Monday, May 3, 2021

Mark Twain's Pre-Twitter Indictment of the Justice System Applies Even More Today


Mark Twain's aversion to describing anything in simple terms seems to have been so severe one might be forgiven for believing the simple act of writing a trite phrase on a piece of paper would cause him to break out in hives.

Consider this line from "Roughing It", a 500-page account of his time in the American west during the mid-nineteenth-century Gold Rush:

The men who murdered Virginia's original twenty-six cemetery-occupants were never punished."

Cemetery occupants?! If I ever find opportunity to use a phrase of Twain's in conversation I totally want it to be that one. I may get my teeth knocked out for it but I'm absolutely sure it will be worth it.

Sunday, March 21, 2021

Japanese Shinto Hits the Maga Nail on the Head

This was going to be a short, snarky post
about a passage from a book I just read.

But some ideas, once explored,
can not be justly ignored.

Shinto, Japan’s ancient indigenous religion, is wrapped in mystery. There are no sacred scriptures or writings. There exists no central authority. There is little, if any, evidence of the origins of their rituals and beliefs. No one knows for sure how many kami there are in the Shinto pantheon; gods inhabit all manner of Nature, from rocks and trees to mountains and oceans. The Shinto priests recite age-old prayers in a language barely resembling Japanese. I don't think they even know what they are saying.