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Wednesday January 1st 2014  Tim Candler

 

      A time comes when you can't remember things.  So when looking into the past, mirrors cloud, and not much can be relied upon.  My own view is that such mistiness should not interfere with the inventions of memory, and here I'd like to try to recall the first time I heard the phrase "very intelligent."  Nor, and on this you can trust me, was this a phrase directed at me. I can distinctly remember thinking, "What's that got to do with anything!"  And because the "he" who was "very intelligent" sat smug as a snail, yet totally without the charm of eye stalks, I chose to devolve into what I will call "Rampant Nescience," a deliberate unchecked ignorance.  You can call it an antagonistic reaction, if you wish to, but I'd rather think of it as a reaction to "not knowing the Latin for table."  An entirely limbic response in me, because I could feel the flow of emotion, hunting down solace.

        Older now, I understand that past moment as an attempt to train me, form my young mind, make me useful.  Think of it as "patriot" if you wish to, a dialectic, a give and take in the great unknown. And all very sensible had I chosen obedience. "Once more over the hill, my friends."  And we all know what doing the same thing over and over again is symptomatic of.  But quite clearly rampant nescience still runs true in me, because recently I have decided that I am more like plant than like a person.  So join me on a truly frigid first day of a new year, as we revel in the brilliant expression "The Fetishization of Neurons."  Not my phrase, it belongs to Stefano Mancuso. And because I cannot insult him with "very intelligent," I think when the weather improves, my better tribute, is to dig a small temple to him. Over there, just beyond Saint Teresa of Avila.

 


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