I found this in my documents folder just now. It feels relevant somehow to things I want to move toward making.
“My mind then wandered. I thought of this: I thought of how every day each of us experiences a few little moments that have just a bit more resonance than other moments—we hear a word that sticks in our mind—or maybe we have a small experience that pulls us out of ourselves, if only briefly—we share a hotel elevator with a bride in her veils, say, or a stranger gives us a piece of bread to feed to the mallard ducks in the lagoon; a small child starts a conversation with us in a Dairy Queen—or we have an episode like the one I had with the M&M cars back at the Husky station.
And if we were to collect these small moments in a notebook and save them over a period of months we would see certain trends emerge from our collection—certain voices would emerge that have been trying to speak through us. We would realize that we have been having another life altogether; one we didn’t even know was going on inside us. And maybe this other life is more important than the one we think of as being real—this clunky day-to-day world of furniture and noise and metal. So just maybe it is these small silent moments which are the true story-making events of our lives.”
Here’s the list of moments I’ve kept waffling on about in my essay and presentations. I use the word moment because I think the best way of looking at this history is to break it down in to a few snapshot moments. I don’t like the word moments that much but can’t think of anything better. I’m not saying these will defnitely be the ones I’ll use, but they’re what I’m looking at for the moment.
Here are a few points that should illustrate most of where my mind is with this…
1 – I think the words history, word and all are perhaps not quite equally important parts of my title but the first two shouldn’t be forgotten. I’d chosen them before I chose the word all, after all. I sometimes feel like I’m making a project about absolutely everything. I’m not. It’s about the history of a word. I want to look at the word’s use and misuse, with a view to examining language in the process. A significant part of this is looking at the images and ideas that flood into people’s minds when they hear the word. Which leads me on to part two of this post.