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Podcast 2019
Middle Kingdom Podcasts (2005-2017)

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The Language Company
Timothy M. Leonard's books on Goodreads
A Century Is Nothing A Century Is Nothing
ratings: 4 (avg rating 4.50)

The Language Company The Language Company
ratings: 2 (avg rating 5.00)

Subject to Change Subject to Change
ratings: 2 (avg rating 4.50)

Ice girl in Banlung Ice girl in Banlung
ratings: 2 (avg rating 4.50)

Finch's Cage Finch's Cage
ratings: 2 (avg rating 3.50)

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white rice on red mud road

Not here very long. Long enough.

Orphan Traveler had sex with the V woman. She knows how.

Write a poem about white rice on a muddy red road.

Sparrow footprints. Discover shade.

What is it called when you give everything away to receive everything?

My joy is finished here, he said to no one in particular on a particular day pausing in mid sentence to refrain from finishing so he wouldn't have to begin again with a fresh thought in Siem Reap of all geographies with its own set of dutiful problems, 80% are under 45.

What happened to the others, the blind deaf and stupid ones? They were executed they were driven out of the capital into the countryside and forced to do labor eat dirt watch everyone die remaining silent, silent is good much ado about nothing whispered a cell phone ghost goodbye and good luck to your family.

Confirmed. Discover a place for the firs retire. First time.

Discover Beauty infield single in failed journeys.


kid joy

Ah, to be young and happy.

Where are you now? Central Asia. Where language began 9,000 years ago.

On a warm Sunday he went to the local Siem Reap java joint to draw, color and share stories with three kid friends. They played "king" wearing Merlin magician pointed hats from a birthday party.

One girl, 6, said, "did you finish your story?" She referred to seeing me last week with a red pen and pile of paper.

Subject to Change manuscript, doing a red line edit. Day by day. In the morning, in a quiet time/place before noon, no distractions, bird by bird, page by page, configuring words, structure, sense and flow. 

"Yes, I finished the will be abandoned with intuition and curiosity."

I made images of them in magic hats, drew on blank paper, drank coffee, smoked, laughed with them and wandered off. See you in the next life.

It's always pure joy w/kids. We are innocent and mad. Trust and play.

He is a calm lunatic in the "fun zone."


Ambition & Betrayal = Greek tragedy

He hears foreigners process anxieties, fears, strengths (in limited proportions) and listening skills. After dark.

Famous Cambodian cultural saying: I am sorry. Goodbye and good luck to you and your family. Genetic engineering.


I am the walrus.

I am a solitary clairvoyant.

Compassionate detachment.

Tai chi watermelon. Slow movement. Circle. Move.

Erupting like a volcano, everything I do is an experiment.

A writer has homework everyday. A writer is a word terrorist. They say what others are afraid to say.

Memory is desire satisfied.

Today your life and destiny are the same.

David Foster Wallace : Fear of fame. Fear of failure. Fear of being ordinary.

What was your original face before your parents were born?

I was born dead and slowly came to life.

I don't seek. I discover.

Mind movies.


Fear, Amazing Uncertainty & Healthy Doubt - TLC 84

 “What happens when totalitarian governments devolve so-called security programs?” Zeynep asked her mother - the mother of all answers.

“Don’t worry my sweet,” said neurotic mama-san living her worst nightmare with bliss, “media, politicians and bankers will invent new improved fake fears.

“They will create problems, spin them for ADD sheep and try to sell us solutions. Ha, ha, ha.

“The joke is on them. They play us for fools and idiots. Fools speak the truth. Anyone questioning authority is imprisoned for life, gassed, hauls Gobi shit, stoned to death, exiled or beheaded with jeweled swords. No worries my sweet. The manufacturing sector will rebound when shelves are empty. We’ll always have sugar and we can always go shopping. We shop to reduce our anxiety. We buy things to make us feel better. It's a temporary drug fix like religion or Xanax. Take two and call me in the morning.”

“How long will it take until people wake up and pay attention?” said Zeynep.

“Hard to say. Some will some won’t.”

“Self-awareness and authenticity is a funny thing. Letting go scares the shit out of people.”

“They suffer from FUD,” mother said twisting her hair until it caught fire.

“What is FUD?”

“Fear, amazing uncertainty and healthy doubt. They are internal psychological gyroscopes. A human’s first quest-ion is, is it safe? FUD is back with a hungry vengeance. They are hunger angels. Vociferous.”

“How long has FUD been going on?”

“You ask many quest-ions child,” fanning her daughter’s flame. “A long time. A Century is Nothing.”

