10.26.2005

hypothesis confirmed!

i don't know how i feel about empiricism, but this is pretty interesting anyway:

think back to my last post, bodily function poems. Last night, not two days after that post was written, I went to the restroom in New Dorm, and lo and behold, underneath the "if you sprinkle when you tinkle..." sign (which is printed in a childish, light-blue font), was a very serious looking black and white sign that read:
Please be considerate and keep the bathroom, shower, sink area clean.

Clean up messes that you are responsible for - whether it be toilet paper or bodily fluids.

I can't tell you how proud i was.

In this sign, we are addressed as responsible adults, and as such, we no longer "tinkle," but instead, "cause messes," which may or may not involve "bodily fluids."

There is fine print on the sign directing "you" to contact "facilities management" or "C.A.s" "if the toilets are clogged" or "for further complaints or information."

Perhaps it has become clear to the writers of the signs that we are no longer hapless children who inadvertently "tinkle" and forget to clean up after ourselves. Maybe we are finally to be held responsible for repeated infractions.

and the sign is much more authoritorian in another way: there is a threat of being inconsiderate if we don't follow the sign. in an anonymous situation, these methods: gentle, humorous suggestion, and appeals to responsibility and consideration might be the only course of action. at least, i can't see a middle ground. we would never rhyme about "bodily fluids" or write prose about "poo".

scott tells me the new sign also hangs in the men's restroom, where it will likely be peed on.

2 comments:

Seb (scientifically) said...

I wasn't going to say this, but now I can't resist.

"i don't know how i feel about empiricism, but..."

wtf, mate?

Cristi said...

we actually just read some Quine in philosophy of language (seb, i know you know all about confirmation holism), but for those of you who aren't familiar with Quine, he's awesome.

but he kinda... sorta... rejects a lot of things that science and philosophy hold dear. also, i've been doing a lot of reading on 'vagueness', which i think is great evidence of the flimsiness of a lot of concepts we hold coherent. maybe i should just write a post on this...

but, for the most part, it was a joke. i'm not totally sure how to even use the word 'empiricism', and the little study i did was hardly very scientific. maybe you can shed some light on this term i attack wihout really knowing why.

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