Page 291 of 363

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sun Jun 02, 2019 1:17 am
by iambiguous
Claude Monet

Every day I discover more and more beautiful things. It’s enough to drive one mad. I have such a desire to do everything, my head is bursting with it.

Would that I had this problem, he thought.

It is a tragedy that we live in a world where physical courage is so common, and moral courage is so rare.

Today, of course, it's the Republicans. You know, if you believe Rachel Maddow.

Everything changes, even stone.

So paint it while you can.

The critic asks: And what, sir, is the subject matter of that painting?
The subject matter, my dear good fellow, is the light.

The critic asks: I mean the subject matter after that.

It is better to have done something than to have been someone.

He wondered if both were possible.

My only desire is an intimate infusion with nature, and the only fate I wish is to have worked and lived in harmony with her laws.

Of course we have our own rendition of that here too.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sun Jun 02, 2019 6:42 pm
by iambiguous
Harlan Coben

Rumors always hardened to facts. Accusations are convictions in the public mind. You are guilty until proven innocent.

Sex crimes in particular. As we all know.

It's not the dead even. They're gone. Nothing you can do about that. It's what's left behind - the echo.

Some considerably louder [and longer] than others.

There was an old joke about being left on a deserted island with an editor. You are starving. All you have left is a glass of orange juice. Days pass. You are near death. You are about to drink the juice when the editor grabs the glass from your hand and pees into it. You look at him, stunned . "There," the editor says, handing you the glass. "It just needed a little tweaking.”

Let's pin down how funny it is.

Grief is devastating, all-consuming. But grief merely visits friends, even the closest. It stays much longer, probably forever, with the family, but that was probably how it should be.

Trust me: Not all families.

They - bliss and fear - are constant companions. Rarely does one venture out without the other.

Unless you take them off the leash.

We get mad at someone for cutting us off in traffic or for taking too long to order at Starbucks or for not responding exactly as we see fit, and we have no idea that behind their facade, they may be dealing with some industrial-strength shit. Their lives may be in pieces. They may be in the midst of incalculable tragedy and turmoil, and they may be hanging on to their sanity by a thread.

I know that I am.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sun Jun 02, 2019 10:57 pm
by iambiguous
Claude Monet

You'll understand, I'm sure that I'm chasing the merest sliver of color. It's my own fault. I want to grasp the intangible. It's terrible how the light runs out. Color, any color, lasts a second, sometimes 3 or 4 minutes at most.

No as matter of fact I won't understand.

Listening only to my instincts, I discovered superb things.

Just don't expect that to always be true.

For me, the subject is of secondary importance: I want to convey what is alive between me and the subject.

Which, of course, can be almost anything.

I'm not performing miracles, I'm using up and wasting a lot of paint.

A bad day let's call it.

I am very depressed and deeply disgusted with painting. It is really a continual torture.

A really bad day let's call it.

It took me time to understand my water lilies. I had planted them for the pleasure of it; I grew them without ever thinking of painting them.

There must be the philosophical equivalent of that.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Mon Jun 03, 2019 8:58 am
by Pedro I Rengel
iambiguous wrote:Leonard Cohen

Well, you know, there's depression and depression. What I mean by depression in my own case is that depression isn't just the blues. It's not just like I have a hangover in the weekend ... the girl didn't show up or something like that. It isn't that. It's not really depression, it's a kind of mental violence which stops you from functioning properly from one moment to the next. You lose something somewhere and suddenly you're gripped by a kind of angst of the heart and of the spirit.

He means "darkness visible" of course.

It's been a long time since I've stood on a stage in London. Was about 14 or 15 years ago, I was 60 years old, just a kid with a crazy dream. Since then I've taken a lot of Prozac, Paxil, Wellbutrin, Effexor, Ritalin, Focalin. I've also studied deeply in the philosophies and the religions, but cheerfulness kept breaking through.

On the other hand, he was Leonard Cohen, right?

I see people allowing their lives to diminish, to become shallow, so they can't enjoy the deep wells of experience. Maybe it's always been this way, when the heart tends to shut down. If only the heart shut down and there were no repercussions, it would be O.K., but when the heart shuts down, the whole system goes into a kind of despair that is intolerable.