“That’s the title of Omar's non-linear book, more like a jazz poem. Few read it. Fewer understood it. So it goes. It’s essential to cultivate humor and curiosity.” said Z. “What about adventure and surprise?”

“Adventure and surprise is a beautiful dangerous thing. You see the BIG picture. Talk is cheap. Character is motivation and action. Senses and language cannot be trusted. Let’s get to the verb from the get go.”

“I want to know the truth mother. Living safely is dangerous.”

“The truth,” she said, “is that life is an absurd comic process. If you laugh you last. Our illusionary insecurities and real authenticities evolve. Life is a celebration, a dance and process of becoming. It is a beautiful harsh short messy dream come true. It’s magic. We adapt, adjust and evolve. There’s no rhyme or reason. Life is meaningless. Existence precedes essence. We are flukes of the universe. We have a one-way ticket. It’s about feeling peace in your heart-mind with gratitude. Wonder, abundance, health and contentment. Help others realize their higher self.”

“I see the seed and smell the lily. Let’s go and play now. Take the day off and be creative.”

“Yes, let’s invent a game theory my darling daughter. It’s called mindfulness. Mindfulness gives you time. Time gives you choices. Choices, skillfully made, lead to freedom. You don’t have to be swept away by your feelings. You can respond with wisdom and kindness rather than habit and reactivity.”

“I shared your wisdom earlier in this wandering tale.”

“So you did. Telepathy. Reading about mindfulness it is one thing. Living it is something else.”

Holding hands they entered the world without being of it.


Hsipaw, Burma


Wisdom Mind of Intent - TLC 83

After 9/11 magnificent violent stories developed petri dish experiments.

Stories invented cultures, languages, art, music, and historical futures. Myths. Facts. Truths. Tales evolved new identities named Fear & Uncertainty & Surprise and What If?

“Buy low and sell high,” Omar said. Sand shifted beneath their feet. Infinite sky was blue.

He was a man of few words. “Yes, it’s not that different now.”

They contemplated vast silent emptiness.

“What is life?” said Lucky.

“The need for mystery is greater than the need for an answer. Baraka is a supernatural power. Blessing. The universe is comprehensible.”


At that instant following a 90-minute chakra body massage in Luang Prabang, a Disneyland of world heritage distinction filled with French and German and Italian babbling idiots staggering on medical canes craning arthritic necks toward cold European winter memories grasping creased maps filled with blood red dots depicting wats, guesthouses and H’mong night markets featuring oval tongued storytellers minus canes, awkward packs, widows, orphans, or landmine survivors piloting bomb boats down the Nam Ou river and recycling Grade A ordinance as decorative garden planters and spoons, a foreigner piled gold on a table in Laos. He turned to a one-eyed father. “I will give you this gold for your daughter.”

“I want more,” said patriarch. “Her face and body and heart are Lao. She has Vietnamese blood. It’s supply and demand. Business is business. Politics is business and business is politics. It’s all about perceived value. No plastic. Cash only. See this machete?” waving it in the man’s face, cutting him off.

Nearby, two American males eating Indian curry and garlic pita bread hadn’t decompressed. Trying to communicate in complete sentences was impossible. One released sounds, nouns, impressive words, past and present participles, guttural phrases, heavy deep real sentences and like a game of chess war or blind love showing zero respect the OTHER cut him off at the throat with a sharp sophisticated annunciated verbal machete.

Frustrated and grimacing, he suffered irreparable brain damage. Short circuit. Transmission lines collapsed.

Crash. Burn.

 The two Yankees were fresh off the banana boat. They’d sailed out of NY past the oxidized tall green torch lady, across the Atlantic, through the Mediterranean, slid through the Suez Canal, and picked up a cargo of palm oil in Goa before translating the lack of wind into thermal icecaps near Ceylon surveying tea plantations where they harvested pure logic in a scientifically coherent genesis.

The ship’s captain texted his mistress in Kuala Lumpur, “I’ll be late for dinner.”

She was engaged to a dour celibate hypocritical burning monk disguised as a novice meditating in an isolated cave on the Tibet-Bhutan border at 21,451 feet. She missed his calm sense of intention and clear motivation. She prayed he’d complete his destiny to be One With Everything. Fearless he’d leave the cave and travel south inside fatigued winds to meet her at an undisclosed location. This was her secret desire, wish, dream and consistent memory. 

She imagined him bargaining his flesh-covered skeleton in a brief life condition. Trading raw silk he negotiated passage with Silk Road nomads by communicating with Sumerian script etched on clay tablets. Brushing shard dust off shard dust revealed time-lines, sharp indentations, incomplete circles, zigzag lightning bolts and fingerprints of whirling dervish dancers. 

