05/28/2010 05:12 am ET Updated Nov 17, 2011

Lo Fi, Bang & Olufsen, and All That Cheating Jazz (Part 1)

Informed consent:

I've got this blog on my mind. I think it can explain some things about our culture of Low Fidelity and all that Tiger Woods/Jesse James cheating jazz but I'd have to go a bit wide with it, a bit sociological, rather than psychological. So, it's going to be a bit long. I'll have to break it up into several parts and, frankly, the very sound of this project already bores me (let alone, possibly, you). It might take me three or four evenings or three or four weeks to finish it and I just don't want to mislead you, the reader: I am not fully committed to finishing it. This might be the kind of reading experience where you'll follow my train of thought for a week and then the tracks of my inspiration will run out and you'll be left hanging. So, in the spirit of full disclosure, know this in advance: I cannot guarantee a happy ending of this writing-reading experience, not to you, not to myself. I can only tell you this much: at the time of my writing this - and I am writing this live, online, straight into the editor - my intention is to finish this blog-project, but, as you have probably learned from life, a promise is just a statement of intent, not a guarantee. No one can guarantee the future because the future never exists. We think about the future in the now that we are in, but we are never physically or psychologically in the future. That's how time works (if there is such a thing as time). We live in the present, always on the tip of the immediately known, always moving blind into the unknown of the future. It's always like that and what is always the case has to be eventually psychologically integrated into one's worldview, into one's operational software. So, if you decide to follow this blog mini-series, know that I might cheat you in the end and not deliver.

Part 1

There are different ways to assess the psychological status of a given culture. One intuitive way to check where the mind-wind blows is with the help of Media Signal-to-Noise Ratio (MSNR). Before you rush off to Google, let me put your investigative impulse on hold for a sec: there is no such cultural index. It's just a thought-form I've constructed a minute ago in an attempt to get to the essence of the point I wish to make. Which is: some cultures, just like some individuals, move from Form to Essence, some cultures, just like some individuals move from Essence to Form.

Media can play one of the two roles in these cultural psychodynamics:

- media can merely witness and document these shifts (that's journalism);
- media can propel these shifts (in either direction, be it from Form to Essence, or from Essence to Form) in which case it is media of propaganda.

[add the local TV evening-news angst-inducing drum-roll soundtrack as I ask you the following question] Do you know which mind-culture you are in?!

While I just posed the question I left you no more than a paragraph break worth of room to ponder it: I am obviously not interested in your own opinion just yet. I'd like to first influence it and prime it with the following context. It will seem tangential but - at the time of my writing this, which is still now - I am adequately sure that the ends of my meaning will come full circle by the time you reach the bottom of this blog-page. So, here we go.

(to be continued or not)


I usually offer you resources pertaining to what I write about. In this case, since I am writing about something that doesn't exist (i.e. future, the future of this blog-post, etc.), I have no resources to offer, other than to remind you, for whatever it's worth, of the fact that you have survived uncertainty a moment at a time every moment so far...