Whatever that means. But, sure, who can doubt it.

You are locked into your suffering and your pleasures are the seal.

One of his best:
It's filled with them.

It doesn't matter what you do because it's going to happen anyway.

Does it matter then what you don't do?

Everybody knows that the boat is leaking.
Everybody knows the captain lied.
Everybody got this broken feeling, like their father or their dog just died.
Everybody talking to their pockets.
Everybody wants a box of chocolates and a long-stem rose.
Everybody knows.

Not counting you of course.
And occasionally me.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Mon Jun 03, 2019 10:08 am
by Pedro I Rengel
Krafman Lugo

Postmodernists confuse indolence for extravagance.

Still, sometimes it is quite beautiful.

If introverts didn't envy extroverts so much, they would realize that the distance between them is the difference between theory and application.

But then, if they didn't, they would have to look at all that sweat straight in the face.

Corporations want to run every aspect of your life, but they don't mean anything by it.

So why are we so angry? Or, alternatively, why are we so in favor of them?

On a good morning, P Diddy will wake up feeling like me.

Surely, as our deepest thinkers of the day tell us, this is constitutively impossible.

It wasn't the joy of having Lazarus back that converted the people, or even the joy of there being life after death. It was the perplexing weirdness of it.

Jesus was a show-off.

If you are looking for the ultimate meaning of life, you are already asking the wrong questions.

This dude totally read Nietzsche.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Mon Jun 03, 2019 5:41 pm
by iambiguous
Bob Dylan

People are crazy and times are strange
I used to care but things have changed

Going on twenty years now for me.

No reason to get excited, the thief, he kindly spoke
There are many here among us who feel that life is but a joke

Going on twenty years now for me.

Music can save people, but it can't in the commercial way it's being used. It's just too much. It's pollution.

Unless your idea of being saved is tuning into American Idol.

Jesus tapped me on the shoulder and said, Bob, why are you resisting me? I said, I'm not resisting you! He said, You gonna follow me? I said, I've never thought about that before! He said, When you're not following me, you're resisting me.

Wow. Anyone know if this is a true story?

Democracy don't rule the world
You'd better get that in your head
This world is ruled by violence
But I guess that's better left unsaid

Sundown on the union.
[if not the ruling class]

Basically you have to suppress your own ambitions in order to be who you need to be.

Right, I'm sure that's what he actually did.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Mon Jun 03, 2019 8:37 pm
by iambiguous
Werner Twertzog

And then I told the obviously drunken Norman Mailer that I had six bullets in my revolver, and it was a mark of my respect for him that I would use at least three.

Probably a true story?

"Okie Dokie," as we all know, started as a watch-word among white nationalists in Tulsa, Oklahoma, in the 1920s.

Might be a true story?

Kermit, "the frog," was, as we all know, named for the suicidally depressed son of the imperialist president Theodore Roosevelt.

Probably not a true story?

It is important to take your children to Disney World to teach them that they will never be happy.

On the other hand, what if that doesn't work?

If you really want a revolution in the United States, double the price of box wine.

Let's decide if this makes sense.

I am exhausted, irretrievably, by the loathsome white-male decency of "Tom Hanks."

Let's decide if this makes sense.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Mon Jun 03, 2019 11:03 pm
by iambiguous
Leonard Cohen

My page was too white
My ink was too thin
The day wouldn't write
What the night pencilled in

Works that way here too. Only the technology has changed.

The blizzard of the world has crossed the threshold and it's overturned the order of the soul.

On the other hand, for most of us, how hard is that.

I couldn't feel so I learned to touch.

For me that comes naturally. But point taken.

I've often said if I knew where the good songs came from, I'd go there more often.

Though few have been there more often than him.

I found that things became a lot easier when I no longer expected to win. You abandon your masterpiece and sink into the real masterpiece.

So, any real masterpieces here?

Dream after dream we all lie in each other's arms.

