Sunday, August 8, 2010
So I guess you fellers are wonderin' why ol' Moondog placed asterisks in the mid section of one of Dudeism's holy passwords. Well, this is how it happened...
The usual suspects and I were trying to figure out what not to do next at the Duder the other day when this sympatico looking young lady saunters in, sits down at the bar and orders a double White Russian. Well, that got our attention, and as Louise sprang into action to mix up the requested beverage, this young lady flashes a bright smile all around, reaches into her bag and pulls out a book which she slides down the bar to me. The title of the book and the feller's name who wrote it rang a bell... F**k It: The Ultimate Spiritual Way by John C. Parkin. I inspected the tome, reminded myself that I had seen it before, thought it useful at the time, then said "fuck it" before taking proper note of its importance.
At this point...and I acknowledge the fortuitous intervention of our double White Russian drinking lady dude...I think it only fitting to pass the info regarding the book's provenance along to fellow travelers who may not be aware of it or its slow steppin' author, who introduces his deep and profound take on things in this short video...
Not much more to report at this stage of the game...don't want to clutter up such a refined message with a lot of unnecessary strands and convolutions. I'll pass along more details about the double White Russian drinking lady philosopher dude and her inneresting concepts and pronouncements at a later date...
Saturday, July 3, 2010
Well...what can I say? Haven't been DOING...make that writing...much lately...a condition of which I am reminded repeatedly by my compatriots at the Duder. Especially Louise as she mixes one after another...
Its one of those crazy, lazy, hazy days...nights...of summer hereabouts. 'Round Midnight on the sound system...the usual diehards at the bar...Letterman on the TV above the bar...sound turned off...
(Please let play while you read the rest of the piece.)
Ron wanders in and sits down next to me as Louise pushes a Caucasian across the bar to him. He looks around the room then over at me.
"What's doin' Moondog?
"Well not much Ron...what would you have us DO? Are you aware of some situation that needs to be attended to that we here at the bar have somehow missed?"
"Little snarky Moondog? Too much pressure to demonstrate a deep and profound chill all the time?"
I make a show of exuding a huffy demeanor.
"Yeah...right. Do I look like I am succumbing to the unrelenting coercion coming from..."
Louise slides another one over then continues.
"...You know what the bumper sticker says...'What would Ernest Tubb have done?'..."
"I expect Ernest would have said, 'If it ain't broke, don't fix it'...sort of like the way things are around here most of the time...take now..."
Ron grins at my hackneyed axiom before he speaks.
"Yeah...guess if you're not DOING something you're just not worth a shit...huh?"
Someone down the bar chimes in.
Louise fumbles under the bar and finally pulls out two wrinkled rolls of paper which she ceremoniously unrolls and holds up.
"Guess I'm going to have to put this back up...or maybe this..."
I genuinely relax as the obvious sinks in...as it always does eventually (usually).
"Yeah...good old Lao Tzu...and the good old Dude too, man. Remember The Dude! We should make up a bumper sticker that says that. That's all you gotta do, man...Remember The Dude...when things get really shitty...Remember The Dude. When things are great...Remember the Dude. Why that's what this whole thing we're doing here is all about, man. Not to get preachy on you, man...but..."
Everyone in the bar looks at me in silence for a long moment...then the normal buzz resumes.
I give some thought as to why I was a little out of sorts earlier. Too much conversation, too much thought...too much dissection sometimes of the whole philosophico, religio, psycologico, analytico...hey, man...you know what I'm trying to say. Too many strands and what-have-yous crisscrossing that way and this...too many idiotic questions about the meaning of it all...too much endless rationale for espousals regarding lazy wisdom, hazy wisdom, the implications of the fathomless chill, etc., etc., etc...
...when all anybody really needs to do is Remember the Dude!...and the K.I.S.S. principle...man...
The Dude: Yeah, well. The Dude abides.
The Stranger: The Dude abides. I don't know about you but I take comfort in that. It's good knowin' he's out there. The Dude. Takin' 'er easy for all us sinners. Shoosh. I sure hope he makes the finals.
Saturday, May 29, 2010
I'm at the Ol' Duder Bar, as usual...not much doing at the Duder this afternoon...even lazier than "normal", if that's possible. Louise slides another one across the bar...then comes the REmark that I know is way past due.
"Boy...you're sure the guy to be writing about lazy wisdom lately Moondog. Do you claim to be getting wiser as you get lazier?"
I just look up at her and grin.
