Friday, 19 October 2012


You probably know the joke. In case you don't, I'll tell you the version I have.

God calls Adam to him.

“Yes,” says Adam, in a surly fashion.

“I've got an upgrade for you.”

“Another one? It's nothing but upgrades.”

“Ah,” says God, “but this one's a major upgrade.”

“Oh joy,” says Adam.

“Yes,” says God, “its marketing name is the thought and sex experience. I am going to give you the most powerful brain of any creature. No more simple reactions to your environment. That just makes you grumpy, as we have seen. Now you can interact with and change your experience.” Adam grunts. “And I am going to give you what we call private parts. No more splitting in two to make offspring. We're rolling it out across a range of species – but only you get the brain too. Now you'll be able to reproduce and keep all your memories. You'll be the same person.”

“What's so good about that?” asks Adam.

“You'll see.”

“I suppose I must.”

“There's only one thing.... There's a slight technical hitch. We're working on it, of course; but for now you can only think OR have sex. You can't do the two together. Now go to sleep...”

That joke occurred to me this morning as I was walking down the high street trying to avoid people on mobile phones.

I thought of language being invented overnight: and God said “Let there be language”

How astonishing that would be.

How astonishing would that be?

There's the Emerson quote about the stars appearing once in millennia.

You know we'd get used to it.

I looked at people clasping the little boxes to their ears and chattering away and wondered how much had been achieved by all that communication

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