1970 review of Elton John at the Troubadour – Los Angeles Times

Beyond his vocals, melodies and arrangements, there is a certain sense of the absurd about John as a performer that is reminiscent of the American rock stars of the mid-1950s.

Only someone with that wild, uninhibited view of his music would dare ask the audience to sing along — something that is almost never done anymore — or drop to his knees, like Jerry Lee Lewis used to do, in a rousing piano finale on “Burn Down the Mission.” It worked wonderfully well.

Robert Hilburn, LA Times

https://www.latimes.com/entertainment/music/la-et-ms-elton-john-1970-at-the-troubadour-hilburn-20190523-story.html

Consciousness metaphors – Desultory Quotes

“The central metaphor of these four chapters is that the mind is divided, like a rider on an elephant, and the rider’s job is to serve the elephant. The rider is our conscious reasoning—the stream of words and images of which we are fully aware. The elephant is the other 99 percent of mental processes—the ones that occur outside of awareness but that actually govern most of our behavior.”

Haidt, Jonathan. The Righteous Mind . Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

 
“That ability would seem to be at odds with early epiphenomenalism, which according to Huxley is the broad claim that consciousness is “completely without any power… as the steam-whistle which accompanies the work of a locomotive engine is without influence upon its machinery”.

Epiphenomenalism @ Wikipedia

 
“when I woke in the middle of the night, since I did not know where I was, I did not even understand in the first moment who I was; I had only, in its original simplicity, the sense of existence as it may quiver in the depths of an animal; I was more destitute than a cave dweller; but then the memory—not yet of the place where I was, but of several of those where I had lived and where I might have been—would come to me like help from on high to pull me out of the void from which I could not have got out on my own; I crossed centuries of civilization in one second, and the image confusedly glimpsed of oil lamps, then of wing-collar shirts, gradually recomposed my self’s original features.”

Proust, Marcel. Swann’s Way (In Search of Lost Time) (pp. 5-6). Penguin Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.
(alternate translation – “would come like a rope let down from heaven to draw me up out of the abyss of not-being”. See that quote @ goodreads)

 
“But let us go further. Consciousness is a much smaller part of our mental life than we are conscious of, because we cannot be conscious of what we are not conscious of. How simple that is to say; how difficult to appreciate! It is like asking a flashlight in a dark room to search around for something that does not have any light shining upon it. The flashlight, since there is light in whatever direction it turns, would have to conclude that there is light everywhere. And so consciousness can seem to pervade all mentality when actually it does not.”

Jaynes, Julian. The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind (p. 23). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Kindle Edition.

The madman – Chesterton quote

“If the madman could for an instant become careless, he would become sane. Every one who has had the misfortune to talk with people in the heart or on the edge of mental disorder, knows that their most sinister quality is a horrible clarity of detail; a connecting of one thing with another in a map more elaborate than a maze. If you argue with a madman, it is extremely probable that you will get the worst of it; for in many ways his mind moves all the quicker for not being delayed by the things that go with good judgment. He is not hampered by a sense of humour or by charity, or by the dumb certainties of experience. He is the more logical for losing certain sane affections. Indeed, the common phrase for insanity is in this respect a misleading one. The madman is not the man who has lost his reason. The madman is the man who has lost everything except his reason.”

Orthodoxy, G.K. Chesterton

Union Station, Denver

20190612_0722457291208925044505917.jpg
Union Station, Denver, CO. June 12, 2019

A union station (also known as a union terminal and, in Europe, a joint station) is a railway station at which the tracks and facilities are shared by two or more separate railway companies, allowing passengers to connect conveniently between them. The term ‘union station’ is used in North America and ‘joint station’ is used in Europe.

In the U.S., union stations are typically used by all the passenger trains serving a city, although exceptions exist. For example, in Chicago, the Illinois Central and Chicago & North Western depots coexisted with Union Station, and although most Metra commuter trains (and all Amtrak services) continue to use Union Station today, some lines depart from other terminals, such as Millennium Station.

The busiest station to be named “Union Station” is Toronto Union Station, which serves over 72 million passengers annually.

wikipedia

List of Union Stations

Up There and Down Here / The Prince of Persia

There’s also a spatial dualism. There’s a dualism of up there and down here, and so you have things that go on on the earth are simply shadows of what’s going on actually in the heavens. It’s like every country, according to Daniel, has its own prince, by that he means some kind of angelic being. The Prince of Persia refers in Daniel to some huge angelic super human being who actually rules Persia. The Prince of Judah, the angel of Judah tends to be Michael or some other angel that you’ve probably heard of, like Raphael. Each of the nations has its own angel so you can imagine sort of that Russia has its angel, and so then America has its angel, and if Russia and America were to go to war this would be actually simply an earthly shadow type reflection of the true reality which would be going on as the angel of Russia was battling the angel of America in heaven. So everything that goes on in our cosmos is simply a mirror image of these battles that are going on the heavens. So that’s another dualism of space.

Introduction to the New Testament History and Literature
RLST 152 – Lecture 23 – Apocalyptic and Resistance
Dale B. Martin

High cost of medication in the US, compared with other countries.

Dr. Robert Grant developed a treatment — a daily pill known as pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP — that could stop the AIDS crisis. We look at why that hasn’t happened.

NY Times Daily podcast

Referring to Truvada, a drug used to reduce the transmission of HIV, Ms Ocasio-Cortez, pointed out that while it cost almost $2,000 in the US, it was available for just $8 in places such as Australia. In South Africa, it costs just $6.

 

Data collection is difficult. Accurately counting homeless people.

