Culture Future Shock

Today I had to bring my car into the local Dunwich auto shop for some routine maintenance.  I dutifully signed my name to the work invoice without pricing and shuffled over to the waiting area with its free coffee station, now coffee-less because of COVID and the free popcorn which is likewise sans popcorn.

They’ve got a hi-def 80-inch tv that plays millennium talk shows endlessly so I knew to bring a book to read and sit in one of the chairs facing away from the screen.  But unfortunately, it was a technical book that required pretty serious concentration to follow the thread of the argument and what I found was the tv was horribly distracting.  I could hear these three voices jabbering and crooning at each other in a patois that I assume was hip-hop speak.  I tried my best to tune it out but the tv was blaring at 80 decibels and these three bozos were shouting at the top of their lungs as if what they were saying was some life and death matter.

Finally, I gave up trying to read and I figured I’d just vegetate and that way the tv wouldn’t be such a nuisance.  But I couldn’t do that either.  Now I couldn’t even distract myself with the hopeless task of reading the book.  Now I couldn’t help hearing their moronic conversation.  And the true stupidity of what they were saying hit home.  They were a popular culture review program.  They were reviewing things like some kind of hip-hop award ceremony and the associated red carpet activity.

The descriptions were hard to understand because it was larded with words that, though English, were being used in senses that you could not find in a dictionary.  Although maybe I’m wrong.  Maybe the urban dictionary was invented for these meanings.  As an example, they were describing the probably pornographic outfit and “dancing” that one female rapper was wearing at the afterparty and they were full of approbation for this sight and they kept saying that she was “always giving.”  And I couldn’t quite imagine what “giving” referred to.  I think it involved not covering up her primary and secondary sex organs but I wasn’t completely sure.

I did understand what twerking was.  That detail was something that Miley Cyrus explained back in 2016 when she was campaigning for Hillary Clinton.  Now it appears to be as routine a part of hip-hop activity as to be the equivalent of saying hello.  Anyway, the awfulness of the discussion never got better.  And I found that I was becoming increasingly aggravated by listening to these cretins.  So, I got up and turned around to see who these people were and who was watching this crap on the screen.

The three “hosts” were somewhat young.  There was a black woman, a Latina and a gay black man dressed in spandex with a bow in his hair.  Then I looked at the audience.  There were four guys between the ages of about forty and sixty.  And they were sitting there with glazed over expressions.  I read my audience and acted.  I went over to the side of the flat screen and hit the power button.  The screen went black and the voices ended.  All four men looked up at me surprised.  But then one guy smiled and said “Thank you.”

I got back to my seat and started to read my book.  But I half expected someone to turn the tv back on and was resigned to waiting outside in the hot noon time sun just to avoid listening to any more of that drivel.  But it never came back on.  And I couldn’t concentrate on my book.  I was thinking about the putrid level our culture has reached.  And it wasn’t even just the perversity of the subject matter.  It was the abysmal level of the discussion.  These people weren’t just vapid.  They were clearly morons.  Communicating with them would be like trying to discuss politics or morality with a cow or a horse.  Absurd.

I sometimes feel that the Dissident Right exaggerates the falling off of intelligence in the new America.  After all, the baby boomers had their weird and moronic cultural moments when they were young.  No one could claim that watching “The Monkees” was an intellectual pursuit.  But this is different.  This is the victory of stupidity.  This is the mainstreaming of dimwit chic.

Well, I did get to see something of the world today.  But it wasn’t good.

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TomD
1 month ago

Being a total non-consumer of broadcast TV, I can’t say that I fully understand. But I can say that I don’t want to understand.

Chemist
Chemist
1 month ago

Good on you for shutting it down. For the next time: Not just headphones – Noise cancelling headphones.

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