Thursday, 26 April 2012

Reflect On This

Paris iPhone Photo Chronicles
~ Reflect On This ~

Reflect On This, originally uploaded by Paris Set Me Free.

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If I asked you what we're looking at here, I'd hazard a guess that quite a few of you would propose... well, what would you say?

And I'd say you were wrong. How far from reality could you get whilst believing you were actually in a Parisian metro station (St. Ambroise, to be precise, and let's be quite precise about our irreality, right?) seeing a girl being reflected in a mirror being peeked at by a shadowy figure in a stairwell.

So wrong. We're all actually looking at a bit of luminescent plastic called a screen. No?

Which got me to thinking about how far from honest to goodness reality we've actually wandered, this good species of ours, in the last few decades. Talking into pieces of hollow Bakelite. 'Listening' to vibrating cones which make us laugh or cry. And above all, having our emotions piqued by shiny bits of plastic, or glass or canvas of some sort or other. None of it 'real', as it were.

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How many hours do you, or people you know, spend 'glued to the box', as we used to say. These days maybe it's an even more extreme form of irreality we indulge in, where we really do believe (almost) we're driving that racecar, thrashing Nadal or, most popular and fun of all, killing vast numbers of people in the most inventively horrifying ways possible. All in the name of good clean fun. Because we can't actually 'do it' in 'reality'.

Is reality such an awful thing? It would seem so for a lot of us. Although we might argue that watching TV or being immersed in Second Life or World of Warcraft is the new reality.

It's soap operas which depress me the most. Living other people's misery like it's our own. That and the slew of gory murder series you get all evening, every evening on more than one handy channel in the comfort of your own 'living' room.

I'm as guilty as anyone of living a virtual reality, and maybe even a virtual life.

I kid myself that I'm 'communicating' with people as I type these words, whereas, to extend my own point, all I'm doing is hitting a set of plastic clickety-clack buttons on a 'keyboard' in a certain order with my fingers and talking to myself about my thoughts. There ain't no-one 'hearing' them at the same time as me. Maybe no-one ever will. But then again someone just might. And think they're actually on the platform at St. Ambroise metro station in Paris looking at a strangely reflected reality (look closely if you dare) of sorts and imagine themselves 'there', wherever 'there' is. In which case, nice you could join me. I'll maybe meet you down 'there' sometime.

And why not...
© 2012 
Sab Will / Paris Set Me Free - Contact me directly for photo tours, interviews, exhibitions, etc.

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