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Archive for March 30th, 2008

Unpromising Fortune

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unpromising fortune

Of course if one always promises nothing, then one can quite easily fulfill every single promise. But what would that be worth?

bumper sticker [] - adrien

Written by macheide

30 March 2008 at 2:21 pm

Posted in Adrien

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bottom of th cliff

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out in th burbs, popping a few towns further out th line so we could catch an express train into manhattan. we had to be in early for th second day of a two-day mathematics exam. i studied lightly, more to remind myself of th focus of th exam material than to learn anything i didn’t already know

when th next train arrived, i realized it was almost 10am already and that all of th other students had managed to catch earlier trains. i decided i must have dozed off, and i paused to wonder if i could have actually slept during what i knew to be a dream, trying to remember if i had dreamed anything during that missing period. it was starting to drizzle, and each train compartment was open like a convertible car, but th passengers already there shifted to make room for me and other boarding passengers. i was not at all anxious about how late th hour was, although i knew th examination session would have already re-started, since i knew that i knew th material well enough to do enough during th afternoon session to make a good score

when i arrived in town, i was led directly to th waiting area for a tv talk show instead of to th exam room. they’d already checked th morning results for th other students and had calculated that even if every student scored perfect scores during th 2nd day’s remaining afternoon session, and even if i were to somehow score zero on my entire second day’s work, i would still come through th entire exam with th best score of th group, therefore would win th prize of a special honorary seat in an upcoming chess tournament

as soon as th tv talk show host was told i had arrived, he invited me onstage and began interviewing me. he seemed very impressed at how i had done on th exam and spoke to me as though i had special secret knowledge about th game of chess and could be expected to sweep th upcoming tournament th same way i’d done with th math exam. after several interview questions made it clear to me how misdirected his awe was, i interrupted to explain that although there were certain parallels between math competence and chess ability, th connection was nowhere near tight enough to expect that i could overcome my inexperience with th game itself. when th tv talk show host looked confused at my explanation, i pointed out that this tournament would also have th current world chess champion and th reigning u.s. chess champion, observing that it was as though i were facing a 1000-mile-high cliff straight up with no handholds, and that my luck in scoring best on this math exam was no more than climbing up th first 100 feet of that cliff at most, compared to th u.s. chess champion being a hundred miles above me and th world champion being perched at th very top 1000 miles up

Bumper Sticker [] - oneirra

Written by macheide

30 March 2008 at 7:07 am

Posted in oneirra