Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Mr. Green and Christoff: Sunday Conversations, Part I

Mr. Green is six feet tall, thin, and clean-shaven. He shaves Sunday morning after an hour of drums, before he calls Christoff. They don’t need it. They are smooth. Mr. Green doesn’t have hair, except on the top of his head. Christoff has interesting things to do all the time. Mr. Green met Christoff at the butcher when he was still 13.5, a mere two weeks after he became Mr. Green. Christoff inquired about barbecue sauce recipes. Mr. Green bought pork shoulder. Today is Sunday, February 21st. Mr. Green is 14.2. Christoff is old. We join their conversation, as always, when it is not dull, and will leave if and when it becomes such.

Christoff: So you’ve read a lot of science fiction. Do you know its history?

Mr. Green: I don’t know. I’ve never thought about it. So I guess I don’t.

Christoff: Just because you’ve never thought about something doesn’t mean you don’t know it. In science fiction, the creatures, big eyes, tentacles, the bizarro alien look, didn’t exist until recently. You know when it surfaced? After we explored the depths of the ocean.

Mr. Green: How could it be possible to know things without thinking them? Can you breathe without lungs? Can you pee without your bladder?

Christoff: Yes, there are machines. And knowing something is different.

Mr. Green: Like if you have an idea or an invention, I suppose there is a point in time when that idea doesn’t exist. And then it does. In between there, are you saying there is a moment when your mind knows your idea before you think it?

Christoff: I would argue you knew it all along, but you just didn’t realize it. And I would cite as my example the history of science fiction, which illustrates how our minds are not capable of the boundless imagination we enjoy convincing ourselves we posses, but, rather, we are constrained by our very limited experiences.

Mr. Green: And how would you explain Pokemon? What in nature looks like Pokemon?

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