Tag Archives: Self Loathing

On Many Modern-Day Americans

15 Jul

I’ve learned many things about many modern-day Americans in the wake of the Zimmerman verdict:

  • Many modern-day Americans maintain a pre-Civil-Rights-Era view on race relations.  If you’re black, and probably a young black man in particular, you are to be docile.  If a white man approaches you, be respectful, do as he instructs, say “yes sir, no sir.”  Don’t make any sudden movements.  If he follows you around at night, armed, understand he is just looking out everyone’s best interest.  Don’t do anything to make him more afraid than he already is.  You think this is not fair?  Well, you should be more sympathetic to how scary you are.
  • Many modern-day Americans think it’s ok to view young black men as inherently threatening.  Understand that your manner of dress, your physical size and muscularity (if you dare have it), etc., may scare white people.  Take careful note that IT IS NOT YOUR SKIN COLOR they fear.  Whites are color-blind about this, it’s everything else about you except that (that would be racist, which they’re not).
  • Many modern-day Americans think it is unacceptable, however, for blacks to ever see concerned whites as threatening, and if they do not remain docile (see above), they should understand the consequences.  For proud whites, self-defense is a basic human right (like carrying a concealed firearm).  Blacks needs to understand that fighting back is NOT self-defense if accosted by a white, because they are the instigators in the first place with their inherent scariness, their “thuggish” appearance, their known proclivity for criminality, etc.  I mean, what is a white to do?*
  • Many modern-day Americans call black teens with no criminal records “thugs.”  They do this, they say, because of their chosen “look” (probably too “hip-hop”), and because they have trace amounts of marijuana on them and have maybe gotten in trouble at school (or because they have been boastful and macho on Twitter).  This isn’t “normal” teen-boy behavior, like white teen boys exhibit, that they will eventually grow out of.  White boys like guns because they are passionate about their constitutional rights and being good Americans.  White boys like pot because all teens have possessed a trace amount of marijuana at some point.  Black teens like guns and pot as an expression of innate, inner thuggery and a disrespect for law and order (and common decency) encouraged by their culture.  Many modern-day Americans believe this key difference justifies the death of these black teens almost regardless of any other factors or context.  The young thugs aren’t really even human, they are dangerous animals, they are beyond redemption, and it’s better to put them down sooner rather than later.
  • Many modern-day Americans believe that black families do not mourn the loss of their loved ones if they are killed by someone black.  They feel that black people only care about friends and family unexpectedly taken from them when a white person does it.  In that sense, their mourning is really mostly about sticking it to whites, rather then a genuine feeling of momentous loss like whites feel when they lose a loved one*.  This is unfair to whites (see below).
  • Most disturbingly, many modern-day Americans believe, that just like with the N word, that the fact that sometimes black people do kill other black people means it’s ok to kill black people generally.  Not until all black people stop killing other black people should white people have to stop too.  It’s hypocrisy after all, why do they get to do it and it’s no big deal, but we can’t?
  • Many modern-day Americans believe in an absolute right to gun ownership and self-defense.  You can seek out threats and confront them.  You have an absolute right to protect you and yours.  The deadlier the better.  If you’re white that is.  If you’re black, gun ownership makes you a “thug” and a criminal (black + gun is not the constitutional victory that white + gun is).  Defending yourself in any way is reason for you to be put down.  You are to be docile.  White rights are expansive.  Black rights are very narrow.  Find this frustrating?  Well, until you convince every other black person in America to be the way I want them to be (whatever that is; see below), you’ll have to deal.  That seems fair.
  • One would be forgiven then for assuming that many modern-day Americans would be happy if young black men all dressed like Carlton and were “clean” and “articulate” and studious and academic and physically meek and didn’t do suspicious things like be out so late for so-called “snacks” (white teens don’t do this; white teens are widely known to go bed early and not crave junkfood).  However, this same community has been less than enthusiastic about embracing Barack Obama, black academia, and basically any black people who aren’t athletes, musicians, comics, or movie stars.  It turns out, if you don’t adhere to the white-normative expectation, you are a thug and threat to my life/safety (unless you are a professional athlete, in which case, stay a safe distance away and entertain me).  If you more closely align with the white-normative ideal, but are black, you are a wimp, a joke, probably an affirmative-action case, and a threat to my job (unless you are a musician (non-rap; if rap, see above about “thugs”) or a movie star, in which case, just be docile and entertain me).  One would be forgiven for seeing this as a “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” scenario/Catch 22 for black men.
  • Many modern-day Americans don’t see anything wrong with piling extreme amounts of negative scrutiny on everything a black person does, even black juveniles.  They are ok with the situation being that blacks have a constant affirmative obligation to prove potential negative presumptions wrong, even as adolescents.  There should be little room for error, after all, each black is on thin ice given the prior bad acts of blacks generally.  If they slip-up, the death penalty seems appropriate.  It is also ok to do the opposite and always assume the best of non-blacks.  This will be ok until all blacks together do everything to dispel every negative presumption whites have.  This is not racist, this is just statistics, and being sensible (but holding whites accountable for prior bad acts of whites? living in the past! the race card! reverse racism! get. over. it. people.).
  • Many modern-day Americans are fucking hateful idiots.

* When a black approaches you at night, you can be sure what’s up.  When a white approaches, however, take a bifurcated approach depending on your race: (1) if you are white, do whatever you want (duh); (2) if you are black, stay put, put your hands up to show you are unarmed, don’t sass or talk back or be disrespectful (certainly don’t use your “ebonics”; few things inflame white men more than this butchery of their precious English language), and work with the white until the white feels non-threatened enough to let you go.

* When a black mother loses her son, gunned down in his prime, she is likely to inquire about the race of the murderer.  If the murderer is black, she is likely to not care about the loss of her son.  If the murderer is white, you can bet she will suddenly “make a big deal about it.”

