Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Once more unto the iPhone, dear friends

 Story resides like an illegal squatter in the interstices between opposing views.  It flourishes when the debate is waged within you, each side raising its voice and rhetorical stratagems, rowdy, seedy politicians wanting your vote, your loyalty, your campaign contributions.

How many times have you been torn between poles in some argument that seemed so important, so vital to your well being and moral choice?  You have lost count.  These doctrinal arguments waging within you are more often forgotten than resolved.  Sometimes your memories carry you back to moments, times in the past where such arguments flared, leaving you with the picture of you impaled, helpless, ridiculous to yourself.  One such time reminds you of the ridiculousness.  You were still living in Los Angeles, for some reason walking almost due south along Crescent Heights Boulevard, about to cross Pico Boulevard, your destination some six or eight blocks south south east toward the apartment of a then girlfriend.  You were carrying a full-length mirror which you'd intended to give said girlfriend although you had not consulted her about her desire for such a mirror.  For every two blocks you walked south, you retreated at least one, your frustration progressing as you perceived silliness of vector rather than appreciation of purpose.  You'd long since forgotten the mechanics of the circumstances of your decision to take that particular mirror to that particular person.

How many times have you had such inner arguments, acting them out in some such Laurel and Hardy demonstration?  How is it that you still have such inner debates over matters of no lasting consequence or direction? It all devolves to your multiple personality vision of yourself and, of course, of others, extending well into your vision of your characters.

Today, thanks to contemporary telephonic and electronic devices, it is possible to see otherwise sane-appearing individuals having such arguments with other persons on a cell telephone, unless they happen to be truer to the multiple personality diagnosis.  You do not always know.  Yesterday, you were drinking afternoon coffee at a coffee shop, watching what you were certain was an example of a non-telephonic argument or at least conversation being waged by an individual in the outside parking lot.  He appeared to you to be growing more agitated as he marched about, waving his arms.  The more you watched, the more your certainty of his beyond conventional behavior increased to the point where you recalled his at one point being asked to leave the shop because he was disturbing customers.    He entered the coffee shop, ordered another coffee, then gratuitously attempted to engage other customers in conversation, convincing you of the severity if not accuracy of your diagnosis.  But then, his cell phone rang, whereupon he began directing his agitation to the telephone and the person at the other end of the connection, proving, you guess, that today it is possible for disturbed individuals to have cell phones, extending the potential for arguing and ranting with and at yet other dimensions.

It is surreal to argue with yourself, but the equation is advanced at least exponentially by the cell phone, which has become in its way an aspect of you with aps or applications from the application store but also units of argumentation and suspicion from the source of story--you.

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