Orange Power!

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Memo to Jersey Shore's producers and gelato pilgrims: YOU ARE DUMB.

I feel bad that I don't mock pop culture as much anymore, but, like a Republican faced with the unemployed, I'm afraid I'm going to have to blame the victim. Pop culture is fucking boring these days. I mean, Wyclef Jean running for president... of Haiti! Wacky on first glance, but then you realize that Wyclef Jean is actually a more heartfelt, honest, and legitimate politician than 90% of the people holding office today. Whoops.

Of course, there's always the Jersey Shore strike.

I've tried to give Jersey Shore a wide berth, under the assumption that it's just going to be a fad we're all embarrassed by in retrospect. Not the show itself, but the whole not-nearly-ironic-enough cultural embrace we've thrown around spray tans and fist pumping. It's like a Halloween party that never ends. Someday we'll all wonder why we asked Snooki what she thought about anything. Of course, we'll probably be interviewing the star of "Inuit Spring Break" about it and everyone will be wearing mukluks. And hopefully not spray-tanning.

But a few weeks ago, even I had to take notice when the cast of the Jersey Shore... went on strike. Demanding more money. And then a few weeks minus a couple of days ago, when their strike SUCCEEDED. You want to talk about a death knell for organized labor in America, this is it. Unions are being busted left and right, but the most replaceable motherfuckers on the planet, who are neither organized nor perform labor, somehow have leverage? Seriously, you could swap The Situation out for any other spray-painted Abercrombie and Fitch model with a haircut from Grease and even his own mother wouldn't notice.

I can only assume their picket line was incredibly successful, because each cast member was carrying one sign and at least three communicable diseases. Two, four, six, eight, watch our sores all suppurate! Sure, they'd have to be taught that chant phonetically since it includes a three-syllable word and counts up to eight by twos, but let's face it. You cross a Jersey Shore picket line, and "scab" isn't just a colloquialism.

In other news, I have been looking for an excuse, ANY excuse, to dump buckets of hate all over "Eat, Pray Love" for weeks now. If you've ever wondered if I have film Kryptonite, if someone could encode something onto the current digital equivalent of Panavision film that would attach itself to every single hate receptor in my body, you have your answer. It's "Eat, Pray, Love". Fuck Julia Roberts, fuck journeys of self-discovery, fuck healing your spirit with food, fuck finding peace in your overprivileged soul in an ashram, and fuck whatever the fuck is fucking involved in the third third of the movie.

And more importantly, fuck the hordes of grown adults, angry because they're too old for Twilight and jittery because it's been too long since their last Nora Ephron fix, who've fixated on this thing. Cue maddening news story from the Telegraph!

"The Gelateria di San Crispino has been inundated with woman clutching copies of "Eat, Pray, Love" by an American author, Elizabeth Gilbert, which is based on the true story of a year she spent travelling in Italy, Indonesia and India trying to recover from a bruising divorce, a rebound romance and a bout of depression."

Even if you discount the Telegraph's slightly sexist melodramatic phrasing, that's got to be rough on the Italians. I mean, sure, foreign tourism dollars in the middle of a global recession, but it's still got to make them feel like bigger whores than the pope. Also! The only thing sadder than a journey of self-discovery is following along someone else's journey of self-discovery. All you're going to discover is their discarded gelato bowl.

The Telegraph even quotes one Australian woman who's decided to follow along with the book despite only having read the first part of it. That's an awful idea. What if it turns out to be a murder mystery? I'm not saying it does, I'm just saying that Zoe Moran doesn't actually know that it doesn't, and bought plane tickets anyway.

This just further proves my theory that in the information age, everyone's a nerd. These people are Eatpraylovies, no matter how much they want you to think they're really Eatpraylovers. There's going to be a reality show convention next year, presumably because the recession has led to a drop in boat sales, resulting in fewer boat shows for washed-up Survivor stars to appear at.

Everyone's a nerd now. And these people are essentially stalking a self-help memoir.