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Who's feeling old?

I spend roughly one week of any given year contemplating my relationship to time, calendars, and age. For me, it began on Saturday. I woke up a little earlier than normal that morning, and zoned in front of the television, taking in what felt to me like pretty sparse programming. VH1's "Top 40 Videos of 2005" seemed like as good a choice as any.

You might think that I'm about to wax nostalgic about how I used to recognize most of the videos and/or artists on such a show, but in fact, I'm not. I still recognize most of them, and while I don't consider myself particularly attuned to the pop scene, I do still keep an ear open now and again. Instead, I want to talk about the show itself. In most cases, we got maybe 10 seconds of video, and then 2 minutes of random J-list celebrities (including a disproportionate number of unemployed comedians) literally explaining the videos to the audience.

Here's my question, which betrays my age, I fear: on what planet are there people who want to watch random pseudo-celebrities explain music videos to us rather than just watching more of the videos themselves? It's not like videos are a genre given to excessive narrative intricacy in the first place--I certainly don't need someone to explain them to me. It's as though Exposition has been elevated to the level of programming.

Maybe I'm just being curmudgeonly. I'm allowed, given that tomorrow I begin a year-long transition from my mid-30s to my late-30s.

That is all.


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» Birthday 2005 from the chutry experiment
Today's my birthday, and like Collin, I've been thinking a lot about time, calendars, and age often this week. For some reason, I've been agonizing about this birthday more than usual. Like last year, I think it's worth noting that... [Read More]


It's consumer programming, not really exposition--like watching QVC (which is a special form of advertising as soft core pornography). The story is really besides the point. Did you ever see the guys who sell ornate ceremonial knives? Or the excitment over three kinds of stuffed chicken breasts, delivered frozen to your door? It's the special intimacy of your private consumerloves talked about on TV, with you, like looking at baby pictures except of crabcakes or hair care products that cleans your hair so it feels like it feels when it's dirty. We experience together a relatively unimportant experience we experienced seperately, and is now essential. It's not the story that matters, it's the enthusiasm.

Happy (real) birthday today!

Happy birthday, amigo!