Tuesday, April 12, 2011

I Hate Viral Videos

This obsession with transforming a Youtube video into a worldwide sensation is definitively the glorification of human stupidity. We have transformed the banal and insignificant into cult objects to such a point that it is a rule of proportionality: the stupider and more absurd the video, the more popular it is—to the extent that we have to wonder why some of these have become global hits.

I understand, for example the humor behind the monkey with smelly finger (1 million), even the brief drama (5 seconds) of this prairie dog (7 million) and maybe I could understand some people’s obsession with cats (37 million) or for their adorably ordinary children (17 million). After that it’s easy to realize of the little it takes for us to be cruel, to make fun of the discomfort of the puberty of a child who publically imagined being his favorite movie star (21 million), or laugh at a kid who sings his own song (67 million), without really knowing why we’re laughing. However, the worst part is that suddenly we have hundreds of videos of people who are prepared to humiliate themselves just to stand out for a moment, a few weeks, of the terrible anonymity of a civilization of billions of unremarkable beings. Suddenly there are viral hits that were obviously made with the intention of being stupid, like Rebecca Black’s song (84 million) and the chain reaction that it has produced. And we watch them, again and again, just to say to ourselves, “How stupid; what asininity.” And it’s just terrible that that gives us satisfaction.

The stories of men and women who transcend their ordinary lives to have their 15 minutes of fame have become repetitive and empty. Why does the masterful voice of Susan Boyle (63 million) surprise us? Because it seems inconceivable that an old and pathetic-looking woman gets more than a glimpse, and we end up idolizing her, because it’s inconceivable that an poor ugly woman doesn’t fail. It’s clear that others have taken advantage of this success, as in every reality show some clandestine figure appears that leaves us with our mouths hanging open. We’ve choked ourselves on the big spoon with the idea that these people are real and common and came out of our neighborhoods because, that way, for 30 seconds, our lives seem just a touch less pathetic.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

I hate angry global-warming-inspired debates.

I hate when common sense is so damningly overshadowed by politics that something simple has become a for-or-against, all-out war.

After reading an article in Rolling Stone (“Who’s to Blame”) and listening to a 14-year-old rail against the existence of global warming on a recent This American Life podcast, I’m appalled. Why has this become a political debate? Because that’s what drives the world.

Would you stand behind a running car and happily breathe the exhaust? No? Well, then we should make a big move toward changing those cars so that we’re not all breathing that exhaust on a daily basis. Fossil fuels are limited. Okay, so let’s move the jobs to renewable sources of energy, ones that aren’t going to run out and leave us all like a bunch of junkies grasping around for one last little fix.

And that’s where it all goes wrong—if we have to change manufacturing, society’s dependence, and jobs—well, what better to do that than politics? What better than to make it a two-sided argument of whether it’s real or not, whether remedies are necessary or driven by the political machine, right-wing, left-wing, blame blame blame. Right. So rather than just look as people and say, “Gosh, all of that smog over L.A. and all of that oil in the Gulf—maybe not the best way to do things,” we turn it into a debate of existence and jobs and necessity.

Way to go, world.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

I hate Lady Gaga

The eccentricity of fame is over the limit when the young lady in question walks out wearing a meat dress. It’s the same as putting on a sign that says “look at me! look and don’t stop looking!” except that this sign is made of corpses. Her always-absurd presence, her love of the cameras, and more than anything her fanbase, her success, are all irrefutable proof that something isn’t right, that we are arriving unstoppably at the end of the world. Meanwhile, the lady keeps her poker face.
Cher seems normal when she's holding Lady G's scarf

Friday, February 11, 2011

I hate used bar soap.

I hate bar soap in bathrooms, especially in the bathroom of an acquaintance’s or a friend’s house, at someone’s house during one of those awkward parties where I’m not really sure if I want to be there anyway.

It just sits there, grimy, waiting to slip through my fingers. It is used—it looks like it has been rubbed a few times, maybe that same night but probably some weeks before, when so-and-so’s mom visited, one of the only people to actually enter that bathroom and wash hands after peeing. It has that look: that it will do more harm than good, that I will somehow get dirtier instead of cleaner.

I especially hate picking up the soap, opting to believe it is the best thing to do, and finding a hair—it doesn’t matter where from—wrapping itself around my fingers.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

I hate drivers who cross crosswalks.

Remember those children who, no matter how much practice they had in grade school, just couldn’t catch on to that concept of “coloring inside the lines?”

Those children grow up to become asshole drivers who just can’t manage to stop behind the line.

If the light’s red or a stop sign exists and I, the pitiful pedestrian, want to cross, the driver ought to be able to bring the car to a stand-still behind the lines designated specifically for those on foot to safely make it across the road.

Crosswalks are supposed to exist as “traffic calming” agents. But those who just can’t stay inside the lines aren’t calmed: they throw up their hands, curse, blame it on Toyota, look angrily at the vehicle pulling up behind them and think that that guy is a jerk because he didn’t leave them space to back up, erase, and correct themselves.

Monday, March 22, 2010

I hate Comic Sans

Fonts were created so we can live the illusion that we can show our personalities through our digital writing. Usually, for that and many other reasons, I don't like fonts. But it's ok, I don't need to write a post about it, I don't care much. But comic sans? It's not just the fact that computarized, digital communications are trying to imitate the writing of an 12 year old girl, it's all of the people that use it. We see it everyday, with its stupid thickness and its small disproportion. Who uses it? Stupid people who think that the font helps them express better their lack of thought: