Friday, November 27, 2009


See, what I love about '80s movies is that they're so beautifully contrived that they're almost more real.

You know?

Seriously, I'd marry the guy on the spot.

Could a Loyd Dobler really exist?

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


An Addition to Plato’s Phaedo
By: Tana M. Frechem
Pen & Sword

ECHECRATES: Are you quite certain that nothing else was spoken? Socrates said nothing else before he took the potion?
PHAIDON: Yes I am sure that I have accounted for all that passed between Socrates and the others present. Do you doubt my memory, good Echecrates?
ECHECRATES: No, not at all. I merely wanted to be certain that I had missed nothing.
PHAIDON: Hold a moment. Perhaps I spoke too soon. It seems to me that I have left something out. Yes, I have forgotten something indeed. After Socrates had spoken a bit about the nature of body and soul, he called Criton to his side.
“Criton, it strikes me that this discussion may relate very closely to our conversation of laws. When you left me the other day, I did not feel that you were quite at peace with my decision to remain in prison, despite what I said to you. Is this true?” said Socrates
“Indeed, you are right,” said Criton. “I am not at peace that my dear friend willingly submits to such an unjust treatment. For all your praise of Justice, I see none here.”
“Ah my friend, Justice is the very heart of the thing, no, even the very Soul!” replied Socrates with a small laugh.
“Socrates, I do not see any cause for laughter. This day is a somber day if ever I knew one.”
“As I have said, this day is not a somber one. But perhaps the laughter was out of place. I laughed only because I spoke more truth than I knew!” said he. “Let me explain myself. Maybe one you see Justice robed in all the glory she deserves, you will understand.”
“I will listen to you, Socrates,” said Criton.
“Excellent. Now, we have already spoken a bit on the relation to soul and the body, correct?”
“Yes, but I do not see how that relates to this present topic,” said Criton.
“All in its proper time, dear friend. In my explanation to Simmias upon the nature of body and soul, we determined that they must be two separate, but both important things, did we not?” said Socrates.
“We did.”
“And what did we decide was the nature of death?”
“Only that it would be the separation of the body from the soul. Nothing more,” replied Criton.
“Precisely. And while we have made the case that the soul lives on, in our physical existence, at least, the body is equally important to life.”
“It would be folly to think otherwise. But the body, as you said, ought to be the slave to the master of the soul.”
“Well remembered!” said Socrates, “But regardless of the extent to which the body obeys the soul, without a body, a soul has little effect within the physical world. Likewise, without a soul, a person ceases to live and is therefore dead.”
“All correct, Socrates,” replied Criton.
“Now, let us discuss Laws. There must be two separate parts in order for Law to function correctly. There must be a physical body of people to be governed, and then the Law itself, correct? And without one, the other cannot perform, also correct?”
“Of course.”
“And it is understood that if a body of people exists and functions, there must be some form of a Law that gives their societal group a life. Even for the most savage of people, living in a society where every man looks after himself, that is the law, and man is expected to conduct himself in accordance with those guidelines.”
“I have found no place for disagreement, thus far,” said Criton.
“So you would agree that the relationship of dependence of Law on governed body is the same as the relationship of Soul and body?”
“Well, yes, I suppose in that regard I would. It would go against logic, if I were to disagree.”
“Yes, logic, and other powers as well,” said Socrates, laughing again. “But now, let us soldier onward. I will make you understand my reasons for remaining a prisoner yet.”
“I listen still,” said Criton with a sad expression.
Socrates sat for a moment, choosing his words, and then began: “Alright. If we are agreed that the relationship is precisely the same, then it is safe to call Law, or Justice, the Soul of a civilization, correct?”
“I suppose that makes sense,” said Criton.
“Indeed, it does, because as a body of humans, we are mastered by Law. It is the omnipresent. And Law, too, is eternal as the Soul. The man who lays it down may die, but his Law continues onward, supported by a healthy society. And even if a society were to fall, the concept of Law would still live on. It ends never. That, my dear Criton, is why I could not and cannot bring myself to trespass against the Law. It would not only be a matter of a child striking a parent, which is bad enough on its own right, but also a matter of a body breaking his own Soul. This I cannot do.”
Criton looked down for a moment, pondering what Socrates had spoken. Then he said, “I agree with you, that such a relationship is sacred and ought not be broken, but how is it that Law can change?”
“You always thought well, Criton. I am impressed with your desire to understand. I will answer your question with another question: Can a Soul change?”
“I do not understand, Socrates. Change in what manner?” answered Criton.
“Very well, I shall assist you. The Soul itself will always be a Soul, made from the essence of Soul-stuff. But the nature of a Soul is absolutely subject to change. We have discussed that the Soul, being on a higher level, ought to be master over the body, have we not? But as with a real slave, the body is capable of rebellion. As I told Simmias, a body that revels in the physical things and does not heed the divine whisperings of the Soul, can, indeed, become master. But this is an unhappy circumstance. Neither body nor Soul is in its proper place, and the result comes down to nothing more than misery. It is the very same with Law,” said Socrates.
“I think I am beginning to see,” said Criton
“Good! Let us continue, then. Law is like the Soul: subject to the rebellion of the physical body, because the physical body holds a power in a physical world, is it not true?”
“Perfectly true,” said Criton.
“Then if the body of the governed becomes corrupt and no longer concerned with the eternal welfare of the people as a whole, it is the same as a body becoming a master over a Soul. Misery is the only possible outcome.”
Criton was very still for a moment, and he looked very sad. Suddenly, he turned to look at Socrates.
He said, “Socrates, I think I have finally understood you. All this time you have been talking, I was angry with you. I could not see how you could be so blind. You would break the express orders of the Tyrants. Indeed, it was that breaking of their Law that landed you in here, despite the excuses they used in court. We all know it. They still bear a grudge. And I could not understand how you could break their Law, but when they put you in prison for breaking it, you could not break that rule as well.”
“I see your confusion,” said Socrates.
“But things have become much clearer. When the Tyrants reigned, their thoughts were not on the eternal welfare of the people. It was a rule of body. And the rule of the body need not be heeded. But now that our government has been restored, the focus is once again on the betterment of the whole. That Law, that Soul, is truly a righteous one. You cannot disobey.”
“My dearest friend,” said Socrates softly, “ In all of the explanations I have put forth, I have never been more grateful for true understanding than I am right now.”
They embraced, weeping, Criton shedding many tears of sorrow for knowing so little, and Socrates shedding a few tears of joy for knowing so much.

