HOOK, LINE AND SINKER…

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By Tom H. Brooks 3

No, this is NOT about fishing…

It`s STREET JOURNAL 70 !!!

THE ONLY WAY TO READ A BOOK IN AN EVENING AND STILL HAVE TIME TO WATCH YOUR FAVORITE SHOW ON TV…………………………………………………………………..
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AND SO IT BEGINS AGAIN…………………….………………………………………………………………….

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A STORY OF EPISODES…
…you`ll get nothing but the words;
hopefully, that should be more than enough….
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An early poem from October of 1999.  It is written in an underdeveloped style, as if I was still trying to find my voice.  However, as I sit here in Japan in July of 2013, I have to be amazed at how right I was.
If this isn`t prophetic, I don`t know what is.  However, THIS country isn`t exactly what I was picturing when I wrote this.  It just goes to show you, life, if nothing else, will ALWAYS be full of unexpected twists and turns of fate….
On the other hand, perhaps it was in my mind all along.  Maybe I set the course of my life on that day many years ago.  It doesn`t really matter anymore because here I am.
And I`ve got PLENTY of time to write.  It`s possible that this is the way it`s supposed to be…
Distant Horizons
 
Sometimes
in the light
of certain south
I see myself there
gone from this place
gone from anywhere
I`ve ever known
to a distant horizon
that cannot yet be named…
I see myself there
divorced from the familiar
the unknown awaiting me
like a virgin bride
greeting me with open arms
I see myself there
with the twilight upon me
triggering the birth of new worlds
a galaxy of light and shadow
I continue forward
with grim determination
into the vortex…
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***** International “School” (update)
This place is SO FUCKING STUPID!
It really is the low point of my checkered NON-career….it truly can`t get much worse than this…
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“Dying is hard, but living is harder still.”
Vincent Van Gogh
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“There is always a heavy demand for fresh mediocrity.  In every generation,
the least cultivated taste has the largest appetite.”
Paul Gauguin
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“I do not believe in the Art which is not the compulsive
result of man`s urge to open his heart.”
Edvard Munch
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“You cannot define electricity.  The same can be said of Art.
It is a kind of inner current in a human being, or something
which needs no definition.”
Marcel Duchamp
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“There is only one difference between a madman and me.
The madman thinks he is sane.  I KNOW I am mad.”
“KNOWING HOW TO LOOK IS A WAY OF INVENTING.”
Salvador Dali
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“In the future, everyone will be world famous for 15 minutes.”
Andy Warhol
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As you`d expect one to say, photography is about light, shadow, and composition.
It`s about the definitive moment and an often perfect sense of timing…of being there.
But there`s much more to it than that.  It`s also about the story behind the photograph,
the untold one—how one arrived at that particular time and place—how it all came to be.
When it is viewed this way, what a fascinating and limitless world it can be…
THB3
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“One of the strange things about marriage is that it makes
deception necessary for both parties.”
Eyes Wide Shut
 
