Cyberspace Web





Enter the web.


The proairetic code, the dynamics of the game, the actions.

Actions (terms of the proairetic code) can fall into various sequences which should be indicated merely by listing them, since the proairetic sequence is never more than the result of an artifice of reading: whoever reads the text amasses certain data under some generic titles for actions (stroll, murder, rendezvous), and this title embodies the sequence; the sequence exists when and because it can be given a name, it unfolds as this process of naming takes place, as a title is sought or confirmed; its basis is therefore more empirical than rational, and it is useless to attempt to force it into a statutory order; its only logic is that of the "already-done" or "already-read" - whence the variety of sequences (some trivial, some melodramatic) and the variety of terms (numerous or few); here again, we shall not attempt to put them into any order. Indicating them (externally and internally) wil suffice to demonstrate the plural meaning entangled in them.

Barthes asserts that reporting actions objectively would be the only way to get them across, since events are inherently open to subjective interpretation and actions should be communicated with a minimum of subjectivity within them so that the reader (the audience) can associate any preferred meaning with a certain event. I agree with Barthes insofar as he defines the correct method for explicating actions, however I disagree with his mentioning the plural meaning, which suggests the existence of a discrete, finite set of meanings associated with each action.

Although some interpretations are more obvious than others (more on that in a little while) no action can be limited to a finite region of hyperconsciousness (a term denoting the totality of the semantic connections between all the concepts ever created, invented or discovered by humanity) and therefore the plural meaning of an action, I would hold, is the equivalent of the plural meaning which the human mind can readily grasp. Otherwise, an action is inherently linked to all other concepts within the mindscape (a hypothetical universe composed of the totality of all cognitive constructions) and that may be yet another reason why it would not make sense to communicate actions subjectively and subsequently alienate possibly obscure yet perfectly valid interpretations.

Football works especially well within this context because, compared to other team sports such as soccer, ice hockey and the like, it is much more discrete in nature. The individual actions are readily observable. The huddle (ACT. "to get together" : 1 : to form a strategy), the field kick (ACT. "to kick" : 2 : to initiate the game), the punt (ACT. "to kick" : 2 : to reinitiate the attack), the field goal (ACT. "to realize a goal" : 3 : to attain a moderate achievement), the touchdown (ACT. "to realize a goal" : 3 : to attain a remarkable achievement), the four downs (ACT. "to tackle" : 4 : to be prevented from advancing further) all constitute significant actions within the dynamics of the game. Every ten-yard advance resets the four downs that may have occurred, and therefore a new instance of the set of actions, a new list, a new sequnce, or as Barthes would say, a new artifice of reading, is constructed. In this respect, every ten-yard strip can be regarded as analogous to a lexia, and suitable lexia (sets of actions within the ten yards) from different football games, regardless of temporal constraints, can be pieced together to form cohesive games. Granted, that the identities of the two teams would have to be reassigned for each lexia in order to maintain consistency throughout this Frankenstein of a game; however, as far as ACT. is concerned, colors, identities and semantic content constitute as much significance as ..... something that is not at all significant.

Actions, therefore, define compressed packages which decompress into the mind of the beholder according to the nature of the action, the nature of the action's context, and the nature of the beholder's mind. The decompression algorithm is compiled dynamically based on all three factors, with probabilistically determined variables thrown in to ensure that, all things being equal, all things can never be equal.

The best we can do, then, is to narrate the story. Once the action is communicated, the rest is up to the reader, or to the spectator, to interpret. The hypertext has done its job, and that's why football players and game commentators are considered to have two remarkably different careers.

Would you care for another Barthesian code, perhaps?