Here Thar Be Monsters!

From the other side of the argument to the other side of the planet, read in over 149 countries and 17 languages. We bring you news and opinion with an IndoTex® flavor. Be sure to check out Radio Far Side. Send thoughts and comments to luap.jkt at gmail, and tell all your friends. Sampai jumpa, y'all.


Millions Unite For A Cause


31 million viewers x 3 hours = 93 MILLION man-hours

Plus the network time with hundreds of folks to set up and run the thing across the country, plus a couple of hundred journalists pumping out thousands of column inches, plus ticket sales plus ancillary sales plus plus plus

All for one football game...

Imagine what all that effort could have achieved if it were focused on, oh, I don't know...the ECONOMY, SOCIAL PROBLEMS, ELECTING DECENT PEOPLE TO OFFICE?

93 million man-hours.

What's the bet it didn't take that much effort to build the Great Pyramid or the Great Wall of China?  I know it didn't take that much to build the space station or put men on the Moon.  And all of it literally pissed away on a football game.

It's astounding, really.

At some point, probably next week, though I'm not sure, this will all culminate in something called the Super Bowl, which despite the name, does not involve feeding hungry people.  Nope.  Even more time and energy and effort will be pissed away on yet another football game.

With that kind of waste, one could easily say that America deserves everything that's coming at it.  That a nation could waste such vast amounts of time and resources on something as trivial as a bunch of pituitary cases slamming each other into the ground boggles the mind.  It can only mean that every person that still has a house to live in was watching the game, and if not, they were watching something even more insipid (if that's even possible) called the Miss Something-or-other Silicone and Botox Showcase.

It's maddening, really.  Our entire civilization is crumbling around us and all people can do is plant their fat, drunken asses on a couch and completely zone out, stirring only to empty the bladder and refill it.  Nero Agrippa would be so proud to see that modern Caesars have perfected the bread and circuses.  People spent more time this weekend worrying whether that was a fair catch, than whether the legal system is fair.  They spent inordinate amounts of time worrying about a penalty call on their favorite piles of meat, than cops killing 8th graders.  They spent gobs more time worrying about the quarterback's passing record than Bammy's human rights record.

Dear God, do us all a favor and bring on the Second Coming.  There's little left of human compassion and higher reasoning and high culture down here.

A big part of the problem with America was highlighted by a friend a while back who went home for a visit.  You see, here in Indonesia, everyone spends their time outside visitng with neighbors, doing chores, playing in the park.  Everyone knows their neighbors (which can be a blessing and curse, really).  But back home, he said, the streets were virtually deserted.  Not anything unusual, just the normal course of things.  No one goes outside.  There's little or no social interaction.  People lock themselves in gilded prisons and suck up electrons.  If it doesn't plug in, it isn't real.  And that goes for everything from cooking to sex.

The west has completely lost it.  Folks not only can't distinguish between reality and cyber worlds, they can't properly prioritize anything any more.  When a nation invests 93 MILLION man-hours in a game, but can't lift a finger to fight injustice, creeping dictatorships and a dying economy, then they really don't deserve anything better.

Don't get me wrong, it ain't all peaches and cream in the east, either.  Over here it's Korean boy/girl bands and anime hair styles and gaudy consumerism is slowly sliding in to cultures that have never really had thriving middle classes.  It's still in the nascent stages here and there's time to stop it, but I'm not holding my breath.  The Madison Ave a$$holes have made a fine art out of getting you to buy crap you don't need to project images to people who don't care to achieve status that means nothing.

I've known multi-millionaires who live in humble houses and drive used cars, and I've known credit card queens who live like Solomon in all his glory, but own nothing.  The happy ones are always the humble ones.  They don't worry about a lot of hooey to impress people who don't care.

The Romans perfected an architectural technique called facadeism.  In fact, Indonesians are pretty good at it too.  They could sculpt anything from concrete.  You could live in a cardboard shack, but the front would look like the pharaoh's summer house.  It's more commonly called making silk purses from sow's ears.  That is Madicon Ave in a nutshell.

I crave the day when I see a headline like, "TeeVee viewership at all-time lows!"  But somehow, I don't think that will happen in my lifetime.  That people waste so much time on such a passive occupation in a zombie-like state is very telling of our society today.  It's almost comical how many people do solitary things en masse.  The sheer lunacy of it all would have me rolling on the floor laughing if the world weren't in such a state of affairs.

What will it take to get folks to focus that much attention on something that matters?  I'm rather afraid of the answer.

93 MILLION man-hours.


No comments:

Post a Comment

Feel free to leave your own view of The Far Side.