“Diddy, who was known as Puff Daddy at the time, put this together using various artists on his Bad Boy record label. He raps on it with Mase and Notorious B.I.G., using previously recorded material from B.I.G., who died in 1994.”—Oh, word?
I wouldn’t normally add to the glut of end-of-year things like this, but this time I will, terrible pun and all. The idea is that I’ll write about a song a day till Christmas Eve (pre-recorded and queued via the magic of the internet of course) that I haven’t written about elsewhere. Good.
Vanbot - When My Heart Breaks
I came close to picking this for The Singles Jukebox's forthcoming Amnesty Week (what did I actually choose? 'Wait and see'). The obvious comparison for it is a Robynian one, but that's a bit too simplistic. 'When My Heart Breaks' does fall under the same banner of Icy Swedish Disco Heartbreak Electropop, but Robyn rarely (if ever) works with such a distorted production, or something so punchy. Each drag back as Vanbot jabs out a “THAT'S!” is thrilling, the ones followed by the massive drum clatters all the more so. It's still a mystery as to how, despite popping up sporadically with uniformly high quality material for over two years, she remains unsigned.
In each of these cases the live-tweeter has momentarily become an internet hero, and their dutiful recording of strangers’ conversations is celebrated as hilarious, epic, “better than most movies.” BuzzFeed raved that Elan’s tweeting of his fight with his fellow passenger “wins Thanksgiving.”
Not to be the Grinch, but can we consider for a moment the fact that live-tweeting and broadcasting another person’s private conversations to the internet for our own entertainment is actually pretty creepy?
As some of you know, I had a bit of an altercation today with a woman named Diane on an airplane.
I had a great time antagonizing her, reading your responses, and just generally trying to have fun with an irritating person. But I did have a point and I just want to put it out there.
I know I can…
So, fuck this guy.
I saw this going around on Facebook a few times this morning, and I couldn’t put my finger on why it pissed me off so much. It’s a Storify of some producer on The Bachelor and the increasingly hostile notes he exchanged with a woman who was complaining about their flight being delayed on Thanksgiving.
In his telling of it, the woman does sound rude, certainly. People can be pretty self-centered sometimes, and air travel and holiday stress don’t tend to bring out the best in anyone.
So this guy began live-tweeting about it, which is cool. Live-tweeting about jerks in public, sure! Get that out there. And then he started sending her notes. A glass of wine with, “If you drink this, you won’t be able to use your mouth to talk!” and then, after she sent him a response note accusing him of lacking compassion, another one that declared (hilariously), “the one who lacks compassion is you,” and “I hate you very much, eat my dick.”
As he tells it, at the end of the flight, she slapped him. At which point, he handed her his final note, which explained that he is famous on the Internet, and she should Google him to understand that she was the one who was wrong.
Throughout it all, he got busy on Twitter congratulating himself for his courage in, er, sending sexually threatening notes to a woman traveling by herself in her fifties.
(Of course, lest you think all of this attention has given him a swelled sense of his own importance, his Tumblr post on the matter made it clear that he’s got some perspective:
A lot of people have been really nice to me and called me a hero today. It’s really fun to hear but it’s not true.
Our troops are heroes. Fire fighters and policemen are heroes. Doctors and teachers are heroes.
Glad he cleared that up!)
Anyway. I thought the guy was a dick, but it was the relentless celebrating of his treatment of this lady that really bothered me. Yes, she should have been nicer to people who were also experiencing a frustrating, difficult day. No argument from me there! I worked service jobs for many years, and I know that people can be jerks.
But here’s the thing: You have no idea what another person’s circumstances are. Yeah, maybe they’re just a self-centered jerk who can’t look outside of themselves for five seconds to see that other people are dealing with a situation, too. But also, maybe her circumstances were genuinely unique. Maybe she had a very sick family member that she was supposed to be spending Thanksgiving with, and she was acting rudely because she was upset that she was missing time with her dying whatever. Maybe she herself had been diagnosed with cancer three days earlier and had been informed that she had six months to live, and this would be her last chance to teach her daughter how to make her special recipe for stuffing, and she was reacting to the cruelty of time and fate and human fragility, and the poor gate attendant was just a stand-in.
No one has any idea what battle another person is fighting. Should she be rude to a gate attendant? No, that’s still not super cool. But when you consider that there are reasons why one person might be more upset by a given set of circumstances than another — why a delayed flight for Elan might just be a hassle, while for her it might be life-or-death — it really makes the idea that he was the one invoking “compassion” seem bizarre.
Anyway. You’ve got a guy who is patting himself on the back relentlessly for being hostile and cruel to someone in obvious distress. You’ve got a whole bunch of people on the Internet celebrating his hostility and cruelty. The ugly bits of Internet culture look at some strange dude on an airplane telling a woman in her fifties who’s traveling alone, and who’s in obvious distress, that he hates her and she should eat his dick, and applauds him as a hero, all in the name of “compassion.”
It’s shitty and gross. I don’t know anything about this Elan guy — I’m sure he’s funny and has smart things to say sometimes — but it’s not really about him. I’m going to sound, like, 150 years old when I say this, but it’s really disappointing to see that this is the form of “compassion” that Internet society thinks is worth celebrating.
Coming home these mornings at 6 o’clock or thereabouts I am made a little sad by noticing the increasingly large numbers of people who are up at that hour and who — they ought to be ashamed of themselves — are apparently on their way to work. You can tell they are. Their faces have been freshly…
If you get a flu shot just know they will inject it into your muscle. That is, your body will have an immune response in your muscle. So if you find a few hours later that you can’t lift your arm above your head without experiencing pain, well, there’s your answer.
“I ain’t gonna lie, for the last three years Thanksgiving has been hard. I ain’t really been around my family. The last two years I think I ate White Castle. I didn’t even have a plate. This year I’m trying to eat good. I’m thankful for Chief Keef—for him opening up a door for me to be able to do my thing. Opening up my record label, Savage Squad Records, I’m thankful for that. I’m thankful for God and my family and just to be living. In Chicago a lot of people don’t make it to be 23." - Fredo Santana”—What We’re Thankful For - The Fader
(damn, i think i got something in both of my eyes)
There have been many articles decrying Michelle Obama’s “un-feminist” choices. What these criticisms fail to acknowledge is that for women who are not single and childless/childfree, feminist choices often include a focus on their families and communities. This is particularly true of Black feminists.