Sunday, November 22, 2009


Cowboys and Indies was the best. Well, maybe not the best, but pretty dang close. I challenge you to go to an ER show and try not to dance. Just try it. Seve vs. Evan was epic, too. Moses was a lot more mellow, so I wasn't quite as drawn in, but the other Cowboy band, Code Hero, was fantastic. Unfortunately, the crowd sucked. Droves of insolent, rude high school seniors talked over both Code Hero's and Moses' sets; I think part of the reason that ER and SvE stuck out was because they were loud enough to drown out the chatter. Also, apparently there's an ongoing joke betwixt the members of Seve vs. Evan, that involves the removal of shirts:

On another note, I am pee-my-pants excited for the Dec. 4 show. The Russel brothers, as mudbison and Isaac Russel, will be playing together, and I cannot wait.

Come on Wednesday. You're almost here.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


Life life life.

My goodness, where to begin?

I'm in love. With Walt Whitman. As if you couldn't already tell. I've got several poems taped up around my room.

Hair Peace sign is in development.

Reading the heck out of Plato. I also know what I'm doing for my next Pen & Sword project (after this blasted exam is over): I'd like to take over Plato's style and create a "lost dialogue" of sorts, entitled "Justification." I have this idea that in Crito, Socrates is (without directly stating it) equating Law with Soul, and the governed body with the physical body. It's a multifaceted concept, and I think I could pull enough out to satisfy Griggs.

I desperately need to go to the Cinema. I haven't been in so long! After this crushing week is over, I think I shall. Pirate Radio looks good. Then, too, if Bright Star is still anywhere around, I might see that. Also, whenever it gets out, Fantastic Mr. Fox, because I'm actually still a fourth-grader at heart, and Roald Dahl is one of my favorite authors, and the animation style looks gorgeous!

I'm euphoric. The almighty internet told me that Good Earth Natural Foods stocks Tofurky! Hoorah! This Thanksgiving is going to be excellent.

