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- Questions for Ignorance readers, contributors, & audience on
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- Ignorance at the Roxy on
- It lives! on
- Hideous Purple Tentacle Beast on
- Hideous Purple Tentacle Beast on
- Hideous Purple Tentacle Beast on
- Hideous Purple Tentacle Beast on
Okay, so I haven’t totally grappled with Urvater’s last post, you know, just woke up with this notion, and thought I’d pass it on.
Let’s say: Twig Creature is an artist. Invents painting on the wall, telling stories, shadows on the cave wall, or something. In so doing, e creates the possibility of something other than reality. Ideals; utopias; beauty; the future; and in so doing, invents falling short of ideals, distopias, ugliness, the unhappy present. The invention of comparison — between our actual lives and one that exists in the form of smeared bug guts mixed with flower petals ground up to make a colour on a rock that looks like a really successful hunt. The marvellous beasts we could have found and killed if we’d been more lucky or clever; the hunt we might have in the future; how life would be if we weren’t so hungry. The imagination. The chain of desire and suffering. The old ones, the ones that lived before the invention of art, are like monks. The new ones are entangled in a net of hope and disillusionment, because they, you see, made the mistake of allowing art to corrupt them, just like the audience has, by coming to the theatre. So maybe: the invention of art. The invention of illusion. That kind of thing.
Maybe there’s something in that.
The cave people are extremely educated, thoughtful, conversational. From the way they think and speak, they all seem to have doctorates in various subjects. As mentioned before, they tend to hold coffee cups, and sip coffee as they discuss major issues: who are we? What are we for? Where did we come from? What effect might we be having on evolution, technology, etc.? They try to imagine incredible improvements that might evolve over thousands, even millions of years. How better life might be, far into the future. Or, how golden it was in the past, before they developed all their human greeds and frailties and meannesses. They of course look more or less like gorillas, and, as they talk, they are, of course, sitting on the floor, in filth, gnawing on dead animals. Skins hanging around. Maybe occasionally one of them drags in a dead enemy for dinner. The conversationalists, as you can tell primarily by their voices, might be all males. One of them maybe gets a bit overheated in one of their intellectual/historical/ anthropoligical/religious arguments and runs a spear through his colleague. Women hover in and out, maybe, with kids, offering roots or something (which are refused), or insects (which are accepted, potato chip style). Women might remove a carcass that doesn’t have any more meat on it, asking if anybody wants this eyeball before she takes it away. One takes it. Occasionally, one of the participants in the discussion grabs a woman or another guy and rapes en. The resultant body language — all body language, except sipping the coffee, and gesticulating as they talk, is totally primitive. The only thing “modern” about them is their speech and hand and shoulder language relative to their speech. Everytime they do anything else, it’s animal, totally cave. Maybe one of them does some art on the wall, and is severely criticized, ostracized. They complain that art these days has gone to shit. “My kid could do that!” Maybe some more joke stuff, like, one rolls in a stone wheel he’s made, and they all ridicule it and him. Maybe, too, they talk about hunting and war, and decide to do some. Tomorrow morning. Early start. Who’s in? The women protest. The men ridicule the women. Shit, if women had their way, there wouldn’t be any wars or hunting at all! And THEN where would we be? Maybe somebody lying in the background is sick. On into the conversation, they realize that the sick person has died. They discuss whether they should just throw en out for the animals, or use en as animal bait, or, what if, I don’t know, you know, you hate to just, like throw en out. What about some kind of little ceremony or something, just to express sympathies for the way e was. I mean, e was a human being, like us, eh? They then get into a full discussion of death, ceremony, ritual, etc. On into the play a bit, the men all feel like killing something or someone. It’s nearly dawn anyway. So, they get their weapons and go out. The women shake their heads in resignation. The men gone, the women discuss kids, social activities, personalities: whether one of their kids might be autistic. Another one might have A.D.D. One wonders whether her kid is anaemic. Another makes a case that her kid is amazingly superior. Gentle, loving, intelligent. Solves group problems in very creative ways. The women approve of this, as they chop up dead animals with rocks, etc. They might also discuss their men; expressing very little hope that they will ever rise to anything other than hunter/killers. But, the woman love them anyway. What can you do? Stuff like that.
