tv-buddha

TV Buddha 1976

First designed in 1974, Paik’s TV Buddha brings together the past and present, the old and new, the real and illusory. This version, created for his 1976 Kaldor Public Art Project, uses an old Korean Maitreya (Buddha of the future) that belonged to John Kaldor and a futuristic-looking television Paik bought in Sydney’s Kings Cross. The Buddha perpetually gazes at the TV screen, on which he sees an image of himself recorded by the closed-circuit camera.

7

The LEGO Batman Movie (2017)

Directed by Chris McKay

Purple rain (MC)(MCxSaeyoung)

WARNING: self-harm, angst, MC centric

Characters, MC, Saeyoung, Saeran, RFA members, OC

Word count: 3249

Pairing: MCxSaeyoung

Summary: When Saeyoung saw Saeran hurting himself, he was lost for words and the one who saved them both was MC who has secrets of her own.


—————–


“What are you doing?!” Saeyoung asked. He was knocking on Saeran’s room for five minutes now and his brother hasn’t opened up the door yet so he unlocked the door only to find Saeran with his arms bleeding and filled with claw marks.

When he heards Saeyoung’s voice he looked up immediately and said, “Get – get out!! I don’t need you here!” and proceeded to stand up to shove his brother out of his room but Saeyoung wouldn’t budge and instead forced himself in and held his brothers shoulders and shook them as he yelled, “What are those?!! What are you doing to yourself!!” which Saeran angrily replied with, “This is how I always get by! Now just GET OFF OF ME!!” and this time, he managed to shove his brother who lost his balance and stumbled a bit.

MC was at the living room when he heard Saeyoung shouting at Saeran and banging at his door so she went to him and was preparing to deal with an angry Saeyoung, however, she was shocked that instead of angry, she was looking at a very pained-looking tear-filled eyes of Choi Saeyoung. She held his hands before he begin banging on the door again which startled him but he didn’t mind the distraction – in fact, he welcomed it as he turned to MC immediately and sobbed openly as she guided him to their room.

When she sat down in their bed, she tapped the empty place beside her and within seconds, Saeyoung was beside her and hugging her as he continued to cry. When his sobs turned to small sniffles, she ask him, “Now, can you tell me what was that about?” it took a minute before Saeyoung calmed down before he opened up to MC and told her what he saw and when he finished he looked like he’s grasping for straws as he said, “damn… this is all my fault MC. If only I stayed – if only – ” he was cut when he felt MC tightened her embrace and shushed him as she said, “shhh… calm down…. There is nothing we can do about the past now… but for the future… we can help. Don’t cry Saeyoung… it hurts me too if you cry like that” and tried her best to calm her husband down.

After a few minutes, MC heard the soft snore of her husband so she started to untangle herself from him and guided until he was comfortably lying on the bed – after all, her husband stayed up for two days for some job order he was tasked to do, God knows Saeyoung needs some sleep. After tucking her husband in and making sure that he’s comfortable, MC stepped out of the room and went towards Saeran’s room.

MC knocked twice before the door slammed open. Saeran was about to yell when he decided to give his brother a piece of his mind so when he opened the door and saw MC instead, he dropped his stare immediately so she wouldn’t see past him – cos somehow, MC could always tell his emotions apart. He knew it’s another lost cause when he heard her ask, “Saeran-ah, can I come in?” and he just sighed as he stepped sideways indicating that, yes, she most certainly can.

MC stepped inside his room and went towards the window where she proceeded to turn the blinds up to let the sunshine in. It was a sunny day after all and everyone knows the Choi twins needed to be reminded about the sunlight. MC stood there for a while until she heard someone plopped down the bed, when she turned around, Saeran was the first to ask, “Alright. Say it. Whatever you’re going to say… say it and leave” and all MC could do was sigh as she shook her head and went towards Saeran as she cupped his face and guided it up to look at her and said, “Saeyoung was really worried about you”

