Have a [ . . . ] Day

September 02, 2004

Image Hosted by ImageShack.usToday I made the mistake of turning on the news as my coffee was dripping rather than waiting until after I had been fortified by caffeine. In a pre-caffeinated state I am less able to maintain my normal steely vigilance over my emotions and I am fragile and impressionable. This is why I should know better than to watch the news in such a condition: the news is not about information; it's about provocation.

It first I was treated to action shots of panic-stricken Russian mothers. I can never know exactly what they are going through right now. I extend as much sympathy as I possibly can. However, showing weeping hysteria does nothing to educate me on the matter, inform my opinion, or challenge me to think up solutions. It merely serves as entertainment, like in that movie I saw a promo for where Kim Bassinger's kid is abducted and she spends the whole time screaming and crying. Poor Kim! Pass the popcorn.

Image Hosted by ImageShack.usNext, there was a discussion around the potential banning of pit bulls. Instead of showing the interviewees and a few stock shots of pit bulls, the screen shot for almost the entire story was a night vision shot of paramedics clustered around last weekends horrific pit bull attack. As a bonus, they left the sound of this oh-so-informative shot on so that as the eggheads babbled self-importantly back and forth, I was therefore treated to the screams of agony of the victim whose life has been changed forever. Is that real butter or oil on the popcorn?

I need to know that Chechen rebels are holding hundreds of schoolchildren hostage. I need to know that there was yet another pit bull attack (a two-minute walk from my place, no less). I should be informed so I have at least a clue about the ways of the world. I resent newsmakers underestimating me, telling me that I am too stupid to expect them to appeal to my intellect, that I am just stupid enough for them to entertainment and make me feel smart because I watched the news and now I know. I think the general public is smarter than that and is capable of greatness when provided the right tools. Now I know that mothers cry when their children are in danger and that pit bull attacks cause intense physical anguish. And I also know that reporters have their brains liposuctioned out to get their jobs.

I came to the swift conclusion that Saturday's birthday is enough horror for me for the week. I turned the news off and retreated into my little fantasy world in which four of my husbands (pictures below) made me breakfast in bed, all children are safe, and pit bulls' teeth are made of cotton candy.

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posted by GreyGuy on 2.9.04 | Permalink |

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