“I’ve always been a media junkie,” producer Michael London (Sideways) tells L.A. Times writer Rachel Abramowitz in a good piece called “Admit It — We’re All Video Junkies Now.” Digital- media junkies, I think she meant to say.
down the rabbit hole,” London continues. “When the rabbit hole has gotten bigger and deeper through the internet, for people like me who multitask, it’s created a real danger. It creates a perfect meltdown scenario to people who are vulnerable to trying to do too much at once.
“You can sit in your office, and you can be having a phone conversation while reading Variety online, and answering your e-mail and having an IM chat with somebody. It sounds crazy, but it’s not an exaggeration.”
“The thing that suffers,” London says, “is your focus and your creativity. It limits the time you have for sitting and watching a movie, or reading a script, or thinking about an idea. The things that suffer and get thrown away are the things that require the most sustained thought.”
“Which is why I’ve trying in my own humble way to disconnect a little bit. You have to force yourself to go cold turkey. I literally tried to listen through an entire album a couple of weeks ago, to try to get back to that space where you listen to things as a whole instead of just sample. We live in a culture where everyone is sampling.”
This columnist lives in the rabbit hole, which is where all focus and creativity that I’m able to harness manifest. There is awareness, of course, of the ground and the grass above, and of the surrounding open-air, blue-sky environment and all the organic tactile things that go with that. Sometimes I even climb up and go out and do things in that environment — eating out, walking, seeing movies in theatres, patrolling the aisles of Koontz hardware or Best Buy, bike-riding, etc.
But I only do these things for four- or five-hour periods — six is pushing it. I used to live in that world but no longer and never again. The rabbit hole is home, hearth, nourishment, a playground, a temple….life itself. Such as it is.
London is right, of course: rabbit-holing does limit the time we have for the things that require the most sustained thought. Which is why I do my best thinking while (a) taking a shower, (b) driving in Los Angeles without the radio on or (c) walking the streets of Manhattan or Brooklyn.
And I’m proud to say, by the way, that unlike a good 30 to 40% of the people I see in Manhattan, I don’t indulge in the most hermetic, anti-life, anti-social rabbit hole thing you can do, which is walking around all the time listening to high- decibel iPod tunes with those little earplug headphones.