Wherever you actually are might have no name at all

OK, so, this “Black River Falls, Wisconsin” I saw this morning on the highway, as I passed it—Black River Falls is the name of a place, as as compared to other places, like Rockford, Ill., or Chicago, or Iowa, etc. A name is a kind of a placeholder—it labels what it refers to but words are placeholders—any words, all words (my server was “Howard,” says the ticket he brought—17.48, too much to give a good tip with the 20$ M gave me, which is my only cash. M heard me counting change and said she had cash and I said she’s fancy ‘cuz she has lightweight money.)

I got the oils changed, I told M is what I was gonna do. An oil change vs. oils changed—though it’s only the one kind of oil. But what plurals mean with liquid substances is tricky/unclear, anyway.

“Black River Falls”—it’s a sentence, actually, and it’s probably merely descriptive—that’s the town at the falls on the Black River. But, and this gets to my point in “Big Things Photographed from Inches Away” post about what names actually refer to, “BRF” refers to the town, the area, the government—an abstraction, in other words.

Wherever you actually are might have no name at all. This is the idea that came while I drove. Do I really mean it—in what way? (My __ card was declined—oops. Let’s try [a second card]—damn. I hate to make dude run a 3rd—I do still have the cash—OK, the [second] card worked. I gave a $4 tip on the $17.48. May soon need to poop. But go to get car, then Woodman’s, then home, and write more or nap. I’m not sure why I felt I needed to come up here on 1st Saturday of school year—eh—to get the oils change done, I guess.)

I’m not even quite sure what this means, but the image is this: that if I’m sitting in grass at a park, or a yard, or along a side of road—or when I’m at a particular place in a building, in an auditorium, in my classroom—there’s no way to locate these places—? Now that’s kinda like, you know, not true—on the earth, you can be located by G.P.S. coordinates, or my measurements (23 feet south of the light pole) or by further names (classroom A106, seat 353).

So what am I talking about? Well …

[From journal of Sat., 20 August 2016, Journal 233, page 152-3]

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