Public Journal:

The point of this string is to be the Ritz Cracker of strings. In other words: what do you write 500 to a 1000 words about when you don’t know what specifically to write about? For myself, it’s where I turn when my studies aren’t producing as much as I would like them to.

I know it sounds strange. But I have committed myself, as someone who considers themselves more of a writer than a philosopher, to doing such. It’s my meditation and Einstein’s wardrobe. It will serve as a catchall for those moments in my life when I absolutely cannot seem to consolidate the things I want to write about into a consistent 500 to 1000 word whole. It will serve as my fallback.

Just know that it is because, regardless, I have to keep writing –even when I may not want to. As Patricia Hempl said (concerning writers):

Just keep talking. Mumbling is fine.
Philosophy, to me, seems to be interplay between the creative and the critical.

Philosophy, as an armchair discipline, lets its mind wonder, then tests the concepts formed against reality. This was the main point I was trying to make when responding to FJ:

The point was to emphasize the difference between philosophy and science that FJ’s post suggested. My take on it is that the reason philosophical concepts tend to outlive bad (or less than great) scientific concepts is that philosophical concepts tend to be rooted in us in an almost poetic way. It works from a more intuitive level.

My point concerning KTS was that, from my perspective, the issues they are pimping are, as far as I’m concerned, the dark side of the very method I am using. In a sense, you have to give credit to the more analytic in that the more continental approach tends to be a little more susceptible to confirmation bias. The reason KTS gets away with what they do is because, much like some of my Right-wing friends, they can focus on certain aspects of reality. That, with radicalism of it, allows for a kind of Cassandra Complex in which their beliefs are confirmed by the general rejection of them.

At the same time, is the scientific method really that immune to “confirmation bias”?
When I first started my present job, one of my trainers told me that the key to being a good maintenance man is learning how to fix your mistakes.

?:doesn’t this string give just such an opportunity on this board.
One of the primary characteristics of a shitty day is being at that point where you’re struggling to get to a place where you know you can finally relax but find yourself faced with obstacles every step of the way to it. It gets even worse when you get there only to find being there presents more problems: such as when I got to my bar and found out I couldn’t get online.

I have had just such a day. But then it did inspire me to do this. And I think this will solve some problems for me.
This is my fallback, friends.

Feel free to use it as yours as well.
It’s been said that even the act of making a sandwich implies a question of whether life is worth going on with:

we work from the mundane to the philosophical.

Stuart and D63: this is why the metaphor as sometimes borne out of exasperation, where in order to arrive at meaning, aphorisms are developed out of allusions to an alignment of the literal and figurative, seemingly gaining that meaning from both kinds of sources. One doesn’t exclude the other, rather, both trying to gain strength from each other.

Interesting d63, and obe; I don’t see the connection, that is two people unilingal of different languages speaking out loud next to each other, even if both on the most compelling truths.

That is, the unconnected often flow toghether.

Or; I understand each of you but not toghether or to be half way there is a whole lot farther than nothing.

That is, take what you can get.

First of all: always nice having you guys (Obe and Stuart) joining in the party. I always appreciate your comments –even if I don’t always understand Obe’s. But even when I don’t, it always feels like they’re worthy of trying to understand. Anyway:

I think I get what you’re getting at here, Obe, concerning aphorisms. But before I get to that, I pick up a lot from your pointing to the “alignment of the literal and figurative”. This seems to me to underlie the continental approach in that it focuses as much on style of expression as what it is expressing. This was actually brought up in a Philosophy Now article I read today, Yahia Lababidi’s “The Twin Souls of Oscar Wilde and Fredrich Nietzsche”. Lababida put a lot of emphasis on how Nietzsche put a lot of emphasis on making his writing poetical –sometimes at the expense of his philosophical system.

Furthermore, I would humbly offer up a point I have made many times before: that the biggest weakness in the continental approach lays in its detractors, rather than its practitioners, in that they tend to base their arguments against it on taking it too literally. They simply cannot get taking a more figurative approach to what a philosopher might say. And this may be, Obe (as you suggest), they cannot grasp the benefit of doing so.

Now as far aphorisms, I would say it is the medium I see myself mainly working in. And as far why, I would offer up a piece I previously wrote:

I get exactly what you mean, Stuart. There are a lot of times I’m not sure of what Obe is saying. And there may well be times he is not sure of what I am saying. But he always shows up –much like you- and that alone gives me reason to believe he is worthy of jamming with until we find a common rhythm and meaning.

That is not to mention that, (like you, once again) even when Obe is critical of me, they’re not an asshole about it.

But I get what you’re saying about talking past each other. I and Obe even had a discourse about that. That led to Obe’s suggestion of a mutual Hebrophrenic discourse (am I spelling that wrong?).

However, I would argue that one the more important functions of The Board (The Jam) is to allow us to talk past one another until enough of the other catches in our personal filter to give us a common understanding.

Another thing I would point out, Stuart, is that my recent studies have been based on philosophical journals such as Philosophy Now and The Harvard Review of Philosophy. And because of that (the articles based on the nature of it), my leading posts have kind of jumped all over the place. Wherever I have been, lately, it hasn’t been about one initial question. And because of Obe’s willingness to follow me through this, I can only give up love and respect.

