Sometimes after I spend some time immersed in someone else’s words (reading, people, reading.) I find it hard to avoid mimicry. This is strange to me because I do not do the Madonna accent thing – ever. Though I have been made aware that my accent changes. Everyone talked about how I over annunciated when I came back from Asia. No shit? That doesn’t make sense to you? Then you should go to Asia. Or more likely not. When I went to Europe on my own for the first time everyone “over there” said they knew I was not only American but Californian. A guy from some other English-speaking place said he knew I was Californian because we are the only people who simultaneously stretch each word out while speaking ridiculously fast. I found that an interesting, accurate and impressive observation. Today I would explain it more simply by saying hypno-diction and hyper-syntax. Or something like that.
This also makes me remember when my entire household was so completely addicted to Tetris that it began to color how we drove, moved… hell, those pieces were permanently falling in my (drug-free… ish) field of vision. It became an element of lifestyle. That happens to me when I read sometimes… I try on these other lifestyles. It is weird to write about it because it is not something I would normally do out loud – or, like, outside of my head. I don’t think. But right now I am acutely aware that I am doing it. This whole little diatribe is quite in the vein of something else I have been reading and I cannot even stop myself from writing this way. I wonder if it reads differently to the people who know me and read this blog normally. Is it plagiarism, do you think? And then that makes me think of a line from my current favorite Noah and the Whale song:
Look at me, calling myself a writer and shit.
But Tetris was the shit, wasn’t it? I love how all of the squares make that cool sound when they land. I was reminded of Tetris earlier today for a totally different reason, which was that I had my television on and as most people know, I am quite likely the shittiest television watcher ever. It find it impossible to stay focused and can’t share the clicker because I am constantly… clicking. There isn’t anything on T.V. anyhow, save for Law & Order of like ten thousand varieties and decades, and now the same could be said of derivative CSIs. Not that I am here to judge. I have tried to find a news program to watch in the morning when I get ready for work because it seems like it is helpful to know about the weather and what the hell is wrong with Bart on any given day. But that whole Sisyphean effort has just really brought out my masochistic tendencies because the Bay Area morning news is seriously so bad it is offensive. I have given up trying to find a good program and have chosen to settle on what is categorically the worst: NBC.
Seriously, they regularly completely enrage me before 6:30 a.m. with their stupidity, vapidity, and often totally inappropriate commentary. It is more energizing than coffee. There was a husband and wife team for a while who constantly talked about how they had triplets, but now the Mr. is gone leaving the Mrs. with the guy I would say is the dullest tool in the shed (yes, Jon Kelly, I mean you), except for they have Christina Loren doing the weather, so there is not really any more room in that category. The jokes are bad, the news is useless and the weather is often wrong. I can’t really comment on the traffic guy because I take Bart, I like his name though, Inouye has gravitas. The Guy-in-the-field Bob Reddell, reminds me of Harry Dunne, and I do not mean Jeff Daniels, I really mean Harry Dunne. The tech guy is so patently conservative and anti-Obama he could make the lost iPhone prototype at Cava-22 the fault of the current administration.
Recently, in my effort to watch anything for more than twenty minutes (aside from baseball or basketball) I even tried to watch the Emmy’s. Talk about useless. I didn’t know anyone on that program. But it got me thinking about some shows I should try to watch, so I made a list. And when I sat down to watch them grading papers became more engaging. Perhaps I shouldn’t have started with Ashton Kutcher’s debut on Two and a Half Men.
In the midst of this predicament, which I am sure makes me un-American somehow, I clicked over to the TV Guide channel. And I watched it. For a really long time. I finally found a channel I like to watch. It doesn’t matter what the audio situation is, I tune it out. There is something one hundred percent satisfying about those blue squares that fit perfectly together and just scroll up your screen. Some are green (sports!) some are purple (movies!) and they are all there, all the time, fitting together seamlessly. All that potential and I never have to ruin it by actually watching any of it. I can just know what is there and what is coming up and how it fits in the schedule and there is even occasionally a gap in the programming.
Just like Tetris.
I finally found a home.