Human Genesis: a definition

If I need a break from an desk-bound activity (say, grading exams), I sometimes hop on over to Youtube’s homepage just to see what they have featured. Within a minute or two I can usually find a video that is interesting enough to feel satisfied that I’ve relaxed and can go back to work. The feature tonight was Rube Goldberg machines:

Rube Goldberg was a genius, if only for the simple reason that he was clever enough to get his name attached to machines that would appear so clever as to forever link their designers with Rube Goldberg, in that the machine is genius enough to be associated with those genius machines Rube Goldberg created, or at least was clever enough to get his name forever attached to machines that would appear so clever as to forever… Feel free to repeat ad nauseam. Especially to friends who will think you clever for being able to rattle off such a gordian logic knot. Though I should warn you that if you try such a trick you very well might lose your friends unless a) your friends are actually amused, which would make them just the sort of person who would befriend a person who would read such a riddle and consider it something worth memorizing despite a rather snarky adjudication against the types of people who would memorize such a thing.

Of course, in that you ignore the warning, you exonerate its rather impolite perspective. A perspective which depends heavily on specification and generalization, to name a few, of the types of people who do certain things like read this blog. Or blogs in general, as a blog in specific is little more than a noted blog in general, as are its readers. Much like a reader of a book. An author, of course, certainly considers and crafts his creation to suit his audience, which is rather odd if you are writing a transformative self-help book. Forgive me—all books are intended to help selves, though which self is not necessarily publicly proclaimed and probably privately self referential and absurd. Which is a second reference in recent posts to such terminology (shameless self-promotion [pulled that out of the trite bloggy bag {like that? |yet another overused bloggerism—the direct appeal for comments ~though some of the blogging greats use such tactics ^shoutout!^~|}]). I think I just created a new emoticon.

…in a Rube Goldberg machine knockoff.

Static v Clarity or Circumlocution

alize I should probably clean my bathroom floor. Except I feel I just cleaned it because I’d been planning to remake my bed after washing it last. I didn’t, though, because after I washed it last time, I had to finish washing the kitchen and life-room floors. When I finished washing the floors, I planned to wash my cleaning rags, but figured I should wait to do that until I had finished washing and drying the dishes so I could include the towels and dishcloth. Only, it was about dinner time, so I had to dirty some dishes to make food. I struggled a little with dinner because I couldn’t find my favorite spatula until I remembered I had used it to make an egg at lunch, so it was dirty. So I washed it—and a few other things while I waited for the rice to finish. staticI ate at my desk, like normal, while I wrote on a few Facebook walls. I had seen the generative messages on my wall a few days before, but I had been taking a break from grading to write a blog post at the time, so I didn’t want to stop and respond. My desk was still a little messy with the odds and ends I had set on it to get them out of the way while I dusted and swept, so I didn’t really feel bad leaving my bowl on the desk until I finished my messages. One of my students IMed me with a question about class, so I broke off Facebook to check what I’d assigned last week and remembered I needed to make copies for class the next day. I got back with my copies and realized I hadn’t stopped at the store as I had intended to, so I’d have to go to out between class and my SAC the next night. That was cool, though, ’cause it reduced my demand for dishes. Of course, when the SAC was over, I was too tired to do much more than read a few chapters before drifting off to sleep. Sleeping in was OK—to make up for getting to bed so late—since it was a class-less morning, a day to finish the odd jobs I’d been putting off. I washed up some dishes and called back my friend that had been trying to reach me when I had been at class and SAC, then realized I was hungry. Lacking food in the house, since I had forgotten to go to the store, I headed out to get some. Walking near the bookstore, I remembered the email I had promised to send a friend, so I took care of that as soon as I got back—even before putting away the groceries. I couldn’t really bring myself to dirty the dishes I’d just washed, though, so I ate an apple and planned on an early dinner. Of course, the apple was with the food I had shelved on my bed to write the email, so when it was consumed and the rest were put away, my bed needed straightening. It was about time to change the sheets, and I was in a cleaning mood, so I pulled off the old sheets and put on new, but realized I couldn’t wash the old ones because I had finished off the bleach last time I cleaned the bathroom. I’d just been to the store, though, and I wasn’t going back out to get bleach. Besides, it would be easier to pick that up when I restocked my cleaning supplies, but I usually did that at Walmart, which meant taking a few hours, and I’d probably want to get some of the less-locally-available foods when I was there anyway, and since I’d just bought food, I didn’t need to buy more at Walmart, so the sheets could wait with the cleaning rags to be washed. Anyway, my last trip to Walmart had reminded me that I should get a new ink cartridge, which required a trip downtown, so maybe I should make that trip this weekend. Which means moving lesson planning to a new time, as I had done this week’s lesson plans after my Walmart trip and that didn’t work so well. And shouldn’t I be establishing a regular time to do lesson plans by now? Don’t I know what a normal week looks like? Of course, my friends didn’t—I needed to message them about when we would meet next since the new EC time might conflict with our original plan. So I sent that message and realized I had been waiting on an email from another teacher, so I checked on that before heading out to dinner. Quick mirror check: looks OK, except the mirror is dirty. I should probably clean it. Of course, then again, the whole bathroom could stand another cleaning—especially the floor. I’ll do that as soo