Monday, October 6, 2014

Week of 10/06/2014

“Walk of Shame” and Other Quick Thoughts
Following my “Selected Thoughts” and the “Two-For-One Ignorance” articles, I thought it was time to go over a few other quick thoughts on certain subjects that have been on my mind and just haven’t had the time go really go over them until now.
And, of course, the reason behind that is simple… because I have nothing else on my mind that I really could do a normal rant on this week.  Shame on you, world!  You’re supposed to be giving me subject matter to rant and rave about!
Well, anyway… Let’s get brutally honest here…
“The Walk of Shame” – You know, when it comes to phrases such as the “Walk of Shame”, I really think people should fully comprehend what that is supposed to cover.  I recently saw an episode of “Royal Pains” where the lead character was coming back from an evening with his girlfriend and his brother joking referred to it as him “doing the Walk of Shame”.
And I was thinking… where’s the “shame”?
Listen, if you’re in a happy relationship with someone and you’re all consenting adults and it was a mutually-pleasurable evening with no regrets, then you really have nothing to be ashamed about!  There’s no shame in being in that kind of relationship and engaging in that kind of activity as long as you’re both consenting adults!
Now I could understand if you’re getting completely wasted at night and having no idea who you spent the evening with or what you did all that time.  If you feel you might have done something you might regret later on, then I can see where you might partake in that “Walk of Shame”.
But if you’re coming home from spending the night with someone you really care about and the two of you did something that you both liked doing, then there is no shame.  Period.
So let’s put an end to this whole “Walk of Shame” BS… at least when it involves things that have no shame to begin with.
Role Model BS – In a related note, there’s a certain song that has been on the airwaves from a certain pop superstar that I’ve really had a chance to listen to over and over and over again, and I have to seriously question the idea that this same pop superstar could be considered a “role model” for young women when she comes up with songs like this.
“This Is How We Do” by Katy Perry sounds cute and perky and simple enough for people to remember, but if you listen to the lyrics, she’s talking about some pretty reckless people.  The kind that actually validate the “Walk of Shame” phrase.  Going to bed with a 10 and waking up with a 2?  That qualifies.  Giving “Ruh-Spect” (her words, not mine) for people that use their rent money to buy champagne?  I’m guessing you haven’t recently had to panic over trying to pay the bills.  Not having to worry about how you’re going to pay the rent is either a deadbeat tale or one that is reserved for those “adult entertainment” websites.
I mean, seriously, who is her singing audience?
This is the same woman that recently did a song about giving someone sex that would be so special that he would think it was his birthday.  And another song that included some no-name rap artist ranting about how much of a psycho she was and how he could somehow “tame” her.
And I wouldn’t mind any of this at all… except that I then hear people talk about how she is a “role model” for young women.
A role model?  Excuse me?  Have you actually heard her songs?
Again, I have no qualms about her music or what she talks about.  I have a serious problem with the PR spin that says that a pop superstar has to also double as role models for young children.  If you want to run with that self-appointed PR title, then that means you have to pay more attention to what you churn out to them.  If you can’t do that, or you don’t want to do that anymore, then, fine.  Don’t make the claim. And get rid of your PR people if they continue to claim that you are a role model.
By the way, do you know who I have more respect for?  Meghan Trainor, for doing a video that actually goes against body-shaming and does so in a way that is perky and memorable.  But I will say that she says something that I will talk about in a bit concerning “those magazines”.
“I wouldn’t wish that…” – You know when you hear something horrific happening to someone and you say “I wouldn’t wish that on my worst enemy”?  Yes you would!  Stop lying to yourself about it!
Seriously.  You get caught on the highway behind some idiot demonstrating why they have no business driving a vehicle in the first place and they’re making your commute an absolute misery, and you’re going to wish the worst on that person as long as it happens after you’ve distanced yourself from them.  You spend two hours on hold with customer no-service only to be told you’re screwed and that customer no-service will live up to their no-service title, and you will wish the worst on them.  You hear about Too-Big-To-Fail banking criminals getting way with their criminal activities while sending you some notice about a change in your bank account that gives them more of your money, and you will wish the worst on them!
