I rarely take anything I read in the comments section of our social media pages to heart. So if you’re hoping to comment on something I’ve posted after reading this and you happen to be a bigoted, racist, sexist, asshole troll beast – newsflash – I’ll just delete your comments, ban you from the page, and like never publish your comments on our website. This is to say nothing of not reading anything you send me, I delete 100% of all emails with disrespectful, yet butt hurt subject lines. I do what I’m gonna do because that’s who I am and I’m not asking for your permission to exist, not in real life and not on the Internet.
And I wouldn’t want you to waste what functional brain cells you have typing out a half-coherent thought on my behalf. You’re going to need them later when you’re standing in a checkout line and they ask you whether you want paper or plastic. Unless you just happen to be an environmental version of the above mentioned crazy hater, then save the mental energy you’d so carelessly expend on me for remembering that you have brought your reusable bags with you and will need to hand them over so the food items go in it and life goes on. Also, good on ya for saving the environment by helping to preserve the Earth, whatever your reasons. I like you a smidge more than others of your kind.
That said, I genuinely worry that sometimes I’m not presenting ideas well-enough myself. And unlike a troll, I actually care if what I am putting out in the world is advancing independent thought or holding it back some how.
You see a comment I got on an article I published and promoted made me wonder if what I was trying to present was somehow misrepresented in part because of how I tried to “promote” an opposing view, while also working within the framework of an aspect of culture I actually despise. Honestly, it takes real talent and a hardworking genius to mock bad ideas at the level of a Colbert or a Stewart. Or maybe some of that magic happens because they have a talented cache of writer elves hidden in the background that help them come up with those so on-point segments and satirical diatribes on politics, race, culture, all of it. Plus somebody has to dig up all those appropriately awful stock photos and caption them appropriately.
Anyway, I’m going to talk about this comment, because here in wonderful land of protected speech and the free market of ideas, a lot terrible stuff gets spread around unchecked until it gets checked. Or in the case of trolls, deleted and banned. Then views change (maybe) marginally and we all go back to our lives until the next “big” thing hits. Really, I’m not looking to contribute the spread of ignorance. So this is my way of correcting any part I had in possibly perpetuating something I don’t actually support at all because maybe I didn’t present an idea clear enough. I’ll own that.
And I feel if anyone had read the ideas presented and watched the video in the article I’m referencing, they would see for themselves what our stance is on people who “break the Internet” ignorantly. Alas. I think I failed, sorry Kendra Cowan. If I’d figured out a way to promote this “humorous” article that didn’t play into the culture that feeds on this crap, you might have read what I’d written, linked to, and watch the video the guys at Heck Bender did that lampoons this type of behavior. And if you’re like me, you might have learned about a woman named Saartjie Baartman and how the kinds of images Western media lauds as “newsworthy” have a heartbreaking past. Honestly had no clue, and the whole media thing actually taught me a little history. Not so much about journalism – I had classes on that and actually worked with Mark Potts on our college paper a long time ago.
Have no clue who and what I’m talking about because you’re just along for the ride? It’s alright, I’m an avid screen-capper. See exhibits A and B. below.
OK. After some thought, I’ll admit using that Google logo with Kim Kardashian’s butt Photoshopped into it was also playing up sexism, sensationalism, and all that to promote what I wanted to say about this topic. And there really is no excuse. I used it because it was fast, easy, and convenient to choose that image rather than look for something else that might serve a “photo art” // satire. I’m a bad Feminist. (Also I’m currently reading that book and will likely have a review in about a week or so.)
Maybe the way I should have phrased my lede when promoting the article, which totally might seem like we’re blowing it off as stupid, harmless fun on the surface, was to go the full distance like Colbert, who never seems to break character, and write:
“TIP OF THE HAT: I CAN’T UNSEE THAT AND I KNOW NOW ALL CHILDREN WITH A WORKING WIFI CONNECTION HAVE TOO. GOOD ONE. WITH THE GRACE THAT A THOUSAND WORDS COULD NOT CONVEY, SO MUCH YOU’VE SAID HERE WITH YOUR BUTT ABOUT AN OLD RACIST MEME AS ART IS VALID. YOU SURE SHOWED ME!”
(Yes, all caps because in my head Stephen Colbert is always shouting like a Faux News talking head.)
Or maybe I should have taken the Stewart route, and said: “Oh, you think this is edgy art do you and everyone who doesn’t agree is a hater? Let’s examine this, shall we?”
(If you know how that dude sounds when he poses questions like that and gleefully looking into the camera, then we’re on the same page.)
