many ideas together at
once can ruin them. Ideas need room to breathe.
In this case, two perfectly normal ideas are
forced to share a single handle under the guise of saving
space, time and material. But it is clearly a toxic combination,
and absurd. The presence of a toothbrush on one end
may not significantly affect the toilet cleaning function;
but the presence of the toilet brush destroys the usefulness
of the toothbrush. This kind of interaction is important
to consider when
If we take a smoky room, and start
adding nonsmokers to it, it has no effect on the air
quality until nonsmokers begin to displace smokers. But start
adding smokers to a room with clean air, and each smoker
measurably contributes to destroying the air quality.
Depending on the size of the space, it may require only
one smoker's preference to trump the preferences of many.
is a directional effect. In one direction the effect
is nothing; in the other it is everything. Smokers, noise
makers and other polluters frequently seem to miss
this point when they argue for laissez-faire equality.
to equate things that are not equal. Adding a spoonful
of vanilla pudding to a bucket of sewage does not turn
into vanilla pudding. But adding a spoonful of sewage
to a bowl of pudding does turn it into a bowl of sewage.
A common gripe is that people don't know how to program their
VCRs, and they get confused juggling all the remote
controls that operate the TV, cable box, VCR, stereo,
etc. The remote control was meant to be a convenience,
as was the VCR. But because each new piece of gear
comes with a different confusing interface, we are
continually forced to learn new and horrible ways to do things
that should be simple. Too much convenience becomes