You will do that.  I don’t care how much you lie to yourself and get on your soapbox and pretend that you won’t.  You will.  It is instinctive.  It is automatic.  It is human nature.  So stop deny it and own up to it.  Accept it.
I’m not saying that you should dish out that horrific happening or ensure that it should happen.  I’m saying that you should stop lying to yourself and to other people that you wouldn’t wish it, even if it is only for a moment and you later feel embarrassed about it.  It is called being human.
It’s Not News… - I have a serious bone to pick with radio stations that claim to be “news radio” stations.  I happen to think that if you’re running a “news radio” station that listeners should be able to tune in at any time of the day or night and actually hear… news!
So if I’m tuning in at 9am and I hear some overpaid commentator talking about the news, and I tune in at 2pm and I hear another overpaid commentator making fun of the news, and I tune in at 5pm and I hear a baseball game, and I tune in on a weekend and I hear lawn and finance tips, then I really do not think that station should be allowed to call themselves a “news radio” station; because they’re not actually giving the listeners what they call themselves as!   They’re not airing the news!  They’re doing everything but that!
What a concept, huh?  Actually hearing news on a “news radio” station!
Soda Scam – You may have heard about how the big soda companies have all come to an “agreement” to cut calories, right?  The media script said that the company execs supposedly “saw the writing on the wall” and saw how sugar causes obesity and they’re supposedly being “responsible corporate citizens” now.
What a load of Congressional-grade BS!
Do you really know how they plan on “cutting calories”?  By shrinking the sizes!  So instead of getting 12-ounce cans of soda, you’re eventually going to get 10 or even 8-ounce cans.  And most likely at the same price that you’re paying for the 12-ounce cans now!  Smaller sizes means fewer calories.
Except that it won’t help you any.  Because smaller sizes only means that you’ll have to drink more soda, which means you’ll have to buy more soda, which actually means you consuming more calories, not less, and it means that the corporations get even more money.  It’s not about being “responsible corporate citizens”.  It’s about making more money for the company.
Seriously, the PR people in this country are despicable piles of Angus cow dung, seconded only by you the unwashed masses for not challenging their script!
I have one more for now…
You’re Never Going To Kill Photoshop – This one goes out to Ms. Trainor, whom I complemented on earlier for her music video challenging the body-shaming script.  I know that you’re trying to make a point about the cover models that young women compare themselves to and how a lot of it is creative editing… but you can forget about trying to end the whole practice.
And this also goes out to the other people who are quick to whine about “airbrushed” pictures and how a lot of the images are “Photoshopped”. 
Listen, you’re never going to kill Photoshop… either as an overpriced image editing software or as a reference to the practice of editing images to make something look more appealing.
As the owner and talent of Get Brutal Productions, I’ve designed comic book covers, business publications, and the covers of video boxes.  I’ve been on both sides of the camera, so I know how important image editing is, and I know that you’re never going to get rid of that.  Ever.
There are people who get paid quite well – I wish I was one of them – that get a bunch of images and they have to make them look as ideal as they can.  And if that means removing blemishes and pimples, or nudging the sides of a model’s abdomen, or even slightly changing their skin tone a bit to make the overall image ideally attractive, then so be it.  That’s why they get paid quite well. 
And they don’t answer to whiny social groups on Facebook or well-meaning pop stars.  They answer to editors and publishers, who cut their checks and give the final say-so about what looks ideal.  And it doesn’t matter if they’re paid to make a model look attractive for a magazine cover, or a bedroom suite inside the magazine, or a cheeseburger for a buy-one-get-one coupon that is inserted in the magazine.  It’s all the same to them.
And that’s the real message that women should comprehend when it comes to the models in the magazines.  It’s not about the women at all.  It is about the product.  The models are just props for the product.  There’s your real objectivation!
No, that “you-know-what” ain’t real, Ms. Trainor.  And that’s the point.  It’s no more real than a pop superstar that talks about wasting money partying being called a “role model” for young women, or pretending that shrinking the serving size of a soft drink is somehow “cutting calories”.  It’s all about selling “a product”. 
And, you know, I would wish that “horrible thing” on the people that try to sell us that script.  I’m not ashamed to admit it.

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