Saturday, April 10, 2010

Scatter

Unless a narrow theme binds them into instant recognizability—this blog is about football, this blog opposes war—individual posts are like a scatter of random particles, and looking at any one of them in isolation may seem rather puzzling to the person landing on a page by happenstance. I note the puzzlement of many newcomers who, if arrested by the content of the post at all, then seek some shortcut to rapid classification by clicking on the “about” (or its functional equivalent) in search of clues about my ideology. In other less chaotic, dynamic, or confusing times other markers served this purpose: the person’s age, the uniform (clerical garb, the sword, the shield, courtly dress), marks of class, frowning demeanor, accent. That sort of thing is also present still, reflected by print. When I land on a site where the speling is bed and i isn’t capitalized and people do a lot of lol, I do know at minimum that I’m not reading folk my age. And my writing is for many a warning sign already—or a signal to relax. Wondrous, wondrous, phenomenon. Seeking this, seeking that. Many seek facts. They find them here but then (I realize) they’re really seeking something else. They seek authority. The information must be qualified. So let’s click ABOUT and discover if this guy comes with ample qualification to say that which he said. Let’s look on his chest to see what decorations pend there. (And word usage like that, to be sure, will signal phony, phony to lots of readers.) The same facts wrapped in rebellion, rage, approval, disdain, analytical dissection, historical precedents, modern referents, etc., etc., will please now this, now that individual. Humor alone will most likely arrest the majority and cause the visitors at least to read. Strange that, when you think about it. The restless classifying mind, fiercely determined to orient itself, Quickly, already! will be paralyzed by humor so that the soul hidden behind the intellect can, freed for a moment, have a moment’s enjoyment.

2 comments:

  1. Quite poetic, although not a poem. I guess that's why you didn't check the category lable "poems." Yet, it is quite poetic!

    And, the point about humor is a very deep one. It is odd how humor, of all the emotions, seems to open its recipient like none other, if only briefly.

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  2. The psychological insight in that last sentence comes from traditional sources, naming which distracts attention from the point. I was "the finder," not the inventor. If you can't be good, it's good to be lucky...

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