Some remarks about The Wire

Today, literary criticism is an exceedingly complicated discipline – one so complex that most people are unable to put forth a serious critique of a book without falling back on their own subjective tastes that lack rigor and reflective thought.

However, I have discovered a technique that may aid us in our attempt to judiciously critique a work of literature, be it a novel or film. Simply put, this technique is a careful analysis of the characters, how they are deployed in the story: do they represent the classic protagonist/antagonist that’s based on a black and white picture of reality? Or are they representative of a morally ambiguous reality in which the audience is trusted to be able to judge them? Merely a placeholder for an overarching ideology the author is foisting upon the reader? Continue reading Some remarks about The Wire

Not Deaf enough?

Deaf Power, by Paul Scearce

In February, I submitted the dialogue, None The Wiser, to a collection of Deaf American Prose, in the hopes of being published. However, the professors helming that project had decided that my dialogue was not “deaf” enough to make the cut – even though in their call for submissions, they specified that the topic did not have to be “explicitly about deaf, Deaf, or hard of hearing American lives, but … the author [must be] deaf, Deaf, or hard of hearing.”

As a deaf author, I thought this project was not necessarily a collection of writings about deafness by deaf authors. But, given the politics behind the rejection, it appears that, in order for me to be published as a deaf person, I must write about deaf issues. I was mistaken in the naïve belief that being a deaf man who could write like a philosopher would be sufficient, and that I need not be defined by my deafness, but this is not the case. Continue reading Not Deaf enough?



“…a single-minded pursuit of flagons, feasts, and fornication.”
Known as the former roman god of the underworld and an erstwhile punisher of broken oaths. He used to represent the evil and punishing side of Pluto (roman god of wealth) and tormented evildoers in the afterlife. His power is often limited to mortals, which means he has little to no role among the immortals. Mortals hate him, while the society of immortals often ridicule his position.

Clearly dishonest, disloyal, lacking interest in relationships, but in spite of these vices, Orcus represents a sort of exciting danger, particularly for women and goddesses. Continue reading Orcus


Truth is a woman; she only loves a warrior. – Nietzsche
As the Greek deity Enyo, Bellona often carried weapons of war drenched in blood, and accompanied Ares, the premier god of war. As the Roman goddess, she was the original war deity. Currently a member of the Senate at Teotihuacán.

A hopelessly self-centered goddess, Bellona is constantly embroiled in drama, for she needs it in order to keep boredom away. She finds comfort and security anathema, and seeks trouble instead. A passive aggressive sado-masochist, pain is a source of pleasure, and Bellona enjoys complaining about such troubles, being the victim. She despises the polite gods, and often argues with them. Bellona has a long history of tragedies and traumas, and is always on the outlook for a new one, consciously or unconsciously. Continue reading Bellona

Stupidity is the only sin

Homer Simpson's brain seen with MRI/X ray.

Elsewhere I’ve mentioned the Greek notion that more pain or suffering is caused by ignorance or stupidity than outright evil. Despite the inevitable objections from indignant moralists, pain and suffering encompasses far more than the mere violations of liberal justice.

Where animals have instincts that guide them, people employ rationality to balance themselves. Although people are also animals, the species instinct is terribly underdeveloped, and once a person abandons rationality, and careening down the slippery slopes of unreason, he or she becomes unbalanced.

One form of imbalance is the mummified concept, the preserved cadaver, the embalmed remains of what used to be a living idea, a tickling sensation, or a brilliant moment. An original insight is captured and mounted on the wall as a well-groomed “belief,” a freeze-fried snapshot of a rich experience, but one that tends to dominate everything else until it becomes the sacred “dogma.”

These comfortable dogmas are medications against anxiety and other uncomfortable moods of existential angst, and vanity and sloth keeps them in circulation.

Philosophy is the antidote to these dogmas, for it is strictly a tool of unlearning. See here and here and here for further explication.

One trick I used to avoid contentment was where a friend and I would take positions we ourselves did not hold and defend them rigorously against the attacks of the other. This was an excellent way of killing time until the women showed up.

Nonetheless, if one wishes to be mediocre, one is happy with his lot in life, and will not have anything to do with philosophy.

La paresse, or indolence

L’Indolence, by Frederick Bridgman

La Rochefoucauld says the least known of all the passions is idleness, yet it is also the most fierce and destructive of all; the evils it causes are concealed. La paresse, or idleness/indolence, is almost as much of an obstacle as self-love (amour propre) is in the search for truth itself. Despite working quietly and sometimes imperceptibly, indolence has the ability to change our lives: Continue reading La paresse, or indolence

As things fell apart…

A Pantheonic dialogue

LAKSHMI: Can you tell me how everything went wrong?

