Bob Schwartz

Too Much Finding, Not Enough Searching.

Once you find, you stop searching.

I’m reminded today that once upon a not too distant time, searching was cooler than finding. It was a time when if people weren’t actually living in San Francisco or Los Angeles, they were experiencing the SF or LA of the mind. Which meant searching.

David Crosby’s underappreciated masterpiece album If I Could Only Remember My Name (1971) (with appearances by Stephen Stills, Graham Nash, Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane and Santana) is of that searching time, place and mind.

Here are the lyrics from Laughing. More searching, less finding.

Laughing

I thought I met a man
Who said he knew a man
Who knew what was going on

I was mistaken
Only another stranger
That I knew

And I thought I had found a light
To guide me through
My night and all this darkness

I was mistaken
Only reflections of a shadow
That I saw

And I thought I’d seen someone
Who seemed at last
To know the truth

I was mistaken
Only a child laughing
In the sun

Hold your head up or keep your head down?

This post has nothing to hide. Obviously, since it is here for the world to read. It has no reason to hide, being only some thoughts on whether or not we should be concerned that something we say might be seen as trouble, and get us in trouble.

America is in theory, and mostly in practice, a model of individual freedom, because it was born out of the opposite. Yet there have been times and circumstances to the contrary. The list of instances where civil liberties gave way, arguably with or without good reason, is long. War—actual or purported or made up—has been just one such situation.

Globally and historically, the price of speaking up, truth to power, is very high. Less so in America, but not unknown. So in America, which example should we heed? Should we think in troubled times that speaking up about those troubles will be protected? Or should we think, as citizens around the world have had to consider for so long, that someone is watching, listening and reading, and what we see as legitimate commentary or call to action others in authority see as threat and danger?

This is something we should talk about. Or maybe not.

Asleep

Asleep

I fell asleep standing up
Leaning against the shelf
Books as pillow and pillar.
Too tired to be uncomfortable
I felt at peace.
I should have moved
To a chair, to bed
But that was beyond me.
Besides, the books will cover me
If I get cold
Soothe and comfort me
If I dream badly
Catch me
If I fall
Asleep.