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With his head out in Andromeda… Paul Kantner
I mentioned this is going to continue to happen with perhaps alarming frequency as we continue to age just last week. Another of the soundtrack of my life.
With Jefferson Airplane, Kantner helped pioneer the oft-imitated psychedelic sound: simple, fuzzy guitar lines steeped in dreamlike reverb. The group formed in 1965 and, within a few years, scored hits with “Somebody to Love” and “White Rabbit.” In their first run, five of the band’s seven albums went gold, including 1967’s Surrealistic Pillow and 1968’s Crown of Creation.
Verging on a breakup in the early Seventies, Kantner recorded a solo album, Blows Against the Empire, with Jefferson Airplane singer Grace Slick [and a who’s who list of San Franciscan artists], crediting it to Paul Kantner and Jefferson Starship. The album was nominated for a Hugo Award presented to the best science-fiction and fantasy works.
I too had forgotten the Hugo Award.
We were Volunteers.
You might think I don’t think of these things, but I do. I am sorry man, but I gave you all that was given me, and it’s not as if my life has been… groovy. I hope this day finds you, and your mother, as well as can be.
I lost friends eight years ago to Clinton Derangement Syndrome, or more accurately a number of this venue who had previously enjoyed my respect no longer enjoyed that respect. It’s happening again. It was bad eight years ago, now it’s downright republican. And may well end my wavering towards the democrat if Sanders tops the ticket, and result in a stoic resolution to not vote the democrat even if Bernie tops the ticket.
It was bad eight years ago, today it is downright republican.
… It’s hard to understand why Christmas came to be a big deal even for people who have never stepped foot inside a church without understanding the context. And the context — which does predate Christianity by thousands of years — is that December kicks off winter in the Northern hemisphere. And for most of human history, winter meant a bunch of us were going to freaking die.
We’re so detached from that idea today, when the cold means nothing more than mild annoyance and sometimes slippery roads, that it’s hard to grasp how recentthis was, and that this was the way of things for virtually all of human history. Every year, you headed into winter with just enough stored food and fuel to get by. The old and the sick knew they might not make it through, and an especially harsh winter could mean no one would feel the sun’s warmth ever again. Every year, you watched all of the plants turn brown and shrivel into husks, followed by an unrelenting darkness and cold that threatened to swallow you and everything you love.
And looking back at that, we see an awesome little portrait of exactly how much humans kick ass. Every year, you see, winter arrived with a short day followed by the longest night of the year (aka the winter solstice), and since before recorded history, humans have been celebrating that day with a feast, or festival, or outright debauchery. On that longest night before the frozen mini-apocalypse, in all times and places you would find light and song and dancing and food. Cattle would be slaughtered (to avoid having to feed all of them through the winter), families would travel to be together, and wine would flow. Precious supplies were dedicated to making decorations and gifts — frivolous things, good for nothing other than making each other happy.
These celebrations went by many names over the millennia, and everyone did it their own way. But deep down, I think the message was always the same: “We made it through another year, some of us won’t see spring, let’s spend a few days reminding each other of what’s good about humanity.”…
Winter solstice is an astronomical phenomenon marking the shortest day and the longest night of the year. In the Northern Hemisphere this is the December solstice and in the Southern Hemisphere this is the June solstice.
The axial tilt of Earth and gyroscopic effects of its daily rotation mean that the two opposite points in the sky to which the Earth’s axis of rotation points change very slowly (making a complete circle approximately every 26,000 years). As the Earth follows its orbit around the Sun, the polar hemisphere that faced away from the Sun, experiencing winter, will, in half a year, face towards the Sun and experience summer. This is because the two hemispheres face opposite directions along Earth’s axis, and so as one polar hemisphere experiences winter, the other experiences summer.
More evident from high latitudes, a hemisphere’s winter solstice occurs on the shortest day and longest night of the year, when the sun’s daily maximum elevation in the sky is at its lowest. The winter solstice itself lasts only a moment in time, so other terms are used for the day on which it occurs, such as “midwinter”, or the “shortest day”. It is often considered the “extreme of winter” (Dongzhi in the Chinese calendar). In meteorology, winter in the Northern Hemisphere spans the entire period of December through February.