A double entendre if there ever was one.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2019 5:38 pm
by iambiguous
Neal Stephenson

Arguing with anonymous strangers on the Internet is a sucker's game because they almost always turn out to be—or to be indistinguishable from—self-righteous sixteen-year-olds possessing infinite amounts of free time.

Fucking Kids! However old they are.

The difference between stupid and intelligent people – and this is true whether or not they are well-educated – is that intelligent people can handle subtlety.

Some [believe it or not] can even handle ambiguity.

Ninety-nine percent of everything that goes on in most Christian churches has nothing whatsoever to do with the actual religion. Intelligent people all notice this sooner or later, and they conclude that the entire one hundred percent is bullshit, which is why atheism is connected with being intelligent in people's minds.

Now it's up to 99.9%

When you are wrestling for possession of a sword, the man with the handle always wins.

Of course here some wrestle for possession of the word. The handle being its definition.

Our opponent is an alien starship packed with atomic bombs, I said. We have a protractor.

Or, for the lucky ones, a drafting compass.

Whenever serious and competent people need to get things done in the real world, all considerations of tradition and protocol fly out the window.

And then there's how things get done in la la land. And, no, not just here.

This is America. People do whatever the fuck they feel like doing, you got a problem with that? Because they have a right to. And because they have guns and no one can fucking stop them.

In some parts more than others let's say.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2019 11:05 pm
by iambiguous
Michelangelo Antonioni

If an actor tries to understand too much, he will act in an intellectual and unnatural manner.

Here? If the shoe fits, right?

A man who renounces something is also a man who believes in something.

Which tells us almost nothing at all.

It's obvious that I must explain what I want from an actor, but I don't want to discuss everything I ask him to do, because often my requests are completely instinctive and there are things I can't explain. It's like painting: You don't know why you use pink instead of blue. You simply feel that's how it should be - pink. Then the phone rings and you answer it. When you come back, you don't want pink anymore and you use blue - without knowing why. You can't help it; that's just the way it is.

No, really, that is how it is.

A woman's sex appeal is an inner matter. It stems from her mental make-up, basically. It's an attitude, not just a question of her physical features - that arrogant quality in a woman's femininity. Otherwise, all beautiful women would have sex appeal, which is not so.

Next up: A man's sex appeal.

I always mistrust everything I see, which an image shows me, because I imagine what is beyond it. And what is beyond an image cannot be known.

My guess: Going back to an understanding of existence itself. :wink:

I can't give any absolute definition of what love is, or even whether it ought to exist.

Not much that doesn't cover.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2019 1:59 am
by iambiguous

One abortion 2,000 years ago and this whole problem is solved.

Let's decide: Has God gone too far?

I created the entire universe for the sake of one subgroup of one species on one planet in one solar system in one galaxy.

Okay, that settles it!

If you think life has no meaning, wait till you try death.

Yeah, but that's only for all of eternity.

Donald Trump is an asshole's asshole. He's the kind of asshole other assholes look at and say, "Now there's an asshole."

So, don't forget to vote!

Once you realize nothing makes sense, everything makes sense.

Yeah, that is one way to look at it.

Praying for something implies that, despite My omniscience, I don't already know what you want.

That's my own point of course.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2019 4:46 pm
by iambiguous
Lisa Scottoline

Natural law says that matter cannot be created or destroyed, but that was pre-spanx.

Believe it or not, this stuff:

It's fun to do something dumb. Not something really dumb, like my second marriage. That was really really dumb.

So, what really, really dumb things have you done?

Suddenly, someone who was at the center of your life is gone, excised as quickly as an apple is cored, a sharp spike driven down the center of your world, then a cruel flick of the wrist and the almost surgical extraction of your very heart.

Suddenly. The key word of course.

Harry Truman never said ‘Give ’em hell.’ He said, ‘I just told him the truth and they thought it was hell'.

Next up: Where the buck really stops.

Great griefs are mute.

And nothing gets louder than that.

No one’s paying any attention to sociopaths, or they think we’re all killers, which is a misconception.