Saeran looked away and stopped her hand when she sat beside him and caressed his arms. “What are you do—” Saeran started but he was surprised when MC said, “I know about those Saeran – your scars, I mean…” and this time, Saeran stood up immediately and went to the door and said, “is that all? Now leave” and MC sighed again as she answered, “Saeran – please try to understand your brother. He’s just really worried about you” before heading towards the door and stepping out of his room, she turned to him and said, “I had those too… years ago… I haven’t even told your brother yet but – sometimes I still have the urge to… you know what, tell me when you’re ready and I’ll tell you everything”

Weeks passed and Saeran still locks himself in his room which makes Saeyoung sad but MC kept on comforting him and assuring him that no, he won’t kill himself, and that she’d talk to him if she has to. When Saeyoung asked her one night why she’s the better-talker out them two, she confessed to him what her life was before the RFA and when she ended her story, all Saeyoung could do was kiss her and hug her and show her how much she’s loved.

She showed him her scars – or what’s left of it and Saeyoung kissed all of them while apologizing and asking why couldn’t they have met earlier and MC was laughing through it all because she has the best husband in the entire galaxy. “Maybe God gave you to me as an apology…” she whispered as she looked at the face of her husband sleeping soundly beside her.

It was after three-months after the incident and a clear Saturday morning when Saeran saw MC sitting on the couch watching TV while eating Honey Buddha Chips and Dr. Pepper and he spoke before he could stop himself as he said, “My brother has a very bad influence about your diet” and MC just turned to him and smiled as she said, “Says someone who keeps a stash of honey in his bedroom” which made Saeran stare at her open-mouthed as he asked, “how did you – what the – ” before he realized what happened and all but yelled, “DID MY IDIOT BROTHER BUGGED MY ROOM?!!” and MC was laughing as she said, “Yup. But don’t tell him I said that or he’d kill me…” which was quickly answered with, “I doubt that” which made MC laugh more and soon after, Saeran joined her as he too started laughing.

When MC heard him laugh, she thought that this is the first time she actually heard him laugh like this and she thinks that it’s one of the most precious things in the world. When Saeran stopped laughing, he noticed that MC is looking at him and as if pulling him out of his thoughts he heard her say, “Saeran, why don’t you accompany me for a while?” when he nodded, he saw her smile and stood up from the couch and knocked on Saeyoung’s home office which opened after the third knock and Saeyoung saw MC and Saeran and asked, “Hey MC! Saeran! What’s up?!” in his normal cheerful voice and MC smiled to him as she answered, “Saeran and I are stepping out for a bit… we’ll buy dinner so don’t cook” before tiptoeing and kissing him on the lips as she cupped her face and looked at him sternly and repeated, “I mean it Choi Saeyoung… DON’T COOK” which made the other pout as he rebutted, “BUT WHYYYY??? Do you not trust my cooking skills?!!” which made MC laugh as she answered, “Love, you don’t have it… you’re a genius hacker and all but… you’re not a cook. Remember when you’ve triggered the smoke alarms last time?” which Saeyoung answered with a sigh and a nod before turning to Saeran as he said, “Take care of her for me, alright?” which Saeran answered with a stiff nod but it was enough to make Saeyoung feel less agitated to let both of them go.

Within minutes they were out of the house and walking downtown and towards a very unfamiliar neighborhood to Saeran. When they made another turn towards a less crowded yet dangerous district, he started worrying and asked MC where are they headed but she only answered with a small uncomfortable sigh. As they went deeper and deeper into the neighborhood he noticed that people are giving them weird looks and when they stopped outside of an apartment an old man came up to MC as he asked, “MC? It’s you right? Why are you back here?! Was he able to follow you and told you to come back here?!” which was answered by MC as she said, “N – no. It’s nice to see you Mr. Lee, can I – can I borrow the keys from our old apartment?” as Saeran thought, ‘trying to act tough’. He looked at Mr. Lee from head to toe which definitely unnerved the old man as he whispered to MC, “Is this guy one of his goons? Do I need to call the cops?” which was answered by MC as she shook her head and said, “I married, Mr. Lee. This is my husband’s brother. We came here to get some of my things. Can you open the door for us” which made the old man fluster and reached for his keys as he guided them towards MC’s old apartment.

