Archive for July, 2012

July 23, 2012

My Love Affair with Wei’Qi

I like to think that, shortly after learning of the game of Go, I experienced a meteoric rise in skill. The truth is that I progressed at about an average pace. I played a lot of games. So many games did I play, in fact, that my dreams were dreams of Go. I played professionals. I played Amateurs. I played as many people as I could find.

And yet… people would ask me, “What do you do for fun”? I would reply that I played Go, and inevitably, they would say, “What?”

Go, or Wei’Qi, is a wonderful game. In my view, better than chess. But it’s time has passed, and in its place has risen the realm of first-person shooters, and Super Mario, Galaxy. I do not mean to imply that such things are bad or not worth time. Nothing of the sort. But, for those of us who enjoy sitting down at the local pub and feeling a game piece in your hand, nothing beats the game of Go.

It is a dying art, to sit and ponder a position as abstract as the stones on a Goban. Sometimes, it is painful. You want to win so badly that you lose all focus, and then you start making mistakes. And that lies the beauty of the game. You see, Go, or Wei’Qi, is fun precisely because it is about control. It is about attack, and power, and influence, and getting inside another person’s head. Unfortunately, in the game, as in real life, such things require patience, and time. In America, the people with patience have no time, and the people with time have no patience.

Will Wei’Qi ever be popular in the West? It certainly is flagging in popularity in the East. Perhaps that is the ultimate thought. Go is an old man’s game. Even so, for all that the game belongs to the province of old men, it sure gives the feeling of infinite power.

If you’re an old man, and you want to experience infinite power, playing go might not be a bad idea. Clickeh yeh hereh, Sireth: Wei’Qi.

 

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July 23, 2012

What is Denuded Exuberance?

What is Denuded Exuberance? I first did want to choose the title of my blog as such: “Irrational Exuberance”. Alas, the term was taken.  So then I thought instead, “What could mean a thing that’s similar to what I wish to say?” It hit me rather hard that I am quite a shrouded man(at least that’s what they say), and though I know myself to be a happy person, thoughts inside do not display in facial way.

Indeed, they say I am a man of mystery. A crazy, wild-eyed, Samson type. The lyrics to my favorite songs are spoken softly, and in Latin. They say I am a man of focus, having always had my eye upon the ball. So swift do I so catch what flies so past, the most important thing of all. The thing, you see, is such that stranger voices call from deep inside the flowered wall. And thus can I, with humble eyes, do ‘naught but heed their call.

This thing that is denuded, and that is exuberance, might send the mountains on a hike or ship the rivers out to see. This thing that is denuded, and that is exuberance, might make the mortal laugh, against all decency. For sure, it is the thing, so joyous, fleetingly aroused, that thing joyful, forcefully espoused. So that the words and thoughts that flow, and outwardly abound, that all of them might mesh into the soaking grounds.

All of this and more to speak, and speak without a sound.

July 23, 2012

Colorado Disgrace

The Colorado massacre was a disgrace, but what was even more disheartening was the prayer vigil held for the poor souls that died. I can see it now: The youngest upstart priest, pounding and pounding his little white fist, and screaming and screaming of god’s little list. So you better be good, cause you know where the gunman is going to be sent. So you better confess and confide in your friend, and spill all your guts all before your brethren.

That’s right. A Colorado massacre made better by a fifty second infomercial selling god for free. The priests and the pulpit. Predators pulling in pupils from the comfort of their perfect holy seat. Let the dead, at least, deliver themselves away. But as for us who remain, I choke on the cheesy ceremonies.

What such stupidity might make a person pray to god and not be answered? Furthermore, what kind of fool gives praise to god for a bullet that misses a vital organ? Perhaps the old man up north had not a hand to lend to help them heal, whose hearts indeed were hit by bullets? Nay, the priests still say, “For if faggots and whores did have their way, then prepare to pay.”

Disgust. Angora. And the whores. What would god say to these heathen fiends? He’d prob’ly say to them, “Bend over, child, give freely of thine spleen.” At least, with time and after the days do pass. When reporters no longer feel compunction to dwell, then maybe such souls as poor as this may rest.

