Archive for February, 2006

A Proposal of Circumstances most Extraordinary

An interesting plot development has recently come to pass; as the circle readery is well aware, my responsive letter to the two outspoken conservatives (mentioned in the 2/17 blog entry) was published today. This has led to something unforeseen.

I want my loyal readers to know that for the majority of my life, I have found myself in disagreement with a multitude of others. To those with whom I harbor such disagreement, I have always endeavored to be civil, but never their friend. Apparently this strategy is not shared by all, but let me offer you a little narrative that can better justify my approach:

In Iraq, I was assigned to work alongside another Corporal that nobody else could get along with. The level of incompatibility he shared with the entire chain seemed insurmountable. However, he and I managed to function as a team and complete the tasks that had been assigned to us. As time went by, we developed something of a working-friendship. But, on the last day we worked together, we admitted the initial disdain we had for one another was still there and still today, we agreed the likelihood of us sharing a beer or a coffee or anything at all in the future, should we ever cross paths, is cipher. Shook hands and parted company, he is not missed, and I don’t imagine I am either.

The moral of the story is that you selected a course; stay the course. You may have gone astray a time or two, but redirect your azimuth, don’t assume you can plop down back on proper bearings just because you detected your miscalculation. You need to recover the ground that was lost; enjoy the journey.

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My Thanks goes out…

Today, my thanks goes out to Tiffany and Rebecca; you both did a superb job. Thank you for your invaluable help and dedication; Gardner would have been proud.

Joe Connell and I led an interesting discussion on creative writing yesterday in the Commuter Lounge. We had some fantastic input from a handful of the school’s innovative minds. My thanks to Jenn for her perspective on Thoreau; she helped me come to the realization that reading Thoreau may only be beneficial to readers who are aptly prepared to comprehend him. I think we can all benefit from a little more Thoreau, I just don’t know if we’re ready for it. Another significant evolution in our talks involved the issue of following grammatical rules to the “t”, vice breaking free of English diction decorum’s shackles to express yourself freely. We arrived at the conclusion that neither is the best avenue of expressing yourself through writing; striking an appropriate balance between the two is optimal. The point that I really hope I imparted unto the group is to always read and to always write. The human mind is such a beautiful thing and language such a formidable means of sharing that beauty.

And lastly, my thanks goes out to the numerous people who read the Circle and provide me with constructive feedback, be it positive or negative, through the medium of letters to the editor, Email, Facebook messages, and my favorite: face to face discussion. Our collective consideration of the world can only lead to a better reasoned approach to properly living within it.

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First response… (long overdue)

A new edition of the “Circle” surfaced today, as often happens on Thursdays, and included another liberal column of mine, but this is not news. What is news, exciting news even, is two letters to the editor that refer to my last column, “Defense Redefined, President’s Efforts at Literary Distortion Achieved”. I began my rebuttal only hours after reading these letters; it will likely be published in next week’s “Circle”, so I will spare the details. I will say however that my military service, which I have never made mention of in previous articles, will most definitely be included in the rebuttal. The hour is most certainly at hand. Just when I’d thought the level of political apathy at Marist College was strong enough to knock down a bull elephant, opportunity comes knocking-no, banging down the door- for political debate. The immature tones of their letters notwithstanding, I am optimistic that some very significant dialogue can come of these “first shots of returned fire” from the right.

To those who believe my pursuit is futile, that republican propaganda’s influence is insurmountable I would like to offer a bit of baseball symbolism:

“This ballgame’s innings are potentially limitless; it will continue so long as we are willing to repeatedly take the field, no matter how far we fall behind. They are powerless to win unless we allow ourselves to lose”

You might think me naive, but I hold on to hope that through the collective efforts of enough diligent minds and clean hearts, concerned citizens can impart social change and conceivably reestablish a culture’s right prudence and efficacy, no matter how decrepit that culture has become. The letters that responded to my liberal column this week testify to this belief, perhaps in an abstract, backwards fashion, but they testify nonetheless. Conservatives are often pigeon-holed as narrow-minded, politically disconnected or misguided, or just plain too lazy to develop an informed opinion and speak up. In defiance of this stereotype, two conservatives have read an overtly liberal opinion column, reflected upon it, and wrote well-researched letters in refute, and I praise them for it. I can tolerate the vulgar and insulting tone as well as the fact that they are poorly reasoned and groundless because at least they reveal effort on the part of their writers to think critically. An infant’s first steps are always crude, unsteady, unrefined, and amusingly silly looking, but aren’t they universally required if one hopes to ever run a marathon? I hope, however, that the steps that follow eventually progress into something more mature and respectable; I would consider it a shame to see, again, one of my old proverbs legitimized:

“The decision to withhold from us your words, kind sir, would be most prudent in your case, for so doing conceals from everyone your true identity as an imbecile. Bear in mind always, with tight lips, that their never parting company is your most assured defense against being properly labeled vilely ignorant.”

Be sure to get your hands on next week’s “Circle” if you find this sort of dialogue as delectable as I do. If you are anything like the two conservatives who have spoken out against me, I will share with you something I wrote last night before bedding down: “If it bothers you that I write these things, you should know that it bothers me even more that I am forced to write them.”

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Happy V-Day, Everybody

My first Valentines Day since the big divorce last July; I never imagined I would feel so… single. My Blogress will have to wait for another day. I had it in my mind to introduce the “abstraracters” of this blog, that is, the little intangible ideas that will come and go throughout the entries herein, presented as people, for I feel people are the basic unit of our clearest understanding. I digress; the casting will have to wait for the coming of a non-valentine’s day.
Right now I am sitting in Marist College’s Library, with about 5 minutes left on my shift at the circulation desk. I wish you could see me because I am clad in black, head to toe, my form of protest against this holiday. At midnight I posted an “away message” on my AIM profile that will stand all day and night until I remove it at, again, midnight. It has a lot of esoteric references, most would make no sense to the masses, but it ends with this poem I wrote last night: “Lonely but pure, myster’us but true – Unknown to the masses, forsaken by you – Brutally Beaten, but struggling still – Success I know not, but someday I will.” – again, a bit esoteric, but I think it gets my emotions across. To view the AIM away message in it’s entirety, check AOL instant messenger profile “myownwarden”.

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First Steps & Gratitude

“My first blog entry, ever. The excitement level is supremely high… “
– My words from the evening this blog was created. Much thanks to Evan Pritchard, my ex-professor who made this possible. The words that follow endeavor to convey to the world my relationship with the world and its creator, expressing ways in which we can improve the tranquility of the former thus growing closer to the latter. Through poetic beauty and creativity, this serves as a beacon of Views and Values salient to all walks of life that men and women from every faith can embrace. Scattered liberally throughout for self-flattery and comic relief are a few catchy lines of cracker-jack wisdom that I have conjured over the years; I hope you enjoy them.

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