I only hope you, Stuart, will take the time out to go with me as well. Philosophy is a lot like rock music and art in that, if you are going to do it, you have to get some sense of what its most recent practitioners are doing with it.

‘Doesn’t matter if you’re reading the same thing I am. Just jam with it, brother. Find out what you have to say about it based on what I say about it.

Hope to see you here again.
Anyway, my next study will be based on Raymond Tallis’ In Defense of Wonder , that is granted the book actually makes it to my house this time.

Should you have the resources to get it as well, please join me.

Anyway, just got the Tallis book.

Should you have access to it as well…


What I have read(

while fricked out of my mind

(has been impressive.

or maybe it’s just the music.






Oil and water don’t mix, but make a good salad dressing (that is when I liked salad dressing).


In a discussion on aphorisms, it is best to use aphorisms.

As for jumping in, I hardly had the focus for specifics lately, but I’ll consider it. Nihilism, anti-morality morality, why my damn past haunts me, getting rid of it; emotionally and physically by throwing out all my old shit, my new job as a janitor, cleaning shit… I hardly need to explain that metaphor. But, I’ll stop by and hopefully I’ll even wipe my feet first, and I’ll try to make my pithy maxims used with the help of the dictionary glued to my hand (don’t worry, there’s nothing that a toillette can get on it that it doesn’t already have inside) be of relevance.

I know it’s hard to find people to discuss books with here and I know you don’t like the stict as hell, but it’s (in part thanks to my pioneering work with the early Heidegger reading group) the philosophical reading group center of the internet. So if you ever wish to put on a suit and tie and try it and start a reading group thread there I’ll be happy to help you jump start it (red to black, black to red?) Who knows, maybe I will be interested, I’ll look the book up and see.

Its not that I don’t like philosophyforums. In fact, I kind of like the board’s emphasis on composition.That seems to me an interesting and effective way to keep the discourse civil.

My primary discomfort with it lays in my tendency to flake out as I often do here. It’s the vertigo of the possible of not knowing how I’ll behave at the end of a drinking session that underlies my reluctance to go on the board.

I hate it when I flake out here. You can only imagine the anxiety I would feel about doing so on a more restrictive board.

I have my own problems with that. I started a Sartre thread and while slow, I of all people couldn’t even do my own part to keep it going. I really do miss having the motivation to read and discuss dense philosophical works, maybe in 6 months to year such motivation will come back.

Stuart: I hope Your job is not too hard on You, I could, too write a book about all the jobs I ever had, but I always kept the fact n mind, that as long as I can think about my situation, and situations in general which I can relate to, I needn’t come to any derivative conclusions as to notions such as for example: how unfair life is, or why me? The jobs that I did have (there were about 40 of them) I always had the impression that I did them well, and held myself in esteem, for being productive.

 I do hope you don't find this digression un compelling, as far as being an incursion into non philosophical areas.  

 I, D63, had it not been for my being to literally apply the phenominalogical reduction to the raw meat of my life, I probably would have been unable to hold  a grip unto my life.

I know exactly what you mean, Stuart. I’m still grinding away at. But I do get burnt out. I’ve been experiencing that a lot lately. And even as I do this, I still face such large books (for instance Delueze’s Difference and Repitition at 300+ pages) that will require me to read through them the first time without the slightest idea of what’s being said. I’ve had some of them for some time now and still manage to find some other book to keep me from having to attempt them.

Philosophy can be hard work.

That’s just it, isn’t it, Obe? You make a lot of compromises for this as far as creature comforts go. But you keep on doing it. I have a reasonably good job. But there are still a lot of important but mundane I should be attending to but can’t because I have to put as much energy into this as I can.It’s the source of a lot of discomfort.

And while I often wonder if it’s worth it, I’ll probably continue living like this to my death bed.Having hit my 50’s, it’s a little hard to stop now as I have, since my teens, been either engaged or completely immersed in culture and the creative act.

And as burnt out as I get, and despite my lack of success or recognition, one thing I have never questioned is if something like this can justify a life. It certainly sucks sometimes. But you can never think of it as a waste.

 I totally agree. It seems like a dead end sometimes, but we have got to keep it going. I am personally in a situation, rather, have been, for ever since I can remember reminiscent of Sartre's No Exist.  Incidentally, it was that play, in addition to the novel Nausea,which finally made up my mind to become an existentialist.  It is through the saving grace of Sartre, that I am probably still alive.  That's what I love about philosophy, it became essential to me, and it so remains.

 This is why I can feel like shit monday, and save my dough and fly to europe in the summer, which I plan to.

 This is why I could at once barely tolerate certain situations, while at the same time relishing the thought of being immersed in it.  And that is why I can write in Hebrephrenic expressions, while knowing it may not sound so as a free form of expression in the new writing.

