Sunday, October 21, 2018

Internet Wading: A bit of it

I missed sharing links last month, for whatever reason, but the links keep piling up no matter what. So, time to share the things I’ve been paying attention to over the past couple months.

First up, the video above, “Why we say ‘OK’”. Because, really, who doesn’t want to know why we say okay?!

Another topic I like, but seldom (?) share on this blog, is photography. There have been a couple things I saw recently that captured my attention. First, “Jack Delano's Color Photos of Chicago's Rail Yards in the 1940s”. The photos are amazing as art, but even more so as a record of a city/state/country that is long gone.

Photography, like all art, can make us look at things in new ways, and one way to do that is to reimagine things. A good example is “Male Photographer Reverses Gender Roles In Sexist Vintage Ads, And Some Men Don’t Like Them”. I thought this was a really good effort, though it was far too challenging for some people. As always.

And then, just recently, we saw “Trump Hangs ‘Tacky’ Fantasy Painting of Himself With GOP Presidents in White House” and the comments have been fierce and partisan. The painter is Australian-born, and has made similar paintings of Democrats. Indeed, his work is clearly bi-partisan, and his motivation, if it can be called that, seems to be to make money. Is that not The American Way™? I think the painting is nauseating, but I’d actually say that for all his works. Despite that, I can admire his focusing his work on what would sell to the USA’s hyperpartisan market. Yes, the picture is utter crap, but full credit to the creator for working out how to market to, and take advantage of, the USA’s hyperpartisan reality.

Mind you, not everyone is happy about that hyperpartisan reality: “I’m Convinced There’s No Hope for America. Please Talk Me Out of It,” by Paul Fidalgo. I can’t contradict him.

Of course—as we all know—part of the reason the USA is so hopeless and helpless is social media, the place without rationality or reason, where discourse goes to die. And, we’re ALL things to be bought and sold, whether we know it—or agree to it—or not. For example: “Anti-social media: Facebook and surveillance capitalism”. True, dat.

Well, screw reality!! How about what we really care about?!! “WishbookWeb Catalog” has various US catalogues from days gone by (are any of them still alive?), and they’re the stuff of my younger days. The men’s underwear ads. Nuff said.

Screw politics, too, and all that junk, let’s—well, not do that. How about we consider: “Sail Away: How Enya’s ‘Orinoco Flow’ Went From a Hit to a Punch Line to a Pop Culture Anthem”. Back in the “New Age” era, I was living in Chicago, and I really did listen to a radio station, WNUA, that had as its tagline, “Music for a New Age”. One of my favourite albums from that time was a “New Age” Christmas album, and though I haven’t heard it for more than 20 years, I still remember how it made me feel. Enya, well, maybe not so much, but sometimes, sure.

And that’s it for this month’s (or is it months’?) Internet Wading. More—well, next time.


rogerogreen said...

Those of us who live within an easy drive from Van Buren's home in Kinderhook know that part of the story, OK?

Arthur Schenck (AmeriNZ) said...

Of course you do. And that's OK with me.