Notes from the Cell, Pt. II

Dear Diary,

What are things? Or, more specifically, to what extent must something change before it becomes something else, something new, something unique? Persistence of vision gives us the illusion that things are static–all the shrieking in the world won’t magically turn a pair of reinforced tri-hinged handcuffs into an insubstantial cloud of stochastic pixels. That’s what I used to tell my house guests time and time again, ironically. And, now, we can rely on the three walls and iron bars still being there in the morning, unchanged, for the next 15 years (or ten for good behavior).

But change is everywhere. A bone broken is a fracture–but where was the fracture before I heard what you said about me? Are your bones then nothing more than a collection of potential fractures? It makes me think: maybe things can only become other things when we have names for them. Like a fallen tree part becomes a “stick.” Or stony particulate becomes “dirt.” Or you walking around without my fist buried in your face yet are a “target.” Without a unique appellation, an object can never rise above the level of being a piece of something else. It will never be something more. Something greater.

What’s interesting is when things become other things without changing. Sometimes velocity alone is all that’s required to make one thing another thing. A rock is a rock, but hurl it four thousand miles an hour and suddenly it’s a meteor. And myself, when I’m sitting in church, inert, I’m an anonymous part of the crowd. But three minutes later when I’m barrelling through that crowd toward you for looking at my girl the wrong way I become both your worst nightmare and the means by which your future therapist enjoys her new Mercedes. And let us not forget that just about anything–including dentures–can become a blunt weapon, if one has both the creativity and the desire.

We live in a world of apparent solids, but in reality things are, right down to their molecules, in a state of constant flux, their forms malleable, their definitions transient. Opportunities abound to realize new things which have no precedent: The crawlspace behind the shower vent is a gorntu. The cellmate who rats me out is a fyndilliper. And my crushed spirit becomes my… nuchiato blennthining. And perhaps this diary is no longer a diary at all, as it changes anew with each word writ.

Speaking of which, I need cut this entry short as I’ve run out of toilet paper and my finger is just about bled dry.

2 thoughts on “Notes from the Cell, Pt. II

  1. External physical objects are composed of a relatively static set of molecules (in the short term – a year or so.) You, on the other hand, are composed of a completely new set of cells every couple of months. You are not who you were. Who are you?

  2. Yeah, I got the same question on my LS performance review – some excuse for not giving someone a raise, eh? “You didn’t earn it, because you’re not the one who did the work, TECHNICALLY.” Technically, I wonder how the same question would sound as they were retrieving their teeth from the floor…