Okay, so I think I asked the wrong question. I had asked: what does Twig Creature want? I even thought I had an answer: I was convinced that Twig Creature would want to procreate. That would create this great circle, from the birth of Twig Creature to the next generation; it would show hope, and connect us to the Creature by way of making us ponder the succession of generations onwards through prehistory to history to modernity to we, the audience, sitting there in the theatre. I imagined, as was suggested by Terminator E and Libidoless I think, a succession of tragi-hilarious obstacles thrown in our hero’s way, and finally, victory, somehow or other, I guess through finding a mate and having a new kid.
However, what we really want to figure out is: what is Twig Creature’s dilemma? That’s how we make it all engaging. We’re not just watching a little cave-person enduring various trials, we are, as Neandertaler suggests, seeking to hold opposites in tension, or as Urvater suggests, trying to pose dilemmas, which we, the audience, also feel intensely.
I think the objective of art is not to teach — by which I mean, to have a philosophical objective, to make a case for a perspective. If we go in with an answer, we’re propagandists. We want to go in with a question. And leave it unanswered.
The ideal artistic dilemma has two or more solutions, both of which entail sacrifice and success. Like in life — there’s never one direction that doesn’t destroy other possibilities. Or, at best, like Urvater’s Kohlberg’s dilemmas, which are only answerable insofar as one applies different frames of reference — clan loyalty, constitutional ideals, and so on. But from a different frame, a completely different solution would be the right one. (I think the different frames are held in constant tension in life, and that in actual truth none actually supersedes the other — they are simply in conflict. See A Theory of Evolution for more babbling about this.)
My point: something about cave-people presents some kind of question. What’s the question? How can that question be dramatized? Maybe Twig Creature is presented with a technological innovation that will make the tribe more comfortable (less ignorant) but that also entails a great loss of vitality, or something? (That’s a terrible idea, I think, but I threw it in there because at least it seems to echo some of the thoughts people have been having about what we’ve lost, how we’ve lost it, since prehistory.)
Is there something to what I’m saying? Or do I need to finish my coffee before I start posting?
There was some debate about this:
We’ve got this opening scene for the play, where the little creature is born from the big crazy creation ritual, which gives us a main character to whom things could happen. We tended to think that a narrator coming in just at the most crazy moment of screaming and pounding on a drum and waving arms around and so on, the narrator coming in at that moment would really give us one of those rite-of-passage laughs that we might want. At that moment, the cave-people would shed their barbaric skins and bones and things and reveal themselves to be gentle puppeteers dressed in tighty-whiteys, endearingly vulnerable, at which point the narrator could continue along blithely about the nature of modern humans, which they could represent through interpretive dance and things. That was one direction.
Then there’s the direction where we just keep plugging with the little fellow made of twigs and bones, and see en encounter the world and fight to survive and try to make babies and then die or something.
But then we realized this: whether we take the opportunity to alienate the audience for comedic or intellectual effect after the twig-person is born or not, we’d still want to pursue the creature’s story to its end — either by going straight from there or by coming back to it every now and then after our narrator has taken us on some different and contrasting journey (aesthetic, mood) for a bit.
So that leaves us with the task of building a journey for our twig-creature. I believe my own father explained the fundamental story structure thusly: a hero wants something more than anything else in the world. The hero tries to get that thing, and fails; e tries again and fails; and then e tries one more time and either succeeds, or fails, depending on how you want the audience to feel (hopeful/hopeless).
So: if you were a twig-creature — what would you want more than anything in the world?
(Part of the cathartic effect of theatre is, I think, being in the company of someone who knows what e wants more than anything in the world for a couple hours.)
Love? Freedom? Children? Immortality? Dominance? The tribe? Solitude?
Notice I’m trying out urvater’s gender neutral pronoun. I’m probably getting it wrong, but I’m trying.
We discussed an idea for the set. Our idea: a set of animal skins, hanging from the lighting grid, in a semi-circle around the back of the stage. On the animal skins (probably not real, no, don’t worry, we’d make them out of fun-fur and leather (which doesn’t harm an animal when you take it off of it, not like fur for a fur coat), or something that looks like hide, with a kind of translucence if we could get it) we would use the absurd power of modern computers to project various images – for example, wind-swept Ice Age vistas, flickering fire-light, animations of cave-paintings and shadows, our pet turtle shot in close-up so it looks like a monstrous dinosaur-turtle threatening tiny puppets on stage, and other things we haven’t thought of yet.