Anyway, the good [or at least better] sociopaths.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2019 10:10 pm
by iambiguous
Existential Comics

It's unfair to call the Marvel movies "kid's movies", they also have serious political messages, such as:
- America is good
- the military is good
- military contractors are good
- billionaires are good
- heroes protect the existing power structure, villains try to change society

Not unlike the idiotic DC Comics movies.

Yes, I am a highly rational Rationalist, and using my rational rationality I have determined, in a totally unbiased rational way, that feminism is bad. Also I don't like immigrants. Rationally speaking, of course.

He's being ironic of course. Though others clearly are not. And not just in the White House.

Her: "what is your fantasy?"
Me: "it's pretty weird…"
Her: "just tell me."
Me: "I want to act only according to that maxim whereby I can, at the same time, will that it should become a universal law."

Her: "Hey, me too!!"

Whenever I'm feeling down on myself, I remember the wisdom of Socrates: "everyone is a god damn idiot."

And, nowadays, more than ever.

...everyone always thinks philosophy is all about making arguments and trying to find the truth and shit, but that's not true it's about pissing off your dad who wanted you to major in engineering...

Trust me: He gets the last laugh.

Saying that we need to unite behind literally any Democrat no matter what their ideas are isn't how to beat Trump, it's how we got Trump in the first place.

So? That doesn't make it any less true. At least next time.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Thu Jun 06, 2019 4:37 pm
by iambiguous
Delia Owens

Please don't talk to me about isolation. No one has to tell me how it changes a person. I have lived it. I am isolation, Kya whispered with a slight edge.

He thought: Only here am I not.

Faces change with life’s toll, but eyes remain a window to what was, and she could see him there.

He wondered about his own eyes then.

Biology sees right and wrong as the same color in different light.

You know, for better or worse.

Death’s crude pluck, as always, stealing the show.

On the other hand, it all comes natural.

His dad had told him many times that the definition of a real man is one who cries without shame, reads poetry with his heart, feels opera in his soul, and does what’s necessary to defend a woman.

Well, that's one definition, sure.

Life had made her an expert at mashing feelings into a storable size.

Life does things like that. But only for some of course.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Thu Jun 06, 2019 7:19 pm
by iambiguous
Existential Comics

Rent is basically just a tax that poor people pay to rich people in order to live in society.

On the other hand [believe it or not] others don't see it that way at all.

Handy financial tips to help you save:
1. Pay off your credit cards.
2. Cook at home.
3. Use coupons.
4. Encourage the peasants to rise up against their landlords and sieze the land for the masses to abolish rent.

Which one is least likely to work?

It's hilarious how Twitter is trying to makes features to "foster debate". As if anyone on Earth wakes up in the morning and says to themselves "I'm really in the mood for some good thought provoking discussion today, so I'll log on to my favorite debate site, Twitter dot com."

My guess: He's being sarcastic.

What do women want? More or less the same thing as men: to guillotine the rich.

My guess: not all of them.

me, in the throws of a profound existential crisis: "life is meaningless! we are naught but specks of dust in a barren universe."
me, 10 minutes later after a snack: "eh…actually life is kinda alright."

Nope, tried that. Didn't work. But, every once in a while, music does.

It's important to read French novels to know that despite the inherent absurdity of it all, we can still live a life worth living.
It's important to read German novels to know that, actually, no you can't.

Anyone here doubt that?
[also, Russian novels]

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:03 pm
by iambiguous
Ted Chiang

We don’t normally think of it as such, but writing is a technology, which means that a literate person is someone whose thought processes are technologically mediated. We became cognitive cyborgs as soon as we became fluent readers, and the consequences of that were profound.

And then the "I'll be back" cyborgs among us.

If you could see your whole life laid out in front of you, would you change things?

My guess: You'd have to see it first.

We experienced events in an order, and perceived their relationship as cause and effect. They experienced all events at once, and perceived a purpose underlying them all.

They who?

Physics admits of a lovely unification, not just at the level of fundamental forces, but when considering its extent and implications. Classifications like "optics" or "thermodynamics" are just straitjackets, preventing physicists from seeing countless intersections.

Let's just say that most of us go too far in the other direction.

