First things first: As most of you have figured out by now, our connectivity problems continue. It is out of our hands, in large part, but J.C. is sitting in the NN.C control room, which is encased in lead and concrete and located deep beneath the earth in an undisclosed location, working on it. To the extent that he can. Long story short, we hope it will improve soon. If not, we’ll find a new hosting company.
In the meantime, don’t try to resubmit comments! J.C., yesterday: We’re doing a cache thing to help our poor hobbled server and the downside of that is that you may not see your comment show up immediately.
Thanks for hanging in there with us. This site is nothing without you guys.
Because I don’t have much to offer, many days, do I? But here’s this: A movie recommendation, now that it’s out on streaming/DVD — “The Bling Ring,” which we watched over the weekend. (Alan’s a big Sofia Coppola fan.) A light fictionalization of a real story, about how a gang of Los Angeles teens robbed a series of Hollywood stars’ homes, aided and abetted by the internet and the stars’ own carelessness (for the most part, they entered through unlocked doors and windows). They took clothes, jewelry and cash, but mainly seemed interested in stealing as much stardust as possible.
“Is this Herve Leger? I LOVE it!” one says, pawing through Paris Hilton’s closet. “This. Is a Birkin,” says another, helping herself. In a world where luxury brands are shoved in the faces of these vapid teenagers — or all of us — it’s almost a case of can-you-blame-them? Paris Hilton kept the key to her front door under the mat, and had to be informed of the thefts; she had so much stuff, she didn’t notice anything missing. And so this aimless and empty little band drifted from one house to the next — getting tips on their owners’ absences from TMZ and other gossip sites — collecting luxury items and cash and crap. An emptier existence could hardly be imagined, but uncommon? No way. Didn’t we spend some time yesterday batting around those Emmy runway photos? “Who are you wearing?” is a common question. We all know who Herve Leger is.
It’s not a great movie. It’s sort of depressing, especially when you consider how many stories I’ve read about what a clotheshorse Sofia Coppola is, how much she swims in this world she holds in such contempt. But I liked it anyway.
We have some good bloggage today.
Newspapers have stripped away so much of their content in recent years I almost forget how much I enjoy reading a smart critic from time to time. Especially Hank Stuever, writing about a forgettable sitcom that wants to be a nostalgia trip:
You could set your atomic clock by the predictable rhythms of retromania: When I was a boy in the ’70s, we briefly wanted nothing more than to be Fonzie in the ’50s (inasmuch as “Happy Days” struggled to depict the ’50s; in reruns it just looks like the ’70s). Out came the Dippity-Do and switchblade combs.
If only our forebears had possessed the wisdom to outlaw public displays of nostalgia! When I got to college in the mid-’80s, every other dorm room had a Jim Morrison or John Lennon poster on the wall, yet our preoccupation with the ’60s while living in the ’80s is something you never see in today’s films and TV shows that are set in the ’80s. The anachronisms — then and now — require too much nuance and an understanding that the passage of time and accumulation of popular culture is a fluid experience: It’s less like a free-flowing river and more like a dammed-up lake.
Meanwhile, someone explain to me how this bizarre story about a horse biting a man’s penis works: It’s written in English, but the quotes are in (presumably) Tagalog.
Criticizing AIG bonuses is just like being a Nazi. The AIG executives say so. Talk about confirmation bias.
Hump day. Thank ya lord.