168 // Emotion Free Zone

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In the movie ‘The Matrix’, the hero is special, and one of a kind. To convey this message Hollywood took the unusual step of actually trying to create a subtext, they did this by calling their chief protagonist Neo, which is cleverly an anagram of one, as in ‘the one’.

Ooo Deep.

After watching the movie though you cannot fail to come to the conclusion that he is the one, and a rather special one. You could argue that he should be special, given that he could be given any skill known to mankind in the space of a few seconds, but that would a tad trite.

You have to feel for Neo though, he was thrust into a new ‘reality’, and in a short space of time he was shown so much that the mental strain must have been immense. That is because despite its drama, crash, bang, shooty shooty stuff it does cover an interesting philosophical area. It explores our understanding of reality, and how we come to the conclusion that this is our reality, how do we know what we know? and how can that be proved? The deep questions put to him could drive you to the edge of sanity, just ask Ludwig Wittgenstein*.

Although in fairness to Neo, even Ludwig didn’t have to deal with the possibility of no spoons in a era that has Ben & Jerry’s ice cream. Life is cruel. I’m sure it bothered Neo on some level, but I can’t verify that as it wasn’t covered extensively in the movie.

One of the reasons Neo is different, and more specifically ‘the one’ is because he rarely runs away. He would face up to his challenges, regardless of size. He would tackle them head on, even when the odds looked so slim, and this culminated in two of the most iconic movie scenes of all time*.

Neo first realises his supreme ability when a special agent tries to shoot him and he falls back dodging the bullets. The second more uplifting scene is when he is shot at in a hallway, where he rather ominously for the special agent, says ‘no.’ as he proceeds to stop the bullets mid air.  Stopping bullets is certainly impressive but it is the dodging of them that I am more interested in – because it links better with my day.

Today was a tough day, an emotional day. Not necessarily for me but for my girlfriend. She will freely admit she is an emotional person but today was especially tough. That is because it was not only the last day of term (she is a school teacher), but her last working day at that school – we leave Vienna next week. But wait, theres more. After work we met up with her best friends here for a BBQ and had a lovely evening, but we all knew there were going to be teary moments as they said goodbye to each other.

This is my weak point, my achilles heel if you like, although as weak as my achilles are, they are way stronger than this weak point; emotion. In fact, I have two achilles heels and I have two personal weak points; emotion and goodbyes. I can’t deal with them, I can’t be around them. It makes me feel as awkward as a dolphin on a flight to Colombia, instead of its intended destination Columbia.

I slip away from parties early, I travel at awkward times so theres less people around, I invent reasons to dash away abruptly, and basically, whatever it takes to avoid a long protracted goodbye, I’ll do it. Add into the mix other people being emotional and we have an almost full house – I’d have snuck off early out the back, obviously.

Tonight, I didn’t channel the special one. That is because he is not the special one. I am. Yes, Neo had to stop bullets and dodge bullets but that is because he put himself in terrible situations. You should always play to your strengths, and whereas I can’t dodge bullets – or emotional goodbye BBQs, I can stand awkwardly next to my clearly upset girlfriend not really knowing what to do.

So it was essentially the equivalent of Neo being asked to go fight Agent Smith, only for him to refuse, and then be told he has to. He eventually goes, but very belatedly, and deep down he’s hoping that Agent Smith doesn’t actually turn up, but he does turn up so he calls his mates and says ‘ah sorry guys I’d love to fight him but I’m on Elmond Street and theres a phone box right here, if I go fight him I’d have to go all the way there and then back again, plus its raining. Tell you what, lets just all get back; have a cup of hot chocolate, warm slippers and we can deal with this Agent Smith thing another day’.

It is cowardice really. There is no reason to want to avoid emotion and goodbyes that much, especially when it is only people wanting to show the care they have for others and the pain they will have, or already have, with them not being there. Therefore I shall change my name to Mr. Fermion Foe Oat*.

Paul Green

*Probably the 20th Centuries greatest philosophers who drove himself to the point of insanity. Kind of inferred that in the post really, so this has just turned into one big serving of Belgian Waffle. 

*I haven’t seen every movie ever made to accurately state that but it is probably true. I mean he stopped bullets? What more do you want. You people make me sick. 

*Bonus points for figuring out the anagram.

Read more, its good for you.

About Me

Guest Post by Nicole Sundays: Finally, Proof That Thinking is Bad for You

162 // Where Does Your Creativity Come From?

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19 Comments

  1. Varnika Jain

    I doubt it’s an anagram though. Neo in itself means new, revived or in modern form, which is quite in keeping with their theory of The One. They didn’t need it to be an anagram, the name itself meant what they wanted to convey. That’s what I think. 😊

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Paul Green

      It is definitely an anagram, as the letters can be re-arranged to make ‘one’, but as for the deep meaning, definitely don’t take anything I say as the true haha. Everything is said with heavy sarcasm and little research.

      Like

  2. Anne Clare

    With no spoon, all ice cream would just need to be made into milkshakes, which I’d call a win. Provided there are still straws…
    Goodbyes are awful! Standing awkwardly with your girlfriend when you dread them so much may not be bullet stopping, but it’s not bad. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. elbycloud

    Mr. Fear of Emotion. I hate anagrams almost as much as I hate giving up.
    I watched the Matrix last week. I was disappointed. It did not measure up to my memory and the tech was old. My husband had forgotten everything and thought it was amazing. So, next time, prophylactic lobotomy prior to re-screening.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Paul Green

      You figured that out fast, quicker than I made it that is for sure. I haven’t watched it in a long time, Maybe I should watch it with your husband he sounds more fun – haha.

      As for your guest post by the way, I will probably put it up tomorrow, I haven’t actually got around to reading it yet but I’m very confident it will be marvellous.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. S. Hansen

    Oh man, emotions are so awkward. You know that one character in TV and films that has to deal with a crying person and they just sort of pat them on the head and awkwardly say ‘there, there’?
    That’s me…
    I’m kinda dead inside. One of my childhood cats died yesterday and to be honest I found that more sad than when either of my grandparents died :/ Ssh don’t tell my parents…

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Paul Green

      I read that firstly as ‘One of my childhood friends died yesterday’ and I was like well being sad is very understandable. Then I realised the word cat and burst out laughing – sorry to your friends cat. Even though it made me laugh.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. S. Hansen

        Well it was our cat but I don’t consider it my cat because my cat was one of her kittens. You can laugh away though, I did the seven stages of grief in about 0.7 seconds :p

        Like

  5. helentastic67

    Ah! To be young…….I imagine for your girlfriend being a teacher she would be very close to her students and if you move regularly it’s like leaving your family behind each time. I admire you both for the lives you lead and the wisdom you share with the rest of us who can’t travel. Cheers,H

    Liked by 1 person

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