February 4th, 2011


term of art in need of replacement

baader-meinhof phenomenon

as i say to the person who alerted me to the term, i'm not sure i like this name for the phenomenon. it feels like someone used it to avoid legitimizing the phenomenon as an actual and not artificial perception.

it refers to the close proximity of observations of the same type of object, with a particular emphasis on newly acquired knowledge (e.g., you've never heard of michio kaku, but three people mention his name to you in the same day).

i'm not sure yet what i might call the narrower term, but i like phenotypical clustering for the broader. like just now, i went to make koolaid and the last packet was black cherry and then i went to the liquor cabinet to get something to bring to a dinner party tonight and grabbed a bottle of jim beam red stag bourbon which is infused with black cherry and in fact says "black cherry" in large font in two prominent places.

i think i'll bring some of this cherry coke zero in black cans with me as a mixer.

have a black cherry day.
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    fill up my cup, mazel tov!
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time flies like an arrow.

one must have an education

and after all the two generals, and socrates, the hero of delium, are still in ignorance of the nature of courage. they must go to school again, boys, old men and all.

they stayed to dinner with the couple that afternoon, and for half an hour afterward k. d. b. told them of the wonders of the caves of elephantis. one would have believed that she had actually been at the place. but when she changed the subject to the science of fortification, blix could no longer restrain herself.

"but it is really wonderful that you should know all these things! where did you find time to study so much?"

"one must have an education," returned k. d. b. primly.

but condy had caught sight of a half-filled book-shelf against the opposite wall, and had been suddenly smitten with an inspiration. on a leaf of his notebook he wrote: "try her on the g's and h's," and found means to show it furtively to blix. but blix was puzzled, and at the earliest opportunity condy himself said to the retired costume reader:

"speaking of fortifications, mrs. hoskins, gibraltar now--that's a wonderful rock, isn't it?"

"rock!" she queried. "i thought it was an island."

"oh, no; it's a fortress. they have a castle there--a castle, something like--well, like the old schloss at heidelberg. did you ever hear about or read about heidelberg university?"

but k. d. b. was all abroad now. gibraltar and heidelberg were unknown subjects to her, as were also inoculation, japan, and kosciusko. above the g's she was sound; below that point her ignorance was benighted.

"but what is it, condy?" demanded blix, as soon as they were alone.

"i've the idea," he answered, chuckling. "wait till after sunday to see if i'm right; then i'll tell you. it's a dollar to a paper dime, k. d. b. will have something for us by sunday, beginning with an i."

and she had. it was internal revenue.

"right! right!" condy shouted gleefully, as he and blix were on their way home. "i knew it. she's done with ash--bol, bol--car, and all those, and has worked through cod--dem, and dem--eve. she's down to hor--kin now, and she'll go through the whole lot before she's done--kin--mag, mag--mot, mot--pal, and all the rest."

"the encyclopaedia?"

"don't you see it? no wonder she didn't know beans about gibraltar! she hadn't come to the g's by then."

"she's reading the encyclopaedia."

"and she gets the volumes on the instahnent plan, don't you see? reads the leading articles, and then springs 'em on us. to know things and talk about em, that's her idea of being cultured. 'one must have an education.' do you remember her saying that' oh, our matrimonial objects are panning out beyond all expectation!"
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    hit the streets / they talk to me / a fickle beast / who's nice today
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47 ronin


eta: the tv radio channel at the party just played a song by a group i'd never heard of: black stone cherry