When I say David Ker’s Christ, you think one thing. When I say David Ker’s spin, you think another. What if you were to think of these things as the same thing?
It’s possible, you say. And you, an English reader and speaker might even tell me you’re a native English speaker. Maybe you’re really not a native speaker but you consider yourself fluent enough, more proficient than most others who call themselves native speakers. And your English is natural.
Fine, I grant you. But can’t we talk about David, I ask.
David Rosenberg or David Ker, you pretend to ask. I laugh. Ker of course, I say, knowing that you’ve read my post where I compare Ker’s Christ with Rosenberg’s Messiah.
You’re now suspicious that I’m talking about different things as the same and sometimes the same things as different. But I’m more than suspicious. It’s not that I’m more than suspicious of you in some sort of postmodern way. It’s that I have more than a suspicion that you’re using language very very powerfully because that’s the way homosapiens use language.
I tend to like Kenneth Pike’s theory on language, I’m telling you. Okay, we can call it Tagmemics if we have to. But I’d rather call it just about anything else. It’s that thing Juliet says to Romeo about a name, about a rose smelling and it smelling just as sweet. Yes, I know. A rose doesn’t smell, a person does. That’s really my point, or Pike’s rather. People have agency with language. And, let’s just agree, it wasn’t Juliet but William Shakespeare who had the agency here, had the power. Right, absolutely correct, some readers and researchers think that Mary Sidney Hebert, Countess of Pembroke, actually was Shakespeare, or at least was the writer of Romeo and Juliet and all of the plays and sonnets and such that make up the body of Shakespeare’s works. So maybe she’s the one who started this whole thing about names and roses and sameness and such. Pike’s point is that you have power, and so do I. If we use Aristotle’s principles of logic, then we can conclude by a syllogism that David Ker has the power.
Oh, right, you say; David Ker is the subject of your post. David Ker’s Spin, I remind you. Yes, you agree.
Is David’s Spin his Christ? In other words, are you saying that what he says about Christ is a spin on something, a spin of some kind? What does spin mean to you? I ask to you. And you reply: spin means lots of things; it’s why I’m asking you. So I ask rhetorically, rather flippantly, we’re sounding like Socrates and one of his disciples with all of our back and forth questions, aren’t we. Yeah, you say, correcting, but Socrates didn’t use English tag questions, did he? Nor did he really ask the questions, did he? I mean, think about it, you insist; we get everything that Socrates said through his disciple Plato. So whatever you think of Socrates is either Plato parroting or Plato making stuff up. Oh, I said. Then scratching my head I ask: Maybe Plato was idealizing Socrates. The thought’s too heavy, it seems, for both of us. So before you can reply, I say as if I’m adding a follow up thought:
I was hoping you’d think of Spin in different ways. But not in every way either. In other words, you allow the word to have a core meaning, a range of meanings, and meanings in relation to other things. It’s Pike’s or Einstein’s Particle, Wave, and/ or Field. But this isn’t ProtoType theory, is it? you ask. I don’t think so, I agree. ProtoType theory is more like our friend Wayne Leman’s ideal Natural English theory. It assumes some sort of regularized commonality for everyone; it’s the ideal of everyone’s normal English. Pike and Einstein, instead, give the individual and the community lots of power to decide stuff about their language; so just as soon Leman tells us what natural English really is, it’s changed, or in Pike’s view, can be changed. Like Heraclitus’s river, you say. Sorta, I say.
So, what’re you sayin about Ker’s Spin, you ask me again. I’m so glad you asked, I say smiling. He’s had his blog he’s named Lingamish closed off to us readers. And then you interrupt: he’s not closed off if you have his posts via Google Reader or someother RSS feed; and he’s been real active on Facebook, doing cool techno stuff in his community. Ah, I say, to be his friend. And, as if trying to one up you, I add: Did you know he once blogged at one of my blogs? Okay, it was my only blog then, and he posted actually more than once. Like what, you ask. He’s not a feminist is he? Hardly, I agree. At least that’s what he says he’s not, although he sure hates some forms of sexism and the trafficking of women. But, right, his rhetoric is something else. I could give you links to some of his posts; quasi-anti-feminist posts, I add. Once I tried to get him to tell us who his teachers were, who’d influenced him. You’d thought I was trying to get him to publicly confess an association with a terrorist group or something. Reluctantly, he spun it this way, as if he were a schoolboy antifeminist with the hot’s, nonetheless, for his teacher; he named his rose-sweet post, Hot For Teacher.
Is that what you mean by David Ker’s Spin, you ask. It’s not what I thought I meant, I confess. But, now that you mention it….
Well, what did you Think you meant, you say. And I hear the slight irritation in your question this time.
Well, David calls himself Lingamish, or at least he calls his blog that, and he calls himself or his blog the Hippo, or at least he brands his blogging with this Mozambiquean statuette or colorful pottery art of a hippopotamus. And now when you click on the link to his blog or type lingamish.com into your browser address bar, then all you get is this:
You stare a moment and finally say, Is David a Tagmemicist? What!? I say back at you with as much incredulity in my intonation and stress as I can muster. Have you been listening? And, as if on cue, you say you know where you’ve seen this before. Doug Chaplin, the blogger who is the meta-Catholic, once posted this exact thing on his blog, asking us if we were left brained or right brained depending on whether we see the girl spinning right or left. (I start to say that Doug is no longer metaCatholic but Clayboy wondering if I should sound like I’m on a first name basis with him which I’m not, but then you interrupt). See, you show me:
And now I’m staring, wondering if I should say something about how this is probably art created by a man, some guy named Nobuyuki or something, and how most art that’s displayed in museums is by men, and even when women produce good art they get paid a fraction of what their male counterparts make. And I want to prove that all somehow by pointing out how the artist here has clearly, once more, taken the woman’s clothes off for all the world to see, or at least mainly for all the men and boys to gawk at. I want to say that, but I’m also thinking that’s nothing that you meant, at least not at the moment. And I’m grateful that you’ve talked with me so long anyway. Talked about so much. So we both look at both the spinning lingamish hippo and the spinning lady, when you bring up how some have disputed that this is really a right brain / left brain tendency test at all. In other words, it’s not, you say. And then we look at this way to look at it both ways, or rather at it either way:
Where’d you get that, I ask, knowing we’d best give credit where it’s due. Here, you say: http://www.qianqin.de/2007/10/15/clockwise-or-counterclockwise/. Do you read German, I ask but then see that the .de (or, dot Deutschland) domain has nothing to do with it. Ne, you quip, knowing that in Germany that means, Nope, or Not on your life, or some other such slang. We talk about how Germany will do today, playing for the third place spot in the World Cup 2010 in South Africa.
Then, we remember that David Ker is there. Not in South Africa per se, but close enough.
You say: Now that he’s got the Diskies out the door, I’m looking forward to reading David’s blogging. Lingamish, arise! I say: I have no idea what you just said but am glad to know you’re on a first name basis with Ker. I think you must know something, afraid to ask what a Disky is. (There’s insider language here I’m not privy to.) So I just say: Me too!