“Whose face are we shoving this musical in?”
“You don’t shove a musical in someone’s face, what are you talking about?”
“Yes, but who versus? Who are we doing it versus?”
This is a classic line that I see used a lot – generally, it’s used to express frustration at a story that has no conflict and no purpose to it; you don’t see it used a lot for Myazaki movies despite the lack of conflict because people generally see a point to them, but you do see it used for bad genre flicks. I use it for that, but I also tend to think of it when I see people who cannot seem to conceive of an action that doesn’t flip someone off somewhere. Most commonly, I think of it when I see people who don’t seem to know how to react to a work of art that doesn’t lay out who the bad guys are and/or who in the audience is supposed to be learning a lesson. Though I’ve also seen it in certain severely political people, whose every action seems dedicated to getting one over on Those Fuckers.
“What do we do with that information?”
Conversely, I find myself thinking of this line every time I’m given information I don’t know how to react to. I’ve gotten pretty good at recognising the practical application of things I learn, and sometimes I get some information I genuinely can’t find a use for; one of the biggest, strangest attempts at blowing my mind was when someone said that patriarchal forces began with agriculture, and all the evil of human history would have been avoided if we’d remained nomadic wanderers, and I was like… even if that’s true, I’m going to change literally none of my behaviour based on it – I’m certainly not going to stop relying on agriculture (“I mean, I physically can’t!”). That’s an extreme example, but there are so many judgement calls and observations that I’ve ended up pushing out of my brain with Charlie’s voice.
“How exactly do you view yourself within the context of our group?”
I always end up thinking of this line when I’m in the same situation as Dennis here – observing someone whose perception of themselves is rooted in a role they believe the universe has bestowed upon them that is actually just some personal obsession. I once saw a guy in the comments of a series of Mad Men articles who had made it his mission to correct every single person who interpreted the opening titles as a visual of Don committing suicide, and while I didn’t disagree, I thought it was a needless waste of effort where the best possible outcome was a few people interpreting the credits of a TV show differently. But to him, it was a mission from God. This was a particularly weird expression of behaviour I see all the time, where someone acts as if they and they alone were put on this planet to fight some Sisyphean battle with little to no benefit beyond being right about something.
“What do you think is happening right now?”
This one is related, in that I find myself thinking of it when seeing someone who seems totally and willfully disconnected from reality. I saw this guy the other day breaking down his very precise and utterly bonkers interpretation as to the meaning and purpose of ‘masculinity’ and ‘femininity’ in a way that suggested that, if he had ever interacted with either men or women, he had not taken in anything but the loosest idea of what they talked about, let alone actually did. I’m sure we’ve all wanted to yell this at someone every single day for the past four years, living as we do in a world where the shared reality ain’t what it used to be. In fact, it’s usually what I want to yell at fascists and other ideologues who no longer see the concrete thing in front of them but rather the idea they’ve come to know.
“Dun dun duh nuh, duh nuh.”
Mainly I end up thinking of this when I’m looking up information. Bow bow.