"You gotta get hip to the subtleties of Lazy Wisdom Practice Louise...chill Lou. Exude laziness until a palpable atmosphere...a deep silent pool...of laziness appears...and wisdom will show up to backstroke in it's depths..."
"Your cockeyed take on 'build it and they will come', huh?"
"The irresistible vortex of Dudely Wisdom..."
This street performer in a court jester's costume roams in and looks around. He bows with a sweep of his arms and introduces himself.
"Good day my good people...Quodudeian at your service! May I offer a few edifying quotations from a selection showcasing orators much wiser than myself in barter for a delicious libation?"
Louise is flabbergasted.
"Well I'll be damned Moondog...here we go again..."
"Why endure the drudgery of all that reading and thinking and such to garner the sagacity of the ages when all you have to do is sit back and let yourself go...let enlightenment wash over you...a veritable river of erudition from my silver tongue..."
"See Louise. What could be lazier...huh? Just sit back and take in a string of one liners from our stand-up philosopher here. What'll it be Quodudeian?"
"Shot and a beer. Any requests?"
Louise shoves a double shot of Jack and an oat soda across the bar to the jester. He downs the shot then take a long pull on the beer.
"You pick 'em Mr. Q. Better have some hot stuff...playing to a strange and jaded crowd here."
Several other Duder regulars from the other end of the bar and the pool table move closer and wait expectantly for the first wise utterance.
Quodudeian speaks. The tongue is indeed silver...mesmerizing...
"After all...all he did was string together a lot of old, well known quotations. H.L. Mencken said that about William Shakespeare.."
He pauses. Deadly silence. He continues.
"O.K. then...just a reminder...I tell you we are here on earth to fart around, and don't let anybody tell you different."
There is a brief pause...then the audience unclogs as the well known Vonnegut-ism sinks in. Everybody cheers. Quodudeian relaxes and begins to move and snap his fingers to jazz that only he can hear. Louise picks of the bottle of Jack.
"Does the Pope shit in the woods? The Dude"
The crowd cheers louder. Quodudeian continues...bebopping...pausing for just the right amount of time between quotes.
"Think off-center. George Carlin"
"He who trains his tongue to quote the learned sages, will be known far and wide as a smart ass. Howard Kandel"
Lots of applause to that one.
"The taste for quotations...and for the juxtaposition of incongruous quotations...is a Surrealist taste. Susan Sontag"
"Time is bunk. Douglas Adams"
“Life is the art of drawing without an eraser. John W. Gardner"
"Buy the ticket take the Ride. Hunter Thompson"
"Walter, he peed on my rug! The Dude"
More wild applause.
"Basically my wife was immature. I'd be at home in the bath and she'd come in and sink my boats. Woody Allen"
"I don't say we all ought to misbehave, but we ought to look as if we could. Orson Welles"
More people arrive. The word is out. Quodudeian knocks back Jack after Jack. Jumps up on the bar.
"Always do whatever's next. George Carlin"
"A good traveller is one who does not know the destination, and a perfect traveller does not know where he came from. Lin Yutang"
"Sacred cows make the best hamburger. Mark Twain"
"Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler. Albert Einstein"
“There is a theory which states that if ever for any reason anyone discovers what exactly the Universe is for and why it is here it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable. There is another that states that this has already happened.
"I read somewhere that 77 per cent of all the mentally ill live in poverty. Actually, I'm more intrigued by the 23 per cent who are apparently doing quite well for themselves.
The crowd bravos and begins to chant...
Louise looks over at me and winks as Quodudeian motions for the customers to quiet down.
"To whom it may concern: It is springtime. It is late afternoon. Kurt the Man said that."
He pauses, then continues...
"And now...the last words of Robert Anton Wilson...KEEP THE LASAGNA FLYING!"
There is a long silence...then someone from the audience yells out...
"Hey, careful, man, there's a beverage here! The Dude"
...cheers and applause. Someone in the back answers...
"Who gives a shit about the fucking marmot! The Dude"
...more applause...and then...
"Is this a... what day is this? The Dude"
"Mind if I do a J? The Dude"
Whistles and hooting...as the late spring afternoon softly turns into evening...
“Not if anything to say about it I have. Yoda"
“I had final cut, they wanted me to re-edit it, I refused. Dennis Hopper”
Sunday, April 18, 2010
I am sitting at the bar sipping a Caucasian and trying to concentrate on the laptop. Louise, the bartender, mixes one for herself eyes me with dudely amusement.
"Still trying to come up with something to write about the supposium on lazy wisdom Moondog?"
"Supposium? What the fuck is a supposium Louise?"
