cleaning up so well (jones_casey) wrote,
cleaning up so well

terms of art

zero world problems

many worlds problem

too many worlds problem

peak tv

peak everything

scarcity of attention

survival of the loudest

fourth dimension problem

eleventh dimension problem

the finite being problem

tl;dr (aka: this entry; aka: most of my entries)

so...not writing very often at lj is one of my fourth dimension problems, and also a zero world problem. and my writing at lj is almost always about zero world problems or just zero world issues. and there's just so much going on in the first world, the second world, the third world, the fourth world, the real world, and the unreal world. where can i find the time to give more to zero world than i already do? in the past when i dedicated more time to zero world it was because there was less going on in my real world.

i certainly didn't coin it (it's virtually (ha!) impossible to coin anything anymore since everything ever written or said in the past ten years plus exists on the internet, along with, gradually, everything written in the past two thousand years) but it's spot on. first world problems are a thing, even if they are just first world problems. but zero world problems aren't even problems that exist. they're problems that we create for ourselves, by our choices, such as by our insistence on an ideal world of inifinite time that might exist but doesn't remotely. if i want to have the time to write at lj then i will. if i choose to do other things with my time, well that's my choice. "i just can't find the time..." no! "i'm unwilling to acknowledge that i'm sacrificing the time in order to give it to something else." much more accurate. zero world problems are fictional problems.

everyone and everything that i encounter lately is talking about a zero world problem that has spawned many first world problems, which is the "too many worlds problem" (i feel like i coined this although i can't be certain of course): there are too many tv shows. there are too many books. there are too many songs. there are too many poems. there are too many poets. there are too many friends. there are too many news items. there are too many sporting events. there are too many people to help. there are too many people to care about. there are too many people to give attention to. yet to paraphrase a tavi gevinson interview from 2014 i randomly watched tonight "we want to consume everything." not everything, everything of course. but everything good, everything worth consuming. and the way that infinity works, just as the infinity of the many 'things' that exist out there contains an infinite amount of bad/worthless things, it also contains an infinite amount of good/worthwhile things. or an infinite amount of great/sublime things. we may not have reached the point yet where we've encountered the infinity of great/sublime things, but we're getting closer and closer at ever greater speeds. and what can finite beings do in the face of infinity? even in the face of near-infinity one begins to be overwhelmed and paralyzed.

examples: gras says (paraphrasing) "do we really need another zombie show?"; my brother-in-law, who doesn't really watch a ton of tv, is over for dinner and in response to a discussion of tv shows says "there's soooooo many shows now"; my best friends from michigan and i can't find a tv show to discuss with each other because we're all watching different things; chuck klosterman, on a podcast, makes the point that he's never ditched or avoided a book for being too short, but he's certainly avoided or discarded books because they were too long; shakespeare, for humor's sake, has lord polonius be the one to point out that "brevity is the soul of wit" (okay, that's not something i encountered lately, but everything is hamlet); some tv critics i listen to, on a podcast, make reference to the ridiculous amount of tv shows, and especially good tv shows, and to the excellent article by alan sepinwall ( from all the way back in 2013, which is a great summation of this problem, but then they also talk about a scarcity of attention which is due to (what i call) peak everything. a person can only devote their limited supply of attention to a limited amount of subjects. but the internet (let's say twitter, for example), allows millions or billions of people each to seek out the attention of millions or billions of people on a daily basis. they all compete. and one has to shut out as much as one can, out of pure necessity.

and thus, in a marketplace of ideas or concepts or expressions, it becomes survival of the loudest rather than survival of the fittest (some would then point out that the loudest are therefore the fittest, but that is its own separate discussion (trump, i will tell you though, is the prime example of why the loudest are not the fittest)); because once our attention is garnered, it can become fixated. and if the loudest are most successful at the initial attention-grabs, then, inevitably, some of these loudest will become the most successful attention-fixators. because as my podcasters also said, there is a sort of effect (sepinwall recently compared it to stockholm syndrome, which is, i think, a little inaccurate): if one begins to become engrossed in or involved with something that is at least reasonably good/worthwhile, inertia makes it so that one tends to continue to stay engrossed, to want to stick with it and see it through.

so of course, because this is all interrelated, this has to do with my prior refusal to get involved with game of thrones. it is, as has been mentioned, a very large, well-crafted world. and there are too many worlds already. i don't need any more worlds. and to avoid stockholm syndromishly getting involved with a merely good but not great tv show, i have to, have to, have to, avoid such from the outset. (contrary to the assertion by klosterman, when i say to people that i listen to most kinds of music, 'except country', i am not posturing, not trying to sound cool; i am setting out my boundaries, my real and necessary boundaries; i have to exclude something! and so i do, i exclude country music.)

but many many of my real world friends have chosen to live in the world of game of thrones. my tv critics of choice work for hbo and therefore are paid to choose to live in the world of game of thrones and talk about it frequently. my zero world friends have chosen to live in the world of game of thrones. it is becoming harder and harder not to visit the world of game of thrones, even if i'll never live there. so it goes.

my apologies for seeking your attention and consuming that which is scarce. but what can a person do?

*too long, didn't watch
*too long, didn't listen
*too much, ignored it
*get the fuck out of my face with that bullshit (
Tags: 1001 1001s, 1001 arabian nights, 1001 books, 1001 films, 1001 movies, 1001 plays, beholden beholders, best of impossible worlds, bewitched bothered bewildered, but i am here!, criticism of criticism, everybody's a critic, everybody's a performer, hamlet, inescapably ineluctably inevitably, lost, philosophy, plays within plays within worlds within , terms of art, too many worlds, what goes up, what happened happened, what never happened happened, why i'm not here

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