Commerce Scrapbook

/ Civilization / Commerce /

Harry’s Cost in Marx
2015 04 05 Surf online you’ll see Harry’s ad: “Should an 8 pack of blades really cost $32?”
Who is that addressed to? Who’zit supposed to appeal to? I’m not employed in anything resembling manufacture with steel or extruded plastics. I neither retail nor wholesale nor manufacture nor distributeshaving equipment: how should I know about setting the retail prices for Harry’s razors? let alone the wholesale price? Do you?
Who is so stupid, so ignorant as to think that anything manufactured “should” have any particular price? Marx? Marxists? No, no: I know: government people! bureaucrats!

In my business I quickly learned how to calculate the minimum price something I manufactured must be: it allowed for manufacture, for distribution, for wholesaling, for retailing: all those prices had to be pre-calcuated. If it cost me $1 to make, in my particular business then the retail had to be set at at least $8. I look at the thing, whatever it is: could I sell this for $8?
That automatically also means, can I wholesale it for $4? and can I bulk market it for $2? Will I sell enough of them to cover my nut?
If I sell them all, I’m rich as Croesus. If I sell half, and actually get paid, I’m doing OK. If I sell many fewer than half I’m belly up.

If I can, and I do sell some, then I’m in business. If not, I’m bankrupt.
So: if you don’t trust that you can sell it for $8 / $4 / $2, stay away.
Understand the obvious: Sell them in bulk, get paid, you double your money! Sell some retail … you don’t need my advice.

But the modern world isn’t anything like all that. And zillions of traditional thefts are taken for granted: the US doesn’t pay rent to Sutter, doesn’t pay royalties on cybernetic data bases to me, doesn’t pay the Africans for their uprooted populations, their enslavement, their environmental catastrophes … Cocoa costs so much from a conquered people; cocoa costs an entirely different range of prices where all parts in the process have to be covered, paid for, not just raped and stolen.
In Marxism, the state steals the factory from the bourgeois: the state sets the price, the state fucks up the manufacturing. The state corrupts the distribution process. And before the state can go belly up the state just covers its loses by more taxes.
I don’t know, Harry’s: how much should your blades cost? Whatever you can get away with is the time honored answer.


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Lake Placid Singles

/ HierCon (Hierarchy vs. Conviviality Stories) / Neighbors /

A couple of years ago Susie of the Lake Placid Dance Club asked me to teach a Greek line dance at the Feb 8 dance. The music was Never on Sunday. The line dance was on video at UTube.
I agreed: despite not knowing the dance.
Susie also emailed me some steps.

It was late January, I had a week and a day to learn the dance. That ought to be OK, normally I can learn a dance, especially a line dance / folk dance, in a minute or two.
That weekend, first of February, a woman at a different dance told me she’d seen Susie’s ad in the paper advertising me as the teacher. Good, Susie was promoting it.

Things got very complicated, but Feb 8 was coming fast. The dance was proving a little tricky to learn. Susie had emailed me steps. But those steps weren’t the steps in the YTube video!
Anyway: the lesson was advertised for 5 PM. I was on time, but nervous: I was satisfied that I knew the dance well enough to “teach” it, but only by the skin of my teeth. I felt like an actor given the role of Hamlet but only on condition that he learn the part overnight, earn the part with the first performance.
I entered, burning with focus: don’t talk to me: I can’t walk and chew gum at the same time: I’m in my little world here, very shaky, don’t break my bubble.
And DeeDee came up to me. She was going to help me teach the dance. But she was ging to teach me a different version of it: here, very simple …
I said, Go away, Don’t talk to me, I’m focused on what I’ve rehearsed.

Then Susie came over. Suzie wanted to teach me a still different version of the dance. …

Wait a minute: more than one thing is very wrong here.
And already I haven’t told the story quite right:
Susie apparently had asked DeeDee to teach the dance before she’d asked me. Fine.
But DeeDee had refused: she didn’t know the dance. She’d said No. I didn’t know the dance either; but I’d said Yes. Now, get out of my way, where are my students?

