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They say that Louis XIV had the inscription Ultima Ratio Regum cast into all the cannon of the French Army. It means “The Ultimate Argument of Kings,” and that always struck me as one of the most honest and up-front things any ruler or would-be ruler ever said. “We can dress it up prettier than this, but when it comes down to the unvarnished truth this is what it’s about: You’ll do as I say or I’ll send my goons to kill you.”
I thought about that for a long time. If there’s an ultimate argument, it seems only logical that there must be an ultimate answer. For years I thought the ultimate answer must be the bullets in my rifle, but it never seemed quite right. I’ve got bullets – he’s got frigging Cannon Balls. I mean, if there were three hundred million rifles throwing bullets at him, then maybe. But we all know that’s not going to happen. So if there’s an ultimate answer to his ultimate argument, it sure as hell ain’t bullets.
It finally came to me – and that’s when I abandoned the city and most of my stuff, and gave all that was behind me a good stiff Randian Shrug.
The ultimate answer to kings is not a bullet, but a belly laugh.
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Author Archives: Joel
Okay, so it’s definitely time to light the bedroom heater. Getting the pilot to light up is the only thing I dislike about this heater, getting the gas to the pilot flame is an endless PITA but otherwise it’s so … Continue reading
D&L are sort of trading downtime back and forth. She’s getting her strength back from chemo, and now he’s scheduled for some delayed surgery that will put him on crutches for a while. But winter won’t wait, the bitch, and … Continue reading
I knew when Tobie and I went for first walkie in the dark that the weather was quite unpleasantly cold, damp and windy. And there were occasional … bits of something … flashing by in the lamp beam. It was … Continue reading
Look what the July floods brought us! Not quite sure how to unwrap it and bring it home, it’s a bit much for my chainsaw. No way this is juniper, I’m assuming it’s cottonwood since AFAIK that’s the only actual … Continue reading
Okay, enough procrastination. Ian asked me to put a coat of stain on the exposed wood of his porch/sunshade/gazebo?-looking-thing, and I’ve been putting it off. Then when he actually paid me for having done so, I figured I should take … Continue reading
Tobie and I had a busy afternoon, heading up to T&S’s mesa in the Jeep for the last time, assuming they make it home as scheduled. We got home a little after five, he got his food and his evening … Continue reading
I’ve mentioned that an unexpected side effect of having lots of thermal mass in winter is that you really can’t afford to let it all get cold. So D&L burn their pellet stove 24/7 for almost six months in the … Continue reading
I bitch and moan about him, ’cause he drives me crazy, but all in all Tobie is a fine young man. He’s only the second puppy I’ve ever raised, but apparently they all need their treasure spot. Little Bear’s was … Continue reading
One day to go on the T&S gig, and the Jeep can do it with one engine cylinder tied behind its back. Yeah, only two days before the gig was supposed to start, guess who got another rat nest on … Continue reading
One bad thing you think you’re gonna kiss goodbye when you become a cedar rat is scheduling conflicts, particularly when none of the several things you’re supposed to accomplish simultaneously are optional. I’m certain you know exactly what I’m talking … Continue reading
Tobie didn’t get his morning Jeep ride to T&S’s yesterday, mostly because I was mad at him for the (bad dog) way he behaved during his morning walkie. Since I got back from T&S’s only to drive straight away again … Continue reading
Neighbor L has been done with her chemo for maybe a month now, and is starting to get some of her strength back. She was able to empty the whole pallet by herself, which means… …that we’re back to the … Continue reading
I’ve been really worried about this. I mothballed that chainsaw so long ago I was certain that the carb diaphragms were going to be stiff as boards, just because of course they were. And the only saw shop in town … Continue reading
I’ve got another T&S gig so mornings and evenings will find me across the plateau to the east and up and down their scary mesa. And I was on my way home from that this morning when I came upon … Continue reading
I had to go to town to pick up a package. I did not want to go to town, because it rained from Saturday to yesterday afternoon and the roads were going to be a sea of mud. But this … Continue reading
Slept like a baby almost all the way through last night… But that was because everything about the bedroom except the furnace is already in winter mode. And I’m starting to wonder if it isn’t time to light the furnace. … Continue reading
I woke several times during the night with rain blasting down on the metal roof. When I came fully awake at 5 it was … blasting down on the metal roof and that was bad, because step 1 after pulling … Continue reading
Right on schedule. Supposed to go right back to thunderstorms tomorrow. Fullscale Walky time! And may I say right here before I forget that I have a modest proposal: Tobieforchristsakegetoutofthemud is indeed a proper word and should be added to … Continue reading