“However vast the darkness, we must supply our own light.”
Stanley Kubrick
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“We are all shaped by our pasts,
and we carry elements of our pasts
into the future…”
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“An attempt at visualizing
the fourth dimension:
take a point,
stretch it into a line,
curl it into a circle,
twist it into a sphere,
and punch through the sphere…”
Albert Einstein
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I just saw a guy with a t-shirt that said, University of Nowhere……
HA!  I went there too!!
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“Some people die just a little,
some people DIE BY THE DROP…”
Dead Weather
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7/7/13
Hot as hell….
went to the `beach` on Tokyo Bay, `Kasairinkaikoen`…..
Floated around in the cool, filthy water….
Can`t be any worse than swimming or riding a jet ski in LA`s San Pedro harbor, which I`ve done…
(Burned the SHIT out of my pasty, white flesh….my back is itchy and peeling off in strips of tomato red…..worst burn since I was like 6 years old…..)
Later, Chiharu is taking care of this BRUTAL sunburn and I say, Thanks for taking care of my tomato-colored back….
She replies, “It`s not tomato, sweetheart, it`s like…..lasagna with meat….”
QUOTE OF THE WEEK!
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I`d rather dig trenches, work in a mortuary, a Chinese sweatshop, or even
work in a prison cafeteria than work at that fucking `international school`…..a goddamned nightmare, I tell ya….
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7/14/13
Went to Kamakura in Kanagawa Prefecture.  It`s an OLD town, much of it around 800 to 1000 years old (the temples and shrines, that is).  We went to Engaku-ji Temple THIS time (there WILL be future trips) and of course, the rest of the day was spent on the beach and swimming in the ocean……
SPECTACULAR!  (a real PARTY beach, I might add…)
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Joking, to Chiharu, I say, you made my towel stink!
and she replies, “Excuse YOU, bloody, stinky, meatball!” and then laughs….
She`s right….that`s what my back looks like with this sunburn…(there must be a HUGE hole in the ozone layer over Tokyo, because this is the worst burn I`ve EVER had….)
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“The people who are crazy enough to think they
can change the world are the ones who do…”
Steve Jobs
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BUTTERBEAN
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7/23/13
I never mentioned this one….
FLASHBACK TO JUNE, 2013
Midnight on a cool, misty evening and I`m lying in bed watching TV.  Chiharu is asleep.  Suddenly, I hear FURIOUS yelling in JAPANESE.  It starts inside across the alley.  I turn off the computer, the lights are darkened, and I look outside.  Right at that moment,  this angry little Jap bulldog comes BURSTING out the front door of the house across the alley….YELLING.  I can`t understand a fucking word he`s saying but it`s quite obvious that he`s VERY mad.  He starts kicking the garage door in a fit of fury.  Garage doors here are usually sliding metal shutters that pull down like the things on closed NYC storefronts at night.  ( I saw it the next day and it was all bent, broken and kicked in…)  At this point, of course Chiharu had woken up and was wondering what the hell was going on.  So here we are, peeping out the window at this bizarre midnight show and she`s translating quietly for me.  He`s cursing and screaming relentlessly.  Apparently, he`s the brother of the woman across the way and he is WASTED.  It`s not quite clear WHAT the argument is about, but nonetheless, he`s all steamed up about it.  The whole neighborhood must surely be awake now.  This goes on for an outrageous and spectacular show of at least 30 minutes.  Some teenage relatives seem to be trying to restrain him, but to no avail until the police FINALLY show up.  Someone could already be dead as far as their snail-like response time is concerned.  They show up with their flashlights and their thick horn-rimmed eyeglasses, looking like bowlegged little librarians.  This guy tells them he is Yakuza and he`s actually THREATENING them AND their families.  Now….you just DON`T DO THAT in America, unless you have a death wish and you want to leave in a body bag instead of cuffs.  If some scumbag pulled that kind of shit on an LAPD officer, the cops would pull out the taser guns and billyclubs and beat him brutally into drooling and bloody submission.  You threaten their FAMILIES and you`re just asking for them to plant a gun on you, take you to the nearest river and SHOOT YOU IN THE FACE!