I never saw any students: only DeeDee — and Susie, each trying to teach me a different version of the Never on Sunday dance! Their steps didn’t match the video at UTube. Their steps didn’t match the steps emailed the week before. …
I’m a teacher. I’m a tortured teacher. I’ll undergo new torture in order to teach, but then at least let me teach! Where are the student?
The weekend before a woman had told me she’d seen the lesson advertised in the paper, she was looking forward to attending, to learned from me. I didn’t see that woman, I didn’t see any woman: only Susie: and DeeDee.

Later on DeeDee said I’d been nasty to her: that’s possible: but don’t asked the waiter carrying dinner for six for a light while he’s balancing the trays. Don’t talk to the understudy as he mounts the stage to do a part he hasn’t had rehearsal time for. And don’t make casual conversation with Jesus as he’s carrying the cross. …

What a mess. I’ve already written too many drafts of this, going back two years.

From 2015 perspective:
Susie should have made it clear who the teacher was. If DeeDee said no and I said yes, then I was the teacher. DeeDee had no business appointing herself as my assistant: not right at class time.
Where was the class? If no one had shown up, shouldn’t Susie have cancelled the class, telling me first?
Understand further: my teaching has long been sabotaged: a week was plenty of time for my enemies to sabotage Susie’s class. Should I have warned Susie? My enemies will do to you and your plans what they did to the YMCA and the Y‘s plans? Barbara Hester’s network for poison was probably vaster than Susie and the newspaper’s promotions.

Does Jesus owe the Temple a warning before he visits for Passover? (In Christian theology, Christian theology is itself the warning. No additional warning should be needed. Should the US have to tell Afghanistan about the American land mines salted all over Cambodia before Afghanistan allows the US to salt American land mines all over Afghanistan.
No, no. Adam and Eve are already the warning.)

February 2014 I already promised to post here emails on the subject: particularly those to and from DeeDee.
Susie doesn’t seem to understand that deals she makes should be consistent: if you hire Paul, then you din’t also hire DeeDee: if DeeDee declined then DeeDee can’t reappoint herself … or, if she can, Paul should be warned.

To me both woman amply showed that they are incapable of understanding the most basic basics of fairplay. Emailing with them is a waste of time, they can’t read.

Neighbors Non-Convivial Menu

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FLEX in Hell’s Kitchen

/ DeCentral / DeGate / DeSchool / FLEX Experience

I share an email I just sent to bk:

I remind you:
I ran FLEX from 39 Claremont in 1970, Etta in Geneva
from 305 RSD once we moved there
and from Hells Kitchen once some guy there called FLEX and asked me if I wanted a building on 53 St West of 11th.
It was hell on wheels, and the beginning of the end:
my Olivetti was stolen, Noreen’s bicycle was stolen

the worst was coming into my office one evening and find the Free Food recipients dumping FLEX files onto the floor to use the file cabinets to haul free carrots away.

No, maybe the worse was having two phone bills to pay out of Hilary’s $5/hr: and there was the expense of traveling to 53 instead of just rolling out of bed and walking to the kitchen. Noreen pedaled till the theft of her wheels.

Hells Kitchen came up apropos of Netflix offering a movie of DareDevil (which I’d never read nor seen). The DareDevil characters is a guardian of Manhattan’s Hells Kitchen neighborhood.

The reader should know:

Hilary was pk’s wife: FLEX’s (and pk’s) only source of income!
The public was of course always invited to pay for their own institutions; the public declined. I and my dozen volunteers failed to raise enough to pay the phone bill let alone dump governments, universities, schools … replace kleptocracy with open cybernetic data bases, non-coercive.
Etta was Hilary’s mother, an economist at the UN whose Claremont Avenue apartment we’d apartment-sat for her 1970 year abroad.
Noreen was FLEX’s original volunteer. She worked for years without so much as a subway token for payment.
Hells Kitchen is a famous (infamous) west side neighborhood: ask Sylvester Stallone.)

I’d worked in Hells Kitchen the summer bk was born (scheduled to move to Waterville Maine to teach at Colby College come auturmn), employed at Outrider Motorcycles (where I’d bought my little Yamaha). FLEX’s disastrous free building was the next block north.
FLEX had the main floor. The top floor was occupied by a very hostile women’s group: who thought that their group was The group, their revolution The revolution; not seeing at all that FLEX was The revolution: women’s liberation is at biggest a lesser part of everyone’s revolution: transform all human relations and women’s role would also transform. Typically, they had their priorities backwards.

