Monday, May 23, 2016

Signal Tulane

What is all this? Attempt to analyze or witness? Make sense of chaos? People expect that anyone who exhaustively studies something becomes its master. Expert? Another drip under pressure filling oceans of ignorance. Many PhDs are as dumb as doorposts, though they are presumably smarter than rabble. Genius resides in humankind collectively: buyers, doers, expediters, explorers, sellers, sweet street sweepers every spring, thinkers. Makes you wonder about education, although boundaries do expand with specialization. Some things don’t warrant profound study, or vary so much what once could be affirmed later can’t. Some are studied too little, which explains why radical right ever gains a foothold. Psychologists measure intelligence as one’s ability to adapt to changes, not knowledge amassed and readily remembered. It’s about applying not parroting, less theorizing possibilities than using hands and minds.

Lack of scrutiny fosters arrogance. This applies to everyone, including Labann, who, unlike many, does invite criticism. Yet readers don’t avail themselves of a comeback opening. Shave and a haircut…? Crickets! Does silence repudiate or validate viewpoints? Seems only the dead have cred. Have read too many books to count, so won’t ever be obligated to read yours after writing one that you didn’t read, either. Producing one’s own is a valid excuse to ignore universe, if ever a recluse remains averse, though society survives on quid pro quo, rules fostering fairness, and sensible trading awareness.

Decency can never be guaranteed. Reagan deregulated banks, financial institutions, and insurance houses, which begat huge swindles for which nobody was indicted. Wall Street traders took out policies to insure against downturns, so someone else - depositors, subsequent premium payers, and taxpayers - absorbed losses, as typical of pyramid marketing rackets. Disproportionate deals engender disasters. But Reagan was only an actor playing POTUS, a pawn for a shadow regime with an agenda of greed. They acted with impunity by diverting spotlight away from themselves and onto their puppet. To this day voters have no idea who they are, never mind how many trillions they’ve stolen, a shameless fraud that precipitated global recession. Archived history. Move on, bossy Labann. Nothing to see. Recede into dim innuendo and dusky past, but not effects, which persist and visit localities, such as New Orleans, butt of Bush’s betrayal following Hurricane Katrina, undeniably the two greatest natural catastrophes to befall America.

Bikeeasy.org accuses goons with baseball bats and paintball guns of assaulting Tulane students and other users of bike lanes on Esplanade and nearby avenues. “Our city has a long, complex history of economic inequality, racial injustice, and corrupt practices that benefit the few at the expense of the many… we believe bicycling can play a positive role in addressing… But bicycling can only play this role if we don’t leave anyone behind.” Hundreds of legal guns are stolen there annually, many being used in crimes. Last year Forbes contributor John Ebersole listed higher education issues including school climate and student safety smelling of impractical suggestions and specious questions. Rather indict corporate policies and educational systems, neither of which is willing to assume responsibility for employee training. Millions of jobs go unfulfilled because brainless managers create countless barriers to hiring. Of occupations, all 95% of them really require is an agile mind and honest enthusiasm, things most educators seem determined to eradicate. Get constant come-ons to handle international receiving/shipping urgencies designed to bilk milk money. How inclined you feel to sortie forth depends upon many concerns, none more weighty than trust in community.

Big Easy born Wynton Marsalis conjectured, “Sustained intensity equals ecstasy.” Nice try. Depends entirely upon what sensations you'll endure. Could mean tortures of serving Laodiceans, screaming sound, water boarding, or whip lashing, zero pleasure to anyone but sadomasochists and those who enjoy schadenfreude of your misery. More saddle time might make you a better person, but, rather than enlightened souls, mostly meet conservative scumbags and sanctimonious scoundrels who instead of discussing bikes prefer talking down to you. Americans readily trade conscience for convenience, something a bicyclist's groan can’t overcome alone.

Nearly through Bike Month, haven’t joined one group ride, though repeatedly tried. Even organized own; nobody showed. Few ever accept invitations from strangers sent in many forms (calendar posts, email blitzes, handbills, paid ads, pole posters), none of which work. Some are so put off by inherent message they delete or remove. Besides barely acceptable Facebook and despised Twitter, there are "meet-ups" and other social media, but it's still hard to find people who want to exchange ideas or socialize nicely, prerequisites to more involved relationships. Negativity mounts. Acquaintance, a crucial baseline for being human, precedes collaborator, friend, lover, spouse and “X”, in that order of commitment, intensity, and possibly regret on every level. For most, where they are on this continuum occupies entire life. Anything more cerebral can’t be withstood. Among those invited expected at least some whose charity rides I arrowed, sagged, or somehow assisted to have attended or declined. No longer feel inclined to reciprocate. Amassing a groundswell into a grassroots movement has never been harder in a society conditioned to being physically alone and totally vulnerable although virtually connected as never before.

Bikes, forced off roads in 1970’s, resumed belonging in 1990, when laws were enacted nationwide to include them in planning. Yet states still haven’t implemented enabling improvements. Begin to see route sign and stripes on streets, but egregious lapses may be impossible to mend. Roads nibbled landscape alongside to get ever wider, which resulted in gutters with grates, 2 lanes in each direction, and trouble for bicyclists trying to cross over. This signals disrespect for a deselected form. Activists and cranks with a passion for pedaling pointed the way and pushed through demands. Public soon forgets them due to new media and nonprofit spin. Why care anymore? What are you fighting for? Share roads with whom? Often regret working on behalf of ungrateful beneficiaries. Then cynically remind self that controversies can offer cheap entertainment.

Lower frequencies literally move slower. Obsession with them signifies an attempt to arrest input inundation and inevitable race to your grave. Insects buzz by on their one-month mission to reproduce and shortly thereafter die. Likewise motorists, whose fatalities bicyclists study at their dawdling tempo. Motoring was once believed the best way to intensify motility, but increasingly isolated drivers from landscape and earners from security. Turns out, bicycling does it better. One ought to make the most of what's granted, be it long or short. How? Make small plans and pull them off. Organize own groups. Or you could crash and learn lessons. Observations attend every awake moment, though solid ideas about them don’t easily coalesce. Yet a brain bounces around many you’ve grown up with until something occurs, a revelation, that suddenly seems significant enough to record. But has the moment irrevocably passed?

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