Thursday, September 18, 2014

Sardonic Smiles

To be sane, he held, was either to be sedated by melancholy or activated by hysteria, two responses which were 'always and equally warranted for those of sound insight'. All others were irrational, merely symptoms of imaginations left idle, of memories out of work. And above these mundane responses, the only elevation allowable, the only valid transcendence, was a sardonic one: a bliss that annihilated the universe with jeers of dark joy, a mindful ecstasy. Anything else in the way of 'mysticism' was a sign of deviation or distraction, and a heresy to the obvious. (“The Medusa”)”
― Thomas Ligotti
Providing balance for a seemingly ever-growing motivation and self-help industry, one company came up, around a decade ago, with a book titled "The Art of Demotivation". There were some related products: lithographs, mugs, etc. The following illustrations, with their own captions, are from that company's website Despair Inc - there are other, similar, pictures there, in "demotivational" vein. I picked the 12 below because they whispered to me "zodiac sign keywords" (not Sun signs!) These come from an archived 2007 post by the way, they're good for a shake-out and re-airing in 2014, when a sardonic grin is probably the best we can hope to raise - and better than nothing - bearing in mind current news items.

So.....tongue firmly in cheek, of course!

 ARIES - risk taking

 TAURUS - unchanging

 GEMINI - communicating

 CANCER ~ clinging

 LEO - leading

VIRGO - perfectionist

 LIBRA - making peace

 SCORPIO - powerful

 SAGITTARIUS - optimism

 CAPRICORN - money-making

 AQUARIUS - inquiring

 PISCES - dreaming


mike said...

I very much enjoyed those, Twilight, and you did a great job of zodiac matching. I had no idea de-motivational posters-statements existed, but I should have known that somewhere out there, someone had it covered. Motivational posters were very trendy in the late '80s and '90s and they survive even to this day...they gag me. A carry-over from the "Johnathan Livingston Seagull" titles.

I recognized years ago that the more motivational posters evident in an establishment, the more its dysfunctional hegemony. "9 to 5" is one of my favorite comedic movies showcasing the hypocrisy of a job and the need for motivational posters.

“I love my job. I love the pay!
~I love it more and more each day.
~I love my boss, he is the best!
~I love his boss and all the rest.

~I love my office and its location. I hate to have to go on vacation.
~I love my furniture, drab and grey, and piles of paper that grow each day!
~I think my job is swell, there's nothing else I love so well.
~I love to work among my peers, I love their leers, and jeers, and sneers.
~I love my computer and its software; I hug it often though it won't care.
~I love each program and every file, I'd love them more if they worked a while.

~I'm happy to be here. I am. I am.
~I'm the happiest slave of the Firm, I am.
~I love this work. I love these chores.
~I love the meetings with deadly bores.
~I love my job - I'll say it again - I even love those friendly men.
~Those friendly men who've come today, in clean white coats to take me away!!!!!” Dr. Seuss

LB said...

Agree with mike, Twilight. You did a solid job of matching posters with signs.:)

mike ~ Thanks for including the Dr. Seuss poem. I love Dr. Seuss wisdom, still own a few of his books! The last line reminded me of something else from way back when. Anyone else remember this catchy tune, "They're Coming to Take Me Away, Ha-Haaa?"

Twilight said...

mike ~ Thanks. :-)
I remember 9 to 5 - good movie!

LOL! The only motivational material we had on our notice board at work was put there by the office wag I think - that old saying:

When you're up to your neck (but our version said "arse "- US "ass") in alligators, it's easy to forget you came to drain the swamp

Super poem. Good old Dr Seuss - a true original!

Twilight said...

LB ~ Thank you!

Oh yes, I remember that song...often quoted at work when things got chaotic, I seem to recall. :-)

Twilight said...

I've just logged on and opened up Twitter, and found a couple of LOLs re the Scottish thing, which I'll share: I follow a tweeter known as "God"
(God ‏@TheTweetOfGod )
Two tweets from past few hours:

For the next few hours, the United Kingdom will live in a state of Schrödinger’s kilt.
No matter what happens, I will continue saving the Queen

Twilight said...

Erm - just realised maybe the 2nd one won't be familiar...
First line of British national anthem

"God save our gracious Queen"

mike (again) said...

A new Dr Seuss book for your collection, LB:
"A new book – 'Horton and the Kwuggerbug and More Lost Stories' – that hit stores Tuesday includes four long-lost Seuss yarns that originally appeared in Redbook in the 1950s. Geisel was a regular contributor to the magazine, writing one Dr. Seuss story a month, Cathy Goldsmith, an associate publishing director at Random House, told NPR."

"They're Coming to Take Me Away" was a top hit in 1966...the Uranus-Pluto conjunction...LOL. Fitting for the UK vote, today:
"...he was able to alter the pitch of a recording without changing the tempo - for example, making voices higher or lower. From this came the idea for a song based on the rhythm of the old Scottish tune 'The Campbells Are Coming'.",_Ha-Haaa!

I don't Tweet, but I do review God's tweets on occasion, since you first quoted Him, Twilight. He-she is hilarious and usually spot-on...Schroedinger's kilt is another.

ex-Chomp said...

Ah Ah , very fantastic, especially that of Capricorn, which fits so much to the very present world situation....

Twilight said...

ex-Chomp ~ I was very pleased with that one too.

LB said...

mike ~ How interesting about the long-lost collection. Thanks!

Rain-in-the-Face said...

As a Pisces Sun, I can relate to the splashdown in the ocean of reality and Joe Campbell's pithier observation: mystics swim in the same waters that schizophrenics drown.

Shark biscuits anyone?

Twilight said...

Rain-in-the-Face ~ hi there!

LOL! Something I read a few weeks ago, regarding that lost MH370 plane comes to mind. When an aircraft crashes into the sea it can either dive in nose-first, straight to the bottom, or, if expertly handled it could land on the surface and float, intact for some time.
Somewhat akin to Campbell's schizopherenic v. mystic contrast. :-)