On Feb 24, 2007, at 10:38 AM, Ken Meltsner wrote:
> Odd that this has come up -- I was just looking at Common Lisp and
> Scheme implementations, as well as a smattering of Haskellish tools
And then there's Haskell...
Haskell is like "that girl." You know the one...
You never really went steady, but you'd run into her from time to
time while knocking around in disreputable joints, usually late at
night, every several months or so. She looked so hot, so sleek, so
sexy, so expressive, so exotic. You'd end up back at her place and
the night would just... take off. A complete blur of hot, sweaty,
feverish, delirious, fumbling passion. You'd do things to each
other... you'd do things to her, she'd do things to you... things
that you're not even sure have names, that you're pretty sure are
illegal almost anywhere. Even her kinks have kinks --- and after one
of these nights, you'd realize that you yourself had a lot more kinks
than you. And it wasn't just physical, it was --- cerebral.
Ethereal. Transcendent. But it would all whiz by in a blur, and by
morning you'd find yourself lightheaded, a bit confused, and
stumbling homeward to your regular gal.
Over the next few days and weeks you'd find yourself occasionally
drifting away, thinking about her. Haskell. You'd be there, banging
away at your regular girl, and find yourself thinking "you know, if I
was with Haskell, I'd be doing this completely differently." You'd
think "I could be doing so much bigger and better stuff with
Haskell." Now, your regular girl, she's not as exotic as Haskell.
Pretty, maybe, if you're lucky. (Perhaps your regular girlfriend's
name is Python. ;-) But not nearly as --- weird. Wild. Cool.
Exciting. Don't get me wrong --- your girl, she's wonderful. You've
got a wonderful relationship. She's --- comfortable. You can bang
away at her all day and night. She's accommodating. Easy going.
You work well together. But --- confidentially --- she's, well,
maybe just a little bit boring. You'd catch yourself thinking these
things, and the guilty pangs would get to you... You'd quash the
thoughts, buckle down, and get back to banging away. Comfortable...
there's a lot to be said for that, ya know? Comfortable... just
keep telling yourself that.
Months would go by. Late some night you'd find yourself out,
disreputable places again. Maybe that hacker bar, LtU. Somebody'd
slip you an URL for some renegade paper, you know, one of those
papers. You'd run into Haskell again. And the whole thing starts over.
Eventually, you're going to get the ultimatum. Haskell's ultimately
just like any other girl on some level; she needs commitment.
Eventually, after one night of wild, feverish, kinky, abstract
passion, she's going to say to you: "All these times, and you don't
understand me at all! You know, you're going to have to get serious,
mister! I've got needs, too. You're going to have to get serious
about my monads, or that's the last time you're going to play with
them! Got it?"
...and then, you've got to make The Choice.
Chances are, you're going to go back to your regular gal. Haskell's
just too much for any one man, probably. She leaves a trail of
broken, brainy, embittered PhDs and former programmers behind her.
She ruins you for the RealWorld. You can ride a while, but you
probably can't go the distance with her. Go back to your regular gal
and try not to think too much about what you've seen. Done. Felt.
Maybe you can salvage a little happiness; but it'll be hard. After
all... you've tasted Haskell.
She's not like anything else.
jb -- found here (http://www.xent.com/pipermail/fork/Week-of-Mon-20070219/044101.html)