which side are you on?

Funny, I usually always agree with Mike and I always agree with John and it was those two who were at odds. Mike’s position was stated in the quote below;

“That said, when I see that reaction from a guy in his position, I don’t feel the meeting needs to adjust its format to fit with a guy who screwed up, – he’s lost that right, and that would be pretty patronizing anyway – no way.”

and John….he was defending this guy coming from a place I call..”all about feelings”. I found it interesting that I was sitting on the fence, wondering how did I get here..am I not able to either just take a stab at my own sense of this, or did I just want it both ways? You know like in the movie that I love so much…where Sean Penn plays Eddie,  gets so mad at Darlene who is played by Robin,  when she tells Eddie she likes both the same? I don’t really like to admit that I am that way, but Gus…I am. I can find it hard to take a position on something and totally stick with it. And thank goodness,  I don’t have to take sides. No one gets angry over things like that….not enough to get their feeling hurt. Or that is how I see it. I just took a stand with Peaches, and with the help of that rolled up newspaper, she is back lying on the bed while the neighbor dogs continues to bark….loosing battle, we just went at it again. She is very stubborn.

This is a copy of a part of email I sent a friend a year ago, I wanted to begin with this dialog, because I feel it may offer some insight into what I want to write about today.

My  topic is “same but different”.

Before I go further, I want to include the scene which I referred to earlier in this piece; Hurlyburly, it is one where Darlene (Robin P Wright) and Eddie (Sean Penn) are going to eat dinner.

Riding in Car….

E. how about Mr Chow’s, treat ourselves right.

D. that sounds great, I love the seaweed.

E. I mean you want Chinese? we can go somewhere else, what about the Petite Door?

R. sure

E. You like that better then Mr Chow?

D. It doesn’t matter, surprise me…

E. I don’t want to surprise you, I want to do just what you want.

D. pick one, I want either

E. why should I have to guess, what if I pick the wrong one?

D, you can’t pick the wrong one, honestly Eddie, I like them both the same

E. How could you like them both the same? One is French, the other is Chinese? They’re as different as different can be – what is the world to you, one big blur? where something that resembles something else is automatically put on the same level in your hierarchy? The only thing they have in common is they are both restaurants.

D. Are you aware you are yelling?

E. My voice is raised in emphasis, a perfectly legitimate use of volume; in addition I have to break through this fucking cloud which you obviously enveloped which encases this big blur  totally devoid of  rudimentary distinction.

D. just call the restaurant will you.

[pausing, no one speaking, Eddie pulls car over]

D. why are you doing this? I’m hungry Eddie,  I just want something to eat.

E. Fuck You, You’re up to something….

D. WHAT? – What do you mean? “I’m up to something?” you’re telling me whether I’m hungry or not?…..I’m hungry…
Paranoid Eddie, para -fucking-noid….(drug reference, Eddie is heavy on coke) just be alert, cause your tendencies are all over the place.

E. I’m fine

D. Your fine? (exasperated) you’re screaming at me about what I’m up to, is paranoid.

E. not if you’re up to something, it’s not.

D. I’m not, listen take my word for it, your sounding a little bit nuts …..[door slams]

E. (screaming) [jumps out of car] I’m supposed to trust your evaluation of the nuances of life’s sanity, you can’t even tell the difference between a French Restaurant and Chinese.


E. Their different….one is French, one is Chinese….they are totally fucking different.

D. not in my (inaudible) they  are not (screaming)

E. the taste, the decor, the waiter, the accents (the fucking accents) the phrases the waiters use, their totally fucking different languages, does this not make any impression on you?

D. yes – it impresses me that I like them both….

E. your total inner emotional experience must be this epic fucking fog, I mean what are you on? some kind of dualistic trip where everything comes in two’s and you can’t tell the difference. so you pull on this taunt wire, people might need some definitive reaction from you in order to know…..

D. Fuck You!

E. What is wrong with that?

D. two guys Eddie, two guys?  that is what this is about….

E. just wondering, you can’t tell the difference between people?

Same but Different…..

