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Saturday, May 28, 2011

WINE TASTING WITH SELMA

selma



Wine tasting at Selma's tonight. Thirty people turned up, most of them the regulars, plus a half dozen Cubans who are friends of Selma. They appeared not to be rich Cubans, meaning they didn't have arrogance radiating from them like cheap perfume.I see people I know and people I don't know. My time was spent on a stool at the bar out of the way of the comings and goings and excuse-mes on the floor where everybody stood around with a plate of snacks in one hand, a fork in the other, talking with mouths full like we tell kids not to do. It was a happy crowd of friendly people.



Talked with an old boy my age, Moxley, retired social studies teacher from Ohio, returned to the mountains of his childhood. A Limbaugh Republican was there talking cliches about liberals. Moxley and I talked some examining what is a Conservative and what is a Liberal. We concluded Liberals tend to be people who care about others, and Conservatives tend to be people who don't want to pay school taxes when they don't have a kid in school. Recently I've been seeing interesting changes in political beliefs around me. People are talking back to right wing maniacs when they go spouting off their Limbaugh garbage. For several years, they dominated wherever they were. During the Bush administration, people were afraid of them. The true neo-Nazis. Skinheads are the thug element. I'm glad to see there has at least been enough social change in thinking that somebody talking Limbaugh is no longer tolerated, and often called on it. 



Now that NPR has been forced to tell more Republican news and have more Republicans interviewed, it's becoming silly to listen to All Things Considered. This morning Diane Rhem called a Republican on talking Limbaugh, telling him, in effect, that Rush Limbaugh is not information. Hearing more Republicans being interviewed on ATC now, the level of intelligence has dropped considerably. The dumbing down of National Public Radio has brought it down to almost corporate broadcasting news level. It doesn't have far to go. The Republicans have had a bead on NPR since Reagan launched the first assault to put it out of business 30 years ago. It's limping along now, only because they've compromised their integrity away to stay on the air.



Yesterday at lunch with Jim Winfield, we took to talking about male (testosterone) posturing, how when you start thinking about it, you see all men do it. Look at chickens in the yard. The rooster postures every minute. The hens don't posture, they just peck other hens in their strict pecking order. Male dogs posture, walk with a sense of style like they have chrome points on the toes of their cowboy boots. Macho man. GI Joe. In a dream this morning half asleep, half awake, I saw a rooster with red back feathers, profuse dark green neck and tail feathers and wings. For a brief second I saw him falling head downward, green feathers all in motion attempting to catch the air and not getting it done. It was a second of fluttering rooster feathers in freefall. The rooster had lost his posturing. He was out of control. Even though I don't see myself as one who postures, I do. It's a testosterone thang. 



Jim is serious about his spiritual path, as I am about my own. He and I have very different paths. In both our ways, transcending the ego is the ultimate goal. He's still in his time of believing he can overcome ego by clamping down on it. I don't like to say, been there--done that, so I don't, but in my experience, that thinking is in the past and advanced me nowhere. I've finally come to a relaxed place about it. I can't transcend my ego of my own doing. Pretending I don't have ego doesn't help either. Worrying about ego just makes it worse.



I've come to a place where I don't think about it anymore. Sure, everything I do is ego. Everything I think or say is ego. Even not doing is ego. I've learned to live with it, befriend it. Instead of trying to champion it, I allow it to be. Like I do with my pets. I allow them to be who they are. This way we live together in peace. I don't have ego revolting, insisting on attention at awkward times, generally being difficult. I'm most comfortable just letting it be, like I let Caterpillar go in and out of the house at will. My ego is gentle largely, doesn't intend to hurt others---sometimes it may, though without intent. I'm not afraid to eat crow anymore. Tastes like chicken.



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