Baxil (baxil) wrote,

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Jonas' addiction

Okay, look, some of you seem to have missed the point of my last post. I thought we settled this. It's absolutely surreal that we have to be having this argument again, but here goes.


And if you're expecting me to use that stupid "ten years ago it was just a hobby, it's not my responsibility to stop" straw man all the crusaders whine about, you don't know me very well. (Although I do have some sympathy for that argument. I'm sick of folks who think the only solution to Luce is to create a world safe for it by banning absolutely everything it can be used on. Look, we made it. The drug should serve us, not vice versa.)

The fact of the matter is, no matter what some of you neanderthals may think, there is such a thing as moderation. Luce addicts don't get off on the drug itself -- they're addicted to the stories the drug puts them into. They turn the page, and they're pulled into a carefully controlled fantasy that leaves them crying out for more, more, more until the big climactic finish. And then there's always one more book to read ... always the friend who says, "Yeah, Earthsea was pretty epic, but you have GOT to trip through Lord of the Rings" ...

What's my point? That stamps don't feed Luce addictions. Yes, stamps have still analog images (side note: thank goodness the drug doesn't work on moving images or text on a screen, or else the Web would become an even bigger minefield than it is today). Yes, Luce works on them, and yes, Jonas is probably sneaking into my stamp collection while I'm at work. But so? The boy needs at least one guilty pleasure in his life, and stamps are harmless in a way that books never could be.

Because there's no narrative. There are disjointed images. Even the ones that show landscapes or concepts or inventions are just snapshots, a moment frozen in time. That stamp of a Chinese dragon soaring through the sky gives you sprawling vistas but never lets you feel the sensation of flying. That stamp of Christina's World takes you to a field of glowing wheat and lets you watch the girl's stuttered breathing, but you can never hold conversations with her or help her inside for dinner.

Books are where you cross the line. You start substituting pre-programmed scenarios on a piece of paper for real, human interactions. Books and Luce is a dangerous and unhealthy thing. Luce users know that. Luce abusers don't. Jonas has fallen into that trap.

(And, sheesh, I was kidding about being worried by the long hair thing, people. You'd think you were all using pre-<sarcasm> tag browsers.)

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