who so hunts to list

"If you interact with things in your life, everything is constantly changing. And if nothing changes, you're an idiot. "

So says Umberto Eco in this interesting interview about how lists are the stuff of culture.

(Nice decor huh?)

I remember sitting, rather hungover, with a musician friend at Sea View in the early morning, and feeling a ching of recognition through the haze as he said this thing that a lot of Indian traditional culture is made up of lists - a list of kisses (Kama Sutra), a list of the types of relationships there can be between lovers (Gita Govinda - I think he said), and so on.

The idea of an EDL, a film's edit, as a list of images perhaps comes very close to this idea and reminds us, to make that list with care.

In every day life my propensity for lists has been talked about earlier, here.

I often feel that if I make the list in the wrong order I never get through it and if I make it the right way then it orders my day. Perhaps that's just an excuse but I would like to check with Mr. Eco first please, thank you.

And here's a listing song I love

In some ways, the words of this song (we may never never meet again, on the bumpy road of love) circle back to something Eco says in his interview

"We have a limit, a very discouraging, humiliating limit: death. That's why we like all the things that we assume have no limits and, therefore, no end. It's a way of escaping thoughts about death. We like lists because we don't want to die."


Banno said…
Is that why I feel like an idiot, most times? Because my lists stare at me, unchanging.
parotechnics said…
if there are list-s in the plural, they are not unchanging.

Anyway he isn't saying lists are unchanging - only that you must not be. And frankly, aren't we changing clothes everyday, hmm?
Trisha Gupta said…
have you seen dasvidaniya? the connection between lists and death is rather literal, i suppose, but i quite liked it...
parotechnics said…
Hmm - I've not Trisha. But I was scared of the maudline premise. Well, maybe I should try to...

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