When the old man left them alone, MC went inside and ushered for him to come in and when he did he saw the apartment almost torn down. He was analyzing the state of the apartment when MC came out of a room holding a bag full of stuff and when she saw him, she sat in one of the sofa and asked him to sit anywhere. When they were both settled down, he stayed quiet until he heard her speak, “This… this is the apartment I grew up with… I used to live here with my dad” and she looked at him as if trying to gauge his reactions and when he nodded, she continued.

“Before I received your text – before all of that. I lived here – with my dad. My parents… are programmers… and my mom committed suicide when one of her most important client website was hacked” and she laughed as she added, “Ironic right? Considering I’m living with two hackers now and I even married one – but I’m not regretting that. Saeyoung saved me” her smile faded as she looked at him and said, “You know, my dad used to be great before my mom died… after that, she started drinking alcohol and … took some drugs… not long after he became an unrecognizable man” she stood up and Saeran followed her with his gaze and she stood in a corner as she continued, “I used to blame myself for my mother’s death… before she died she told me to hurry home because she’s sad but … I forgot about it and came home with the police and ambulance in front of our apartment. I saw her being taken out of the apartment… I saw my dad cry that day” she sighed and went back to the couch but this time, Saeran stood up and sat beside her as she unknowingly started crying. He held her hands as she continued, “At – at first we were both fine… trying to live by just ourselves… until that day when my dad found out about that text and he started blaming me – of course, I believed him” and she looked at her with eyes full of tears as she said, “I believed him because that’s the easier way” and looked away as she added, “and that’s when I started to unknowingly reach for knives or blades and I grow out my nails so I could use them too… I cut myself every time I remember my mom… unlike you, I … I didn’t want to die. You see, I want to end the pain that’s why I hurt myself… but before I lose consciousness, my dad’s face would pop up and I would… I would remember that I needed to feel this pain… for him. I let him beat me up, use up my savings for alcohol and drugs and every night I come back here to return to him… the shell of a man I used to call dad”

Saeran didn’t know when he reached out for her but he noticed when his shirt was starting to get soaked from her tears. ‘She’s tough’ was all he thought as he held her close to him and after almost 30 minutes, she pulled away and apologized as she said, “Thank you for coming here with me. Actually, I haven’t gone here since that day but I heard news that he left when he found out I got married to your brother… I guess… he’s embarrassed of me now huh?” she asked finally as she looked at Saeran who was already staring at her and he let her go as he stood up from the couch and turned to him as he said, “okay… you win” before heading out the door and turning around as he looked at her again and said, “for the record… you’re not an embarrassment” there was a pregnant pause before he added, “even to me… now get up… we have to head home” and albeit she was a bit surprised at how he took her story, she was happy that Saeran, like his brother, took her seriously.

On the way home, while buying stuff for dinner, Saeran told her that he’s willing to attend rehab if she’d go with him which she immediately said yes to and he made her promise that they would track her father down to have a closure once and for all… if he takes her back then it’s good but if not then that’s it… he told her but she was thankful anyway. Saeyoung actually made her promise the same thing and when she mentioned that to him, he just looked at her funny and said, “we’re twins… of course we think alike…” before adding, “or something…” and they both laughed.

They talked about lots of things after that. Their experiences as a child, growing up, Saeyoung’s childhood, their parents, her parents, and at one point he made her promise to build a program. He knew that she’s good with computers but her parents are actually well known programmers and even he knew when her mother died and her husband suddenly disappearing… he didn’t know they had a child though so, he thought, living with them would have somehow influenced her or something. She agreed but only if he’d drop the idea that she’d sell any program she’s made and that’s it’s only for him and Saeyoung to have fun with which he said he agrees to… for now.

When they came home they were welcomed by a very lonely looking Saeyoung sprawled on the couch. When he saw them he immediately brightened up as he went to hug them both before looking at MC and whispering, “What happened? Were you able to convince him to stop?” and from the corner of her eyes, MC saw Saeran nod before giving him a small smile and picking up the grocery bags and heading to the kitchen as she answered, “well, we’ve decided that we’re both going to attend some classes” which made Saeyoung’s brow furrow in confusion as he stated, “well, that’s a… start… right?” and when MC nodded with a smile, Saeyoung smiled and kissed her as he said, “tell me everything later?” and MC nodded again.

