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Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Evidence that trying to make sense of anything is a futile occupation

Let's play Spot the Link.  Here are some happenings from my day.  Can you see the connection between them all?  (That question was ironic and you will see why later.)

Happening 1.  Online chat.   I am learning to use the chat facility on Skype so I can talk to The Daughter in Japan.  The randomness of the resulting conversations, with one person typing a response to a question which was asked two questions ago, takes some getting used to when you're forty-blah and do that What-Did-I-Come-Up-Here-For? thing at the top of the stairs at least once a day.

A couple of excerpts ...

a) hello, are you there?
why.  has everyone else gone out?  what time is it
11:41
Mostly.  Hello.
i'm so bored



b) sounds good. i need to start writing that essay, but i still have no idea what to write
ben barnes!  oh wow.  that will be a trip to london ...
did you just have to google ben barnes to find out who he was?
ah yes - which essay was this?  the one about the proof that religion is good?  No i didn't google ben barnes.  it just took a while to register.  ner ner ner ner ner
yes, that essay
and i know! i really want to see it!!
i'm not sure whether it started already - i know about it from a bbc news article interviewing him about it, but i don't know at what stage the production was at
we are having two conversations at once
 i do that a lot on instant messaging, especially when both people are very fast typists
vry fst tpists?
oh, don't
wt?
um, essay, yes
the title is "can religion ever contribute to peace?"
just put 'maybe - find out yourself, you lazy apeth'

Happening 2.  The returned postcard.  A week or so ago, there was a postcard included in some information put through the door from the local council about recycling.  If you filled in the postcard with your name and address and sent it back to the Waste Management Services Department, they would enter you in a competition to win £250.  We decided we would.  (Hey, it's not THAT sad!  You'd soon change your tune if we won.)

You had to write your address on the left hand side of the postcard, and they had already printed theirs on the right hand side.  (There's a reason for all these italics.  Go and fetch another glass of wine and come back.)  

This morning, we got the postcard back, which means that rather than delivering it to the printed address of the Waste Management Department on the right hand side (the normal pattern, yeah?) they had redelivered it to the address on the left hand side (not the normal pattern, yeah?). 

So, our entry into the recycling competition has been recycled and sent back to us.  We are currently considering whether to start the process all over again.  

Happening 3.  Beckett's 'Waiting for Godot'.  When I haven't been randomly-online-chatting or recycled-postcard-receiving, I have been reading this play today and making an attempt at coherent notes on it (ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha .... I said, ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha).  I have also been watching as many clips of it as possible on Youtube (here's the very very very bestest one - the Muppets version ...)  As a result, much of my day has been spent trying to make some sense out of conversations between the two main characters in the play which go something like this (the following extract is not quoted verbatim ...):

let's go
okay then
but we can't
why not
because we're waiting
waiting for what
godot
okay then.  can you help me on with this boot?
is it a boot
it was yesterday
are you sure
no
ah
maybe it's a tree
it was a boot yesterday - i think i recognise it
but did it recognise you
i don't know - let's go
we can't 
why
we're waiting for godot
we are?
here, give me a hug
no, i think i can do better without you
so why don't you
because life is meaningless
like this conversation?
you're right there, me old chum - fancy starring in something by Oscar Wilde next time?

Little Baby was blissfully unaware that puzzlement and consternation were not just mind states
reserved for the very young


Okay, that's my three Happenings.  Can you Spot the Link?  Or am I being cruel to you, considering that the only real link here is a lack of links?

I wonder what the evening has in store for me.  As far as I know, we're just going to have some baked potatoes with leftover curry from yesterday, and then I'm going to do some more work to prepare for school next week.

But who knows ....?  Who knows?......  

20 comments:

  1. I don't do irony between Christmas and New Year. Your recycling postcard episode induced a fit of giggles - so uncomfortable since I had just polished off the last of the chocolate cheesecake.

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  2. It all sounds far too confusing to me, Fran. Better we stay away from trying to comprehend it all at this time. How can we be expected to actually THINK about things when we're not sure whether it's still Christmas and therefore acceptable to have chocolate and champagne for elevenses?

