06:18:27 pm on
Friday 12 Jul 2024

Too Much Detail
AJ Robinson

Back when the movie “Alien” came out, I didn’t want to see it. Just the preview and the advertisements scared the snot out of me. I knew the actual movie would give me nightmares for years!

"Alien" was an intense movie.

It was years before I saw “Alien,” and it was damn intense. The thing was, after the movie was all over, I realized that I hadn’t actually seen all that much. Most of the genuine chills were what I hadn’t seen. The filmmakers had been smart about that.

These days, what with the high-definition television sets we have, you can see every detail of every scene of anything you watch. Sometimes, that’s awesome. There was one time, when some people and I, did not appreciate it.

I was working a pool bar at Disney’s Grand Floridian Hotel. It is quite the awesome place; fancy, huge, beautiful and a bunch of other colourful adjectives. As it happened, they had just given the pool bar a makeover and it was slick and high-end technology.

The big item was the brand new super huge high-definition flat screen television that hung on the wall. The bottom edge was just about at the top of my head, so when I turned around and looked up, I truly got an eyeful. As it was Sunday, I, of course, had a football game on. On that screen, it almost looked like we were right there on the field with the players. The bar was full of men, of course; they were truly enjoying themselves as they watched the game.

Time passed. I served drinks. I fetched food for them. The occasional person walked up to the bar from the pool to get something. Kids wanted sodas or smoothies, women liked fruity cocktails and non-football fans got beers and other drinks. The little building, where I worked, had a full kitchen and so a lot of food went out to the guests.

Suddenly, I heard a shout from the television.

My back was to it and so I hadn’t seen what had happened. Then I saw all the men at the bar grimace.

It seemed something bad had taken place. I turned and looked up, and then it was my turn to grimace. They were showing a super slow-motion replay of a tackle that had just occurred. A quarterback sacked and I mean truly sacked.

As the image slowly moved across the screen, his body contorted into positions that defied logic and the physical limitations of the human form. Given the digital nature of the film and the high-definition technology being employed in the screen, we got to see every details of every micro-second of the event. The picture was so incredibly clear that we were able to see the quarterback’s face as the tackle took place.

The quarterback wore a pained expression; a very, very pained expression.

Mind you, I was pretty much nose-to-screen all during this and I had to turn away. I did so and saw the men at the bar. As the replay was played, repeatedly, everyone sat still, grimacing and squirming in their seats. All of us, every man there, we felt his pain.

Oh boy, did we feel it!

That was the day I learned that there are some instances where too much detail is not a good thing. I truly think I’d prefer watching “Alien,” again, before ever seeing a tackle in that much detail ever again. Ouch!


Combining the gimlet-eye of Philip Roth with the precisive mind of Lionel Trilling, AJ Robinson writes about what goes bump in the mind, of 21st century adults. Raised in Boston, with summers on Martha's Vineyard, AJ now lives in Florida. Working, again, as an engineeer, after years out of the field due to 2009 recession and slow recovery, Robinson finds time to write. His liberal, note the small "l," sensibilities often lead to bouts of righteous indignation, well focused and true. His teen vampire adventure novel, "Vampire Vendetta," will publish in 2020. Robinson continues to write books, screenplays and teleplays and keeps hoping for that big break.

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