July 9, 2010

The Weeklies #140

The Weekly Proclamation. Prince claims that the internet is dead so it must be true, right?

The Weekly Read. Richard Flanagan's Evening's Empire was a little daunting at first glance. It was big and thick clocking in at 650 pages and the advanced copy I was sent had tiny print. I contemplated reading it a few times but finally decided to tackle it. I'm so glad I did. The book chronicles 40 years in the of the fictitious band The Ravons and its members, the central character and narrator being Jack Flynn, the band's manager. What I think impressed me most about the novel was the fact that it was so understated. Flanagan had every opportunity to rehash real-life tales of on-the-road depravity - trashing hotel and dressing rooms, nailing groupies, snorting mountains of coke - but he didn't. The Ravons weren't always well behaved but instead of going for over-the-top drama, Flanagan instead focused on the characters, their stories, and the rise and fall of the recording industry. It was fascinating, incredibly well-written, and maybe the best thing I've read so far in 2010.

The Weekly Music. Earlier in the week I copped to the fact that I own Lady Gaga's The Fame. What can I say? Everyone is talking about her. She's more popular on Facebook than the President. I had to see what the buzz was about. And I have to admit though I'm a rock and roll kind of guy, she's got some talent and comes up with some catchy tunes. It borders on pop genius. Maybe it crosses the line. I'm not going to give up my Zeppelin albums or anything, but you could do a lot worse.

The Weekly Foreshadowing. An odd, obscure board game is all the rage these days. It's called BP Offshore Oil Strike. Marketed in the 1970s, the game allows players to build off-shore oil platforms and deal with the cleanup when they inevitably fail. I wish this was a joke.

The Weekly Schadenfreude. Lindsay Lohan is headed to jail for 90 days on a probation violation. Now, I'm in no way defending Lohan who is indefensible but shouldn't jail be reserved for truly terrible people who do awful things? Not terrible actresses with substance abuse issues? Lindsay should be sentenced to clean up the homes of parents who have lost their kids to drug abuse or work with ten year old terminal cancer patients. Something that helps her understand that the the world isn't all about her and that there are bigger issues than being relegated to acting in shitty straight-to-DVD movies.

The Weekly Question. Is the internet a fad or does it have staying power? How would you be most impacted if it disappeared overnight?

Posted by Chris at July 9, 2010 7:00 AM

I would go crazy if the Internet disappeared overnight! It's so much a part of how I keep up with my friends and family!
About Lindsey Lohen. You know, the only way Robert Downey jr. cleaned up was going to prison where he HAD to get cleaned up. Lindsey will be going to a prison drug rehab, not the cushy celeb rehabs. It worked for him, I sure hope it will work for her.

Posted by: Maribeth at July 9, 2010 7:31 AM

I think Lindsay does need the jail time - because none of the soft love has worked, and she needs the tough kind. She won't spend very long, due to overcrowding, but maybe it'll be enough for her to realize that this is the direction her life is heading if she doesn't straighten out. I'd like to see her undergo some intensive therapy and rehab (though prison likely involves going cold turkey? I'm not sure what influences her money and notoriety might give her...) But yes, after the cold gray cell, I think helping out some families, via MADD or something, could be a very good thing for her (providing the Mothers didn't get ridiculously angry, and show compassion for someone who is, granted, a big screw up and spoiled brat in a lot of ways, but also someone obviously full of a lot of hurts and issues, to whom hopefully compassion, grace and tough love just might get through.) Because seriously, girl, DUIs and cocaine? SO DAMN LUCKY no one got hurt! It was and is only a matter of time before she kills someone if she doesn't get her act together!

*ahem*. Not that you asked about that :P Shiny happy rainbows and puppies? What? If we lost the internet, I would lose connection would some friends who have become very dear to me. A couple of us have snail mail addresses, so I'd likely send letters for the first little while...I don't know if it'd keep up, though. And I'd miss you, Beth and the kids, I'd miss Kim Zoot and her little brood, Mir Kamin (at WouldaCouldaShoulda) and her heartbreaking and heartwarming stories about her pseudonym-ed offspring, Amalah and Noah and the Mighty Ez, how those two ladies especially have an amazing ability to make me laugh and cry - often within the same post. Over the years, I've found myself attached, even though we don't necessarily "talk" often - I remember TTC, anxiously awaiting news of Mia's safe delivery, the arrival of your beautiful blue-eyed boy - and seeing the myriad ways your lives have changed from the total yuppies you were when we first 'met' ;) I have seen you and Beth grow into wonderful, loving parents, fully immersed in the awe of your children (not to say that you don't ever experience some of the SUPER FUN (/sarcasm) parts of parenthood!) I often find myself talking about "my friends Chris and Beth...except I've never met them, but, well, I've known them for years, from their blogs...so um, my blogfriends Chris and Beth..." (how's that for an awkward intro!) I was telling my friend Sara just the other day that her daughter Rachel is about the same age as Mia, and I've wondered if in a smaller world they might be friends. (They're both ridiculously adorable, so there's something in common to get them started of! ha.)
Anyway! I guess that whole novel there was a bit of, "I love you man!" (except less in the awkward drunk declaration way) and I'm hoping the Internet doesn't drop off the face of the earth anytime soon. Because the sad thing is- as we go through stages of life, and changes and moves and whatever else - sometimes the Internet friends can actually be the more constant!
And no matter if it's "IRL" or online, I am so grateful for every friend I have.

Posted by: Heather at July 9, 2010 7:50 AM

Lose the net? Horrors!!

I've made so many online friends, learned so much, and even met a few local folks in real life through the net.

