Sunday, May 3, 2015

Jusqu'à ce que les sables mouvants avale nous

There never will be just one

It is not unusual for people to point out how similar are we .... that is to say, all of us who appear to be a part of "humankind." But, for me, I think about and wonder about our differences: Why, for instance, are some people politically liberal and others politically conservative. I am not talking simply about voting habits; I mean core beliefs so deep they are articles of faith and men go to war over them.

Why are some people instinctual killers and others innately saints?

Why do some people kill for their religion and others die for their religion?

Do you get my drift ?? Hmmmm .... the drift of time against the currents of random chance ....

Not too many years ago, the evolutionary chain displayed in text books was a relatively distinct line and the deepest questions revolved around "the missing link." Today, it is evident the resulting product we call homo sapiens sapiens emerged from a variety of "pre-modern creatures" (pre-human ??) which emerged from the mist of prehistory along differing routes of growth and evolution.

For instance, humans and chimpanzees split from a common ancestor between eight and nine million years ago and still have 98 percent of DNA in common, but evolutionary pathways did not follow a precise map and progress in a "straight line." Branches like australopithecines or kenyanthropus platyops emerged and later disappeared, but not without leaving some of their genes behind.

Without going any further into this mire before it swallows me up -- this quicksand of evolution -- my point is that while physical characteristics differ, so, too, do mental formulations due to the cocktail chemistry of DNA. We are not all the same product of the same evolutionary lines to the same degree. Those who study this professionally are not even in agreement if modern humans came from African origins or multiregional origins.

My point is that we all do not have the same genetic ancestors if we retreat back far enough beyond the dawn of measured time, which would explain why we find it so difficult -- maybe, even impossible -- to agree about this and that and to live in peace and harmony among each other.

How else does one explain why we kill each other simply because we see the world through different eyes and are "dead" certain our way is the one and the only right way?

The really, really interesting element to this is imagining where it might eventually lead to in the far distant future. There never will be just one .... one "brand" of us, I am reasonably certain .... and, I sincerely doubt the meek will ever inherit the earth.

Of course, there is always the chance a comet, such as Shoemaker-Levy 9 which struck Jupiter in 1994, will impact earth and eliminate all life forms .... or, a previously-unknown virus of pandemic proportions will surface from the bowels of the planet and destroy mankind before my theory can be proven correct.

We shall see .... at least, I will .... one way or another .... which reminds me, do you ever wonder if some memories of some ancestors might be transmitted within their DNA to you ??

Odds & ends

I broke down and bought another rifle. I have been trying to stop buying any more firearms for a while, but they are part of me as much as anything inanimate is capable of being .... beauty and the beast, in a sense ....

Deep Purple is on the radio .... classic rock station, of course.

I am on a Western "kick" at the moment, both in terms of firearms (my new/old rifle is a lever action) and films. I generally have said Clint Eastwood's film, "Unforgiven," is the No. 1 Western motion picture of all time. But, I have watched a 1950 film entitled, "Branded," three or four times during the past year. Alan Ladd and Mona Freeman are the lead actors. Anyway, without going into full review mode (old habits die hard), I will simply "proclaim" that "Branded" now has my vote for the all-time greatest Western film .... and, it has a wonderful, happy ending ....

By the way, there is another Western named, "The Unforgiven," from 1960 with Burt Lancaster, Audrey Hepburn and Audie Murphy which could be defended as the best of its genre, too. In any case, Lancaster and Hepburn are their usual sensational selves in this movie and, no doubt, this was Murphy's best-ever performance. It just goes to show that when an "average" talent is put among the "best of the best" (in any work situation), it brings out the best in the ordinarily average.

"Wheel in the Sky" by Journey is now on the radio .... I am striking it rich tonight .... uffff .... Van Morrison .... Great White and "Rock Me" .... payday .... sunny afternoons and working on a tan, with rock and a bit of brandy after dark .... soon the lakes will be warm for swimming .... all that is missing is ....

I have spent literal years of "my own time" reading and shooting rifles and handguns; now, I would rather spend the next few years listening to music and drifting away into thoughtlessness while working on a tan, although none of it seems to serve any purpose. Does anything? I think I should have spent more time playing and less time working .... I am moody this evening ....

