making sense of philosophy

Mark Matthewson was between jobs. He had 30 minutes. He was in his pickup smoking a cigarette and thinking. “If Nietzsche said, ‘I think therefore I am’, if I stop thinking, will I stop being? And if so, what’s to explain Sarah?” Despite getting the name wrong- “Descartes” was faded on his quote calendar, he thought he had a good point. Fortunately, the running voice in his head was present. It panted, then said, “You’ve got nothing to worry about buddy. Now, put that cigarette out and come for a run. You’ve got 25 minutes. That’s enough for a good jog!” Mark sent the voice for another lap.

Still, the thought haunted Mark. When he arrived home from his second job- the graveyard shift at a cemetery- he accosted Sarah, drowsily making her morning coffee.

“Honey?” he said, tentatively.

“Oh, hi. Good morning.”

“What are you thinking about?”

“Oh, nothing.”

He thought, “a-ha!”. Then Sarah continued.

“I was just thinking it would be nice to have a new dishwasher- will you look at this cup? It’s filthy!”

She would often load the dishwasher, close the door, and return an hour later, commenting on how quiet the machine was.

“I’m going to bed,” he said and started toward the bedroom.

“Honey?” she asked.


“Well, what do you think?”

“I think Nietzsche was full of crap.”

“That’s nice. But what about the dishwasher?”

“I think we should get an automatic one.”

“That’s brilliant!”

Mark smiled, pleasantly surprised by his intellect.