A co-worker recently turned me on to a website featuring a collection of some well-known -- and some not so well-known -- theories. Such bits of information and philosophy have always been of interest to me. Now, I'll say right up front that I have never considered myself a philosopher, nor am I even more philosophical than, say, your average rodeo clown - however, I would assert that I smell really good most of the time.
As a writer, one theory I find of great interest is the Infinite-Monkey Theorem, which states at its most basic level that, "If you put an infinite number of monkeys at typewriters for an infinite amount of time, eventually one of them will bash out the script for Hamlet."
Of course, critics of the theory say that you wouldn't necessarily need an infinite number of monkeys AND an infinite amount of time. Theoretically, ONE monkey, given an infinite amount of time, would eventually hit the right random keystrokes to write Hamlet. He might even accidentally type out the June 1987 Playmate of the Month's turn-ons, too - it would just take longer. Meanwhile, another spin I discovered is that an infinite number of monkeys randomly typing for an infinite amount of time, theoretically speaking, immediately begin typing out ALL possible texts.
Yet another spin-off of the Infinite-Monkey Theorem is the Finite-Monkey Theorem, which asserts that, "If you have a finite number of monkeys in a room with a finite number of typewriters, after a finite amount of time, the room will smell awful and you'll have a lot of pieces of paper that look like this:
My point is this: Why in the name of all that is pointless do people spend time coming up with this stuff? I know, I know. I am the writer of one of the most pointless exercises in the history of pseudo-journalism. Still ...
Did you know that Murphy's Law does NOT state that, "Whatever can go wrong, will"? Murphy's Law actually states, "If there are two or more ways to do something, and one of those ways can result in a catastrophe, then someone will do it." That is actually believed to have originated from a botched Air Force experiment back in the late 1940s. Leave it to the government.
"Whatever can go wrong, will" is actually called Finagle's Law, and will also be the title of the movie of my life, if one is ever made. I say this because, frankly, I am a dolt. The other day, just after I'd gotten off work and was about to unwind from a busy day, a young woman came to my door to tell me that she was opening a new Edward D. Jones office in my neighborhood, and she wanted to introduce herself and let everyone know. She even gave me a pamphlet.
Anyway, we had a very nice conversation, talked about where we grew up, etc. She asked me what I do for a living, and we also talked about that. I gave her a business card, she said she would contact me at some point, and she took her leave. I noticed she seemed a little nervous; I thought perhaps my boyish charm had gotten to her, so for a moment I was feeling very good about myself.
Then I went back inside and resumed changing clothes, which is what I had begun doing when the doorbell rang. It was then I discovered that my fly had been unzipped the entire time.
So I developed my own theory, called "The Brain Farts Theorum of Perpetual Futility," which states that, "Anytime you begin to feel good about yourself in any way, shape or form, you will do something stupid to screw it up and bring your delusions of competency crashing back down to earth."
Yep, that's my theory, and I'm damn proud of it. Wait ... did I misspell "theorem?" Crap. I'm useless ...