Re: virus: Re:PCR Three Axioms

Brett Lane Robertson (
Mon, 29 Sep 1997 12:36:04 -0500

You said earlier that riddles survive to resolve their negation,
>but jokes do not. What do you mean by that?

>--David R.

Jokes use paradox, irony, and other techniques which we understand to be
self negating. If it contains this type of resolution then it is, in common
usage, a joke. A riddle uses these same techniques but, nonetheless, asks
for an answer. If it were a joke, there would be no answer. *Something* in
a riddle survives the tautology which can be spoken about--which demands a
resolution (the resolution is not within the statement).

I want to say that a riddle is like a command (the way I defined
"command"...a command is a statement with an implied question). The command
"Go to your room" does not refer to any available information (so has an
implied question): Go to your room may be resolved with the possibilities
"He went--did not go--to his room--the garage, the park, etc." These
possibilities externalize the's resolution will be a physical
phenomenon (at least physical in the sense that the same actor which
proposed the statement will not use the same sense to resolve it..the 'I'
which made the statement will not be the 'I' which finishes it--and here, at
least, is an infinite uncertainty which must survive and which cannot be
resolved...the distance between self-same and self-other).

A riddle is therefore a phenomenology. The action of the statement is in
the form of " I --> You". The resolution will be in the form of "It" ("I"
asked "you" and "it" happened). Being an "it", a phenomenon, the answer to
a riddle "survives". But the answer to the riddle is not the riddle. The
riddle is all three components--I, You, and It. Does the fact that one part
of the equation is a physical manifestation make the entire process one
which survives? If this contingency is inherent within the original then I
would say, yes.

A riddle must create a physical manifestation (for it to be a riddle it must
have an answer) and thus it survives it's paradoxical nature.


Rabble Sonnet Retort
Real Programmers don't write in PL/I. PL/I is for
programmers who can't decide whether to write in COBOL or