Recently, some folks that this writer “sort-of” knew, just came back for a massive camping trip at some spot located in the northern part of California. This camping trip consisted of this married couple that fits within the demographic of “Empty Nest Baby Boomers” who went with their adult aged son, a sister-in-law and her spouse, along with another relative. They traveled in an RV with another car in tow to their campsite for a few days of rafting, hiking, and the usual camping antics. From what this writer knows, they had themselves a good time! But this group of campers were not totally happy about their trip! Their site was perfect, the activities they took part in offered lots of fun and excitement, and even the excursion to and from the location was easy to get to and from for what it was. So what brought them to their misery when their week away was anything but perfect? Where they stayed in was located in an area where cell phone reception was poor, and wifi access was non-existent! Taking these elements into consideration generally meant that for that week away in back woods nature, they were officially “off the grid”! That’s right gang! Not of their internet connected devices were working! While they were in their wooded area, they could not send any pictures to post to their Facebook friends. Nobody would be able to send text messages stating how everything on their trip was going. For after hours events, there was no video streaming to be done on any device they dragged along! Not on their laptop, their electronic pad, or on their cell phones! Nothing! They were really forced to actually “rough it” as they had to deal with nothing that technology could ever offer! Oh, the horrors they went through!
The family in question lives their times of the post-modern world where life revolves gadgety that tells them where everything is, how everything is, and what’s it going to be like out there from the weather to the latest ball scores! This couple, the fore noted Empty Nest Baby Boomers, uses four (count ‘em) cell phones between the Mr. and Mrs. Their thirty year old adult son and their thirty-two year old daughter (recently married and lives near Dallas, Texas) are constantly glued to their phones. They access their web sites and related apps via a laptop, a pad, along with their phones on an average of four or more hours a day! The Baby Boomers spends a little less than three hours a day on their phone alone! Everything they need to be aware of is tied toward their cell phones! If somebody asks “dad” a question for instance, he doesn’t seem to figure the situation out by thinking. He just reaches from his phone, and before one can say “huh?”, his answer is posted on his phone screen, ready to take on the world with his so-called knowledge.
What this writer is stating is that this couple, along with those that came along on their little trip to nature, could not function too well without the use of their devices. It was almost as if they could not step back away for a moment to take on what the real world had to offer, even when they were far away from any urban blight that could stand in their way! In other words, they couldn’t camp out properly because there was nothing that can show them how to camp in a wooded area!
Folks as this writer is describing is only part of an isolated episode. Many people feel frustrated when they want to get away from common life for a short period of time, they are forced to turn off any electronic devices in order to concentrate on themselves and the elements surrounding them. These facts were proven within a recent study as conducted by the University of London. According to the study, a group of adults spent some time in the wilderness without the usage of any media. This group, not having any access to an internet or wifi connection, experienced greater creativity and problem-solving skills. The study research team found the impact of time spent in nature or in a natural non-urban setting resulted in a significant “cognitive advantage” as it was labeled. This reduction in attention demanding stimuli ranging from ringing cell phones to gadgetry making beeping sounds, aids attention restoration
For those interested in reading the entire research report, we suggest to visit the link for all of the details at: http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0051474
Granted, such technology that is available within one’s hands has been proven time and time again to be much of a blessing as it has been a curse! Modern cell phone technology using the smartphone platform has been around for ten or so years. Within the last seven years, that smartphone tech has moved in massive leaps and bounds. It has also gone from bad to worse, depending on how one looks at the situation on hand. There are moments where people’s lives do revolve around this device where the main function was to only send calls and receive calls. Now it can do almost anything and everything. That is good in some ways, while frightening in others.
This writer isn’t stating that such wifi connected gadgetry all play evil parts–far from that! Just like anything that can be considered as a vice, everything is great under moderation. Use those electronic devices to one’s little heart’s content. But after that time is spent in a wise manner, turn off the hand held machine, take a step back, and see the real world for what it is–a world that is there to experience for how and what it stands! It’s been done this way for generations. Why not now?
