I went to a play the other night and the person next to me was recording it with their phone. Besides being annoying because the light from the phone was very bright in the darkened theater, the person recording it didn’t really get to enjoy the play. At the intermission, I asked this person why they were recording it, and they said that they wanted to share it with friends.
So rather than friends going to a live performance, one person records it so they can view it on a tiny screen as a virtual experience. Have we come to this, that the virtual experience trumps the actual experience?
Last week, we used the elevated tatami tables that Mr. SweetPersimmon made for us. Because of where we set up the table, the sunlight came through the windows and illuminated the temaeza as the teishu was making koicha. It was like a bright spotlight on the teabowl. Imagine this: as the teishu scooped the tea and turned it out of the chaire, little poofs of the powdered tea arose from the center of the teabowl. The chaire itself revealed a rainbow of colors in the glaze. And even as the hishaku was steaming from the kettle, when the hot water was poured into the teabowl, it sparkled. Inside the teabowl, you could see the intense green of the matcha as it was kneaded into an incredibly smooth and shiny thick tea.
Do you need a video to share this experience? I can replay this whenever I like, without a device. It is all in the mind’s eye.