Monday, June 19, 2017

"Liquid, out of my body"

I had a rare moment before being completely awake this morning, where I was in the shower and had a thought that was not that far gone when I made a mistake based on it, causing me to focus and recall the details of the thought. You are always wondering if you think only in pictures, or only in words, or whether there are non verbal, non image modalities. But usually the thought is gone by the time you get around to considering these questions.

In detail: I have an infected ear that I was trying to sooth by standing in the shower and angling my head so the shower spray could reach as far as possible into my ear. I was also brushing my teeth - which is a little awkward with your head tilted a bit on its side. So when it came time to empty my ear, un-tilt my head and have the water drip out, I made a mistake: I spat out the tooth paste foam in my mouth instead. Immediately I set about looking back at the thought I had had that created the plan so poorly executed: the thought was a collection of pictures, held together in a narrative structure: I picture "Liquid" as a vesicle in my head, and "out from body" is a channel opening from that vesicle to the outside of my body, and the liquid escaping that way. For some reason I engaged the mouth "vesicle" rather than the ear "vesicle".
I do not know if "Liquid, out of my body" is a combination of ideas already resident in my mind, ready at any time to be used is situations of expelling liquids, as a fixed part of my planning/action repertoire. Or if such a plan could exist on-the-fly, meeting the needs of the situation creatively. In either case, the thought takes the form of pictures in a matrix of narrative.
So there Wittgenstein!

1 comment:

  1. A colleague, Jon Caplan, at work drew pictures of some elementary concepts of position (left, right, near, far) motion (into, out of, through,towards,away...) and location within a scale (high, low).

    Thus the "Liquid out of my body" is using key nouns: liquid, and body. And is using one on the concepts Jon was drawing. When you stop to realize that this is nearly the same as what the "Gamelon" company is doing, you think some people are on the right track.