The moral of the story?
The “police” here are totally fucking USELESS.  They didn`t even arrest him!  They actually apologized to him and left!  HA!!  PATHETIC.
And you KNOW I was laughing my ass off the whole time.  If I`d been one of those pigs, I would`ve carved some sushi off his back and thrown him back in the ocean where he belongs….
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Try this…
Go to Google images first, and
then type in    Staten Island Abandoned Mental Hospital    and check out the spooky photos.
Then check out Wikipedia about the Willowbrook Hospital in the Staten Island Greenbelt.
I found this place while on one of my epic skateboard rides around and across S.I. through
the Great Swamp.  There was a hole in the chain link fence and I couldn`t resist.  It was a HUGE complex of crumbling brick structures in the shade of the trees with tangled vines
creeping up the sides of the buildings, shattered windows, graffiti everywhere, and rusting beds and burned-out, forgotten furniture inside.
 I was to return and photograph the place like 6 times by myself before I ever brought anyone else there.  Fascinating and haunting.  If you read the history of the place, you will understand why it has somewhat of a bad vibe.  And yet, despite that, it was still somehow peaceful—to me anyway….
Here is some graffiti you can find on the wall in there—in dripping blood-red…..
I taste like the dreams of mad children
(what reminded me of this was a random movie I saw called Session 9 that was about the now shuttered and condemned Danvers Lunatic Asylum in Massachusetts.  It looked very much like the same kind of thing and it was quite a scary-looking place.  You know how I love ruins….)
Willowbrook Hospital was a facility for troubled and/or insane children.  At its peak, it housed 6000 mad children even though it was only equipped to handle 4000.  That`s A LOT of crazy.  There was also an orderly there named Andre Rand, who appears in the movie, `Cropsey`, who turned out to be a child murderer.  Spooky shit, I tell ya. 
See the fourth photo above…
See poem at end of this Street Journal called Lost Voices (The Asylum)
It`s about Willowbrook, and it was written AT the location, on the rooftop of a crumbling, abandoned and haunted building on a hot summer day…..alone…..
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side note to self…
Foxygen on La Blogotheque…….INTERESTING music….
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“Destruction leads to a very rough road
but it also breeds creation…”
Anthony Kiedis
The Red Hot Chili Peppers
Californication
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8/2/13
I haven`t been writing much lately, I know….
Tokyo summer—it`s just too damn HOT!!
`MILK WAS A BAD CHOICE!!`
My brain feels like a dried-up and blackened muffin, BURNING in the oven
of my skull.  That`s my excuse and I`m sticking to it.  I spend most of my
time either working at that nightmare job or searching
Tokyo near and far for cold water to plunge into….
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8/8/13
“Howard, by accident of birth, tasted the raw stuff of the cosmos.”
Paul Harding
Tinkers
(Thank you, Todd….)
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8/8/13
A LIFE WITHOUT INTROSPECTION
IS A LIFE WITHOUT LIVING….
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Let me break it off on the REAL for ya….
With the notable exception of Chiharu, in the 3 whole years I have lived in Japan, I have yet to meet ONE SINGLE PERSON with any REAL or exceptional personality.  I`m a total loner.
In America, I have a wealth of friends who are fascinating and eccentric, first-class characters….and NO—it`s NOT the language barrier.  It`s so obvious, it punches me in the face every day.  NO ONE here interests me—NOT AT ALL.  I`d rather talk to a room full of dead corpses.  To me (so far, anyway), most of these people are just a bunch of manga-reading, anime-watching, J-Pop-listening, automaton-working, pachinko-playing, scooter-riding, slipper-shuffling, rice-eating, BORING, DEADBEATS.  How this country ever produced anyone with the writing genius of Haruki Murakami or Basho, I`ll never know!  ROBOTS—one and all.  I`d rather talk to a stray cat or an inanimate object, such as a wall or a dog turd in the gutter…..
I KNOW THERE ARE SOME EXCEPTIONS HERE SOMEWHERE,
BUT I HAVE YET TO FIND THEM…
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BITTER?……nooooooooo, NEVER!
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SO funny, I forgot to laugh…..
(because I`m crying inside….)
