Background: Sohail tried to contradict an article of mine on comp.lang.lisp in which I compared Arc unfavorably to Common Lisp with some code proving CL was almost as good as Arc. Think about that for a second. I ripped him a new one for poor reading comprehension and guessed correctly (he confirmed) that his understanding was blinded by another mistake, misconstruing my impatience with Arc's detractors as meaning somehow a preference of Arc over CL.
Great Lisp-NYC chug-a-lug last night. But... everyone who came up to me to talk about Arc said, "So you like Arc, eh?" Every last one. And most of those who did are smarter than I.
Each time I responded, "No, I never said that. I just rag on people for ragging on Arc without trying it."
It gets worse. Half the people responded they were in fact aware that I had merely ragged on naysayers for their unreasoned opining. And they still thought I liked Arc.
Meanwhile over on Reddit someone wants to know if I am gay because I whined publicly about Turing being persecuted for being gay. Sure and I am also black, Comanche, Jewish, Palestinian, Mexican, an Iraqi civilian, and I died in the plane that hit the South Tower of the WTC.
We all know everyone sees the world differently. What I realized last night is that the differences go beyond the differences in the observers themselves, their different tastes, upbringings, cultures, and DNA. People just plain get things wrong.
We get things wrong all the time. As a matter of course. Our world views form a scatter plot around the bullseye of reality.
Not because of lack of intellect or through lack of attention, though those explain the worst misses. Just because the brain registers new information using a sloppy indexing scheme that settles for bad matches because they are the closest matches and because those matches are affected by what we had for lunch.
We need a new song. Maybe "I say potato, you say Hunh? More day-glo?".
One of my favorite lines to deliver upon completing a task: "That's close enough for government work." I think the brain's ethic is "That's close enough for this bozo carrying me around."
Super. Billions of us walking around trying to deal with each other while each of us is working from more or less faulty copies of reality. Explains a lot.
I realize now I never bought having conflict and injustice explained as the natural consequence of different tastes and life experiences. Nope. We are all just more or less wrong about more or less everything, each of us in different ways, and so no, Rodney, we can never just get along. We will always be in conflict because we will never agree because we are all carrying around different broken realities and broken realities will clash more violently than realities varying merely by taste.
Why do I find this so comforting?