Deschool Menu

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TED Talks, to pk

/ Favorites / Science /

I became addicted to the TED Talks series of TV pontifications only last week. For that time I’ve watched at least a couple a day, starting with the Animal Voices series, exceptionally impressed by Laurel Braitman: and her lesson on what physicians could (and should) learn from veterinary medicine. Since then normalcy has been restored to some extent: some of these TED Talks speeches are glib, ignorant … wrong headed. First I incorporate here my first couple of scribbles, will edit, coordinate second:

Self Harm
2015 04 08 I’ve been absorbed by the TED Talks series, watching several titles, a few episodes each. I’m particularly taken by the animal voices series. The last I watched featured a doctor faulting her profession for snobbery and ignorance with regard to the qualities and relevance of vet skills. She was observing how knowledge of humans can help vets treat non-human animals; but simultaneously vet knowledge can help physicians with human patients: we have a lot in common. Fer instance: we all know of people harming themselves: a watched a painful film a few months back in which Isabel Huppert cuts her genitals with a razor: very neat, rinses the blood down the drain, rinses the tub. Well, animals harm themselves too on occasion, our illnesses overlap. The film showed a bird who had plucked the feathers from its chest.
Ah! And a memory flooded back. I got a cockatiel when I lived in Long Beach. It was a sick bird when I got it, it was sick when I asked a friend to care for it while I went away on business. David and family moved my cockatiel into his TV room already full of canaries, parakeets. Jesus, overnight my bird stopped plucking herself, regrew feathers … and laid an egg! We mated her. She was fine from then on!

thanx animalslook

Meme Spreading
2015 04 07 The last couple of days I’ve been sampling an “educational” TV series, TED Talks: Technology-Entertainment-Design. Very damn good, the three collections I’ve tasted so far. One gal talking knowledgably, wisely, about animal mental states, empathy … antrhopomorphism. She said we can’t help but anthroopomorphize, but there’s bad and good ways of doing it. She was tring to guide us toward good ways. En route she talked about social animals: the importance of caring for mental health.
Yes, yes. And I remembered, in every fiber of my consciousness, this morning, feeling Jan adjust the sheet and blanket up around my chin as she rose from the bed to stay up. She was giving herself, and me, a huge jolt of sanity.
Hilary used to wish outloud that I’d “groom” her more: she needed less lust and more gentle affection. Unfortunately lust is what I felt; not gentle affection. With Jan I feel both: lust and gentle affection, flowing, nurturing, in both directions. Bless her. And me too.

Revert to Norm
TED Talks: Into the Abyss, Robert Ballard, Exploring the Oceans
2015 04 10 Cousteau’s Silent World knocked me out in the mid-1950s. I’ve watched everything related that I came across since then: with utter worshipfulness once we got to David Attenborough’s fabulous use of BBC resources. So: I was ready and eager for some TED installments.

For starters, though I found him a little hectic, a little shrill, I was all for Robert Ballard. He seemed to be 100% in my corner when he said that in school to do well on a test you had to give the wrong answer! that is, the orthodox answer: not what Galileo thought but what Galileo’s colleague professors thought. So: for starters he exposes the school and university system. Bravo, go go. A half century late (I founded the Free Learning Exchange in 1970.) And I loved it when he said he’d never let an adult drive one of his hi-tech machines, but he lets kids drive them all the time, and very well they drive them too: the kids having computer game experience, coordination, instincts over their elders. Right on, further along the same track!
It starts to go south when he praises the government’s new information highway, broad bandwidth, fast, etc. And goes totally south when he praises the universities! What? Suddenly, they’ve changed? they’ve learned!?

No: just more horseshit. OK. Ballard and his teams are learning, are exploring, are discovering, but it’s too late: it’s Jewish priests becoming slick after they’ve crucified Jesus.

(Or: it’s like cricitizing the vulgarity of how the Brinks robbers spent their loot, but then praising how their kids spend reinvested residuals.)

2015 04 13 I’ve had a few days to digest the episode featuring Bernie Krause. I entreat you to watch this doc, and listen to it! I don’t believe that human beings are capable of saving themselves, but I sure love the mountain of evidence against us: no part ever more than Krause’s.


