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It’s dificult to distinguish between social conventions and reality.

Wednesday, September 25, 2002

25 SEP 02

It’s not that I find words so fascinating, it’s what we do with them.

"Natural" is mistakenly used as a synonym for "good". There was (and may still be) a brand of cigarettes marketed as "all natural"; pesticides hadn’t been used on the tobacco and it might have been "organically" grown. "Organic" means that real pig shit was used as fertilizer. These cigarettes remained "all natural" despite being filter tipped. People fell for this. The cigarettes were even featured in Escape From L.A., a movie in which an EMP device zapped all higher technology and "set the human race back 500 years." I wonder where the one-eyed protagonist would get his cigarettes and Zippo refills after that.

"Unnatural" is, of course, baaaad…very bad. In pre-industrial times when one must assume that people lived very natural lives and were one with the earth, whether they liked it or not, life expectancy was about 40 years. But now, because of our sin of unnaturalness, we live about twice that long. Baaaad.

There are a few ponds on the central mall at Johnson Space Center. A flock of mallard ducks makes its home in one of the
ponds. In the spring of this year, I was having lunch by the duck pond. It was mating season. Some of the ducks were mating. Perfectly natural. It was also very ugly. Two of the drakes were fighting about knocking boots with one hen while they were knocking boots with her. They beat each other up to get laid and they beat her up to make her hold still and let them lay her. Perfectly natural.

"To put it rather bluntly, I am not the type who wants to go back to the land; I am the type who wants to go back to the hotel."

Fran Lebowitz

Thay…ith that any way for you fellowths to treat a lady?

posted by latiolais at 0800  

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