The seasonal significance of the winter solstice is in the reversal of the gradual lengthening of nights and shortening of days. The earliest sunset and latest sunrise dates differ from winter solstice, however, and these depend on latitude, due to the variation in the solar day throughout the year caused by the Earth’s elliptical orbit (see earliest and latest sunrise and sunset).
Worldwide, interpretation of the event has varied across cultures, but many have held a recognition of rebirth, involving holidays, festivals, gatherings, rituals or other celebrations around that time.
Santa Claus, Saint Nicholas, Saint Nick, Father Christmas, Kris Kringle or simply Santa is a figure with historical origins who, in many Western cultures, bring gifts to the homes of good children on 24 December, the night before Christmas Day. The modern Santa Claus is derived from the British figure of Father Christmas, the Dutch figure of Sinterklaas, and Saint Nicholas, the historical Greek bishop and gift-giver of Myra. During the Christianization of Germanic Europe, this figure may also have absorbed elements of the god Odin, who was associated with the Germanic pagan midwinter event of Yule and led the Wild Hunt, a ghostly procession through the sky.
Santa Claus is generally depicted as a portly, joyous, white-bearded man—sometimes with spectacles—wearing a red coat with white collar and cuffs, white-cuffed red trousers, and black leather belt and boots and who carries a bag full of gifts for children. Images of him rarely have a beard with no moustache. This image became popular in the United States and Canada in the 19th century due to the significant influence of the 1823 poem “A Visit From St. Nicholas” and of caricaturist and political cartoonist Thomas Nast. This image has been maintained and reinforced throughsong, radio, television, children’s books and films.
The Santa Claus we all know and love — that big, jolly man in the red suit with a white beard — didn’t always look that way. In fact, many people are surprised to learn that prior to 1931, Santa was depicted as everything from a tall gaunt man to a spooky-looking elf. He has donned a bishop’s robe and a Norse huntsman’s animal skin. In fact, when Civil War cartoonist Thomas Nast drew Santa Claus for Harper’s Weekly in 1862, Santa was a small elflike figure who supported the Union. Nast continued to draw Santa for 30 years, changing the color of his coat from tan to the red he’s known for today.
From 1931 to 1964, Coca-Cola advertising showed Santa delivering toys (and playing with them!), pausing to read a letter and enjoy a Coke, visiting with the children who stayed up to greet him, and raiding the refrigerators at a number of homes (which could get him shot today).
Santa Claus has been believed to make a list of children throughout the world, categorizing them according to their behavior (“naughty” or “nice”) and to deliver presents, including toys, and candy to all of the well-behaved children in the world, and sometimes coal to the naughty children, on the single night of Christmas Eve. He accomplishes this feat with the aid of the elves who make the toys in the workshop and the flying reindeer who pull his sleigh. He is commonly portrayed as living at the North Pole and saying “ho ho ho” often.
Ha ha ha. Selling shit to rubes. Hmmm… Where’d they learn that?
It’s winter. You are a clear and present danger to my grandchildren’s future.
Seriously, look at these pussies, look at those man-tits!
Look at those man-tits! Look at those fat asses, fat bellies, fat cheeks, chins and jowls, thighs, ankles and asses(did I mention asses?); hairless, pink-skin prone to lesions, boils and burns; flat feet, weak eyes, weak ears, weaker brains subject to irrational dependencies upon adolescent fairy tales to justify sex with children and keep the bed dry at night, stink like a restaurant grease pit on a hundred degree day all holding on to their little pee-pees like maybe they’re gonna lose it.
Go ahead, point your little pop-guns at the US Army.
I am laughing, at the “superiority”.
Update: The Rude One e-mails “it’s a woman!” Oops. Oh-well, they are pussies.
With no time left to start again.
Don McLean, American Pie.
About “gay marriage” and the Supreme Courts’ upholding of the constitutionality of equality… after three divorces, a couple of ex-long-term girlfriends and an un-countable number of one night stands; five children and nine grand-children, I just don’t see how this applies to me.
Why is it the only thing the Retards seem to think about is homosexual sex?