I did something new today. I decided to watch the football game on mute. As I learn more and more about the intricacies of the game, the more the play-by-play announcers grate on my nerves. Their lack of knowledge of the teams and obvious note-reading was always an insult to my intelligence. Now I realize that they didn’t care about that, as long as I left the sound on.
For a long time I had noticed that announcers, analysts, websites, blogs, and fans constantly spout the same memes about players, teams, etc. This is true everywhere but particularly in football. The groupthink is enormous. Putting the game on mute one time made me realize that every single narrative you take for granted, every “story”, actually doesn’t exist.
The technique is this. They infiltrate your headspace. You watch the game but they tell you what to focus on. They repeat the same words, storylines, opinions, etc. until they become yours. They highlight certain plays so you put your focus on the star (read: marketable) players. They create your opinion for you, and you don’t even know. It flies outside your radar. You think you’re watching the game but you’re not. Your focus is constantly being subconsciously pushed in whatever direction they choose.
Example: “Player A is in his third year out of little-known Y College; it has been an uphill battle for him to make the team and every rush shows his hard work and love of the game”. You watch the player take the handoff and go for 10 yards and think about what a great guy he is — meanwhile the camera zooms in to his helmet so you get a good look at his face. When you watch the game on mute, what really happens is this: The running back (Player A) lines up next to the fullback, the linebackers on the other team fall for a playaction pass due to a great fake by the quarterback, the fullback comes in and creams the safety and leaves a gaping hole for the running back (Player A) to run into, untouched, for an easy 10-yard gain.
But no, Player A is a hard worker so he gets 100% of the credit to the TV audience. Why, because your focus is on him. The NFL incorporates a sideline view as well that does not allow you to see the entire length of the field. This means that somewhere around 50% of what goes on on the field is hidden from the TV audience, making it even easier to twist and distort the narrative to whatever they want.
This does not stop at football or sports. This stretches straight into news broadcasts. Events happen and the networks decide to create the “news”. The media has become the “news”. An event happens and all of a sudden there are 50 cameras and crews around the event. They become part of the event. They push the narrative which ignites the audience. Suddenly the CEO of the company resigns, the police start investigating, protestors start protesting, and viewers start watching and talking. They have made something turn into SOMETHING. Sometimes even nothing turns into SOMETHING.
This relates to our message board like this. Anything that infiltrates your headspace affects where your focus goes. Your focus is everything you talk and think about it. Your focus is the only thing you know. If you’re in a social situation and you’re focusing on a narrative or life story of how you can never get girls, you don’t see the girl giving you the eye in the corner. Even if you see her you think about how she won’t like you once she gets to know you. Your behavior starts to come in line with this. The girl thinks “what the hell” and moves on. Your narrative creates something out of nothing.
If you just walked into that situation with the sound on mute, you would’ve seen a cute girl giving you the eye and went and said “hello” and taken it from there, reacting to the moment with the sound off.
A lot of what I said is a repeat of certain topics on this board such as being present, ignoring your life story, etc. But sometimes saying something a certain way helps people understand it better.