But I didn’t phrase things like that. I tried to take a cheeky “middle of the road” stance when I promoted the link to said article and video. I know some people probably clicked through, but others might have been turned off given the image I used and the sensationalism of it all. For the record, since hitting publish on this post, I haven’t bothered to look up any news segments the satire champions of TV-land might have aired about Kardshian’s attempt to “break the Internet” backed by Paper Magazine’s self-serving push into the spotlight. (And for what? Nothing else in that magazine’s new issue is making waves. Seems like that says something on its own.)
Anyway, maybe people like Colbert and Stewart will decide to forgo all press coverage. Which would actually be quite impressive, although I remain skeptical that might remain the case. Why? Because I see everyday examples of sex appeal and gender stereotyping being used to promote all manner of things from “manly meat sauce” to orgasmic shampoo and the human equivalent of “doe-lure” body spray/stinky man funk-control to pictures of men mistaking grown-ass women for blow-up dolls and confusing seven-inch sandwiches for their king-sized (?) dicks. So, unfortunately, I do think we’ll still be seeing this brought up for a time yet, because like the guys in Heck Bender said, “A butt is a butt.”
And also because our economy thrives on impulsive, sensationalistic purchases. How else do you explain Taylor Swift’s faux overnight white noise sensation on iTunes? I get that and while I don’t agree with it, I know I’m not immune to it either. My vice is pre-ordering an album on vinyl knowing I rarely play music on vinyl. I rationalize it by telling myself I get an instant download code right then and there, or that there will be a download code that comes with my purchase, plus goodies from the Record label. For instance, I’m not saying it’s good for you, but Polyvinyl sends out Airheads candy with each purchase.
Still do we have to be so damn ridiculous about presenting our brands or ideas? Shouldn’t a product, a work of art, a book, an article, or person be able to sell themselves on the virtue of what it is they actually do or say? BUT I guess if you think your greatest asset is physical beauty and no one has clued you into the fact that plastic surgery or bat shit photo shoots isn’t always the answer to staying relevant either, or at least mockery-free, if not disfigured in some cases (Tara Reid), then maybe you’re not developing your other assets that will help you later when the shallow parts finally bottom out and the money dries up – because let’s be real, it’s always been about what an image can sell no matter what the social cost might be. And sometimes those of us who are aware of this fact don’t always comment about it in the most enlightened way possible.
So what is this mysterious body part that will help you out if you nourish it and treat it well? Like cleavage of the breasts and buttocks, this physical attribute, which also is cleft in the middle, is called your brain. You got two hemispheres and some front and back lobes. If you watch the “Walking Dead,” you might have a clue where the brain stem is located.
To that end, sometimes my brain needs a break. The world is a bit much, and all I really want is my peace and quiet back. And for a mere $39, there’s a place in Edmond offering just that. It’s called Float OKC and it offers what seems like a “spa quality” hour or two’s worth of quiet solitude. Like it’s kind of what I imagine floating in space would feel like, or in an amniotic sack pod, like in the Matrix, but with less red and blue pills.
If you’ve ever been struck by the desire to punch a random someone in the face because the noise level of a crowd got too loud and echo-y for you and/or had your personal boundaries crossed one too many times with elbows and rude people with drinks that spill on you. And then you went to work the next day, and it was more of the same but “daytime” different, this. See below.
This potentially might be your new best friend to repair the damage done to your spirit and your mind after the holidays, or why wait, maybe it helps you get through the holidays. Also they say on the website that it helps with PTSD, which I had not heard before and I can think of several veterans who’ve served in Iraq and Afghanistan who might benefit from some soul nourishing alone time, if the research is there to support it that is. All though these things are not a “one size fits all” answer, so I imagine maybe SOME people who identify as introverts (or even extraverts too) might get a lot out of a session, and for others perhaps less so.
Although for me, the only obstacle I foresee in booking a session any time soon is the thought having no music on at all. It’s supposed to be totally silent, FYI. Honestly, give me an Air or M83 album, or maybe the newest album from an artist (like Kiasmos) on Erased Tapes Records, a blanket of darkness, a cushion of warm, salty floatiness and I could be a very happy gal for the next two hours. Because for at least a short time, I could attempt to mediate on something I value instead of having that time stolen by some wacked-ass, celebrity pimp industry that thrives on ignorance and rubberneckers.
Because meanwhile, back on the Skull farm, nearby “THINGS TO SEE” are being down-ranked every time someone in your local network ruminates on silliness that perpetuates damaging stereotypes and is in fact not forward thinking “art” at all. That is if you care about this sort of issue, and because you rather go see something you can appreciate on a few different levels then mindlessly click through memes and articles that don’t actually advance anything but the ad revenues of those who support the promotion of shallow images.
If that bothers you too, then maybe you should check this event link and go see this show tonight in conjunction with all the neat things happening on the Plaza and at Istvan Gallery. If you’re in Norman, there’s also Second Friday art walk too (see Issuu embed below for a preview or what ya missed if you end up not going).
And that’s it from me. Have a great weekend.