August 31, 2012

At the Pioneer Café...

Untitled

... it's all rugged individualism around here.

78 comments:

The Crack Emcee said...

... it's all rugged individualism around here.

Oh man, I wish,...

Brian said...

The American ideal of pulling oneself up by your bootstraps was a big theme at the convention. It seemed like every speaker had a story of a parent or a grandparent who started with nothing and sacrificed for their family.

I wonder if we will hear any such stories next week. Or will they all be variations on the Life of Julia?

edutcher said...

Does that mean Meade makes Ann pull the plow on the back 40?

Chip Ahoy said...

Pull yourself up by your own bootstraps. How to by Chip Ahoy.

You'll need a rope or a cable. A pulley would be useful. A winch can also be useful if you know how to use one of those. .

Pulling directly on the bootstraps will not lift you up. That will pull the boots on your feet, but that's it. To pull yourself up you must hack the bootstraps and repurpose them. Think of them as handles to a bucket. loop the rope around something secure like a tree branch. Think Batman. Attach one end of the rope to a bootstrap, loop it around a branch, pulley, bumper, telephone pole, or something sturdy so that the loose end of the rope is in your hands. Pull. Stand in the boot so that you pull yourself up. Wherever it is you're going, out of a hole, up in the air, whatever.

This concludes the pull yourself up by your own bootstraps tutorial.

Paddy O said...

So, I finished the rough draft of my dissertation yesterday. Since the beginning of February I've written about 400 pages of material. Much of this didn't fit for my more focused purpose.

So, the rough draft is coming in at about 294 pages, 108,000 words. I need to get this down to about 90,000 words before turning in a final copy. Here's a bit from my introduction: "Such as study will suggest that becoming a beloved community is a holistic theological task that, in the power of the Spirit, results in the people of God resonating the life of Christ in and through this world."

Lots of editing remains. But, it's nice to have finished the main creative work. That was my goal at the beginning of the year, to get a rough draft done by the end of summer.

So, as they say, mission accomplished. Might even get to add those extra three letters after my name before Spring ends. Which isn't so important for the letters, but for the job prospects it starts opening up.

I hear academia is a thriving business to get into these days, after all...

Paddy O said...

I think I've posted this before hereabouts, but it's fitting for this cafe. The text from a 1926 LA Examiner article about my great-great-great grandmother:

Just Hard Work Says Woman Who Did It

“Work. That’s the secret of being a centenarian,” yesterday declared Mrs. Eliza McConnell 810 East Forty-fifth Street, who will celebrate her one hundredth birthday anniversary Monday. And when Mrs. McConnell says “work” she means just that.

In the days when Cynthia, Indiana was a straggling frontier settlement, Mrs. McConnell and the other women would help the menfolk plow the field and clear the forest with axes, after the washing and household chores were finished. Mrs. McConnell was married and had nine children. When her husband was killed in the Civil War she was left alone to do the farm work and care for the children.

“Soft,” Mrs. McConnell contemptuously refers to the present generation. “They can’t compare with the boys and girls I knew. Imagine a flapper with seven children to support. The world is full of weaklings.”

Mrs. McConnell laughed at the modern housewife who requires servants.


After her husband died, she moved to Los Angeles in the 1880s. The address above is an LA address, not far from USC. Her kids, then her, were the first of my family to get to this coast, but other strands followed over the next few decades, riding trains, working farms, building piers, doing all sorts of work to make a life for themselves here in California.

Affects the way a person views the world and that view of the world is passed down to their descendents.

Paddy O said...

Here's another article about her, with a few more details. There are feminists, and then there are women who just get the jobs done.

Brian said...

My great-grandfather Arthur and great-grandmother Laura grew up together in a small town in Iowa. They married in 1922, and shortly thereafter put all their worldly possessions in a Baby Overland and drove from Iowa to Washington state, with their toddler son and Laura's teenage brother with them.

