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Thursday, December 03, 2009

Back in the Saddle

You know, there's something invigorating about being intellectually stimulated.

Okay, yes, not exactly a world-shattering observation on my part... but man... the Smithsonian was good to me.

Honestly, this CRTC stuff has made me feel, well, numb.

Watching this fight unfold and trying to fit so many square concepts into the roundness of my consciousness... well, it's been a tiring bit of work to hammer them all through.

Even my sturdy ol' "actually giving a damn" filter has started to get a bit clogged by it all as of late -- I can't even imagine how those who've been fighting this battle for a decade or so must feel.

Simply put, my trip to the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum was a revelation.

I was surprised to discover just how deeply nourishing it is to be dwarfed by SkyLab and the Hubble Telescope (replica) -- to stare at these things in awe and wonder; to run my fingers along the atmosphere-seared hull of the Apollo II; or caress the cold steel of a rocket engine's massive exhaust vents.

I stood there, surrounded by these aging relics of possibility and it felt... expansive; Like touching the jagged wheels of a pioneer's ox-cart, imagining what would come next.

'Cause even with these long obsolete creations towering above me... we're still only at the beginning, we've barely even started the Prologue.

Unlike this CRTC nonsense.

We're living in a world that has already moved on. We're now in an age of Hulu and Boxee and, hell, iTunes. Yet we're held back and made to watch as old men bicker about who'll lead the wagon train over the mountain pass.

A pass we can all fly over pretty much any freaking time we want... sometimes for free (if you have access to Hulu... or Google).

I understand that regular broadcast is still valid and there's a hell of a lot of people in this country who barely have that... but it's hard to feel bad for a group of people who -- even when given the opportunity and the money -- soundly refuse to innovate.

Instead we get fighting, and lawyer-ing and... well, a whole lot of heartbreaking displays of apathy from those in charge to those who passionately want to make it work.

Those of us who do, in fact, give a damn.

And that's why it was so nice to get away for a bit. A chance to feel truly connected with something again; To clean the cobwebs off of my imagination and get the gears grinding once more.

'Cause, damn, it's easy to feel lost and cold in the shadow of the monolith.

Anyways, I'm back, energized and feeling positive again; having been reminded of why I enjoy what I do: the exploration of possibilities -- that push forward into the unknown, wanting to discover or create and share some great stories.

The CRTC reconvenes on December 14 and I think this trip was just what I needed to help get me ready for it.

Here's hoping for the best on that one.

On a side note: I know the Smithsonian's a fair bit out of range for return visits so I think I'm going to start making regular trips to our Royal Ontario Museum. I know it's not the same, but hey, I think my recent trips gotten me onto a bit of a museum kick...

Nothing wrong with that.

Cheers,
Brandon

1 comment:

Ryan Flanagan said...

Hi Brandon,

I apologize for doing this in a blog comment, but it's the only way I could think of to get a hold of you.

I'm a fourth-year journalism student at Laurier, and I'm working on a project about the state of local television in Canada. I've seen your writing about the 'Save Local TV'/'Stop The TV Tax' issue on Dead Things ON Sticks and elsewhere, and I'm wondering if you'd mind talking to me a bit about your feelings on the issue (less biased than most of what I get).

If you'd be willing to do this, please drop me an e-mail at rdflanagan[at]gmail.com.

Thanks,
Ryan