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« Alcoholic fumes | Main | Fact for the Day »

May 20, 2008


Michael Blowhard writes:

Dear Blowhards --

* The way things are going, it won't be long before today's unashamed, self-webcasting kids will be including clips like these on their resumes. (Strongly NSFW.) My guess is that the business world will find some way to adapt.

* Good news for those with big cabooses.

* Gil Roth notices an important European political development.

* Michael Bierut recalls that, when he worked as a shoe salesman, he enjoyed measuring people's feet. A sweet and personal blogposting, if not as kinky as you might hope.

* A catlike ease with contradictions, a juicy love of words, many instinctive moments of wonder ... MD is blogging again.

* Wifezilla has trouble finding full-fat plain yogurt. America: Enough already with the fear of fat.

* So maybe Rachel Carson was right?

* As Boomers retire and Yers take on more responsibilites, how is the world going to change?

* Sounds pretty tough, being a "nice guy" of Asian descent.

* Ballet dancers: Talk about artists who suffer for their art.

* Doesn't it seem as though a new market bubble appears every day? Eric Janszen doesn't think this pattern is going to end soon. "The bubble cycle has replaced the business cycle," he writes.

* Carla Thompson thinks that more black people ought to get as upset about black-on-black murders as they do about police brutality.

* Sign up for Jimmy Moore's low-carb cruise.

* Dave Milano explains some of the reasons why raw milk has come to be such a fascinating issue.

* Welmer offers an eloquent examination of some of of the predicaments today's young men grapple with.

* I enjoyed Pietro's album of snapshots of Leon Krier's new old town Poundbury. Me, I think Krier's an underrecognized major culture figure. Here's an appreciative piece about one of Krier's books.

* Seth Roberts loves Mondoweiss.

* Following Seth's Shangri-La Diet, Stephen M. has taken off 55 pounds, and has kept it off.

* MBlowhard Rewind: If modernistic architecture is all about thrills and originality, why do so many of the most screamingly up-to-date examples resemble each other?



posted by Michael at May 20, 2008


Rachel Carson's Silent Spring was an environmental book but was also a great book about government corruption. For example: several of the cities and towns mentioned in the book which sprayed for insect control in the 60's were ones that fell for the high pressure sales techniques of large chemical firms that wanted to sell them insecticides. These were then sprayed over the towns mentioned in the book with the effect of killing most birds nesting in the towns. When asked what exactly they were spraying for the officials from these towns couldn't answer and just gave defensive responses.

Posted by: Robert on May 22, 2008 12:49 PM

My guess is that the business world will find some way to adapt.

My guess is that they will not need to adapt. Let's face it, the girls that post these kinds of pictures and videos are not likely to become Molecular Biologists and Bankers. Yes, yes, I know that YOU know some girl that is a big time manager and she has posted some racy stuff, but, still.

Now, for the guys, that is a different issue. I know that many young men have sorta checked out of the rat-race. But, they may decide to check back in at some point. Then, it may come to haunt them.

However, to address your point more directly, I believe that the business world reacted to it without knowing about it. So many companies nowadays rely on consultants. Your local Electrical Plant, well, they don't feel like having an in-house programmer to create these dynamic reporting systems, so, call the consultant. They don't really care about background checks. You are not working with their daughters, hell, you are probably spending only a few hours total at the headquarters. You just do the job and leave. The guy that helped you with that hole in your roof, did you do a background check?

No. Of course not. He seemed like an OK guy. He did that other roof down the block, and he is quoting a reasonable price. "Get to work son".

Gen Y cares about the world. They pay attention to politics, the economy, social causes, and environmental issues.

Yes, Gen Y does care about the world, they just don't care about Detroit or Brownsville. Just like Lady Di cared about those landmines in Viet Nam, but not so much for the violent underclass in her backyard.

Caring about the one makes you look real good. Caring about the other means that you will have to make some real hard choices.

Oh, on the Rachel Carson thing...don't forget about the rebuttal that they posted. Quite smart.

Posted by: Ian Lewis on May 22, 2008 2:58 PM

that welmer link is excellent -- the beginnings of a "man"ifesto are there. the age of duty and chivalry really is dead it would seem.

Posted by: roissy on May 22, 2008 3:17 PM

There's some contention over where exactly Gen Y starts and stops - some say those born 1983-1997, others think 1982-1997.

...are you serious? Sarah Perez, you are not covering the contemporary version of the Guelphs and the Ghibellines. I first thought this was a subtle poke at the retards in the debate, but the rest of the column doesn't allow me to think she is subtle or perceptive.

Note that the common factor underlying almost all of Gen Y's features are that they are becoming more girlified. And you thought Gen X males were mediocre and insipid.

They Don't Care About Your Ad, They Care What Their Friends Think

Unlike every previous generation that responded less to the constant force field of peer pressure and more to some goofy ad.

Work Isn't Their Whole World

Since work isn't anybody's whole world, what does that imply about Gen Y -- that it's just 3% of their world?

Gen Y hasn't known much unemployment and they're not going to put up with being treated poorly just for sake of a paycheck.

