Wednesday, December 13, 2023



My Chinese office-mate, back at Informix, when I asked her for a Chinese surname, gave me this: fei4, "fey" with a falling tone. It is a surname, and it sounds roughly like the first syllable of "Favier." It is also a word-element meaning "squander." It seemed uncannily appropriate.

The sense that I am squandering is heavy on me.

Immediately problematic to put it that way -- as wasting time: it is not possible to waste time. We all of us have all the time there is. To speak of "wasting time" is to take a ridiculous view, in which I possess a dwindling collection of packets of time that I can deal out to various enterprises. That is not what time is like, and only a rigorously trained stupidity can take it to be like that.

No, the problem is nothing like an improper allocation of time-resources. The problem is that I am facing into a corner, and wondering why the world is so small. The solution is not to try to push the walls out. The solution is to turn around.

The solution is to turn around.

I am old and tired and worried, but that's only to be expected of someone who stands in a corner gazing at the walls all day. What else would I be?