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Please Justify Your Existence, Hollywood

Why do we need cameras and producers and CGI, when one person can set a story to music and make people cry using nothing but sand?

Addendum: To preempt the inevitable comment: yes, I do recognize the irony in using a performance for a highly produced television franchise that I found on the Web's largest video repository as evidence that we don't need technology to be entertained.


World Enough and Time

My friend Albert's recent blog post about Andrew Marvell's "To His Coy Mistress" has me ruminating on that poem a lot lately. Albert focuses his explication on the enigmatically beautiful phrase "vegetable love." Yet it's that poem's first line, "Had we but world enough, and time," that still gets me.

Has there ever been a more concise, universal statement of longing?

Marvell specifically addresses a longing erotic in nature, but his hypothetical construction could be a prelude to any human passion. It is why we chase youth and money, technology and entertainment, fame and status—all things that represent control over some inexorable force.

Youth stalls time's yardstick, age. Fame enables our names to live, thus cheating time's ultimate arbiter, death. Money, status, and entertainment offer us "world enough," whether that means consumption or leisure. And, of course, technology buys us the illusion of both time and world. After all, technology saves us time and allows us to be virtually in multiple places at once.

Of course, such pursuits ultimately prove fruitless. We know this objectively, yet we pursue anyway. But we can't be blamed for this drive. It's something we struggle with today. It's something Marvell recognized 400 years ago.

However, I can't help think that the world would be somehow better if we could just recognize that world enough might be the ground we can cover with our own legs. And time enough might be living each moment in a manner meaningful to us yet mindful of others. And both could be achieved in those instants when we give over some gift of ourselves, to either a lover or a stranger, in whatever capacity we have to give, with no expectation of reciprocation yet complete surprise and delight when that gift is returned.


The World Actually IS Flat

The Internet has an end point. Who knew?