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  3. Steve - more likely chocolate.

    Christine - you didn't leave me any of the chocolate cheesecake? Spoilsport.

    Katie - Let me tell you, it's acceptable. Sorted?

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  4. I think I've worked it out - but I had to read it through several times, and I did as you told me and went off and had a glass of wine each time, hic - I know - you're Godot's mother, is that the link? I still don't quite get the Waste Management Services one, though - did they win, and do you have to pay them the £250? More wine, vicar? ;)

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  5. I think the link in all three is miscommunication and the irony is that you are trying to "communicate" miscommunication. Am I right? Did I win 250 pounds?
    P.S. If the muppets, in all their awesomeness, can't make sense of it, no one can.

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  6. Vintage - you got it. I'm Mama Godot. Now, where is that child? I've been waiting for him to come in for his tea, and it's been ages ...

    dbs - You won! You won the £250! (By the way, who decided on a £250 prize? I'm sure I never did. Vintage, was that you?) Anyway, you get the prize, dbs. Now, where did I put my purse .....?

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  7. Er... were you listening round my table this Christmas ? You know my guests- GP etc...???

    They left BUT they never REALLY left ........ FOG = NO FLIGHTS OUT !!! Actually they are spending time in Southampton. STILL.

    I do like coming over here - makes me feel normal.

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  8. I don't know...I am not quick witted this evening.
    All I know is I'd put the stupid postcard in an envelope and send it again.

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  9. I think you should just sit in a dustbin and wait for the sky to fall on your head.

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  10. bad penny - if coming over here makes you feel normal, see a therapist immediately.

    June - put it in an envelope? How can I enter a recycling competition by using an extra envelope?

    Isabelle - I'm sure all my other followers agree with you. I seem to have exhausted everyone with this obscure post and will try to do better.

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  11. Just on the offchance, if there is someone out there who happens to be an expert on the subject of whether religion can contribute to peace, I would LOVE to hear from you.

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  12. How can you enter a recycling contest if your entry won't go?

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  13. The Japanese Student - Huh! Mother's help not enough, eh? Huh!

    June - exactly, exactly. As I said, none of it makes sense. Another Walnut Whip needed, just in case that helps ...

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  14. I didn't mean that as an insult! I just meant - do something senseless...

    My brain is a bit scrambled because of my prospective grannyhood.

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  15. Sometimes sending something into the mail is like throwing a boomerang. It happened to me with a parcel - the address I wanted it to go to was large and in the right place, and then, in tiny writing on the back, marked 'sender's address', was my address. The result was it came back to me. It was like fate was giving me another chance to keep the parcel for myself. I must admit I was tempted. Does a recycling postcard grab you the same way? It could be a sign!

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  16. Isabelle - not taken as insult, honestly. How could I take offence from a sweet, gentle granny-to-be?

    Jayne - funnily enough, getting the postcard back was NOT the highlight of my day, no. A parcel, yes, perhaps. I wouldn't have minded getting back the parcel I sent to the Japanese Student because it was the cutest stuffed duck I'd ever seen. And there were some Crunchies in the packet.

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  17. Just put the postcard in a recycled envelope .
    And as for the rest ? Flaunting a nodding acquaintance with Godot , Skype and sms's has a lowering effect on we who have just turned our train card into a chip card ( sort of nation-wide Dutch Oyster card ) only to be told off for using it on a local train three days early .
    Wine is called for . ( Then you can tell me that it should be us in the above paragraph ....or not )

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  18. You're all wrong. The link is a set of human teeth, 400,000 years old, that I've unearthed from the virtual books of Being Me. If that doesn't throw all of our accepted notions into the dustbin then we haven't had nearly enough wine.

    Fran, I love your not quite verbatim rehash of the play.

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  19. I won! The 250p. was my attempt at extending the miscommunication. Get it? Yeah I know. I'm an idiot. No payment necessary; just have a great new year.

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