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Look Up (Gary Turk)
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'Look Up' - A spoken word film for an online generation.

'Look Up' is a lesson taught to us through a love story, in a world where we continue to find ways to make it easier for us to connect with one another, but always results in us spending more time alone.

This media we call social is anything but.

The music in Look Up was made specially by New Desert Blues.


I have 422 friends, yet I am lonely.
I speak to all of them every day, yet none of them really know me.
The problem I have sits in the spaces between
Looking into their eyes, or at a name on a screen.

I took a step back and opened my eyes,
I looked around and realised
That this media we call social is anything but.
When we open our computers and it's our doors we shut

All this technology we have, it's just an illusion
Community companionship, a sense of inclusion
Yet when you step away from this device of delusion
You awaken to see a world of confusion.

A world where we're slaves to the technology we mastered
Where information gets sold by some rich greedy bastard
A world of self interest, self image, self promotion
Where we all share our best bits but, leave out the emotion.

We're at our most happy with an experience we share,
But is it the same if no-one is there?
Be there for your friends and they'll be there too,
But no-one will be if a group message will do.

We edit and exaggerate, crave adulation
We pretend not to notice the social isolation
We put our words into order and tint our lives a-glistening
We don't even know if anyone is listening

Being alone isn't a problem, let me just emphasize
If you read a book, paint a picture, or do some exercise
You're being productive and present, not reserved and recluse
You're being awake and attentive and putting your time to good use

So when you're in public, and you start to feel alone
Put your hands behind your head, step away from the phone
You don't need to stare at the menu, or at your contact list
Just talk to one another, learn to co-exist.

I can't stand to hear the silence of a busy commuter train
When no one wants to talk for the fear of looking insane.
We're becoming unsocial, it no longer satisfies
To engage with one another, and look into someone's eyes.

We're surrounded by children, who since they were born,
Have watched us living like robots, who now think it's the norm.
It's not very likely you'll make world's greatest dad,
If you can't entertain a child without using an iPad

When I was a child, I'd never be home
Be out with my friends, on our bikes we'd roam
I'd wear holes on my trainers, and graze up my knees
We'd build our own clubhouse, high up in the trees

Now the park's so quiet, it gives me a chill
See no children outside and the swings hanging still.
There's no skipping, no hopscotch, no church and no steeple
We're a generation of idiots, smart phones and dumb people.

So look up from your phone, shut down the display
Take in your surroundings, make the most of today
Just one real connection is all it can take
To show you the difference that being there can make.

Be there, in the moment that she gives you the look
That you remember forever as when love overtook
The time she first held your hand, or first kissed your lips
The time you first disagreed but you still love her to bits

The time you don't have to tell hundreds of what you've just done
Because you want to share this moment with just this one
The time you sell your computer, so you can buy a ring
For the girl of your dreams, who is now the real thing.

The time you want to start a family, and the moment when
You first hold your little girl, and get to fall in love again.
The time she keeps you up at night, and all you want is rest
And the time you wipe away the tears as your baby flees the nest.

The time your baby girl returns, with a boy for you to hold
And the time he calls you granddad and makes you feel real old.

The time you've taken all you've made, just by giving life attention.
And how you're glad you didn't waste it, by looking down at some invention.

The time you hold your wife's hand, sit down beside her bed,
You tell her that you love her and lay a kiss upon her head.
She then whispers to you quietly as her heart gives a final beat
That she's lucky she got stopped by that lost boy in the street.

But none of these times ever happened, you never had any of this.
When you're too busy looking down, you don't see the chances you miss.

So look up from your phone, shut down those displays
We have a finite existence, a set number of days
Don't waste your life getting caught in the net,
As when the end comes nothing's worse than regret.

I'm guilty too of being part of this machine,
This digital world, we are heard but not seen.
Where we type as we talk, and we read as we chat
Where we spend hours together without making eye contact

So don't give into a life where you follow the hype
Give people your love, don't give them your 'like'
Disconnect from the need to be heard and defined
Go out into the world, leave distractions behind.

Look up from your phone. Shut down that display. Stop watching this video. Live life the real way.

YET= Nevertheless

LONELY= Sad because you feel alone.

SITS= Is located.

SCREEN= The visual display of a computer or phone where we see the images or text.

ANYTHING BUT= (in this case:) Anything but social (we don't repeat "social" because we just said it).

SHUT= Close.

A SENSE OF INCLUSION= Feeling part of a group, feeling inside.

YET= Nevertheless; but.

DEVICE= A piece of machinery. In this case: a mobile phone.

DELUSION= The act of being deluded. You are deluded when you can't tell reality from fantasy.

MASTERED= To master a tool or machine is to control it, to be able to use it easily and effectively.

GREEDY= Always wanting more and more (especially more money).

BASTARD= An insult.

SELF INTEREST= When you are only interested in yourself, not on other people or things.

