The meaning of a work of art – that is, the meaning intended by the artist, not the meaning assigned to it by the audience – is often a matter of context. Not just art, but human expression in general. It all boils down to context.
The thing I was going to write on my phone, before I was defeated by technology, was about how amazing phones are nowadays.
I went to school (K – 8) in the 80’s. In the early 80s, we had a party line because it was cheaper. If you picked up the phone at the wrong time, you could eavesdrop on your neighbors. Some of our neighbors and even some of our relatives still had party lines long after we upgraded to a private line.
Our phone was a beige box that hung on the wall. The handset had a long cord, and the base had a big dial on it that you had to crank around. You hated everyone with 9’s and 0’s in their phone number (that’s a Louis CK joke, folks). We had that same phone for well over a decade.
Our TV set also had dials. And knobs that could be pulled off and lost by children. And it had no remote. You had to get up and cross the entire room to change the channel or adjust the volume. But not having a remote didn’t matter as much, because our roof antenna only picked up maybe 5 channels on a clear day. Continue reading