Selective vision is a talent of mine. I think it’s a talent of everyone’s, really, when it’s convenient for them. We see only what we want to see in certain situations, because it’s a lot easier than looking at what is staring us right in the face.
Generally, I use selective vision when I need to simplify a situation. I can’t deal with fifteen different variables floating around, so I just figure out my own terms and face the situation based on what it is (or at least, on what I’ve decided it is).
As it happens, this can lead to idiotic blindness.
I recently had one of those experiences where I came to a startling revelation, and, upon sharing it with some friends, was met with eye rolls and a general sentiment of “You SERIOUSLY hadn’t figured that out yet?” Suddenly I felt like one of those main characters in a really crap romantic comedy where the plot is so glaringly obvious to the audience that it actually insults their intelligence, and all they can do is sit there and wonder how it is that the main characters haven’t figured their shit out yet.
The thing about selective vision, though, is that sometimes it’s a sub-conscious thing. You don’t even realize you’ve narrowed your view until someone taps you on the shoulder and says “hey, have you looked to your left recently?” Lo and behold, it turns out there’s a 3-ring circus to your left that you hadn’t even noticed.
Once you’ve widened your vision though, that’s it. There’s no going back. You can’t un-see the big picture, or the complications that go along with it. And sometimes that’s a good thing, because we all need a proper wake up call now and then.
But other times there’s a reason for the selective vision, and after someone points out that three ring circus, well …
You have to go and take a look at it.