Originally posted by Skyfloating
I must add though...after a century of watching villians exploding buildings and attacking cities in hollywood movies, after paying for these
movies, supporting them, watching them with fascination and glee, wishing for more action, more explosions, more, more, more...we didnt expect the
real thing to feel this bad, did we?
For us, the disasters always happened in far off, distant countries and were things we could watch on the News while eating Popcorn. I think it was
quite a wake-up call for it to happen right at our doorstep. A wake-up call to more awareness, more care and to be more alert.
Once again another member's perspective has brought up a very valid viewpoint on this issue. Undoubtably, as we grow we get increasingly numb to
violence and suffering, though you wouldn't know it from this thread. And television is a major influence in this regard. But something
said triggered a "new" memory in me, in fact one which gas never occurred to me before.
My wife woke me up when the first plane hit, that in itself is a thread topic. How do you react to news like that coming from a dream state? So we
walk the 50 yards to West Street with all the people and chaos, then we see the second plane, you know the rest...
Over the couple of weeks that followed, our life in practical terms was as follows.
Tracking down lost friends and neighbors, watching local/national news at all times, supporting the EMT guys/workers etc. on West Street with whatever
they needed. Basically the stuff that EVERYONE was doing.
My point is this. There was something very surreal and very difficult for the brain to process about the continuous alternate back and forth from the
street to the apartment. I guess the best way to describe it is, imagine if a massive UFO landed on earth and in your neighborhood, and it was world
news, but you are having coffee with the aliens. It's a little like that, just in a much more terrible and gut wrenching way.
Our brains are not really built to cope with these alternating realities, the one on tv and the one on your doorstep, in such close proximity.
Especially when these realities are so extreme. You end up watching tv and the news as a different person that the one walking the streets. It is a
massive drain on the brain and the emotions because in effect you are living this through two identities, both audience and participant.
I remember when I was in high school I wrote a story about the dissociative nature of television. A simple story based on an inner city couple who
gets so caught up in watching the news of a massive fire in their city, such is their focus, that they don't realize that that same fire is nearing
them, and eventually get consumed by that very fire.
So these days, when I look back I carry with me two sets of memories.
And I think it is the "participant" in me who gets hit when this time of year comes around. Paradoxically it is the tv documentaries or memorials
that trigger this. And it is the dissociative "audience" in me which allows me to talk to you guys about this freely.
I have no idea if I described this well enough.