MAY 18, 2009 9:10AM

I Wasn’t Doing the Command “Please”

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Michael: Actually, Kilgore Trout is perfect because he’s meta, too.

Melissa: Yeah, remember when I was saying how cool it would be if a new book by Kilgore Trout came out now?

Michael: That’s not what you said before.

Melissa: I’m talking about a few months ago.

Michael: Oh.

Melissa: That would be such a Vonnegut thing to do.

Michael: Agreed.

     And so it goes.

     Okay, now talk about what our topic is this time.

Melissa: Kilgore Trout!

Michael: Oh yeah!


     Don’t talk about Kilgore Trout!

     Just talk about talking about writing about Kilgore Trout.

Melissa: That’s what we’re doing right now!

Michael: Oh good!

     Okay, let’s keep going.

Melissa: At a certain point, you realize there’s not much to say when you’re talking about talking about writing about something.

Michael: Then we’ve written about a lot of nothing?

Melissa: What is nothing, anyway?

Michael: “What is nothing, anyway?”

     The absence of something.

Melissa: But then can it be a thing, can it be a what?

     I mean, if it’s no thing, then I shouldn’t be able to say, “What is it?”

Michael: What are we talking about?

Melissa: Nothing!

(very long pause)

Michael: We can’t sit here forever not writing about talking about nothing.

     Oh yeah! We’re not supposed to be talking about nothing! So we’re okay.

Melissa: Maybe nothing is our new subject.

     In which case, it’s something.

Michael: Right, the subject of the post.

Melissa: So the subject of this post is nothing.

Michael: Which is something.

Melissa: Is that creation ex nihilo?

Michael: No, because it springs from our minds.

Melissa: But we’re creating something from nothing.

Michael: It is a product of our minds.

Melissa: I mean the literal “nothing” that is our subject.

Michael: That “nothing” that you’re referring to is something.

     Not because it was true nothingness become something, but some text written in an editor.

     A product of our mind.

Melissa: Yes, but that text signifies something. Nothing.

Michael: Abandon all hope, ye who enter the meta-universe.


     When did the subject suddenly shift from Kilgore Trout to “nothing”? I don’t remember that happening.

Melissa: Just scroll up and you’ll see.

Michael: I don’t wanna do that. I don’t wanna do that.

     Put that, please.

     Take away that comma.

Melissa: But if I take away the comma, that will mean the literal “please,” instead of the command “please”.

Michael: “The command ‘please’”?

Melissa: Yes.

Michael: I wasn’t doing the command “please.”

Melissa: You mean you literally wanted me to insert a “please” somewhere?


Michael: Is that what that would mean?

Melissa: Yes.

Michael: Okay, then that’s not right.

Melissa: That’s what I was saying!

(very long pause)

Michael: You know what I’m trying to resist saying, don’t you?

     It’s just hanging there, on the end.

Melissa: Don’t say it.

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