Tuesday, April 04, 2006

One of these days I'll remember what it means

Reading Dr. McNinja a few days ago, I encountered my old foe Deus ex machina. No matter how many times I look it up, I never remember what it means.

Fortunately, in today's day and age, I can always just Wikipedia anything I don't understand. Quoth the article:

In modern terms the Deus ex machina has also come to describe a person or thing that suddenly arrives and solves a seemingly insoluble difficulty. While in storytelling this might seem unfulfilling, in real life this type of figure might be welcome and heroic.

You don't say.

So if a couple of years ago I said, "Man, I wish I knew what 'Deus ex machina' meant, but am nowhere near anyone literate," and then Wikipedia became popular, I guess that would have been a Deus ex machina. And now my world is a little richer.

Current Music: XTC - Go 2
Current seemingly insoluble difficulty: Gosh, I sure am hungry right now.
Current really seemingly insoluble difficulty: World hunger


Edward said...

Deus ex machina just means 'machine of god'

your high school english teachers stink.

Anonymous said...

It actually means "God comes from the machine."

You stink.

Dickolas Wang said...

Oh snap!

dinning said...

Dude, swear to God, 2 days ago I was reading something, came across the term, thought to myself "why can't i ever remember was deux ex machina means?", and looked it up in wikipedia.


GOC said...

your world is plenty rich

Adam said...

Wikipedia would not qualify as a Deus ex Machina because there's not much godly about it. The important part of a DeM is that it is unlikely to the point of absurdity (like the steel chains that just happen to be located above the bad guy with the gun in Twins). A DeM for you would have been if E! just happened to have a piece on DeMs while you were wanting to know what a DeM was.

Dickolas Wang said...

Hm... while yours is unmistakeably godlier, Wikipedia still seems pretty godly to me. I think my likelihood-of-divine-intervention threshold is much lower than yours.

Graham said...

I think what he means is that a typical Deus ex Machina seemingly descends out of the blue, whereas Wikipedia evolved slowly and methodically.

Dickolas Wang said...

Right, but by the time I heard of it, it already contained all the world's information.