While Arthur trekked up and down what is now the I-5 corridor looking for work, Laura and the boys picked lettuce for pennies during the depression. They bought some land east of Vancouver and established a home and a farm. It is still in my family today, a solid reminder of what men and women can make of themselves.

john said...

Paddy O - that is a lot of work, congratulations, and good luck on your defence.

How many colons in the title?

Lem said...

Good luck Paddy O.

Meade said...

Wow, Paddy! And here I thought Sacagawea was the ultimate frontier woman. And congrats on accomplishing your mission!

wyo sis said...

Paddy O
What a great heritage, and you reflect well on her as well.

Meade said...

Also congrats to Chip Ahoy for pulling up laughter out of Meadhouse with your how-to tutorial.

Lem said...

Chip makes me want to be a better commenter.. and stop ripping off pop movie lines.

Lem said...

You know chip.. if you all your comments here.. just an idea.. hear me out.. (its an imaginary chip sitting in a chair)... no I'm serious you could publish them on.. whats that?

No chip, that would not be nice.

Lem said...

culled all your comments?

Make that culled all your comments.

Cull is kool.

Irene said...

Congratulations to Paddy O. That's a long haul with a lot of words.

Tyrone Slothrop said...

@Chip Ahoy 9:41

Say, can you tell us where we can get some of those bootstraps? And what the hell are bootstraps, anyway?

Lem said...

..sitting on a chair..

Its getting better, if I say so myself.

Chip Ahoy said...

Bootstraps are a western thing. They're on the sides of the tops of cowboy boots and they assist in holding the boots steady while the foot is shoved into the boot, conversely the bootstraps are shoving the boot onto the foot. Two traps per boot, four straps per pair of cowboy boots. The straps are leather loops that generally do not extend much farther above the hole where your foot gets shoved in. See cowboy boot.

You can also pick yourself up by your spurs but that's a lot sillier.

Chip Ahoy said...

You can also pick yourself up by your jock strap without even getting a wedgie, but anything over 100 LBS is a little iffy.

rcommal said...

+1

NotquiteunBuckley said...

2016.

Good, if good was a word that meant GREAT! considering all the hype.

Without the hype, 2016 is brilliant, enlightening, and inspiring.

DD indeed.

I had wanted to justify my "all leftists are the same" critique but my defense was too simplistic and collective as opposed to individualistic.

Lem said...

Angry Chair (unplugged).

ad hoc said...

Paddy O -

Congratulations. Sounds like a major endeavor and now you have a lot of it behind you. Good luck finishing the dissertation.



Lem said...

The Old Rocking Chair

Lem said...

Beanbag Chair

Synova said...

It's my birthday tomorrow and a blue moon tonight.

I'm promised a trip up the sandia peak tramway tomorrow, which I haven't done in the nine years we've lived here.

Lem said...

Rockin' Chair

Lem said...

Happy birthday Synova.

Lem said...

The Chair

Synova said...

"Bootstraps are a western thing. They're on the sides of the tops of cowboy boots and they assist in holding the boots steady while the foot is shoved into the boot,"

I read Regency romances and the English nobility in them, at least the male sorts, are constantly having their servant take care of their boots; pull them off, put them on, shine them up ever so perfectly. I get the idea that it really was a two person job to get them on and off.

Just in case this suggests further relevancy of the "pull yourself up by your bootstraps" saying.

Certainly the aristocracy never had a "boot strap."

rcommal said...

Happy Birthday, Synova! I hope your outing tomorrow is grand and glorious.

NotquiteunBuckley said...

Instead of any Hertzoq or whatever Red Blue White I would do 1: Misunderstanding and then follow it with 2: Understanding.

Then everyone would understand, no???

Lem said...

Rockin' Chair... there's more than one.. fair warning, somebody talks in this video in a foreign language, but stops soon after.

The Crack Emcee said...

"Becoming a beloved community is a holistic theological task that, in the power of the Spirit, results in the people of God resonating the life of Christ in and through this world."

Wow - really?

And where do atheists fit into that? Being oppressed by "the power of the Spirit" that all those folks are "resonating"?

