January 20th, 2016 § Comments Off on ….of Rabbits and Hats § permalink
…or shall I say “in defense of crackpottery”?
I’ve said it before. I’ll say it again. Humanity is in a bit of a pinch just now. Need all the help we can get, yes?
It may be that in order to save our sorry asses we humans are going to need to pull a rabbit out of our collective hat any day now. And what if we’ve misplaced our hat? And what if we don’t believe in rabbits?
By the way, I don’t think Rupert Sheldrake is a classic Crackpot, though he intentionally plays the crackpot card often enough. I admire him, and here’s why. Sheldrake is playing Devil’s Advocate, and we need to hear it.
I’ve actually come to a bit of a decision, in part in response to Rupert Sheldrake’s latest book “Science Set Free”. I do not have an academic job. Unlike many people who aspire to understand Natural Philosophy, I have nothing to lose by riding the crackpot wave.
It is arguably my duty to speculate.
If people in my position – at least moderately scientifically informed, and not economically dependent upon being perceived as scientifically orthodox – don’t have the courage and, let us say it, self-deprecating humor to take a chance on looking foolish or gullible, then who will?
April 2nd, 2013 § Comments Off on Slomped § permalink
Driving the bus. 4 minutes down on my third trip of the day. The 4th trip at 8:30 can be crazy on a Tuesday. All the kids go to their Tuesday classes, I guess. I say to myself, “I better pick up these 4 minutes or I’m going to get slomped.”
“Slomped.” Where did that come from? I thought about it for a few seconds and figured it must have been some kind of a synthesizing double elision between “slammed” and “stomped”. I thought about John Lennon’s advice to George Harrison about finding the right word for a lyric – “you just keep saying the line over and over and saying whatever comes to mind in the empty place.”
Something in the way she moves
Attracts me like a rutabega
I thought of Pete Maravich’s game when no one, least of all Pistol Pete, knew what physical genius was about to instantiate.
Stevie Wonder’s melisma. Charlie Parker’s phrasing.
And then I thought, “hey, I bet my elision was actually between ‘slammed’ and ‘swamped’.” I hadn’t even had immediate access to my own thought processes in retrospect.
Take a flyer.
Trust the universes to provide for the completion of the gesture.
Embark upon the worthy gesture at a moments notice.
There was only one catch and that was Catch-22, which specified that a concern for one’s safety in the face of dangers that were real and immediate was the process of a rational mind. Orr was crazy and could be grounded. All he had to do was ask; and as soon as he did, he would no longer be crazy and would have to fly more missions. Orr would be crazy to fly more missions and sane if he didn’t, but if he were sane he had to fly them. If he flew them he was crazy and didn’t have to; but if he didn’t want to he was sane and had to. Yossarian was moved very deeply by the absolute simplicity of this clause of Catch-22 and let out a respectful whistle.