This is about a live feed concerning something meaningful and significant.
A few weeks ago, another live video went viral. But this one was different.
This live feed was about something meaningful and significant. It was a live video of a couple of astronauts making a spacewalk outside the International Space Station thousands of kilometres above the earth.
But it wasn’t just a carefree space jaunt, the astronauts were making repairs on the space station. The space station that is the culmination of decades of space research, innovation and international cooperation.
The Facebook live video was different for another reason. For one it wasn’t live live. Although it was promoted as such.
It was actually a recorded video of an actual livestream of real astronauts performing some repair work on the International Space Station.
The body responsible for maintaining the space station actually maintains a live stream using two cameras that are permanently fixed on the sides of the station. You can watch the stream here everyday of the week, 24 hours of the day.
Which raises the question of why the media outlets who promoted the stream as live decided to do so. For them it was probably just a social media experiment or a marketing gimmick to get thousands of viewers to their Facebook pages.
And it worked. Millions of people from across the world streamed to their pages. But beneath all the skullduggery and marketing sleight of hand, there is a much deeper lesson to be learnt.
Gazing through the video feed from space surely puts everything into perspective. Despite all we were taught in schools, there are no man made objects on the surface of the earth that can be seen from space. Not the Great Wall of China. Not even the greater Benin Moat.
All of man’s accomplishments and advances are invisible from only a few thousands of kilometres from the surface of the earth. Every single one of them.
Everything we have done or are doing as a race pales into insignificance once we leave this plain. Even if it’s on a spacecraft we created.
Nothing matters as much as this green earth that we live on. And nothing will be as important or hold as much weight.
Not our titles, doctorate degrees or certificates of participation, Twitter blue ticks, social media influence, plushy Island jobs, flashy company cars, overpriced house rent, your overbearing boss, that your high maintenance girlfriend, your demanding pastor, Lagos traffic jams, your underemployment, that telco’s poor customer service, that receptionist always giving you the bad eye, your father’s health struggles, your blatantly corrupt mechanic, those cheating penguins, eternally crappy Nigerian internet, online and real time feminism, how to combat Chelsea’s 3-4-3, Jose Mourinho‘s face, President Buhari‘s struggles, Boko Haram, the price of tomatoes, why we are so fixated on the dollar rates, iPhone 7 AirPods, exploding Samsung appliances, recalcitrant Uber drivers, Donald J Trump‘s face, why Obama has to leave, this week’s deliverables, why the girl you love is flat.
Every single thing we live or think on the surface of the earth is minuscule in comparison to the grandeur and size of the world that we live.
Every little thing we have worried about, fretted and pined for, doesn’t really matter when we look at the earth from a different viewpoint.
Specks, each and everyone of us.
Maybe, knowing that now, we could learn to treat each other better, treat our home even better. After all, we are all in this together.
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