July 23, 2012

College Dreams

I always dreamed I would storm through academia and stun the world. It seems silly to have thought it, but I wanted to be the big guy on campus. I wanted to be the genius or the holy man. Sainthood eluded me by just a tiny bit. I wasn’t recognized at school, or anywhere else for that matter. But I pressed on. If people did not see just how much of a genius I was, then the fault lied with them. Stay the course. One day’ll come the big break.

But the big break never came. Winter walked on by thrice, and summer shipped out to sea, and I was left, a college drop out, and a nobody. I recognize this part of life. It’s the part where I’m supposed to wise up. Get a job. Accept reality. “Get a job, ya bum!” They shout to the unwavering dreamer. I know this part, but I’m not going to stay on script. I’d rather die than live, if living means death as a nobody.

Perhaps that’s all that people really want out of life. Recognition, you see, is a powerful drug. What is existence without recognition? It’s not existence at all. Indeed, in order to be human being, one must be, first and foremost, a human remembered. Why else do so many books be written? All these pages, countless words, and all in search of eyes and ears to see and hear. Knowledge is the magic word that makes us draw near.

So now I’m faced with other problems. I don’t know where I’ll go, or if I’ll study at college again. The university is a special place, built for special people. The rank amateur has no place in college dorms. He belongs on the streetcorner, shouting his dreams at passing cars. The people inside need pay him no heed. He’s just a looney toone. But sometimes being the village crazy man does bring some perks. The people around you may ignore you, but by ignoring you they are paying you attention.

That’s the treat, you see? The only thing worse than being talked about is not being talked about. But when people fear to speak, then silence turns to ecstasy. Such is life.

July 18, 2012

Storm

What could be important as a sweet intake of breath after summer’s rain? What cup of tea refreshes like a sudden thunderbolt? The strength of oaks recedes as mighty clouds descend. Upon the mercy of old thunder do the trees depend.

But here, I sit in idle modern comfort. Here, I listen to the whirr my deskfan makes, and only notice passingly, the sound a treebranch breaks.

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July 18, 2012

The Dilettante’s Song

The Dilettante’s Song

A Poem, by Jose Luis Nunez

A dilettante needs no man, except for he, she spies.
A dilettante needs no voice, for she has glitter eyes.
A dilettante shakes her hips in front of all the guys.

Oh, how free of frown and matted hair she seems!
Such innocence, her red moistened lips do bring!

A dilettante holds her father’s hand and not a man’s.
A dilettante dances all throughout the western lands.
A dilettante blooms, a flower amidst the desert sands.

I’d love to ask her for her hand, and kiss her tiny palm,
I’d love to marry her beneath the canopy of paradise,
and lover her long in pastures by the ocean sea.
And kiss her long in pastures, passionately.

A dilettante needs no man, except for he she spies.
A dilettante needs no lips, for all her pretty eyes.
A dilettante moves her hips, and all us fantasize.

How slender be her form and firm her lovely legs.
How slender be her form, and firm, her lovely legs.

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July 18, 2012

Walking the Old Neighborhood

A Short Story, by Joseluis Nunez

I took a walk today. A really long walk, from the innards of the city to the bowels of the suburbs. I constantly checked my shoulders, kept aware of my environment. I hugged the main roads, wary of the wild path. But no one followed me. No one held me up. I found the library, and lounged down by the door. The sun broke through the clouds, and I saw a sky as blue as any Facebook logo. Bluer than the Mac Screen. More blue than the blue screen of death.

Sweat clung to my shirt and skin. I often wiped large drops of moistened salt away from forehead. A tall woman with grey streaks in her brown hair, a purple dress and knapsack, walked up the tile steps and tried the door. It was locked. Her eyes darted away from mine, like cockroaches when the light’s turned. I waved. She smiled, but in a forced manner. The smile that shows in the mouth, but not in the eyes. Then she rounded the corner of the pavilion.

