When the homes fall down and the hospitals fall down and the presidential palace falls down, it puts everything in our lives in instant perspective. The earthquake that ripped through Haiti this week has left rubble, dust, blood and tears in its wakes. The call for help has gone out across the globe, though every technology available. Literally, you can now just lift one finger to help by texting 90999 with the message “HAITI” to donate $10 to the Red Cross. It’s so easy, it almost feels like cheating.
Celebrities have rallied support, the President has pledged support. Hillary Clinton called the level of devastation “biblical.” I don’t pray to any particular god, but I’ve asked the universe to help those hurt, scared and alone. More than 100,000 souls feared lost, maybe some 3 million more in desperate need.
In times like this when the enormity of the world’s suffering come crashing down around us, I’m reminded why I look to entertainment in the first place. Diversion. Joy. Meaning. Beauty. We can’t always find one, let alone all of them, in the things we consume. But sometimes, if we’re really lucky, the art we enjoy takes us through a rabbit hole of imagination and back again to the other side to make our waking lives more vivid and clear. We can’t ever escape the world’s problems, but maybe we can understand them just a little bit better.