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    dots Submission Name: The humian dilemma is the human dilemma.dots

    Author: Outlaw
    Elite Ratio:    8 - 510/413/195
    Words: 1066
    Class/Type: Prose/Misc
    Total Views: 1247
    Average Vote:    No vote yet.
    Bytes: 5749

       Work in progress, still giving it a shape and a direction.. I'm not looking for writing advice, but I am curious to know people's reaction to what's already made...

    Make the font bigger!! Double Spacing Back to recent posts.

    dotsThe humian dilemma is the human dilemma.dots

         The man sat on a bench as if parched by the scene before him, by the sandy dunes that rolled left and right like waves running from land. He wasn’t a very remarkable type: average height, hazel-brown eyes, a bit of facial hair, a shape to him explicating his weathered yet embracing submissiveness. He stood a moment, and sat back down. His legs were exhausted from having walked for so long. It was also from being assailed as if without relent by the heat ubiquitous in the air circumfusing him in every which way, every which nook, exploiting any weakness as it showed itself.
         He stood another moment, and sat back down. Similar thoughts and feelings invaded his spirit; this, perhaps, was a peculiarity about the man on the bench. He seemed to comprehend causality, yet behaved in ways which often did not derive their sense from this principle. That is, he often, when reading a book for example, would reread certain pages over and over expecting the words to have changed in some way, expecting the story to deviate in some fashion unknown to him. In this way, he seemed not to keep track of time, or of the numerous amount of times he’d repeat a certain action; instead, memory made itself his measure of events, and so a weak or unclear memory meant there were gaps and lacunae of events missing.
    He stood up, one last time, and sat back down. This time he remembered clearly why his walk had been so strenuous: he’d been following a line which, occasionally, gave way to perpendicular tangents pointing to shapes. These shapes, he remembered, took on weird forms with no discernible pattern: the first pair seemed to be composed of a column with a hanging top and an ovular shape, the second pair was composed of another two columns with hanging tops, and so on. Eventually, as he sporadically checked either ones of his sides, he saw a shanty from which jutted a bench; the bench upon which he now found himself.
         This man stood to be human, in spite of the fact that before these shapes, before this walk, he remembered nothing. It is quite unthinkable to conceive him as having appeared out of thin, mind you hot, air! But as far as his unsystematic apercu of life went, he did not exist before this first point, before acknowledging the first pair of shapes. This led the man, in quite an unorthodox fashion, to question his origin, but more so, his nature. And it is in doing this that he discovered nothing about himself. Yet, because of it, he now noticed the sandy dunes that rolled left and right like waves running from land before him. In the heat of the sight, he turned – away from the heat, towards the shanty.
         There he saw a wooden shaft sodden with long dried paint, and it was an old shaft at that. There is no better abuse than time; aside, perhaps, from the free market. On it were grooves, cusp, as if an ocean of people had swam by and, of the many, a few had stopped by to bite – some places bare single marks, others, sharp marks, and a few others, whole rows of grooves. They each spoke of an individual kind of desperation, the kind you could tag, bar code, all that stuff, but together they spoke only of desperation without identity, like an animal. A few of the shallower indents must have been caused by nails, or skirmishes between the shaft and acute objects.
         The shaft held, on either side, a series of equally paint-crippled wood boards, although these only had horizontal deformations that seemed much more unified, if not outright natural. Across the boards on the left you could see the remains of a word that had been painted over, only, the man on the bench did not recognize these symbols nor did he understand the sense of the structure. And as he saw the whole of taking, upon taking a few steps back, he looked down, at his feet. There he wiggled his toes and wondered to himself how it was possible that these pieces, this flesh, what seemed exterior to him could be controlled by him. And that’s when it crossed his mind: where was he? Not so much in regards to his milieu as his himness.
         He looked before him, and there he found a shaft sodden with red paint, and it was an old shaft at that. The shaft held, on either side, a series of equally painted white wood boards; horizontal deformations seemed to protrude all over. And to the left, there, in big black characters, he saw the word PEACE. And for a moment he looked away and saw the sandy dunes that rolled left and right like waves running from land before him. Oddly enough, there seemed to be a long line traced, in black, the same black as the bizarre shapes he saw elsewhere. He began to follow this line. He looked up for a moment and saw the sandy dunes that rolled left and right like waves running from land before him. There was also a long line traced in black, same as the black on the shanty – he glanced over his shoulder, and nothing but dunes were to be seen. What was a shanty, anyhow? The idea of the structure did not even make sense. As the thought ran through his mind, one of his toes twitched. He looked down. There it was, a black line, in the sand. He looked up, and there it was, a black line in the blue sky. He tried to go towards this blueness, but to no avail. He looked back down at his feet, wiggled his toes – everything seemed to be in check, and yet, nothing. His will, so it seemed, could no longer get his flesh to move as it wanted it to. He looked ahead, and again, saw the black line in the sand, began to follow it.

