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Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Number 6


In my previous post, ten questions were examined.They were made up as I went along, much like life. There was, I found after referring to the first comment (thanks Doc!), a missing question. Not really missing but the result of nine things misnumbered as ten. Why did I unconsciously skip number 6? My mind immediately raises this, a memory of a story about a nameless man that I watched and thought about in the 1960s. Here is what I found: a montage of The Prisoner trailer combined with a hip-hop artist and a pretty dancer, elements which, in combination, cause a numerical lapse a half-century later. Lookie: 
In the late '60s, I was reading a popular magazine. Newsweek or Time --I could never tell them apart entirely or maybe it was Life or Look-- and saw an article by Patrick McGoohan. He wrote about influences that shaped our social trends and attitudes --including cold war propaganda and mass media advertising. It was a good article and I wish I could remember all of it --mainly he seemed upset about billboards. It was summertime when I read it and I was working in the hop yards even though I was asthmatic. I went from farmboy to gardener in a mere 40 years and my children somehow do not live in my shadow. I learned Patrick McGoohan was also asthmatic and had to leave his parents' farm because of it. The world lost a great farmboy when he went into acting.

There is ample evidence that we are considered cattle by advertisers, especially in the social media of this new century and its brash technology. We are always in need of help in dealing with the rather addictive web-advertisers that consider us herd animals on the hoof and comprise our corrals, our stables. And sometimes we do burst forth en masse to stampede and shout, "Our barn doors are open!" We seek liberty.

So, number 6 entered the realm of imagination, and remained there. When we ask a question that has no words, we approach the Logos --causal articulation of all things-- and freedom. When I read the wonderful comments politely overlooking or freely replying to an unuttered question, I think of the nameless character who refused to surrender his identity, his independence of mind and spirit, who shouted on the shore 'til he could shout no more --a Quixotic quest at best.

22 comments:

  1. Lead me to those non questions.....I'll stomp them to dust.

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    1. Too much effort, but there are Canadian national treasures like Gordon Lightfoot who can handle such questions with song.

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  2. Ah, Lightfoot.....listening to "In the Early Morning Rain" in 1966 as lay abed with my future wife....wondering if I should really get on the flight to SF from DC later that morning, and thence off to SE Asia......

    As to the existentialist meaning of 6, well....and why your mind decided to just pass on that one who knows? After all, what is 6? Why isn't it 42 (now that would explain it all).
    In the same vein, why did I see a 6, when there was one? When I see the number 6 do I see lemons? And what are lemons, why are they not fish??
    Oh, I have to ponder this, and wonder what those little bottles of pills are there in my bathroom, and why they want me to take them.

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    1. Worthy enigmas! But I will venture that fish would not taste as good with lemon if fish and lemons were each other.

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    2. Now I'm going to look at some pan-sized brookies in the morning, over a campfire, wonder if they are actually fish. Thanks, now I look at my truck outside, and wonder if it's really a truck. I'll be fine, don't worry..........

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    3. I won't worry, but do check the truck window and see if anything, er, peculiar is trying to climb in. You are in Montana, I believe.

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  3. I am never certain whether I find non questions soothing or frightening.

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    1. Non questions float but, since they have no real mass, don't hurt when I bump my head on them.

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  4. I am not a number! I am a free man!!!

    Love the Prisoner video. Thank you.

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    1. The Prisoner, and its theme has certainly never lost its relevance.

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  5. Advertisers and businesses both look at us as aggregates. You're a demographic to them...they examine data on how groups of people within a certain demographic behave. That's why people's outrage about privacy are kind of unfounded. No company is watching you individually--but they are looking at how many people click on a certain link or buy a certain product and what the demographics of those people are.

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    1. Agreed, outrage is unfounded but, as the Victorians discovered, it's so fun to shout "Zounds, I've been hoodwinked!"

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  6. You always capture my interest with your posts.
    I like the sounds of Gordon Lightfoot, I saw my dentist today and hr told me he's in concert in Colorado Springs in Sept, I am going to get tickets to see him ...

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    1. Lucky you! I too have always appreciated Gordon Lightfoot, perhaps because, in our later years, we both resemble Don Quixote so much.

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  7. Number 6! Memories there. Thanks for sharing that article about Patrick McGoohan. It was a strange time of history.

    Even the thought of those white balloon globs still are creepy.
    I never really understood the ending. Any explanations?

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    1. I'm not sure I can explain the ending, Susan. Haven't seen it since it aired. I remember the Beatles' song and a march down crazy hallways --but that could've been a party I was at. There was a nasty battle of wills between 6 and an indoctrinator that ended very badly. I suspect they made the episode up as they went along.

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  8. Wow, super follow-up to your last post. I have a sneaking suspicion there was method in your madness, and that you deliberately omitted #6 in the last post just so you could use that "Prisoner" trailer in this one. Perfect! And if it wasn't planned, I'm even more impressed. Then, it'd have to be the most awesome save EVER! Another fun post, dude. Hear that? That's me clapping.

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    1. Thank you, Susan. The omission was unplanned, as was the correction. I blame it on distraction caused by this big balloon that chases me home every time my mind wanders.

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  9. Good lord, how do you have so much time for this. I just checked my blog for the first time since I did that last nonsensical post, and read your comment section. You appear to actually reply, in a relevant way, to the comments. I try to do the same, sorta, but it's not easy.....if they don't use offensive language I don't pay much attention.
    As a near-seventy-year-old-retired geezer, you're sort of an inspiration, sort of. Well, not really, but I may try to limit my nap tomorrow around noon to a half-hour.
    Get out there and boost the economy, god knows I'm not going to.

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    1. Thanks! I guess it's like when Gordon Lightfoot was young, he could shift vocals an octave above plainsong melody at an instant's notice. In music, this is called a descant. I could do that with ideas and commentary. That too is called a descant. But Lightfoot and I now look like old Don Quixote and descant do it any more. The satisfaction and spirit is in trying.

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  10. It occurs to me that Number 6 having the advantages of being imaginary, which include imperviousness to heat, could be prevailed upon to pick your plums for you? There is a nice top loop for reaching and a circle to hold the fruit. One should be wary of oppressive white globes but otherwise this could a boon :-)

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    1. Excellent idea, one that I will try out immediately! I also like 6es because of their top hook --easily hung up in the closet when not in use.

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