As a smartness test, I am keeping my mouse right next to the laptop on my desk. The mouse is not hooked to the laptop. I am going to see how many times I try to use the mouse, forgetting that it is not connected to the laptop.

A really super smart guy I know took some time to talk with me. I usually feel intimidated when I talk to him...even though he is one of the nicest people I have ever met (niceness, another facet in this multifaceted dude...whenever he gets to talking about some experience of his, he seems more and more like ...damnnear perfect).

Anyway, we were talking, and I don't know how much dumber than him I am...or if I am that much dumber...or if I'm dumb, but improving or ....what...but it seemed like he had to struggle to respond to the things I was he had to bring himself down quite a few notches to be able to have talkies with me.

How many conversations are like that? I don't just mean ones where there are varying degrees of smarts. I mean conversations where the people are talking, each person is saying stuff, but where the speakers are saying really incompatible things, but they're just sharing a space of interaction because ...just because they want to. Why do they want to? What are their motives? Does it really matter that their conversation is not building neatly, empirically towards a greater subject? Or is the thing that matters this: that they want to want to talk to each other . . . What good will their conversation do anyway, will they solve some major problem? Or are they talking just to be talking, just to give time to each other. Even if you are not making the same points as the other or you're not making points toward the same premise or theory or hypothesis or whatever...even if the things you say don't exactly hit on the point that the other is making, they are hearing what you are saying, and taking it in, and you are hearing what they are saying and taking it out of respect or caring or because they feel for each other enough respect or something just to let em have their turn to talk so you can listen. Maybe if you're not speaking precisely to each other's points, but each speaker is going further out from the point the other is making - maybe you cover a broader area! Maybe the looser the talk, the more ground you cover, the longer strides you make.


laura b. said...

I get EXACTLY what you are saying, because that is how my conversations with one of my sons go. He's a deep, philosophical thinker. Smart. So when we talk...he mostly talks and I try to give that kind of feedback that affirms you are hearing and understanding...but it seems like I've missed it a lot of the time...but he takes in what I way and builds on it. I think you're right; that it is about wanting to build something even if it is never going to be totally cohesive.

PS - I bet, like, Einstein would use that mouse sometimes and he was smart!

Bobby said...

I was worried that this wouldn't make any sense to anybody.

JD-Maybe said...

people are planning their next statement the whole time you are talking. i.e. not listening