Maybe it is writer’s block, but the blog posts haven’t been skipping out of me this week.
We have finished reading Macbeth! On one day I read Act 5 three times. It gave me a headache but got me thinking about personal responsibility and blame. Macbeth turns into quite an existentialist towards the end. He can’t really see the connection between his actions and the mess Scotland is in. Seems a bit like George Bush. I have no sympathy for W, yet for Macbeth, the jury is still out. I am amazed how many of my students actually feel sorry for him, despite him being a murderous tyrant. Yet when I mentioned we are going to see the Polanski film version and I told them a bit about Roman’s life they all immediately judged him. Statutory rape vs Murder. Easy.
A lot of what makes us so judgmental and opinionated is the Media. Once we wake up and recognize how constructed and manipulated we are we start to buy back our own views. In my Media class we are looking at advertisements and how products are targeted to us. Very good stuff.
On the other hand, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about collecting people. It’s something I tend to do. When we moved here I told all my friends at home that “No, I won’t make any friends, I am closed, finished, done. No room for more people!” They all laughed. I haven’t done that badly, I have made a few wonderful friends that I will cherish long after we leave but I have safely put up some armour. Moving so much makes it hard. We spend a lot of time saying goodbye. Sometimes I wonder what those people I spent weeks laughing with in 1998 are doing now. But why does it matter? As we pass through life we enjoy some people and then move on. We can’t possibly collect them all. And yet I do collect a lot and I work very hard at staying in touch with people. Facebook is a blessing in this regard. I am able to stay connected to past students and work colleagues, but it is minimal contact.
There is some competitive aspect to Facebook. “How many friends do you have”? “I just hit 100!!”
I am starting to go in the other direction and this week I started to delete people. Maybe it is my aversion to clutter and chaos but if I don’t want to drink coffee with these people then why do I want to be facebook “friends” with them? I would hate to be like one of my students who has 860 friends. That is not friendship that is building a collection.