Where We're Not Looking

Magicians, especially those who work in close-up magic, use direction and misdirection techniques. The performer wants the audience to always look somewhere specific. We should be eagle-eying his left hand while he pockets a playing card with his right. The coin he's about to take out of the lady's ear? It's in his vest, but we can't stop watching the volunteer.

The concept applies to a wider realm than magic, and certainly to our daily lives. I can pass the same coffee stain on my floor three days in a row because I walk through my kitchen in the same way every morning and look at the same things in the same order. Where we're not looking isn't simply a magical concept; it can be about falling into our little habits and sleepwalking through stuff.

I can be guilty of that, for sure, but I try to stay curious about what's just beyond the corner of my eye. And I work to bring that spirit to the Wilfair world.

I suppose Fair Finley could be a pretty cosseted young lady who obsessed over guests' shoes and enjoyed a level of (unearned) power and respect that came from her position.

But that's not the direction that holds Fair's gaze. Shinier objects don't hold her attention, but the humble motel across the way does. Gomery catches her attention, because he's cute, for sure, but she's also looking at who he is and the harder road he faces. And speaking of "faces," Fair favors Gomery's forearms, when the usual direction to first look in might be a guy's visage. (Gomery has that going, too, of course, but that's not how we are introduced to his physical attributes.)

In short, I'm forever asking myself one question: Where is the obvious place the characters would look here? Then I choose a different route for our Wilfair people. If the magician is about to pull a coin from a lady's ear, and it is really in his vest, I want the Wilfair people to watch the stagehand texting near the curtains, or the magician's untied shoelace, or the couple canoodling in the theater's back row.

Or each other.

The lamp pictured below is in Disneyland, in the Haunted Mansion, but it is behind visitors as they walk through the attraction.

I always turn around to admire this particular lamp because it will forever be behind people and a bit out of sight. It's my reminder to not ignore the coffee stain three days in a row and to not let the Wilfair people only care about the things directly front of them.

Life-sleepwalkers are not a part of the Wilfair world. Actual sleepwalking is permitted, of course, if everyone is in their pajamas, all cute and cozy.


Ginny said...

Love the lamp! I'm a huge disneyland nerd and I could spend all day just looking for the little details there! :) I was going to ask on the adult beverage post if you'd ever been go Trader Sam's bar at the Disneyland Hotel. It is sooo fun!

Wilfair Book said...

Ginny! You won't believe this, but I have a Disneyland post coming up. And I am WILD about Trader Sam's! We should have a drink there sometime. In fact, I'll be there this weekend. :)

We need to talk DL. What's your favorite ride?

Ginny said...

I honestly can't choose just one! Haunted Mansion, Splash Mountain and Thunder Mountain are probably top of the list. Oh, and Peter Pan and the teacups! I had an absolute blast on Mater's Junkyard Jamboree last summer!

I would love yo meet at Trader Sam's sometime! We don't have a trip planned now but I'll let you know!

Wilfair Book said...

Ohhhh. I'm a Haunted Mansion girl all the way! Love me some Big Thunder, too. I do like Splash Mountain but, erf, that last huge drop. Any secrets on how I can handle it better? I get so worked up!

Peter Pan is way up there for me, too. Don't you love the room filled with stars? That's my favorite part.

Also, I LOVELOVELOVE Tower of Terror. Obviously, a scary hotel! It really inspires me. The design and everything! I'm going to post about it soon.

Let's meet at Trader Sam's for sure. Say the word next time you're over here!

Jamila said...

I love the sentiment of this post. No Life-Sleepwalking! I'm going to make it my battle cry, akin to Fair's anti-mint-dish crusade.

Wilfair Book said...

I think we all slip into life-sleepwalking now and then. It's human. But I try and shake myself out of it, with varying results, pretty often.

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