Showing posts with label entropy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label entropy. Show all posts

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Adventures in Logophilia Day 8: Entropy (Jillian)

Today's word is...

Entropy (noun) is a degree of disorder in a system; an ultimate state of inert uniformity.

So... it is fairies, then? 

Michelle sent me a lovely card once with a quote from A. A. Milne, which has followed me around ever since.  He says, "One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries." This quote was accompanied by an illustration of an 18th century gentleman in an untidy office reading a book with a cup of tea and smiling in contentment. 

It was once explained to me that entropy is what happens when neglect to pick up your room.  I don't know if this was an elementary school science-y thing or what, but all I know is that I cannot come into my bedroom these days and attribute the clutter of neglect to anything but the entropy fairies.  This is how shoes wind up under the bed.  They're taken off and kicked aside.  Papers aren't tidied from a morning of blogging.  Over here is a plate that once held my breakfast.  Under this thing is a copy of Melville's "Bartleby the Scrivener" that I'd printed out 1 August, forgotten since then.  It's like finding a favorite shirt that you've wanted to wear for weeks deep under layers of laundry; it emerges from the wash in a fanfare. 

I think we whimsy hunters are like that, too, when we think about a nugget of knowledge and seek to find out more about it.  And the internet with its twitterings (I like that word better than tweets, by the way, I'm not just being silly), pinterest-ventures and facebookings, is Entropy itself.  You can find anything in that gargatuan sphere!  Anything!  From a tutorial on how to bind your own journals to timelines of the First World War to fan chat rooms for Doctor Who where fans hang out their windows and snap pictures of a Tardis that has magically appeared for filming in the neighborhood.  As intimidated as I am sometimes by the vastness of the internet and my comparative smallness, I know in general it can be a good thing. There are corners on the web to look in and poke about and find little seeds that will eventually grow to fill the garden beds of a story.

Happy hunting!


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