Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Because me, myself, I come and go

Excuse the bubbliness of this post, it's actually something I wrote some time ago, which doesn't really explain anything, since as bubbliness goes, it comes and goes, it comes and goes... karma...karma..karma..karma chameleon...


Welcome to the wonderful world of Rand! It's been a while since I've started out with a greeting so I thought I'd spit one out. Anyways when I'm depressed, apathetic, feeling empty or any combination of the three (there are differences between the three but the differences do not constitute a barrier, they are more like shades of being really screwed up) I can only watch certain TV shows. Simpsons always, and Scrubs usually. Other shows I tend to get tired of very quickly even if they are shows I love and I can see that they are high quality and that on normal occassions I would love to watch them.
I think why the Simpsons is so easy to watch is because it never gets too serious and because it is just completely hilarious. Also there's nostalgic value. Even that said, there are certain episodes I can't watch. Lisa's Rival for example I can't watch, probably because I don't like seeing Lisa suffering, even if the episode is pretty good (the most awesome gag is Bart getting Milhouse on the FBI's Most Wanted List and then tipping the FBI off and finally the Fugitive scene). But most of the episodes of the Simpsons have such non-stop crazy off the wall humor that it's very easy to watch, and very easy on the nerves.
Scrubs also has a lot of that crazy off the wall humor and maybe that's why it's easy to watch. But what's strange is that it is also a semi-dramatic show, and in most cases dramas are the first to go when my depression interferes with my tv watching. Scrubs involves death, character growth, etc., so it's strange that when my mind is in a state that usually wants to avoid anything actually pulling at the emotions it should choose Scrubs. But maybe its the fact when Scrubs pulls at you, it pulls at you in situations that it depicts as ordinary. Thus you don't have to dig into your heart for emotions you weren't prepared for and for extraordinary variants of those emotions, the ordinary sort of sadness is appropriate, the ordinary sort of self-reflection is alright. That said, there are still certain Scrubs episodes I can't watch, I haven't been able to get myself to watch My Own Personal Jesus even though it's an episode I'd really like to watch. (On the other hand this theory might be completely off or it might be a combination of this plus most of the sadness is not critical of the characters which allows me to feel that emotion without feeling the pull of sympathetic guilt, which may be what I'm really trying to avoid, maybe, I'm not sure, one can never truly stare into their head and completely understand it, Godel actually proved that.)
I write this for a couple reasons, first of all, this is what's in my head right now, secondly, this is one of those odd little things about how my mind works that I and hopefully some of you find fascinating, thirdly, I take my tv watching pretty seriously. Well, maybe not that seriously, I can enjoy it without analyzing it. But tv provokes me, it touches me, it keeps my mind active by pulling out emotions that were inactive, forcing me to think out jokes and dramatic situations, and sparking my imagination. To rebuke those who say tv kills imagination, I'd say my imagination is build up by tv. I'm able to access the ideas, words, and images of tv to build up my ideas, to use as inspiration. Many of jokes were inspired (although not necessarily copied) from the Simpsons. I only really thought of robotic life after watching transformers. My first ideas about mecha only came after watching Gundam Wing. My ideas about the fantasy epic really took off only after watching Record of Lodoss War. But my ideas did not stay derivitive copies of these tv shows, rather they evolved into other directions, sometimes making them untracable to their origin. On the shoulders of these giants my ideas stand. Some may argue books can play the same role, and they can, but tv provides images, which helps my imagination imagine images built on those of tv, that is not to say that books are worse, books force my mind to imagine my own images, on the other hand tv helps my mind imagine more complex images, and anyways, the worth of a story depends most importantly on the story not the medium.
Some would argue that it is best for the mind to be untainted by tv so it can imagine ideas completely original. I remember a story by Orson Scott Card called "Unaccompanied Sonata," it is an amazing story and everyone should read it. Among the many concepts it contained (although this was not the theme, but rather a background concept, and it didn't really recommend this so much as say this was how the world of this story worked) was the idea that a musician to be truely original had to be completely cut off from any music. When the musician of the story did hear music suddenly he started altering his music based on what he heard, making it in some way just a little derivative. Because of this he was cast out of music. The idea is intriguing, but I like the idea that just like science art can build upon itself. Yes, it is interesting to see fresh perspectives from those who haven't studied the art (and I use art in a broad way including tv, books, etc.), but those who have studied art can build on the past, learning from the flaws and successes to perfect the art. Yes, things will be a little derivative in some ways, but honestly, I'm not afraid of things being a little derivative, as long as it's done well. TV is just like any other art in the fact that it can offer ideas, words and images which can be used to build more stories and art. So I do watch tv with pride and appreciation, at its best it is art, and it is wonderful.
And on a more personal note, when I'm really depressed sometimes TV with the ideas it gives me helps push me out of my depression just like a book might or a painting might. On the other hand, tv does provide a distraction, which has cost me much time, but no blessing in this world is without its drawbacks. Yet I think tv is most definitely worth its drawbacks.
That's about all I want to say about that, so take it to your head, take it to your heart, and remember Rand rocks. Goodnight Folks!

And God Bless.

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