"You say symposium...I say supposium. Supposing...what iffing...is what's been going on around here lately with all this deep philosophizing about your Lazy Wisdom...capital 'l' capital 'w'. Why don't you just stop thinking about it and let stuff happen...then sit back and dig it as it goes down...Moondog? That's my way of not doing lazy wisdom...little 'l' little 'w'."
Finally, my fingers begin to type and words begin to appear on the screen.
In the last dispatch from these regions I promised to fill everybody in on the doings and insights of the Duder Bar supposium on lazy wisdom, but I got distracted and didn't get very far...so here we go again...
As usual, just as I am about to elucidate a significant new strand and what have you, something happens...
This Armani suited stock broker looking guy glides through the door snapping his fingers and bobbing his head to music only he can hear. Everyone at the bar looks at him as he slowly intones...
"Dude be slow steppin', mang...threw away my 3G, multi-tasking smart phone, mang...don't want to talk to you while I'm downloading and gaming and trading at the same time no more, bub...smashed that fucking thing, Maurice..."
He slowly spins and, in a leisurely fashion, syncopates back out into the street.
I type some more...
Unbelievable! Louise was right...I'll get into what Louise said later. Synchronicity strikes again! Is Carl Jung hanging out around here somewhere? Slow dancing at high noon...stop thinking about it and lazy wisdom just dances through the door...
Here comes Nancy walking down the bar from the back carrying a brown paper bag.
"Is this yours? Found it in the back booth where you were 'entertaining' last night."
She hands me the bag. I have never seen it before. I reach inside and pull out a book. Look at it in rapt wonder. Everybody at the bar cranes their neck to see.
Doing Nothing: A History of Loafers,Loungers, Slackers and Bums in America
By Tom Lutz
An advertising flier for the book for the book flutters out of the bag onto the floor. I pick it up and read it out loud to the congregation.
"Lutz eases readers into this sparkling cultural history of stylish American torpor with an anecdote about his 18-year-old son, Cody, moving into his house and bivouacking on the couch—perhaps indefinitely. Lutz himself spent a decade before college "wandering here and abroad," so his intense anger at Cody surprised him—and inspired him to write this book about the crashing fault lines between Anglo-America's vaunted Calvinist work ethic and its skulking, shrugging love of idling. An English professor who admits to being personally caught between these warring impulses, Lutz (Crying) has a gimlet eye for the ironies of modern loafing: that the "flaming youth" of the 1920s were intensely industrious; that our most celebrated slackers (Jack Kerouac, Richard Linklater) have been closet workaholics; that our most outspoken Puritans (Benjamin Franklin, George W. Bush) have been notorious layabouts. Lutz's diligent research on a range of lazy and slovenly subjects, from French flâneurs to New York bohos, ultimately leads him to side with the bums. Flying in the face of yuppie values and critics of the welfare state, his "slacker ethic" emerges over the course of this history as both a necessary corrective to—and an inevitable outgrowth of—the 80-hour work week."
"What the fuck!"
Louise is pointing up at the TV above the bar. She turns up the volume as everyone present does a double take in unison then stares at the TV.
Just as Bing and his motley crue are winding up their observations on the nature of things, John Lennon's voice rings out from somewhere down the bar...
"Life is what happens when you're busy making other plans...Life is what happens when you're busy making other plans..."
It is the ringtone on somebody's cell phone. Sheepishly, Doris, a newcomer to the Duder, answers her phone and hurries to the back of the bar so as not to disturb the proceedings at hand.
Now...at this juncture I think it only fitting to take a step back so as to be able to see the forest and not get lost in the trees...as they say. Obviously, The Duder Bar Supposium on Lazy Wisdom seems to be composing itself. The old Trickster is cracking the cosmic joke once again...reminding me who's who and what's what...and I might as well fuggetaboutit as far as trying to theorize and expound upon those matters "myself". The universe is doing me, I am clearly not doing it...life is living me...I'm not...well shush...you get the picture. During the past brief bit of time here at the humble ol' Duder Bar the DUDE himself is playfully wagging his finger at us sinners and saying...
"Chill...there's NOTHING to do...there's nothing you CAN do, really...when you take a giant step back and have a good look at the whole durn thing. Let go dudes! Chill...deeply...lazy wisdom... abide man..."
Thursday, April 1, 2010
We Dudeists here at the old Duder Bar have been incommunicado for awhile because of all the mulling about and intense ruminating that has gone into our latest project, a small booklet entitled LAZY WISDOM: PROCRASTINATION AS SPIRITUAL PRACTICE, but I'm going to wait to elaborate further on that until a little later on. First, I want to bring to light a couple of fellers you may have heard about but, if not, will probably get a kick out of...natural born Dudeists both, and both probably sympathetic with our current frenzied quest for the key to profound procrastination.
