I wish I knew how it would feel to be free Nov 16, 2011

Did you know there's no such thing as a table? "Table" is a memetic virus. It's something that infects the way you perceive reality so that when you see some things, you think, "That's a table." This is how tables survive; they are brain parasites. They lie dormant in the minds of billions of humans, waiting to manifest. The people who design tables are the primary reproductive channel for tables. In the old days, table reproduction was a little more straightforward, and a lot more tenuous for tables. No giant factories churning out shrink-wrapped cubes to be assembled in your home, where your latent table virus will guide your hands to screw those long bits into the bottom of that flat bit. You put down your coffee and your magazines and somewhere in the back of your brain the table neurons are saying, "YES. YES THAT IS A TABLE UNDER THAT CLUTTER. TAAABLLLLLE."

There is no way out. We can't be free of these pestilent surfaces. Our greatest victory can be the realization that a table is simply an arrangement of atoms. It was once plants (imagine the plants in their native habitat), and minerals (deep below the surface) for the screws or nails (if present). If it is not wood, at the very least it came from the stars. A table can be cut in half and it is, in a sense, no longer a table. But here's the really scary part. Let's say---hypothetically---we eliminated every table. We burned them in great piles in the streets. And we waited a generation for the idea of the table to fall from the face of the Earth. How long do you think it would be before the first new table appeared under the diligent hands of a joiner?

The joiner runs sandpaper lovingly over the curves of the last leg.


Linked from: circles, word-begets-image-and-image-is-virus