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SkyMall’s Greatest WTFs

30 Nov

In other news, eating Domino's makes you hot.

SkyMall is my favourite part of most plane rides.  It’s like reading 1,000 tiny infomercials, which doesn’t sound fun, but is if you find rubbernecking on the sheer stupidity of post-industrial life fun, as I seem to.  SkyMall is free to take with you out into the real world, so intones an attendant at the end of each flight, just in case you’re tired of sorting through different Hammacher Schlemmer and Sharper Image catalogues in order to find the world’s most exclusive pointless crap to divert your income to.  If you really want to know what banal evil lurks in the heart of the Modern Machine, it’s SkyMall: the most frivolous consumerism imaginable, reduced to sad little sales pitches designed to make peeing statues sound like high art and dog ladders sound indispensable.  SkyMall is what it’s all about people, the resource wars, tax cuts for the wealthy, derivatives speculation, the endless parring down of social services, infrastructure, education, and the arts.  SkyMall is the antithesis of conservation, culture, and taste.  SkyMall is what happens when drugs and sex are either punished or marginalized, and adult humans develop a desire to get their rocks off by purchasing Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville-brand tequila shot chiller ($250) 30,000 feet in the air.  SkyMall is waste porn.  To wit (click on any picture to enlarge):

Hey world's dentists, SkyMall just made you IRRELEVANT.

Stop worrying about your fucked up teeth and just pop these bad boys over your grisly nubs!  No one will be able to tell the difference between real, healthy teeth and these expensive versions of Halloween vampire teeth, which everyone knows are very comfortable and stay in place, like, no problem man.

Also squeezes tear ducts shut.

“Look 15 years younger by holding a prosthetic face over your own! No one will be able to tell!  Murder Talk to pretty girls again!”  Well, not quite, but almost.  At first I thought this ad was for some miracle pills or creams or something.  Turns out, it’s for an “invisible” harness to physically wear around your face.  No one will be able to tell your face is being physically stretched back by a harness around your head.  Swear to god.  And if they do, just play it off all cool: “oh this? what? did you hear about Mary’s oxycontin addiction?”  Feel your best every morning as you tape your skin back in a desperate attempt to be someone else.

Make believe this doesn't cost the same as a new iPhone.

Jesus Christ Jane, with a name that boring you could at least have interesting status updates on Facebook.  And what kind of idiot wants to watch Netflix on this $200 digital picture frame?  Especially when…

With free internet included!**

… there’s this must-be-some-catch MacBook Air rip-off for $250 on the next page!  **Free internet limited to 30 hours per month, which should be just enough to check your AOL and myspace page.

Patented "Italian" design.

Dude, Rodan’s “The Thinker” pose is totally not making that look any less stupid.  And rocking that apparatus on your head after a hard day of male modeling definitely sounds way more fun and relaxing than drugs.

Finally, you can listen to records in your car! What's that you say? No one wants to listen to records in their car? Uh, shhh...

Now I just need to wait for them to make records even slightly portable.  That technology is advancing fast these days, so, shouldn’t take too long.

"After I wake up from this luscious nap I'm totally going to bang one of those air waitresses"

Teal body pillow? Check.  Purple Hawaiian shirt? Check.  Unlike nearly every other product in this catalog, this product appears to be for those who DON’T GIVE A FUCK what they look like.

What TV? Where?

Do anything? Wear anywhere?  As badass as it looks to chill with some brooding rockstars in footie pajamas, this advert does and IS in need of some major copyediting.  “Cute” and “playful” aren’t opposing concepts at all.  Would it be proper to say “this product looks undeniably embarrassing, yet boasts a tacky style”?  Also, I’m really not sure if “playful pajama attitude” suits literally everyone, especially that girl scowling in the corner.  You can’t look that self-serious while modeling Ed Hardy-inspired footie pajamas for adults.  You just can’t.  I do commend the makers of “Jumpin Jammerz” for coaxing Chris Gaines out of retirement though.

New goal in life: see one person actually using this, stare.

Their unique solution to the misplaced cell phone: CHAIN IT TO YOUR FUCKING WRIST WHEREVER YOU GO.  What about when you wash your hands?  Or go to the bathroom?  Or when you have to do ANYTHING with your hands for that matter?  If this doesn’t scream “I don’t have my shit together in the slightest,” I don’t know what does…

You think it might be fun to get drunk and hook up with this girl. IT WON'T BE.

… okay, maybe this.  “Sure to get noticed” is a vague notion and a slippery slope SkyMall.  Lot of things are “sure to get [you] noticed,” like wetting yourself or yelling on the bus.  It’s not clear that’s always a good thing.

Racisty!

I don’t know about you, but I’d feel kind of extremely weird eating off the back of my fake Japanese man servant.  The perfect coffee table to sit around and discuss Pearl Harbor with your militia friends.

This does not in any way look like a comfortable way to sleep.

Daaamn, her posture is so bad.

A fair number of products in SkyMall seem to be designed solely to make breasts jut out.  Suspicious…

This is MY meat.

To take the time to heat up your personalized branding iron in order to sear your initials into your dinner so you can.. see your initials on your dinner before you eat it.  I don’t know whether this is more dumb or sad, which is why I prefer psychological dominance of my food.  No branding necessary, my frozen pizza knows who calls the shots around here.  JSB, that’s who.

This is actually kind of cool, provided you never actually use the words “lip ticklers.”

It’s worth mentioning that half the products in SkyMall are variations of spy technology, hidden cameras, data monitoring, etc.  The other half are mostly to hide your real self from the world or to make your house look like a Thomas Kinkade gallery.  Paranoia, self-loathing, and useless consumption makes your lifestyle healthy!