Eddie is desperate to find a way to get Darlene to commit.  He is begging her (in his ego driven way) to tell him if she has the ability to see some level of difference. Certainly I can see his point of view, I ask myself this same question lots of the time, can’t I see one pov over another. Many times I can see both. One person speaks his/her view, I nod my head, sure, good point, then the other person speaks, I can see their view. I feel frustrated at times that I cannot see one over the other. To me in this instance, it seems to be the same but different. So in a big way, it doesn’t matter to me which way it goes. I suppose for me, the way my brain presently operates, is I would rather not argue over where to have dinner, and would have just picked one back at jump street, that is not really the better choice either, for, as the saying goes “to thine own self be true” if you don’t care which restaurant,you should not lie, unfortunately I have done that for years to avoid the confrontation that would eventually lead to more arguments. Is there a way to do communicate without it getting that far?

Non Violent Communication or some call it “compassionate communication”

from Wiki

It focuses on two things: honest self-expression — exposing what matters to oneself in a w
ay that’s likely to inspire compassion in others, and
empathy — listening with deep compassion. Formal NVC self-expression includes four elements: observations (distinguished from interpretations/evaluations), feelings (emotions separate from thoughts), needs (deep motives) and requests (clear, present, doable and without demand).

The ideal of NVC is to get one’s own needs met while also meeting others’ needs. A key principle of Nonviolent Communication that supports this is the capacity to express oneself without use of good/bad, right/wrong judgment, hence the emphasis on expressing feelings and needs, instead of criticisms or judgments.

Expressing needs and feeling is a good place to start in figuring out what your deepest level of insight is toward penning down a opinion; for it is said opinions are like “a__holes, everyone has one” . How do I feel, or how did Darlene feel about which restaurant she likes? Apparently she did not like or have much feeling about either one, so she could enjoy both. How did I feel about the differences in John’s and Mike’s difference of opinion that night, both made good sense, and I did not feel especially drawn to one over the other.

Next question; here is one that I certainly have a judgment and criticism; GMO foods. That gets me in the game, I don’t have all of the research memorized, but what I have read, and what I feel is based upon a deeper inner knowing; that when a chemical company that I totally take huge issues with, begins to recreate a natural product; that being the seeds of mankind, that has suited mankind for millions of years, this  company which  I know made products that disfigured and  malformed thousands of Asians and US servicemen, during the Vietnam War, and manufactured the products that gased millions of Jews during the holocaust;  I don’t want this company messing with the food that I consume. So there is one area of life that I can make a definite hard statement. I have feelings and needs.

This is an emphasis on expressing feeling and needs, not just a simple matter of a “judgement”. I have a need to eat good wholesome food, this corporation has not shown themselves to be a good steward of the land. I don’t believe that chemicals added to our soil is the way to good wholesome food. Our soil served us well for millions of years, it is not the soil that needs to be changed, it is mans use of the soil that should be adapted.

Gosh I seem to be jumping around. I have jumped from “same but different” to non-violent communication” and wind up at GMO and soil……shez?

I have been reading from a website entry and this may be a book forgive me, Final Empire http://www.rainbowbody.net/Finalempire/FEchap1.htm

There are wide differences in the Net Photosynthetic Production of many possible vegetative covers. As a rule it is the climax ecosystem of any particular region of the earth that is the most productive in translating the energy of the sun into the growth of plants and in turn into organic debris which revitalizes the soil.