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Saturday, 8/10/13, 5:45am
On the JR Sobu Line (Yokosuka Line) heading south to the ocean at Kamakura in Kanagawa Prefecture.  Chiharu is in the mountains of Nagano at her family home, so this time I`m alone…
that spectacular freedom feeling of adventure washes over me like ocean waves…
*    *    *
“He frequently observed that there was more to be endured than enjoyed, in the general condition of human life…”
Boswell
The Life of Johnson
*    *    *
…So you better REALLY ENJOY these rare, special moments….in other words, DAYS LIKE THIS…
First, swimming on the beach from 7:30 to 10:15am.
Later, I find myself at Kencho-ji Temple (dated around 1227 A.D.).  In retrospect, I think I liked the gardens better at Engaku-ji Temple last time I visited Kamakura.  However, this temple has simply AMAZING architecture.  They just don`t make buildings like this anymore…
Enno-ji Temple  (1250 A.D)
This temple honors the Ten Judges of Hell, with Enma Daio in the center, whom one will meet in the underworld after death.  Enma Daio refers to Yama from Rig Veda, the oldest Hindu Mythology.  (Inside, it said no photos, but it would be so unlike me to listen to this nonsense, so of course, I snapped a couple pics anyway on the down low…I managed to get shots of 3 out of 10 Judges, anyway, including the Main Man, Enma Daio…)
Went to The Great Buddha (Daibutsu) in Hase.  It was an AMAZING and HUGE piece of sculptural mastery…BUT….THIS is why I appreciate ruins and forgotten places—SILENCE!!
That place was like fucking Disneyland!
Getting around, I took this little local, antique train (Den-Toshin Line or Enoden, or something like that…).   It was spectacular, weaving slowly through the back alleys of this ancient town, through a tunnel in the green mountains, and then it came out the other side and ran parallel to the sparkling blue ocean…
Now I`m in a Lawson convenience store in Enoshima, where there`s tons of half-naked girls in tiny bikinis INSIDE the store.  Now in California, this is no big deal, but you just don`t see this everyday in Japan (EVER!!!).  As always, my life is a season in hell….
Speaking of hell, today is as humid as it can get, I tell you….
Finally, though, a cool breeze begins to blow down shaded city streets.  You can hear the forlorn cries of the falcons echo down, as they hover on the wind above the buildings.  As I stand here drinking a beer, I can see a nice view of the ocean just down the street and Enoshima (an island, now connected by a manmade road) floats out there like a mirage in the white sunlight, calling to me…..
Enoshima……DREAM ISLAND…..hallucinatory, mystical, UNBELIEVABLE….
I`ll let my photos speak for themselves on this….
Enoshima lanterns; paper lanterns with intricate drawings line the walkways and winding stairways that go up and down everywhere through the green mountains…
Enoshima could very well be one of the strangest magical places I`ve ever been….
Iwaya Sea Caves at the southwest facing side of the island, with shrines dating from 524 A.D…!
INCREDIBLE!  A very spiritual place.  Hard to capture photos in the dark, and flash photos ruin everything, but I managed to get a few beauties.
I saw EVERYTHING that I had made it a goal to see today and MORE….
I LOVE IT WHEN A WELL-CRAFTED MASTER PLAN COMES TOGETHER….
ENOSHIMA ISLAND (Deep Inside the Dream)
I can’t even get drunk on beer anymore.
I just get tired.
OLD MAN and THE MOUNTAIN
Strangely enough, there`s quite a large population of random cats on Enoshima….
The lanterns I mentioned earlier are all lit up and glowing in the cool, blue darkness now as I walk back across the island towards the mainland…
I saw a guy with a t-shirt that said,
“I SPEAK ENGRISH”
HA!  I`d like to think he was kidding, but around here, you just never know for sure….
A cool dip in the night water, another beer, and fireworks on the beach at night.  A perfect topper for a PERFECT DAY.  It was a spectacular and unique Tom Brooks adventure.  The lighthouse tower on top of the island revolves around and around in the darkness, changing colors.  The lanterns are lit up and winding all over the island on stairs and paths.  The water cleanses me and the fireworks light up the night.  I`m free and happy and alive.  What more could you ask for?
I`m going home…..sheer EXHAUSTION…….(I hope I can stay awake on the train or I`ll wake up in Chiba…..)
DELIRIUM IS THE DRUG
I made it home…….and …………….GOOD NIGHT……
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ENOSHIMA
Emerald Dream
Mystical Island
where time stands still
You rise dramatically out of the sea
like a mirage in the summer mist

