Wooden wife stuff – get back in the closet dude!

Ned And Teagan

Ned Nefer Takes His Mannequin-Wife Teagan On New York Walking Tour

People may not be any stranger today than any other time in history, but our lives today are increasingly more public.  Once we could have only know strange things about our neighbors, not people across town and certainly not across the country.  In my grandfather’s time a man (or woman) could disguise much of what they thought or did with little effort – you could keep almost anything, if not in a closet, at least behind a locked front door.  By the time my grandfather  died in 1969 the world had already changed dramatically, but not his life; my grandfather did not have a car, he had one in his life, his youngest son wrecked it in the 1940s.  He had never learned to drive well or feel comfortable driving so he never replaced it.  My grandfather listened to the radio once a day to hear the farm report and early morning news and he read one daily newspaper.  During the winter he read feed, chicken and seed catalogs, but those catalogs, a newspaper and the radio were about his only contact with the world outside of Carson City, Nevada and the only technology he used.  There was a telephone in the house, but no one used it and just two other electronic devices, a washing machine and refrigerator.

Today’s world is very different, not only do we have hundreds of other electronic devices to asset us and connect us to the outside world, many of the devices we use have a reverse effect.  That is besides connecting us to the world, they connect the world to us; as poor Congressman Weiner discovered.  His electronic communication devices allowed him to talk constantly with the world around him, share his thoughts and his images it what now appears to have been a constant stream of dribble; but what he forgot was the reverse affect.  The rest of world, not just his intended audience could also follow his conversations, listen to his thoughts and see his images.

That ubiquitous connection is simply a part of life and it provides a stream of information that we can access  It means we can get news updates from the streets of Cairo, twitter comments from NBA players during the course of a game, afterward from locker room or just wandering around a city and recording his impressions and other direct from the source stream of information and images.  The internet news sources are bombarded with a constant stream of the “stuff.”  It is stuff and certainly not news, but because there is so much of it so readily available websites use it as hooks to attract our attention, cursors and clicks.

Advertisers online want more that just a passing glance, they want a click.  They want you to click through to the advertiser’s page and they reward the website when you do.  That gives the website an incentive to catch your eye; they do that with the “stuff’ that today’s technology is constantly generating; an interview with the former governor of California’s maid, a picture of a naked Congressman at the gym, movie stars in bikinis, dead bodies, plane crashing, tsunamis hitting the beach and idiots with their wooden wives.   More than anything else in today’s world stories like this one would dumbfound my grandfather.   What does it say about us, not about him; let him do as he will, but why should the rest of us be subjected to his tale of stupidity as if were news?  And a short note to my family – it could be worse, I could take my roommates out in public!


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