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April Fool

/ Chat / Seasonal /

Whan that Aprille with his shoures soote


I phoned Jan to tell her that Carole, my other best dance partner, would be with us at the dance tonight. She said, No, she had a dinner date.
She said, Yes, she met a new guy, very nice, and she had to go to dinner with him.
April Fool!

I’m 76 1/2. She’s 83 1/2. And she fools me like that.
Carole is 79 9/10 or so and has leukemia. It’s supposed to be terminal, it was supposed to be terminal last Thanksgiving! She’s still as gorgeous as she was in 1953 when Life gave her a full page in her cheerleaders outfit! That is, she’s almost as beautiful as Jan!


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I keep dozens of scrapbooks here, a dozen or so of them I made “monthlies”: that is, I dated them the first of the month, updating the fictional date each month. But now I’ll keep just one: this one. Here I’ll jot notes to be further developed, maybe elsewhen, maybe moved elsewhere. This is, some may promote to modules; others may remain entries in scrapbooks.

Goose Roar
2015 04 17 Last evening there was a huge roar overhead, low flying monster plane: Howard Hughes’ Spruce Goose lining up to land on my trailer roof: rumble, shake, went on and on.

Howard Hughes' Spruce Goose
thanx findingdulcinea

I just sat there, playing my game, didn’t budge. And I remember being blasé about overhead terror when I was a toddler in WWII. The first couple of times we got shook by mechanical thunder overhead we ran around, wildly searching for “cause”: after a few such, we ignored the war, the danger: there was no terror: just civilization as usual.

Answers, Then & Now
2015 04 16 You know these pesky pop up links that tempt ensnarement in a web of ads with teasers such as The Lucy Show, Then & Now? Taxi, Then & Now? I just spent a minute getting run around over Farrah Fawcett, Then & Now? And of course there was an image! Jeez, what a mug she had! Irresistible. But I can never see references to her in her prime without remembering, with vivid embarrassment, an exploitation of her physiognomy that I wish she had been able to sue over: if not jail the image rapists. It was an Art Expo, later 1970s. My PK Fine Arts, Ltd. had a couple of booths. My customer, Richie, shop in Lake Success, had a big spread. Richie himself was big, fat, puffy, a financial marshmallow. He had people walking around the expo that time in body paint: silver boobs, silver bush. That was OK, the models were paid, I don’t think they were drugged. But one of Richie’s clowns, his expo performers, carried a sandwich-board-size re-pro of Farrah’s fantastic face, with the mouth drilled out. He’d set the prop on the floor, show the gaping mouth, then shove his pelvis against her printed face: giving himself a Farrah blowjob all over the Columbus Circle Coliseum.
Later I heard that the FBI lurking about that year to arrest Richie for forging certificates of authenticity for fake Miros. They were supposed to be lurking for Ted too, my girlfriend’s husband. But not much happened.
Something must have happened because I heard Richie moaning about presumption of innocence. …
Jeez, if anybody ever should have been presumed guilty, not presumed innocent, it was Richie!
But I shouldn’t rag Richie, especially not after thirty-seven or more years. Richie I now believe was actually a shade more honest than most of the bastards I dealt with. He only told the lies you insisted on hearing, and his checks actually cleared. Those two things along elevate him toward sainthood.
Ted never did get nailed that I heard of, but his reputation was pure toxicity.
(Some of the things rumor charged me with came true even if they started out false: when you’ve been robbed blind, it’s hard for your checks to keep clearing.)

Forgiveness Notice
2015 04 08 Christianity is the major religion in the world in terms of which civilization is the major religion of: Christianity is the major religion of the industrialists, of the capitalists. Christianity is the major religion of the homes of the major Foture500 corporations.
Now, note especially: Christianity is the major religion of the idea of forgiveness. God sent his son, let us torture him to death, lie about him, betray him, not get a single thing right: so that God can forgive us!
If we do the rituals right, God has to forgive us, he has no choice in the matter. Religion here is the matter of giving choice, free will, to the God killers while taking free choice away from God himself. Will God get a word in edgewise at Judgment. I hope to see him try. But I’m not holding my breath. The evil magicians will never let an honest magician onto the stage, never let him hold the mic for as long as the seven-second-delay.

