Too entertained to do anything: Professional entertainment overload

It’s one of those things that we just assume about our everyday world: nowadays we live in a world where we get very high quality professional entertainment available to us at all times.
And that’s normal to us now.
Certainly now, with Youtube and the internet, the ability to get any entertainment at any time.
But even in my days growing up, when it was about TV and movies, and that was something we all had access to.
If there was a big movie that came out, or a TV show, anybody could watch it around the world.
And the same with music.
Perhaps even more obvious in the case of music, we all have access to professionally produced recorded music available to us at all times, and this is just completely normal.
We can hear some of the top musicians and composers and producers in the world, and hear their work at any time we want.
We can hear the work of some of the best writers and performers and producers and production people making theatrical recorded entertainment, TV and movies, anytime we want.
And that’s simply part of our ordinary background.
But if you roll the clock back and imagine what used to be before the advent of modern movies and recorded music – it was only a little over a hundred years ago that this began – before that, you would have your local musicians.
You would have a chance to listen to whatever local musician happened to be around.
The whole idea of recording music and playing it back later: that might as well have been magic.
So you would be hearing live music played by whoever was there.
And for the theatrical productions that we now can see on TV and movies, you would maybe be seeing the local theatre troupe.
That might have been even harder, because musicians, perhaps you could get a solo musician or just a few, but to really put on theatrical productions, you need many people, and it would have been whatever would have been locally available.
So people living back then would have been so much more limited in their access to entertainment.
And in many cases, people would learn to produce their own music.
That was popular for the previous few centuries, where you could get your sheet music, and then you would play it in your living room with your family or friends.
And people would have to organize their own entertainment.
It’s often hard to imagine what those long winter evenings would have been like, in a dimly lit living room, playing homemade music.
I hear the people would often read out loud to each other.
It’d be one way of passing the time with the kind of entertainment that we could now easily turn to Youtube or streaming to receive.
So I wonder what kind of difference that makes to our lives, and how much this new access to entertainment is affecting us.
It seems like it makes it so much easier to dive into the world of entertainment and live for the entertainment, to really get lost in it.
I mean, the ability to listen to the greatest musicians ever through their recordings, anytime you want: you could immediately, right now, look something up on Youtube and just listen to some of the greatest musicians ever.
You don’t have to care about who is the local musician in town, and you don’t have to learn to play this all yourself.
And, perhaps even more striking to consider, imagine comparing the local theatre troupe, you know, putting on a little production.
Even if it was the the greatest theatre troupe in the land, in the big city, how does that compare to a production like Game of Thrones or Star Wars or whatever the big production is? Imagine something like that being enacted by a local theatre troupe.
So what kind of effect does this have? It seems to me like it’s just another piece in us being so heavily stimulated.
There’s just so much entertainment and that’s being offered at all times that it’s almost like it raises the bar of entertainment, so that we need more and more stimulation to be entertained.
You often hear about the old days, or you can see it in, like, country evenings, quiet country evenings by the fire, where somebody, you know, reads a passage from a book, and then somebody plays some music on an instrument, and maybe they tell stories around the fire.
And now it just sounds quaint, and in some ways likeable, but to imagine that competing against the kind of professionally produced music: somebody can just press a button to play a recording of professional music, or turn on a screen to present a professionally produced theatrical film production.
We can’t compete with the quality and intensity of this entertainment.
So we get to benefit from seeing this wonderful entertainment, and experiencing the best and the great quality of it, but at the same time, it also possibly traps us, by simply being so entertaining that we don’t really need to do anything else.
It’s like entertainment is too good.
It’s so good that it’s hard for real life to compare.

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