And then, on the floor, there would be what looks like a huge pile of bones. Like the refuse that would collect after living in a cave for several years, eating things. We talked about how much we would like to carve each one of the bones out of wood, because it would be beautiful to do that and also we like animals but hate trees. Maybe that’s crazy though. If any of you, in particular, would like to donate any extra antlers you’ve got kicking around your cave, they’d be real handy for making our pile look really vivid. Because antlers are really hard to make out of wood – we’ve tried. We’d strew the bones around the stage in an artful way.
The point is: all the puppets would be in that pile. Sometimes they’d be prehistoric puppets made out of crude sticks and skulls and such, and sometimes they’d be puppet-puppets of modern things (for instance, for the sci-fi scene we’ve been batting around on the site) that you wouldn’t even realize were there in the heap until they got pulled out for a scene. Or maybe you would, at a certain point, realize that there weren’t just bones in the heap, there’s old tv-sets and stuff, and you would realize this is a cave of some people that survived the apocalypse or something.
In the heap we’d have some of those amazingly realistic-looking fire effects made out of lights, silk, fans and smoke-machines, so that the bone-heap would also serve as our fire-pit. We had some good fun out at the cabin doing shadows on the snow with our hands, you know, butterflies and rabbits and that kind of thing, until we realized what great stuff you can do with three people working together to make a great big dinosaur shadow and things like that. There’d be a good light for doing that kind of thing on the animal skins hanging behind, which we could deviously enhance with projected animations so that we really blew everybody away.
And that would be it. Stark! Simple! Beautiful! Easily packed into a truck, in comparison to our other shows! Comments, welcome.
We also thought it would be great to make the whole stage into a great big sandbox, although we didn’t have any real thematic reason for it, we just thought it was a great idea for a stage design. Except then we thought about lugging around all those sandbags and what a pain it would be to clean up. Still, you hear about theatre companies who have, like, a pool on stage, and how everybody wants to see the goddamned show in the pool because that’s really cool and we wanted to have everybody say they wanted to see the show in the sandbox. Anyway, we’re not so convinced about the sandbox idea now that we’ve sobered up.
So we got to talking at one point about how there are really two distinct schools of thought on the subject of primitive origins – let’s call school number one the ‘we’re savage beasts under a thin veneer of civilization which barely keeps us from calling each other names and murdering each other’ school, with adherents like William Golding, Joseph Conrad, et cetera, or the ‘once we were innocent and happy and one-with-the-world and we have been corrupted so that now we call each other names and murder each other’ school, with adherents like, well, the Bible, and Rousseau, and Terence Malick or whatever his name is, and so on. These two schools are the start of of the conversation, anyway. People will also say things like ‘civilization is a terrible system for keeping us from murdering each other for each other’s sandwiches, but it’s the only system we’ve got’ (Freud, as I read him) or ‘the process of civilizing our animal natures just isn’t done, and there’s a whole new dimension of consciousness around the corner’ (Rama the Ancient Egyptian Pharoah-Wizard reincarnated as Linda Kowalchuk (buy his book!)) or ‘we were just as confused and frightened then as we are now’ (my own view). However: these two schools of thought are emotionally very vivid when they are represented in art, as in, say, The Lord of the Flies or, well, Avatar. And many posts on this page take positions on the issue as well – I think of, for instance, Urvater’s description of the edenic happiness he had during jungle training, versus his own desire to have shocking & visceral & bloody things happening onstage. Do we want cave-people killing and eating each other, so that when we come out of the theatre we feel like we’re murderous things at bottom, and when push comes to shove we’ll be in the cannibalistic motorcycle gang when the apocalypse comes? Or maybe we want to show cave-people loving each other and cooperating and stuff, so that when we come out we feel a warm conviviality, a sense that all of us in the theatre would join together in the event of nuclear winter and form a utopic commune that preserved the values of good will and democracy for future generations who will re-emerge when the radiation dies down?
After our trial-by-ice, I personally felt very warmly towards my comrades, and did indeed feel like a tribe would have been a very happy place to be, despite paleolithic physical hardships. We didn’t fight over the last piece of chicken. Maybe that was because we were all really full of chicken already, and there was still the havarti to have for a snack later on. Maybe if there wasn’t enough chicken we would have resorted to cannibalism. And maybe my warm sense of conviviality would have made me slow to realize the others were secretly sharpening their teeth in the corner. But! I do, as I get older, like the idea of trying to make people feel good more than to make them feel bad/confused/epaté-ed. And I think people in the audience like to feel good more than they like to feel bad. I like what our friend David Rhymer told us once (I think it was something Ray Bradbury said to him): ‘it’s not a story unless the good guys win.’
