There’s always something to howl about

It’s Sunday, and I’ll be damned if I ain’t thankful!

Jimmy Klein and young Gavin M. George got my Sunday started right. I love Sunday despite the fact that I don’t believe anything I don’t have to, and most especially do I love to start my Sunday with the Sun God of my own idolatry: The blinding brilliance of a fully-conscious human smile. The world abounds in wonders of the mind, and all we can remark on are the travesties of mindlessness.

Me, too, make no doubt, and yet I am thankful this Sunday to President Barack Obama, the Reverends Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton, the Black Panther Party, the mainstream media and the entire TwitBook Mafia. I have never in my lifetime seen a racist lynch mob in action, and I am grateful to all the participants for showing me what menacing racial prejudice — judging by race in advance of determining the facts — looks like. If you are worrying about the fate of poor George Zimmerman — whose race, apparently, is white-enough-godammit! — console yourself: He can always avail himself of gay marriage. In the game of identity politics, gay men — born-that-way-godammit! — trump every other card. And that’s a consummation we all might as well be thankful for.

So I guess I should be thankful for Bill Maher, who argues that snarky-on-wry is about all any of us can bring to the show, most days. And I think he and I both should be grateful that no one expects us to be funny like South Park is funny. A demand for actual excellence could put just about anyone into another line of work.

And totally snarklessly, I am 1,500 words into what I hope will turn out to be the most practically useful philosophical essay I will ever write. When I’m done, will anyone read it, all the way through, all the way to the end? I will, again and again over the years, if I get it right. I don’t know that I have improved any life but my own. But I know that what my life is now is a direct consequence of the things I have written in the past. You and I get to listen to Gavin M. George play, and to smile in full consciousness of the meaning of his own fully-conscious smile. But he gets to live that music as he is playing it, and I get to live the philosophy I write by writing the philosophy I live. This is what integrity means to me: Each discrete thing is different in its way, but everything is all one thing, each entity or action or attribute or effect itself an expression of the same one thing. I like it that the world aligns that way. It would, anyway, of course, and, accordingly, it could never be possible for any of us to live what Gavin is living without doing what he is doing, but it is a thing of ineffable wonder — to me, at least — that the Good is the True is the Beautiful. Whatever you get from my writing, if anything, I’m getting everything I hoped for and more. You cannot fathom the depths of my gratitude for the gift of mind. I make it my business to live up to it in every way I can.

And: I am deeply grateful to see Mad Men return tonight. I’ve got the overs on a new pregnancy — not Joan, someone we haven’t known about yet. And I’ve got the unders on Bert Cooper coming back to work. I think Robert Morse has been fantastic, the cap on his career. But I’m betting against him.

And now I think it’s time to be thankful for Sunday Dinner. I part with this thought: Say Grace. There’s never enough to go around.


3 Comments so far

  1. Greg Swann March 25th, 2012 8:28 pm

    Zero for two, but we got to see a huge pair of testicles on TV. How can I complain? Well, there was 124 minutes of show hanging from 73 minutes of story, but I got a lot of reading done. Outta gas…?

  2. Lisa Gray April 7th, 2012 5:21 am

    I was excited for the return of Mad Men as well, but the premiere was definitely less than satisfying. I have to agree that Robert Morse has been at his absolute best.

  3. […] eight days and edited and published it in seven more. You can see me dipping my quill into the ink here. But I’ve been preparing to write this one book since I was nineteen years old. I think […]