Wednesday, November 23, 2005

A Grumpy Post

OK, I'm sure this will piss some people off, but I find Terry Gilliam's film, "Brazil" kind of a bore.
I first saw it at about 13 with a group of 5 geeks. Three fell asleep, I stayed awake, though was bored (and admittedly, didn't quite get it), while the 5th geek sat rapt for the full length in unblinking-eyeballed rapture.

I watched it again a few years back with my wife; she fell asleep. I got it this time, though still found it too boring and slow. The genius of this film, however, comes in everyday adult life, when you find yourself shaking your head and your fist, recalling Jonathan Pryce's face, a victim of the flawed data-tracking and policy-addled system of the world, debating maddeningly trite rules intricacies with the cynical, zealous, inept adherence of the soul-devoured office troglodytes, the priestesses and priests and parish at the alter of their heathen policy deities. These drones have spent so long in the dark of their paperwork laws, that their eyes have glazed over and become useless, they've forgotten, are incapable of seeing, that there are actual human beings out there - on the outside - at the other end of that phone and those datascreens, people with dependants being negatively and seriously affected by their empirical little meaningless laws, many of which CAN be overridden, in spite of their power-drunk, semi-apologetic claims.

I'm tired of arguing with people over the phone about huge messes begat over minor paperwork or data-entry errors. A missing or misplaced checkmark shouldn't set people at such odds. The zombied creature I had the displeasure of debating most recently was rather distressed when I explained that she had no soul. I only levelled that statement out of frustration. And sadly, though I was the victim of the paperwork mishap, I was not the first to make a personal, counterproductive comment. In fact, I didn't level it as an attack. I explained that a few other busniess entities had been similarly affected by said paperwork dispute, in which I was blameless and at the mercy of others to fix - and that those other entities HADN'T created problems for me as a result; I could only assume this was because the humans at those other business entities still had their souls intact, and recognized that creating a problem for me, would be akin to suing the mayor of Seattle over the Falklands War. It didn't get any uglier than that. The saddest part, which compelled me to post my frustrated rant here, is that it's not the first such telephone troglodyte debate I've "enjoyed" in the past year. God, I haven't been engaged in so many tedious debates over minutiae since I used to play geek-level board games. Oh well. . . It's a sad, sad world.

Happy f%#king Thanksgiving.


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