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The Bookshelf

Doug's bookshelf: read

AntwerpWarsaw BikiniIcelandHow the Soldier Repairs the GramophoneThe Original of LauraBrief Interviews with Hideous Men

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Doug's  book recommendations, reviews, favorite quotes, book clubs, book trivia, book lists

Time Since Reboot

  • 1060 days, 22 hours, 51 minutes, 17 seconds ago

But you’re never gonna feel a fraction of the way it used to work on your imagination.

A weekly gallery of photographs I’ve come across in the internet’s vast expanse.  Mouse over the picture for the artist’s name and click to check out their portfolios or other source/presence on the web.  Enjoy.

Alina Valitova Nina Leen Sturmmacher Danny Santos II Macoto Murayama Leon Tarac tholang laeksa-red Mashkov Isaim Lozano

Doster Hall (w/ a Bryant-Denny Backlight)

ISO 1600, 1/15 sec @ f/2.8, 28mm
Nikon D800  |  NIKKOR 28mm f/2.8   
Univ. of Alabama – Tuscaloosa, Alabama USA
May 25, 2013  7:57 PM
© DRS 2013,
(cc) by-nc-nd

Belated Tuesday Post

Better late than never.  Here, check out some ‘Bama cheerleaders:

via Athlon Sports

You’re welcome.

Lamb

ISO 360, 1/2000 sec @ f/5.6, 200mm
Nikon D90  |  AF-S DX Nikkor 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR II 
Macedonia Primitive Baptist Church – Ashland, AL USA
August 29, 2009  11:33 AM
© DRS 2013,
(cc) by-nc-nd

Two Plus Two Is On My Mind

Perhaps, when we remember wars, we should take off our clothes and paint ourselves blue and go on all fours all day long and grunt like pigs. That would surely be more appropriate than noble oratory and shows of flags and well-oiled guns.

~ Kurt Vonnegut (a man well-acquainted with wartime atrocities), from Cat’s Cradle

It is all well and good and very appropriate to remember the men and women who have died while serving in the US Armed Forces.  They deserve our respect, as does anyone who has chosen to serve their country – and members of my family are included in that population.  But it is extremely important to separate those who serve from the institutions and machinery that send them off to die on foreign soil.  The blatant profiteering.  The political motivations.  The murky justification via appeals to God and Patriotism, scare-tactics and outright falsifications.  The veterans who return home with PTSD and other disorders that are treated minimally if at all; home to a depressed economy offering very few opportunities.  The dead on all sides – including innocent civilians caught in the crossfire. 

I have the utmost reverence to those who have given their lives for my country’s defense.  But forgive me if I don’t wave the flag and pound my chest and celebrate ‘murica this weekend.  Freedom, liberty, justice – those have become empty words used by politicians to suppress critical thinking and intelligent discourse.  Until we find a way to stem the tide of greed, lust for power, false superiority and kneejerk reactionism, all our barbecues, anthems and wafting stars and stripes are just masks for a question no one wants us to ask: what exactly did these great Americans die for anyway?

2 + 2 = ?

Yes it’s true I am a young man
But I’m old enough to kill
I don’t want to kill nobody
But I must if you so will

And if I raise my hand in question
You just say that I’m a fool
Cause I got the gall to ask you
Can you maybe change the rule

And you stand and call me up-start
Ask what answer can I find
I ain’t sayin I’m a genius
Two plus two is on my mind
Two plus two is on my mind

Well I knew a guy in high school
Just an average, friendly guy
And he had himself a girlfriend
And you made them say goodbye

Now he’s buried in the mud
Of a foreign jungle land
And his girl just sits and cries
She just doesn’t understand

So you say he died for freedom
Well he just died to save your lies
Go ahead and call me yellow
Two plus two is on my mind
Two plus two is on my mind

All I know is that I’m young
And your rules they are old
If I’ve got to kill to live
Then there’s something left untold

I’m no statesman, I’m no general
I know that I’ll never be
It’s the rules, not the soldier
That are my real enemy

I’m no prophet, I’m no rebel
I’m just asking you why
I just want a simple answer
Why it is I’ve got to die

I’m a simple minded guy
Two plus two is on my mind
Two plus two is on my mind
Two plus two is on my mind

~ Bob Seger

The answer isn’t as easy as “freedom” and “justice.”  Ask an Afghani widow displaced from her home if justice has been served.  Ask an unemployed veteran suffering from anxiety, depression and insomnia how free he is.  We owe it to our fallen protectors to question these actions that are taken in our name.  Flowers and flags placed at gravesites are not enough.

Artifact

ISO 1250, 1/30 sec @ f/5.6, 105mm
Nikon D800  |  Nikon AF Zoom-Nikkor 28-200mm f/3.5-5.6G IF-ED 
Haley Center – Auburn, Alabama USA
April 20, 2013  4:05 PM
© DRS 2013,
(cc) by-nc-nd