Your lush green hills
and your rocky crags
tumble into the deep blue ocean
which washes over your stone feet
like a cool summer dream

Stairways and winding paths
meander through your tangled hair
Ancient temples and shrines
appear in the warm shadows of trees
while cicadas sing their humid song

The sun sinks into the endless sea
Paper lanterns glow on dim walkways
and the night melts over you—
a colorful hallucination, a hole in space and time
You are lost in the eternity of a moment…

Written in Tokyo two days after my first visit to this amazing place
at 12 noon on 8/12/13
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It`s funny—whenever I write a poem, a story, a parable….ANYTHING really, it ALWAYS begins with a good title.  That just seems to be my M.O.  A good title strikes me in the middle of the night, or by the ocean, or on the subway, or walking down the street hearing the call of a raven….and then it happens;
everything else that I write follows from there….
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“If that`s true…
if you `don`t know who I am,`
then maybe your best course is….TO TREAD LIGHTLY.”
“Walter White”  (AKA  “HEISENBERG”)
Breaking Bad  [Final season 5, episode 9]
The BEST show EVER created…
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WHERE YOU STOP,
I BEGIN…
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Life is a precious thing;
It should be ENJOYED, not endured…
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It may be August 17th here in Japan, but in America it is AUGUST 16th, Charles Bukowski`s birthday.  He may be drinking in some seedy bar on the other side of morning now, but nonetheless, I will raise a few beers in his honor today…
“WE ARE HERE TO DRINK BEER,
WE ARE HERE TO KILL WAR,
WE ARE HERE TO LIVE LIFE SO WELL
THAT DEATH WILL TREMBLE TO TAKE US.
I AM MY OWN GOD.”
Charles Bukowski
Adventure time….
8/17/13
I`m going to Enoshima….again….
“…spiked heels make a hole in a lifeboat…”
Jack White  Sixteen Saltines
7:20am  arrived in Enoshima by train rolling alongside the blue sea.  Beer first, exploration later.
Ahhh yes—and let`s not forget a morning swim in my beloved Pacific Ocean
BEAUTIFUL
The biggest problem with Enoshima Beach is that they have these loudspeakers blaring out and playing this unbearably BAD, shitty J-pop `music`…..ALL FUCKING DAY!  Therefore, the key is to get there early BEFORE the music….when the music started, I endured 40 minutes before I left and found a new quieter spot….
Right after I wrote the above entry, I went into the water and then heard the unmistakable groove and flow of Karl Denson saxophone stylings, of all things (!!).  It was Greyboy and the Allstars from the old San Diego days, playing their unique brand of funky acid jazz.  How did that find its way over here?!?  UNBELIEVABLE!  But after that, they went back to J-pop…..so I left….
I saw a t-shirt on a sexy girlie that said,
“MAKE TO WONDER”
(MORE Japanese bad English, but somehow…I still liked it…..)
So…Enoshima has 2 sections of main beach that form a kind of half-moon bay….
the side where I started my day (and will probably finish it), and the far side of the half moon.
They were both PACKED by 10:30am….BUT…in the middle-I mean dead center-it was all but empty.  Of course, THAT`S where I went when I wanted meditative silence (and no more J-pop!)
About 11 to 11:30am…somewhere in here….
I`m going walkabout.  From here, I`ll probably let my photos tell the story, unless something unusual happens….
I told you before and I`ll tell you again….I don`t need no stinkin` guidebooks.  I just let my feet do the walking and I follow.  My instinct always leads me where I need to go…
An excellent and VERY quiet temple on a mountainside above the sea….AWAY from the crowds for awhile…
Went to a place called “Diego By The River.”  It was because of the name and they had a picture of something resembling tacos out front, like a lunch special or something like that.  Well, it wasn`t really Mexican food at all—just a big hunk of spicy grilled chicken with Japanese rice, and store-bought tortillas and salsa.  There were avocados and cheese, though….