Okay, so we Trouts had a few days to bash around some ideas together. We attempted a bit of a method-puppet-show writing, heading into the dread wilderness to experience the terrors and joys of prehistoric life first-hand — by sequestering ourselves in a log cabin (okay, not quite a cave) in the mountains (okay, at Camp Chief Hector, who kindly lent us the use of the cabin, so there were hundreds of children enduring the same horrors as us not more than a half-hour trudge away) for a death-defying two nights. It may not have been 100% authentic, but it was cold, and we did eat a bucket of KFC for dinner the first night without plates! Right out of the bucket, just like the cave-people! And, truth be told, it was a little too cold, and the fireplace wasn’t heating up the whole cabin, so we (without even realizing how prehistoric we were being) built a kind of fort/yurt thing out of camp mattresses and upturned tables and chairs and things just to survive. Over the next couple days we did several experiments to see what prehistoric life would have been really like, for example, we tried to throw a long pointy stick at things (harder than they make it look in Quest for Fire), we tried to trudge through the snow (good thing we thought to bring extra cave-socks), we tried to make it for 24 hours without having to get online (did they have wi-fi in the Paleolithic? Did they have wi-fi three years ago? I can’t remember anything more than 30 seconds ago anymore), we tried to get our truck unstuck from a snow-drift (just like they would have had to do, only with a mastodon).
(Okay, between us, the people of the Ignorance Open Creation Process, we’re going to make a really big deal about the trip when we talk to the press when the show’s actually going up. Some details may change to make us look a titch more impressive.)
At any rate: we did manage to find some time in between harrowing-encounters-with-primal-truths to ponder some ideas for the play, which we will attempt to communicate in forthcoming posts.
Here’s a good theme: it’s back to Judd Trout’s earlest note, about earlier human happiness. This seems dry. But it has blood and flesh and spirit in it. And universal importance. I think this has been mentioned or at least touched upon in these texts. Here it is: the human animal evolved in stresses that exercised es capacities and heights and profundities. Challenged en — to the hilt. These challenges surely often involved that profoundly wonderful thing: to hold one’s life in one’s hands, right this minute. This is more suited perhaps to younger humans. But I don’t think we ever lose it, getting older. We want that incredible, chemical, heady, heart-racing risk and fear and surmounting. We crave it. We NEED it. I think women have their versions of this, and big-time. For guys, it’s outside them. For women, it’s bringing in life, pure and simple, and keeping it alive. Life and death is ALWAYS in the hands of women — even when their kids are adults. Still, today, come to think of it. Today, men seek that gutthrill in driving fast, climbing mountains, adventures, and war. For sure, war. Young guys don’t NEED any political rationale for going to war. We worry about their morale. Sure, some go nuts. But many are over there for the obvious reason: that’s where there’s an enemy. I know. I’ve done it. So, this theme. It’s what do humans do with this fight-kill-survive spirit? We’re not getting it in the fucking office. We’re not getting in in the rules of parliamentary procedure. We’re not getting it in front of the the TV. It’s gone. It’s in the past. So, the question: how do we either live without it, or create it? Where, how, can we find it? How can a human being be enself in today’s world? The state to which we have brought ourselves? How can we live as half-creatures? Do we have to? Thoreau: “All (most? many? I forget) men live lives of quiet desperation”. Is this the way we have to live? Shells of ourselves? I think that this is a really vital question, and I look to playwrights to answer that. Gentlepersons! To your pens! God (Art) help us! Tolstoy dabbled around. THIS, though, IGNORANCE, is going where angels fear to tread. Let’s go!
A procession of cave-people enter. We do the cave-people in a kind of Noh-style, with masks that project off of the performer’s face. The actual performers are draped in furs and such. If we were brave they’d be naked other than the masks and draping furs. They are carrying strange ritual things, bones and bits of fur and branches and skulls and horns and feathers and such. One beats an enormous drum, which makes a great big boom, supplemented by massive sub-woofers under the seats of the audience, so their buttocks actually tremble with each beat; the cave-people are chanting and moaning. They move with ritual slowness and weirdness.
The lights are dim, with occasional slices like moonlight coming in through cracks in a cave-wall. Somehow or other we have to get around the fire regulations so we can have a fire, too. The smell and the flicker of it would be crucial, I think.
They are engaged in a ritual pertaining to their creation myth. This is clever, you see, because they are engaged in a ritual of their creation myth, and so are we, by coming to a show about our prehistoric origins. The differences between the two rituals could be interesting to contemplate.