Jesus, Paddy-O, why don't you just say that unless you guys get to build a cult nobody can be happy?

Or - even shorter - condense it down to "Fuck Freedom"

Lem said...

Lets check out some of that Paul Ryan music.

Can I Sit Next To You Girl?

NotquiteunBuckley said...

Although it has taken more than a little bit, or more than "quite a few" as they say, I have found a musical endeavor worthy of my Katy Perry posts.

Please note, this doesn't challenge my "Katy Perry is the greatest artist of my generation" declaration.

Thank you.

Lem said...

Here is Jack White on one of his bootstraps pulling is better.. sermon?

Sitting on Top of the World

n.n said...

It's a matter of perspective. Does the whole arise from its constituting components or does the latter emerge from the former. People who recognize and respect individual dignity perceive the former relationship. Actually, all people perceive reality in the same way. People who claim to espouse the latter relationship hope to gain an unearned advantage through the exploitation and marginalization of their competing interests. This always happens in the exception, but when it is progressive, then it engenders cultural corruption.

Lem said...

Sitting On Top Of The World

Again.. there is more than one chair.

Chip Ahoy said...

I hope this shows on your explorer and your safari if you care to see. It doesn't always on mine. Saddle in sign,

This woman is deaf. She is instructed to demonstrate the word "saddle." But what she says instead is this:

S A D L you know, horse ride

Come on, this is a dictionary. The word is 'horse CLAMP ride.' You put the clamp right where the ride is and jolted forcefully to emphasize the clamp being the saddle in its proper place. On the horse's back. Which is your hand.

This man is hearing. He holds advanced degrees in this stuff and he is very good. He's as good as I've seen, but he is clearly hearing, it's that textbook look thing again. There is no slop, no elision whatsoever, a precision that says "textbook" and deaf people do not talk like that. To be honest about it, they're rather sloppy. But he has an odd way of saying saddle. That M thing at the cheek between 'horse' and 'ride' means many things but nothing I know having to do with saddle particularly unless it is his particular word for saddle. It's the area of the face where you say home, and so domestic and domesticated, but not tamed, it is the area for the word Mexican but that is not apposite here, and it is the area for female things so 'mare' is a possibility but it is not "mare" which is 'girl' +'horse.' It's not leather, it's not soft, it's not control, it's not comfort, none of those things. So I don't know what that M at the cheek thing is between horse and ride if not 'saddle.' I've gone through that whole dictionary and not seen it anywhere else although I might have missed it.

Also his horse ears are incomplete. "horse" is two hands for two ears, and clearly horse ears to distinguish from other similar signs and that means fingers straight up then flicked as horses do, but saddle is one hand to suggest horse, so the ear must be a good horse ear. This gentleman almost looks like he's saying "no" at his forehead as if saying, "I think no".

I say the word saddle as horse CLAMP ride, like clamp a heavy blanket, and my ride is more definitely riding, my guy is really riding that thing, but for 'saddle' the emphasis is on the clamp portion sandwiched between horse ears and ride.

And believe it or not I do use words like saddle and horse and ride, and tack, bridle, bits, reins, stirrups, oats, and I said HAY!,Bartender.

Lem said...

Sitting on Top of the World.

Sitting on a horse as a kid gave me the feeling like I was on top of the world.

Lem said...

There is a panoply of videos with this same title.

Sitting On Top Of The World

Lem said...

Sittin on Top of the World

Lem said...

There is no ending to this sitting..

You can Sit in the Park...

You can also Sit on the Dock by the Bay.

Lem said...

And you can sit and play the drums at the White House and feel like you are on Top of the World.

Lem said...

Speaking of sitting on top of the world.

Apparently Google has taken over my Hotmail Contact page..

The Inbox still in the Microsoft format but not the contacts.

I guess this is the result of that annoying requests Goggle called "not the usual yada, yada".

Jim in St Louis said...

Cool pic, and cool statue.
The hand-holding makes it.

