Ernie & The Nietzsche Monster

There once was a rotund chap named Ernie.

Ernie was a happy sort.  He liked to wander through his domain…

Laughing and chatting with his friends along the way..

Yep, Ernie was a happy chap.

One day though, Ernie noticed something strange..

Ernie did not know it, but he had stumbled across a monster!

Now Ernie – in addition to being a happy chap – was also a bit naive..So Ernie decided to be friends, and associate himself with the monster.Ernie took the monster under his wing (or paw), frequenting all his favourite haunts..Over time though, Ernie started to notice something peculiar..Ernie wasn’t sure.. but it seemed like his friends were disappearing!Little did Ernie know that – when he wasn’t looking – the monster had cut a swathe of destruction through his kingdom!

Ernie started to grow suspicious of the monster…With that the monster started crying, which made Ernie feel bad.And this is when Ernie made a big mistake.With that pronouncement, Ernie thought of a plan.  He would somehow help make the monster become less – well – less ‘monster-ish’.He took the monster jogging….…to the library……and even out for sushi…But monster remained a monster.Over time, Ernie’s spirit grew tired of battling the monster’s nature……became despondent…… and eventually, weak.Several years passed, and Ernie forgot who he was – and the difference between him and the monster.Ernie had thought he could change the monster, but the monster – true to its nature – had changed him.After a long time of monster-like living, Ernie had a strange dream.He dreamt he was walking through his domain…When all of a sudden he fell into an abyss!The abyss seemed to go on forever..His fall abruptly ended when Ernie emerged from a huge hole..…which turned out to be the eye of a gigantic being!

Ernie stared, transfixed, at the apparition.All at once, it spoke!And with that, Ernie woke in a fright!Ernie thought carefully.  He thought back to his kingdom…the appearance of the monster.. the disappearance of his friends… and the gradual darkening of his life…

And Ernie then realized:And with that realization, his monster-shell fell away and Ernie regained his true spirit.With his renewal, Ernie decided to deal with the monster for once and all.And the monster left.Slowly, peace and joy returned to the kingdom.Things were almost as before.But sometimes, a cloud would pass over the sun and Ernie would remember his strange dream….Years later, when Ernie would notice someone befriending a monster, he would shake his head and enigmatically pronounce:“He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.”  – Friedrich Nietzsche

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Ethical oil spills coming to a coast near you!

Today Stephen Hue’s blog from the Georgia Straight features Simon & Finn doing what they do best, ranting!

The cartoon is reproduced here, but you can check out the original cartoon at: http://www.straight.com/article-819871/vancouver/ethical-spills-coming-coast-near-you

Simon & Finn in The Georgia Straight!

This week’s Simon & Finn is brought to you courtesy of The Georgia Strait. The accompanying article focuses on a rogue geoengineering experiment on Canada’s west coast, as reported by the UK Guardian this week.

The original article and cartoon can be accessed here.

Ernie & The Forest of Envy

Once upon a time, there lived a small rotund creature named Ernie.

Ernie was a happy sort of chap.

He liked meandering through his domain, chatting with friends here and there.

One day though, Ernie happened upon a patch of forest he had never seen before.

Ernie decided to explore further, completely ignoring all childhood tales of woe associated with dark woods.

As he entered, he passed small warning signs that are sometimes referred to as foreshadowing.

Yep, he pretty much blithely sailed on through many such warning signs..

Ernie wasn’t always the most astute observer, especially when he was having a good time.

As he sauntered on, Ernie didn’t really notice that the light was getting dimmer and that he was slowly forgetting his way back home.

All of a sudden, Ernie stumbled upon something he found highly unusual – a person with a crown!

Ernie watched, fascinated!  He had never seen a crown before – and, oh – how it gleamed..Ernie found himself possessed by a strange yearning – never had he seen anything so enchanting..

As he thought back to his life, it seemed but pale and ridiculous compared to the beauty of the creature’s crown.

Ernie grew obsessed by the idea of the golden crown!  He had to have it!

What Ernie didn’t know that he had inadvertently stumbled into the Forest of Envy, which blinded the souls of all who entered, filling them with insatiable longing for the fortunes of others.

All he could think about was the crown – the precious crown.

By night he would lie awake in the forest, ruminating obsessively about the crown.

By day, he would watch the crowned one, a dark and hulking shadow.Needless to say, Ernie grew increasingly unhappy and dissatisfied.

One day though, Ernie noticed something strange.The crowned one was staring fixedly at another in the distance – one with a crown.. and a sceptre!

As Ernie watched, he could almost see a transformation take place in the crowned one…

Ernie wanted to yell – what are you so unhappy about, you at least have a crown!

All of a sudden Ernie was struck by a realization.

And with that, Ernie’s heart grew large towards the crowned one.

With those single words, the clear rays of light came shining through the Forest of Envy.

And with that, Ernie decided it was time to go home and strolled away, leaving the changed forest behind.

Years later, when asked about his time in the Forest of Envy, Ernie was fond of expounding the wisdom of Bertrand Russell, and would simply say:“To find the right road out of this despair civilized man must enlarge his heart as he has enlarged his mind. He must learn to transcend self, and in so doing to acquire the freedom of the Universe.” – Bertrand Russell

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Ernie and The Secret of Plato’s Cave

A long time ago in a galaxy sort of near, lived a small rotund creature named Ernie.

Ernie was a happy type of chap.

He would meander through his domain…

… channeling Mr. Rogers with all his friends.

One day though, Ernie came across a dark opening in his world..

Ernie drew closer…

.. and closer …

… and close-

How rude!

Anyway, Ernie finally plucked up the courage to go inside the cave…

Where he witnessed a strange sight!  He saw others of his kind, shackled, facing a blank wall of flickering light.

Ernie noticed with curiosity that they stared fixedly at the shadows cast on the wall..

… and muttered darkly amongst themselves about the images they were seeing.

As Ernie looked on, the strange ones bickered about their world..

… which led Ernie to be a little immature..

Over time though, Ernie started to find it less funny and even a little sad, for it seemed that this world of shadows was all they knew –

Ernie decided it was time for a change!

Little did he know at the time, but as it turns out Ernie had accidentally stumbled across his world’s version of Plato’s Cave.

Ernie was glad to finally leave the cave.... but couldn’t help but muse upon what he had seen.

Years later when asked about his experience with the cave-dwellers, Ernie would smile enigmatically and pronounce:

“Everyone has a cave or den of his own, which refracts and discolours the light of nature…” – Sir Francis Bacon

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