Poetry and personal blog – Spilling my guts to strangers

The Pulse of American Idol

It never fails to amaze me how whenever I sit down to write a post for this blog, it often does not end up being what I had originally planned.

I was going to write a humorous, maybe satirical, post about how much reality TV I watch and how much of it there is available to watch, running the gamut from bachelorette/bachelor/looking for love-type shows to Dr. G Medical Examiner, Bridezilla, Project Runway, and American Idol. I was going to take a stab at why reality TV is so popular. I was going to joke about having my finger on the pulse of America.

Yet this week has been absolutely soul sucking as far as I’m concerned, starting, of course, with my own petty problems–this time involving traveling for my job–and culminating with the ultimate reality of unimaginable human suffering caused by the earthquake in Haiti. When I watch the newscasts, which can sometimes be as contrived as any episode of Jerry Springer, I can’t help but be reminded of the time when New Orleans became a third world country in the wake of another natural disaster, Katrina. I also wonder about whether San Francisco could one day be its own island and at what human cost? What would we do?

For right now, prayers, positive thoughts, and monetary-type donations are all the average one of us can do to help the immediate crisis in Haiti. For the future, what will we do to end the poverty and political strife there, if anything, or even here in the US for that matter?

So I had thought of a funny ending, which I probably shouldn’t use but I doubt that I will ever be able to work it in  at any other time. It had something to do with the … wait a minute … the pulse of America … I’m losing it. Where’s the defibrillator?? Here it is, I’m firing up the pads. Stand back! Stand back! CLEAR…..

Got it!

© Sweepy Jean and Sweepy Jean Explores the (Webby) World, 2010.

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Comments on: "The Pulse of American Idol" (9)

  1. A HUGE a-freaking-men to this post!!! Tell me where to send flowers if the patient doesn’t pull through. Love ya Sweepy, well said.

  2. Ha! Thanks, Lady, love ya back.

  3. Tough Subject. I always wonder myself, what is the appeal of reality television. I personally despise it so much that I’m sure it helped inspire me years ago to give up the television (I still watch shows, most of the good ones are on DVD)

    However, besides myself, I can’t think of anyone I know who doesn’t watch some form of it. I think it’s the idea of taking time out of my “reality” to watch someone else’s as if it’s bound to be more worthwhile. (That and the fact that “reality” on television is scripted and manipulated for effect.)
    Of course the mainstream news, as you suggest, is about as far from reality as these shows, every story whether triumph or tragedy is tweaked to suit the bottom line. If they don’t find the story they want they’ll create it.

    As far as the San Francisco question goes, what we do (as a country)I think (as New Orleans should tell you) depends on who it affects, the powerful or the helpless? Unfortunate, but true I fear. Although I’d love to be wrong.

    We all have such a long way to go. I hope someone can find that defribrillator soon!I’ll keep hoping for it though. Thanks for another thoughtful post!

  4. I guess the love for all of the reality shows we have is based on the realization of the fact that these are real people who are out there. Not some actors, not some characters. They are like us, real. And it gives are the right to discuss them, to compare them with ourselves, to boast that we are so much better and if we were given the chance we would not screw it like that.

    In the very end of it, we like to watch them because they show us, that part of us that we maybe don’t reveal to anyone.

    • Thanks for your comments, Lena. I think you hit it on the head as to why we watch reality tv. We relate it back to some aspect of our own lives.

  5. An interesting perspective Lena. Regarding that though (not actors or characters), it falls flat for me because these shows are manipulated to such a degree that you’re not watching “real people” anymore. Producers carefully select participants based on their dynamics with each other (pair the prissy one with the obnoxious one and the anarchist with the conservative) all for dramatic effect. Their triumphs and meltdowns likewise are shown selectively to appeal to our emotions. I appreciate why the execs do this (it makes people watch it.) but all the same, I feel like I’m being lied to.

  6. I often wonder how real are these people in reality shows. Now, the pulse of America – it’s in our nature to care and relate – somewhere deep inside.

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