unfortunate events of early December

I’m high on zinc and short on sleep + dignity. For a moment, laid up on the couch trying to get the snot to flow back into my nose while pouring hot ginger tea down my throat, Love Actually seemed like a good idea. Having seen the film in London in 2003 (me: “It’s like we’re at the premier!” my friend Avery: “no it’s not”) I’ve watched it a few times since (which I’ll blame on my sister) and what I can only explain as a strange combination of my double X chromosomes and sheer masochism keep me coming back for more. Stray thoughts:

!  Never does my inherent American femaleness make itself more apparent than when faced with Hugh Grant (whatever crags he may be assuming as of late),  for whom my inexplicable love runs as deep and dark as my natural hair color.

& If for nothing else, this movie is notable for its 2003-era barely veiled jabs at “American imperialism,” (despite Prime Minister Hugh’s weird “sympathetic” (?) 9/11 reference in the opening monologue).  The American president is sleazy, not good at playing with others, and Texan! Which may be preferable to the producers’ apparent assumption that all Americans are hot sluts? Thanks? Shannon Elizabeth (HAHAH my fingers just typed those words) and Denise Richards (annnnnd again)?

& Quite a bit has been made on certain corners of the internet about the all-but-blatant female subservient nature of two of the vignettes: Hugh falls in love with his secretary (who’s “fat,” OH GOD YES GIVE ME MORE)  and Colin Firth with his Portuguese house keeper. AND despite everything else I’ve ever said, I’m ok with both of these things, because I love both Hugh and Colin and both their chosen ladies are JUST so dark-haired and adorable that I find myself wishing I was a Portuguese housekeeper so I could fall in love with a handsome English turtle-neck-sweater-wearer (oh sorry, in British, ROLL-NECK JHAHAH) who like “writes” or something at a French (?) villa because his wife was fucking his brother. However, the real problem I have with this whole scenario, which is the real problem that I’ve had with being alive every moment since that moment in Boulder Colorado a lot of Augusts ago is this: Portuguese homegirl is sweet and adorable and natural-nosed, and she seems like she’d have, oh I don’t know, A PERSONALITY. And. Wait for it. Colin loses his manuscript to the French wind or whatever, because obviously writers in the 21st century practice their craft OUTSIDE ON A TYPEWRITER. So all the leaves of his work of genius (which we later learn is a crime novel, LOLLLL) blow away, and this beezie strips off her clothing to dive into the pond after the would-be movie starring Will Smith. And at the moment she’s in her virginal white bra and undies and her “surprisingly ” tight little brown body is on display (with full on-lower back tatt WHOLE NOTHER ENTRY) that little soft-sparse “falling-in-love-score” starts playing straight into the psyche of YOU THE VIEWER who is subliminally soaking up “oh they had this little cute thing before but now that he sees she has a beautiful body he’s in love with her and we’re in love with him being in love with her. I’M NEVER EATING AGAIN.” Hey kids, but obviously specifically women, NO ONE WILL LOVE YOU IF YOU DON’T LOOK GOOD NAKED. LOVE, HOLLYWOOD. (they won).

& THEN ITS EVEN WORSE because I’m like, UUGHGHHGHGHG I’m going to be one of those horrible people (in another universe, in which people actually want to date people and don’t have “baggage” or other bullshit I don’t care about because DUH) who passive-aggressively forces (like so p-a-ively that I make him suggest it or I’m dumping him on Christmas eve) her poor s.o. to watch Love Actually but then tries DESPERATELY not to like OOGLE the shit out of Karl (IRL some Brazilian cologne model) whilst he’s in his undies (black! undies!!) ??? HAHAHA EWWWW maybe we should stick to the Muppets or like nothing?

Pop Music and Power and Women and America// Quaaludes + Cages + 2001

Let’s drink some Brooklyn Lager and watch some videos.

First:

QUESTION 1:  Did the framers of the Constitution imagine a republic in which adolescent girls were  free to fantasize about abusive boyfriends and getting fucked on Quaaludes? My non-existent retirement fund says that “hopeless place” is more often than not sixth-period geometry.