To count the unhoused and unsheltered population—the shelters are usually full to bursting with waitlists hundreds or a thousand names long—county health or human services agencies, or nonprofits to which the task is contracted out, often resort to the simplest method of enumeration known, the one you learn in kindergarten: They (or citizen volunteers, mostly) go out with flashlights, clipboards and pencils, and literally count heads, or curled-up street sleepers, or RVs, or tents.

How many people an office manager or sales rep guesses are sleeping in an RV or a tent they’re peering at in the semi-dark becomes data. Whether the volunteer presumes two or four is up to them—I can tell you this, for I have done it twice, in 2009 and 2017, and I don’t believe my guessing skills improved much—and thus wholly arbitrary, a snap decision that can result in a variance of 100 percent. Or more. Is that just some old car, or an old car someone lives in? Is that RV the glamping vehicle for an Instagram influencer or some eccentric Burner type, or does it house the family of four who couldn’t afford the landlord’s latest offer? You don’t know and you can’t know. Yet, this is the data the federal government uses, and we arrive at neat numbers like, “500,000 homeless people in America, 8,011 homeless people in San Francisco.”

How California’s Homeless Crisis Grew Obscenely Out of Control, Chris Roberts, Observer.com

Ranked choice voting

A ranked-choice voting system (RCV) is an electoral system in which voters rank candidates by preference on their ballots. If a candidate wins a majority of first-preference votes, he or she is declared the winner. If no candidate wins a majority of first-preference votes, the candidate with the fewest first-preference votes is eliminated. First-preference votes cast for the failed candidate are eliminated, lifting the second-preference choices indicated on those ballots. A new tally is conducted to determine whether any candidate has won a majority of the adjusted votes. The process is repeated until a candidate wins an outright majority. This system is sometimes referred to as an instant runoff voting system.

https://ballotpedia.org/Ranked-choice_voting_(RCV)

Fernando Pessoa visits a barbershop and reflects. Book of Disquiet quote.

“I went into the barbershop as usual, with the pleasant sensation of entering a familiar place, easily and naturally. New things are distressing to my sensibility; I’m at ease only in places where I’ve already been.

After I’d sat down in the chair, I happened to ask the young barber, occupied in fastening a clean, cool cloth around my neck, about his older colleague from the chair to the right, a spry fellow who’d been sick. I didn’t ask this because I’d felt obliged to ask something; it was the place and my memory that sparked the question. ‘He passed away yesterday,’ flatly answered the barber’s voice behind me and the linen cloth as his fingers withdrew from the final tuck of the cloth in between my shirt collar and my neck. The whole of my irrational good mood abruptly died, like the eternally missing barber from the adjacent chair. A chill swept over all my thoughts. I said nothing.

Nostalgia! I even feel it for people and things that were nothing to me, because time’s fleeing is for me an anguish, and life’s mystery is a torture. Faces I habitually see on my habitual streets – if I stop seeing them I become sad. And they were nothing to me, except perhaps the symbol of all life.

The nondescript old man with dirty gaiters who often crossed my path at nine-thirty in the morning… The crippled seller of lottery tickets who would pester me in vain… The round and ruddy old man smoking a cigar at the door of the tobacco shop… The pale tobacco shop owner… What has happened to them all, who because I regularly saw them were a part of my life? Tomorrow I too will vanish from the Rua da Prata, the Rua dos Douradores, the Rua dos Fanqueiros. Tomorrow I too – I this soul that feels and thinks, this universe I am for myself – yes, tomorrow I too will be the one who no longer walks these streets, whom others will vaguely evoke with a ‘What’s become of him?’ And everything I’ve done, everything I’ve felt and everything I’ve lived will amount merely to one less passer-by on the everyday streets of some city or other.”

Pessoa, Fernando. The Book of Disquiet (Penguin Modern Classics) .

Acting – Two Approaches

“We were, and indeed are, very different actors and people. I will always be an active actor, and John a passive one. I’m a peripheral player who goes out to the character, whereas he stays in the center, finds something in the part that will suit him, then pulls it in towards himself.”

Olivier, contrasting himself with John Gielgud. On Acting, Laurence Olivier.

What became so popular at your school that the teachers had to ban it?

Rulers. Year 10 in HS for whatever reason someone decided to smack a guy across the head with a ruler. Then everyone went out and bought a ruler.

Suddenly everyone was a knight with a sword. Staff kept confiscating them but rulers are cheap so kids just went out and bought them by the handful.

They ended up banning rulers. At a school. The kids who were taking geometry that year and needed them had to be assigned rulers at the beginning of class and then turn them back in.

If you rub the metal edge of a ruler against the sole of your shoe really fast back and forth it gets hot enough to seriously burn someone and leave a scar.

A kid did that to me back in 8th grade. Hurt like hell and left a mark that took a decade to fade. I was pissed!

When I was in elementary a girl took one of those rulers with the raised rubber grip on the flat side and rubbed it up and down in the middle of her forehead really fast. Ended up leaving a scar at least until end of highschool. None of us ever understood why she did that.

Edit: thank you, kind stranger, for the gold. I’m very happy this poor girls misfortune could get me a Reddit award. Stay strong, she-who-shall-not-be-named.

Kids did that with erasers on the back of their hands at my middle school! They’d rub until they had an open wound and they’d just keep it up so that it never healed. School couldn’t ban erasers, but kids with open wounds on the back of their hands got in trouble. And this wasn’t the emo crowd doing this, the most popular kids in school started the trend. I thought it was stupid in middle school, and now as an adult I’m honestly concerned about the girls who started the trend…

I had a girlfriend in high school do took an eraser and rubbed my initials into her arm when we broke up. I think that only reinforced the fact that I made a good decision to break things off.

reddit