carpe linguam

Tom Christiansen tchrist at
Fri Aug 20 10:54:50 EDT 1999

Private mail has indicated a remarkably amount of distrust about my
learning Python.  Some verges on the unbelievable.  

And yes, I react to personal digs unquietly.  That this should
come as a surprise is itself a surpise.

The first and smaller thing I wish to say is that when I mentioned
"sifting through the dreck for gems", I meant sorting through the flames
that have occasionally been levelled at me, to skip their heat and
continue on in search of useful information on other people's postings.
I was certainly *not* talking about the language as dreck, as one
person thought I meant.

Secondly, and much more importantly, the reason I am learning Python
is *not* because I wish to "score some quick hits and prove to c.l.p.m
that Perl is best after all" [sic] as one private querent asked, to my
complete and utter horror.

You may not have known this of me, but I am a collector of languages,
and to some extent, of language trivia.  Can you honestly believe that
I studied Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, or Latin merely
to prove to myself and the world that English was the best language?

Answer for yourself the question of why I learned those languages,
and you'll understand my motivations on learning Python.  Think about
it for a bit, please.

Done thinking already?  Sigh.  Very well, it's quite simple, really:

 *  I want to be able to talk to other people in their own language.
 *  I want to read their literature.  
 *  I want insights into my own tongue.

Is that really so terribly difficult to identify with?  No conspiracy
theories of nefarious purposes are required.

Well, that's it for now.  The plane beckons, and I'm off to Monterey.
I hope to see some of you there.

"They always had a rational explanation for the haunting, but they had a dog
 that could talk."
				- My comment about Scoobie-Doo

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