Monday, October 16, 2006

the electronic hearth

TAing lighting class today. About 20 minutes ago, I became antsy, need to stretch the old gams. Pulled my hood up, braved the dreary teary day, and walked to the Spyhouse. Bought my coffee, flirted with the barista (as I am often fond of doing, especially the pretty girls) and went on my merry way back to class, with my neck pulled into my scarf, sipping coffee and smoking as I went. Upon arriving back at class I noticed the lights were all off. Struck, as we say in the industry. The kids (honestly most of them are older than me but it is really fun to pretend that I am old news) were huddled around something, Ralph lecturing, but all in the dark. Curious, I step in the studio. Ralph is demonstrating flicker-boxes, in a trick lighting unit, which do what it may sound like they do; they make lights flicker at randomly generated intervals. Oh, I was so very much pleased by this sight. The pupils congregated around the electronic hearth. All of them, mesmerized. Ralph was speaking, but no eyes fell on him. All of them, locked on the deceptive glow of the burning embers of tungsten. Incandescent flame is truly as magical as the unbridled ancient version of the same.

Even still, on break, with most of the class disbursed over the school, pissing, smoking, emailing, there are a few that cannot pull away, that continue to silently stare, allowing me to watch them, their muscles relaxing, and eyes losing their focus, going back far back in time dreaming of blood and steak.

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