I’ll admit that the last two posts were kinda lame – what I have watched and what I have read? Really? Who cares?
They were just easy posts to write, compiling data from the past year, but now it is back to business – no more slacking off, no more fluff, no more … I guess no more of what I usually write.
I have recently been sloughing through War and Peace (I’ve finally gotten past page 1,000 but still have about 700 pages to go). I have to admit it is a very good book that really captures a great deal of the horrors of war and the indifference of the upper echelon of society (among about a billion other things). While a great battle is waged just outside of Moscow, a married woman is flirting with two men, promises to marry both of them, and becomes Catholic in order that she can have her marriage annulled. How’s that for a twist? Become Catholic to end a marriage. In the book the whole scenario is very interesting for many people – it is the gossip of Moscow and Petersburg.
I think the connection between tabloid entertainment and the horrors of reality is obvious. News is made when McDonald’s re-releases the McRibb or when someone’s marriage doesn’t last very long but not when people starve to death, etc. This is fluff, bread and circus kind of entertainment that appeases the masses so as to avoid the festering wounds of society. Yuck.
However, no one likes a dour, sour-puss kind of person. This is the person who is so involved in all of the suffering of the world that just to be in their presence is its own kind of suffering. Know anyone like that?
Activists, tree-hugging kind of Christians (and other do-gooders) again and again remind us that we need to consider the other (in a Lacanian, Buber kind of way). I agree that if we are only focused on ourselves then we are not fully living. Yet I don’t think I would argue that those who focus on pulp news are not focusing on themselves. We have a lot of distractions, crappy, enamoring distractions that keep us from knowing ourselves. So then the guilt comes that we need to help others and we don’t even know who we are and all we have to talk about is the soft-core snuff that passes for television.
Take some time to figure out who you are. Take care of yourself, get to know yourself in a substantial way and then start to consider others. Go for a walk. Read a book. Bake a cake. Etc, etc. This is a selfishness that isn’t so bad and may actually lead to something good. Hmm, maybe it is time for me to think more about myself…