"Begin at the beginning,and go on till you come to the end: then stop." (Lewis Carroll, 1832-1896)

Alice came to a fork in the road. "Which road do I take?" she asked."Where do you want to go?" responded the Cheshire cat."I don't know," Alice answered."Then," said the cat, "it doesn't matter."

"So long as I get somewhere," Alice added as an explanation. "Oh, you're sure to do that," said the Cat, "if you only walk long enough."

"All right," said the Cat; and this time it vanished quite slowly, beginning with the end of the tail, and ending with the grin, which remained some time after the rest of it had gone. "Well! I've often seen a cat without a grin," thought Alice; "but a grin without a cat! It's the most curious thing I ever saw in my life!"

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Location: Australia

I am diagonally parked in a parallel universe. Like Arthur Dent from "Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy", if you do not have a Babel Fish in your ear this blog will be completely unintelligible to you and will read something like this: "boggle, google, snoggle, slurp, slurp, dingleberry to the power of 10". Fortunately, those who have had the Babel Fish inserted in their ear, will understood this blog perfectly. If you are familiar with this technology, you will know that the Babel Fish lives on brainwave radiation. It excretes energy in the form of exactly the correct brainwaves needed by its host to understand what was just said; or in this case, what was read. The Babel Fish, thanks to scientific research, reverses the problem defined by its namesake in the Tower of Babel, where a deity was supposedly inspired to confuse the human race by making them unable to understand each other.


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Saturday, December 02, 2006

The Answer Is X

"X Is The Answer" - A Conversation In Two Parts
The answer is X.
What do you mean the answer is X?
The answer is X.
But X doesn't mean anything..
Yes, it does, it means X.
Is X a letter?
What does X stand for?
It stands for X.
Is it an animal, a mineral, a plant?
No, it is X.
Is it a process, a theory, a hypothesis, a conclusion?
No, it is just X.
You're being silly now.
X doesn't think so.
What do you mean X doesn't think so! You just said that X doesn't stand for anything, so how can it think anything?
Well, X just is.
X is just what? !
X just is.
Hmmmm. If X is the answer, what is the question?
If the answer is X, then the question should be X.
So if the question is X, the answer should be X?
Why isn't Y the question?
If Y was the question, the answer should be Y.
Why can't Y be the question and X the answer?
Don't be silly. Then it wouldn't make sense.
It doesn't make sense already!
Yes, it does. Obviously Y is Y. It would be a pretty crazy world if X was Y and Y was X. Don't you think?
Ok. If X is just X, what is Y?
Y is Y.
Grrrrrr. What is X again?
X is X and if X is the question, the answer should be X.
So X is the question.?
If you say so...
What do you mean, if I say so? You just said that if X was the question then the answer should be X!
Yes. The answer should be X, but ONLY if the question was X. I didn't say the question WAS X.
So, the answer mightn't be X at all?
That's right. The answer depends on the question.
So, how do I know what the answer is?
The answer should be directly related to the question.
And the question will be directly related to the answer?
But you just said that the question was X and the answer was X and that the question was Y, and the answer was Y.
Yes, I did.
So, if I know the answer is X, then the question must be X.
No. Sometimes people supply the wrong answer to the right question.
So, the question is the most important thing?
How will I know if I have the right question?
There are no right and wrong questions.
But you just said that the question is the most important thing!
Yes. The question is extremely important. Some people ask X and end up with the answer Y, or Z.
Don't tell me. If Y is the question, Y should be the answer. But if Y is the answer, the question might not be Y. And if Z is the question, Z should be the answer. But if Z is the answer, the question might not be Z?
By jove! You've got it!!
Got what?
X, of course...


As way of explanation: -

In "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" by Douglas Adams, there is a computer named 'Deep Thought' which was built by a race of super intelligent beings in order to calculate the answer to the ultimate question of life, the universe, and everything. When the answer is revealed as by 'Deep Thought' as 42, it evokes this reaction.

"Forty-two!" yelled Loonquawl. "Is that all you've got to show for seven and a half million years' work?" "I checked it very thoroughly," said the computer, "and that quite definitely is the answer.

I think the problem, to be quite honest with you, is that you've never actually known what the question is."

And so it is, most of us concern ourselves with the answer, whereas we should be spending more of our time on the question.

"The question you’re not supposed to ask is the important one." - Mason Cooley

The part in "Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy" where 'Deep Thought' provides THE ANSWER.

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Anonymous ted said...

How many roads must a man walk down? ;)

3/12/06 9:29 am  
Blogger Krystalline Apostate said...

Wow. That was like an existential version of 'Who's on first' via Abbot & Costello.

3/12/06 10:28 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE ted: yes. That is what the question ended up being in the story! ;)

RE KA: yeah, I love that comedy sketch. It is one of the classics. :)

3/12/06 11:37 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE ted:

Sadly, the X thing makes sense to me, but I have never pretended to be "normal." (whatever that really represents)

3/12/06 11:38 am  
Anonymous ted said...

It made perfect sense to me too Beep. I got to "Yes it does, it means X" and thought "x = 42!". I was quite chuffed I picked it up so soon...:)

I have to agree with KA though...:)

3/12/06 7:14 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE ted: It is a rather convoluted way of suggesting that where there is an unsatisfactory question, there will be an unsatisfactory answer.

3/12/06 8:28 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i read it to my daughter and she loved it.. printed it out and everything. aaaandd.... we rented hitchhiker and just saw it on dvd. thanks for ejiukayting us!

4/12/06 5:40 am  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE tribbles

You're welcome. You guys edjumacate me too :)

4/12/06 10:58 am  
Blogger fizzlesticks said...

I think you just nailed religion with that dialogue. Nice.

5/12/06 11:54 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i dont think x is only the answer to damn x question but rather to more questions.To more than 48 i believe...
And one thing that interested me the most is why people are trying to get damn specific answer...why already X is availabe.
i have too many things in common with x...i look like X,i wear like X and sometimes i sing the way X does.
will u ask the X to come and visit me once a while?

19/12/06 9:54 pm  
Blogger beepbeepitsme said...

RE anonymous

X is too busy finishing off the fjords to be able to visit.

5/2/07 9:18 pm  

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