For all I know, the Twilight Zone marathon (original 1950s-60s iteration) on Syfy Channel could still be broadcasting. It certainly underscored many of our household activities on New Year’s weekend. As I stirred blackeyed peas, unhooked tree ornaments, and dragged boxes of lights back up the attic ladder, Rod Serling was all the while demonstrating his hypnotic appeal.
Who could pay complete attention to anything else–or imagine changing the channel–when William Shatner, Art Carney, Charles Bronson, Martin Landau, and a host of other acting luminaries were embroiled in time travel, eerie parallels, and paranormal hijinks, usually culminating in a “gotcha” conclusion laced with irony?
Production values have evolved, but the cerebral creepiness of the Zone still sets a high bar for television entertainment.
It also provides a great model for self-improvement in the coming year. Instead of composing an annual “to do” list meant to transform ourselves into other beings–organized, punctual, socially brilliant–we could behave like Twilight Zone protagonists. Just envision creative strategies instead of a personality overhaul.
Like Serling’s heroes and heroines, we may prove amazingly resourceful in dealing with challenges that beset us. Those characters would have used the library and internet, too, had those options only been offered:
- Baffled by financial/investment jargon? Try courses in Investing 101: Stocks, Bonds, & Mutual Funds or Personal Finance 101: How to Manage Your Money by going to the library’s home page and enrolling in Universal Class for free.
- Frustrated because your job provides few opportunities for exercising your creativity? Find inspiration and instructions for spare time projects in the Hobbies and Crafts Reference Center database.
- Tired of always being the last one in your group to hear about trendy books, especially those inspiring movies coming soon to your area? Take a look at the Book Movement website and check out EarlyWord‘s “Books to Movies & TV” feature.
Don’t get me wrong: January goal setting presents an uplifting opportunity. It’s just been my experience that a problem-solving approach fares better than, say, unrealistic vows like permanently banishing that on-again off-again seven pounds.
And would you believe that a co-worker just walked in with a plate of double chocolate cheesecake squares? To my credit, I don’t recall saying “yes” (at least verbally). My hand simply reached toward it, as though I had been transported into another dimension, in which a hand could have a mind of its own and I was powerless to stop it. It was eerie!