For various reasons, I didn’t sleep well or long enough last night. Too much chocolate, too many episodes of Father Ted (RIP FrankKelly/Father Jack) and too much looking at The Oscars on Twitter when I woke up at four in the morning.
The Oscars completely fascinate me. I love film and have a membership for my local independent cinema (you can take your wine into the screening, what’s not to love?). I also do love fashion but Oscars ‘fashion’ is a whole other ballgame. Not so much fashion as a gigantic advertising exercise.
You long for Bjork and her swan costume to turn up again. Just to see the expressions on their faces.
But my purpose for adding my not-very-big-oar to the Oscars chatter is to wonder about how we reached this level of global recognition of an unelected (relatively) few. That is not to take away from the winners’ achievements at all. Merely to think how far we have come in a hundred years.
I am in the process of writing a piece about ‘the future’. The brief says will it be better or worse, tell us in a story. Now, I do love science fiction but when I brainstormed (well, more pondered over a cuppa) a list of what might be considered better or worse, I was quite appalled to find that the ‘worse’ list seemed, to me, to be more likely to happen. It was all global warming (and yes, I did see Leonardo DiCaprio’s Oscars speech live, thanks Insomnia), global war, rich/poor divide stuff. Global peace, food and water for all, etc on the ‘better’ list seemed pretty unachievable. And I am usually a glass half full kind of person. Some things – like ‘no work’ – seemed like they could go either way.
But when I looked back – something I much prefer to do, hence the genealogy obsession – I could see how very unlikely our current situation would have seemed a hundred years ago. 1916. The First World War was raging, manned flight was barely ten years old, the movies existed but silently, no Russian Revolution yet. On and on, ad infinitum.
2016 and I am lying in bed watching a live awards ceremony over five thousand miles away on my ‘phone’ (which I use for reading, writing, listening, taking photos, shopping, general communication but rarely phoning).
Do you remember ‘Gulf War Vision’ in the 1990s? When war was first properly shown live on television? Watching bombs fall? How long would the First World War have actually lasted if everyone could have seen what was going on?
So February 2116. Where will we be? Will we still be ‘alone’ in the universe? Will we finally have worked out how to walk around in space ships like we have been able to do in movies for the last fifty years? Will Leonardo’s predictions of global catastrophe have come true? Will the Oscars ceremony have stretched to a two day love-in?
I want to finish this post with the old ‘answers on a postcard’ line but that is so last century. Comments below please?!