The ritual describes two beasts coming together to make a child. One is a stag, maybe, and the other is a wolf, or I don’t know. (* actually it might have taken us thousands of years to connect sex to pregnancy — we thought women just naturally and constantly produced children, and men had nothing to do with it. So maybe it’s not two beasts coming together, maybe it’s just one animal, but I think it’s nice that it’s an animal, because our own creation myth is also about coming from animal origins.)
They enact the ritual using crude and crazy puppets made out of antlers and bones and all that weird ritual stuff they carried in. They enact the birth of the first human from the animal, using theatrical devices available to them — for instance, they might have some beast’s bladder full of water that they pour onto the stage for the water breaking. They shriek together to make the labour pains, and get the audience to shriek back somehow or other. They bang on the drum and dance around. And then a little puppet of a human being (made out of twigs and bones et cetera) emerges.
Then, you see, we have our hero. The puppet that was born. The entire play (or some of the play) could be the adventures of this little person. Puppeteered by cave-people who are enacting a ritual, and reacting to events with great emotion, so that when the little person is attacked by some gigantic creature (played by one of the cave-people wearing a bear-skin or something) the other cave-people lament and tremble and even attack the gigantic creature themselves in defense of the little person — because they themselves are unable to clearly delineate the difference between theatre and reality — what’s happening to the little twig and bone person affects them as if it’s really happening to somebody real.
It would be fun to see what kind of theatrical effects (wondrously overt) could be generated using only things that we could actually find in the forest. Certainly sound effects — although as I mention it would be nice to supplement sound effects (banging sticks together, grunts, stomping feet and such) with amplification, so that the audience is really viscerally enveloped. Hand-like branches and a skull or a rock could make a whole creature, operated by all three performers, for example.
(By the way, we’re hoping to pull off this show with three performers. Economic realities.)
Puppets and masks would be interchangeable. We wouldn’t be strict about such things at all. Real human body parts could be used as part of a puppet, or elaborate head-dresses, and certainly shadow puppets on the cave-wall.
And so: the little person would enact some grand journey of discovery, illustrating how humans learned to negotiate the world from the perspective of people thousands of years ago. Discovering fire or God or war or what-have-you.
And every once in awhile a documentary narrator would say something.
Okay, so here’s where I think we’ve gotten, for anybody who might be joining us at this point:
There’s a heap of interesting source material that’s been gathered, and probably more to come. It’s certainly worthwhile to throw in seemingly unrelated bits of inspiration, because whatever gets sent in could set off a little flurry of ideas nobody had thought of yet.
But it does seem like there’s a central discussion going, which I’m going to oversimplify by calling it Words versus No Words.
The No Words camp sees the opportunity for creating an experience for the audience that would be much like being transported into the middle of a prehistoric tribe, who grunt and whoop and screech incomprehensibly, whereby the audience would find a strange commonality between them and the prehistoric people, an unlikely understanding, a growing doubt that their own civilization has brought them as much sophistication as they think. The cave-people on stage would do visceral things and have visceral experiences — love, fight, hump, die, grieve. The audience, if it was done well, would emerge from the theatre feeling like they’ve just had the most profound primal screaming support group they ever attended.
The Words camp sees the opportunity to comment on all this primal activity, by showing the civilized in juxtaposition — for example, by pitching the whole thing as a documentary, and having the documentary narrator intoning hilariously/profoundly/confusedly as the cave-people writhe and shriek and discover religion or what-have-you, or by having characters such as archaeologists incorporated into the action — a mediating element of some kind, let’s say.
The first camp is asking for a plot to be developed. The second camp may be less plot dependent, because a format like that can be wide-ranging like a documentary — even encompassing different puppetry techniques between scenes. The difference might be, for those of you who have seen Old Trout shows perhaps, the difference between Beowulf and Famous Puppet Death Scenes.
Me: I’d love it if we could actually figure out how to get the audience to do some primal screaming. I’m not totally sure what Primal Scream therapy is, and I’m not sure it would be healthy, but it would be beautiful to see a theatre full of people facing down the people on stage with war-bellows at the top of everybody’s lungs, pounding on their chests and shaking their genitals threateningly.
And I think a narrator’s voice might really be helpful for breaking the tension at that point.
Okay, so, as the ideas for the play develop, so too does the experiment in collaborative writing over the internet. Anybody that’s got any thoughts on that, as well, fire ‘em in, because I think it’s working pretty well but the ultimate plan would be to perfect the method itself over the course of several shows. If it works.