Since this article has been written, the couple that went on their little adventure has since posted hundred (yes–hundreds) of photos of their camping trip. Some of these pictures has been seen by this writer, while others has yet to be viewed by yours truly. The pictures are rather impressive with all of their antics. But at least one will give them credit. For the week or so away from their home, they had themselves a great time and will look forward in doing it all again soon, perhaps in the fall season. They have their trip planning apps on their phone devices ready to take action. Their cloud space can hold many more photos, and all of their Facebook friends are looking forward in knowing about their trip. They even considered a camp space that has their own wifi connections that is accessible within a ten mile radius from the campgrounds! Their on-the-grid will be indeed off the hook!
NEWS AND REVIEWS
Theate 68 of North Hollywood brings back for a return engagement, the world premier production of I’M NOT A COMEDIAN…I’M LENNY BRUCE, written by Ronnie Marmo & Jason M. Burns and stars Ronnie Marmo as the name comic that spoke for his right for free speech, performing monologues that used “dirty” words and phrases, as well as being influnced by the three loves of his life that brought as much joy to him as it did with pain and sorrow.
Ronnie as Lenny begins his tale as the way it ended with the man born Leonard Alfred Schneider, telling his audience that his humble beginning was started through his experience of the divorce of his parents; A father he barley knew, and his mother Sally. She was a dancer playing in small clubs around New York City where Lenny made his first appearance. But those appearances lead to other notions. His material consisted of using terms and subject matter that were considered offensive at the time in the 1950’s, the same era that saw the dawn of modern comedy. However, Lenny would not give up, even though the local authorities were after him. But outside of his mother were two others he admired, Honey Harlow, a professional stripper that would become his wife, and their only child, daughter Brandy who was dubbed Kitty. These people brought Lenny as a person that would eventually become alone in his world, while those in charge with his free speech appeals in the courts would have him convicted and nearly condemned.
In this performance, Ronnie plays the part of Lenny in a very uncanny method, mimicking each and every one of his mannerisms, from the way he spoke to the gestures he presented as on stage and off. Through its ninety minute running time, one will hear Rommie as Lenny Bruce the comic, and Lenny Bruce the freedom fighter that used words and expressionism as his weapons. Joe Mantegna directs this show that is extremely tight and never settles itself down from its opening moment to its finish, bringing the entire performance within a near full circle.
Lenny Bruce himself died of a drug overdose in August of 1966, some fifty-one years ago. Since his passing, many other stand up comics attempted to follow within his legacy telling gags and monologues that was forced upon subjects too taboo to discuss to a so-called “family” audience. In today’s post modern world, Lenny may not realize that what he got in so much trouble for would be considered as “so what else in new?” Routines that comic of note, as well as ones that has hit to hit the big time, would utter in their performances. For those that were lucky to see Lenny do his thing in person, or perhaps see him in his very few TV appearances (heavily censored for the time), this show is a parallel. For the rest of the public that knew of him way after the fact, Ronnie Marmo’s presentation as Lenny fulfills as its closest comparison. He’s a comic. He’s a fighter to what should be one’s right. He’s a husband and father. And he’s the one and only…Lenny Bruce!!
I AM NOT A COMEDIAN…I’M LENNY BRUCE. presented by and performs at Theatre 68, 5112 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood, until September 17th. SHowtimes are Friday and Saturday nights at 8:00 PM, and Sunday afternoons at 3:00 PM. For ticket reservations visit online at http://www.Plays411.com/LennyBruce, or http://www.Theatre68.com
A portion of proceeds from this performance will go toward the Lenny Bruce Memorial Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit charity that provide funding to those that have limited or no financial reserves to obtain treatment for substance addiction. The foundation is run by Brandy “Kitty” Bruce.
For further details, visit http://www.LennyBruce.org
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ACCESSIBLY LIVE OFF-LINE (C) 2017 Linear Cycle Productions. All rights reserved. The views and opinions are those of the writers, and not necessarily of the staff and management. ‘Nuff said!