the show: 03-01-07

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[Intro by one guy sitting, playing guitar.] Well good morning sport racers, welcome to the show. Ze Frank. (sung)

[Ze:]: When I arrived in St. Louis two days ago, my baggage didn't arrive with me.

Talking to the lady behind the counter was like talking to flogged meat.

I don't think that I was the first pissed off person she'd seen that day.

These little bar codes don't seem to do much and the best she could offer is that it might be on the next flight.

UPS should handle baggage, at least they can track where stuff is.

My bags showed up the next morning, all shook up with a strap missing.

The poor thing had to spend the night in Newark with a bunch of shady duffle bags with their non-TSA compliant locks.

The whole thing left me with an itch, and I tried to scratch it the only way I could.

Imagining conversations with that lady behind the counter:

Oh yeah? How'd you like it if I lost your luggage?
Reaching over the counter and grabbing her phone and saying, I'll give this back when you return what's mine.

Thinking like that's like biting down on a sore lip: it doesn't make the pain go away, but it feels good.

Made me think of an article I read on Robert Mugabe.

Mugabe spent ten years biting his lip in a prison in Rhodesia.

When he emerged he fought for his country's independence, and Rhodesia became Zimbabwe.

Once in power Mugabe tried to scratch his itch in a different way: jailing and killing people who he thought had wronged him, executing much needed land reform with a certian vengence.

During his twenty-seven year rule, Zimbabwe's economy has been reduced to shambles.

But two weeks ago he threw a party for his eighty-third birthday just days after the country's bakerys had shut down due to government price control.

Demonstrations were held and they were squashed and a local vegetable seller in Harare said quote, "He has the guts to eat and drink while we're suffering like this, let him enjoy. Every dog has its day. We shall have ours."

Biting his lip.

I'd always imagined watching a dog have its day would be kind of fun.

Like the kind of day Clifford would have.

But Erasmus says the saying came about as the result of the death of the Greek playwright Euripides, who may or may not have been killed by a pack of dogs loosed upon him by a rival.

Eu-rip-i-des, you better buy me new ones, or I'll rip-a-dose. Sorry.

Some people say that the threat of revenge holds societies together. Maybe that's why forums are prone to such ass-hattery.

Back in Euripides' time revenge came back at'cha hard. Winning armies would decimate, lining up the enemy and killing every tenth male.

Lucky they didn't operate in base-three, jokes for nerds.

Back when vengeance was served tenfold, an eye for an eye didn't look that bad. But an eye for an eye has its own problems:

First off it's like trying to scratch an itch by raking someone else's back.
And second, finding equality in punishment isn't always that easy to do. The remainders tend to make things spiral out of control.

In a study conducted at the University College of London, volunteers' fingers were hooked up with pressure sensors.

The researcher touched the first volunteer and instructed him to touch the second with equal force.

The second volunteer was supposed to respond back to the first volunteer in kind, and so on.

What they found was that each response was, on average, forty percent more forceful than the last.

A touch became a poke became a shove.

Feed forward, spiral into chaos.

The Sunnis and the Shia.

The Tutsis and the Hutus.

The Gandolfinis and the New York mob.

The law and rational thought is supposed to stand in its way.

But we carry it with us like baggage.

Just ask most people what they would do if someone intentionally harmed someone they loved.

There's a binary flip there, from reason to chaos.

My guess is the answer is somewhere in the middle, between doing nothing and lashing out.

It's a pity that the word 'forget' was tied to 'forgive', it's just not that practical.

Like trying to forget an itch.

Maybe it takes time, finding small and measured ways to scratch:

writing a letter to American Airlines
making a video about it.

That's why I'm amazed by places like Rwanda and South Africa that are trying to move forward, but slowly, so they don't spin out of control.

Wishing that their baggage could get lost ... or something like that. You know, with bags. Just tie it back to the beginning.

[gestures with finger, nodding] Make it a neat little package.

Oh no! The illusion is gone. I will hide behind this cucumber.

It was going so well, and you had to bring the bags back into it.

Love is like baggage.


This show's sponsors - Gimme some candy

Image:theshow-sponsor-3-0.gif    4 the St. Louis effort. Thanks, Ze. catman

Image:theshow-sponsor-3-0.gif    thanks

Image:theshow-sponsor-3-0.gif    For Ray... THANK YOU for your BEAUTIFUL words

Image:theshow-sponsor-2-4.gif    and Bob's your uncle!

Image:theshow-sponsor-2-4.gif    Mahat (sp?) to all you sportsracers and to you Ze!

Image:theshow-sponsor-1-1.gif    thank you, Ze, for being yourself

Image:theshow-sponsor-2-4.gif    Thanks for all the laughs, Ze -- Goob

Image:theshow-sponsor-2-3.gif    what's next?

Image:theshow-sponsor-2-3.gif    Full circle: ray, ze, loa, ze, ray

Image:theshow-sponsor-2-0.gif    Ze, thks 4 The Show + place 4 Ray projects to grow

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