    Submitted on 2010-06-01 14:35:26     Terms of Service / Copyright Rules
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    ||| Comments |||
      Positively surreal , I think I've had this dream before . Conversely I was frustrated by the fact that I couldn't discern wether he was following his path out of a sense of duty , or perhaps because of the drudgeries of redundancy , or even perhaps with a will for explorational discovery . Maybe you could clarify this in your rewrite should you attempt it . Aside from this I would say the man seems to be suffering from a severe case of shanghai shanty shellac on the shack . My prognosis , he needs a good old double dose of hovel huff on the hut . Perhaps then he wouldn't so easily forget the repose of the bench or the structure to which it was attached . The gnarly red soaked shaft or its horizontally schlieric accouterments . The final dilemma when he observes the black line in the vastness of blue sky is positively Galilean but he apparently , of personal apercu , can't follow its path and submissively stares back down at his unresponsive feet and begins again to plod along its earthbound counterpart . This was too anticlimactic for me .
    | Posted on 2010-06-21 00:00:00 | by monad | [ Reply to This ]
      p.s. are you familiar at all with alzheimer's disease? This reminded me of that, the man made me think of someone with alzheimer's.
    | Posted on 2010-06-18 00:00:00 | by Lady of Shalott | [ Reply to This ]
      So I'm up at this ungodly hour and methinks I should wander over here and read this delightfully titled piece that I clicked on awhile ago and like so many (and quite possibly hypocritical) I saw it was prose and decided to hold off.

    So I must admit my knowledge of Hume is via Kant via my poorly philosophized brain. I have a feeling that at some point, maybe quickly, I will stop making sense and you will have to shoot me like a dog that can't be saved. And the children will cry, but that's okay...a new puppy will fix everything...

    anyway. that was sick, moving on...

    From my understanding much of Kant's theory takes residence in visual perception as visual perception gives people their conscious visual experience of the world, and allows them to see objects in the colorful context of the scenes in which they are embedded with seemingly very little cognitive effort. Essentially, "knowing" them. We can take in the objects of a room (a couch, a chair, a coffee table, without thinking, "that is a couch, that is a chair, that is a coffee table") and conclude what type of room it is (a living room) and even what it is meant for (a common space for entertaining or relaxing, etc).

    This is what I think some refer to as "unconscious inference"?

    Gaining this knowledge, even simple knowledge such as this, helps us determine how to act or respond. We complete this by adding ourselves to the equation (e.g., we may act quite differently in our own living room than someone else's or if we were in a bedroom instead of a living room). Another example would be a photograph in a newspaper; the brain, through visual perception, interprets the photograph as a smooth, clear image. Yet, a closer look shows that the photograph is actually a series of tiny dots of ink.

    [Kant's theory surmised that items are ordered by the process of synthesis, which he characterized as "the act of putting different representations together, and grasping what is manifold in them in one cognition" or something like that (I might be misquoting)]

    To summarize: Visual perception and unconscious inference allow us to interpret and relate various pieces of information into conclusive wholes and then react accordingly (insert cultural and social influences as well) just by coming into contacting with them and using previous contacts to form our judgements. Without this we would not possess the sense of self that what have, let alone be able to understand or produce what the [censored] I'm talking about right now.

