Sunday, September 20, 2009

Seeing is Believing? Or Deceiving?

Okay, I'm unable to resist telling the story of yesterday's post...both from an entertainment standpoint and a spiritual one. Let's start with the funny side of things.

This morning, just as I was racing out the door to avoid being late for 9 AM church, my eldest son called to say he'd been reading my blog. I love that he reads it so faithfully, but I was in a hurry. In fact, I was preparing to say a quick good-bye when he stopped me with a puzzling question. "Did you mean to put that video on your blog?" he queried. (Frankly, this seemed a rather silly thing to ask.) If I hadn't meant to post it, I wouldn't have, right? Uh...wrong.

Imagine my surprise when he informed me that what I'd actually posted was not quite the 50's circa Candid Camera fare I thought it was. Oh sure, the intended elevator prank was shown at the beginning, but merely as an introduction to what happened to be the rock video for a song called "Sheep to the Slaughter" by "A Perfect Circle." Believing I was posting the Candid Camera segment in its original form, I had published and attributed to Sheri Dew an MTV-style video that I am wildly guessing she would not have been particularly eager to use at Time Out for Women. (As a couple of the commenters alluded, it was pretty graphic in its depiction of sheep being slaughtered for market. Even if I had meant to post it, a warning of its explicit nature would have been in order.)

While I did notice that some people's comments (Carolyn's in particular) seemed a bit out of sync with the material as I (thought I) knew it, for reasons unknown to me, I subconsciously dismissed those little bits of cognitive dissonance...Until I received what I like to call Matt's phone call of doom and comeuppance, that is! Then I rushed over to my computer and actually clicked on the video so I could watch it, this time in its entirety.

Initially, I was somewhat dismayed but not dying over it. As many of you said, the video was disturbing, but not without a positive message...and it packed a pretty powerful punch. Sure, the people with the sheep heads on were a bit freaky, and there did seem to be a slight political agenda at one point, but I was doing a pretty good job of convincing myself that my video mistake (though unfortunate) wasn't as much of a fiasco as I'd assumed. That said, by the time the little lamb with a skeleton head rolled around, I was feelin' the cringe. As well as thinking to myself. "Oops, I've done it again." (Don't worry, I promise not to post Britney's video.) Neither will I ascribe it to a current or former church leader. heehee

In fact, future videos will be viewed in full before posting, and that's a promise. (Sorry, Sister Dew.)

Now for my spiritual thoughts on all of this:

It occurred to me that what transpired here is a perfect example of just what Sheri Dew meant when she said, "What you focus on determines what you see." I went to youtube looking for a video of men in an elevator, men I knew I would recognize. When I saw them, I felt like I had found exactly what I was looking for, and I didn't look past them to realize that this was not the video I was seeking. Despite the fact that the words "Sheep to the Slaughter (A Perfect Circle)" were clearly printed above the video for all to see, I saw only what I was focusing upon, the men in the elevator. Like those of us who watched the "basketball passing" video posted yesterday, I did not see the moonwalking bear(or evidence that this was a music video) (or the doomed sheep) at all.

How many ways does this principle play out in our lives? How many things do we look at and accept into our homes and families (and blogs!) without really seeing them as they are? This whole incident has definitely made me think.

Hey, a little redeeming value is always good, right?


PS. For those who thought the video, however graphic, was well done and made some powerful points, I want to say that I thought it had some definite merit, too. My regret lies in having accidentally attributed the wrong images to Sister Dew, as well as in having failed (however inadvertently) to provide a warning of the explicit nature of those images to readers who might have been disturbed by them. (In this case, my ignorance of the video I displayed was definitely NOT bliss.)

PPS. But I still have to laugh at myself.

(And I'm afraid my family will be joining me. I am NEVER going to hear the end of this one.)


Momza said...

I just wanted to thank you for the wonderful poetry book you sent! I have poured over it's pages and enjoyed every minute of it! Thanks for the delightful surprise!!!

Carolyn said...

LOL. I was very surprised to see it on your blog.

Sue said...

Me too, Carolyn!


Heather Anderson said...

Dear Sue,

You rock! A Perfect Circle rules!!

Respectfully Submitted,

Matthew D. Anderson

Sue said...

Hey, Matthew D. Anderson...

Do you recall that you have your very own Google account, apart from Heather's? The password may or may not be the name of your favorite sports team.


PS. And yes, I do rock. Just not in this instance...

Darlene said...

Glad you decided to "come clean" It never really upset me, I was just a little unsure about it, as I am sure a few people were. This will make everyone understand that yes, we sometimes make mistakes. We actually do!! That being said, it did have a message of its own, however unseemly it might have been.

I might add that Sheri Dew is my absolute favorite, and I would have given a lot to have been able to be with you to hear her in person.

karen said...

Well I wondered... not so much about you as about Sheri Dew. It just seemed so un-Sheri Dew-like to show actual sheep being slaughtered. But, sheep that I am, I just sort of went "Hmmmmm..." and didn't think any more about it.

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