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Sunday, August 19, 2012

Sunday Break From Politics

(If you must have politics, please scroll down. I have two posts today, and the post below this one is political)

First, this film (hat tip to Farmer's Letters):

Excerpt from this recent article in Newsweek:
Is the Web Driving Us Mad?

Tweets, texts, emails, posts. New research says the Internet can make us lonely and depressed—and may even create more extreme forms of mental illness, Tony Dokoupil reports.

...In the summer of 1996, seven young researchers at MIT blurred the lines between man and computer, living simultaneously in the physical and virtual worlds. They carried keyboards in their pockets, radio-transmitters in their backpacks, and a clip-on screen in front of their eyes. They called themselves “cyborgs”—and they were freaks. But as Sherry Turkle, a psychologist at MIT, points out, “we are all cyborgs now.” This life of continuous connection has come to seem normal, but that’s not the same as saying that it’s healthy or sustainable, as technology—to paraphrase the old line about alcohol—becomes the cause of and solution to of all life’s problems....
Read the entire article HERE.

I am reminded of The Twilight Zone, particularly the episode "Fever," written by Rod Serling. "Fever" first aired on January 29, 1960.  Excerpt from that episode (apologies for the poor quality of the video):

Also see Wikipedia's summary of "Fever."

Factoid: Everett Sloane, the lead actor in this episode of The Twilight Zone, committed suicide a few months after the episode aired.


  1. ...and I am reminded of E.L. Forester's, "the Machine Stops" as we communicate today.... ;)

    Thanks for the h/t"

  2. Love the elegant, elaborate animated silhouettes! The synthesized music is "nice," but a bit too "New Age" for my tastes.

    Reminiscent of the silhouetted animation for Leos Janacek's "The Cunning Little Vixen."

    Have you ever seen that?

    Absolutely charming, beguiling and endearing!

  3. The Machine Stops by E, M. Forster (1909) is my favorite reference for futuristic dystopian prophecy that came true.

    When all this network of connection finally breaks down of its own ever-increasing weight and complexity, those of us who have grown to depend on it too much will suffer horribly.

    If my eyesight would permit me to read old-fashioned printed matter with ease, you would hardly see me for dust.

    ~ FT

  4. Have you ever experienced the animated video of Sibelius' Valse Triste featuring a charmingly wistful feline who inhabits a spooky abandoned house?

    I'll try to find it, and post it soon. It's wonderfully evocative. It will haunt you, and raise your sympathies, but will not cheer you up.

    That's fine. Contemplative sadness and empathy are part of life. An attempt to avoid confronting this aspect of reality results in an atmosphere of forced, false good cheer. Horrible!

    ~ FT

  5. FT,
    I grew up on The Twilight Zone. Perhaps for that reason, this animated short appeals to me.

    Now, about the music....Yes, it is quite New Age. I can take that kind of music in short bursts, when I get massage therapy, and to lull me to sleep on the rare occasions when I have insomnia. Classical and rock music will not put me to sleep, the former because I'm analyzing as I listen and the latter because it is too rousing (for lack of a better word).

    I'll look up the E.M. Forster story. Truth be told, I've read very little of E.M. Forster.

  6. FT,
    Have you ever experienced the animated video of Sibelius' Valse Triste...?

    No, but I'm familiar with the music.


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