Monday, May 23, 2011

In which I'm lectured on not "getting it".

So my attempt at getting a laugh yesterday didn't work so well. I guess I need to re-think my sense of humour a bit as I found it to be quite good.. so did my friends.. I dunno.. maybe we are just too jaded and cynical, or it was too local. But for whatever reason it landed with the squelching sound of a 3 day old fish.

Lets talk about something slightly more serious then.

The concept of "Getting it". I don't mean Sex, though that could be worked in I'm sure. I'm talking about something that everyone else likes but leaves you cold. A movie, a book, a musical act, a painting, a food. Whatever it is, there will assuredly be someone who dosen't like it for some reason. I tend to be that someone.

I've no appreciation for presentation on a plate so long as the food is good.
I've no appreciation for abstract or geometric art, unless the painting is of something. Lines on a white Canvas #9 is not art, it's an unfinished project.

Those are pretty easy to avoid. My financial situation dosen't allow for eating at a bunch of fancy restaurants, and there is no way I'd drive into Atlanta to look at an art installation or a dead horse in jars or whatever other Hot exhibit they have going. Arthouse movies are easy to avoid too, they don't tend to make it into theaters or my Netflix queue.

The big problems tend to pop up with Music and Literature.

I Like Classical alright, so long as its the right kind of classical. Jazz I have no use for. So that pretty much is strike one against me as far as the "educated" sort think of it. But despite my unabashed love of acts like Little Richard, Chuck Berry, Fats Domino, Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf.. I'm apparently a racist because I don't much care for Lil' Wayne or Jay-Z... This is something I don't really get. I like Rock&Roll from its delta seeking roots to its metal branches, I think I know a fair bit about it. But simply being well informed isn't good enough if its the wrong sort of thing to be well informed about.

Literature is the big one though. Never have I seen so many examples of the Emperor's news clothes in action as I have with books. All it takes is some pretentious reviewer for the New York Times or The London Review of books to rave about something and suddenly if you don't like it then YOU are the one with the problem. Being content to live and let live is not an option. You have to like it or you are stupid. It's never the authors fault for making an impenetrable and un-accessible book. It's always your fault for not showing it the proper appreciation. It's certainly never that they are simply convincing themselves it's great because some one they respect tells them it is great. Never. Thats preposterous. It goes against all the indoctrination they had when they were in school.

But, like Ol' David Lo-Pan says.. 'You weren't put here to "Get It".'

I'll try and having something more genre relevant for you all soon.


Trey said...

Yeah, I just stay away from those pretentious book reviewers so they don't trouble my serenity in regard to the stuff I like.

Lagomorph Rex said...

Well I try never to let it bother me, But occasionally it does. This usually happens when I'm trying to talk to girls.

Again as I live in a college town, most of the girls I talk to my age tend to be college girls. So they tend to be neck deep in that sort of attitude.

M. D. Jackson said...

Lagomorph, you have my sympathies. I wasted far too much time in my youth at a university putting up with what I used to call "cappucino intellectuals", those students who spouted all the "party line" thinking and had little critical faculties of their own.

For institutes of higher learning there is actually very little really intelligent people residing at universities.

Lagomorph Rex said...

Cappuccino Intellectuals, I'll have to remember that.