Wednesday, August 31, 2005

There is No Suman in This Post





Agh. It's Wednesday again.

I don't feel like writing about suman today. For some reason, I feel like writing about baby turtles. Why I suddenly feel like writing about baby turtles, I don't know.

Sometimes, however, a man has to swallow his pride and just write what he's supposed to write. Free inspiration and ideas are all well and good, but we shouldn't let ourselves dictate what to write all the time.

Looking back on everything, I realize that this marks my 15th post for the Suman Latik Web Ring. I've counted my previous articles just to make sure:
Three Panels
Scum and Villainy
Stop Looking at My Chest
...And Demons, Too!
Union Negotiations
Turning the Worm
Interactive
Kicking the Bucket
The Suman Reunion
Rice Essay
The Art of Writing Without Writing
The Google Files
Building a Better... er... Something
Avenues of Description

In retrospect, that's a pretty motley collection of titles. I'm surprised that I've been coming up with combinations of words like these for fifteen weeks now.

This list of titles brings to mind other lists of titles, most notably those of television series whose storylines I follow. (I don't know why I do this either, really. I don't even watch TV regularly.) Here's the set of episode titles from the first season of The X-Files, for example:
The Pilot
Deep Throat
Squeeze
Conduit
The Jersey Devil
Shadows
Ghost in the Machine
Ice
Space
Fallen Angel
Eve
Fire
Beyond the Sea
GenderBender
Lazarus
Young at Heart
E.B.E.
Miracle Man
Shapes
Darkness Falls
Tooms
Born Again
Roland
The Erlenmeyer Flask

I don't know about you, but there's some sort of fascination in seeing all those titles clumped up in one place.

I have quite a bit of respect for the X-Files series, actually. You'll notice that most of the titles for their first season are composed of one word only; Those titles are a testament to their writers' ability to compress an entire episode's basic plotline into the shortest introduction possible. In addition, the multiple-word titles are fairly well-known dramatic phrases -- while they don't compress ideas as well as the single-word titles do, they give a sense of familiarity to anyone reading them for the first time.

Let's try this again, shall we? This time, let me grab something from The Simpsons:
Treehouse of Horror VII
You Only Move Twice
The Homer They Fall
Burns Baby Burns
Bart After Dark
A Milhouse Divided
Lisa's Date With Density
Hurricane Neddy
El Viaje Misterioso De Nuestro Homer (a.k.a. The Mysterious Voyage of Our Homer)
The Springfield Files
The Twisted World of Marge Simpson
Mountain of Madness
Simpsoncalifragilisticexpiala-(annoyed grunt)-cious
The Itchy & Scratchy & Poochie Show
Homer's Phobia
Brother From Another Series
My Sister, My Sitter
Homer vs. The 18th Amendment
Grade School Confidential
The Canine Mutiny
The Old Man and the Lisa
In Marge We Trust
Homer's Enemy
Simpsons Spin-Off Showcase
The Secret War of Lisa Simpson

One of the things about The Simpsons is that their titles seem to get more creative with every new season; This list is from their eighth. The Simpsons seems to take its cue from popular phrases, sayings, movie titles, book titles, even self-references (with my personal favorite being the Ned-Flanders-themed Alone Again, Nautra-Diddly.) That, and the series is pretty good, too. :)

Sometimes I wonder if the style is done deliberately. I mean, did the creative directors of the X-Files specifically target single-word titles? Did the producers of The Simpsons only approve names that poked fun at pop culture?

I don't know, really. But they had some interesting results, right? It's funny how one can get all of those titles from a single theme.

In the same way, I suppose, it's funny how we can get such a diverse range of topics that even so much as remotely touch on suman latik. It's as though the presence of a single set topic, even one that we may not feel like writing about, can inspire us to produce works that are beyond what we normally write.

If anything, we've come a long way from that day in the University of the Philippines where Dean Alfar raised an intriguing example about mundane blog posts. Yeah, I think we've made our point fairly clear in the course of the last three months.

So... can I write about baby turtles now?

Oh, good. Thanks.




Latikman
Suman versus Latikman

1 comment:

Gem said...

Ah Sean-chan.
Sticky as it goes.