Several people drove and parked inside the lot. They stayed inside their cars, where there was air conditioning. Three minutes before the library opened, a fat woman with a light blue shirt and dirty fliplops walked up to the door. Another group, three or four children, each a year apart, and led by a single mother, shuffled in behind me. At the time I was humming softly to myself. It was an 18th century concerto I had heard on a Vivaldi cassette tape.

“Haven’t heard that song before.” One of the ladies said. I stopped, and we waited in silence. It was an uncomfortable silence, the kind that happens when your hubby uses the cell-phone after sex, and you’re left to wipe the semen off your face by yourself. No one met each other’s eyes. When the door unlocked, a blast of cool, refrigerated air melted away the unease. The cold logic gates of the 20 computers at the front burned off our discomfot. Everybody sat in front of a screen, like ducks in a row.

July 17, 2012

The Dynamism of the Avengers

A while ago I saw a movie called The Avengers. Egotistical and typical, it embodies everything that we’ve become: Content. Look back at what the movie showed. The first few minutes could have been a scene from many other movies. Stale and trite, the tale it told is ancient as the bible, or maybe Babylon.

Why shouldn’t people have a laugh? Why shouldn’t they enjoy themselves? I’ll bet the pride engendered on that screen is thought as real as cocaine on the streets. The little children look and see, and think that man is great. Of course he’s great. No doubt could cross my mind to question such as that.

It’s just, the greater men have dwindled from the ranks. Prosperity has brought a dive in self esteem. The lack of love between a father and his sons means movies such as this are needed more than past. Avenging all the souls that died to give us cynics meaning to our lives is heady work. So really then, there’s no surprise to see the popularity of such a show.

But mark my words, for if there comes a time when man has grown a pair. If Ubermenschen ever see what we’ve created on the silver screen, no doubt exists, their mockery will raise us from the dead. Mark my words indeed.

July 17, 2012

The Cynic’s Joke

I find it stunning that a serious essay on the internet will suffer such a lack of ears, but a Joke will be followed by a thousand other quips. Why is humor such an omnipresent force online? Because people lack confidence. Humor is a way to wade through nervous energy, and online when things get serious, no one really knows the proper things to say.

The largest swathe of humor on the Net is black and cynical. There exists some proper literature, but people rarely take the time to read. Black humor, however, lets us nod our heads in agreement. The cynic’s joke reminds us of our failures. It affirms our wretched misery. It tells us we don’t have to struggle. We don’t have to fight. And so, the more black humor on the web, the more we feel we don’t need to challenge ourselves.

You see, it is perfectly possible for a person to seek out higher knowledge on the internet. The world wide web is perfect for intellectuals. The only reason we decline, it seems, to look up astrophysics is an utter lack of confidence. So many people work and sleep, and nothing more they do.

Why shouldn’t they raise their hands in the air, and say, “God did it!”

I trust, however, that with an increase of confidence will come an increase in serious internet topics. As for those who this applies to. Fear is necessary to progress in skill. And trembling hands will only do you good.

July 17, 2012

The Mexican Dog

For my father, a dog in the south is a Mexican beggar. He’s fed and he’s buried, so he stays on the stoop. The picture is painted differently by people on the north side. Some dogs become so pampered they need the help of a Mexican to get them in line. And even then, Cesar changes the people. Not the dog.

I for one, would gladly let my dog inside the house. I wouldn’t, however, let her lick my face. My dogs are humble Mutts. I feed and wash them. I pet them and I love them. But they are dogs. They have no rights, because they can’t understand them.

To brush a dog’s teeth. To give it birthday presents. To have it seated at the dinner table. These actions strike me as strange. I suspect the dog just wants to be around you. These actions are fine, from that perspective. What is strange, for me at least, is when a man calls the police when a dog is run over. When a tourist gasps out at the sight of a mutt with mange.

Dogs benefit from humans, because the human rules the world. But the dog was once a wolf, and those creatures know no civilization, nor do they want it. I suppose the pity then belongs to the hound. A dog is a bastard breed between the dinner table and the dead sheep carcass. And only we are to blame.

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