Tuesday, November 22, 2011

"Escape" and the real world

I like books, also movies and tv shows.  I like books the most because they offer the widest range of choices.  You can see why they tend to be cheaper, too.  Paper books require authors, editors, sales personnel, etc but the number seems small compared to the crews and technicians listed for the credits of a movie.

I spend lots of time reading and much of that reading is about books: what's good, what's just out, what is valuable but overlooked, and that sort of thing.  Often, in discussions of books, especially fiction or drama or humor, someone will say a piece is a good one for escape.  They refer to a trance, frequently a delicious one, where the mind is so occupied with the story or the tension or suspense, that one's surroundings have sunk out of the conscious mind.  At that time, we refer to the reader as having escaped from the real world.  Movies, especially in the traditional darkened theater have an even stronger effect on me.  Ever since I was a kid, I have needed a few minutes outside the theater, walking around, to shake off the impression I was Hopalong Cassidy or some other magnificent hero.

With this post, I am making a plea for understanding that the ideas and effect of that trance are part of the real world.  Likewise, the mathematician or the theoretical physicist and their lofty ideas are in the real world.  When a 5th grader is trying to visualize the product of 19 times 23, he is in the real world, as is that product.  I don't want to enter into some complicated discussion of the reality v. non-reality of mathematical entities or mythological concepts such as unicorns.  But it does seem a better picture of what we are about on this spinning ball if we take our imaginations to be real, as my plan to travel is real and makes me buy a ticket and pack a bag.

In this age of invention and innovation, of criticism and investigation, we might as well include our thoughts and mental constructions among the things we respect.

Main blog: Fear, Fun and Filoz
Main web site: Kirbyvariety

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