I used to be very lonely, especially when it came to philosophy. I would have liked to talk to more people about it, but I wasn’t very familiar with the internet and so forth. To take comfort in my isolation I assumed that isolation led to originality. I would imagine myself, writing a thousand page ‘masterpeice’ throughout my life (a life that may or may not have been social, but definetly not in terms of philosophy/art/intellectual conversations).

So there I’d be with my book, and let’s assume it is actually one that many would appreciate, and I knew I was about to die. A gene came and asked me if I wanted him to put the book in the hands of a good publisher or burn it and give me a week long vacation in the tropics before I died. The latter! Such an obvious choice.

It’s very easy and only three days a week. In other words; a nightmare. What fun it was when I used to be a manager working 60 hours a week. Damn it that was years ago. I’m grown restless enough to vollunteer 10 hours a week, but a new career, if even feasable would only be run under again from my… well you put it better last February:

First of all, thanks again guys for showing up.

And Stuart…. You Abstract? Or are you just quoting him. Anyway:

And, Obe, isn’t that the reason to be for a lot of Sartre’s earlier writings –primarily Le Etre le Neant . We have to put in mind here that Sartre wrote a lot of it while he was a prisoner of war as a resistance fighter and knew that anyone, at anytime, could be tortured in order to get information. He had to think in terms of pure free will and later admitted that as an underlying justification for his thought.

But it saved you. And from a pragmatic perspective: that’s all that matters.

However, I would offer an alternative perspective on Sartre’s perspective. I have, throughout my life, gone through a lot shit phases. And throughout it all, I have spent a lot of time trying to figure out how to fix them and prevent them from happening again. And the only real answer I have found came from a documentary on people stranded in snowstorms. At the end of it, they pointed out research that defined an MO for those that tend to survive such situations: they’re generally people who accept that it doesn’t really matter whose fault it is that they’re in the situation; they don’t expend energy on assigning blame; they simply recognize that it is their problem and that if they just keep trudging on, it will pass one way or the other.

And you’re right: I really do need to get back to Nausea and No Exit.

Tonight, at the bar, Stuart, I was on the patio of the bar having a cigarette with 2 other guys. One was talking about people’s gambling addictions. I decided to be publically philosophical (something I don’t normally do) by pointing out that there is an underlying psychological aspect to all such self destructive behaviors. I started with the example of a woman who stays in an abusive relationship. I argued that if something is tearing down your self esteem, then there would be only thing that would build it up more than anything: the very thing that tore it down in the first place. This is why abusive men tend to give their victims moments of affection. And the same goes for gambling addictions. The gambling addict doesn’t care if they come out ahead in the long run. All they care about is the “good run”. And the same can be said of the drug addict. What they are always trying to get back to is that feeling of being on top of the world. And, unfortunately, the same principle seems to be at work with people like us. Through our efforts, we achieve that feeling of being on top of world. But when we reach those phases where we seem to have lost our Mojo, we keep on keeping on in hopes of getting it back. This has killed many great minds and artists.

Unfortunately, this was lost on the person I was explaining it to. He focused on the abused woman and distinguished the 2 by pointing out that a gambling addiction was one thing, but if someone abused a woman, he would kick their ass. Hard to disagree with that.

But I think the incident properly illustrates the isolation we feel as the intellectually curious. It’s why I don’t talk a lot about what I have learned with normal people.

While having a cigarette on that patio, I was looking at the Bag and Save and the landscape in general and wondering if Van Gogh’s style of painting could capture it. The architecture of the Bag And Save just seemed too straight-lined for Van Gogh’s more organic style. It just seemed to me that someone like Steeler would be far more equipped to capture it.

I found what you said on gambling/art very interesting. I was addicted to art and I guess I was in denial. Now I’m fully aware of my addiction, though it’s more of a disposition. As I’ve been telling obe and others I would trash ti if I could, but only medicine can relieve such symptoms only to be a replaced addiction with it’s own set of side effects. So I’m one does art and philosophy against my will. The highs come occasionally and the lows are the norm. keep in mind what I was saying about the 1000 page book was an idea I ‘suffered’ from many years ago, I don’t see myself going anywhere with this philosophy and even if vague goals do come up they are against my will. So burning my work for a couple pennies rather than a vactaion is hardly an exageration. I hope I’m not being too graphic but what you see with me here is someone who perpetually vomits, not that you all are enablers, if it wasn’t for forums such as this it would be as if my mouth was closed shut, damnit I’ve been averaging 15 posts a day for the last two months. My words had been repressed for lack of much company from about eight years ago to three years ago, such a back log.

But, I’m getting off topic, I like to watch nfl/nba, I don’t even try to deny myself it anymore, because I heard another good psychological insight a couple years ago. Guys are used to pack hunting, being stuck getting our food at the store, some kind of pitiful replacement such as sports on TV is better than nothing, but I don’t want to really talk sports it’s always very contrived.

It’s interesting what the guy said about beating up abusers. Such ‘moral’ sentiments are common; ‘if I saw a hungry child I would feed him’; right… hungry children are everywhere, people just don’t look. If the guy wants to beat up abusers (as if that would accomplish anything in the long run) then they’re not hard to find.


my friend !!!

?: you abstract…