Monday Aphorism: A Mere Inept

flickr photo by stevegarfield, cc-by

The famous humanistic writer confessed that it was only last year that he bought an electric typewriter, his first movement in the direction of high(er) technology. He wasn’t hostile, he said, merely inept.

A mere inept, merely inept, the words and concepts run around in my mind’s conjurings, wondering what this comment represents: a confessional that he is famous and yet not good at the manufactured things in life? – an olive branch to the technology that has accelerated faster than he has been able to realize because he has been busy being a literary critic and the social times he criticizes are running with him, at his pace? – a mere statement because he does not do all of what he might, and we might, expect?

No mere inept. I ponder what this means, berate my self that I do not know all technologies, am tempted to dismiss this statement with a scoffing, scathing, muttering, sneering at the words in some stretching-out which conveys the contempt I think I should have – “meeere in-eept”: merely, merely; in-ept, inept!

A sudden sadness that the possibilities of knowing all there is, has evaporated from anyone’s life’s realities. I try to forgive myself; no mere inept, my fingers grasp this stem of black plastic holding metal ball screeching over paper depositing some substance, writing in lines which have gained meaning, writing which was invented, a technology of not so very long ago, to be placed upon a word processor full of plastics and refined metals and chips and connections and… A mere inept, twenty books later, pondering upon the times.

His theater, no mere inept, takes us to so many places that we are persuaded to take him at face value…

  • Brenden Haukos

     A Bad Habit…

    When considering habits, I like to think first of a monk’s garb…of how a body chosen, or shall who say “who chooses”, to follow the way of the ascetic in, here, the Roman Catholic tradition…of how this body bears as clothing, ritually, the habit.  To cover his nakedness.

    I like to think that the best monk…or the monk, in his best-lived life…I like to think he has gotten beyond shame.  Even then, his habit will still go far in protecting, from cold, or the sun’s potentially destructive rays.  And his shall-we-say nondescript garb even goes so far as to decorate the monk’s life.  To lend it a certain…specific…style.

    Yes…and who among us can live without habits?  If freedom permits even one of us such tremendous liberty, we still of course live among others’ habits.

    Now that even a study of Huxely’s “The Art of Seeing” cannot correct my naked eyes to an adequate degree, I ponder the meaning of reading for me.  How my vision has deteriorated during times of reading in poor light…or reading for reading’s sake, after the energy I have had for it is long gone.  And I also ponder over the subject of how the presence I have given to books, to the dead letter, has made me inanimate before the persons now present to me, now gone…

    Lao Tzu writes that a sign of true moderation is the ability to be free of one’s own ideas.  My idea is that reading has, for me, become a bad habit, a harmful addiction.  But my trial seems to be whether I can go on reading…to read moderately…when reading has always become unhealthy for me.  Another idea has been…and this has worked at various times…for a time…to “quit reading altogether”…another idea, hardly moderate…