The Repossession of America

“Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I’m not sure about the universe.”  – Albert Einstein

“Humour is a rubber sword – it allows you to make a point without drawing blood.”  – Mary Hirsch

 

While I do realize that the following is a bit out-dated and perhaps Britain has issues of its own at the present… Yet I couldn’t resist pulling this letter out of the files, dusting it off and sharing it. My chapeau is off to John Cleese for the medicine (laughter) he dispenses when we need it most, like now! 

Today, 14 July is Fête Nationale du 14 juillet (France). Outside of France, this is frequently referred to as Bastile Day. It is not Bastile day but it does mark the turning point of the French Revolution in 1789. The champagne and the wine will flow, music, and so much more. I’ve no doubt that each and every village will create a way to celebrate safely in this time of Covid-19. 

 

Britain is Repossessing the U.S.A.

A message from John Cleese  (British comedian)

To:  The  citizens of the United States of America:

 

In view of your failure to nominate competent candidates for President of the USA and thus to govern yourselves, we hereby give notice of the revocation of your independence, effective immediately.

Her Sovereign  Majesty Queen Elizabeth II will resume monarchical duties over all states, commonwealths, and territories (except Kansas, which she does not fancy).

Your new prime minister, Gordon Brown (now Boris Johnson), will appoint a governor for America without the need for further elections.

Congress and the Senate will be disbanded.

A questionnaire may be circulated next year to determine whether any of you noticed.

To aid in the transition to a British Crown Dependency, the following rules are introduced  with immediate effect:

You should look up ‘revocation’ in the Oxford English  Dictionary.

  1. Then look up aluminum, and check the pronunciation guide.  You will be amazed at just how wrongly you have been pronouncing it.
  2. The letter ‘U’  will be reinstated in words such as ‘favour’ and ‘neighbour.’  Likewise, you will learn to spell ‘doughnut’ without skipping half the letters, and the suffix -ize will be replaced by the suffix  -ise.

Generally, you will be expected to raise your vocabulary to acceptable levels  (look up ‘vocabulary’).

  1. Using the same 27 words interspersed with filler noises such as  ‘like’ and ‘you know’ is an unacceptable and inefficient form of communication.

There is no such thing as US English.  We will let Microsoft know on your behalf.  The Microsoft spell-checker will be adjusted to take account of the reinstated letter ‘u’ and the elimination of -ize.  You will relearn your original national anthem, God Save the Queen.

  1. July 4th will no longer be celebrated as a holiday.
  2. You will learn to resolve personal issues without using guns, lawyers, or therapists.  The fact that you need so many lawyers and therapists shows that you’re not adult enough to be independent.

Guns should only be handled by adults.  If you’re not adult enough to sort things out without suing someone or speaking to a therapist, then you’re not grown up enough to handle a gun.

  1. Therefore, you will no longer be allowed to own or carry anything more dangerous than a vegetable peeler.  A permit will be required if you wish to carry a vegetable peeler in public.
  2. All American cars are hereby banned.  They are crap and this is for your own good.  When we show you German cars, you will understand what we mean.

Holden Monaros are also approved.

  1. All intersections will be replaced with roundabouts, and you will start driving on the left with immediate effect.  At the same time, you will go metric with immediate effect and without the benefit of conversion tables. Both roundabouts and metrication will help you understand the British sense of humor.
  2. The Former USA  will adopt UK prices on petrol (which you have been calling gasoline) – roughly $6/US gallon.  Get used to it.
  3. You will learn to make real chips.  Those things you call French fries are not real chips, and those things you insist on calling potato chips are properly called crisps.  Real chips are thick-cut, fried in animal fat, and dressed not with catsup but with vinegar.
  4. The cold tasteless stuff you insist on calling beer is not actually beer at all.  Henceforth, only proper British Bitter will be referred to as beer, and European brews of known and accepted provenance will be referred to as Lager. South African beer is also acceptable as they are pound for pound the greatest sporting nation on earth and it can only be due to the beer.  They are also part of the British Commonwealth – see what it did for them. American brands will be referred to as Near-Frozen Gnat’s Urine so that all can be sold without risk of further confusion.
  5. Hollywood will be required occasionally to cast English actors as good guys.  Hollywood will also be required to cast English actors to play English characters. Watching Andie Macdowell attempt English dialogue in Four Weddings and a Funeral was an experience akin to having one’s ears removed with a cheese grater.
  6. You will cease playing American football.  There is only one kind of proper football; you call it soccer.  Those of you brave enough will, in time,  be allowed to play rugby (which has some similarities to American football but does not involve stopping for a rest every twenty seconds or wearing full kevlar body armour like a bunch of nancies).  Don’t try Rugby –  the South Africans and Kiwis will thrash you like they regularly thrash us.
  7. Further, you will stop playing baseball.  It is not reasonable to host an event called the World Series for a game which is not played outside of  America.  Since only 2.1% of you are aware that there is a world beyond your borders, your error is understandable.  You will learn cricket, and we will let you face the South Africans first to take the sting out of their deliveries.
  8. You must tell us who killed JFK. It’s been driving us mad.
  9. An internal revenue agent (i.e. tax collector) from Her Majesty’s  Government will be with you shortly to ensure the acquisition of all monies due  (backdated to  1776).
  10. Daily Tea Time begins promptly at 4 pm with proper cups, never mugs, with high-quality biscuits (cookies) and cakes; strawberries in season.

