Tuesday, January 10, 2006

"Outside the Game Grid for the first time, Flynn found himself riding for his life through a fantastic landscape of glowing walls, modular shapes, and darting vector lines. He was not unhappy."
--pg. 88

Happiness is riding for your life through darting vector lines... although being 'not unhappy' is not the same as 'being happy.' You're not unhappy; you're tired, hungry, confused... not exactly happy, but not exactly unhappy, either.

'How are you?'
'Well, I'm not unhappy. And yourself?'
'Of course you're not unhappy. Look at those glowing walls! Dig those modular shapes! And look at those vector lines: how they dart about! Why, that's enough to turn anyone's frown upside down!'

Simpsons: "That's a smile, not an upside-down frown."


At 12:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Actually, the author intended to convey the opposite by using the double negative. While there are four possible pieces of information that can be conveyed with a word and its antonym (happy, not happy, unhappy, not unhappy) in this case, the author uses direct implication to describe Flynn's happiness. We know this through the use of the other words in context: "riding for his life" and "fantastic" and based on what we know of Flynn's personality since he loves the machine so much.

Plus by not directly thinking it (or expressing it) he:

1. Refuses to tempt fate.
2. Ominously and grimly forebodes a future he knows must come.


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