Todays question comes from reader named Siobhan, and I thank you for this question. And though it might seem that this is too difficult for Great Zamboni, I can assure you it is not- the only difficulty was finding internet cafe open, to which I had to walk 47 miles through frozen Estonian pasture to where I am sitting now drinking hot brown water.
But why do we use this strange, “miscarriage” word in this context? We do not say when we accidentally break yoke in making breakfast, “oh I miscarried your egg I’m sorry.” When we drop something, we do not say, “excuse me, I miscarried my pencil, can you hand to me please”
This is why: Justice, virtue, or “the good” as Plato would call it, is something we “carry” within us. It is the burden of being human, if you will. When something goes awry, when fairness is perverted, then we as a society have “mis-carried”, or carried wrongly, let collapse this very justice that should be always living- you see Siobhan? Because Justice is the highest goal of society, we use this sad image, a miscarriage, to symbolize its loss.
To define by example, the internment of Japanese Americans here during World War II, Clarence Thomas, invention of flavored coffee like Hazlenut Creme Brulee, and Titanic winning best picture. Zamboni realize these not all of equal gravitas, but you get the idea.
Zamboni spent a few years building houses in nearby Estonian village with my father Shnorvillst, before he was eaten by a feral dog, orphaning the young Zamboni. When you do carpentry, you use a Level. This level is nothing more than a straight piece of steel with a small glass vial implanted in it. When Level is on something straight, when the Level is “level”, the little bubble in the vial is exactly in center. So too it is with us humans, we have a Level in ourselves that is always telling us “this is wrong, this is right.” We may choose to ignore, but we always carry this around.
By the way, if you ask, “well then Gene Shalit-Zamboni since you are now movie critic, what should have won?”
The Sweet Hereafter. It wasn’t even nominated.