Educating Ignorance
2015 04 08 I’ve told fragments of this (set of) story(ies), but I can write it separately fast, incorporate only laboriously: time running out.
Joining two threads: why pk is such a piss-poor piano player, why pk’s background is chronically impoverished.
I’m told I was taken for piano lessons when I was three. Most of the hour was spent trying to build a pyramid of telephone books on the stool, already cranked to its highest reach, so that my tiny hand might reach the awesome keyboard. Once there, teetering, my mother holding the improbable pile somewhat steady, the teacher told me to put my right hand fingers, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 on the keys: thumb, pointer … middle C, D, E, F, G. No way could my hand spread five keys wide. “Bring him back when his fingers can spread to five keys”, said the teacher.

But the second beginning of my piano education never commenced. Mom threw Dad, the drunk, the philanderer, out. Dad thought, I’ll show her: and that was the last money we ever had from him.

The law said it could make him pay, but it never did. (I know, in parallel: the law told my wife that it could make me pay; not if I don’t want to pay, I said: not so long as I’m willing to remain unemployed for my whole life) (thereby also not paying to bomb Asians).

Anyway, the August Paul Knatz Senior marriage started to unravel (in this following version of the story) when Mom was at a party. She was introduced around as “Mrs. Knatz”. “That’s not Mrs. Knatz”, some woman volunteered; “I’ve met Mrs. Knatz”. Apparently Dad was going around registering himself with every girlfriend he’d ever had in Brooklyn as “Mrs. Knatz”. Every hotel in NYC knew a dozen “Mrs. Knatz”s; none of them my mother.

Ay yai yai, so many threads I’m trying to weave: I’m forgetting them. But I have managed to tell of my three year old childhood.

Note: we had a baby grand piano at home. But it was in execrable tune. I sat at the keyboard as a child, pressed a key, pressed another key. It was awful, no chord sounded anything but awful. In contrast it was so easy to put a record on the player, hear Bach, Chopin … Eventually I’d be hearing Dixie, and then jazz: and there, in addition to Bach, was my obsession for the next couple of decades.
2015 04 09 You know I want to bring up another consideration: the piano has been our default instrument for centuries, but that’s recent. The piano is the familiar even-temperament instrument: it can sort of play in any key, only-sort-of out of tune: the blue note doesn’t exist on the piano, however natural it is to the voice, to the violin, to the sax … Several modesties kept me from expressing my natural voice, but it was pure poverty that kept me from the sax, or the bass.
Anyway, the first instrument I took up as an adult was the recorder (the straight up and down wooden (or plastic) flute). But the recorder only had two octabes: I wanted to play a Miles / Zawinull thing from the Real Book, I needed a Bb below middle C. So I got a regular flute: only to learn that the flute also didn’t have a Bb below middle C! Pleanty of higher notes, but no lower notes. But I also soon encountered advice to play a chord instrument in addition to any melodic instrument: want to improvise on sax? learn piano! or guitar!
So I bought a cheap keyboard. Wow, did the value of that $100 stretch on and on, for years, decades.
And no I’m so used to keyboard, I no longer mind that there’s no blue note: I can get around that the same bunch of ways thousands of others have: blurs, slurs, slides …

Yesterday I sat at my Roland keyboard, self taught since the 1980s, Stella By Starlight on the music stand, and tried, as I do every day, to coordinate the melody (beautiful, simple, easy) with the chord progression (highly counterintuitive: pure jazz, going from Em7 b5 for the first measure to A7 for the second measure: to Cm7 for the third measure, to F7 for the fourth measure …
But I know from a million playings, over decades, the key is BbM7! How does BbM7 launch from Em7b5?
Far out!

The Em7b5 / A7 is oh so familiar in jazz: it signals that you’re in D minor (which is often actually C!)
But where’d the Cm7 / F7 come from? And what’s next? Fm7! Bb … insane.

Note: I just drafted that all wrong: confusing Beautiful Love, which also launches from Em7b5 / A7: and is Dm!
How many others has that diminished second confused?

