What’s the point ?

If you can’t learn from mistakes ? Just joining up some dots between simple mistakes and the meaning of life, the universe and everything. Thanks to Arlo and Ron (on MOQ-Discuss) for this Swiftian Monty Python quote that prompted the thought.

“We must never forget that, if there was not one thing that was on top of another thing, our society would be nothing more than a meaningless body of men gathered together for no good purpose.”

Society for Putting Things on Top of Other Things

And talking of other things … where did I see this Catch-22 (Joseph Heller) quote the other day ?

What does a fish remind you of ?
Other fish.
What do the other fish remind you of ?
Other fish.

Which reminds me “Fed Squid” to close that circle of life. Thanks Arlo.

Conspiracy Theories

“Superstition brings bad luck” Ray Smullyan 5000BC

There exists a secret society with branches throughout the world, and its plot is to spread the rumour that a universal plot exists. Synarchy – a new European order led by a government of wise men, above party lines – […]  is a plot of international technocrats.

It’s like the story of the man with the bad stammer who complains that the radio station wouldn’t hire him as an announcer because he didn’t carry a party card. We always have to blame our failures on somebody else, and dictatorships always need an external enemy to bind their followers together. As the man said, for every complex problem there’s a simple solution, and it’s wrong.

And if, on a train I find a bomb wrapped in a flyer that speaks about synarchy, is it enough for me to say that this is a simple solution to a complex problem?

Of course [there] is only one thing to understand. Synarchy is God. […] people put bombs on trains because they are looking for God?

Umberto Eco “Foucault’s Pendulum” (1989)

ZMM Brainwashing

Interesting reference in Umberto Eco’s “Foucault’s Pendulum” – the book is (a fiction) about a germ of deadly truth behind endless crackpot mystical and occult theories of mythical conspiracies of Aryan, Hebrew, Templar, Catholic, Masonic
coincidences and cabals.

I’m only 40% through, but whilst Eco doesn’t mention Pirsig or ZMM work by name he does include this phrase.

“To avenge the bourgeoisie you hadn’t managed to overthrow, [you] sold them videos and fanzines, brainwashed them with Zen and the art of motorcycle maintenance. […] You’re not taking me seriously by any chance, are you ?”

Probably no coincidence that Mystic Bourgeoisie (Chris Locke’s) alter-ego Rage Boy has Eco’s Foucault’s Pendulum as one of their top picks over on Entropy Gradient Reversals ? [Earlier post from 2005]