Sunday, December 26, 2004

Momus and Aristotle: 一期一会 

Momus and Aristotle run into each other on the Yamanote Line platform in Meguro one day. Momus, an internet-based pop-Renaissance man and progenitor of numerous meme bastards (yours truly included), is just back from a leisurely stroll along the Meguro River and is waiting to take a 内回り over to Harajuku where he'll bask in the fashions of juvenile delinquents. Socrates, founder of the sciences of Biology and Logic, has been checking out the Meguro Parasite Museum and is waiting to take a 外回り around to the 下町, where he's planning on engaging in some "hot sento action" (his words, not mine). Alas and alack, hanks to the perpetuitious punctiliousness of the transit system in Japan, the odd couple have but a few fleeting moments to exchange a historic word or two.

Socrates: Salutations!

Momus: [trying not to ogle a way-too-loose toga] Hi.
Aristotle: You would no doubt be Momus!
Momus: Yes. And you are...
Aristotle: I am none other than the the son of Nichomachus.
Momus: As I was about to say!
Aristotle: I'm really into your blog.
Momus: Thanks. I've read a few of your things as well.
Aristotle: Hanging out in Meguro today, are we?
Momus: I just walked down the river from Nakame.
Aristotle: Oh, I just ADORE Nakame. The cherry trees are splended when in bloom.
Momus: I couldn't agree with you more!
Aristotle: [after a brief pause] Ahem. Well, it looks like your train is coming soon.
Momus: I'm afraid it is. I would have so loved to tarry with you here.
Aristotle: As would I, as would I.
Momus: Have you got an email address?
Aristotle: I'm on Mixi.
Momus: Small world! Me too.
Aristotle: I know this is a bit of a non sequitur, but...
Momus: No, no. By all means.

ANNOUNCEMENT: [The soothing, high-pitched tone of a Japanese woman's voice may be heard coming from the loudspeakers on the platform] まもなく、二番線に新宿、池袋方面...

Aristotle: Well, frankly speaking, I really wish you'd tone down the anti-Platonic tenor of your blog.
Momus: [his feathers slightly ruffled] Really!?
Aristotle: Um-hum. I mean, sure...I've had MY little falling outs with Plato over the years and all, but you and I both know that Plato never intended for his timeless contemplations on Metaphysics, which were just honest inquiries in the realm of thought at the time, to be grossly misappropriated 1000 years later by the Fathers of the Church and poorly translated into Latin in order to shore up the rickety philosophical basis for monotheistic religions like Christanity.
Momus: Yeah, but they made me hate my body for years and years...
Aristotle: I know. I know. But it isn't HIS fault. Instead of lambasting him for the shortcomings of his interpreters, why not praise him for his lucidity and the honesty of his thought. After all, these are two things you seem to value in your writing, right?
Momus: ...


Aristotle: Well, I must be going.
Momus: Perhaps we'll meet again?
Aristotle: [boarding his train] Perhaps. Take care.

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