I have to say it: I assume most of you are aware of what has been going on in Baltimore, Maryland, the past few weeks. My own reaction is that it makes me feel embarrassed to be an American, and I think the mayor and other governing officials of that city are incompetent and a disgrace to the offices they hold .... be careful not only what you wish for, but who you vote for ....


PhilipH said...

You ponder the unanswerable. Only one reason homo sapiens live: procreation.

The bit in between birth and death lasts just a few moments when set against the life time of the planet. A few use their moments to create something other than more human beings, such as music, art, technology and so on. Weaponry has progressed at an exponential rate since the cave-man's club so that we could easily wipe out millions in a matter of minutes.

Evolution, aint it amazing, eh what!

Your post is so well written and interesting I feel unqualified to comment, but I don't care, so I will. ;-)

A Cuban In London said...

Good questions and I don't think I have the answers for you but then again, that's what life's about: searching for answers.

I think that instead of genetics we ought to look at nurture and environment. I do think that when we're born we're the same, pathologies notwithstanding. We're bare and that's that. Whether you are breast-fed or bottle-fed should make no odds. We're the same. What happens after... That's the interesting bit.

On Unforgiven, all I'll say is that I will never ever forgive (did you see what I did there?) Gene Hackman for walking off with the Oscar for best supporting actor when that one should have gone to John Malkovich for In the Line of Fire, directed by... wait for it... Clint Eastwood and with Clint in the leading role. I have been a Malkovich fan (even the duds are fine) for many, many years and Unforgiven still sticks in the craw somewhat.

Loved the two videos that bookend your post today. Thanks, you made my Sunday! :-)

Greetings from London.

ANITA said...

Ilove the music!

Fram Actual said...

I think you have a very logical and realistic answer there, Philip, although it is not exactly the one I was looking for at this point in time.

Your remark about feeling "unqualified to comment" started my mind wondering about people I have met who might "see a light at the end of this tunnel." I think the closest to an genuine genius who I actually had the opportunity to engage in a discussion was Buckminster Fuller. He was elderly and I was a second-year reporter, but he was patient with me. One of his remarks in one of his books that I favor is this: "I live on Earth at present, and I don't know what I am. I know that I am not a category. I am not a thing -- a noun. I seem to be a verb, an evolutionary process -- an integral function of the universe."

So, here we are, a pair of verbs, trapped in our own space and time by evolution.

None of us, it seems to me, has any choice but to wait out this evolutionary process and see where it might lead. I wish it were not that way, because I am so curious about what exists just out of sight that it drives me crazy at times.

I am glad you stopped by and left your thoughts, Philip. Thank you.

Fram Actual said...

It seems you will have to wait around with me, then, to learn the answers, CiL. I hope you have no plans to leave the neighborhood of planet earth for the next million years or for however long it takes to resolve the questions.

I did not mention it, but the question of genetic engineering also becomes part of the landscape. Beyond the morality of it and, at least at some point, the legality of it will be issues. It is something less than fascinating to think of it in terms of a "six million dollar man," but it is absolutely intriguing to consider it in the sense of "mindset." Imagine a world in which everyone is programmed to behave in a particular pattern and within prescribed boundaries of "acceptable behavior."

John Malkovich should be standing in the winner's circle following most of his performances, I think, and, frankly, to me Gene Hackman is a master actor, but not a brilliant one. And, dare I say it, Clint Eastwood (as an actor) does not hold a candle to either one of them. I relish the character study between Malkovich and Eastwood in "In the Line of Fire," and think about what an absolutely superb film it might have been with an actor of Malkovich's talent opposite him in the Eastwood role.

Thank you, CiL. I appreciate your presence and your words.

Fram Actual said...

Yes, the music ....

Both songs/performances are super, but, in particular, I think this rendition of "Kashmir" is the best ever staged by Led Zeppelin. I saw the band once -- long, long ago -- and would love to see another concert.

Thank you, Anita. I enjoy it when you come to visit me.

victoria said...

Amigo Frank

Muchas preguntas y creo que muchas de ellas tienen su respuesta

el ser humana es ambicioso y pisa a quién sea para lograr sus propositos

El medio ambiente por unos cuantos se está desmoronando y la fauna bellisima desapareciendo


La droga cuantos muesrtos vá dejando cada año desde hace que yo conosco..hay quien la planta para igualmente hacerse ricos miestras otros mueren y asi posria seguir contestandote

Porque se venden las pieles en los mercados porque el ser humano se ve bello y por eso hay tanta drueldad animal..el marfil,,la matanza de los bebes ect

El ser humano es el mayor peligro que hay en nuestro planeta

Besitos mi niño

Gracias por compartir
Desde España


Fram Actual said...

