16 January 2013

An Ode to Oddness

When I came across this video, it was presented in a way that made it seem like just another video of somebody showing off some dumb thing they'd invented. Because of that I almost passed it by, since the invention itself (a spring-loaded wrist mount for an iPhone) isn't terribly impressive. But I'm thankful to whatever tiny demon of whimsy prodded me to watch it, because while it starts off predictably enough—a diagram of the gadget, a demonstration of its use—it quickly veers off course to become something else entirely. The anticipated explanation of the invention and its creation never comes, and instead the video somehow shifts into a series of awkward and absurd vignettes that are only vaguely centered around the device. I've already yammered on about it too much, so just watch it for yourself:

It's a bit pathetic and borderline creepy at times, but I love pretty much everything about it: the pacing, the shots, the non sequitur acts of weirdness. The uploader on YouTube, morishowta, only has a handful of other videos, and after watching them I get the impression that he's self-aware and that he's being weird and pathetic on purpose. If I were to find out that wasn't the case then that would probably change my opinion of his videos drastically, but as it stands I think they're a queerly beautiful little ode to being an outcast.

Like I said, he only has a few videos so far, and it's well worth it to watch them all. After seeing this one I went to the beginning and watched from there, and in doing so you can see how they start off somewhat normal and then get progressively weirder, which I also think is great. I wish I understood Japanese so I could get the full picture, but I think there's also something to be said for the added sense of foreignness that the language barrier adds to his already-confounding antics. In addition to several iterations of his iPhone-deploying gadget, there are also a couple where he builds grotesque "girlfriends" out of junk, which manage not to come off as creepily as you might assume. :P

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