Thursday, July 23, 2009

Lazy Fascinations

"I'm bored." My children were not allowed to say those words while they were growing up. Really. A human brain can always find fascination in something!

Yet, lately I've been thinking about what it is that fascinates us. Do you listen to the news? Do you watch movies? Do you have a favorite TV show? When story telling, every story teller knows that people are hooked when trouble shows up. There is no story without trouble.

Just ask the news people. We wonder why they only report bad news? It is because we would think the alternative boring. Why do many great movies come with warnings about violence, sex, swearing, etc? Isn't it because these things take us out of our "bored" state. They force some excitement, discomfort or fear upon us, and by doing so, we feel somehow awakened. But are we?

Do we suffer from lazy fascination? Do we ignore the glory around us, and wait for someone or some media to present something shocking, in order to entertain us? Could it be that we are bored with the world as we know it, and rather than act to love it into something better, we prefer to lay back and bask in the evil it has to offer?

Simon Weil has said:
Imaginary evil is romantic and varied; real evil is gloomy, monotonous, barren, boring.
Imaginary good is boring; real good is always new, marvelous, intoxicating.

What was the last movie you watched? Would your life be better if you were the main character? What was the last news clip you saw? Would your life be better if you and your family had been on the video clip?

I'm just thinking about our lazy fascinations...


Mark said...

I find myself falling into it w/a movie. I choose to, but the fascination is it is just "that"!

Jamie H Davis said...

I have strange fascinations, but I'm not sure that they come out of boredom (not that you said they do, either). I get keyed up by anticipation.... even if only anticipating something as simple as a post on one of these internet blogs or facebook thingies. Sometimes my fascinations are all-consuming -- not a good thing. I want to be fascinated by the "right" things as I move through life. I find myself taking two steps forward, but always one step back. I am not very advanced in this area, sadly. I wonder if I'm bored. I don't think I am. Boring maybe, but not bored. Okay, I am rambling now.... :)

Zee said...

i think it was Don DeLillo in his White Noise who discussed this issue. it's like with watching news - when something bad happens, everyone is suddenly awake and watching the rubble of an earthquake or whatever... that's why CNN is so popular, i think - they show all the gory details of stuff all around the world... but that's mostly re: the fact that there are weird things that fascinate us.