In any case, I sat at a nice table overlooking the river in a cool breeze, so it wasn`t bad at all…
BIKINI
There`s only a THIN layer of silky cloth between her and ME….
heh, heh…..
I saw full-on Pakistani Muslims on Enoshima beach; big-bearded dudes, women all with masks and head wraps, covered up from head to toe,  going in the water, getting all sandy and soggy and heavy…..
ISLAM SEEMS VERY INCONVENIENT…
(no offense to my Muslim friends…I`m just PLAYING people!!)
Just TAKE OFF YOUR CLOTHES, BITCHES!!!
CALIFORNICATION!!
The Japanese are starting to get it….why don`t you?!?
We were all born naked and we`re all gonna die naked….what`s the fucking secret?!?
The mortician is gonna see your body when you`re on the death slab.  No big deal….
I know what`s under there, EVERYONE does!!
5:30pm….tried to go AROUND the island on the rocks.  It was an unsuccessful mission, though,
due to high tides.  However….it was SPECTACULAR……
I saw Fuji Mountain at sunset in the summer!!—a RARE sight, indeed, with all the haze.
I think it was meant just for me………(because I appreciate it….)
They have this famous snack that EVERYONE was eating in Enoshima; it smelled like shrimp or fish and it was HUGE and THIN, like a piece of seafood PAPER with designs on it…
fascinating……but….I didn`t get one….
It`s about 8:10pm and I`m leaving.  That may seem early, but with all the train transfers (3), I won`t be home until 9:45 or 10pm (hope I don`t sleep on the train and wake up in Chiba….!!).  What a great fucking day…….EPIC!!
My photo and writing projects NEVER end…..
IT`S EXHAUSTING BEING ME…..I WOULDN`T HAVE IT ANY OTHER WAY….
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I am anxiously awaiting Haruki Murakami`s latest book, Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage to be translated into English.  It is rumored to be coming out in 2014 and will be translated by the amazing Jay Rubin and Phillip Gabriel.  I`m always excited to read a new one from this rare artistic flower to come out of a country of robots….
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“Man, being the servant and interpreter of Nature, can do and understand so much and so much only as he has observed in fact or in thought of the course of Nature.  Beyond this he neither knows anything or can do anything.”
“The study of nature with a view to works is engaged in by the mechanic, the mathematician, the physician, the alchemist, and the magician; but by all (as things now are) with slight endeavor and scanty success.”
“Even to deliver and explain what I bring forward is no easy matter, for things in themselves new will yet be apprehended with reference to what is old.”
Sir Francis Bacon
Novum Organum
1620
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I feel very strongly that soon, writing fiction will be my next THING.  I mean, like a REAL NOVEL.  It can be done…it has been developing at its own natural pace for years.  Novels, sure—
but rather, REALITY, the reality of MY LIFE, thinly-veiled as fiction.  I have a thousand stories to tell, many smaller tales that could be turned into the premise for many different types of immortal masterworks.  I have only to accomplish the final hurdle…TO ACTUALLY TAKE THE TIME TO DO IT.  My signature style will be PERFECT for this ultra-modern age of short attention spans and straight-up A.D.D.  It will be ultra minimalism— short volumes of 180 to 225 pages of fictional wizardry…to stuff more meaning into a short book than most could manage to fit into a thousand pages.  No War and Peace, noDon Quixote—just pure tomhbrooks3.
I ALREADY KNOW WHERE I`M GOING;
I JUST HAVE TO FIGURE OUT HOW TO GET THERE…
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“There are two things that are important in politics.  The first is money.  I can`t remember what the second one is.”
Mark Hanna