Men do not do the intimacy thing very well. Even fathers/sons. Its why gays have such trouble with relationships- unless one partner turns feminine its so tough for guys to show love to guys.

But here they are holding hands, making that connection--but not looking at each other- both focused on that something on the horizon. What do they see? Do they see the same thing?

Chip Ahoy said...

It's a little known fact most pioneers were gay. It's the chief reason so few pioneers remain today. They also scorn t-shirts as this statue shows.

The combination of coarse homespun textiles that go into shirt-making and the use of broad suspenders caused the material of the homespun shirt to act as abrasive rubbing against the pioneer's tits all day which actually led to bleeding if they were the toiling kind of pioneers as most of them were so they wore bandaids over their tits to protect them and eventually an industry developed around the production of little round pioneer tit protector pad bandaids, but the poorer pioneers, and there were many of those, used Scotch tape. So you can safely imagine bandaids underneath their shirts protecting their tits. You can also safely imagine really super nasty long johns too because they bathed once a month at most and not at all during winter. And winters are always longer where pioneers live. Tru fax.


edutcher said...

Belated, but congrats, Paddy.

But don't say, "mission accomplished". The trolls will accuse you of torturing prisoners.

Jim in St Louis said...

Chip u wack- :)

Actually that has some truth- pioneers and settlers and mountain men, and even pirates are all sub cultures that deliberately left the civilized world. I think there is no other way to look at it other than to say these are people who rejected society- or who thought they could do better outside of it.

Anything like that today? Any place you can go to just get away from the rat race/9-5/ consumerist /plastic /bullspit world we live in?
Alaska maybe? Eastern Europe somewhere? The island of misfit toys?

Lem said...

Teen killed after sticking head through party bus roof near George Washington Bridge.

Sixteen-year-old died when his head smashed into an overpass.

Jason (the commenter) said...

I'd rather see people representing that ideal than statues. But perhaps those two figures were as close to a Romney/Ryan photo as Althouse could get.

MadisonMan said...

Congrats PaddyO!

My great-grandmother was a doctor's wife. Another was a businessman's wife. A third was a cabinet-maker's wife. The fourth was a scoundrel's wife. The scoundrel's wife also moved to California -- from Waukesha -- she took five kids with her and was pregnant with #6 when she did. They went by train. Eventually she came back to her husband, but they're buried in separate counties.

MadisonMan said...

btw -- my experience was getting the rough draft done was about 99% of the thesis. Then you just go through and winnow out the excess, and that's a much easier task, at least it was for me.

So roll on home, Dr. PaddyO.

Tank said...

Of relevence to recent conversations:

Here is the exchange between Taggart and Cheryl:

“He didn’t invent iron ore and blast furnaces, did he?”

“Who?”

“Rearden. He didn’t invent smelting and chemistry and air compression. He couldn’t have invented his Metal but for thousands and thousands of other people. His Metal! Why does he think it’s his? Why does he think it’s his invention? Everybody uses the work of everybody else. Nobody ever invents anything.”

She said, puzzled, “But the iron ore and all those other things were there all the time. Why didn’t anybody else make that Metal, but Mr. Rearden did?”

From Atlas Shrugged via VFR

Paco Wové said...

Fisherman escapes shark attack, says the headline, but it's really completely the reverse of true.

Hagar said...

"Pulling oneself up by one's bootstraps" is from Baron von Munchhausen's tales.

Hagar said...

Clint Eastwood's shtick with the empty chair seems to be similar to "Oklahoma!"
All the critics hated it and the audiences loved it, when it first opened.

Meade said...

The Crack Emcee said...
"Becoming a beloved community is a holistic theological task that, in the power of the Spirit, results in the people of God resonating the life of Christ in and through this world."

Wow - really?

And where do atheists fit into that? Being oppressed by "the power of the Spirit" that all those folks are "resonating"?

Jesus, Paddy-O, why don't you just say that unless you guys get to build a cult nobody can be happy?

