The Brassican Heresy

broccoli.jpgWarning: The following post is long, and may contains insults to French people. And Christians. And probably frogs.

(Also, it underwent a slight editing, with some additional material, on Feb. 11.)


I’d like to propose to you a daring hypothesis.

You may be surprised by it. You may be stunned. You might even be shocked. Because this is such a daring idea, some of you reading this right now may actually be horrified. There’s even the possibility – distant, but real, so I have to warn you – that one or more people about to read the following hypothesis will suffer deep psychological damage and end up under permanent psychiatric care, or possibly even comatose.

I don’t really want to just spring it on you suddenly. This is something so new, so different, so deeply significant, that I feel very strongly that it should have its own screen. It’s just not something I feel okay with plopping down in a sea of insignificant words, as if it were one common grain of sand on a vast beach.

This is something so special it demands treatment you’d immediately consider … unusual.

So. If you think you’re ready for it, brace yourself and look below the break. Here it comes:

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The Wisdom of the Beavers

beaver.jpgSaw this little magazine in the foyer of a local coffee shop a few days back. The main title, “Wisdom,” was stated in large letters, then below, smaller, was a subtitle “of the beavers, earth, body, mind & soul.”

So I picked it up. How can you go wrong with a magazine titled “Wisdom of the beavers”? The wisdom of Earth’s natural architects, able to build dams and cozy lodges out of trees? Especially if the beavers were finally weighing in on “earth, body, mind & soul.” Whoa, count me in!

Oh, man, can’t tell you how disappointed I was. I finally looked at the cover again and realized that in the scripty font they were using, the word that looked like “beavers” was actually “heavens.”

So it was really “Wisdom of the heavens, earth, body, mind & soul.” It was all this new-agey stuff. Nothing at all about beavers.


For instance, here’s an ad from the inner pages:

[Picture of woman with big hair and giant earrings] Hello, My name is Layla. I am a very experienced channeling psychic. I have several abilities and talents that range from one spectrum to another. For example, I am clairvoyant, clairaudient, clairsentient, a channeler, a mind reader, past, present, future time frames, an astrologist, a member of the American Tarot Association and a certified professional tarot reader. I can also do seances, automatic writing, prophetic revelations, psychometry, dream interpretation and handwriting analysis. I would love to have the opportunity to speak with you. Give me a call, thanks.

See? No mention of beavers. I mean, sure, the woman’s practically a Swiss Army Knife of psychic abilities, but could she gather materials for a dam using only her teeth?

And then: [Mystical mandala thingie superimposed over largish woman with sunglasses] “Cheri Evans – Spiritual Counselor, Master Teacher, Intuitive Healer – Doing Spiritual Readings for over 25 years.”

“Through many transitions and initiations, Cheri has come to find her path. As her journey has now come full circle her truths become available to those who search for answers. – Spiritual and Life Readings – Past Life Readings – Conscious Channeling – Cheri’s work is to bring forth information that sheds light on your path and connects you with your life’s purpose.”

Well, that all sounds noble enough. But what use will it all be when the floodwaters rocket down the canyon towards your house? 

I guess I don’t get this New Age stuff.

Hwd Video Sux — but that’s just my subjective opinion.

I was in one of those video stores tonight to return a movie. I rented “Cars” a few days back. I was in the mood for an animated story, and Cars fit the mood.

Took it home to play it, got about 20 minutes or so into the movie and the scene froze. Nothing I could do would make it work. It did have a scratch on the shiny side, but it didn’t look that bad. But apparently that one scratch was enough to bollix up the laser thingie. I went “eh” and figured I’d return it and get a refund.

Turns out Hwd Video, according to the well-trained corporate-ette in the store, will give you only this very special “refund” — they’ll give you a credit which is good ONLY for that specific movie. In other words, they’d give me another copy of Cars.

She explained it to me: “Because otherwise, you could get to watch another movie for free.” Left me gaping. Huh?

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Dumb as a Post

yoko.jpgAn old cowboy friend used to tell me stories of the time he was hired to teach mule packing to the U.S. Army.

Mule packing” is when you load supplies onto a mule, using ropes, tarps and rigid boxes or special canvas bags, to carry them into roadless wilderness areas. Yeah, it sounds weird that the Army would want soldiers to know such things, but if they’re called upon to conduct quiet operations in remote mountainous or wilderness areas, it might be the only way to take food or weapons along in amounts larger than individual soldiers can carry.

Like a lot of things that sound simple but aren’t, there’s an actual technology to mule packing — keeping the load balanced, limiting the total weight, tying the proper hitches and knots, and even quite a bit of mule psychology. 


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Day 6 – TMH: Gym People

thundra.jpgHaving been out of the gym for a while, I’d forgotten about these people:

The Coveters: Those people who seem to want to control whatever piece of equipment they’re working at, even if they’re not on it at the moment. Like slow golfers who don’t want anyone else to play through.

The Campers: Those who do a set and then sit on the equipment to rest, preventing others from using it, but who never notice people waiting. (One guy today had a THERMOS with him. He sat on one of the machines and poured himself a cup of coffee.)

The Cocooners: The people who wear earplugs and carry music boxes with them everywhere, so that if you wanted to share a moment of camaraderie in the gym, a funny comment or a word of encouragement, they can’t hear you.

The Compulsive Wipers: The people who insist on thoroughly wiping down each piece of equipment before and after they use it, generally making you feel guilty because you’re not doing the same, and thus potentially infecting them with all your horrible diseases.

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