The younger ones are in college, so obviously they have known unemployment -- or employment either. The older ones are facing a recession. Let's see if they learned anything from the clueless Gen X-ers who thought they could weather the dot-com burst of the '90s.

They're Socially Conscious

Just like every previous generation of imbecilic college and graduate students. In fairness, though, they are less likely to be feminist.

Most of Gen Y had to learn the hard way about the perils of posting everything online

Yeah, figuring out not to post those pictures of the time you got blindingly drunk, took off your bra, and ended up with the football team's dicks in your mouth is one of those "gotta learn it the hard way" things.

In the same way that an older brother enjoys teaching his younger brother how to shoot a 3-pointer, Gen Y can feel good for having tutored future generations of foresightless morons in the mysterious of appropriate behavior.

Finally, listen to the following phrases:

They're also wary of old folks, like their boss, trying to "friend" them in their social space, especially if they're tragically un-hip wannabes.

(Oh, and you can stop calling everything "viral" - that's lame.)

Sarah Perez looks like she's at least in her late 20s, so by definition she already is a tragically un-hip wannabe. Those last three buzz-words went out of fashion at least 5 years ago, more like 10. The same is true for "that's lame," a phrase the reeks of Gen X-ness. (I think Y-ers would instead say "that's gay" or "that's retarded.")

Why do so many people who write about The Next Generation feel like they have to prove how with it they are? I made friends with two 18 year-old freshmen this year, and it wasn't because I tried to act like some MySpace-obsessed, video-game-playing fag their own age.

Just be the cool person that you are, and you will automatically stand out to them. Interacting with younger people can be refreshing (especially if they're female), but trying to imitate them is contemptible. And counter-productive: nothing is more lame than a lame oldperson using "lame" to show how not-lame they are.

Posted by: agnostic on May 22, 2008 5:20 PM

So keep your copy of 'Silent Spring'...but put it on a high shelf next to 'On the Road' and 'Howl'.

Then proceed against malaria with a clear mind.

Posted by: Robert Townshend on May 22, 2008 6:32 PM

Rachel Carson was a drunk and a nut who achieved an undeserved Sainthood.

Posted by: vanderleun on May 22, 2008 7:58 PM

thx for the link.

*I recently decided to start eating healthier - blech. I'm not sure it's worth it.

Posted by: MD on May 22, 2008 8:09 PM

I have to say that ever since reading the study that showed that no-fat milk = increased chance of cancer, I've been eating some full fat yogurt.

Greek God Yogurt, Artemis, is full fat. Strained (so it has less wasted moisture and fewer sugar type carbs). I used to eat it with sugar (before I gave up sugar) and it is like cheesecake. Just as good without the sugar, once you get used to it. My eight year old will eat it for dessert.

Thanks for the link, btw.

Posted by: Stephen M (Ethesis) on May 22, 2008 9:32 PM

If you really like your yogurt...

Take as much powdered full-cream milk as you like and dissolve it in your very biggest pot, adding hot water to bring the mix to blood-temp. Get a couple of spoonfulls of store-bought yogurt (active) if you haven't got some starter, dilute it, and mix it in to the milk. (Personally, I like it very rich: more than a kilo of powder to the gallon.)

Throw blankets, parkas etc over the covered pot and forget it. Eight hours or so will give you a mild yogurt, but I'm a twenty hour man, preferring it sour as all buggery.

This takes about five minutes of work, and costs maybe five Aussie dollars.

Of course, this method only works on big quantities, because small batches lose heat too quickly in the ferment...but who wants small quantities when the stuff only gets better with time in the fridge?

And, like the lady said, go for FULL FAT. There's no extra charge for Greek-style.


Posted by: Robert Townshend on May 22, 2008 10:22 PM

Of course, there has been a lot of hyperbole on both sides with regard to the whole DDT issue, but the burden of proof still seems to lie with those who banned the stuff, and nothing in the "Prospect" article contradicts that. The anti-DDT people have been frantic ever since the WHO (no bastion of conservatism) reversed the ban in 2006, and the article in question just seems yet another attempt to prove, fairly unsuccessfully, that the ban was right all along. All questions of public health aside, this battle seems to be more about who was right back in the 1960's than anything going on today. Funny how many things in our politics seem to boil down to that. In a way, the battles of the 1960's are still going on.

How long, oh Lord, how long?....

Posted by: tschafer on May 25, 2008 7:43 PM

I have little sympathy for people of any age who post indiscriminately online. I'm a little older than the featured group, but not by much— and I learned about online discretion at the age of eight, when I was introduced to BBSing. It's very simple— don't post anything you don't want your mother, your boss, or your enemy to read.

Because of this, I can post using my own name. It makes things so much simpler...

Posted by: B. Durbin on May 26, 2008 1:35 PM

The Carson defense team includes Tim Lambert, a guy who's been wrong about a lot of other stuff, and in a consistently lefty way. And you can't get much wronger than lefty wrong! So I take his arguments for Carson with several megatonnes of salt.

Posted by: PatrickH on May 26, 2008 10:49 PM

How long, tschafer? Till all those who came of age in the '60s are dead, of course! ;)

Posted by: Will S. on May 27, 2008 11:18 AM

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