Or - even shorter - condense it down to "Fuck Freedom"


Where do atheists fit in? Come on, Crack - you know where they fit in. Atheism is a cult.

Yeah - wow really.

kentuckyliz said...

I used to ride hunter/jumper, dressage, and cross country--you know, the English saddle stuff. (And no I wasn't a richie rich...we were firmly middle class.) Inside those close-fitting black boots is sewn a little white webbing loop, into which you can insert your boot hooks, with which you pull your boots on. Or it can be a leather loop sewn round the top edge of the boot.

To remove your boots, your servant or in my case your Mom grabs the heel of your boot and pulls. You can do it yourself, but you're likely get stuck in the middle with your foot extended oddly and it gives you a terrible cramp in your foot and/or shin. You can use a boot jack or boot pull to DIY--you step on the tread, put the heel cup of your other foot/boot in the curved part, and pull your leg up and out. It is a substitute for the human being holding the heel cup of your boot. It liberated the servants.

OK--waiting for the Ann Romney jokes now.

The Crack Emcee said...

Meade,

Atheism is a cult.

Sure - but one with no leader, no church, no texts, and no rules, and, as far as I can tell, no members.

Good luck with that.

What is with you guys once something political happens? Do you all lose your fucking minds?

The man clearly wrote "Becoming a beloved community is a holistic theological task" and you want to bag on ME when he's the one outlining an unescapable Hell?

What kind of Americans are you? Definitely ones who have replaced your kooky Maharishi worship bullshit for any semblance of freedom,...

Pogo said...

The Founding Fathers realized freedom not despite but because of their belief in God. At a minimum, they believed they were free individuals as rights flow not from the State but are God-given.

If they are not, rights are too easily alienable, becoming solely dependent on power, for what is granted can be taken away, an empty claim to freedom that can be ignored as one philosophy among many.

That's why Christianity is so upsetting to the all-powerful State. It rejects power as the sole criterion for rights and freedom.

Hagar said...

von Muchhausen got stuck in quicksand (in Bavaria, not the old West) and, according to him, pulled himself up and out by his bootstraps.

Meade said...

"Sure - but one with no leader, no church, no texts, and no rules, and, as far as I can tell, no members."

With NO leader? But, Crack, YOU are the leader!

The Crack Emcee said...

Pogo,

The Founding Fathers realized freedom not despite but because of their belief in God. At a minimum, they believed they were free individuals as rights flow not from the State but are God-given.

And in the 18th century, that seemed like a pretty good guess, but now? Jefferson and Franklin would be shamed by such nonsense.

If they are not, rights are too easily alienable, becoming solely dependent on power, for what is granted can be taken away, an empty claim to freedom that can be ignored as one philosophy among many.

I like how, once you guys climb on this hobby horse, the word "reason" was never invented. It just disappears - poof - into your world of magic, where the non-existent man in the sky is holding it all together.

That's why Christianity is so upsetting to the all-powerful State. It rejects power as the sole criterion for rights and freedom.

So do I - and I'm not afraid of any of it.

kentuckyliz said...

The concept of inalienable rights was the idea of a Spanish Inquisition priest-theologian, as referenced by Locke in his dissertation...but Locke gets all the credit. English contempt for the Spanish, writing polemic and history for the Anglosphere, and all that. It is a fact that amuses me to no end and people buy the Black Legend like an article of faith, they can't handle this tidbit of truth. We owe a founding principle to an Inquisition priest! hee hee ha ha hoo hoo

kentuckyliz said...

"Such as study will suggest that becoming a beloved community is a holistic theological task that, in the power of the Spirit, results in the people of God resonating the life of Christ in and through this world."

Actually, that pretty much describes my parish, St. Martha Catholic Church, of Prestonsburg, KY.

Meade said...

"I like how, once you guys climb on this hobby horse, the word "reason" was never invented. It just disappears - poof - into your world of magic, where the non-existent man in the sky is holding it all together."

