T   P   O
The Patient Ox (aka Hénock Gugsa)

G r e e t i n g s !

** TPO **
A personal blog with diverse topicality and multiple interests!

On the menu ... politics, music, poetry, and other good stuff.
There is humor, but there is blunt seriousness here as well!

Parfois, on parle français ici aussi. Je suis un francophile .... Bienvenue à tous!

* Your comments and evaluations are appreciated ! *

Monday, March 30, 2020

Sunday, March 29, 2020

"The Idea of Others" - by Brenda Shaughnessy

Rats - the idea of others !

"The Idea of Others"
Brenda Shaughnessy * 

An animal is scritching in the wall behind my bed.  At first I thought it was some kind of water crackling in a heating pipe but what kind of water stops when you thump the wall?  I don’t mean to be mean, I mean to make it scurry off, to send it to scritch somewhere I can’t hear.

No, I’m not afraid—it is small, by the sound of its scritch.  I’m not in Room 101, not worried about a gnarled whiskered rodent face chewing my eyelids in my sleep.  I know these small animals, if it is an animal, are generally afraid of big, intelligent me so far up the food chain, capable of terrible violence if frightened.  I know they know they can never physically get me and are only after a crumb or a drop, like everyone really.

No, I’m trying to protect my peace of mind, my inner life, my pest-free dreams, from these unseen labors in a frenzy in the wall behind my bed.  I was going to say it drives me mad and that is its fault, or was I going to say who am I to judge the urges and intensities of another species?

What I’ll say instead is that I am part of the universe, privy to sounds parallel but unreachable, and on some other level, that I know I am alive, factually, unloving and alone.


 * Excerpted from: "The Octopus Museum" - Copyright © 2019 by Brenda Shaughnessy
Source: lithub.com

Commentary by Hénock Gugsa : ..............
This is one of those "free verse" poems that are magical and thought-provoking. 
In order to appreciate it, one must not just read it once and let it go.  It must be read more than once, over and over, until it thoroughly sinks in and absorbs you completely.
Strangely enough, I also find this poem quite liberating and empowering in some way.  It helps me not to be preoccupied with myself ... or crudely put, it takes me out of myself!

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Back in the day, .... ~ by Hénock Gugsa

EAL icon logo

Back in the day, .... 
~ by Hénock Gugsa ~
A Youthful, Indignant Response!
Back in the day when Ethiopian Airlines was practically totally managed and run by Americans from TWA, I was just a mere Transportation Agent. 

One day, a flight from Europe arrived with an unaccompanied child aboard that needed special handling. The telecom message arrived kind of late and did not get to me as I was the one assigned to receive and handle all incoming flights' passengers.

As it happened, one of the passengers aboard that same flight as the child's was one of those TWA hotshots. He was Director of Passenger (Customer) Relations at Ethiopian Airlines. This was 1970.

So then, this gentleman frantically grabbed me in the arrival hall and started to berate me for "not having attended to the child's needs immediately".  As I said earlier, I was not aware of the discrepancy because I had not received the telecom message in time.  At any rate, this man publicly shamed me harshly and ended his criticism with: That's what you are paid for, isn't it?

Well, that broke the camel's back.  I did not say anything back to him then.  But that afternoon, after work, I sat down at home and wrote a grievance letter to the "gentle" man and mailed it to his house. In the letter, I said that he committed several things that were unprofessional and wrong in his rant that morning.  I pointed out the following:

1) He did not follow the correct procedure of chain-of-command. He should have gotten hold of my supervisor and inquired why the child was not attended to immediately.
2) He should not have bawled me out in the open publicly, thus giving a very bad image of the company.  He himself was a bad employee in that sense.
3) I am not a "whore" to be addressed that way.
4) He should remember that he is a foreigner in Ethiopia and that he should respect people and the culture of Ethiopians [who are more civilized and more polite than his countrymen].