As Macbeth spoke through the pen of William Shakespeare:

"To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time ...."

Evolution certainly creeps along at its own pace. Education can help speed the process, but when certain religions and political systems keep barbarism alive for their own purposes, all that can be done is to fight it .... but, even the leadership of the United States is unwilling to stand firm against the march of evil in the world today. It is dismal times we live in.

I agree with what you wrote here, Victoria. Greed, avarice, envy .... these human characteristics and others are harming millions of men, women and children, and are playing havoc with the environment and with the other creatures which roam the earth. The way things are going, the evolutionary process may be near its end, at least in terms of mankind.

Thank you, Victoria, for your visit and your words. I enjoy your blogs, especially the one regarding care and concern for pets and the animal kingdom in general.

Smareis said...

Então Fram, somos semelhantes, filho do mesmo Criador e tão diferente em vários aspectos. Cada um com sua forma de ser, de agir. Acho muito triste as pessoas morrer ou matar por religião. São pessoas fanáticas, doentes, precisa é de tratamentos... Se nós somos diferentes, é obvio que cada um tem sua escolha religiosa. Ninguém é obrigado a seguir a mesma religião de ninguém.

Você realmente pode ter até razão sobre um cometa atingir a terra, ou um vírus desconhecido eliminar toda forma de vida, mais acho que antes disso muitas coisas ainda irão acontecer.

Realmente Fram você é mesmo um colecionado de rifles. Sempre comprando mais um, e mais um.
Eu não assisti "Branded" me parece um excelente filme. Quanto o "Unforgiven" de Clint Eastwood eu conheço o filme. Gosto do trabalho Clint Eastwood, eu já assisti muitos filmes com ele. Acho que ele tem cara de durão, é um ator, cineasta e produtor excelente.

Triste esses acontecimentos em Baltimore. O início dos protestos em Baltimore foi exibido aqui no Brasil ao vivo pela televisão. Pelo que vi na televisão as manifestações começaram após a morte de Freddie Gray, um jovem negro de 25 anos que foi ferido enquanto estava sobre custódia policial. Acho tristes fatos assim. Aqui no Brasil também acontece casos assim envolvendo policiais.

A música é excelente.

A postagem está ótima, muito bem construída.
Até breve Fram!
Uma ótima semana pra você com muitos sorrisos e bastante alegrias.

Fram Actual said...

I do not wish to move too deeply into religious territory, Smareis, but the question of good vs. evil probably is as old as religion itself. In the Christian sense, for instance, there is the fallen angel, Satan (evil), who, in effect, is the opponent of God (good). In a religious sense, this might be considered evolution, with mankind in sway between one and the other. Mankind is on a pendulum of sorts.

In a scientific sense, evolution is a mingling of species and a progressive improvement of physical characteristics leading toward a gradually improving model of mankind, with mental and emotional elements part of the equation in the sense of development of the brain.

No matter if one takes a religious approach or a scientific approach or a combination of the two, in theory not only the physical being should be progressing in a positive manner, so, too, the intellectual presence should be moving toward a model more attune to compatibility with his neighbors no matter if their habits and beliefs are different from his own.

Actually, I could write this in an exactly opposite model, but, enough of it for now ....

Yes, I buy rifles .... and handguns, and, sometimes, shotguns. They are part of my persona. Some I like for their beauty, some for their history, but all I like for their ability to keep me and those close to me safer than we would be without them. It was before you arrived at my blog, Smareis, that I wrote a post or two about a mother and her young daughter who were murdered in a house just down the road from where I lived by a man who had escaped from a prison. It saddens me and it angers me beyond words that it was not my house the man broke into instead of the other, because then it would have been him dead and not an innocent mother and an eleven-year-old girl. Guns protect as well as destroy; it simply is a question of who has them.

I have known a very few bad cops and a few who were "cowboys," but most I truly believe are honest and do what they do because they really want to "serve and protect" their communities.

I am glad you have come here and written your thoughts, Smareis. Your remarks are wise, and cause me to think further into these matters. And, I love your compliments and your smiles .... thank you .... yes, later ....

Fram Actual said...


