“Dad I’m watching a YouTube video about Philosophy. Do you agree with Sartre?”

My first thought was – WHY and Why….

I searched deep into the recesses of my memory. When I was at University the second year included one hour a week of an option module. I actually selected Philosophy as the option. Why. Because it sounded like the easiest option available. This proved correct. Every week for for one hour I sat at the back and slept. My strategy was to sleep and then when the exam came round to crash read a little philosophy book (“Seven Theories of Human Nature”) which was purchased on the cheap.

I can’t remember much about the course, although I still have the book. But I do recall one particular lesson. The unfortunate Lecturer had placed a chair at the front of the class and was trying to encourage a philosophical discussion about whether this chair was an actual chair. I was at the back with a hangover shaking my head at this nonsense. Then the door opened and a fellow student called Jonathon entered looking like he had seen a ghost with his hair standing on end. A faint smell of burning seemed to follow him.

“Sorry I’m late my electric blanket exploded”

At which point he sat down on the chair which was subject to the philosophical discussion. With perfect comic timing one of the chair legs buckled sending poor Jonathon tumbling backwards. Clearly the Lecturer had been onto something when he questioned the chairs purpose.


When I told this story to our son he looked quizzically at me for a few seconds then said quietly.

“Might as well ask the cat”

58 thoughts on “Philosophy

  1. That’s hilarious. Personally, I like philosophy. Sartre actually isn’t too bad (Nausea is actually a really good book), but I generally avoid existentialism. Basically, I think most of existentialism is pointless. If I cannot physically see the chair as anything else, what does it matter if it is not a chair? I will still use it in ways that I find useful. Being a chair vs. not changes nothing. Thinking about it changes nothing. But, that’s my view.

    Liked by 5 people

  2. I want to be in your philosophy class. I want to see the nonexistent chair, the fried guy & you with a hangover. Heh.

    Tell your son to investigate Krishnamurti & Alan Watts…two very interesting men. And, that cats used to be the guardians of the underworld (Egyptian).

    Liked by 5 people

  3. I loved philosophy, studied it hard, read every essay in every book, debated with my stack of index cards and everything. And in the end, I remember just as much as you do. And I love cats. Mine’s hungry again. Bye for now.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Pfffffffffft that’s totally me. I took a semester of philosophy in school and do not remember anything but this “now” chat about “now” is ever-changing to a new “now,” and then the new “now” beats out the old “now” and the “now now now now” πŸ™‚

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      1. Oh! I’ve learned so much about Keith Moon from Eric Idle’s Sortabiography: ALWAYS LOOK ON THE BRIGHT SIDE. I got it for Bo for Christmas. Idle was good friends with Moon, even saw him the night he died. You might enjoy reading it!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Funnily It’s sat waiting to be read. It was my present to myself. Read Michael Palins one, really interesting. Just finished one of Spike Milligan’s war books, madness. Also recently read Stephen Fry’s autobiography. Another really clever and funny man but also often a deeply unhappy person. He talks about it so well.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I had a similar experience in college…. I it so sad that I didn’t try to get anything out of that course….and now i wish get to go back for one of the lectures just to join a discussion or just listen to our prof’s insights!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

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