Wednesday, May 8, 2013

TNG: Frame of Mind

It seems like the fear of losing one's mind is pretty common. Unfortunately this is exactly what happens to Riker in "Frame of Mind."

In the episode, Riker is rehearsing for a play while also preparing for a dangerous away mission. He's stressed out and worried that he's not up for the job when, the next thing he knows, he's in an alien mental institution where they insist that his entire life onboard the Enterprise is a fantasy. The whole episode continually shifts between Riker's fractured realities. He fights against the idea that he isn't really a commander of the flagship of the Federation but eventually begins to relent--maybe he is a deranged murderer recovering from a mental breakdown.

Although in the past I have been particularly bothered by this darker episode, this time I felt like I was immune. I got through the whole thing and wasn't upset in the least. Then, I remembered that I had to go down to the management office in my apartment building and ask about a policy change. I got downstairs and realized that the woman who'd initially showed us the apartment hadn't been around for a while. In fact, I realized I hadn't heard from her since I agreed to take the place. As I got down to the lobby I thought, "Maybe she's not on the show anymore."

My train of thought chugged along while I quietly posited scenarios wherein the show-runner decided to write her out. Maybe she was too fussy. Maybe she wanted too much money or wouldn't learn her lines. I pictured her "on the set" of Apartment Office, checking her lipstick in a hand mirror with an open teleplay on the desk as a shadowey boss approached with a pink slip. That's when my train finally stopped and I realized I was standing on Platform Bonkers in Crazy Town Station.

Basically, I've been watching so much TV lately that my already tenuous grasp on reality has shifted to the point that my brain pretends that the entire world is a television show. Unlike Riker, I'm not particularly worried about this development. Besides, what I'm most concerned about is the fact that, when I got there, the apartment office was closed. After all, it's sweeps!

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1 comment:

  1. LOL! I have a friend who lives his whole life like he's in a television show. He even picks out the appropriate songs for specific times.


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