Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Brooklyn and why Boston sucks

I've been thinking about moving to Brooklyn. Way better apartment opportunities, jobs and a subway system that runs beyond 12:30 has sparked my interest. Also, I heard the Beastie Boys are looking for a fourth guy, and ain't nobody has seen as anybody as skilled as me. Pass the mic.

Boston is cool, but most of the city exists for rich people with strollers worth more money than I make in a month, e.g. Beacon Hill and Back Bay, and don't forget the tourists. Nearly all of downtown Boston: Fanueil hall area, Boylston street, Newbury street and the rest of it are variations of tourist traps or shitty places that are designed for people who visit the city once every couple months to either feed their fat worthless family or drink themselves to near death so they can tear the city up and get into fights. The restaurants and bars in Boston are culture-less pig troughs with their total worth illuminated by the ridiculous menu item I once stumbled upon -- truffle oil mac and cheese. Hmm, how can we appeal to fat idiots that dare leave the safety of their mac and cheese filled houses. Dare they try something new? No, they want variations of mac and cheese and buffalo-sauced meat, make sure you add some ridiculously expensive item so you can excuse charging 12 bucks for fucking durum wheat, water and some mild shitty cheese. I never go anywhere near downtown Boston on the weekend, and woe to the traveler that dares use the green line when the significantly rotund tourists are piled on. A lot of Boston has the cultural charm of a dilapidated Mid-western city but on a Manhattan budget. If you associate yourself with Irish culture even in the most superficial and insulting of ways, you have a go free pass to pretend your contributing to the culture and appeal of Boston. Though really, the bullshit Irish-ness is just contributing to Boston's faux-irish, chucky-cheese/disney world quality of artificialness.

Duck tours, fuck you.

Cambridge and Somerville are still cool though. Cool enough to maybe save Boston. If you ever come to Boston to visit, just say fuck you to the freedom trail, green line, Newbury street and duck tours and go to Central, Harvard or Porter squares in Cambridge, or Davis square in Somerville. That's where real people hang out.

San Francisco: Most Racist City In the World!!!

How long ago was it? I can't remember now, but I recall hearing about San Francisco eliminating the use of plastic bags. Hearing that I'm sure embarrassed most other progressively-minded people living in their hot bed of hip liberalism.

"Yeah, I don't want to sound arrogant or anything, but my city is definitely the Mecca for cool, intelligent people. We have bike lanes, raw food restaurants and one giant windmill that's not hooked up to anything. I smoke American Spirits on the bench next to it. Sometimes I swear I can feel the pain of Native Americans when I smoke them... but, uh, anyway..."

"Oh, really? Wow, your city sounds pretty hip. Hey, I didn't introduce myself. *Knocks blond dreadlocks out of face* My name is Om, the Buddhist meditative mantra that starts with the first possible noise in the throat and ends with the last possible noise at the closing of the lips. It's like the most complete noise ever. I'm from San Francisco."

"Cool, San Fran, that's a pretty awesome place to live. I read on yelp that you have some great vegetarian restaurants and a burgeoning World Music Hip Hop scene."

"Vegetarianism is spiritually corrupt, and the entire ideology was orchestrated by Morningstar and Boca burger to sell their overpriced faux meat. I only eat stale donuts out of local donut shop dumpsters. Power to the people!"

"You're a fucking idiot."

Chinese person holding ten plastic bags filled with various vegetables that look like variations of bok choy shuffles by.

"Wait, dude, does this city still use plastic bags!? Wow, I had no idea New York City was such a dystopian wasteland full of culture-less slobs. San Francisco outlawed plastic bags, and I think single handedly saved the Earth and the Oversoul. New York is so uncool. I'm getting on my roadbike, because I don't own a car -- what's a car even, I'm from San Fran, I don't even know what that is -- and I'm riding my bike back home to San Fran. Later, bitch."

Another city dweller devastated by the fact that they're not as crazy cool and socially progressive as San Francisco. But, really, I got to thinking about this while on the MBTA. At the Chinatown stop on the Orange line, a lot of interesting Chinese folk get on with a ridiculous assortment of plastic bags, sometimes plastic bags in plastic bags. To the sensibilities of your average, cool, white and college-educated person, this seems wasteful and impractical. Why not just use sturdy, large reusable bags and save the planet from more garbage for garbage island floating out somewhere in the ocean? That's when it hit me. White people will self-regulate and regulate each other through informal social control. Informal social control is a sociological concept that explains the process by which closer knit communities regulate deviance. If you want to be in the white people gang, you have to do white people shit or we will make fun of you, glare at you, socially ostracize you and use a host of different methods that threaten your social well-being in a community. All groups do this. But informal control doesn't work on Chinese people who don't give a shit about your norms. Nobody in San Francisco who is white was excessively using plastic bags or even using any plastic bags. I'm pretty sure of that. In Boston alone, a progressive city but no where close to San Francisco in superficiality, a white woman without a reusable bag might as well just take a shit in the middle of the train during rush hour. San Francisco made the plastic bag law to force their norms on Chinese people -- formal, governmental control! Fucking racist assholes!!!!

Michael Jackson

His death has been on my mind much more than I thought it would be. That might have something to do with being subjected to 13 hours of listening to his singles on repeat because the bartender I work with came out of the closet as probably one of the most energetic Michael Jackson fans I've ever met. How a man can listen to the same songs for that long and still mimic Michael Jackson's signature cries and croons with the same level of vigor -- I'll never know!

But I think beyond the aural imprinting that may have occurred at work, MJ's death has made me realized that his music and persona were inescapably apart of my life and the lives of all those around me. Even when I had never considered myself a true fan, I'm still sort of a MJ fan because of the sole fact that I grew up in the US. His death feels significant as a historical event where a death of most other celebrities or public figures would just bring about a much more intellectual and isolated response in myself. There was a time before his death and a time after, and everything in some way feels shifted.

Sha'mon! WOOOOO!

Tell Me I'm The Only One

I'm thinking of broadening the scope of this blog to make it more dynamic and to facilitate routine, consistent updates. The idea of this blog originally started with the intention of having a relatively easy creative outlet for writing. Something that would inspire more effort, more clarity and more feedback beyond private writing. It was originally supposed to be themed as an autobiographical look into being a useless sack of shit college graduate in Boston, but the landscape where the blog started became virulently and uncontrollably political because of the urgency of Obama's bid for presidency. Those political musing evolved into a type of "metaphysics" for understanding and further fleshing out my own views on politics and current events. I started to drop some serious philosophy bombs that are probably equal in their profundity and amateurism.

In order to make this blog more approachable, more engaging and less like a post-traumatic flashback of that rambling, angry nerd in your philosophy class you hated, I figured I'd break down the little rigor I maintained on the blog and turn it into something like a "tumble blog" as my dearest friend JP has termed it. Though it will be much more substantive than the average tumble blog, and it will never be allowed to degrade in form to the nightmarish wasteland of twitter. I will never post about how "mad dope" Pizza Hut's -- oh, sorry, The Hut's pasta bowls are, or complain about my life with appropriate emoticon attached. It should loosen things up here and allow me to make more posts of varying degrees of entertainment and insight. In sum, this blog will act as a quasi-journal, readable inner-monologue, guide to the best parts of the Internet, and soapbox for when I fucking flip out about how stupid you're being.