Monday, May 5, 2008

on the failures of logic/ how logic failed me/ - hi, this is my first meeting

____think twice before you think
________ee cummings

paris, pancho tolchinsky

Statistically, of all the infinite possibilities that exist in a particular situation, only one of them is the 'good' one. For example, in going to see a film: you lose your keys, you can't find your wallet, you get in the car but there's no gas. There's a car accident on the way and the roads are blocked. you yourself get in a car accident (you are texting and are distracted. it's not your fault, someone hits you. your foot gets stuck behind the pedal. the roads are wet and slippery). you arrive at the cinema but the show is sold out. the show is not sold out, but half the seats were cleaned just this morning and are not yet dry. You've missed the previews now and what's the point anyway? ____See? For something to 'work-out', the infinite number of possibilities of things going wrong have to be thwarted.

The analogy can be extended to almost anything... our body works on the process of cell replication. It is a fragile system that is prime for a mistake at any time. One molecule floats along and bumps into another one. This causes a change from one conformation to another, a third something passes through into another space, something ticks past and bumps into the first something, everything shifts into another conformation, everyone's happy, you start to synthesize a new protein. This happens to the billions of cells you have billions of times and almost never goes wrong.

My point is this: statistically, life is hazardous. frightening. dangerous. everything (everything is prone to failure). flawlessness does not exist. televisions should break down daily. cars should sputter dark fumes. planes should fall from the sky. friends should betray us by the second. you should never get the job because of the 5 billion people that live on our planet, too many of them are smarter than you. more determined than you. more committed than you. and cuter than you. They also happen to have a better resume than you, better contacts than you and happen to be perfect for the job you want for no reason other than: it's soo cool dude.

But people get the jobs they want all the time. Things work. Sometimes, at the last minute, you work out why the amp is not turning on, and you fix it. You are a hero. You defy odds and do well on exams. (you defy odds and do badly on exams). The boy who spoke to you when you were 11 years old happens to still call you a friend. The chances of such things happening are... slim-to-none.

Dear Logic:

I have thought about this for a while now. You know we've been together a long time. I carry you in my compass and in my protractor and in my contact lenses, and I use you often. I calculate earthquakes (that never happen), I measure hailstorms (that probably wouldn't have happened if I hadn't camped out preparing for it), and I make itineraries for the various plagues I'll no doubt endure (thus ruining my perfectly fine health with worry). In short, you suck pretty bad... and this world does not run on logic.

See ya never.

How am I going to refute this logic-thing? It takes me about 2 seconds to fall in love. A feat that defies all reason. When I read Emily Dickinson I get goosebumps, and Neruda. I am certain that testy Brahms would have liked me. I should never have gotten accepted to medical school. Last year was a miracle of misfortune that only a prophet's didactic allegory could imagine. In short, we exist daily under circumstances that ought to destroy us. We walk away smiling and laughing. We succeed at tasks we cannot even spell, and truths that were set in stone manage to crack out, stretch, and walk away carelessly.

This is not a world that exists because of logic. I pray and am certain of things I cannot even distill into ideas (to translate into words). I simply know things that are not yet things.

I am a tired man. I have failed at a great many things I should have succeeded at; and succeeded at a great many I ought to have failed. In short, the only consistent truth is the precarious nature of this life. It is Tuesday, 1:05am. I am tired, bored of this idea since I've been thinking about it all day. and mostly: relieved to be rid of its burden.

Dear world:
you are truest when you are in my heart, and my heart has a logic all of its own. The logic of lips-kissing, prayers mumbled half-asleep during fast mornings, and Shostakovich. In short, the logic of love, faith, and art. In short I predict: mayhem. pandemonium. raucous. and if anyone believed we could be born twice they'd call one death (cummings).


Sholeh said...

It makes belief in God all the more real, for me.

capone said...
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