The timing could not have been better.
Over the course of the past couple of weeks, I've been participating in an ongoing discussion on a variety of bad pop-culture detritus -- everything from bad actors (Gary Coleman, Gary Shandling, Bobcat Goldthwait). . . bad movies (the recently viewed "Vacancy," another Luke Wilson flop, this time in the "horror-movie-shot-at-desolate-hotel-with-creepy-desk-clerk" genre). . . to bad music (fuck, you name it). . . bad "scenes" (often observed at "psychobilly" shows, the whole fat-chicks-with-bettie-page-hairdos-tattoos-glasses-clothing-decorated-with-skulls-and/or-cherries thing. WHEN the fuck will that die?). . . and then of course there's bloggers (hi, how are ya?) and the whole "blog scene" which I didn't even realize was so god-awful until I ran across a particularly unsettling news story, which I'll touch on in a minute.
First, though, I want to introduce you to my new favorite website, DON'T do it this way dot com. . . . and this delightful post: "DON'T take just any Craigslist modeling gig!" I'd include the YouTube video here, but you really have to see it in the context of the "DON'T" post, with their accompanying comments ("I wonder if they told them, 'this might sting a little.'") This website perfectly captures the "so no it's yes" philosophy, which reminded me of. . .
. . .a buddy of mine, copywriter and all-around good guy, who maintains a couple different websites of the "so no it's yes" variety: The Lame Train ("Daily raillery detailing life examples of noted lameness."); BrandSpankin ("Giving brands the spankin' they deserve!"); and The Daily Duh ("an idiot's eye view."). This fella's ad parodies are, dare I say, genius.
Now, about this disturbing news story I mentioned earlier. . . My suggestion for the next candidate on "DON'T do it this way" is Emily Gould, New York City blogger extraordinaire who openly admits to possessing a compulsion to blog about every detail of her personal life -- down to decribing the tattoos of her boyfriends and directly quoting intimate (and supposedly private) discussions she's had with them. That in itself would be no big deal were she not a former Gawker employee who, through some stroke of what-the-fuck, scored a cover story in the New York Times Magazine in which she detailed all the details of her addiction to blogging. That's right, I said cover story. Now, I know that everybody in the Manhattan media community, as well as everybody who saw the article when it was first published, AND everybody else who heard about it second-hand and then hunted down the article on the web, has already said this, but: How the fuck did this story happen in the first place, and more importantly, HOW DID SHE MANAGE TO MUCK IT UP SO UNBELIEVABLY BADLY? I mean, come on sister. I guess she was really trying to drive the point home when she wrote a piece three times longer than it should have been (for which she was paid thousands of dollars), about her irresistable need to share too much information in her writing. I'm not here to criticize her, however (hard to tell, I know). In fact, there were points in her story where I thought, "I know exactly what she means; I've felt the same way." I think that as a person, she's probably all right. And furthermore, it probably would have been impossible for her to write that story in a way that would be even a little flattering. And she IS a good writer. She just writes too much. My issue is, I just can't wrap my brain around ANY of this -- Emily's blogs, her life in general, the content of the Times article -- being newsworthy. The most interesting thing about it is that it's gotten as far as it has, in spite of the fact that it's not interesting at all. A passive-agressive lovers' spat conducted via blog? The whole debacle is an armchair psychologist's dream. Which is why I can't stop reading about it.
Next on my agenda: go to Rotten Tomatoes dot com, sort movies in ascending order according to ratings, and start from the top (or bottom, rather) -- from the totally unwatchable to absolutely horrible to the "dang, this sucks." I figure I've got plenty of material to keep me busy for years to come, since it seems to be a hell of a lot easier to find lousy movies than it is to get my hands on something decent to watch.
Say, if anybody wants to win automatic rights to wear the "I'm a douche" t-shirt, go ahead and point out that this entire post is "so no it's yes," or better yet, "so no it's no." That's ironic, right?