I have a lot of conversations with a lot of different people. Part of it’s my job, part is my collection of hobbies, part is just my nature. Sometimes, some patterns emerge.

Now, I say “patterns” but whether or not they actually are patterns depends a lot on my own interpretation. In the same way that the Big Dipper only looks like a ladle if you both a.) can comfortable impose your mental image of a ladle overtop of some dots and b.) ignore other dots, based on the fact that they don’t look like a ladle to you. So whether or not there’s any real trend or relation among these different conversational points is up to me.

But that’s the point. I’m drawing the connections for myself, to explore thoughts and ideas, to maybe manufacture a picture that can then be meaningful to others. If I want to show someone a particular star, it’s easier to describe the Big Dipper than to list the coordinates of the star in the sky.

Patterns, even manufactured ones, create something that makes communication easier. People can learn individual facts, but stories are what stick. A constellation in the sky is a story you can tell. A pattern of thoughts and ideas becomes a story, too.

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