Thursday, December 31, 2009
New Years' Resolution: Get on the Road and Away from Watching TV!
Hi folks -- currently I am doing quite a bit of reading as I am structuring ideas for my next book. What follows is important for all of us, as it points to the matter of why TV is such a bad thing in our lives and why we must get off the couch, on to the road, and experience living. We all are running out of time.
As a point of reference Andre Codrescu's Raod Scholar was made into a film in the mid-1990s. The book followed, and is better than the film. Codescu as an immigrant who came to America in 1966 from Romania, the author thinks he knows more about America than he really does. To be fair, Codrescu has a number of remarkable insights, but one must be wary of taking the lot of them for the truth. Of course, who has the entire truth about the U.S., its manners, customs, and people?
An Important Quote from Codrescu's Road Scholar,
The road is a metaphor factory. It spews poetry, songs, maxims, homilies, quips, stupidities, and profundities. Everyone knows that life is a journey and time is a a road. Everyone knows that. Babies, who travel a piece to get here , know that. They journey into the world via the meta-road. They wear sunglasses and drive tiny cars made of light beams. Life is a road and cliche factory. It's the source of practically everything we humans try to tell ourselves about ourselves. You look like a mile of bad road. You've taken the road less traveled.
I haven't driven far yet.
The road is everything except for one thing -- real. You can say everything you want about the road, and you do. You might even live your life using road metaphors every day to get you to work and back, but the sad fact is there is no road. The last time there was a road was in the sixties. We had a road back then because Neal Cassady like to drive, Jack Kerouac liked to write, and everyone wanted to leave home. So all at once for a bout ten years young people discovered the infrastructure at the very same moment that they saw their won arteries and veins with the blood rushing through them all lit up. The infrastructure all neon -lit and gas- station- neoned throbbed briefly with all these young Americans with lit veins and arteries rushing along its highways and byways. These lit infusions were driven along by sounds they themselves made singing of the roads they rode on.
And when they stopped moving, sometime in the late seventies, there was this big store of raod lore floating in the pyscho-sphere. It's where the Reagan-Bush decades went shopping for images to get people off the road and into schools, homes, corner offices, prisons, and mental institutions. Which is where we all live now.
Roads aren't real anymore. All roads are now metaphors about the road. Most people would rather stay home. In their homes they feed on lots of cliches about the road so that they won't feel as if they've stopped moving. Only the dead stop moving and most people don't want to be dead. Every couch potato dreams himself or herself on the road, and they are, thanks to TV, which gives them the illusion that they are somewhere else. Everyone lives on TV now, which is everywhere and no where....When TV travelers do travel they go to places they've seen on TV, straight into the tourist postcards and never see what they haven't already seen at home. If they stumble on something that 's never been on TV they shoot it with the video camera and then it's on TV. They go from postcard to postcard by plane so they never touch the road.