 Whorls reflected afternoon light into somnambulistic retinas.

A middle-aged Laotian dwarf in a well-cut gray suit coat, black baggy cotton pants and army issued green tennis shoes walked past. Pink sky streaked sunset. He’d been walking all day. His stride was steady. Other than a bowl of noodles near the Mekong he’d been raising dust. Headed home he passed golden Wats, orange robed monks sweeping leaves, women simmering pots of food on clay burners fired by kindling, laughing children, blaring TVs, noisy engine repair shops, a sleeping tuk-tuk driver and floating bamboo pavilions where courtesans composed haiku. 

He passed a teashop sign:

Smile. We Will Help You Practice.

He walked across a narrow iron bridge above a raging river and down a muddy road to his bamboo home complete with a single watt bulb surrounded by dancing omnivorous insects.

 His shoes went near the door. Slapping his jacket against a wall released day’s dust. He hung it up. Splashing water on his face he smiled at his incomplete reflection. He poured a cup of green tea, ate a handful of sticky rice and prepared his table. 

He spread out a large sheet of rough handmade silk paper, camelhair brushes and black ink.

Memory spoke: After they cut my tongue out during my re-education through shit labor experience I started writing script. I found a compressed black Chinese ink stick with yellow dragons breathing fire.

I added a little water to a recessed gray stone surface. I placed the ink in the center. Then, using my right hand, as Master Liu in Chengdu taught me, I rotated the stick in a clockwise motion. Black ink ebbed into liquid as a drop of water rippled a pond.

After collecting ink I selected my white wolf hairbrush. After soaking it in water for three minutes to relax it’s inner tension I spread out thin rice paper. I placed my right foot at an angle, left foot straight, with my left palm flat on the table and fingers spread.

I dipped the brush in the recessed part of the stone to absorb ink and slowly dragged it along an edge removing excess. I savored the weight and heft. My brush has it own personality and character. There are 7,000 characters in my written language.

My Chinese script is about unity of mind and spirit.

I have much to see and a long way to travel with this unknowing truth.

My teacher recited a poem.

A mountain loses its spirit without cloud,

loses its peculiarity without stones,

loses its elegance without trees,

and loses its life without water,

and in painting,

one should concentrate the mind,

and hold the breath,

with concentration of the mind,

serenity is maintained,

with the breath held up,

preciseness is attained.

One should be as serene as an old monk in meditation and be as precise as a silk worm in spitting silk.

The spirit and real fun of painting are from nature and beyond brushes and paints.


I stood up straight inhaled three deep breaths and exhaled into emptiness. I centered my unconscious on blank paper filled with nothing. Respect white emptiness.

My wisdom mind of intent became water. It was quiet, calm and still with concentration and focus. I listened to brush, ink and paper. I am a conduit. Be the brush, be the ink, be the water, be the paper.

Each essence is pure, free, clear and luminous.

My useless tongue flapped like a prayer flag in Himalayan winds. Stories and songs are nightingales. I heard children laughing and singing. They greeted each other in the babble of play with laughing word pearls. They dream with their eyes open.

         When we are asleep we are awake.

         Life gave me art and I used art to celebrate life.

“No language, no culture,” Omar sang on a dune. Shooting stars played celestial tag.

Omar translated global media manifestations selling fear, double-edged messages, disinformation, misinformation, bias, lies, half-truths, myths, whispers, paranoia, propaganda, and irrational transmissions issued by philistine government authorities in every language on a spinning space rock.

Human brains overflowed with data. The remote control device was broken with too many channels. Idiots loved distractions.

Omar and Lucky did not take possession of that event. They meditated as mindfulness was gifted to tribes. They inhaled global suffering and exhaled healing evolving wisdom, clarity and compassionate awareness. They practiced harmony and gratitude.

Scholars educated at elitist universities and institutes of erudite psychoanalytic study related Latin stories about the rise and fall of 4,000-year old civilizations.

Survivors created 26,000-year old Paleolithic cave painting stories of the real world. Omar doodled archers, hunters, dancers, and bison, fish, awkward time slashes on stone.

Caves overflowed with survivors.

“A tisket a tasket we need a casket,” sang multi-lingual children.

Omar envisaged historians, politicians, talking heads, taxi drivers, fortune-tellers, beauticians and morticians taking hotline calls. The number of callers increased exponentially. Suicide search and rescue teams were alerted. Citizens packed hospital emergency rooms screaming, more drugs. Medical schools increased enrollment to meet manufactured needs.

Selling fear and consumption, Demand overwhelmed Supply.

The Language Company