The first, Wes “Scoop” Nisker, is a writer, radio personality, Buddhist meditation teacher and stand-up philosopher who, years ago, came up with the challenge, "If you don't like the news go out and make some of you own." Interesting concept. Anyhow among the books old "Scoop" is notorious for are CRAZY WISDOM, THE ESSENTIAL CRAZY WISDOM, and, most recently, CRAZY WISDOM SAVES THE WORLD AGAIN! Here's a quote from this last tome that speaks directly to our current cogitations as well as to the Dudeist modus operandi in general.
“If I were in the department of wisdom, I would call for an immediate moratorium on progress, to last at least a half-century. We had a whole lot of progress in the last couple of centuries, and although it brought us pain-killing drugs, space telescopes, and Velcro®, it appears we can no longer keep up with our own ingenuity. We now race madly around in our individual boxes of steel, chasing after satisfaction, and in the process we are throwing the atmosphere out of whack by burning up two or three geological epochs worth of the sun’s stored energy in one great choking bonfire of the vanities. We have spent the better part of our genius figuring out new ways to blow each other up or learning how to go faster, and in our fear and haste we forgot about who we are and where we are going. We need to relax, deeply, and let our hearts and minds catch up with out tool-making ability, which ha gotten way “out of hand.” What we need is a century of less doing and more “being.” The next revolution is a big slowdown."
“I also have some broad suggestions on how we might help heal our sick civilization and the ailing planet, based on the understanding of crazy wisdom, a long-running tradition of tricksters, saints, philosophers, self-proclaimed fools, and other disreputable characters, Rather than practical solutions, crazy wisdom offers a stance, an attitude to carry us as we proceed through these ominous days."
Just think of The Dude as a Crazy Wisdom/Lazy Wisdom master and things begin to fall...some sooner...some later...into place.
The other feller I want to call your attention to, name of Thaddeus Golas, wrote a 79 page book back in the late 60's called THE LAZY MAN'S GUIDE TO ENLIGHTENMENT which was an instant hit at that time. Here's what Amazon has to say...
"Originally published by the author in 1972, the underground classic Lazy Man's Guide to Enlightenment teaches how to improve the quality of life, to feel good, and to determine what's real."
And from an Amazon reviewer...
"I've never been interested in having a guru, and Thaddeus Golas was never interested in being one. He wasn't looking for converts, followers, or even agreement, and I've always felt free to disagree with the way he makes this or that point. So this book has long been perfectly suited to me and my somewhat iconoclastic/refractory temperament."
"This little book is one of a very small handful that I regard as the absolute cream of 'hippie spirituality'. Stephen Gaskin's 'This Season's People' is that literature's Diamond Sutra and Paul Williams's 'Das Energi' is its Tao Te Ching. Golas's slim volume comes very close to Gaskin's in its adamantine wisdom and so ranks as a close second in diamond-sutrahood, but I think of it as something like the Dhammapada."
"Its message is so easy to put across that, technically, you already know everything it says. The heart of the matter is: relax; just love as much as you can from wherever you are. When you come right down to it, you're already 'enlightened' and you don't have anything to prove."
"But somehow, the 'way' Golas puts this message (and the bit about "love as much as you can" is a direct quotation) has some major mojo in it, enough to knock your mind loose from your brain."
If you're interested you can read the entire book online HERE. Or...if you're even lazier...just keep reading...
A selection of reminders from the text (abbreviated):
Whether I am conscious of it or not, I am one with the cause of all that exists.
Enlightenment doesn't care how you get there.
Whatever you are doing, love yourself for doing it.
There is nothing you need to do first in order to be enlightened.
This, too, can be experienced with a completely expanded awareness.
I wouldn't deny this experience to the One Mind.
And on abiding...maybe...
When you learn to love hell, you will be in heaven.
And so fellow pilgrims, enough of homage...time to move on down the line toward LAZY WISDOM: PROCRASTINATION AS SPIRITUAL PRACTICE...or...
DOING NOT DOING...heh, heh, heh...
But first...before we expose the secret keys to the treasure chest containing our sacred doings and elaborations...I would like to share with you some other folk's pronouncements on the subject...
“Procrastination isn’t the problem. It’s the solution. It’s the universe’s way of saying stop, slow down, you move too fast. ”
“Never put off until tomorrow what you can do the day after tomorrow.”
