Sunday, August 31, 2008

Tim and Socrates

It's never too late to learn. At least that's what Tim thinks when it comes to the Continuing Education of Happy. He and I are working on the Socratic Method. Socrates was the guy who invented modern medicine among the Greeks. Just kidding. Even I know that dude was Hippopotamus.

The Socratic Method is a means by which a fool and his interlocutor determine the random fallacious arguments made by the fool. The interlocutor asks the fool a question, the fool foolishly answers, and then the interlocutor rips the fool a new one, if you know what I mean.

Tim hasn't ripped me a new one, yet, although he does at times ask me very puzzling and difficult questions. Most of these have to do with odd cultural references or something about the iPhone, clearly stuff I don't need to know. For example, "Happy, how many angels can square dance on the head of a pin?" The answer, of course, is one. Consider, for a moment, that the head of a pin is on a point and is, in fact, a point in space. We know from physics (and by extension, in this particular case, metaphysics) that two angels cannot occupy the same point in space. Ergo at most only one angel can square dance on the head of a pin; however, how can only one angel square dance on the head of a pin? This is a difficult question, because it takes eight angels to square dance.

Consider, that at Tim's program in square dancing (Basic Challenge), that a single angel could be dancing with as many as seven phantoms (although it is more likely that the angel would only be dancing with two other phantoms). However, the angel in our illustration is constrained by a single point in space, and, therefore, must be dancing with seven phantoms in order to satisfactorily answer the question, "How many angels can square dance on the head of a pin?"

When Tim uses this method of elucidation on me, he tires of it very quickly. He will often just ask me a question, then let me carry on the rest of the Socratic interview with myself. I have to admit that this is easier than having him constantly interrupt me with logic and facts. Logic and facts should never get in the way of a good baseless argument.

2 comments:

Sarah said...

not that this comment has much to do with this particular post....but now that we're "friends" on facebook, i decided to check out the ol' blog address you had listed. maybe it's a little TMI for someone so closely related...a few of your posts actually made me blush! now that you know i will be eavesdropping every so often, maybe you will be a little more less inclined to speak of things such as nude square-dancing and scrotum hair. but then again, probably not....happy blogging, friend!

p.s. your questions for straight men are truly fascinating. i can tell you from experience--all men shave everything at one point or another, even if it's just out of sheer curiosity. does that help?

p.p.s. i hope this is all read in the spirit of fun, just as your blog is written....perhaps now you're rethinking your friendship request?

Happy said...

Sarah, I appreciate your comment, and indeed, I do sometimes engage in TMI, and I apologize for any blushing. One of the purposes of this blog is to explore in public the private life, not for its prurience or tastelessness (although some would assert that my life has both...), but because we know so little about each other.

The reality of our lives is very different than what others imagine, and I'm trying, in a humorous way, to show some of that difference. not to shock (although that's a possibility) but to show some insight into a middle-aged, gay man's life, and the life of his family and friends.

Please continue to eavesdrop. I admit, that I eavesdrop on your blog, too, and I'm amazed at your life and your family, and grateful for the wonderful person you've become. I try to be honest in my blog, and I'll continue to be full of curiosity.

No, I'm not going to rethink my FaceBook friendship request. If I can't be friends with you, it will be a sad day, indeed. You'll always be in my thoughts and heart.