Monday, October 22, 2012
Four Page Sentence
A Tweet permits no more than one hundred and forty characters. And here, included in the definition of "character" is a tap on the space bar or any of those keys that are not letters. On the one side it probably prevents rambling, it offers a chance to concentrate thought, and I guess it's a minimalism, which has also been called ABC Art, sound bite, bumper sticker and that range of carelessness that passes for insight in minds dominated by terror of nuance, or fear of answerless-ness, or nervousness around learning and therefore powered almost completely by tribal allegiance. And in terms of my own judgment of Twitter, better perhaps to simply say, I am glad neither of the Wittgenstein's or Russell are alive to see what jolly good fun it is.
All the same, in my own explorations of idea through language, I have recently been much influenced by what a wise man once called "the four page sentence." And here, included in so lengthy a definition of long-windedness, is the wide range of facial and eye movements offered by the word 'yawn' when the word 'yawn' is not used to strictly mean an aspect of involuntary pandiculation. Of course, "long-windedness," is also what both the Wittgenstein's and Russell were trying to reduce in their attempt to define language as containing a greater usefulness. And interestingly enough, Noam Chomsky averages a couple of Tweets a day. But in the end language is a perception. Like hearing, eyesight and touch. Which naturally is a point of view many find too disabling to agree with.