Monday, May 14, 2012

Ew ew EW!!!! More that is everything WRONG!

NBC chairman Bob Greenblatt said, “It was a difficult decision. Everyone here respects Harry’s Law a lot but we were finding it hard to grow the audience for it. Its audience skewed very old. It’s hard to monetize that.”

Now I never watched this show, but I only watch a handful of shows and none of them are crap like The Bachelor that is apparently easily MONETIZED (barf up a stream) either, so that's beside the point. The point is, HI, I'M BOB EVIL.

Yes, I understand companies need to make a profit. But goddamit, it didn't used to be ALL about that. There used to be some damned CULTURE AND HUMANITY. It really is all about the bottom line now, isn't it? How depressing.

I'm going to stop reading things now and listen to some country music.

This pretty much sums up what I was trying to pinpoint in one of my previous entries, about why things seem so different from the 80s now in really awful ways. In handy chart form, even.

"In 1983, 90% of American media was owned by 50 companies. In 2011, that same 90% is owned by 6 companies."

Does that make anyone else feel like they got kicked in the gut by like, some sneaky financial ninja? When did this HAPPEN to us? Why did we LET it? Did we even have a choice? And do most people even care?

Well, I care. This doesn't just apply to media either. It goes right along with what I was saying about stores too, like Macy's, the big fish eating all the other fish. This much conglomeration is not good. And here is the proof, not that proof was needed. This kind of change is evident all around us if we pay attention, but it's scary to see it laid out in such stark terms. My childhood really was better in a lot of ways; it isn't just nostalgia. Our culture really is going to hell right under our noses.

I don't want my child to grow up in a world with only 6 things. :(

Monday, May 07, 2012

Another bit of nostalgia: the Chuck E Cheese in Northridge that's still there! Particularly, the weird robot band thing. In retrospect kinda creepy but as a kid, it might as well have been Disneyland. I was MESMERIZED when those things popped out. I remember Kissin' Cousins being performed by something purple and furry.
If I saw it for the first time today, as an adult, I probably wouldn't think twice about it. But as a kid, it left an impression I remember to this day.

Edit: I was wrong! It wasn't the purple furry thing who sang it. I think it was... whatever this is. A hippo with an orange afro? I remember feeling all sad and bereft inside because the main stage show had ended, and as a kid it feels like TEN YEARS between shows. So imagine my delight when I wandered into another area and this popped out and started singing Elvis at me! (And yes, it was delight and not sheer terror.)

Sunday, May 06, 2012

God I love the internet! It's really the one thing I can think of that is sooooo much better than when I was a kid. Though if there had been internet, would some of my other good memories not have existed? Hmm. I think I'll avoid that little brain bender and share TWO TOTALLY DIFFERENT REASONS why the internet is awesome!

1. Chef Boyardee roller coasters. These were a big part of my childhood cuisine, so I googled them. Of course they are long gone, but... ... there are tons of other people with the SAME MEMORIES of this DELICIOUS CURLY PASTA PRODUCT! (Well, it was delicious when I was six. It might taste like dog food now, but I don't care! I want some!) Even simple Roller Coasters have a nostalgia page. This is how I know I'm not alone, and everything is somehow okay.

And on a totally different note... MY THOUGHTS EXACTLY

Scientist, artist, police officer, homemaker... what makes you a girl (and a feminist), is just BEING WHO YOU ARE. If you're happy, you win. Thank you for wording this so perfectly and beautifully. This made my day. Yes, even more than the Roller Coasters.

PS ~ I think "Grand Rapids Ohio Applebutter Fest" is the happiest phrase I have ever seen. Thank you, youtube randomness!
I woke up this morning feeling refreshed. We may have to live in this corporate world, but we don't have to live in it. We don't have to buy it. Until the day there are no other options left, we can still say NO. And carry on.

Saturday, May 05, 2012

I am cursed with hating the time I live in, and trying my hardest to find joy where I can. I think this is part of why I enjoy abandoned places so much. Echoes of the past I think was better. Heck, it was better.

So, I am spending my evening watching vintage footage of the place I grew up in which is now homogenized like every place else. (And most of the non-homogenized parts are trash.) There used to be like, 10+ different department stores around. Now there're two, Macy's and the Other Macy's That Took Over that Other Store. Oh, three if you count the Sears Nobody Shops At except... old people, I guess? Everything these days is like the giant fish that eats all the other little fish. It sickens me. Who wants to live in a world with just one fish? Not me!!

I'm also watching old commercials. Remember when commercials had a jingle with the product's name in it, so you could actually remember what they wanted you to buy? None of this artsy fartsy crap where you don't know if they're trying to sell you a car, a watch, a cologne, or some electronic thingy that will be obsolete so fast it probably wasn't even worth writing a jingle for. No, it was O-S-C-A-R and double your pleasure with doublemint gum and chow, chow, chow! Simple and to the point. No, "what the hell was that? was that in German?" Not only does it suck, it's bad advertising! No wonder the economy is in such bad shape! BRING BACK COMMERCIAL JINGLES! And while you're at it, bring back TV theme shows too. "Come and knock on our door, we've been waiting for you..."

I live in hope that someday, something will be good again. That everything that is grand, and wonderful, and interesting hasn't been digested by the big fish. Enough people must realize that life isn't good homogenized. Life doesn't exist on twitter, it exists in the souls of the things we create. Like classic buildings. Please, stop tearing everything down to build another same-old-same-old. I feel quite desperate about this.

You know what i think did it? I was watching a video of LA in the 60s, and realized the LA of the 80s I grew up in had more resemblance to that than the LA of today. You might say, the 80s we're a long time ago now. But I see it as things are changing more and more rapidly than ever, and not for the better, and why? For what? To keep satisfying the big fish? Progress is not eradicating the unique, the iconic, the mom and pop stores, the five and dimes, the corner hobby shop with the paint smell I remember to this day. Who exactly thought this world would be better? Are people happier? No, they are not. I think people are much less happy. They just text all day so they don't notice what's missing.

So this is for you, Westchester Antique Faire, Carl's Hobby Shop, the Broadway with the cool display windows, and all other casualties of progress and giant hungry fish. You may be gone, but I hope someday to again live in a world that's worthy of you.

I don't want to live in the past, far from it. I want a present and future with some surprises left in store. You turn a corner and see something you've never seen before, because it's local and run by someone with a first name, like George or Carl. I want color and whimsy and unpredictability. I want fancy box displays with ridiculous mannequins and Christmas decorations. Not, "Gee, I wonder if the Macy's at the mall 5 miles away has anything different than this one, or the last one." It's kinda like those old cartoons like the Flintstones where they'd run and the same scenery would loop by 100 times, except it really is the same scenery repeated 100 times.