Secret Typer: To Type or Not to Type
2015 04 18 I taught myself touch typing at age twenty-one. I went from hunt-and-peck typing to touch typing in 24 hours, 24 continuous hours, no breaks, brief meals only: in 24 hours I achieved moderate speed, better-than-average accuracy. When I invite my beloved Jan to type something she repeats that she can’t, she doesn’t know where the letters are: and, at eighty-three, coming up on eighty-four, her sight long since short of 20/20, searching might help but only very slowly, too slowly to make sense for messaging: it does no good to crunch a bunch of numbers to predict tomorrow’s weather if the crunching takes a millennium or more to attempt: it’s easier just to wait till tomorrow, and see.

So: I type, very fast, more than accurate eough, Jan doesn’t type at all, blazons it if cornered, and …

I remember vividly, and sympathetically, why Etta (Hilary’s mother) concealed what typing ability she had: she was a woman! employed (as an economist) by the United Nations, and she knew, knew in her marrow, that if the UN heard she could type, being a woman, they would naturally flood her with typing. She would be given less and less economics and more and more typing: and somehow they would find ways to stall her salary, trying to decrease it to what the kleptocracies of the world paid typists: as little as possible.
I had a good reason for teaching myself typing when I did: I had a paper due. The paper was actually fifty-one weeks overdue. I hadn’t done it when it was due, I’d missed graduation. Columbia let me attend the graduation ceremonies, invite my family, etc., but it came from on high, way below the belt, that I had one year, and no more, 52 weeks, not 53 weeks, to submit late my senior seminar paper: otherwise, throw my four (now five) years of Columbia away. Instead of graduating, I’d stay fallen in the dust bin.
So: the paper was due, I hadn’t written a word. Now I had one week to do it. It could be a year late, it couldn’t be a year and a day late.
Now: I wrote my papers on the typewriter, had since age ten. Hunt and peck. I believed that if I had only 24 hours left to write the paper, think the paper, proof the paper, submit the paper, I’d do it, just squeaking by, Knatz-style.
I knew since age ten that I made myself dizzy by looking at my source material (say, Leaves of Grass when quoting Whitman) then looking at my keyboard — then looking back to the Whitman … I knew, sudenly of a certainty, that I’d work with less headache if I could touch type, save looking back and forth. So I did. I learned touch typing to procrastinate on a paper I’d already procrastinated a year on. Actually you could say I’d already procrastinated more than a year: I know students who would have submitted the finished paper at least six months before the due date.
Silly: Whitman is the wrong souce to cite: I quoted Whitman in high school, I’d forgotten Whitman in college. All my materials that needed copying were on Bunyan: Pilgrim’s Progress.
So: I learned touch typing, and did squeak the paper in at the year-past-due second-and-last deadline. The result was reported elsewhere.

Pandora Nuke
2015 04 07 I’ve been dipping into Pandora’s Promise, an egregious screen on nuclear power: dangers, harms have been exaggerated (I don’t doubt that’s true), dangers, harms are routinely misdiagnosed in our ignorance (I don’t doubt that’s true) … we need more power to continue to aim at prosperity while growing out populations (I don’t doubt that’s true) … It shows “environmentalists” caught in convictions that didn’t pan out … blah, blah … all as though nuclear power were safe, sane, understood … known. Balderdash.
At no point this this propaganda come within a mile of the concerns that I see as relevant: is civilization a sustainable enterprise? Can we grow our nations into the billions, and then double them, then double them again and continue to hope to live? and not continue to be ass-out ridiculous?
Reagan Logic
Reagan understood correctly that you could derail any pursuit involving reason if you threw in a consideration of continuint or growing prosperity. Don’t ask people if they want surviving grandchildren; as them if they have $1, do they want $1.10? or $2.00? Greed, optimism, will displace reason every time.
Right now, as to date, rational discussion is not possible. Politics will undercut examination. But: that doesn’t mean that consequences won’t be whatever the consequences are, regardless of what consequences are imagined (or are failed to be imagined). If smoking is cancerous then people who smoke, regularly, will get cancer: it doesn’t matter what they see coming.
The consequences of the train wreck will not be limited by dangers the passengers discussed before the train wreck.
My scenario:
We see greed for power as having disagreeable as well as agreeable consequences. we argue that we’ll be fine so long as examination never becomes intelligent, that politics will remain powerless to discuss optimum populations … then, there’s the train wreck, or the ecstasy … Will we be alive? oh, not us, but our granchildren? will anything we care about be alive?
and never mind how much is in the bank. never mind whether the corpse got a raise that it can’t spend.