SELF IMAGE= The idea you have of your own appearance (if you feel beautiful, ugly, fat, attractive, etc).

SELF PROMOTION= Making other people think you are important; telling other people about yourself.

LEAVE OUT= If you leave out something, you forget about it, don't mention it (but you should).

WE'RE AT OUR MOST HAPPY WITH= We feel happiest with, our happiest moment is when...

A GROUP MESSAGE= A message you send to a group of people: just one message reach many people, so it is not something personal for one particular person.

WILL DO= Is enough.

CRAVE= Really really really want or need.

ADULATION= Praise (when other people say you are wonderful and fantastic)

PRETEND= To give a false appearance.

ISOLATION= The act of being isolated. You are isolated when you have no contact with other people.

TINT= Change or influence a little.

A-GLISTENING= Glistening = Shining a bit. If your life glistens, it looks fantastic.

PRODUCTIVE= If you are productive, you are doing something useful.

PRESENT= If you are present, you are there.

RECLUSE= Hidden, enclosed, imprisoned.

PUTTING YOUR TIME TO GOOD USE= Using your time to do something good.

STARE= Look fixedly, paying a lot of attention, almost without blinking.

CO-EXIST= Live together.

I CAN'T STAND= If you can't stand something, you find it horrible.

COMMUTER TRAIN= A train for commuters. A commuter is a person who lives in one city/village and works in another city, so they have to travel to work every day.

LOOKING= Having a certain appearance. If you look sad, your appearance is telling people that you are sad.

INSANE= Crazy.

ENGAGE WITH= If you engage with another person, you interact (do something) with them.

THE NORM= The normal thing to do or to be.

LIKELY= Probable.

YOU'LL MAKE WORLD'S GREATEST DAD= You'll be the greatest dad in the world.

ENTERTAIN= If you entertain someone, you make them have fun, they don't get bored.

I'D NEVER BE HOME= We can use WOULD to talk about a habit that was common in the past but not now (the same as USED TO).

ROAM= To wander, to go from one place to another place for no reason, just for the fun of going around.

TRAINERS (BrE)= Sneakers (AmE) (see picture)

GRAZE UP= Scrape, scratch. If you graze up your knees (etc), you fall down and hurt yourself in a way that your skin breaks (see picture)

CLUBHOUSE= A building or room occupied by a club or used for recreational activities. In this case he is talking about a wooden house in a tree top. (see picture)

IT GIVES ME A CHILL= A find it a bit scary, it's frightening.

SWINGS= (see picture)

STILL= Quiet, not moving.

SKIPPING= A game where children jump using "a skipping rope" (see picture)

HOPSCOTCH= A game in which a child tosses a stone into an area drawn on the ground and then hops through it and back to regain the stone (see picture)

NO CHURCH AND NO STEEPLE= A reference to a finger play in which children use their hands to build a church steeple (see picture of a steeple) and people. Click here to see a video in which a kid shows that finger play for you.

DUMB= Silly, stupid.

SHUT DOWN= Close it; switch it off.

DISPLAY= The screen where you can see the text or images on your phone.

TAKE IN= Experience, pay attention to.

YOUR SURROUNDINGS= The place, things and people around you.

MAKE THE MOST OF TODAY= Try to have a day as good and interesting as possible.

IT CAN TAKE= It may need.

OVERTOOK= Took control of everything.

LOVE HER TO BITS= Love her very very much.

HUNDREDS= Hundreds of people.

THE REAL THING= The really important person, that person who is authentic and valuable.

KEEPS YOU UP= Wakes you up or doesn't let you fall asleep.

WIPE AWAY= Dry with a piece of cloth.

FLEES THE NEST= Leaves home to have their own life, their own house and family. To FLEE is to escape, to run away, and NEST is the home birds build on a tree.

HOLD= Have in your arms, carry.

WASTE= If you waste time, you use it to do something wrong and not useful.

UPON= (old fashioned or literary) On.


WHISPERS= Speaks in a low voice.

CHANCES= Possibilities, opportunities.

A SET NUMBER OF DAYS= Just a limited number of days to live.

GETTING CAUGHT= Being trapped, imprisoned.

THE NET= The Internet.

REGRET= The sad feeling of having done the wrong thing or not having done the right thing.

GUILTY= Culpable, responsible for doing something wrong.

TYPE= Write using a keyboard (like when you write text on your computer or phone).

MAKING EYE CONTACT= If you make eye contact you look other people in the eyes.

GIVE INTO= If you give into something, you just do it because you can't resist the pressure, for example just because everybody else is doing it.

FOLLOW THE HYPE= Do what everybody else is doing. The HYPE is the fashion.

'LIKE'= A "like" is a reference to Facebook. When you see a message, image or video you like, you "give it a like", that is, you press the LIKE button and give it a vote to show that you like it.


© Angel Castaño 2008 Salamanca / Poole - free videos to learn real English online || InfoPrivacyTerms of useContactAbout
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