[MD] Rest In Peace Mr Pirsig
david at goodmetaphysics.com
Thu Apr 27 05:18:24 PDT 2017
Great words Dan!
> On Apr 27, 2017, at 5:29 PM, Dan Glover <daneglover at gmail.com> wrote:
> I'm thinking how in 1974 I found this book with a funny title clinging
> to one of those metal racks they used to store books on. You know. The
> kind that you could spin around to see all of the titles available. Do
> they still have them? Maybe they do. I hope so. I haven't been in a
> bookstore for like the next thing to forever what with Amazon and all.
> If I remember right I found the book in a grocery store by the
> checkout aisle. A store that closed a long long time ago. That was
> back before they had Walmarts and box stores on every corner and you'd
> go down to the local neighborhood grocery and buy your milk and bread
> and sometimes a book or two if you had enough money. I think it cost a
> buck ninety five but can't remember for sure. Thereabouts, anyhow. It
> was by an author I'd never heard of before and yeah I thought I could
> well be wasting my money but the book called to me.
> I spent the next week maybe two reading the book mostly while sitting
> at a picnic table that sorely needed paint down at the park (under
> majestic oak trees that would be uprooted the following year when an
> F-5 tornado plowed through) over numerous bottles of cheap but
> exceedingly potent wine and to say I was taken aback is a bit of a
> misnomer. I'd up till that time read lots of books by many different
> writers but absolutely none like that. The author seemed to be saying
> something important but I couldn't quite say exactly what. Hell. I'd
> never been to college. Never even finished high school. I had no way
> of relating to what the author was going on about what with Aristotle
> and Chautauquas and dripping faucets and yet I understood on some
> visceral level that hey maybe there might just be more to life than
> hanging out in bars and partying until the moon said goodnight and
> consorting with others of low repute like me.
> I'd like to say the book completely changed my life. How I mended my
> wayward ways, quit drinking and partying, went back to school, and
> made something of myself. Only I didn't. It didn't. The book. Someone
> saw it sitting on my shelf one day and asked to borrow it and I said
> here knowing I'd never get it back and how they wouldn't read it
> because they thought it was about motorcycle maintenance and I knew it
> wasn't. Instead, the years drifted by each one moving a little faster
> than the last like maybe I was falling head first into an unseen black
> hole and me getting stretched out a little more with every passing
> moment and then one day I noticed whenever I started into reading the
> obituaries, a morbid habit I do not recommend, about my old friends
> one by one and how they ended their lives in pretty much the same
> ignominious fashion. The obits always read how they lived their life
> on their own terms and how they died doing what they loved. I wondered
> if they really loved drowning in their own vomit all that much. I sort
> of doubted it but hey. Who knows.
> Then I wake up one morning with some biker-looking chick I never saw
> before lying in bed beside me and I'm fairly sure if I lift the covers
> and look she'll be naked because yep I am and there're empty gin and
> whiskey and beer bottles strewn about the house interspersed with
> cheap but potent and exceedingly empty wine bottles and me hung over
> like a mofo as usual, head pounding stomach queasy eyes like
> sandpaper, and it is 1995 and I'm forty-something instead of
> twenty-something and when I stumble to the bathroom to puke and happen
> to glance into the mirror to make sure I don't have any on me my beard
> is no longer a crisp black but rapidly turning white and the same with
> my hair. Just like that. It was like I blinked. And the people I used
> to know are gone and I'm still living the same lame life only all the
> people hanging in the bars are like my kids' age and I just don't fit
> in any longer. So then the internet is just beginning to happen. Since
> there isn't much else to do I get a provider and play around with the
> web some but nothing really appeals all that much. Until a couple
> years later when someone I meet in a chatroom suggests how I might
> like the Lila Squad.
> What is the Lila Squad? I asked. Just check it out, he said. Well,
> okay. So I did. And lo. They're discussing a book called Lila written
> by the same author I read way back in 1974. I didn't realize he'd
> written a second novel. So I bought it. Mass-market paperback. One of
> my first purchases on Amazon but not the last. O.M.G. I was hooked all
> over again. Only those folks in the Lila Squad, well, they were like,
> smart. Not anything like me. All I knew how to do was talk smack. But
> that didn't stop me. I finished reading Lila and jumped into the fray.
> Some of the Lila Squad members were downright mean to me. You could
> even say rude. Not that I could blame them what with them being all
> college-educated and intelligent and doubtlessly used to going around
> looking and smelling and speaking lots better than I did. Most of the
> members ignored me. Again. Not that I could blame them. I mean,
> really. But a few were actually nice to me. Like they might even think
> I had something to say, though I pretty much figured they were simply
> placating me. Still. It was something to hang my battered hat upon.
> So if I remember right, things started getting better after that. Oh,
> not all at once. There were still the blackouts and mornings when I'd
> wake and whenever I looked my car wouldn't be in the driveway and I'd
> have no idea how I got home and my wallet would be empty and these
> strange babes would be lying in bed next to me but those mornings
> seemed to draw out with more days between them than before. And then a
> miracle happened. Honestly. It's the only way I can describe it.
> Bodvar Skutvik wrote to say how Robert Pirsig had discovered the book
> that Bo insisted I put together which I named Lila's Child and how he
> was making notes on it. I was pretty sure Bo was having me on. Only he
> swore how he wasn't. All of a sudden, a realization came over me. How
> I might be able to put together a real book. Me. A low-life no count
> loser. So I asked Bo if he'd ask Robert Pirsig if he might want to
> share those notes. You know. With me. And Bo said oh no. No way, dude.
> Ain't gonna happen. Absolutely not. But next thing I know. Bo is
> writing me saying how okay whenever you finish redoing the Lila's
> Child manuscript (which I realized sadly needed doing) to send a copy
> to Robert Pirsig and he'd take a look.
> All of a sudden, I had a purpose. Thank you, Robert Pirsig.
> On Wed, Apr 26, 2017 at 8:19 AM, Horse <horse at darkstar.uk.net> wrote:
>> Hi All
>> Many of you will have heard by now that Robert Pirsig passed away on Monday
>> 24th April 2017.
>> My apologies for not posting sooner.
>> If you wish to leave any thoughts about Mr Pirsig then please feel free to
>> post here.
>> My own thoughts are that I am proud to have helped, even in a small way, to
>> get Pirsig's message out to the world.
>> I know that he used to read our discussions on these lists and was pleased
>> that there were so many people involved over the years.
>> Robert Pirsig made a difference to our world and made it a better world with
>> his work and his presence.
>> I will miss him greatly.
>> "Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments
>> that take our breath away."
>> — Bob Moorehead
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