I was isolated before the computer. Now I'm not.

Posted by: Ann Elizabeth Adams at July 9, 2010 8:06 AM

As someone mentioned, Lindsey will get out early due to "overcrowding", remember Paris Hilton?

Did you see her twitter posts about her human rights being violated and "cruel and unusual punishment"?

She does need to be shipped off for a year to work with women and children living in poverty and oppression, single moms who struggle to just be able to feed their kids, domestic violence abuse victims, orphans, communities trying to recover from hurricanes/floods/other natural disasters.....just to learn some humility and that the world does not revolve around her.

Posted by: Lisa at July 9, 2010 8:18 AM

I'd lose my job, so that's a bummer. Socially, I'd probably just read more books.

Posted by: Brad at July 9, 2010 8:31 AM

I think some parts of the internet are dead. Most bloggers I know don't update anymore (you are a rare exception -- thank you!!), and personal websites don't seem as popular as they once were. But, FB is alive and well (and fun -- I would have hated to admit that two years ago). I do more and more of my shopping online. It's just interesting how it's all evolved and what has staying power.

The biggest impact that a lack of internet would have on my life is that I'd have to pick up the phone and call people. I don't have a cell phone and rarely use my home phone because almost all of my remote (not in person) communication is via e-mail and FB. It would be frustrating to go back to a time when none of that was possible. But I wouldn't miss the non-personal communication aspects of the internet much. When I vacation and am away from the internet for long stretches, I remember that there is real life out there. :-)

Posted by: Sandy at July 9, 2010 9:51 AM

I unashamedly follow Britney Spears and Lindsay Lohan on TMZ. And only because I remember what that was like. The complete and utter denial that there is a problem. Jail time is often best. It seems the lowest place one could get. And sometimes that's what it takes for that realization to hit you. I sincerely hope it works for her.

Posted by: k8 at July 9, 2010 10:02 AM

i was just thinking yesterday about what i'd do if the internet actually did die. . .

i decided i'd cease to exist as well.

i'm an information whore, and am wholly addicted to "looking things up" not to mention the instant gratification/affirmation of my existence that are tweets, e-mails and comments.

Posted by: Nichole at July 9, 2010 10:16 AM

I really try to ignore information about these celebs and their issues. My life is needs my attention.

Plus who cares about where Lebron went?! Not me.

I think the internet is here to stay. If it did disappear, I would lose alot of new "friends" like the Cactus-Fish family. :)

Posted by: debb at July 9, 2010 11:09 AM

Really could care less about Lindsay Lohan, but I hope it helps...maybe then I wouldn't have to read about her everywhere.

The Internet cannot be dead...nor can it go away, for several reasons:

1. How would I keep in contact will all of my online friends?
2. How can I make more online friends?
3. I would have to start my research all over and I would never finish my degree!!

Posted by: Krush at July 9, 2010 12:23 PM

First of all that game SICKENS ME. That was like something created by Notradamis (sp?) in the prediction of the chaotic world we are living in.
*I am wearing my shirt with a giant pelican that states "Save Me From BP" today!*
Have you read "Running with Scissors?" I am reading that now and would be really enlightened to see what you have to say about the book if you have indeed read it....
I love the internet, mostly to feed my love of reading and craziness. As a teacher it is a major source of information and extension to the classroom (when I find something that is TRUE and deemable!)
Have an awesome weekend!

Posted by: Cheryl at July 9, 2010 1:21 PM

Prince is a Jehovah's Witness, so the internet is only dead to HIM.

If it disappeared I would be annoyed only because I despise the phone and would have to actually talk to my friends on it to communicate, and would miss out on opportunities that are much easier to find out about on the World Wide Web. :)

Posted by: Poppy at July 9, 2010 4:04 PM

um, i would be LOST without my internet. what would i mindlessly click on while watching mindless tv before bed?

ps. you are so right about Lindsay.

Posted by: kati at July 9, 2010 6:07 PM

I didn't think much of Lady Gaga more than fluff that annoyed me that I liked until I read a couple of articles about her and how she's hyper focussed on her craft



Your endorsement might make me go deeper into her stuff (i.e. beyond the radio stuff)

If the internets disappeared, I'd find something else to waste my time (I've been wasting my time since way before the internex. Also, I wouldn't feel guilty about never having figured out how to embed links into comments!

Posted by: harmzie at July 9, 2010 8:52 PM

The internet has been around for over forty years. I doubt it will "die" -- more likely it will morph into something else, exactly the same way it morphed into something else when they opened the doors to commercialising it back in 1995.

Posted by: Kat at July 9, 2010 9:57 PM

I would have a really hard time without the internet. It's my main way of keeping in touch with people. For a really long time I kept in touch with my clients over the phone, so the last thing I wanted to do was call people. In person is fine, but I didn't want to call people. The internet makes it so much easier! Plus I love seeing everyone's pictures :)

Posted by: Rose @Dozenroses13 at July 10, 2010 12:41 AM

God, do you know how many arguments I've won because of the net?

And how am I going to identify that flag?

I don't understand Lady Gaga's appeal at all. She seems ordinary to me. Sorry.

Posted by: Nat at July 10, 2010 10:26 PM

I would actually have to write letters to my friends or call them. I'm too lazy to do that anymore. Also, I would have to buy clothes in stores, trying on bathing suits in sterile, fluorescent-lit dressing rooms instead of my own bedroom. Sounds dreadful.

Posted by: Laura Gato at July 11, 2010 1:59 PM

I took 1 st loan when I was 20 and it supported me a lot. However, I need the car loan over again.

Posted by: Janell18Holmes at August 11, 2011 9:56 PM