eating bits of black pepper before i noticed that, when trying to think of how to describe it, i found it extremely difficult to come up with words to explain how it tasted to me without resorting to tautology (peppery) or very general and therefore useless descriptors (spicy).

so there is a language out there, and for the moment i will pretend we are not so much a part of it as much as we are simply users of it, with words and attached to those words are meanings, and those meanings are often set in our minds by tacit agreement or context. which is to say that these symbols, already removed from their object, are even more generalized via separate definitions. the old, "what if what you think is red, i think is blue," question.

so of course i come up with warm, seedy, fresh, almost green, almost citrusy. and even though we may be able to agree on all those things (though likely not), you are still no closer to knowing what i mean. by chance we may mean the same thing for a similar experience, but that's it. so if 'citrusy' is a bit wrong for me, and it is, and it is a bit wrong for you, then we are twice as far away from each other as we are to the word/idea/description of the sensation itself. and this is black pepper.

we so rarely say what we want or what we mean. and when we do, everyone is so accustomed to it not being what we actually mean that it is taken as a prevarication or approximation or at very least a curtain with the actual 'thing' behind it. now add to that the fact we are speaking individual dialects of a language, it's no wonder things so often go awry. and yet somehow being as clear as possible is unacceptable.



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number 9.. .   .? andy andy andy, get your adverbs here

and that's what i'm trying to do