Thanksgiving Is Ruined

The Personal is Political. The Political is Personal.

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March 21, 2007
Reviewing the Basics

Today's topic: the development of a "trained eye"

Hypothetical: You pride yourself on your ability to appreciate angst in life.

However, you find that as years go by, your tastes change.

For example, the comparative difference might appear as follows:

      then      now
favorite film"Blue Velvet"
"Taxi Driver"
Warhol's "Empire"
favorite paintingsMunch's "Scream"Agnes Martin
favorite reading materialBukowski
Vermont Country Store catalog
favorite musicNine Inch Nails
Marilyn Manson
André Rieu
The Wiggles

Question: Does not the above change mean that you've gone mellow? Lost your edge? Outgrown your capacity to appreciate angst? Betrayed yourself?

Answer: Not necessarily.

On the contrary, you may have developed a trained, keen and constant eye for detection of angst to an extent sufficiently advanced that you now are able to detect it in places where most others, and even your previous self, would have found it nigh impossible. You may even find that you take delight in the search, in discovery of the almost hidden, sparkling grains of angst, rather than placement of higher value on the variety that marches directly up to you and hits you over the head.

Or, worse, you may find that you now see angst everywhere, whether you want to or not. The object on which you gaze has become irrelevant. You see angst crawling over every surface. Even when you desperately want to, you cannot stop seeing it.

Or should the preceding paragraph have begun, "Or, better"?