Last night I went with my friend Nina to a 4th of July party at her friend's house. This house happens to be located in an area of Los Angeles that is populated by lots of folks who very much enjoy their illegally obtained fireworks, let me tell you!
As dusk fell, we were assaulted from all sides by a variety of explosions, some of which were strong enough to rock the house. A palm tree about a block away caught fire, its top blazing like some kind of gigantic tropical candle until the LA Fire Dept. arrived to put it out. Even the presence of the fire department and cops didn't deter the neighbors from blasting away with stuff that must have been as powerful as sticks of dynamite.
Nina's friends have four cats, all of whom were in various states of distress throughout the melee. Most of them hid under the bed. But one responded in a weird way by becoming aggressive with those of us who weren't residents in his home.
Later that night I experienced a series of unpleasant dreams. Nina told me later she too had been unable to sleep much of the night. I'm certain the fireworks had a lot to do with this.
Watching the way the cats reacted to the noise and light, and watching my own reactions to it, I started thinking about the way we humans deliberately put ourselves into situations that cause our senses to react in violent ways. Fireworks shows, rock concerts, action movies, sporting events, video games, talk radio and a whole host of common forms of entertainment are geared at over-stimulating our senses. Even driving through a big city like Los Angeles is an exercise in sensory over-stimulation.
I don't think a bit of this kind of thing now and again does much irreparable damage. I believe the human body was designed to be able to handle a certain degree of sensory over-stimulation.
But we have developed a tremendous amount of technology designed to create and sustain a level of excitement we were certainly not designed to handle. We need to be careful with this stuff. It can be incredibly damaging to the nervous system.
So cool it with the boom-booms!