With all due deference to Mr. Bill Maher, I present some "New Rules"..."Trippers and askers surround me,
People I meet, the effect upon me of my early life or the ward and
city I live in, or the nation,
The latest dates, discoveries, inventions, societies, authors old and new,
My dinner, dress, associates, looks, compliments, dues,
The real or fancied indifference of some man or woman I love,
The sickness of one of my folks or of myself, or ill-doing or loss or lack of money, or depressions or exaltations,
Battles, the horrors of fratricidal war, the fever of doubtful news, the fitful events;
These come to me days and nights and go from me again,
But they are not the Me myself.
Apart from the pulling and hauling stands what I am,
Stands amused, complacent, compassionating, idle, unitary,
Looks down, is erect, or bends an arm on an impalpable certain rest,
Looking with side-curved head curious what will come next,
Both in and out of the game and watching and wondering at it.
Backward I see in my own days where I sweated through fog with linguists and contenders,
I have no mockings or arguments, I witness and wait."
From Song of Myself, from Leaves of Grass, Walt WhitmanNew Rule 1: Read more Walt Whitman. This section above was read idly on a busy New York morning, did a fair bit of calming my own nerves. I am so scared about what's happening in our country and abroad. Not on a moment to moment basis, from wars, to having a scandalous governor, it's important to remind yourself "But they are not the Me myself." How does that apply to you? Well, the events of the day are not the same as you. One must continue breathing in and out, in and out, aware, awed, displeased. But throughout all of this chaos, I am still me, I still bear witness to the day. The universe is one - don't get swept down to the letter, down to the level of paralysis: this isn't a game of Freeze Tag.
New Rule 2: No more films about poets anymore! Unless they're good. I napped so deeply through Bright Star, I wondered if I should start marketing it for insomniacs. Sure, the performances were good. Sure the costumes were superb, as was the cinematography.... but the story [as written and performed by this cast and crew] didn't transform into one worthy of film. Maybe you liked it. I felt it was a typical young love story aside from Keats' genius, which was barely a piece of glitter upon my nap. I felt Keats' character arrogant and he seemed to care so little, while Fanny's devotion and infatuation bordered on the manic. Keats' BFF Charles Armitage Brown, played superbly by Paul Schneider. He is the only one who actually got suitably upset about the whole stinking chain of events. Again and again he barked "I killed John Keats." If I had been in the room wearing my Martha Washington bonnet, I would have tapped his shoulder lightly with my hand and whispered "No honey, it was the tuberculosis!" But I shan't say more since as I mentioned, I slept right through the thing.
New Rule 3: If you haven't watched this Youtube Video, please do. I don't know anything about it, but it's pretty special.
Yours despite the fact that I'm having an Andy-Rooney-ish type day,