Also strange: that Irving Welsh’s little known 1996 debut novel that was adapted into a little known film called Trainspotting (that certainly wasn’t misguidedly adopted by young white American hedonists at all as justification of blowing their trust funds on E and std tests)  is referenced by the biggest popstar in the known universe as a desperate bid for “edgy”/”relevant.”

Meditate on that for a moment and gchat me. EMILYSHORTSHORTS

Next:

Watch the segment of Nicki in the cage again (try to forget everything that’s beneath contempt about the song, which includes everything about it, actually, and is a topic for another time). Conventional wisdom: women + cage [divided by] progressive feminist/ sentient human alive in 2012= this table’s getting flipped. However. Nicki is not your Romney-voting great-uncle’s cage dancer.

Minaj takes our collective cultural lexicon revolving around  “woman as object” and rewrites the thesaurus. Intentionally assuming the role of caged female + therefore valuable commodity, she takes that table we almost flipped earlier and somehow turns it:  she’s in charge. She knows how to make you want her, this is how you want her, and now she has your attention and will tell you exactly what she wants to. She has the power. And that rug you were just standing on. In her teeth.

Finally:

Dug this one up from before the internet was invented and we used to listen to the literal radio, the top forty radio, when we were fifteen fifty years ago and quoted Jennifer Lopez in our AIM profiles (my life I live it to the limit and I love it, now I can breathe again, baby now I can breathe again). City High’s “What Would You Do” stuck out as an awkward, dull antidote to songs about crushes, love, and being real (all amounting to uh, LET’S GET WEIRD AFTER SIXTH PERIOD GEOMETRY, but only if you bring me ice cream, obs), a to0-hooky explanation of something that we like to call (or ignore as) “American Life [comma] A VERY ACTUAL PORTION OF.”  But, since we were fifteen, we were like, AM I FAT>?!>!>!

HOWEVER.  Not sure if it’s the decade+ that’s elapsed and the fact that I’m always sad about the bulldozer of the human experience that is hypercapitalism and the commodification of said experience due to said bulldozer, or the fact that I happen to be PMSing my head off (yes we’re over it & nice/hot/literate dude please bring me some fucking ice cream and a back massage and a bedtime story thank you) but I SOBBED (not like the normal ONE tear that happens during a movie preview about endangered whales saving a blind kid or  some shit, but the kind that actually infringes your ability to verbally communicate without collapsing into that Claire Danes circa 1994 crumple-face) at the imagery/thought of A CHILD CRYING BECAUSE HE’S HUNGRY AND HIS MOTHER IS STRIPPING TO PROVIDE FOR HIM BECAUSE HIS DAD IS [& i quote] SMOKING ROCK. Also HAHJAHAHA@ those dudes blaming the mother for stripping/prostituting (and the only way to feed him/ Is to sleep with a man/ For a little bit of money and his daddy’s gone/ Somewhere smokin’ rock now) rather than THE DAD WHO’S SMOKING ROCK WHILE HIS CHILD IS GOING HUNGRY AND THE MOTHER IS FUCKING STRANGERS FOR US DOLLARS. Where’s that song, City High? UGH get me that table again because now I need something to flip.

JESSICA CHRIST* I wish I knew in 2001 what I knew now because I would have just lit everything on fire.  Too bad I was straightening my hair and trying to garner the attention of White American Date Rapists (and failing, because I had braces and standards, thank you goddess). #prepschool

EXTRA CREDIT: Compare and contrast City High’s stripping single mother to Nicki Minaj’s intentionally caged cheetah/self. How has the image of the American female as sex object evolved in the context of Bush’s America to Obama’s? In Romney’s conception as 47% of the American public as self-styled victim, where does Nicki fall? Is Nicki’s win a success or loss? Where is City High now? Should we all dye our hair pink? Or just get wigs?

Peace, Love and Decoding Media. ❤ <3<3

*HAHAHA why do we not say that? HILARIOUS