Monday, March 9, 2009

Momentary - Inside Caboose's Mind

I've been thinking a lot about imagination and memory. For anyone who is unaware, I'm a big fan of the machinima series Red Vs. Blue. I think the guys at Rooster Teeth who put it together have, knowingly or unknowingly, presented us with some fantastic existential insights and some wonderfully imaginative imagery that can be used in philosophic thought.

I'm not a huge fan of so-called "pop-philosophy", but I think that insights grow out of different sources for different people. The value should be in the thoughts that come out of the material, not in the material itself.

One of the really great gags introduced in Season 2 of RvB is Caboose's Mind. It's presented as a strange world in which there are copies of the characters as they appear from Caboose's point of view. The characters return several times and the Mindscape has changed based on external events. Caboose's memory of Church is killed by O'Malley in their first visit, which results in him forgetting who Church is.

What do you suppose your mindscape might be like? Do you, like Caboose, have stereotyped memories of your friends that are the way you think of them? Are your memories in some kind of framework like this that alters your recall of them?

Try calling up memories of images. Where are you seeing them? Try sounds and voices. Where are you hearing them? Try tastes and smells. Try touch. What sense perception are you employing to recreate these sensations? How long can you make them last? What are your memories like? How specific are your memories: visually, audibly, olfactory?


P.Proteus1035 said...

I wouldn't doubt that it's so far off in truth. I have repeatedly been the victim of this within a group of the closest people I know. People who should, and do, know me better than the character I sometimes play through my life tend to see me ONLY in the narrow view of my "sometimes self" in a way I would expect from co-workers. It's as if they've made this caricature of me that is impervious to the truth of my actions or the millions of subtle insights into who I really am that I have revealed. I think it's an excellent and accurate portrayal of how people see each other.

B said...

One of the most interesting things for me is that, in his own mind, Caboose is brilliant and eloquent, unlike in the real world where he's kind of a moron. It's interesting to wonder which self you really are. Are you the self that is percieved outside of you who you will never know? Are you the self inside that noone else will ever know? Are you some weird amalgamation of the two?

Aristotle posited that the soul and the intellect are one and the same, such that humans are beings "at work being themselves". Proper human activity for Aristotle is the exertion of reason to make choices (intellection and contemplation basically).

P.Proteus1035 said...

"You never know just how you look through other people's eyes."

I think there are some excellent examples of this in yours and my daily lives. People who believe themselves the image of greatness that are secretly mocked behind their back. In fact, is there any among our group who DON'T fill that profile?

We all have an image in our head of who we are that is not... quite right. Most of the time we live up to the image "who we want to be" but from time to time the actions of "who we are" come in direct opposition to those values we believe we exhibit causing a variable amount of dissonance within ourselves. The truly "better" people of this world turn that dissonance into change. The rest of us just sweep it under the rug and whistle while we walk away.