    To summarize again: semantics: the form of a particular man gives us an idea of that man, we then give this idea a word and then relate back to it when we see a similar man. A Canadian is a Canadian is a Canadian (that was for your benefit) because y'all say "eh".

    Onward...and back to the photo example: what happens then if we just look at the tiny dots of ink?

    We lose sense of the picture. We see the dots.

    This is what I feel like your story is about. As though there has been a glitch in the process. What if we collected all this bits of information but were not able to pull them together into one cognition, we were not able to understand yet we still felt the urge to react. Therefore our reaction was affected, stalled, possibly repeated for better luck understanding, inferring next go around. Here you seem to be toiling with causation and induction, problem thereof, at various points supporting and arguing Hume in a very demonstrative fashion -- using the man and his seeming lack of completion and interesting sight patterns to present us with a human version of Humian's dilema.

    And now I'm losing sight, as I do with philosophy. I'm pretty sure I'm fucking over Kant and Hume and Schopenwhatsitname.

    The end trails off and leaves me lost. Why couldn't he go toward the blueness? I understand the black line as some metaphor for the man who appears based in routine of certain motions, that these motions have been done before and a-to-b must be done again, but why can't he deviate? If we lose our will, what becomes of us?

    This is a very half-assed response.

    I'm going to bed.



    p.s. On a literary note, I found this very interesting in style and well written. I think that the issue the reader will have is just reading without reading into it (as in, the reader will automatically try to infer what it is you're saying when it is best to just read without trying to relate.)

    | Posted on 2010-06-18 00:00:00 | by Lady of Shalott | [ Reply to This ]
      Interesting piece. It could be a metaphor for many things, but I choose to see it as a metaphor for life. We trudge on through this wasteland, always going, always moving, as if we're following something. But most never know what that something is. So, they get lost, forgetting who they were, what they're doing, and why they were doing it. They fall down and are ready to give up when suddenly they have a flash; a memory of themselves. They are able to look around and see where they are. They try to get up, to keep going, but the heat in this wasteland saps them of their strength. All they want now is peace. A respite from all this drudgery. And when they lift their eyes, they see it. Peace, beautiful peace. And look! A path! A line marking the way! But they are unable to follow. And so, they lift themselves up and begin again. Hoping one day to be able to follow that black line.

    On a side note, I did like the part about rereading pages in a book. I too reread pages, but I don't expect the story to change. Instead I let my imagination play out different possibilities. What if the characters did this, what if they did that. This was a stupid part, they should've done this. Then they could've... You get the point. Anyway, like I said, interesting. I may not not have reached the conclusions that you wanted, but I reached the conclusions that I wanted. And that's what poetry is all about, reaching your own conclusions. Perhaps I will come across your page again sometime and reach some more.

    The Bird
    | Posted on 2010-06-16 00:00:00 | by Swimming Bird | [ Reply to This ]
      There were a few spelling errors here or there but overall the piece was alright. Maybe its just me and my slowness but the piece just confused me. I feel uneasy when you don't know where a person came from, where he is going, or even who he is. And whats with all the black lines??

    Overall it was a bit shaky and didn't really grab my interest at all except for the one bit about the word PEACE, all I saw in the rest of it was black lines, shanties, and shapes, no offense though, once again I am just slow to some things.

    The whole peace thing you could really build off of though, are you trying to make a short story or a longer write? Is it all empty and semimeaningless because of the peace? Because there is nothing really left when its only peace? Thats an interesting concept so I would say if you are trying to make a short story you could really work off of that and if you are trying to make something longer you really have to grab the reader's attention more. I mean the whole rereading pages for a complete memory bit I thought was really cool as well but it was kind of dropped towards the end. Stick with it, describe how he sees the world tied more into his personality, perception is a powerful thing.

    Anyway keep it up,
    | Posted on 2010-06-15 00:00:00 | by blankscreen | [ Reply to This ]

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