"The decisive statement in this argument against violent conversion is this: not to act in accordance with reason is contrary to God's nature."

Paddy O said...

Crack, the dissertationese gets in the way, but hopefully my comments hereabouts suggest I'm after something a bit different.

It's all about freedom. The sort of freedom you're after, which goes entirely against the sort of freedoms your ex-wife thought was freeing.

And atheists? Sometimes, they're the prophets among us, saying exactly why we shouldn't believe in certain kinds of gods.

Again, it's not a hierarchical domination, it's about living in a way of freedom together for the sake of a context, not to control. Cults are inherently strictly hierarchical and domineering. That's precisely what I'm arguing against.

Jesus, indeed. It's the macho response--live free. Not against the community, but to be the voice of hope, there's a better, more honest, way to live this life.

I don't know about atheists in general, but you exemplify that goal.

Paddy O said...

And like Meade said, a whole lot of atheism is a cult. Look at the 20th century. Atheism replaces the god with the state, then the bureaucrats become the angels to help us.

I'm not after a collective. Unity through uniformity never works. Unity in complexity, unity in diversity, resonating freedom to others by being free to be ourselves among others. Not satisfying our base desires, seeking after our dreams and hopes. Cults, as you know, shrink the mind and soul. Puts it on the defensive.

That's not what life should be about.

Paddy O said...

"Actually, that pretty much describes my parish,"

Kentuckyliz, what a gift. It's the fact that these places exist that gives me hope that there can be renewal across the board.

Paddy O said...

And thanks for all the kind words and congratulations everyone!

Getting that done does feel like a huge stone has been rolled aside.

The trolls will accuse you of torturing prisoners.

Well, Crack has...

I actually do appreciate his critiques of that statement. Except for the wholesale rejection of religion part, I think he and I reject the same destructive parts of religion and cultish life. I think, with kentuckyliz and others here, there can be enlivening forms of community as well. I wan that to be what the worlds sees us as.

MadisonMan, winnowing out the excess is painful at times (I need that paragraph!) but it's cleansing indeed. Focusing on what is important. Good practice for me hereabouts, as well.

Meade said...

Nicely said, Paddy. Eloquent, in fact.

Paddy O said...

Meade, thanks. Very encouraging to me, in fact.

The Crack Emcee said...

Paddy O,

And like Meade said, a whole lot of atheism is a cult. Look at the 20th century. Atheism replaces the god with the state, then the bureaucrats become the angels to help us.

I haven't found a single scrap of evidence for anything of the kind. Upon investigation, every one of the so-called "atheist" groups charged with these crimes turn out (at the very least) to be messianic, which isn't atheistic in the least.

As always, I say if you can prove me wrong, I will gladly accept the challenge. If not, please concede the point, and I will accept it that, too, with good will.

If not, do your best - you will lose.

Paddy O said...

Crack, every communist country of the 20th century specifically asserted atheism as the foundational doctrine.

Note, that's not your brand of atheism, so know that I'm not painting all atheists with that brush.

But, the fact remains that instituted atheism--whether it's France in the late 1700s, or Russia in the early 20th century, and onwards--asserts reason, imposes communism, demands atheism.

The trouble isn't the religion or lack thereof, it's the fact that there's a whole swath of people who want unity through uniformity, and will assert dominance through asserted gods, or reason, or whatever, in order to get it.

An aside, the earliest Christians were often persecuted and one of the charges was atheism. Because they didn't believe in the gods, so they must be against the state, who used the gods to keep people in line.

States and cults still do that, and I know you know that cults and states don't even need a religion in order to pursue dominance and control.

That's why I thought of France when I read your comments last week.

Compare the revolutions. France took over Notre Dame, insisted on Reason, then began a reign of terror. Set up France for Napoleon. The US insisted on Freedom, encouraged religion, and made a way of freedom that has been increasing ever since. No state religion, no state atheism.

And "no state religion" was instituted in part because of men like Roger Williams who was so zealous about religion that he didn't trust anyone else to tell him how to do it right.