So, one methodological observation I might throw in: it seems to me that if I arrived to this webpage at this stage, I might feel overwhelmed by the material and the excellent conversations going on, and maybe even feel nervous about contributing. So, by way of solution, I’m going to attempt to post periodic summaries of where we’re at, so that somebody new might see an opportunity.
Pardon this, please. Not my role. But maybe we should refer specifically within our contributions to what entry/subject/point we are referring to. Otherwise, I, at least, am getting lost. Textual context is getting disjunctive, and you can’t tell what somebody’s writing about. There is magnificent stuff going into this site. Many entries, I feel, warrant real thought and development. I know this will happen. The Old Trouts don’t let much get by them! I’m confident that the Bible, War and Peace, and other previously significant writings will be by-passed by Ignorance. (Well, put that way, I’m sure this has already happened.)
Can two seperate simultaneous plays occur at the same time, a la point counterpoint. We sorta know what and where and how we sorta became, so that play can be construed pretty easily,, the mirror play the “What if” play could happen beside the one making that ignorant choice, the “We did” play.
I blame thumbs, standing (not enough ground fruits and nuts or flightless poultry or short-squat-slow animals or butterflies for the kids to net) and HORMONES, bloody stupid hormones,,, the bane of good choice.
An old caveman of 30 had the IQ of a 12 yearold for a good chunk of our existence, think what his & her kids witnessed or learned from. Actually go watch 11 & 12 year old kids play, guaranteed there will be a fire and a couple of those kids would have cooked a few frogs or snared and skinned a gopher or two (kids do snare gophers still, I hope, or is it XBox all the way?).
Someone mentioned cavemen sitting on each others backs covered in mammoth dung, appearing like the hunted. Montgomery used gigantic cardboard cutouts of tanks up on the horizon that Rommel pummeled with artillery and then sadly realised that he’d wasted countless shells on this theatre facade. Apparently Rommel was a real sucker for the pea and shell game and squandered much of his fortune in the alleys of Cairo trying to find the legume.
If we never stood up and lost our thumbs along the way what would my espresso machine look like? would there still be a gynecology row at my favorite strip club? would the best foreign film category still be a token nod at the Oscars.
Right Wing & Left Wing, is usually associated with Republican & Democrat (I can`t use Canadian politics as an example being that there is about as much diversity on Parlaiment Hill or the Legislature in thought as there is a maripan cookie cut in half). “Right“ is derived from Roi (King aka ascension), Left is derived from Libre balance, a watchdog of ascension, keeping it all in check. Our lefties failed us back there somewhere, prolly tending there hemp and poppies.
What would caveman puppets look like, or rather, if cavemen (Urgh, and camedames) made puppets for shows on those evenings where the kids are hopped up on too much honey, what would they look like,,, we know what adorned the walls, not much has changed there,,, i`m sure there was more to their lives than eating, shitting and making hump.
So many ideas, yet so tricky to go in reverse, down that reductionist path.
We need a plot.
I’m finding it a bit difficult to navigate the site, like, to see where to answer something, or find something. The framework is over-running content or something. Comments are beautfully and powerfully overflowing the banks of posts. But I’m sure it’ll work out. There is allusionary significance here. The world has gone menu, so everybody is just picking out stuff. Whereas, earlier people didn’t have any menu. They had to create the menu every minute before they could pick out stuff and try it. (Think of the invisible control exercised by those who write the menus that are blindly followed. They have almost as much power as media that “tell both sides” — as though anything only had two sides.) So, folks, here, we are writing menu, eh? We have the power! But I just wanted to say: there is some wonderful stuff surfacing here. It warrants reading, and re-reading, and thinking about. Among much much good stuff, for instance, the idea of the foetus expressing reactions to its mother’s actions or feelings. That is a wonderful image of evolution, isn’t it? How can we exist without a context, a sounding board, that is already implanted in us? And the poetry written about Bread and Puppets puppets. Yes! WAY bigger than TV! (And, of course, everything Urvater writes is just amazing.) (Just joking. I take that back.) God, some of the people on this site could like, be writers! Take it, Dook!
There is evidence to support the theory that humans and neanderthals are distinctly separate species. That we are not evolved from these cave people. This was a peaceful species that were loving and cared for each other. Not that different from humans, they bred and intermingled with humans. Modern descendants of this mating are those with the almost extinct red haired gene. There are recent studies that show that people with this gene have a higher pain threshold.