Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Moral Laws

Hey kids - I'm swamped at work and I'm struggling through yet another bout of sinus hell so forgive the lack of new stuff up here. It feels alternately like my brain is melting out my nose or else like there are 9 inch nails shoved up my nostrils (and not of the Trent Reznor variety. More like the Mr. Mike bit about Tony Orlando and Dawn shoving knitting needles into their eyes). (or Ed Sullivan) (shoving needles into his own eyes, not into the eyes of Tony Orlando and Dawn.) (btdub, for all things Mr. Mike, read "MR. MIKE: The Life and Work of Michael O'Donoghue, The Man Who Made Comedy Dangerous" by my e-friend, Dennis Perrin).

So just a quick thought for everyone: I was thinking about moral law and searching for definite black and white instances of one way of life triumphing over another, and here's what I came up with:
If there are two people living together, let's say in an Odd Couple type of way, and one is neat and one is messy, then the neat person is always in the right. As in, the messy person is always wrong and must both acknowledge his wrongness and defer to the neat person by attempting to be clean. For example, let's say in one's household, the spices are alphabetized on the rack. And Messy Guy always leaves the salt on the counter -- not back on the rack, between Sage and Savory. And the Neat Guy totally has the moral right to say, "Messy Guy, you are wrong. You know Salt belongs on the spice rack in betwixt Sage and Savory and yet you continuously leave it out on the counter. Or you leave your magazines on the coffee table when you know they belong in the magazine rack. Or worse, you didn't take off your shoes when you walked in the door and you left messy tracks all through the house and that is wrong, wrong, wrong." And, truly, the Messy Person is wrong and the Neat Person is right, because the Messy person ought to know that just he because he is messy, Neatness is the righteous ruler of the land and the Messy Person must curb his or her messy tendencies in deference to the reigning morality of cleanliness being next to godliness.

I can't think of any other Ultimate Binary Moral Relativity constructs such as this. Young doesn't always defer to Old, nor vice versa. Short doesn't defer morally to Tall, nor vice versa. Neither does Fat to Thin, Conservative to Liberal, Faith-based to Empirical, nor Coke to Pepsi. It just seems that Neat is always right and Messy is always wrong, and, as a lifelong messy person, this dichotomy fascinates me.

Note: I'm not messy like pizza boxes on the floor, I'm just messy in a I-know-where-everything-is-right-now although-to-you-it-looks-like-a-tornado-hit-my-room/office/desk/cubby. I don't put things away in the physical world because I put them away in my brain, like, duh.

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