We have a rule in our house. No recounting your sleep dreams to each other…
So last night I had this crazy dream, I was in Tokyo and I was carrying three talking chipmunks in my backpack, when…
Zippit, my loved one. Not on my time. This dream-event never happened and, in this current dimension, most likely never will. Therefore, this is a selfish monologue of which I want no part. Take it to Russell Grant.
However, for this blog I have decided to break with this rule just once (and for which I duly apologise, but I’ll make the ‘dream’ bit as short as possible).
A few nights ago, I dreamt I took into a shoe repair shop five pairs of patented, high-heeled shoes that needed re-heeling. The cobbler lined them up on the counter and asked,
“Ah, I see these are Latour shoes. Can’t you wear something that is more comfortable? These look very awkward to walk in”.
“No, no”, I replied, “I need to attend all these events this year and I must wear these Latour shoes to look the part. As you can see, they’ve taken a bit of a bashing as I’ve tried to break them in, but they’re getting more comfy.”
“Ok”, she replied, “that will be £55”
“£55!!”, I remember exclaiming – and this is when I realised I have been a student too long – “Do you do student discount?” and brandished my student card.
I got them dream-repaired for £46 – result!
So, this dream sequence stayed with me over the next few day and got me thinking about how we choose the terminologies we work with, or even as we try to shoe horn them in, when analysing and theorising our data. I won’t be the first to admit that learning about ANT has been like learning a whole new language where the wrong subject-object-verb configuration can reveal you as an ANT interloper. Each word has to be carefully picked up, held against the light, and inspected for its suitability and sense-making for an ANT-styled sentence. After all, the description in ANT is the analysis.
However, appropriating terminology adopted, or created, by fellow ANT authors is only affording me to make sense of my data to a point. I am struggling to find the right combination of words to fully express my analytical concepts. At my last supervision, it was suggested that I could start shaping my OWN terminology to help me conceptualise my data!! This is probably the biggest, scariest outcome of my PhD process so far. I now have a RESPONSIBILITY to add to a new language – a new way of describing – that needs to make sense of a very complex ontology. So, I am excited, but nervous, as I start playing around with new configurations of words, verb conjugations and meanings. ‘Playing’, I think, is the key notion here. I am allowing myself some time to play with the words and this can only help my thinking process as I cut, paste, delete, paste, cut, and delete some more. I am hoping in the next few months I can start replacing those dream high-heels with a few pairs of lovely comfy flip flops that won’t make my feet hurt so much….