Tuesday, May 15, 2007


UNDERSTANDING, n. A cerebral secretion that enables one having it to know a house from a horse by the roof on the house. Its nature and laws have been exhaustively expounded by Locke, who rode a house, and Kant, who lived in a horse.

His understanding was so keen
That all things which he'd felt, heard, seen,
He could interpret without fail
If he was in or out of jail.
He wrote at Inspiration's call
Deep disquisitions on them all,
Then, pent at last in an asylum,
Performed the service to compile 'em.
So great a writer, all men swore,
They never had not read before.
—Jorrock Wormley

2007 Update: adj. Able and available to empathize with oneself in the company of others. This differs from SENSITIVE, the ability to sympathize, in a manner neither the empathetic nor the sympathic, nor those who use such words in conversation would understand or honor in any case. Tender hearted muttonheads!


quilly said...

HellO You're kidding, right?

quilly said...

Minka, I swear, I have no understanding of how this could have happened.

Minka said...


Mutha said...

Understanding: The prize (not always the solace) that can come with knowledge.

G said...

Understanding: Neighbor of acceptance, former babysitter of hatred.

Really can't say where that came from - but there it is.

puppybrose said...

Understanding: sitting?

puppybrose said...

Confucious say: "I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand."

i may not have a firm understanding of all things "Confucious", but somehow, this makes sense to me...

pia said...

I was here. Your post wasn't
I do things, and later come back to seven comments before me

I am un-understanding of this

This is also your strangest definition yet

But I might not have a clear understanding of it

ariel said...

"One half of the world cannot understand the pleasure of the other." Jane Austen

Doug said...

Quilly, you don't have to know where you're going to get there.

Minka, I think you know very well.

Mutha, glory without comfort. That describes so many things including comfort.

Interesting quote, Neva. One of these days I should try doing.

Pia, a rushed morning is no time for thought.

Ariel, one half of the world cannot understand that the other is faking it.

ariel said...

Doug, some of the other cannot even fake it!

the amoeba said...


"Look, up in the sky!"

"It's a bird!"

"It's a plane!"


"It's a bird."

See also good ol' Noah, standin' underneath the elephant ...

Theresa said...

"A blind man knows he cannot see, and is glad to be led, though it be by a dog; but he that is blind in his understanding, which is the worst blindness of all, believes he sees as the best, and scorns a guide." -Samuel Butler

I am like the blind man waiting to be led, though it be by Doug. Will I arrive to an understanding of this post?

javajazz said...

"let me in, let me in!" she cried,
understanding that words could be used as anything from impressive verbal weaponry to warm welcoming soothing comfort...
i dont always have the key to the giant locked word door...
wouldnt it be sweet if someone just left the door open a touch?
for that is the language i understand more than any.

TLP said...

"It was my understanding there would be no math."

I'm such an understanding blog-mom that I'm commenting on your post from the UNC Charlotte library. See what a good girl I am? UNDERSTAND dawg????

esiumbdh: that I don't understand at all.

ariel said...

Theresa, actually, this is the other way around. Doug gives the definition, and we try to explain him what he is talking about.

the Samuel Butler quote is hilarious in more ways than one!

Doug said...

Ariel, those are called aristocrats.

Amoeba, there's nothing better than a birdpoop joke. I just hope the penguin and the crow don't catch you.

That's a great quote, Theresa. The secret to understanding my definitions is to drop by when I had a better morning.

JJ, (psst-empty room) But we'll leave the light on for you.

Ariel, thank you. I'm glad the veterans of this site are so honest.

Tom & Icy said...

I don't understand. I don't over stand either.

Jamie Dawn said...

I have a good understanding of College Algebra.
I don't mean to brag - well, maybe I do - but I got a perfect score on my final. My suffering is over.
Praise God from whom all blessing flow!
Can I get an Amen from a muttonhead??

Doug said...

Icy, it's a delicate balance.

Amen, Jamie Dawn, from a creature here below.

Omnipotent Poobah said...

understanding - The belated realization that everyone else is just as screwed up as you.

actonbell said...

Able and available to empathize with oneself in the company of others.

Oh, this is like when someone says, "I am SO misunderstood!"


G said...

I shall try to be understanding of the fact that you just glazed right over me today - right over me. What's the matter - do I need a brighter bulb?!

Anyway, and by the way - what IS so funny about peace, love and understanding?

Minka said...

I just re-worded tender hearted muttonheads!

I hope nobody else will understand...

Doug said...

Ooops, TLP, you're the best blogmama ever. I'll never forget it.

Poobah, there's nothing like a sewertime epiphany.

Right, Actonbell! That's the ticket!

Sorry, G. Um. The hat?

No problem here, Minka.

Logophile said...

Sometimes understanding is too hard for the overwhelmed.

cooper said...

"Look, up in the sky!"

"It's a bird!"

"It's a plane!"


"It's a bird."

Now that is understanding in more ways then one.

Theresa said...

Thank you, Ariel, my limited understanding reaches far enough to see the point of this game, but I just had to stick that quote in somehow.

Theresa said...

"It is by universal misunderstanding that all agree. For if, by ill luck, people understood each other, they would never agree." -Pierre Charles Baudelaire

I'm afraid our understanding is too deep to agree on what Doug's definition really means.

Understanding could also be the ability to see others' faults, and the wisdom not to point them out. In that case, I'm afraid I often don't understand.

puppybrose said...

Understanding: Brain cell alignment, often achieved by the shaking of one's head and/or someone else's shoulders.

*shakes own head* is it me, or should Wednesday's post be up by now?? ah well, it's my understanding that teh Penguin has a fine and fabulous post up in TEH SNARK today... guess i'll go read that, instead. ; )

Minka said...

puppy, does that mean I am sorta a stand-in, for when the WA dude doesn´t deliver? I am not sure how I feel about Bierce´s rejects reading my stuff :)

quilly said...

I have no understanding of tardiness. I am here on time!

puppybrose said...

Penguin: are you calling me a "reject" missy? heh heh. come to think of it, wouldn't be the first time. ; )

Quilly: hear hear! or should that be here, here? whatever... i'm with ya, friend.

Minka said...

Maybe he choked on his own sarcasm?

God, I´ll be real sorry if that turns out to be true!

*prays for the first time in ages*

ariel said...

oh Doug, I'm so sorry! I've forgotten to email you today's fables!

quilly said...

Now look what you've done, Doug! Minka is praying! I say we all pitch in and buy this Dawg an alarm clock!

Elbot said...

Understanding: Listening and nodding.

Doug said...

Logo, sometimes lifting a finger is.

Cooper, sometimes wisdom just falls from the sky and sometimes you find it under foot.

Another great quote, Theresa. I guess I understand, too, then.

Neva, I actually posted on the wrong blog this morning. (still late, though.)

Minka, Owie!

Ariel, get with the program. No one wants what will happen if I start writing this blog. The blogosphere is liable to become a great globe-spanning Hungary.

Quilly, atheists may be rare in foxholes and at sea, but the blogosphere has plenty.

Uh-huh, Elbot. You bet.