Monday, April 2, 2018

Welcome to Maple Street

Maple Street street sign from The Twilight Zone
Welcome to Millennial on Maple Street.  The title of this blog came after watching "The Monsters are Due on Maple Street." This is recognized as Episode No. 22 on The Twilight Zone, an anthology series with an original air date spanning 1959-1964. Rod Serling served as the show's creator, executive producer, head writer, host and narrator. This particular episode debuted on March 4, 1960.

I'm not a television nor movie junkie. I can't recall watching a television series throughout its entirety. Atypical for a 31-year-old. My last theatrical viewings occurred approximately one decade ago with Wanted and The Dark Knight. My collegiate entertainment marketing group decided upon Wanted for a class project. That was my sole purpose for seeing it. I'd like to believe that a movie plotted around a curving bullet is the dumbest thing ever, except, well, hit the entrance music for Bananas in Pajamas, Boo Bah, and basically every Christian children's television show.

Marketing 101: make 'em stupid while they're young so they're more easily marketable as adults.

Sitting couch-potatoed for an extended period of timeeven 30 minutes—isn't enjoyable. Few television programs can keep me seated beyond that without an irresistible urge to do something else. A significant sports event, nostalgic cartoons like Hey Arnold!, Attitude and Ruthless Aggression WWF/E eras, and pre-color era television shows that thrived on exceptional storytelling and acting prowess will attract my attention over today's ritzy-and-glitzy submissions.

Cue The Twilight Zone

My first experience with this series occurred when I haphazardly came across a non-colored show during late Sunday night on NBC Nashville (WSMV-TV). I was roaming through the living room. The television hadn't been powered off following a Sunday Night Football telecast. I don't remember the specific episode. I was just baffled as to why a major network was broadcasting a show that appeared as if it was more than half-a-century past its time—which it was. 

It didn't take long before I purchased a five-season series set and started indulging on Season 1. Forget 30 minutes: my butt was glued for hours on end. Each episode had a unique moral and a closing narration with its own take. Financial difficulties forced me to sell the set. I've since repurchased it and will continue with Season 2.

My favorite episode isn't "The Monsters are Due on Maple Street." Earning that honor is "I Shot an Arrow into the Air." Maybe an awkward choice but it has always stuck out to me. Ask me this question a few months later? That could change. Too many quality nominations to make a definitive selection.

I find myself applying episodes into real life and hypothetical quandaries. Paranoia from daily fantasy sports had me recalling Franklin Gibbs and his frustrations with the gambling machine from "The Fever." The Free Beer and Hot Wings radio show asked a hypothetical "You have two options for living: 50 years with happiness or eternal life with sadness." Springing to mind were the episodes "Long Live Walter Jameson" and "Escape Clause." Each story represented an individual who'd eventually prefer expiration than continuing with their eternal life capabilities.

Moving forward. Maybe Millennial on Maple Street implies that this blog is a Twilight Zone community. Not necessarily the case. One of my objectives is to use episodes and associate them with how they relate to society nearly three scores after their creation. But the primary purpose is to utilize this space as a personal blog for my ideas and musings.

Two primary components exist for why this blog is named Millennial on Maple Street. The obvious one: I'm one of them evil millennials whose sole purpose is to divide humankind. Clay Travis has a catchphrase for a unified America: First Amendment and Boobs. My millennial objective is to divide and conquer that unification process. Destroy the First Amendment along with the entire constitution. For the boobs: eternal imprisonment at United States Penitentiary, Administrative Maximum Facility (ADX). Give them hope for a better tomorrow with a capital punishment judgment. Then automatically appeal it for eternity.

Okay, not really. I'm just using my twisted imagination to prove my millennial status.

Part two: nothing symbolizes Maple Street more than the evolution of the Internet. Millions of Tommy's are posting their conspiracy theories. The public must decide on what's true. What fulfills their agendas, biases and prejudices.  Visit any traffic-heavy comments section and witness its mob-like citizens—much like the Maple Street citizens—call for the firing squad at dawn. Execution before trial among people who are starving to label others with a verdict, "Your an idiot."

With few alterations. One after another. One after another.

I'm just a millennial on the Internet. And that in itself gives me the "You have reached another dimension" feeling.

Newsflash, America: it's time to get off this street. Join me as I take a stroll down to a more friendly place about two blocks down the road, from 300 to 123...