“I love deadlines. Especially the whooshing sound they make as they pass by.”
“Procrastination is the art of keeping up with yesterday.”
“Procrastinators: Leaders of Tomorrow”
“The sooner I fall behind, the more time I have to catch up.”
“Anyone can do any amount of work, provided it isn't the work he is supposed to be doing at that moment.“
“The two rules of procrastination: 1) Do it today. 2) Tomorrow will be today tomorrow.”
“Don't fool yourself that important things can be put off till tomorrow; they can be put off forever, or not at all.”
“Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion.”
C. Northcote Parkinson
“Only Robinson Crusoe had everything done by Friday.”
You know what? I think that by now...if you've gotten this far...that you all figure that you've read enough of my scribbling for one day, so I'm going to hold off on presenting any more from the Duder Bar Symposium on Lazy Wisdom till next time.
As the sign on Ken Kesey's magic bus said...FURTHER...LATER (my addition)...
Sunday, January 17, 2010
Ron and Nancy asked me to close up since the old Duder Bar had pretty well cleared out some time before I got back from seeing CRAZY HEART and they wanted to go home. I said OK and am now behind the empty bar looking at the clock...1:30AM...about that time. The door opens and this cowboy looking guy wanders in...somewhat dazed...and sits down. Maybe its late and maybe I've had a few too many and maybe I'm still under the influence of the movie, but I swear to god this guy looks just like Bad Blake as stunningly portrayed by Jeff Bridges. He squints at the bottles in front of the mirror behind the bar and points...not at a bottle, but at the mirror.
"I'll have one of them Tao Sodas, man," he drawls.
"Yep...one of them you got avvertised there..."
He points again. I look at the mirror and see what he is talking about...the reflection of the Oat Soda Brewery sign on the wall opposite the bar.
"Oh...OK...you mean you want an Oat Soda, huh?"
He laughs a friendly laugh.
"Yeah...if you say so bud...I guess Tao is just Oat spelled backwards ain't it?
"Never thought of it that way, but yeah...".
Whole new realms of odd philosophical inquiry suddenly open up. Who is this guy anyhow. I open an Oat Soda and give it to him. He reaches in his jeans for some money.
"Its on the house...er...mind if I ask you your name? You sure do remind me of somebody..."
"What if I told you my name is BAD?" He laughs as he drains the beer. "Since that damned movie came out I get stopped on the street every five minutes...people thinking I'm Jeff Bridges and wanting my autograph."
"Well, you might say you're his spittin' image."
"Yeah...I get that a lot..."
I look at him closely.
"Man, I could swear..."
"Yeah, yeah, yeah...I look like the older country cousin of the Dude, right? I went into a bowling alley the other night and got that one for the millionth time."
"Well, Bad Blake's first gig in CRAZY HEART is in a fucking bowling alley and he DOES look like the older country cousin of the Dude in that scene. How do you account for that Mr....?"
"Mr. was my father...just call me...just call me..." The grins a mischievous grin. "Aw shush...jus call me that weird Stranger who came into your bar and wanted a drink of Tao..."
Things were getting weird all right. I look around...has the old Duder Bar slipped into the twilight zone...or worse...some Candid Camera ripoff reality show? I open another Oat Soda, look at the label then pass it to the Stranger.
"You know in CRAZY HEART Bad Blake asks Robert Duvall for a "barley pop". Sort of like calling a beer an oat soda but not quite. Do you think that's a reference to The Big Lebowski?"
"Do I look like a goddamed movie writer to you friend?" the Stranger slowly replies. "Why I haven't even seen CRAZY HEART. Feel sort of close to it though. Hear in the end old Bad sobers up and goes back to using his given name...Otis..."
The Stranger stands and finishes his beer. He grins that grin once again. as he leaves me with the evening's parting words of wisdom.
"Otis...Oat is...get it?"
There is a long pause. He laughs at his own stretched reference. A palpable volume of potential insight hangs in the air between us. He finally continues...
"Bad Blake abides, man. He almost dies of drink. He fucks up his relationship with the love of his life. He chews it up and spits it out as a hit song. He STAYS sober...walks away with that slight smile on his face...abides, man. Helluva movie..."
The Stranger wanders out the door of the Duder Bar and into the night.
I lock the front door and turn out the lights.
Outside, the Stranger's voice echoes down the empty street...
"One helluva movie folks! Golden Globes for Best Song...and...AND...the Jeffer wins for Best Actor, man...FINALLY, man..."
THE WEARY KIND begins to play somewhere in the distance...
"...abide, man...the Dude abides..."