Everyone remembers the red pill and blue pill story from the Matrix, which would have been some context to this article as had it not been the much required green tea I needed when I sat down to write this piece. Coming to the Barista, I needed a detox so strong that I left my usual choice of a Cafe Mocha and instead went for the horribly tasting beverage…the horror of all coffee shops…the horrid Green Tea Latte!
My first preference was the Hibiscus and Pomegranate Iced tea, but unfortunately, they ran out of it that day. (which also tastes horrible for Starbucks standard). I needed a detox which was cold to the throat and would cleanse my interiors. After a day of mediocre conversations, excessive alcohol and junk food consumption, I resolved to go for the anti-thesis of a satisfying beverage.
As I sipped through it with contempt, I felt that it wasn’t my tummy that needed the detox but it was my soul! My aura, my brain, my thoughts or whatever you may call the soul in your world. I just consumed toxic materials through my eyes and ears. Toxicity is in abundance around and no one is willing to raise the bar of taste. Sipping the ghastly drink is helping me clear my conscious of the toxic over-ride I just went through. It’s medicinal in fact.
When I say toxic, I don’t mean that we are the proponents of concentration camps of the Nazi-Germanic era or we’re going through the horrors that Middle Eastern folks are going through after years of Genocide or mass killings. Thankfully, its not that bad yet. Since real-time content is available at our fingertips on our handsets and multimedia screens are omnipresent in our urban existence, we’re more in a position to be influenced by propaganda media and mediocre communication. Evidence of this fact is when you witness a growing league of eccentric extroverted youth talking about their personal social media metrics around you instead of carrying out meaningful conversations for a better future, an outburst of videos that come on our screens painting a picture of a post-card perfect life even when real-life issues such as poverty and malnutrition mar the future of our country.
How is this intrusion of our personal lives happening and influencing the course of our future growth? A few days back, research reports erupted of the youth being unaccomplished due to over-exposure of the internet in the US. Ferocious consumption of video, television, social media…the sources are endless. I don’t think this consumption dose is going to reduce anytime soon in the coming future. Bombardment of content is inevitable in our veritable future. The concept of clarity and self-awareness is losing itself to gluttony and ‘over-awareness’, an overload if you would put it that way. If it ain’t bigger, better, faster, complex-er, then it ain’t worth it.
Let me take a gulp of that horrid green tea latte for a bit.
Consumption is easier than creating. The thought of consuming before creating has no benchmark, other than something that fills the brain cells up to a limit where creation becomes a necessity rather than a way of life. It’s difficult to even consider that.
Another thing that changes our patterns to consumption rather than creating is monotony. A continuous and consistent struggle of the senses allows us to think creatively and vent it out. A brilliant guy once said that creativity comes from the 3 B’s- Bed, Bath and Bus(travelling). He’s not wrong but these activities fill our senses and strip us of the commodities that we value like Television and media which allows us to think and create that for ourselves. So we create. Is creation a force of mankind? We must innately create in order to survive? When we are taken away from our space of comfort, we are innately thinking of creating a vision and that’s what essentially makes us human. Are we designed to move, to reproduce, to create, to consume? The answer is a definite yes, we are to consume and create. Isn’t that why we have limbs to move, thumbs to hold, mouth to eat. We will consume and take out the waste and convert the energy of this planet to move and create.
“We are what we eat”, it doesn’t restrict itself to just food. The phrase extends itself to say, “You are what you eat, you are what you think”. Entertainment content available today is spread across a wide spectrum of themes – cooking challenges, game-theory voyeurism, fantasy drama, pulp fiction, dark satire…the list is endless. If we’re consuming content of different varieties and making it a point of conversation in our daily lives, how are we able to distinguish ourselves as a curator of our thoughts. We are being given these options in today’s time and all we need is the intent and time to consume it.
The future of content is massive as more and more people are entering the online realm. However, as content creators, do we not have a ‘white-hat’ responsibility to entertain, influence or inform. A flurry of videos that showcase endless vine compilations doing the rounds on multiple online channels isn’t just degrading our youth to consume such content but is also influencing them to divulge in creating content of the similar type and enacting such mundane practices. Painting a picture of a fulfilled life whereas the artifice is apparent behind the scenes. Do we not have a responsibility as mentors to guide our consumption and curate our thoughts to evade such endless online gluttony and use it in our favour rather than giving in to our innate reflex.
Yuck!! the green tea latte was horrendous. The baristas know it, the coffee shop owner knows it, the customers know it, but it made a wonderful instagram post.