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Immortality ~ Not Fame   May 27 2011

Filed under Olio by Ewen Shearer

I have neither time nor inclination to communicate the fullness of my heart in speech, I am resolved to do it in writing, and to print myself out."
~ Joseph Addison

Writing is the most devalued human pastime.

More words written each day than people have thoughts. More people writing than times past combined. Tools cheap, output prolific.

Writing is futile if authors outnumber readers.

And then we have plagiarism by default, and automated in assault.

No matter how original and clever a dash of prose, someone else will think of it. Combinations of words effectively infinite, our limited and parallel experience channels thought along paths well worn.

If we never really forget what’s heard or seen, then every written creation has the smell of thievery even if, like body odour, it’s pure fresh to the author.

Still I must write, as must we all, if only for ourselves. Duplication, oversupply, be damned.

I must write publicly because.. well, I can. I enjoy creating content that’s visible. We all do, in faint hope of fame, maybe, but also simply to share.

Sharing. It’s what we have always done best.

And are we not enchanted by the Internet’s connectivity and community?

If literature is the thoughts of the masters, reading is an enduring resonance with them. Thus inspired, we revel in typing out loud the inner dialog.

A celebration of the mind.


Immediately I concede the whole thing should probably not be public as, ultimately, it contains nothing of value – nothing like a real magazine, for example, with considered opinion, informed articles, profound arguments, incisive viewpoints, entertaining prose .. you get the idea.

SheepOverboard is quite simply one person’s quest to understand self.

Essays that reflect a world impinged relentless on an enraged infant who emerged from sheltered childhood with textbook utopian views of civilization, then crushed to find society was not a nurturing protective community, but a beast preying cruelly and remorselessly on its progeny, to sustain some vacant game.

Without web publishing the incentive to write at all might dissolve, as it probably would have for every person whoever scribed, dictated, or typed what now comprises the world’s literature in times past. Without this web site, a minnow in an ocean of authoring, writing anything at all is instantly futile.

But for me life would melt into the formlessness of those mannequins around me. It would become an idle meaningless use of space, food, chattels, and time.

A diary, like burned letters or lost manuscripts, would almost certainly accompany those pathetic artefacts to a dumpster at the end of life, soon after the body is similarly disposed.

Immortality of sorts

My parents and grandparents still loom large in an internal landscape, yet they ceased to exist decades ago. Their contemporaries with whom they shared reality are dead, too. Apart from a government registry entry and some sepia photographs they are in oblivion.

This is a universal lament.

It’s likely we hammer away on plastic alphabets with an inkling of the immortality it might promise. No grandiose dream for us ordinary folk, just a sustaining concept.

Tipler theorizes our descendants will recreate us in a hereafter, having modeled the past. He takes takes flak for flaky physics .. but it’s rather early days to bag each other about how the universe might end.

Well, get your intellectual DNA onto the Internet Archiver, quick.

Down Under


Ink Irresistable

Not the NYT Montaigne's what would I know? Huxley's almost anything about almost everything. Or Bierce and nothing matters. Codifying life's inimitable impromptu inclines irrestistably to essay.

Civilization ..

   defiles itself

Times past when warlords, priests and royalty hoarded luxury, life was a short grim struggle. Today most want for little yet still deny dignified survival to working poor, and ravage entire countries as collateral to our laissez faire fiesta.
double arrowOn not shedding a tear ..

A Century of Imperialism

     ..hasn't dulled the urge

American foreign policy never a pretty sight, finesse of the mobile crane chase from Terminator 3. Export democracy? Cure worse than disease. double arrow Read more ..


~ its own reward

And what's going on in Land of the Free, Home of the Brave? As 40% of kids fail graduation the Iraqistan wars suck $2.4 trillion [CBO 2017 est]. Imagine this staggering sum applied to rebuilding The Great Society. Think of others.
double arrow Where Charity Begins

This lazy unemployed

..crack-smoking welfare queen ran up U$15 trillion debt

lazy homeless scum
Odd how the ultra-wealthy gull even working poor to blame unemployed, disabled, weak, and vulnerable while but for the grace of God go all.

If he's a welfare leech then your soul is with the sociopaths and predators who own Warshington and its minions, the Repugnicans and Dumfocrats, gutting a once noble nation that aspired to equality.

This elite will survive the US economic train wreck, land softly on 300 million plundered taxpayers, then from fortresses of luxury and privilege prey elsewhere for spoils.

The dawn of civilization was greatly exaggerated.

Munch Montage

Painters, such a sad old bunch
None it seems more so than Munch
Upon that bridge with skies afire
A meme took flight to never tire.
2arrow gif

Quote Me

"I am an obsessive rewriter, doing one draft and then another and another. In a way I have nothing to say but a great deal to add
~ Gore Vidal

"Rulers of state are the only ones who should have the privilege of lying" (Well, that explains the last 2500 years)
~ Plato

"By 'known unknowns' I was referring to the universe's dark matter.."
~ Donald Rumsfeld

"I have neither time nor inclination to communicate the fullness of my heart in speech, I am resolved to do it in writing, and to print myself out.."
~ Joseph Addison