February 4th, 2008

Woozy

It's all just a matter of where you draw the line

I bought some carpet cleaner at the drugstore on my way to work yesterday (why must cats vomit so often?), and it somehow became unscrewed, getting all over the rest of my stuff. I ended up throwing out a half-eaten bag of Goldfish crackers, even though I don't think any of the cleaner actually got into it. So, yeah, that sucked, but it didn't do as much damage as I might have feared.

As an extension of the idea of rivalries that I mentioned in a previous post, I know I've talked before about the idea of separating the artist from the art, which typically strikes me as a good idea. If someone whose religious or political views aren't in accordance with mine has created something I like, why should I let those personal beliefs get in the way of my enjoyment? It only really becomes an issue if their beliefs so permeate their work as to get annoying. But I have to wonder where the cut-off is, and I can't say I have a good answer. I can argue that L. Frank Baum's call for genocide of Native Americans has to be seen in the context of the time, and weighed against his then-progressive beliefs in other areas. But would I make the same excuses for a modern author with such a skeleton in his or her closet? I tend to think I wouldn't, but who knows? Even today, calls for genocide are not uncommon, but have any of the people making them produced anything entertaining (in a non-ironic manner, that is)? And what if an artist I like ends up committing murder, or some other heinous crime? It's an interesting question, and I'd welcome any input anyone reading this (assuming there is anyone) might have.

Also, I'll mention that I watched a little bit of Fox's latest stupid idea for a game show, where the contestants have to answer questions while hooked up to a lie detector (I forget what it's called; I keep thinking To Tell the Truth, but I know that's a totally different game show). While bashing this sort of a show is kind of like pointing out how wet the ocean is, I'll go ahead and make these three points:

1. Lie detectors are not known for being very reliable. Whether or not the contestants win anything is totally at the discretion of a faulty instrument.
2. Some of the questions asked include some gray areas. One of the ones I saw was, "Would you trust your best friend with your savings account?" Couldn't the answer to this vary depending on a person's mood at the time, and hence not really have a true answer?
3. There are so many long pauses. Whatever executive came up with that idea probably would insist that this is to build up suspense, but I think it's really just to fill up time. I think it's all leading to a day when game shows have only one question each, but are somehow drawn out to fit hour-long time slots.

Thank you, and good night. Wait, it's actually morning, isn't it? Thank you, and good morning.