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WISDOM
“We see everything through ourselves.  We are a medium always interposed between things and ourselves.”
“There is, in language, something of fate and inspiration.”
“The soul is to the eyes what sight is to the touch; it seizes what eludes the senses.  As in Art, the greatest beauty is beyond law, so in knowledge the highest and truest is beyond experience.”
“Imagination is the eye of the soul.”
“There are some who can only find activity in repose, and others who can only find repose in movement.”
“The evening of life comes bearing its own lamp.”
“THE STUDIOUS IDLER KNOWS THAT HE IS AGING, BUT CARES LITTLE; FOR HIS KIND OF STUDY HE WILL ALWAYS BE EQUALLY FIT.”
“A fine old age is a fine promise to all who behold it; for everyone may hope the same for himself, or for those around him.  We see in it the prospect of something that we all hope to attain; and love to see that it has beauty.”
“Our life is woven wind.”
“Let us die good-tempered if we can.”
“When we have found what we were searching for, we have no time to proclaim it;—we must die!”
“WISDOM IS REST IN THE LIGHT.  HAPPY ARE THE MINDS LOFTY ENOUGH TO BE AT EASE IN THAT RADIANCE.”
“Never regret the time that was needed for doing good.”
“Never cut what you can unravel.”
“A maxim is the exact and noble expression of an important and undeniable truth.”
“Alas!—always busied with other people`s duties and never with our own!”
“Happy is he who is only fit for one thing; in doing it, he fulfills his destiny.”
“There is in the mind a perpetual circulation of unconscious arguments.”
“PLACES DIE LIKE MEN, ALTHOUGH THEY APPEAR TO LAST ON.”
“It seems to me much harder to be a modern than one of the ancients.”
“Antiquity—I love it better in ruins than restored.”
“We live in an age when superfluous ideas abound, and necessary ideas are lacking.”
“Men have torn up the roads which led to Heaven, and which all the world followed; now we have to make our own ladders.”
“To be capable of respect is almost as rare these days as to be worthy of it.”
“There was a time when the world influenced books, now books influence the world.”
“To be natural in Art is to be sincere.”
“Poets have a hundred times more sense than philosophers.  In their search for beauty, they light upon more truths than philosophers find in their search after truth.”
“The true poet has words that show his thoughts; thoughts that reveal; and a soul that mirrors all things.  He has a mind full of distinct images; whilst most minds are only full of confused indications.”
“Every work of genius, be it epic or didactic, is too long if it cannot be read in one day.”
“He who has no poetry in himself will find poetry in nothing.”
“Misery is almost always the result of thinking.”
“To teach is to learn twice.”
“All gardeners live in beautiful places because they make them so.”
“Sometimes a vague term is preferable to a precise one.  Some obscurities are elegant; some are majestic; some even necessary—for they make the mind imagine what no clearness could make it see.”
“Literary style consists in giving substance and form to the thought, by means of the phrase.”
“It is great Art to know how to make one`s thought fly like an arrow, and bury itself in the attention.”
“There is a `bookish` style of writing, which savors rather of paper than of the world, of authorship rather than of the essence of things.”
“Genius begins great works, but labor alone finishes them.”
“The books that we plan to re-read in our old age are something like the places where we should wish to grow old.”
“Young writers give their minds a great deal of exercise, but very little food.”
“I have sought repose everywhere and have only found it in a little corner with a little book.  HAPPY THE WRITER WHO CAN MAKE A BEAUTIFUL LITTLE BOOK.”
“THE END OF A WORK SHOULD ALWAYS RECALL THE BEGINNING.”
JOSEPH JOUBERT
(APHORISMS)
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9/2/13
THE TRAIN INCIDENT (The Angry, Violent Old Guy and the Cowering Woman)
 
