“Ich habe 422 Freunde und bin doch einsam.” Und nach Julia Engelmann kommt nun Gary Turk. Mit seinem Klagegedicht “Look up” hat der bislang eher unbekannte englische Schriftsteller und Regisseur anscheinend ebenso einen Nerv seiner Generation getroffen, wie die junge Bremer Poetry-Slammerin vor einigen Wochen: Turks Video in dem er sich über die modernen Kommunikations- und Unterhaltungstechnologien beklagt, über den Verlust von” Beziehungen in der echten Welt”, die “Unfähigkeit, sich ohne iPad zu amüsieren” oder auch über “die stummen Menschen, die nur noch auf Bildschirme starren” erobert die Sozialen Netzwerke im Sturm.
Fast 20 Millionen Klicks hat das Werk innerhalb weniger Tage auf Youtube eingesammelt – und auch wenn einiges darin arg pathetisch und überdramatisiert vorgetragen wird (wie von einigen Kritikern auch schon beklagt) schafft es Turk anscheinend doch perfekt, die Gefühle von vielen Menschen zu beschreiben, die sich nach mehr (oder anderem) sehnen, als What’s-App-Chats, Cat-Content oder Facebook-Likes. Sinnigerweise ist die Botschaft, die da jetzt millionenfach verbreitet wird, wohl beides: Klage und Anklage zugleich.
Und hier ist der gesamte Text nochmals zum Nachlesen:
“Look up” von Gary Turk
I have four-hundred-and-twenty-two friends, yet I am lonely. I speak to all of them everyday, yet none of them really know me.
The problem I have sits in the spaces between looking into their eyes or at a name on a screen. I took a step back and opened my eyes, I looked around to realize this media we call social is anything but.
When we open our computers, and it’s our doors we shut. All this technology we have it’s just an illusion. Community companionship a sense of inclusion yet, when you step away from this device of delusion, you awaken to see a world of confusion.
A world where we’re slaves to the technology we mastered, where information gets sold by some rich greedy bastard. A world of self interest, self image, self promotion. Where we all share our best bits, but, leave out the emotion.
Were at ‘almost happy’ with an experience we share, but is it the same if no one is there? Be there for your friends and they’ll be there too, but no one will be if a group message will do.
We edit and exaggerate, crave adulation. We pretend not to notice the social isolation. We put our words into order and turn our lives a-glistening. We don’t even know if anyone is listening!
Being alone isn’t a problem let me just emphasize; if you read a book, paint a picture, or do some exercise. You’re being productive and present not reserved and recluse. You’re being awake and attentive and putting your time to good use.
So when you’re in public, and you start to feel alone. Put your hands behind your head, step away from the phone! You don’t need to stare at the menu, or a your contact list. Just talk to one another, learn to coexist.
I can’t stand to hear the silence of a busy commuter train when no one want’s to talk for the fear of looking insane. We’re becoming unsocial, it no longer satisfies to engage with one another, and look into someone’s eyes. We’re surrounded by children, who since they were born, have watched us living like robots, who now think it’s the norm.
It’s not very likely you’ll make worlds greatest dad, if you can’t entertain a child without using an iPad. When I was a child, i’d never be home. Be out with my friends on our bikes we’d roam. I’d wear holes on my trainers, and graze up my knees. We’d build our own clubhouse, high up in the trees.
Now the parks so quiet, it gives me a chill. See no children outside and the swings hanging still. Theres no skipping, no hopscotch, no church and no steeple. We’re a generation of idiots, smart phones and dumb people.
So look up from your phone, shut down display. Take in your surroundings, make the most of today. Just one real connection is all it can take, to show you the difference that being there can make.
Be there in the moment, when she gives you the look, that you remember forever as ‘when love overtook’. The time she first held your hand, or first kissed your lips, the time you first disagreed and you still love her to bits.
The time you don’t have to tell hundreds of what you’ve just done. Because you want to share this moment with just this one. The time you sell you sell your computer, so you can buy a ring, for the girl of your dreams, who is now the real thing.
The time you want to start a family, and the moment when, you first hold your little girl, and get to love again. The time she keeps you up at night, and all you want is rest. And the time you wipe away the tears as your baby flees the nest.
The time your baby girl returns, with a boy for you to hold, and the time he calls you granddad and makes you feel real old. The time you’ve taken all you’ve made, just by giving life attention. And how you’re glad you didn’t waste it, by looking down at some invention.
The time you hold your wife’s hand, sit down beside her bed, you tell her that you love her and lay a kiss upon her head. She then whispers to you quietly as her heart gives a final beat, that she’s lucky she got stopped by that lost boy in the street.
But none of these times ever happened, you never had any of this. When you’re too busy looking down, you don’t see the chances you miss.
So look up from your phone, shut down those displays, we have a final act existence a set number of days. Don’t waste your life getting caught in the net, because when the end comes there’s nothing worse than regret. I’m guilty too of being part of this machine, this digital world, we are hear but not seen.
Where we type as we talk, and we read as we chat. Where we spend hours together without making eye-contact. So don’t give into a life where you follow the hype. GIve people your love, don’t give them your ‘like’. Disconnect from the need to be heard and defined, go out into the world leave instructions behind.
Look up from your phone. Shut down that display. Stop watching this video. Live life the real way.