GANESHA: I have gone through the events over and over and I remain at a loss how my plans crumbled, and I ended up 180 degrees from where I began.

LAKSHMI: Tell me.

GANESHA: After i acquired a Genesis planet, with the most advanced template I set out to create a race of sublime mortals. I learned from the mistakes of the elder gods and I intended to fulfill all the dreams of these mortals, satisfy their desires and ensure that happiness was a reality, not a mere ideal. My stratagems were put in effect to produce a perfect race that lives comfortably in utopia, and I would become the envy of all other pantheons.

LAKSHMI: That is why you created them as children – all the better to enjoy the world, live in the present and be carefree.

GANESHA: No matter how advanced my template was, these mortals were flawed . They did not remain idyllic for long. Much to my surprise, they grew… sophisticated.

LAKSHMI: They tired of being children?

GANESHA: Yes. They gained the ability to reason, and that caused a general mood of disappointment. Their childlike hopes disintegrated rather quickly.

LAKSHMI: But – the suicides?

GANESHA: That was my first sign. Through reasoning, they figured out how to kill off themselves. Once their hopes were dashed, they could no longer bear living. My ambitious project turned out to be a greater failure than any of the elder gods!

LAKSHMI: Weren’t you successful for several centuries of your rule?

GANESHA: Actually, I did try short-term solutions to solve this existential malady – I added more land to the world, and introduced more variety in nature with animals and plants. These changes did work for a while, and they distracted the mortals. As the years passed, the novelty faded, and they grew bored with life again. Even contemptuous! I could never return them to their original state as children.

LAKSHMI: Hmmm. Nothing new can outlast the invincible sequence of time.

GANESHA: I didn’t stop there. I tried introducing more obstacles in order to challenge them, force them to expand their reason and find solutions. I also proliferated the mortals into different factions, so they could not intermingle as easily and casually. They were strangers to one another, constantly misunderstanding each other, and that led to discord, violent conflict.

LAKSHMI: Wasn’t that Yahweh’s original error?

GANESHA: No, he did it too early, when the population on Earth was much smaller. Never mind that. Despite all the obstacles, and the increase in their intellectual activity, they lapsed back into boredom. Ennui seemed ineradicable.

LAKSHMI: Perhaps your template was not flawed.

GANESHA: Indeed, perhaps it was too advanced. Despite all their intellectual development, they are demanding for the presence of Truth!

LAKSHMI: No, it isn’t the template. It is time to abandon your original plan. Your problem is an excess of mercy, and that makes it easier for your mortals to take you for granted. I recommend you to answer their demands: Send them the Truth.

GANESHA: You’re mad. By doing so, won’t that turn them into gods?

LAKSHMI: Not exactly. Not even Truth could do that. In fact, she will pull off the opposite. She will destroy all their illusions, and become the Tyrant of the race.

GANESHA: Preposterous! Truth is Beauty. She reveals our beatitude.

LAKSHMI: Sure, but she shall reflect the mortals’ wretchedness instead. Not their beauty. For them the only truth is the falsity of all things, for they all are temporary, merely transient, and all their griefs are empty. These mortals will always remain dissatisfied, and their dissatisfaction continues to crucify them for all time…..

Some reproaches praise; some praises reproach.

Suspicion by Tim Ernst

The typically suspicious claims of the cynic or conspiracy theorist only expose his rotten perspective of human nature. I was once told that even the act of thanks is suspect, for all gratitude is conditioned propaganda. If that is the case then nobody deserves thanks, because merit is impossible to determine, given the ugly taint of self-serving motives. It depends whether being publicly grateful is suspect because all praise is necessarily suspect.  Continue reading Some reproaches praise; some praises reproach.

The heaviest things in life are grudges

I was talking about grudges with a friend recently, and we agreed on many things. A grudge is the ill will one continues to hold for a long period of time, but the interesting thing is that despite being infuriated by certain snubs, we are not likely to dismiss these painful feelings and move on to greener pastures. Continue reading The heaviest things in life are grudges


Former member of the Heliopolitan Pantheon, Thoth is traditionally known as the scribe, or the custodian of all knowledge. He has now become a Consul, a prestigious position at Teotihuacan, in which he is Cartaphilus’ inside man. Where Cartaphilus works from the outside as the voice in the wilderness, Thoth is already working from within, inside the system. While Cartaphilus is more dramatic – he works from outside-in, while Thoth works from the inside out, behind the scenes – they both share the same sense for reform.

Witty, clever, constantly punctuating his remarks with a theatrical flourish, Thoth can make even the most routine events seem exciting. His attentive and elegant ways is necessary for traveling in such esteemed social circles, among the heads of pantheons and other ambassadors at Teotihuacan. He knows far too much about every god of repute, and has the knack of saying the right thing. Continue reading Thoth