Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Leave My Mind Alone

In an almost unbelievably prescient scene from The Man Who Fell to Earth, the alien watches 12 tv screens at once, gorging willingly on the visual and aural input until he cannot stand it any longer, and shouts into the overwhelming din, "get out of my mind, all of you! Leave my mind alone!"

These words come to me all the time.   All the time. The bank of fat homely tube t.v.s, so different in their analog nostalgia from my smooth flat little phone, nevertheless deliver the same nightmarish onslaught of arbitrary information.  Other people's photos.  Other people's lives.  Their dinners their politics their purchases their angers hurts fears.  All of music ever.  All of art, science, human tragedy.  Recipes.  Memes.  Hatred.  Bigotry.  Funny dogs.  The dress I want, the shoes my girl wants, Anne Frank quotes, the answer to the question "what movie featured Donald O'Connor on roller skates?" Limitless stores of pettiness and profundity, all piling up in my fragile suggestible mind, edging out me.

The Alien had a reason for staring at the 12 t.v.s.  He was trying to learn about what it means to be human.  I don't know why I do it, is it empty compulsion, is it just like the Tetris bricks that fell in that inexorable way, ultimately even in my dreams? Or is it meaningful compulsion, a way to drown out the noise of personal terror with the noise of a thousand other voices not my own?

...what will happen if they leave my mind alone?


Ms Scarlet said...

I've developed Tinnitus, and using my iPad or mobile phone exacerbate it - I have no idea why - but I put the internet down in the evening, mostly. It's really nice to have some of my head back.... well, the bit that isn't filled with constant hissing! Maybe the internet fried my brain?!!
Nice to see you here, Leah.

DUTA said...

I seldom watch TV, and on the internet I do quiet, focused work.
"Leave my mind alone" is a very relevant demand in our modern times.

Leah said...

Hi lovely! I have tinnitus too, a weird kind called pulsatile tinnitus. Stress exacerbates it, I think! Damn the internet... ❤️

Ms Scarlet said...

Yep, my tinnitus was caused by stress, apparently. I updated my iPhone yesterday....and now my ears are piercing me! The update didn't go well.