Saturday, October 21, 2017

Disappointing David Brooks, Parts 507–511


Wow, time flies when you are gainfully employed and not looking for things to do because you've seen all the porn. I haven't even considered David Brooks and his disappointments with various people and/or groups of people and/or the nation as a whole in at least a month. But just because I didn't look, doesn't mean Brooks's disappointment wasn't in full effect.

How have we been disappointing David Brooks of late?

He's certainly disappointed that none of the Republicans in charge (you know, the adults) have managed to stop Trumpism. He has a problem with the Trumpist idea that "Americans are being oppressed by a snobbish elite" and he writes that without even the slightest hint of irony or self-awareness.

Unless David Brooks is even more subtle than me... well played Mr. B.

"Won't somebody please explain to these stupid Trump supporters that things were better before" Brooks seems to implore. And you'll note that he did say "please."

He's disappointed, but only mildly so, that he has to explain the gun culture to us (in the wake of the mass shooting in Las Vegas). Deep down he likes explaining things to us. Hopefully the females in David Brooks's life understand that he's not mansplaining to them, he's just David Brooks.

Guns represent America, good and bad, and we can deal with guns after we end the culture war. Interestingly enough he doesn't actually take a stand on gun rights or the prevalence of guns and gun violence during the column, but by implying that there is progress to be made, it's clear that David Brooks wants to take your guns. Try to act surprised.

He's disappointed with Taylor Swift, but not with her appearance. She is talented and beautiful, while Chance the Rapper (as opposed to Chance the Flooring Installer) is merely talented. And humble. And genuine.

David Brooks not only knows who Chance the Rapper is, he also knows who the Sex Pistols is. Are.

He also knows the Sex Pistols.

I want to dress up as this semi-non-sequitur for Halloween: "It’s been a long time since the Sex Pistols burst on the scene."

The scene.

Okay, it's very possible David Brooks doesn't actually know the Sex Pistols as much as he knows that there's a thing called a Sex Pistols and that once upon a time they burst on to one scene or another. It might have been the squash scene. Or the Southampton cocktail party scene. Or was it the TriBeCa scene? Oh TriBeCa... remember lofts? Those were crazy. Just one big room. You can't even do cocaine discreetly in a loft.

What was his point? Oh, having done the math (56/2 = 28, 28 + 7 = 35, 35 > 27), David Brooks is disappointed that the beautiful, but talented, but beautiful Taylor Swift is behaving not like a sincere Chance the Rapper, with whom David Brooks would totally be friends, if only Chance the Rapper summered in Ogunquit or one of the nearby towns or villages or hamlets. They would very likely strike up a casual conversation at some quaint coffee shop while their cars were getting serviced at the BMW place in Stratham. David Brooks and Chance the Rapper would have a lot in common, I'm certain. They're both carbon-based life forms, and both biped males; that's two things right there.

And they both drive 2015 BMW X5s, probably. Brooks's is probably pearl white with tan leather interior and a Sade CD in the center arm rest storage. Chance's would have tinted windows and "blacked out" wheels. David Brooks would call them nifty but secretly David Brooks wouldn't particularly like them.

Does Taylor Swift even know how to drive?! She's not sincere, she's a brand. And like 21 years away from being a socially acceptable partner for David Brooks.

David Brooks is also disappointed that there aren't more John McCains in the world. John McCain is laudable because he sounds like he wants things to change while ensuring the political orthodoxy remains un-upended.

David Brooks is always disappointed when the political orthodoxy is upended.

Sure McCain can be craven and petty and spiteful and just plain wrong, but at least he knows not to fuck with the status quo. Not in any meaningful way.

David Brooks wants more pretend mavericks.

And finally David Brooks is disappointed that you don't recognize how mother-fucking awesome America is. Everything IS awesome, and you should just succumb to that. Embrace the comfort of the status quo! The status quo is certainly comfortable in his Lincoln Park neighborhood—he extrapolates from that.

The awesome USA has the largest GDP per capita!!!

If you ignore the 7 countries with larger per capita GDPs, the USA has the largest GDP per capita!!! Is Luxembourg even a country? Whatev.

Brooks points out that there are "can do" people (the upswingers) and "can don't" people (the downswingers), and urges the upswingers to respect the concerns of the downswingers. Why can't the upswingers just get along with the downswingers, and to a lesser extent vice versa?

Shorter David Brooks:
  • Please start getting along, or at least pretend like you're getting along
  • Stop trying to upend the political orthodoxy
  • Why isn't Taylor Swift 35 to 38 years old!!!



Thursday, October 19, 2017

Song of the Day: "Black Rainbows"

You ever hear a song you like to much that you stop the work you're getting paid to do so you can post it as a song of the day that won't appear for like 2 more days?

Me neither.



Song: "Black Rainbows"
Artist: Cut Copy

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Song of the Day: "Cross My Heart"

I'm instantly charmed by Melody's Echo Chamber and hopefully you will be too.



Song: "Cross My Heart"
Artist: Melody's Echo Chamber

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Song of the Day: "1-800-273-8255"

Fuck this is a great idea for a song. I don't begrudge people who decide to end their own lives--I think it's selfish to call them selfish. Without knowing their pain, you can't know whether the decision was valid.

But all that is predicated  on it being the decision of an adult, someone with real context for what their life is, what it will be. Young people need to talk to someone first, and this number, the National Suicide Prevention Hotline, is a good place to start.

Certainly better than calling me at 2 in the morning. I probably won't answer.



Song: "1-800-273-8255"
Artist: Logic/Alessia Cara/Khalid