In my mind we can’t afford any of the means of power production: it ain’t just nuclear.
PS K. has yet to mention: pk in the early mind-1970s worked for Stone & Webster, engineering. What did Stone & Webster specialize in? specifically? we build nuclear power plants! I was the Assistant Director of Continuing Education: I had to see that the engineers stayed informed in their skills.
Did they? Not that I could tell.

Golf Two
2015 04 07 Jan’s friends include a family with Lexi Thompson, the golfer, as a granddaughter. Golf Digest put Lexi on a cover, covering her mammaries with a towel instead of a top. Now we’re in Sex & Society Digest; not Golf Digest. Some clown writes that he’d take up golf if more women dressed like that on the golf course, but instead of yelling ‘Fore he’d yell Two!
Some mag puts Tiger on the cover, he’w wearing pants: underneath his pants he’s got a pair of balls, so what? We don’t look at the cover and think “UghGugGugGug, balls!”
Lexi is female, she’s striking-looking, she can play: she could model too, so what?
Anyway, I find it offensive for Golf Digest to shun covering women’s golf, blacking out women from the golf universe, and then suddently showing “cunt” on a cover, or boobs: same difference, almost. (Joan Rivers had a shtick on that, re: her daughter: Joan screaming, “Show them your cunt!” (but not until the price is right.))
It’s like the Royal and Ancient keeping woman from their membership as well as they ignore wogs — women, wogs, same thing — Then suddenly offering competition to Playboy, and Penthouse.
What’s parellel? I’ll tell you: Imagine the Temple of Solomon News putting Jesus on their cover, after they’ve crucified him! First, they murder him so he’ll shut up; then they want to manage his resurrection, claim agent’s fees.
Like white people sabotaging blues, then pretending that they were a major stock holder all along. Watchout, the people claiming authority from on high, never have any. It’s always pure chutzpah. like the FBI knocking me down so they can supervise the internet they stole from me, perverting the loot: and supervise me on the internet: that is to say: censor me.
Golf Digest has no right to Lexi, or to women, or to golf. Ah, but they can publish a magazine, controlling markets.
In the 1980s I knew the guy who founded Golf Digest. He wrote for Golf Magazine, had sold Golf Digest, made a pile of money … He had nothing good to say about Golf Digest then: I doubt that he’s alive to say anything of any kind now. He also loved Beethoven: and lusted for my girl friend.
He’d ask her to dinner: “Oh, and can Paul come to?” she ask.
I’d actually get a free dinner!

Boogie Woogie
2015 04 06 Everybody has weird dreams, right? But did you every have a dream about a painting? An abstract painting?
I recently found myself in a dream centered on Piet Mondrian’s painting Boogie Woogie!

Broadway Boogie Woogie
Broadway Boogie Woogie
thanx pietmondrian

As a kid, fifteen and up, I spent plenty of time in front of this painting, in MOMA of course. I haven’t been in MOMA since the middle 1960s: regardless, I never imagined dreaming of it.
There was no plot in the dream: it just centered on (an impression of) the image.
Ah, but a minute later I realize something: there’s a movie titled Boogie Woogie: with Amanda Seyfried. I like her, have ordered it, it’s on my queue. Still: why should I dream about the painting itself?

HierCon stories, Highlands Co employment
I’ll sketch some personal stories here, illustrating how society gangs up on me, sabotages my ability to live.