Lastly, I am seriously looking for a nature-oriented job this summer. Somewhere in the mountains. A paid Hermitage would, I think, be most premium, but those aren't super common anymore. Alas and alack, I will search on.

Sunday, November 8, 2009


Dear Walt,

Thank you.

Love, Tana

Pioneers! O Pioneers!
- Walt Whitman

Come my tan-faced children,
Follow well in order, get your weapons ready,
Have you your pistols? have you your sharp-edged axes?
Pioneers! O pioneers!

For we cannot tarry here,
We must march my darlings, we must bear the brunt of danger,
We the youthful sinewy races, all the rest on us depend,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

O you youths, Western youths,
So impatient, full of action, full of manly pride and friendship,
Plain I see you Western youths, see you tramping with the foremost,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

Have the elder races halted?
Do they droop and end their lesson, wearied over there beyond the seas?
We take up the task eternal, and the burden and the lesson,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

All the past we leave behind,
We debouch upon a newer mightier world, varied world,
Fresh and strong the world we seize, world of labor and the march,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

We detachments steady throwing,
Down the edges, through the passes, up the mountains steep,
Conquering, holding, daring, venturing as we go the unknown ways,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

We primeval forests felling,
We the rivers stemming, vexing we and piercing deep the mines within,
We the surface broad surveying, we the virgin soil upheaving,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

Colorado men are we,
From the peaks gigantic, from the great sierras and the high plateaus,
From the mine and from the gully, from the hunting trail we come,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

From Nebraska, from Arkansas,
Central inland race are we, from Missouri, with the continental
blood intervein'd,
All the hands of comrades clasping, all the Southern, all the Northern,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

O resistless restless race!
O beloved race in all! O my breast aches with tender love for all!
O I mourn and yet exult, I am rapt with love for all,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

Raise the mighty mother mistress,
Waving high the delicate mistress, over all the starry mistress,
(bend your heads all,)
Raise the fang'd and warlike mistress, stern, impassive, weapon'd mistress,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

See my children, resolute children,
By those swarms upon our rear we must never yield or falter,
Ages back in ghostly millions frowning there behind us urging,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

On and on the compact ranks,
With accessions ever waiting, with the places of the dead quickly fill'd,
Through the battle, through defeat, moving yet and never stopping,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

O to die advancing on!
Are there some of us to droop and die? has the hour come?
Then upon the march we fittest die, soon and sure the gap is fill'd.
Pioneers! O pioneers!

All the pulses of the world,
Falling in they beat for us, with the Western movement beat,
Holding single or together, steady moving to the front, all for us,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

Life's involv'd and varied pageants,
All the forms and shows, all the workmen at their work,
All the seamen and the landsmen, all the masters with their slaves,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

All the hapless silent lovers,
All the prisoners in the prisons, all the righteous and the wicked,
All the joyous, all the sorrowing, all the living, all the dying,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

I too with my soul and body,
We, a curious trio, picking, wandering on our way,
Through these shores amid the shadows, with the apparitions pressing,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

Lo, the darting bowling orb!
Lo, the brother orbs around, all the clustering suns and planets,
All the dazzling days, all the mystic nights with dreams,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

These are of us, they are with us,
All for primal needed work, while the followers there in embryo wait behind,
We to-day's procession heading, we the route for travel clearing,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

O you daughters of the West!
O you young and elder daughters! O you mothers and you wives!
Never must you be divided, in our ranks you move united,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

Minstrels latent on the prairies!
(Shrouded bards of other lands, you may rest, you have done your work,)
Soon I hear you coming warbling, soon you rise and tramp amid us,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

Not for delectations sweet,
Not the cushion and the slipper, not the peaceful and the studious,
Not the riches safe and palling, not for us the tame enjoyment,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

Do the feasters gluttonous feast?
Do the corpulent sleepers sleep? have they lock'd and bolted doors?
Still be ours the diet hard, and the blanket on the ground,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

Has the night descended?
Was the road of late so toilsome? did we stop discouraged nodding
on our way?
Yet a passing hour I yield you in your tracks to pause oblivious,
Pioneers! O pioneers!

Till with sound of trumpet,
Far, far off the daybreak call--hark! how loud and clear I hear it wind,
Swift! to the head of the army!--swift! spring to your places,
Pioneers! O pioneers!