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Posts tagged “pop culture

Distressed: Replicas, “vintage” items, & New Old Stock

Posted on April 13, 2011

The following is an essay I wrote in graduate school on April 13, 2005 — exactly 6 years ago today. It is about the harmful dominance of faux-vintage and “retro” items in pop culture. I wrote it for a class called Construction of Taste, and it got an A. I was fairly proud of my A considering the class concerned the philosophy of aesthetics, and philosophy of any kind tends to baffle and irritate me very quickly. I spent much of this course being annoyed and using words like “bullshit” and “masturbatory.” Maybe you’ll use those same words here. I don’t think so, but it’s for you to judge. I recently found this essay while straightening out my room. This is the kind of…

I give the humans from “WALL-E” two hard winters before they resort to cannibalism

Posted on July 7, 2008

I’m sorry, everyone, but the human beings at the end of Disney Pixar’s “WALL-E” are totally fucked. There’s just no getting around it. No happy ending. You probably shouldn’t read on if you haven’t seen the film, because this pretty much spoils the whole movie, but let’s face it — you’re going to read on anyway. I’ll recap the film and its ending briefly, using big words in the beginning so kids won’t know what I’m talking about, and they’ll get bored and leave: In the not-too-distant future, Earth has become so clotted with the detritus of unfettered capitalism that the biosphere has become unsustainable for all flora and fauna. So there’s goddam garbage all over the place. So all the humans bugger off…

You can’t spell “news analysis” without “anal swine”: An interview with Stephen Colbert

Posted on May 19, 2006

In August 2005, before he seized the Bush Administration’s collective panties and gave them a breathtaking twist at the White House Correspondents Dinner on April 29, I interviewed Comedy Central’s professional pseudopundit Stephen Colbert. The article concerned the debut of The Colbert Report, a spin-off of The Daily Show that was at the time only a trailer and known semi-officially as The Colbert Réport, with a puckish accent-marked flavor the trailer refers to as “French—bitch.” We talked for about 10 minutes or so, much of which was spent by me giggling incomprehensibly while he chucked zingers in my direction. Afterward, I turned in a roughly hewn article to Student Advantage Magazine, slashed even further to fit onto one half-page in the October 2005 issue. I had borrowed someone else’s tape recorder, so…