Saturday, 08 October 2005

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Sample Thoughts From A Deaf Man's Mind, 7 October 2005 Overheard while walking from my office to the 4' x 5' dorm room which—having lately vacated my parents' Houston basement—I share with four cats, one lovely wife and a library of over 9,000 books: "So she gave a press conference from her bedroom and she said all about how Henry had left her for an older woman with three adopted kids and tons of puppies who she didn't even know. Someday soon we'll all be doing that." I suspect this is one of those moments when the 75% of stuff my poor punctured eardrums don't deliver brain-wards contain some significant phonemes, ones whose absence garble words and sentences beyond cognizability. Even if I'm wrong, I doubt the day will come when we'll all have husbands named Henry leaving us for older women with many children and tons of puppies. Of all the grammatical tics in that sentence, I find "tons of puppies" the most amusing. Of course, I also find the fact that woman who gave the press conference from her bedroom wasn't acquainted with any of the puppies. There were tons of them. Surely she had happened on the street one day last December to notice one or two of the three or four thousand puppies eventually purchased by her husband's mistress in a Christmas display downtown? But maybe I have it all backwards. Maybe we live in a world where all wronged wives will now give press conferences from the bedrooms their husbands no longer occupy, as if to say "This, right here, this is what he has abandoned. This chest of drawers proudly bore his socks and underwear for more than a decade .... this nightstand, the fantasy novels whose covers he declaimed but whose contents he devoured .... this coat hanger, the tuxedo he wore on our wedding day." They would continue until thier connection timed out or the moment they could somehow tell they no longer had an audience. But later: "On this recliner he read the latest Sports Illustrated or Golf Digest. Now he'll find some new recliner, with his new wife, his new children, his new puppies. I will be here, alone, in my bedroom, broadcasting hourly news conferences, constantly updating you, my dear, dear viewers, on the state of my despair."
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If That Is Your Real Elephant; or, This Is Just a Tribute Although linked to elsewhere, I think the wife would be proud to see it here. Thus, I present to you my moment in DaDa's sun: no No NO, I was talking about Gangesa, the 14th century Sanskrit philosopher of logic, not Shree Ganesha, elephant-headed son of Shiva and Parvati. However, given Ganesha's association with intellect and wit and the erudite howlers Gangesa works into his Navya-Navya classic Tattvacintamani, I can see why you'd make that mistake. To which Luke rightly replied: I'm sorry Mr. Kaufman (if that is your real name) but this is a no-trolling zone. We're gonna have to ask you to leave. I choose the Elephant randomly. Although if you ask me, I will pretend to know who Ganesha is. Which compelled me to respond: I'm sorry Luke (if that is your real elephant), but I'm the inquisitor here, and I insist that you acknowledge the elephant on the table for what it is: namely, a troll. A porcelain troll, you know, to compliment the decor. It's there. Can't you see it? Why do you deny its existence? What is it with you people who refuse to see! It is right there! On that table! Shree-tapping-dancing-Ganesha! At this point, a complaint about the quality of conversation at The Valve arose. I defended my adopted child as best I could: As for the Valve, being that I'm a contributer there, I must say that I disagree completely with Matt's assessment of it being a "bad blog." It's no worse than Long Sunday, only ideologically different. For some reason I seem to be the only one who genuinely likes people who contribute to both...except for that [PR], about whom my feelings are well-document (in this very post, no less). I can't see why everyone can't get along, outside of the fact that everyone seems to argue in bad faith. I don't know why they do this, but they do. On the other hand (and this comment's getting damn long, as have a lot of mine lately), there's also the eternal divide between the scholar and the critic, with the Valve people falling on the scholarly side and Long Sunday on the critical...but that's not really accurate, what with Holbo being an analytic philosopher by training; and we all appreciate the same music; seem to like the same books (non-theory division); watch the same movies. We'd be drinking buddies in an off-line life...and yet look at us. But The Mad Thinker foiled my plans: Ah. Scott I see wastes no time in twisting my words. When I said "bad blog" I was speaking in the sort of stern voice one uses when addressing a dog who has just inhaled one's fillet mignon, after you have spent a lifetime researching and cooking it to perfection. In fact I have actually seen this happen once, in a kitchen of a fancy restuarant in which I labored, late at night, and let me tell you the cold hard truth of the matter is:...

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