A climax ecosystem is the Equilibrium State of the “flesh” of the earth. After a severe forest fire, or to recover from the injury of clearcut logging, the forest organism slowly heals the wound by inhabiting the area with a succession of plant communities. Each succeeding community prepares the area for the next community. In general terms, an evergreen forest wound will be covered by tough small plants, popularly called “weeds” and the grasses which hold down the topsoil and prepare the way for other grasses and woody shrubs to grow up on the wound. (“Weeds” are the “first aid crew” on open ground.) As a general rule, the “first aid crew” – the first community of plants to get in and cover the bare soil and hold it down – is the more simple plant community with the smallest number of species of plants, animals, insects, micro-organisms and so forth. As the succession proceeds, the diversity, the number of species, increases as does the NPP, until the climax system is reached again, and equilibrium is established. The system drives toward complexity of form, maximum ability to translate incoming energy (NPP) and diversity of energy pathways (food chains and other services that plants and animals perform for one another). The plants will hold the soil so that it may be built back up. They will shade the soil to prevent its oxidation (the heating and drying of soil promotes chemical changes that cause sterility) and conserve moisture. Each plant takes up different combinations of nutrients from the soil so that specific succession communities prepare specific soil nutrients for specific plant communities that will succeed them. Following the preparation of the site by these plants, larger plants, alders and other broadleaf trees will come in and their lives and deaths will further prepare the micro-climate and soil for the evergreens. These trees function as “nurse” trees for the final climax community, which will be conifers. Seedling Douglas Fir for example, cannot grow in sunlight and must have shade provided by these forerunner communities.”



I don’t think this is some new unheard of information, I recall learning this in some course or book I read years ago. However, this is does not seem to represent  mankinds priority today. We are not rejuvenating our soil. That thin top soil is eroding.


The writer of this article goes to explain that the balance of nature, allowing the soil to re nourish itself and states also, that “The life of the earth is fundamentally predicated upon the soil. If there is no soil, there is no life, as we know it.”
 if we can agree upon this we can go on, if not would someone please inform me of what you have to offer that will be better?


As I stated earlier, this is not our priority today, we have sacrificed our bond with the soil here in North America; where small family farms only represent a minor fraction of the total food produced here in US. The majority of our land is being farmed by corporate interest who by the very nature of their existence is dictated by selfish blind greed. Nothing at all to do with being stewards of the land. Along with that is the fact that monster corp/gov’s such as monsanistor is capitalizing on the agri/corp/gov and selling seeds of destruction and chemicals of death to farmers, who don’t have a clue, they hear the cleverly crafted monsansitor’s  spiel and fall for it, and I don’t  mind saying, that a company as crafty and cunning as monsansitor would have fooled me. I have heard their little presentations, it sounds great! good job guys! hope you get to eat all of your projects!  Maybe you can grow a couple extra legs from that stuff, you will need it for  when you are finally seen for what you are, you gonna need those extra legs to run out of town. Warning! you can run, but you cannot hide. (you may be glowing in the dark as well, who knows?) for we are all guinea pigs here in USA and Canada.


I did some organic methods of land use back in the late 20th century. One thing that I learned from my experience it that when you fertilize with organic fertilizers, you can expect your roots to grow deeper, this protects the soil, and also saves on water, because the deeper your roots are, the moisture is more dense. I watched as my lawn began to have a much healthier appearance, less water was needed, and the grass was growing at a better pace. I was indeed gratified to discover such a prudent method of lawn care. I did see the roots take a deeper hold, and of course this led to the lower water needs. It was certainly win-win-win.  Before my discovery in the organic methods, I had been using the chemical poison methods, and when you would stick your hand in the soil, it would be dry and lifeless just a inch below ground. I saw this change with my new natural approach. Also, you did not have your roots sitting on the ground

Serious problem….I just don’t think this is right!




I ran out of steam yesterday, the problem for me, is that I cannot maintain focus, I jump around too much. Maybe the result of all these pov’s that dance in my head and my heart. Conflicted, between the compassionate views, and what has been drilled into my brain for these many decades.


Ah well, today is Sunday and it is Earth Day. I got a great email from an old pal in Arkansas, he never writes me email, ever…..just sends me jokes ( the thrifty typist way to communicate) however, today he sent me a lovely spiritual message, it was so touching. Especially coming from him< my brain/ego wants to analyze this, and is confused, my brain/ego ask me “what does he want?” my heart goes “isn’t that wonderful, that he is able to view the world through eyes such as this.” 


that my friends is not same but different…..


that is conflict of the human experience.


life is not ever going to be a easy puzzle to piece together, it is more like a lovely patchwork quilt, when you find a scrap of material that looks good, go for it, and if the pieces don’t fit together great today, maybe tomorrow something will show up that will.


I am in love this morning……I can breath deep long breaths, and I love that!


same but different…..

(photo by my brother Rex)



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