The individuals are tragically like marionettes, independently animate but bound by a web they choose not to see; they could resist if they wished, but so few of them do.

That's how it works alright. But how far to take it?

Science fiction and fantasy are very closely related genres, and a lot of people say that the genres are so close that there's actually no meaningful distinction to be made between the two. But I think that there does exist an useful distinction to be made between magic and science. One way to look at it is in terms of whether a given phenomenon can be mass-produced.

Think for example [lately] of dragons.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Fri Jun 07, 2019 7:17 pm
by iambiguous
Mark Manson

You and everyone you know are going to be dead soon. And in the short amount of time between here and there, you have a limited amount of fucks to give. Very few, in fact. And if you go around giving a fuck about everything and everyone without conscious thought or choice—well, then you’re going to get fucked.

On the other hand, you're going to get fucked anyway.

The desire for more positive experience is itself a negative experience. And, paradoxically, the acceptance of one’s negative experience is itself a positive experience.

Abstractly as it were.

Life is essentially an endless series of problems. The solution to one problem is merely the creation of another.

Of course some will have a problem with that.

This is the most simple and basic component of life: our struggles determine our successes.

Of course some will struggle more with that than others.

Our crisis is no longer material; it’s existential, it’s spiritual. We have so much fucking stuff and so many opportunities that we don’t even know what to give a fuck about anymore.

Not counting the tens of millions who barely subsist from day to day.

Maturity is what happens when one learns to only give a fuck about what’s truly fuckworthy.

Like, for example, understanding existence itself. :wink:

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Fri Jun 07, 2019 10:13 pm
by iambiguous
tiny nietzsche

I believe my lying eyes

Still working on ours though.

are you a cop because if you are fuck you

Unless of course you need one.
But [from time to time] point taken.

it's supposed to hurt

You know, for 70 odd years.

I've fallen and here is fine

Some other here he means.

the definition of insanity is subtweeting the same thing over and over and expecting a person not following you to notice

It's about time they changed it.

the good, the bad and the postmodern

What's the difference?

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Fri Jun 07, 2019 11:07 pm
by iambiguous
Taylor Jenkins Reid

I’m cynical and I’m bossy, and most people would consider me vaguely immoral.

Me? Less than vaguely amoral.

Flirting is probably just as much about falling in love with yourself as it is with someone else.

Not unlike almost everything else.

What's that saying? Behind every gorgeous woman, there's a man sick of screwing her? Well, it works both ways. No one mentions that part.

Come on, what man will ever believe that?

...about the cruelest thing you can do to someone you love, is to give them just enough good to make them stick through a hell of a lot of bad.

Me, I'll need to know how bad.

It is funny the crazy things our brains make up to save us from the truth.

Down right hilarious.

My fate will find me.

I'll let you know when mine finds me.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sat Jun 08, 2019 7:05 pm
by iambiguous
Janis Joplin

They asked me, How did you learn to sing the blues like that? How did you learn to sing that heavy? I just opened my mouth and that's what I sounded like. You can't make up something that you don't feel. I didn't make it up. I just opened my mouth and it existed.

On the other hand, look what's existing here.

I love being a star more than life itself.

You know, for as long as it lasted.

I talk to the audience, look into their eyes. I need them and they need me.

Sometimes even for the same things.

At my concerts most of the chicks are looking for liberation, they think I'm gonna show 'em how to do it.

Well, anything's possible of course.

I believe the only people who truly experience and test the application of equality are identical twins.

Though sometimes not even then. But who wouldn't want to have one.

I read, I painted, I didn't hate niggers.

Let's decide if she's allowed to say that.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sat Jun 08, 2019 11:05 pm
by iambiguous
Joni Mitchell

I heard someone from the music business saying they are no longer looking for talent, they want people with a certain look and a willingness to cooperate. I thought, that's interesting, because I believe a total unwillingness to cooperate is what is necessary to be an artist — not for perverse reasons, but to protect your vision. The considerations of a corporation, especially now, have nothing to do with art or music. That's why I spend my time now painting.

That explains as much as I need to know.

My heart is broken in the face of the stupidity of my species.

