Tuesday, February 21, 2017


The wonder of a million 
things is the same as the
wonder of one thing : I 
stood around taking it
all in. If I can return to
the Staten Island Ferry
for a moment, I wish to
add that the perceptual
basis of all that, (see
previous chapter) as
I broke it down after 
repeated seeings, had 
the same elemental 
quality as the rest of
life - thus the connection
of One Thing to the All.
Viewing Reality as a 
farther-off fixed point,
everything before it, in 
the 'foreground' as it 
were, was (and is) always
in motion, and is what we
react to in our daily living.
Spinning and moving.
Life thereby gets its
weird perspective, and 
the Staten Island Ferry,
by the obvious way
all of that happened, 
was in actuality a 
scientific trip through 
that premise. If properly 
explained, it could have 
been a wonderful school 
trip for any bunch of
5th grade kids. Of course,
the stupidly sanctioned
'school-teacher' crowd
of today can't think like 
that; they'd rather have
their kids dragged in and
pushed around in some
dirigible-inflation of 
poor information and 
lousy air like the 
Liberty Science 
Center, where they 
can get their science 
delivered instead as 
propaganda and
kiddie-fodder and 
go home happy and 
gleeful. I daresay
that's what passes 
for educational
protocol today.
It would do no 
great dis-service to 
the world of today 
if we simply got 
back to essentials, 
and broke down a 
lot of the unseemly 
crap that gets sponsored 
and established by 
government services  
-  grown way out of 
proportion and into
realms where it no 
longer has any business 
and was never part 
of the original
American plan at 
all. Like any of 
these Science 
Centers and Zoos 
and Hands-On Museums.
It's all such prattle. Back
in 1967, of which I'm 
here speaking, man 
when I hit the streets 
of New York there 
was no soft landing 
or safety net. It was 
real, and it was a 
forest fire. There 
was no one there, 
for any of us, to 
guide us along 
and soft-talk us 
into what we 
should or should 
no be thinking about 
things  -  or if there 
was it kept far, far 
away from the 
sort of crowd I 
was mixing with.
Listen, I'm a veteran,
but of many different
kinds of things; and
I never got anything 
from it. I had a friend
who came back from
Vietnam, completely
drained and voided of
any personality  -  
haggard and drawn 
and crazy, with a look 
in his eyes like he just
dropped his infant 
baby down a coal 
chute by mistake.
Yeah, that scary. Years
went by, I'd see him
here and there. He 
was completely 
spinning around 
town on his bicycle 
like a mad hatter. For
thirty years plus, no 
one would give him
the time of day. That
kind of veteran. Then 
one day about ten 
years ago I bumped 
into him, quite by
accident, and he was
all cleaned up  -  they'd
cut his hair and his
wild beard; he had a 
brand-new Chevy truck,
which he called 'my 
Baby.' I asked him 
how was everything, 
and he responded with
happiness. The soldier
re-hab people had taken
him in, cleared him up,
fixed and mended him,
to the point where, he 
said, he now felt 
perfectly right
and normal. Which
all meant trouble to 
me, but which to him
meant normal and
happy and right. I
was glad for him, 
at that level anyway, 
even though secretly 
I was sad they'd
taken back another 
one into their 
infernal system. 
But anyway, he 
said he was about 
to embark on
a round-the-world 
plane jaunt, on 
regular commercial 
jets, with free passes 
all, and maybe six 
or eight stops along 
the two-month journey. 
It was all paid for, the 
travel part anyway, by
government stipend, 
available to all military 
vets as part and parcel 
of their completed 
treatment. So he 
was going off, and 
thrilled by the idea
 to finally get to 
'tour' the world.  
I thought of myself 
and my little battles 
with those same 
bastard authorities
in 1967 at Whitehall 
Induction Center on 
Broadway; (same
induction year as
this guy,  as we were
the same age, or 
within a year),
and I just laughed. 
Yeah man, I was a 
veteran too, but 
of what, I couldn't 
say. But I do hope 
Kenneth enjoyed 
his jaunt.
That's what that 
whole fixed horizon 
thing is about  -  
how that distance 
stays the same but, 
right in front of 
us, all things change 
and transform. Life 
is a magical realm, 
and I had trouble 
distinguishing the 
magic, one trick 
from the other. 
Rabbits coming 
out of hats is 
one thing; acceptable, 
sort of. But I had 
hats coming out 
of rabbits, which 
made lots of things 
really difficult 
for me.

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