Friday, June 29, 2007

Denial and "Lost"

One of the take-aways from Matt Stockton’s “Television and the Presentation of Reality” class at PCC was a mental note to myself to critically assess “Lost,” a TV series Matt recommended for its complex, involving plotlines.

It’s about marooned plane crash victims…and then some.

I started to watch the first episode (replete with the gore, confusion and mayhem at the crash site) but allowed myself to be distracted when the script came unhinged. A doctor describes his botched surgery in a monologue that compares his doomed patient’s spinal fluid to angel hair spaghetti.

I mean really.

I may get back to “Lost,” but right now, and for the indefinite future, I have better things to do.

Maybe it’s just where I am in life. Maybe multiple TV episodes are for the young and their seemingly endless lives. Or maybe they are for those who really don’t have anything better to do. That’s harsh, I know, but I’ll put it out there for consideration.

Thoughts like this take me to Robert Grudin’s magnificent book “Time and the Art of Living.” You can pretty much dip into it anywhere.

Here’s were I dipped today. It’s about how our failures to act are as important as our actions. The notion isn’t unrelated to the above.

“….time keeps nothing with as deadly care as the ledger of our omissions. This is nowhere as apparent as in our personal relationships. We lose what is valuable in these — love, joy, communality — less through conflict and tragedy than through long series of shadowy and often unconscious refusals. Withdrawing, forgetting, falling out of touch, ignoring or avoiding or withholding the unpretentious but essential details of friendship, destroy more relationships than death or anger and tend to isolate their perpetrators quite early in the solitary confinement of old age. To the Latin adage Qui tacit consentit (‘He who is silent consents’), we might add another, Qui non agit negat (‘He who does not act, denies’)”

To me, at this point in my life, watching episode after episode of “Lost” denies.

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