That'll never catch on, he thought.

Depression can be the sand that makes the pearl. Most of my best work came out of it.

That'll never catch on, he thought.

Rationally I have no hope, irrationally I believe in miracles.

Not much that someone doesn't believe in, right?

Ask anyone in America where the craziest people live and they'll tell you California. Ask anyone in California where the craziest people live and they'll say Los Angeles. Ask anyone in Los Angeles where the craziest people live and they'll tell you Hollywood. Ask anyone in Hollywood where the craziest people live and they'll say Laurel Canyon. And ask anyone in Laurel Canyon where the craziest people live and they'll say Lookout Mountain. So I bought a house on Lookout Mountain.

On the other hand, so did the U.S. Air Force.

people will tell you were they have gone
they'll tell you where to go
but until you get there for yourself
you never really know

That's probably actually true.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sun Jun 09, 2019 7:35 pm
by iambiguous
Woody Allen

Standard mathematics has recently been rendered obsolete by the discovery that for years we have been writing the numeral five backward. This has led to reevaluation of counting as a method of getting from one to ten. Students are taught advanced concepts of Boolean algebra, and formerly unsolvable equations are dealt with by threats of reprisals.

On the other hand, what if this isn't a joke?

My ex-wife was a philosophy major at NYU. Yeah, she and I used to have deep philosophical discussions where she would prove that I didn't exist.

You know, if he was God.

The wicked at heart probably know something.

Amorally no doubt.

I'm trying to arrange my life so I don't have to be present.

Or just let death do it for you.

Writing is great because in the writing you never have to... First of all you never have to leave your home. And you never have to meet the test of reality when you're writing.

So, not counting or especially here?

Life is hard for insects. And don't think mice are having any fun either.

The guy is a fucking genus!

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Sun Jun 09, 2019 11:18 pm
by iambiguous
Daniel Kahneman

The illusion that we understand the past fosters overconfidence in our ability to predict the future.

And, for all we know, it may well be literally an illusion.

The test of learning psychology is whether your understanding of situations you encounter has changed, not whether you have learned a new fact.

Trust me: This gets particularly tricky in reality.

Because we tend to be nice to other people when they please us and nasty when they do not, we are statistically punished for being nice and rewarded for being nasty.

Statisticaly though [for you and I] that can mean practically anything.

The premise of this book is that it is easier to recognize other people’s mistakes than our own.

And thus for them, ours.

...when people believe a conclusion is true, they are also very likely to believe arguments that appear to support it, even when these arguments are unsound.

Here? In spades.

The experiencing self does not have a voice. The remembering self is sometimes wrong, but it is the one that keeps score and governs what we learn from living, and it is the one that makes decisions.

Let's explain what this really means.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Mon Jun 10, 2019 5:40 pm
by iambiguous
Edouard Manet

Every new painting is like throwing myself into the water without knowing how to swim.

It's not like that for philosophers, is it?

I paint what I see and not what others like to see.

It's not like that for philosophers, is it?

Who is this Monet whose name sounds just like mine and who is taking advantage of my notoriety?

Or: Who is this Manet whose name sounds just like mine and who is taking advantage of my notoriety?
Whichever makes the most sense.

You would hardly believe how difficult it is to place a figure alone on a canvas, and to concentrate all the interest on this single and universal figure and still keep it living and real.

Actually, I have no problem believing that at all.

There is only one true thing: Instantly paint what you see.

You know, whether you truly see it or not.

Conciseness in art is essential and a refinement. The concise man makes one think; the verbose bores. Always work towards conciseness.

Here, of course, all we need do is to define it.

Re: a thread for mundane ironists

PostPosted: Mon Jun 10, 2019 10:31 pm
by iambiguous
so sad today

i never liked myself: a love story

Ask me to explain it.

one small positive thought in the morning can disappoint the shit out of you for the rest of the day

So I always wake up in the afternoon.

is anyone good running for president

She means on this planet.

curing loneliness with isolation

No, seriously.

i make the most beautiful problems for myself

You know, philosophically.

i’ll show you my emptiness if you show me yours

Sure, that's a start.