It was about 5:40pm, the heart of Tokyo`s nightmare rush hour.  There was a shuffle and a commotion in front of me by the door where I would get out 3 stops later.  It looked as if some grumpy bulldog of an old man had slapped or shoved at a woman for some unknown reason.  She kind of stumble-stepped back next to me, cowering like a whipped dog.  The old man then turned around with this UGLY, hateful look on his reddish, bullfrog`s face and glared at her viciously.  Now, as is characteristic of the Japanese, NO ONE SAID A SINGLE WORD.  Hundreds of people were crammed on this train, mind you, and not one of them acted as if anything unusual had happened.  No one but ME, that is.  I had my headphones on when I observed this strangeness.  I couldn`t hear myself, but I`m quite sure I let out an audible guffaw that did not escape the notice of the angry man.  He turns the stinkeye in my direction while I`m standing there smiling and I gave him a look like, “What, FUCKER?!?”  My crazed bloodshot blue eyes must have given him pause or alarmed him for he quickly turned away.  Frankly, he was so ugly, I wanted to crack his head against the wall on general principle, but I reeled myself in and continued to laugh to myself.  That didn`t seem to stop him from turning around a few more times to glare at the lady, though.  I don`t know WHAT happened, if anything.  For all I know, she could have been groping his nut sack, or trying to pick his pocket.  It could have been his ex-wife!  In all honesty, I really DON`T CARE what happened.  Just stay outta MY WAY, ya little bastards!
The woman looked about 45, and she stood next to me, still shivering like a poodle in the rain.  When he got off at Higashi-Ojima Station, he turned back to give her one more of his trademark furious looks, and then he disappeared into the crowd.  I conveniently used the space cleared by the recent commotion to step in front of everyone and position myself in front of the doors so I could make a quick exit and escape at my stop, which was the next station.  THAT`S how it`s done, bitches!  Use other people`s weird little fucking problems to your advantage!  Push everyone aside and make sure the little scumbags stay outta your path…..GOOD OLD AMERICAN RUDENESS!!!!
___________
SADISTIC BONDAGE at that `international school`
Oh!  And have I mentioned the latest sad comedy show at ****** “International School?”  No, I don`t think I have….
So this one poor little boy, about 5 years old—we`ll call him “D,” well, he has cerebral palsy, which is in no way funny.  The poor kid is stiff like a tree branch.  You can carry him under your arm like a 2X4.  In any case, these idiots that run the place tie his little withered, stiff limbs to wooden boards that are fashioned like big, clunky, retarded Frankenstein shoes.  Now, when I saw that two days ago, I thought THAT was bad enough.  BUT….then I came into the room today and his whole body was strapped to a long board with a dirty Ace bandage.  What the fuck, man?!?  Seriously, this shit is HORRIFIC and seems as if it borders on straight up child abuse.
The little guy was howling and crying at first.  When I came back later, he was just lying there looking really confused.  As horrible as it was, I couldn`t stop laughing because it`s just so goddamned ridiculous!  I mean, they strap him on there really tight because they are stupid enough to THINK it`s gonna straighten his atrophied limbs.  That shit is MEDIEVAL!  I already KNOW that it doesn`t work.  You can research it.  You can even watch some shit about this on YouTube.  I saw many techniques, but not this!  Sure, physical therapy is good; maybe walking him on a treadmill or some light stretching would be good.  But twisting him up like a pretzel and
strapping him to a 2X4 with dirty Ace bandages?!?  No.  I don`t think so.  Those people are fucking insane and I have GOT TO GET OUT OF THERE.  Otherwise, I`m afraid I`ll end up in a rubber room in a straitjacket chewing on a dog toy and eating Kibbles and Bits.
I weep for the future.  This kid is gonna have bad dreams about that place as long as he lives.
What is WRONG with those people?!?  I`ll tell you what`s wrong; they`re STUPID & EVIL.
(I`ll have you know, I didn`t let this one go easily.  I laughed my ass off with the boss responsible for it standing right outside the door listening to my torrent of sarcasm and hysterical laughter.  He got irritated with me and I told him to his face that it was MEDIEVAL.  I don`t know if his English is good enough to know that word, but when he looks it up, he`s gonna be even madder..)
____________
INTERLUDE (The White Spaces Between the Words)
A forest of words…
To find repose
in her cool shade
To luxuriate hidden
deep in the shadows
while birds sing
their cryptic songs
The silence of
stone
Mute
Unmoving
The quiet flow
of a river
carving
through rock
Like the river
the words flow
cutting through our existence
with relentless force
The power
of a blank page
waiting to be filled
with meaning
Another dimension
deceptive
yet true
taking many forms
A soliloquy of dreams
uttered alone beneath trees
bearing abundant fruit
to nourish the soul
Language;
loaded symbols
that speak volumes
with a whisper or a scream
…And the white spaces
between the words—
a void of silence
vibrating with soundless music
Yes, this forest of words…
The poet, like the birds
sings his mysterious song
in a green slumber
often overlooked or unheard
He grows and flourishes
with the trees
there
in that quiet wood
A cool wind blows
and rattles the branches
A transformation takes place…
POETRY
9/6/13, 7:30AM    Tokyo, Japan
________________________________
 
A good title for something
TORRENT
________________________________
Lost Voices (The Asylum)
 
Cool and crackling dry trees
bathed
in shadows
Faded bricks
colored
in spray-painted belligerence
Empty overgrown roads
leading
to still more desolation
Sad, dusty hallways
colder
than the tomb
Hazy light filtered through
broken
windows that cancel time
Hollow wind
howling,
the silence of ghosts…
A place beyond time
in the Great Swamp
Lost Voices
on an island,
forgotten…
___________________
see the fourth photo at the beginning…
___________________
ALRIGHT, THAT`S IT…..I`M DONE…
THB3

 

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