cygnoir.net

cygnoir.net

guesswork

Holidailies is a community writing project which begins this Friday. As a participant, I will be attempting to update my website each day from 5 December 2008 to 6 January 2009. Though I failed spectacularly at NaNoWriMo this year, I expect to be able to come up with at least 50 words or a photograph each day.

Instead of going to bed on time -- which, regardless of my late shift, I should be doing -- I am starting now with a tidbit of introspection. Quite a few topics have been rattling the old brain-pan lately, and the one at the top happens to be that of guesswork in friendships. I will elaborate: while at a dinner party last Saturday, I attempted to recall the name of an object. I speculated on the name, and asked other people if they knew the name; because of this, I had a pretense for conversation with both strangers and friends. I didn't look it up on my iPhone, although I could have. Later, when I confirmed the name of the object, I realized that it wasn't the knowledge that was important, but the shared search for knowledge.

We do this on the Web all the time now, and it takes us no time at all. But I remember a time before the Web when my friends and I would spend hours arguing at parties over the name of an object, or a lyric in a song, or the order of film releases. That argument solidified much of what I liked (or didn't) about my friends. We got to know each other not by what we knew about the world but by how we thought about the world. How someone guesses the answer to a question is much more valuable to me than whether or not s/he knows it.

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I acknowledge that I live and work on stolen Cowlitz, Clackamas, Atfalati, and Kalapuya land.
I give respect and reverence to those who came before me.

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