Kentucky Dodgers
2015 04 05 When I was a kid the Yankees always won, the Dodgers always lost: year after year, October after October. The Yankees are still New York, sort of. But the Dodgers stopped being Brooklyn a long time ago: proving that they never were; but people in Brooklyn thought they were: as the team owners knew they would think: many of our fantasies being orchestrated (the orchestrators having little idea how orchestrated they themselves are). Anyway, Brooklyn would lose, Brooklyn would go crazy: there’d be riots, looting, arson. So finally, was it 1956, the Dodgers finally won! And that night Brooklyn really burned.
Now these contests were called a World Series. The “world” was “New York” (in this case, the Bronx) and Brooklyn. New York was preordained to be the winner. It was after all the Empire state! Brooklyn, however rich in native genius, was bush, boondocks, not the empire builders, not Doctor Livingston; Brooklyn was serf country. And of course even I thought those heroes were from those places: Babe Ruth was from the Bronx, Joe Dimaggio, from the Bronx … Jackie Robinson was from Brooklyn … We thought just what the owners thought we would think, planned for us to thing, budgeted our thinking …
So were was Kentucky? Kentucky didn’t exist. Kentucky existed somewhere way way way way after Brooklyn, the famous farm for serfs.
Well this year, like last year, it was Kentucky that was supposed to win. Kentucky had the biggest budget, the fewest scruples. Kentucky was the most professionally amateur. Kentucky was coached by the biggest loudmouth, the guy with the chip on his shoulder the size of Pittsburgh.
And now they’ve lost! to Wisconsin! And last night, and today, Kentucky burns.

This file fills up fast, I empty it now and then, moving stuff to more specialized scrapbooks, promoting stuff to unique modules …


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Meta Original

/ Reality /

Which came first: your intention? or God’s intention for your intention?

We don’t know enough about the cosmos to know. But still: try to imagine. try thinking it out.

Adam might see trouble when he sees the apple, God might see trouble when he sees Adam eating the apple: but could Adam see all the trouble? (could God?)

I put paper into the roller of the typewriter. (These days I’m digital, but then I used a typewriter.) I type a provisional title, center my name. I type some text. I cross it out, smudge it, type some more text: I throw it away and start over. Finally, I finish something: I call it my manuscript. I copy it, trying to be neat, I send the result to Playboy, hoping a check will come back.

What’s the original? The paper in the waste basket? the first line, the one first crossed out? Is the original the third copy I made after the story came back from Playboy? the one I sent to Harpers? Actually I remember something earlier than the first paper put into the Olivetti: I remember the first line I typed arriving the hour before into my head as I slept, another damn hungover from too many damn martinis? I remember it to this day, forty five years later:

“All right, what’s next?”

And I remember something even earlier than that: I remember the basic story, at least the basic irony entering my head in 1958 or so when a classmate told of a wisecrack made by Moses Hadas as he closed the classroom blinds against too bright and colorful a sunset striking the west windows of Hamilton Hall? (Hadas was repeated as clucking, disapprovingly, “What a vulgar display.”)

The alien anthropologist could find my “original” first page of my first draft: and the alien could find the first typed couple of pages I sent to Playboy. Or: a human or alien priest could get to heaven and ask God: “Which manuscript is Knatz’s?”

Imagine God answering, “Never mind anything typed, or digitized; I have the original right here. I have the meta-original! with all variants, from before Knatz drank the first martini that night in 1969. I have Knatz’s brain waves from when he heard the Hadas story. I have Hadas’s brain waves as well: not to mention what Adam thought when he saw the apple, and what I thought, and said, when I saw Adam take, and eat, the apple. Indeed, I have, right here, all brain waves before, and all brainwaves ever since …”

Blah, blah: “And, all brainwaves from the Playboy office, and the New Yorker office, and the Harpers office …” And “all brainwaves from everyone who’s heard the story, then, or since … and all brainwaves from everyone who didn’t hear the story, with explanations why they didn’t hear it …”

Which is the original?

Well, if God is real, if God really ever hears or says or writes anything, if God really put the thoughts into my head, then only the set of manuscript in heaven is the original. Only the meta is real.

Note: that view is medieval Christian orthodoxy: Scholastic Realism. That’s what the Shakespeare of the fair love sonnets might say; that is not what the dark love Shakespeare would say.

Vulgar Display

I didn’t know when I first heard that Hadas story that the Greeks painted their marbles. Pretending to classicism we see gray marble; the Greeks would have seen color. I heard Hadad speak in great halls. I never heard him up close. Girlfriends quoted things he whispered (the old man joking), but I never said anything to him, formal or intimate. So I really don’t know: but, I imagine Hadas disapproving of the colored statuary. Like a Christian thinking the pew should be hard: or the Bible should be incomprehensible: stilted gibberish for English.

You want a variourum edition of Shakespeare? Never mind going to heaven to ask Shakespeare in person; ask God’s librarian, go straight to the meta-originals. All typos would evaporate, all variants be legitimate.


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