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Drama and GPS:
In defense of Gushy Observational Excess ©2001

By Miss lah-dee-dah Avril

All my life, I've been described and frequently parodied as being overly dramatic—or, by some people, as simply 'dramatic' without the ‘overly’ —whereby they intend to be every bit as damning as the excess-drama people, because any drama is embarrassingly incontinent.  The setting of life in either sharp relief or poignant subtlety bores these folks; they find it wearying and confusing and unnecessary.  So be it.

My pesky questions remain:  Why are these folks the arbiters of the drama question?  Why are their qualifications superior?  Why are mine correspondingly suspect as being a gratuitous production of some kind?

Their unspoken question is:  What [neurotic] need is met by “working” to generate this kind of presence?—Love of attention?  Attention is a consequence, not a motive.  It's not truly love of attention, it's just an acceptance of attention.  Attention brings responsibility—not corruption.

Having acknowledged attention (and again even the word “attention” is corroded with childhood-type shame—it would be more honest to call it awareness, as in “others are aware of us”)—we must then go on to show the truth about ourselves.  And if the truth is shallow or unpalatable in any way, then we have to bear the responses of the audience/jury on that, too.  The attention is a two way street.  And the drama-phobes are only envious of the laughter and the sighs, not of the outrage and disappointment that greets the expressive spirit.

I feel eminently qualified to judge this matter of who's Over- and who's Under-dramatic.

As I see it, we respond to the moment, then we reflect on our response, then we put the two together for something resembling a map of our present location.  End of theory.  We triangulate the truth from our position in the moment, then in retrospect—and enjoy the resulting extra scope that this gives our intuition.  And our intuition is the most pleasurable part of ourselves.  It's our onboard Darwinian GPS that keeps us all heading for a higher place on the food chain.

What has this to do with drama?  There is a key point in the equation, which is reflection, and reflection is the soul of drama.  To frame the moment on a stage or with words or sound or facial expression or touch -- conveys something about the event that's only visible out of one's own eyesockets, one's own reflection of what is.

So if someone finds that my plot is unlikely and my music too slinky and my lighting too kind and my costumes too flattering and my food too aromatic, and my ideals too cloying—then I can be sorry that I wearied their responses, without ever accepting that their review is absolute.

They may simply be missing an antenna.

I can tie my antennae in a knot around your waist.

The Under-dramatics live at the top of the bell curve, with the greatest population of fellows.  They're sincere and loving and nefarious in the same percentages as elsewhere; there are just more of them.  So they feel obliged to sub-title things for each other.  They translate and categorize things that are spoken in any unfamiliar, undecode-able language.  And the word 'dramatic' comes in handy as a category that explains much.  It pretty much covers anything that requires reflection, or is evidence of reflection.

I wish I could explain that I am only describing what I see.  This is the answer to the most frequently asked question of my life,  "What are you staring at?"   I'm staring at my vision and if you happen to be in it, well then you're going to necessarily see yourself in my mirror, through my lens.  When there's a gap between the seer and the seen, it's the mirror version that always suffers and is accused of gratuity:  "You're such a silly girl. "

I am deeply silly.

 

 

 

[All cartoons from www.cartoonbank.com]

LATER:  After yet another criticism from someone decrying the need for "attention":

Big difference between need for attention and need for companionship with one's own kind.  Here's the protocol:

In order to find company of your own kind, you must show yourself so that they'll recognize you.  This requires courage of a particular kind:  The courage not to feel the rejection of the many for the bliss of finding the few.

Seems relevant.


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