God save the Queen.

John  Cleese

Thank you John Cleese for offering the only remedy currently available for what ails millions of people (Laughter is still the best medicine.)

Bisous,

Léa

Night on the town

“People who are homeless are not social inadequates. They are people without homes.”    – Sheila McKechnie

“The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil, but because of those who look on and do nothing.” – Albert Einstein

“We think sometimes that poverty is only being hungry, naked, and homeless. The poverty of being unwanted, unloved, and uncared for is the greatest poverty. We must start in our own homes to remedy this kind of poverty.”    – Mother Teresa

 

Night on the town

 

Hunched slightly forward

He shuffles

From the steps

Of the coffee house

An old yarn cap

Pulled down

Hiding shaggy grey hair

Hands tremble

Clinging to a small paper cup

Hand out coffee

Black skin

Mingles with the night

His slight form

Hovers over

The un-cleared table

On the sidewalk

A ragged coat

Nearly swallows him

Turning cautiously

Side to side

He claims a half-eaten baguette

As his own

Huddled tightly

In a white plastic chair

He savors this feast

Morsel by morsel

Plucked from a hiding place

Beneath his arm

Tonight will be good

Without the pangs

Of hunger

He can brave the cold

 

Bisous,

Léa

Desiderata

“I see the world being slowly transformed into a wilderness; I hear the approaching thunder that one day, will destroy us too. I feel the suffering of millions. And yet, when I look up at the sky, I somehow feel that everything will change for the better, that this cruelty too shall end, that peace and tranquility will return once more.”      – Anne Frank

“Peace cannot be kept by force; but by understanding.”  – Albert Einstein

The following, I read as a young child. I’ve carried it with me for a very long time. It was always there, within the folds of my heart. It remained a compass for my journey. I’ve never been good at following the main path. I feel strongly about its message and feel the need to share it today. Thank you Max Ehrmann for your words and thank you for reading on.

Desiderata

Go placidly amid the noise and haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surrender
be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
and listen to others,
even the dull and the ignorant;
they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons,
they are vexations to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others,
you may become vain and bitter;
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs;
for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals;
and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Be yourself.
Especially, do not feign affection.
Neither be cynical about love;
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment
it is as perennial as the grass.
Take kindly the counsel of the years,
gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.
But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.
Beyond a wholesome discipline,
be gentle with yourself.
You are a child of the universe,
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.
Therefore be at peace with God,
whatever you conceive Him to be,
and whatever your labors and aspirations,
in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.
With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Be cheerful.
Strive to be happy.
Max Ehrmann, Desiderata, Copyright 1952.

 

Paix, Peace, Shalom et Bisous,

Léa

Global Restructuring

“Read, every day, something no one else is reading.  Think, every day, something no one else is thinking.  Do, every day, something no one else would be silly enough to do.  It is bad for the mind to continually be part of unanimity.”  – Christopher Morley

“Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocrities.  The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary.”                              – Albert Einstein

“Problems cannot be solved by the same level of thinking that created them.”                     – Albert Einstein

Global Restructuring

I

The young man

Stands expressionless

In front of the shoppe

That sells toys and gadgets

Hawking the plastic pistol

Shooting uniform translucent opals

En mass

II

I sigh

Remembering

The child who danced

And twirled with glee

Waving the tiny looped

Magic wand

Christening each wonder

As she creates it

Biding sweet release

Bisous,

Léa