Sunday, April 29, 2007

where do new york subway rats go when they die?

just think about that.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

the definition of getting old(er)

if you're female, perhaps you remember being younger and, even if there were toilet seat covers, never sitting down to pee in public restrooms -- it was a waste of time and you could just as easily stand. but if you're older, perhaps you've decided it's worth it to take the time to gently cover the seat -- with a cover, or toilet paper, even -- and sit your ass down to enjoy the 1 minute when you have no obligations other than to empty your bladder. that's the definition of getting older.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

The Psychedelic Furs

Friday, April 20, 2007

dumpy vs. nice parks

washington square park, unlike bryant park and probably central park too, is a dumpy park. unlike bryant park, at washington square, the frickin grass isn't cordoned off, and unlike at bryant park, at washington square, people sell weed, and there are drum circles, hippy smells, and old men tanning in their underwear.

i gotta say i prefer dumpy. maybe that's because i don't stand out when i hike up my pants so they're bunched up at the upper thigh in a very unattractive way, to allow the legs a little vitamin D. but it's also just because dumpy goes better when you're soaking in the rays and being lazy on the weekend. lazy weekend = dumpy. is that so hard to understand?

seems like it is for a lot of people who -- it now appears -- are moving forward with plans to redesign washington square park. apparently the "need" for a redesign was brought to light by a stick-up-his-ass architect who noticed that the fountain didn't sit perfectly in the middle of the arch, so they're basically tearing up the entire park because of that. excuse me, sir, sir? isn't architecture about ergonomics and suiting human behavior and habits? well guess what -- humans aren't symmetrical. a lot of them like to be casual and easy going, and not give a crap about anything that's going on around them when they're sitting in the park soaking up the rays. so for those of us who value lazy weekends, imperfections and a little dirt, leave us one dumpy park. just one.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

chavs 'n hipsters

among the many fascinating phenomena YouTube has brought us is this one: a comparison between the two groups that brits and americans love to hate -- respectively, the chav and the hipster.

the chav can be thought of as the british equivalent of urban white trash. given how wonderfully politically correct we americans are, and that in our urban areas the chav equivalent is often not white, it's unlikely that such a mockery would ever be made. americans therefore "take the piss" out of a species that likes "taking the piss" out of everyone else -- the hipster, or the holier-than-thou-cultural-know-it-all. i have no idea if a hipster equivalent exists in britain, but given that the british have so few qualms about mocking the laughable chavie species, it seems that for brits, looking down on others isn't something to be looked down upon. so bottom line is that even though they're different, on a general level of mass revlusion, i sense that chavs and hipsters occupy an equivalent sector in the group brain of teens, 20 and 30 somethings in the UK and the States.

now, what does YouTube have to do with all this? it's the satires of said groups, my friends, the satires of said groups that brits and americans place up on YouTube that're of concern.

here we have a satire of the american hipster group. clearly, it is horrible. the concept itself isn't that bad -- that even after a nuclear war, hipsters care only about being tragically cool -- but when you're mocking a group that everyone already mocks all day long in normal conversation, you better be extra creative about it, and write some good lines and do some good acting.

which brings me to this chav satire, of a "scientist" "observing the chavs" in their natural habitat. now, of course i realize that being relatively foreign to me, i'm more entertained by the novelty of the chav than i am by the familiar mockery of the hipster, but the writing and acting and editing are far superior, and so is the concept -- a much richer satire comes out of this fake documentary than the little hipster drama conceived by my american brethren.

and there's something else going on apart from the basic suckiness of this american satire. given the much higher number of chav satires on YouTube compared with the number of hipster satires, it appears that brits are far more comfortable with public mockery of their favorite hated group than we are. this makes sense from the american side, with our absence of a monarch, obsessions with democracy and individual equivalence, etc etc – we hate people that hate or look down on others, while brits are comfortable with being haters – or hipsters. it’s actually a lot harder hating on hipsters because by hating on them you’re kind of becoming a hipster yourself in trying to elevate yourself above them. which brings me to the point that i had no idea was going to come out of this diatribe: brits are hipsters and americans are chavs. go figger.