“Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain!”

From: The Wizard of Oz

Genre: Movies

Who said it?: The Wizard

The story behind the quote: The quote comes the classic film TheWizard of Oz. I don’t really think I need to summarize the movie… but I will anyway.

The Wizard of Oz tells the story of Dorothy (and her dog Toto) who, because of a freak accident involving a tornado (!), is magically transported to the Land of Oz. Now, she is stuck in the Land of Oz. Glinda, The Good Witch of the North, advises Dorothy to see the Wizard of Oz as he may know of a way to send her home. Along the way, Dorothy meets a colorful cast of characters, including The Scarecrow, The Tin Man and The Cowardly Lion.

The quote comes from the scene when the crew talk to the Wizard, who looks like a giant floating head. However, Toto exposes that the floating head is just an illusion created by a middle-aged man hiding behind the curtain, who is the “real” Wizard. He attempts to distract them by asking them to ignore the man.

Geek wisdom: It’s sometimes good to leave a little mystery in life. Magic tricks are a lot of the fun is because we are awed by the act. We may not know how it’s done but we appreciate it all the same. As a species, we try to know everything. But, sometimes, knowing everything reduces the wonder we see in the world.

There is a simple joy to seeing something happening and not know how it happened. Sometimes, trying to understand it takes the fun out of it.