12 Comments

  1. Organic is akin to original or creative and thus distinct from formulaic? Or maybe formulaic means GMO?

  2. Organic fruit and veg is often lumpy and irregular. Non-organic is often uniform by design…or formulaic. Admittedly, I find the term more enticing than ‘non-organic’. The latter makes me think of plastic.

  3. I think the play here is actually on how the word, “organic”, is used outside of chemistry and produce. [I will now attempt to get close to being in the ballpark with a description how “organic” is used. Just try and think of those moments when a character says “organic” or “organically”.] The word organic has been used to be something like expression formed from the deep connection to the earth and the expanse of the universe. It’s kind of like letting natures creativity (past or present) come through the artist/creator. This is a different idea from when the universe speaks to you (which a skeptic might call a coincidental intuition among other things.)

    (I do feel that sometimes, the formulaic “Once upon a time” can help get the creativity ball rolling.)

    How come spell check couldn’t guess that “coincidental” was what I meant when I wrote “coincidencidental”?

  4. Thanks, Kevin A. Your account of “organic” (and some of the others that are similar) pretty much matches my sense of what is meant in the general context of creativity or just any kind of writing or reporting or – as dvandom said earlier – storytelling. (Which is to say, not in the special contexts of chemical compounds or farming.) In that sense, where “organic” means something like “authentic”, “formulaic” would be, if not a total antonym, at least one way of definitely not being authentic/organic.

    But of course as a sign on the produce counter, “organic” must come from the farming context. Yet “formulaic” blocks that and requires the creativity context. Aha! and humor emerges from the clash and adjustment of contexts, just as [19th century?] theory would have it!

  5. Or as more modern Theory might say, the creativity context INTERROGATES the farming context. (Or, leads us to interrogate it.) I can never read that without thinking of bad cops in a noir movie “giving someone the third degree.”

  6. I was recently confronted by the use of “organic” vs. “inorganic” in terms of “corporate growth” (the former being actual growth, and the latter really means “acquisition”).

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