The Difference Between Precision and Accuracy
by Lana Frankle


   There are spreadsheets and flow charts, whose sole purpose is to quantify the objective value of emotions like awe, boredom, mild amusement, contemplative melancholy, and pride. They have pills to cause these too, and a panel of psychological and hormonal tests to determine your particular compatibility, the exact doses that would be needed to cause these feelings. They just don’t use them, because who would want them? Three darts in the air, pumpumpum. Scattered across the dart board haphazardly, almost aimless, distracted. Just to be happy is enough. Just enough to want to go on living. The pills are in boxes, tucked away in crates on shelves in warehouses, in ghost towns on big, flat states. Forgotten. Who would want such things? That level of control is simply unnerving anyway. That level of precision, intoxicating – undermining. Three more darts, together, as one they land PUM – a bullseye. All of these chemicals binding neatly with their wrong receptors – blocking something here, impersonating something else here. Precise. Twenty, maybe thirty such seeds, each precise, each different in nature and function. Seeds that come in brightly colored, ovular or circular, striped or lettered husks. Still seeds nonetheless. Precision, but what is it among all of these proverbial bullseyes that is so worthwhile? Row after row of students’ papers with exact figures, row after row of perfect “Fs”. All of these trees that pop up out of flowerbeds, all of these seeds, and none of them sprout.

Antonio Riestra             

Lana Frankle is the author of The Dismantling, a collection of stories. She is a doctoral student of neuroscience at Kent State University.