Smareis .... if you ever have the chance to watch "Branded" or "The Unforgiven" with Burt Lancaster and Audrey Hepburn, do it. I would bet big money you love them both, and I think they are truer to the American West of the late Nineteenth Century than are most films.

A Cuban In London said...

Totally agree with you on "In the Line of Fire". The face-off Malkovich/Eastwood is one of the most impressive encounters in cinema. At some point I was able to recite Malkovich's conversation on the phone with Clint when the latter finds out Malkovich's real identity. A lesson on acting.

Greetings from London.

Smareis said...

Obrigada pelas dicas dos filmes Fram. Não assisti "Branded" nem "The Unforgiven". Mais já anotei pra assistir quando sobrar um tempo... Sempre gostei muito de cinema Western. Adoro faroeste, esão muitos filmes que ainda gostaria de ver... Aqui tem um canal de TV fechado que toda semana exibem vários filmes de faroeste, e sempre que sobra um tempo eu estou a ver. Tenho uma lista grande dos que já assistir e recomendo porque são excelentes. Gosto muito de filme de ação."The Unforgiven" deve ser excelente mesmo. Conheço mais o menos a história do filme, mais ainda não tive a oportunidade de vê-lo. Pela história do filme acho que vou gostar muito. Esses combate de índios e brancos sempre são bem interessantes.
Ótima semana Fram!
Até breve!

Fram Actual said...

My favorite John Malkovich film is "Red -- (Retired Extremely Dangerous)," best described as a comedy, I think, with generally silly shoot 'em up action scenes and a glimpse now and then of a serious moment. Malkovich is sort of a psycho (what else ??) in it. Some of the other players are Bruce Willis, Helen Mirren and Morgan Freeman -- a first-rate cast. They are retired CIA agents who the government is out to retire on a more permanent basis. If you have not seen it, CiL, I am sure you would enjoy the film and especially the Malkovich character. And, you probably would fall out of your chair a few times from uncontrollable laughter.

There is a "Red 2" out, as well, which I have not gotten around to seeing yet, and a "Red 3" is planned -- or, maybe already out by now, too.

Thank you, CiL, for making the rounds here once again. I hope to witness you impersonating Malkovich sometime .... who can say what the future might bring ??

Fram Actual said...

I no longer keep up with new films, Smareis -- in fact, my latest interest centers round movies from the 1930s and the 1940s -- but, I once focused on them intensely and know more than a bit about the better ones.

I had not thought of it when I first mentioned "Branded" and "The Unforgiven," but both motion pictures focus on lost children finding their place in the world.

In "Branded," a baby boy was stolen and returns to his true family as young man. And, and the cowboy who returns the young man wins the love of his sister. The story is much more complicated, of course, and the young man more-or-less comes out with two families. The movie was filmed in spectacularly beautiful areas of Arizona.

In "The Unforgiven," it is revealed that a young woman is not part the family she was raised with, but actually was an Indian baby stolen by the father of the family to replace his own infant girl who had died. It really is a marvelously written story about the interaction between the young woman and her family (especially the sons) and neighbors when the truth is learned. The movie focuses on the racism which existed in the "old West" between red and white men, and the story becomes more complicated when the young woman's real brother, an Indian, leads a raid to bring her back to her tribe.

Anyway, Smareis, I am certain you would enjoy both these films and I hope you have the opportunity to watch them. Thank you, for your return visit, and, yes, see you soon ....

A Cuban In London said...

My main concern with Clinton, and I am sure that many will share it with me, is that suddenly you will have a Bush-Clinton-Bush-interregnum (Obama)-Clinton quasi-royal situation, going all the way back to '88. Not good for democracy in my view.

Good post. Thanks.

Greetings from London.

Fram Actual said...

As someone who has never understood the British adoration for and continuation of a monarchy, and who thinks the infatuation demonstrated in the United States for the British royal family is more media driven than reality, I see your point, CiL. Frankly, I would hope the U.S. race comes down to two people with names other than Clinton and Bush, but mostly not another Clinton.

If Hillary divorced Bill and submitted to a polygraph regarding Benghazi and her computer server and a few other odds and ends, it is possible I would change my opinion of her. I am being facetious, but I really do think there is a fifty-fifty chance she will be indicted on a few felony charges at some point.

Thank you, CiL, for your visit and for leaving a comment. I admire your stealth.You might consider a new career as a cat burglar or a spy or a magician.

Something special ....