20160703 — I like to think of live video as a kind of anthropologic data-stream. Without cuts and editing, webcam vids or livestreams have the transparent appearance of total disclosure, except you’re the talking head who’s tasked with making sense of it all.
One of the most affecting things I’ve seen in years was a livestream from near Ferguson, a few weeks after the protests, where someone with a phone was livestreaming the fire department hosing blood off the sidewalk after another police-shooting of an unarmed black man (he was carrying a sandwich, if I remember correctly).
On the frivolous, more web-cammy side of things, an unedited longstream can provide an amount of data that would otherwise be inaccessible. Case in point, this 26-minute view of a “long drive” competition here at a private country club in Atlanta.
There is so much happening here sociologically (and economically) it could be an easy 5,000 word piece. The question for me is whether to write it, or just accept the fact I’ve already wasted 26 minutes watching kids hit golf balls at a country club I’ll never get to play. (That last part’s probably not entirely true — I’ll probably end-up teeing-it-up there some day.)
But seriously, the unrelenting awfulness of the dad-jokes from the host; the body-language of boys just growing into their man-selves; the starry eyes in the younger kids who have the privilege and fortune of growing into a world where they can hang-out in such a “safe” bubble, free from the grit & grime of a major metropolitan city — it’s all here, and it’s all staggering to me.
There should be an experimental film fest that curates longform videos that offer these kinds of “peeking behind the curtain” views into niche aspects of society and culture that are otherwise off-limits. A festival for the re-upped, 21st-century-youtoob’able, unintentional versions of Mondo Cane, perhaps.
Or yeah, maybe I should start one.
20160630 — That dream you had on vacation where you flew into Dagestan, and somehow snuck through customs without having to show your passport, which you accidentally left at home anyway.
And when you walked outside, there was a huge snowstorm, and camels were stumbling about through snowy drifts. That dream.