Trolling For Tinfoil
Thursday, October 06, 2005
Much ado about nothing
Much fanfare, little substance.

I have almost nothing of importance to ponder, nothing of note, no drama, no sophmoric pranks to recall with childish glee..

I got nuthin'.

I did direct choir for my Mother this evening- She is a pianist, and is playing classical music for a gaggle of doctors at Hershey Medical Center. They can be a tough crowd, nor I do not envy her for having to play music that is revered, worshipped and analyzed by a crowd that fancies themselves demi-gods, qualified to judge and critique most anything.
In short- M.D's are a pain in the ass when they're slightly tipsy and off the clock.

My day, you ask?
Everything I touched turned into a major project.
Nosirree, no quick fixes were on my plate today. I scurried down the hall, a serious frown on my face, badges flapping wildly in time with my purposeful stride and stepped into a cubicle housing one ego entirely to small for the work space he so obviously deplored. His greeting was one of irritation, waving his hand imperiously at the error message on his screen.
The "Disk Full"message displayed prominently on his oversized LCD monitor mocked him, an electronic roadblock in his quest for academic accolades.

He was pacing back and forth, a caged animal being kept from his prey. There was really only one thing I could do, given his penchant for browbeating the lowly geeks..

I opened the explorer window, checked the "display hidden files and folders" box and said in my best basso profundo..

"Holy Crap, THAT's a lot of Porn!"

I expect I won't get nearly so much attitude from our resident prima donna next time, especially since the sound of muffled guffaws coming from the surrounding cubicles added a nice counterpoint to my look of disgust.

Moral of the story? Don't give me shit when I've got my hands full undoing your mess, folks.

(I bet you are wishing for drama, now aren't you?)

[Here's the question that I threatened to ask in the comment to your previous post. Light a cigarette, this is gonna be long.]

Humans do a lot of strange things. One of the strangest among these, is this: From time to time in our lives, we walk up to a particular person, and for no apparently good reason, inform them that we love them.

I'm sure that most people take this practice as quite normal; but there is a certain thing about this whole deal that I find totally bewildering.

What puzzles me is not so much that we choose a particular person to be weak for -- there may be a host of physiological and psychological reasons for that; what puzzles me is the difficulty we face in finding an acceptable substitute for our Chosen (TM), should the need ever arise. And sometimes the difficulty is a lifelong one.

There are many ways to look at this, but from a purely demographic angle, it makes no sense to me. There are damn near six billion people on earth. From this seething mass of humanity, why do we tag a particular, exclusive person to be in love with? Why, pretty please, do we miss the sound of a particular voice? Why do we miss saying one particular name out loud?

That is the question.

Personally, if I were asked what I see in a particular person, I would maybe rattle off a list of adjectives. In a mildly reductionist sense, it is possible to describe a person by a set of attributes. Therefore, perfunctory logic would suggest that if we discovered a person with the same set of attributes as our Chosen, we have also found an acceptable substitute for him/her, true? Sounds plausible, but simple observation tells me that in a distressingly large number of cases, it ain't so. Why?

Let's talk a little about these attributes. We can describe a person a million ways, but let's distill all those descriptions into two sweeping categories.

First, there are the Broad Characteristics. Things like intelligence, integrity, physical beauty, family values, social values. I call them broad, because it would seem that these would carry a lot of weight in the evaluation of a person.

And then there are the Little Things. Like how she used to turn and hold her head a little to the side when she was paying attention. Like how her eyes used to first flash and then narrow when she was mad. Like how her lips used to purse into a thin but delicious line when she was merely annoyed.

Oh you know, stuff like that. Unimportant, minor stuff.

... An exquisite, delightful, thin line.

Now here's something that is really mysterious. Let us say that I set out to find a substitute for my Chosen. I could, if I really really tried, meet perhaps a couple hundred women over my lifetime through the regular process of social networking. I don't think this is an exaggerated number in today's connected world. And as noted earlier, I will still find it very difficult to find a substitute. But why the heck is this the case? I find it very hard to believe that it is impossible to find -- among several hundred persons -- a person with a set of Broad Characteristics that is the same or better than our Chosen. Is it so very difficult to find someone whose intelligence, beauty and integrity match or exceed those of our Chosen? I don't think so.
[Note that I am making the rash assumption here that most folks' Chosen ones are not a cross between Einstein, Zeta-Jones and Lincoln. That WOULD be difficult to match.]

So what are we saying here? That it is not the broad characteristics that we seek when we seek to find a substitute? That we are, horror of horrors, shallow? That Love itself is shallow? Because it always, always, seeks those Little Things? Those Little Things which are impossible to find duplicates of. Is this why we cannot find her?

[P.S. I ask this question of you -- Rob and ~K and whoever else indulgent enough to read this -- only after asking it of myself. And I don't have the answer. So this is not an indirect sermon or hidden message of some sort. Far from it. Please let that be known and understood. And quite frankly, it is a pointless question. A pointless or content-free question is a question that when you have an answer to, you are no better off or enlightened than you were before. This question satisfies that classic definition quite nicely ;-)]
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