern, dear friend. I don't take these things all that easy. It is just that I like the time off, and I feel relieved to be off work as much as it worries me too. I would be retired right now if I could. But that as well is not because I hate my work because I actually like my work, just that I like the time off better except for the money I lose (but wish I didn't have to care about that) so the whole thing is complicated.


The chicken crossed the road. That's poultry in motion.

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