03.14.2013 10:12 PM

Conrad on life, which I have had memorized for 34 years

“Droll thing life is — that mysterious arrangement of merciless logic for a futile purpose. The most you can hope from it is some knowledge of yourself — that comes too late — a crop of inextinguishable regrets.”

From The Heart of Darkness.


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    JM says:

    Quite right. And to paraphrase from the
    Testaments, as I don’t speak Aramaic (from this atheist no less):”Self-knowledge alone avails one nothing.”
    But most are toothless curtains, ready to quietly insist and disinform, but holy in public and able at the board to excite prejudice and personify hypocrisy. I’m much more a fan of the warrior unapologetic, as unlikable as the false frame might make them. Enjoy the redneck Riviera.

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    Peter says:

    Seeing as we are into philosophy-by-the-pool today:

    And I gave my heart to know wisdom, and to know madness and folly: I perceived that this also is vexation of spirit.

    For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow

    Ecclesiastes 1: 17-18

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    bluegreenblogger says:

    I’ll see your Conrad, and raise you a Shakespeare, lol.

    To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,
    Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
    To the last syllable of recorded time;
    And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
    The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
    Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player,
    That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
    And then is heard no more. It is a tale
    Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
    Signifying nothing.

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    Mark says:

    Seems like quite a downer to me….

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    Houland Wolfe says:

    Jeez, cheer up everyone! Kinsella’s on a beach, drinking pina coladas, thinking deep thoughts. Back up North, the sun is shining, it is light until 8:00 p.m., the birds are returning and crocuses are popping. Let’s celebrate today for tomorrow we die. . . . .umm, oh, yeah.

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    J.W. says:

    I think Warren is reflecting on the most recent of many in senselessness: 5 year old killed by garbage truck, young vibrant policewoman killed in Guelph accident. And so it goes; merciless logic, futile purpose.

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    dave says:

    Droll, as in getting myself worked up seeing young people making the same mistakes I made 40 and 50 years ago, and then, my merciless logic sets me the futile purpose of ranting, “See, din’t I tell you? Din’t I? Why din’t y’lissen?”
    And it still doesn’t extinguish my regrets.
    Thanks, WK…now I’ll go watch another episode of ‘Shameless,’ and see Frank Gallagher remind me of…

    Yeah, thanks, WK..

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      dave says:

      The regrets, the regrets!

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    Claudio Meredith says:

    Based on Conrad’s masterwork, one of the most powerful lines in all film (n.b. Sheen is a devote Catholic):

    KURTZ IS STANDING OVER HIM. He is dressed in the black
    pajamas of the Vietcong. His face is made up in green-and-
    black camouflage paint. He disappears behind Willard,
    then reappears and drops something into Willard’s lap.
    Willard looks down and sees CHEF’S SEVERED HEAD in his

    Willard screams and struggles to jostle it out of his lap.
    It finally falls out.


    in the mud



    ******* Oh, Christ!*******


    Joost A. M. Meerloo M.D., Chief of the Psychological Department of the Netherlands Forces in England said this about simple faith vs thought control:

    “Our understanding of the conditioning process leads us also to an understanding of some of the paradoxical reactions found among victims of concentration camps and other prisoners. Often those with a rigid, simple belief were better able to withstand the continual barrage against their minds than were the flexible, sophisticated ones, full of doubt and inner conflicts. The simple man with deep-rooted, freely absorbed religious faith could exert a much greater inner resistance than could the complex. questioning intellectual. The refined intellectual is much more handicapped by the internal pros and cons.”

    Cheer up son, our mission has only just begun.


    The boat passes rows of skulls, flaming torches, men impaled
    on poles, etc.

    WILLARD (V.O.)
    Part of me was afraid of what I
    would find, and what I would do
    when I got there. I knew the risks.
    Or imagined I knew. But the thing
    I felt the most, much stringer
    than fear, was the desire to
    confront him.

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    steve w says:

    Those sentiments could have been written by one Conrad Black.

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    Pipes says:

    Here is one that I memorized and reflect on daily:

    “A little song. A little dance. A little seltzer down your pants.”…..Bozo the Clown.

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