They had a feast that night and Saeran helped MC cook as Saeyoung was once again, thrown out of the kitchen by the two. They told some of the day’s stories to Saeyoung over dinner and when they got to the part about their plan for MC to make a program for them to try to hack in, Saeyoung was over the moon with happiness as he looked at Saeran with pride as he said, “How did you get her to do that?!! She told me no a thousand – no, a million times!!” but Saeran just shrugged and said, “I talked business like Jumin hyung…” which made MC and Saeyoung laugh as Saeyoung got it and said, “So it was a temporary compromise – evil… but brilliant” and they all laughed again.

BONUS:

Saeran and Saeyoung found themselves a week after MC gave them a copy of one of her finished programs, still wondering how to get into the fourth line of protection when Saeran almost pounded on his keyboard as he asked out loud, “how do we get out of this!?!” and Saeyoung just laughed out loud from the frustration of his brother as he said, “maybe we shouldn’t have challenged her huh? Don’t worry bro, we only have ten more – ” and he cut himself as he all but yelled, “MC!!! HOW DID YOU PUT MORSE CODE INTO THIS?!!?!” and it was MC’s turn to laugh from her and Saeyoung’s room.

When Jumin found out that the two Choi’s were still unsuccessful into hacking the program MC made, he made a proposal to her if she can help make the website of C&R International which made Saeyoung walk out of the conversation and it took MC a full fifteen minutes before she was able to calm Saeyoung down and they agreed but only when she whispered to him that yes, she will show him Elizabeth 3rd pictures first before she puts them on the website. And when they returned home and told Saeran they saw pride in his eyes as he said, “called it” which made the three of them laugh.

It took them exactly a month and a half to finish unravelling the program but they only got the hint when she told them hints from time to time like when she repeatedly said that Cassiopeia is her most favorite constellation and the time when he randomly hugged Saeran and told him that Saeyoung loves Honey Buddha Chips more than her and so on. After three more ‘games’ with the twins, Saeyoung proposed that they make a game and that was their project, they asked Jumin to fund their game and Zen, Yoosung and Jaehee helped voice over the characters. Naturally, it became the biggest game of the year and was dubbed as the most unhackable game to date and after knowing that one of the programmer is the daughter of two renowned programmers, it sold lots and they got more and more offers.

At one of the RFA parties, that MC still hosts, she invited a group called recover and turn anew which sent her dad as a representative – of all people, and somehow she’s sure that the Choi twins had something to do with this coincidence. She made amends with her dad that night and made a promise that they’d try to rebuild their relationship. She introduced her dad to everyone and they all welcomed him and thanked him for having a wonderful daughter. Of course Saeyoung being himself, he managed to spit his drink out of shock in her father’s face and grabbed the table covers to use as a tissue as he apologized profusely and the rest was made part of RFA’s history.

- Nam June Paik, TV Buddha

“To me, at least in retrospect, the really interesting question is why dullness proves to be such a powerful impediment to attention. Why we recoil from the dull. Maybe it’s because dullness is intrinsically painful; maybe that’s where phrases like ‘deadly dull’ or 'excrutiatingly dull’ come from. But there might be more to it. Maybe dullness is associated with psychic pain because something that’s dull or opaque fails to provide enough stimulation to distract people from some other, deeper type of pain that is always there, if only in an ambient low-level way, and which most of us spend nearly all our time and energy trying to distract ourselves from feeling directly or with our full attention. Admittedly, the whole thing’s pretty confusing, and hard to talk about abstractly…but surely something must lie behind not just Muzak in dull or tedious places anymore but now also actual TV in waiting rooms, supermarkets’ checkouts, airports’ gates, SUVs’ backseats. Walkmen, iPods, BlackBerries, cell phones that attach to your head. This terror of silence with nothing diverting to do. I can’t think anyone really believes that today’s so-called 'information society’ is just about information. Everyone knows it’s about something else, way down.”

- David Foster Wallace, The Pale King (in the most sophisticated Author’s Foreword ever written)