I’ve been listening to Jesus is King a lot. I can’t afford to go to a Sunday Service by Kanye, so I imagined what it’d be like to be in one.
The taps of fingernails alongside the rims of clipboards. Little drums beating in a pleasant way that triggers tingles. They are obscurely rhythmic, oscilating with their sounds to create a melody that just hits you, puts you back to your seat and sinks you back as if you were on a sofa.
You’d have encountered this once if you subscribe to ASMR. It’s a common ASMR trigger.
“The Medium is the Massage”
My first reaction towards the reading was: “That must have been a typo right? It’s message, not massage?” What can be seen as a mistake, might be intentional. I’m not really sure but it does set a precedent of brain jolting and outside-of-the-box thinking. This is the activity I had been doing as I went through the reading.
Marshall McLuhan and Quentin Flore journeyed their readers through the annals of history and the innovations. “The medium, or process, of our time-electric technology is reshaping and restructuring patterns of social interdependence and every aspect of our social life.” If you’d think about it, this is true towards all major innovations we have encountered as we read about a new chapter in the books of mankind: Symbols, Alphabets, Letters, Languages, Writings, Prints. These are methods of communication, each is a step in the progression towards the next one. With each unlocked stage, mankind was able to convey more thoughts and messages with one another, enabling us to achieve more and elevate to a higher plane of thoughts. We have progressed from sticks and stones to education, from primitive hunting to industrializations, from sailing seas to reaching for the stars. The medium, within this context meaning the form of communication, has enabled us to reshape and redefined our reality.
Let us apply that to the context of the topic of our course: Media. The medium is media, and the media truly has given us the tools and ability to redefine the reality we live in and reshape our views. We are given a platform of self-expression and connection: Artists are now easily able to publish and promote their art, an extension of their self-expressions now easily accessible. Media, this medium, is an extension of our mind and our inner desire to be understood, to be connected.
Often I’d be at scenic places, with an R&B song on, and the mood is just right. I would feel immersed with the view. That’s how I was in awed by New York City: Just being at Gantry Plaza at night with a Frank Ocean song on.
I’d think in that moment: Wow, if only I can remember this forever. I pulled my phone out and tried to capture the moment and it dawned upon me: The camera couldn’t capture this. There was a stark difference between the view I was seeing and that of the photo I took.
I realized it was because of the position of my view, and the field of view of my eyes instead of the flat-lens surface of the phone. If money wasn’t an issue, I would like to propose a contact lens that has photographic feature.
- A smart phone
- A PVC case to put his pens & pencils and other tools in
- A notebook/journal
- A measuring tape
- Some sort of addictive substance
- A water bottle
- A pair of headphones (Airpods are too corporate)
- A mini-color swatch
- A wallet
- An USB
- A Tide Pen
- A fidgeting toy (Kmart Eggs are cute)
- A portable charger
- A pair of glasses (and its accompanying case that’s not the original one because all original cases are ugly)
- Most importantly, a tote bag (nylon, zippered, protected)
“Everyone’s a narcissist” – Jerry Saltz.
I have never related to a statement more than this: It is one hell of an opener. This statement, combined with Lesson 33, reinforced an idea which had been inherent in my mind: I am a genius. Not in a condescending way, “I am a genius” serves to reassure myself; that I’m the protagonist of my own story and the people around me are just living in it. I think this sense of self confidence, with a slight nonchalance yet self-awareness, is an important essence to have for an individual. This is especially important considering the world of super interconnectivity and opinions we currently live in. That is why Kanye West is one of my personal idols: His recent rants, comments and philosophies are controversial, borderline insane yet one can’t deny that he lives by his ideals and what he believes in. He’s the protagonist of his story! (Plus his music is great, Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy is a top 10 album of all time. Don’t @ me.)
Everyone’s a star of their own show however, so while we practice this self-confident mentality, we have to respect others’ stories and how they interact with ours. Because like it or not, our stories intersect and share the same world. Everything is great in moderation.
Lesson 20, 21 and 22 struck home for me: As a person studying at a business school and majoring in Accounting, I struggle to choose between the “logical” career which may provide more security and what I am interested in. There is no denying that I love the arts, music and cultures. I am lucky to be in a position where I am able to even have the choice to pursue either path: My parents who sacrificed a lot for me didn’t have those options when they were at my age. There is a sense of filial duty: Giving back for their hard work. I really need to define my own sense of success, per Lesson 21, and apply it to my own life.