Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Train spotting for Grizzlies.

In recent years I've found that the novels I've read and really like are hard work at the beginning and I've learnt that, hopefully, quite quickly though who knows how many really good books I gave up on simply because they were hard work to begin with.

But I'm supposing that if you are taught to write, to make it a way of having a living, then it'd be all about hooking the reader, baiting them right off the bat so they become willing participant in their own catch. So right there is that fishing analogy... with a little side order of clubbing the prey into submission too.

Pop songs too are about hooks and being catchy. Seems just about all our efforts in one way or another allude back to those good ol' days of hunting and gathering. And how long ago was that?

Fifty thousand years ago? Twenty thousand? Sure enough though it was a very, very long time ago and was it such a huge game changer, a complete and utter paradigm shift, that we have so imprinted it upon ourselves that we really have no choice but to look at things that way?

So going back to these books that were really good it was usually a combination of getting my head around the writers set of perspectives whilst often also about setting up a complicated set of circumstances in which the story could unfold. And if that was a form of fishing it would be maybe something like Ice fishing where the set up to even do it in a modicum of comfort required quite a bit of advance planning and setting up and even once all that's done then it wasn't really about catching anything, though I suppose that might be a bonus, so much as a meditative and quiet time to slow things down and percolate in ones own intellectual juices.

Whereas the other extreme end of this fishing thing, this hooking of legless reptiles who still retain their primordial guise, is something like a river when the fish are spawning and some old grizzly bear is just leaning on a rock and swatting the poor tired and half depleted buggers onto a grassy shore.

Now that's done, my own hooks set and cast into the oceans of your relevance I can introduce what I really want to talk about and that's this new programme on channel three “The Housewives of Auckland” and in comparison to Marcus Lush's train spotting epic 'Off the Rails”.

It's not then particulary difficult to define which is ice fishing and which is merely swatting tired spawning fish out of rapids. There is the meditative individual who has worked to secure a place of maybe even a form of worship whilst the other is a big old bear seeing a very easy way to stock up on fat reserves before a big long winter and a vast and easy slumber under the snow.

So yes our brains might be hard wired still in the primordial hunter gatherer vein of how to harvest the natural world and be content and full but surely this technological age we find ourselves in has somewhat abetted the need to store fat reserves for long and hard winters by reaping easily some tired and struggling resource almost at the edges of it's ability to renew it's species?

And thats what 'The Housewives of Auckland” seems to be for me. Big old lazy bears getting fat so they can sleep soundly through the long cold. Moribund network executives unwilling to even try coming up with something interesting and simply importing an idea which is already depleted. And the Salmon, well, they would be those trophy wives and trust fund princesses struggling up the rapids of their own declining physical assets... wooh! Did I say that?

At the very least, within nature, it is spectacle. It is a profound truth of existence in the wilds so when a learned man, say like Attenborough, gives us a commentary... we are moved, we are interested and we are reminded of the stringencies of life to keep struggling on.
But what kind of spectacle is it when the rich and the proud are paraded before us as early evening entertainment? I actually think it's really sad that those big, and very soon to be fat, network executives seem willing to swat struggling salmon onto the grass so we can see them gasping for air as their guts are sprawling alongside them from having their guts ripped open.

The thing is I'd like to see myself as a bit of a renaissance man, that having had vacines and schools and all kinds of technological breakthroughs given to me as convenience, that all this has been quite enlightening and as such I have a willingness to raise the game, as it were, of humanity.

So before I go on with the ripped carcasses of trophy wives and trust fund princesses, which yes, we all still do enjoy a kind of tragic carnage, it's that hunter gatherer brain enjoying the splendours of spring and fall, isn't it somewhat behoove of us to get a little more introspective within our entertainments, to embrace a little more, actually a whole lot more, the character of our species aligning ourselves with the possibilities we do have as we fall, supposedly, into this new age of information?

Could we please acknowledge that train spotting of the technological soul might be better entertainments?

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