Two weeks later, my supervisor (a fellow Ethiopian), called me in to his office.  He had a copy of my letter on his desk.  But, he was not irate or anything.  He asked me why I wrote that letter and why I did not come to him with my complaint first.  I said that the matter was of a personal nature since the addressee had verbally attacked me himself.  So then, my supervisor asked me to write a formal apology letter because the [idiot] was upset as were all of the top brass.  I said no and explained that I was the aggrieved party, I should be the one getting an apology.  My supervisor was flustered , but I suspect deep down he was on my side.  So, after talking to him, I went back to my duties.  I never heard about the matter ever again, and I definitely was not penalized.
© Hénock Gugsa 🤔 👍 😀

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

COVID-19 is President ! - by TPO

COVID-19 is President ! 
- by TPO -

===>  Trump is not the president now ; COVID-19 is !!!   <===

It dictates everything and everybody now.  It pays no never mind to any politician (republican or democrat), to Wall Street, to billionaires or zillionaires, to religious heads and political pundits of every stripe.

The only thing that may have a sway on this pandemic is SCIENCE !  Trump doesn't know the first thing about science, namely the systematic application of reason based on known facts and observed reality.

You approach science with humility.  Trial and error is paramount while concensus of the experiments' findings is gathered and strategies are formulated.  There is no room for dunderheads and blustery fools here !

Monday, March 23, 2020

A Little Adventure Story ~ by Hénock Gugsa

(Curie : 1995 - 2013 // Biffy : 1995 - 2011)

A little adventure story from the past !

About 25 years back, I left some trash in a paper grocery bag right outside my apartment door for just a few minutes while I had to go back inside for something.  When I came back out two or three minutes later, the bag was gone.  It wasn't where I left it ... I looked around and found it down one flight of stairs in a corner.  The bag had been opened, but none of the contents was taken. 

I had the biggest laugh of my life because ... there was nothing in the bag but 3 days' worth of cat poop from my two cats' litter box which I had cleaned out earlier that morning.  I was trying to imagine the look on the thief's face when he (she) opened the bag to check out the loot !!!  😀😁😂
© Hénock Gugsa - 3/23/2020


Friday, March 13, 2020

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Responding to: On Ryan, Cheney called it! ~ by M.A. Thiessen

Ryan, a typical Republican hypocrite !

Washington Post / Letters in response to article: 
"On Ryan, Cheney called it"  - M.A. Thiessen 8/13/12
by alexafolet (11:33 AM CDT) 

Paul Ryan has famously said that he thinks Social Security has become "a hammock, which lulls able-bodied people into lives of complacency and dependency".

So he wants my 82 year old grandma to get off her lazy butt and get a job. But Ryan himself has been "working" for the government his entire life, he's never even had a real job.

"Perhaps Paul Ryan just wanted to take the edge off with a glass of red wine at dinner on Tuesday night.

The Wisconsin Republican was spotted out to dinner at Bistro Bis, a fancy restaurant near Union Station, drinking a glass of $350 wine. Ryan was dining with two economists, and not one, but two bottles of the pricey pinot noir were ordered to the table, Talking Points Memo reports.

At a nearby table, Susan Feinberg, a professor of business at Rutgers who was dining out with her husband for her birthday, was outraged by the expensive order. "We were just stunned," she told TPM. "I was an economist, so I started doing the envelope calculations and quickly figured out that those two bottles of wine was more than a two-income working family making minimum wage earned in a week."
Source: http://www.politico.com/blogs/click/0711/Paul_Ryan_sips_expensive_wine.html

Even Reagan knew the truth and did not mess with Social Security !

Tuesday, March 3, 2020

Count That Day Lost ~ by George Eliot

Count That Day Lost
George Eliot 
(a.k.a Mary Ann Evans 1819-1880) 
If you sit down at set of sun
And count the acts that you have done,
And, counting, find
One self-denying deed, one word
That eased the heart of him who heard,
One glance most kind
That fell like sunshine where it went --
Then you may count that day well spent.

But if, through all the livelong day,
You've cheered no heart, by yea or nay --
If, through it all
You've nothing done that you can trace
That brought the sunshine to one face--
No act most small
That helped some soul and nothing cost --
Then count that day as worse than lost.

This poem is in the public domain.
[Source: http://www.yourdailypoem.com/listpoem.jsp?poem_id=178]