Friday, August 05, 2005

calm blue ocean

Is it churlish of me to be irritated that the Times tomato article was the #2 most-emailed article the other day (proof from Gawker)? Surely we're all one big happy vanguard, as noted below? As long as you ignore the farmer's market three blocks away, which has better tomatoes, cheaper.

I could have let it go, if not for the Jenn-Air ad announcing the end of civilization in the latest Saveur: ext. shot of one of those durable-goods fantasy kitchens, loaded with titantiun ice-crushers and warming drawers, or whatever shiny objects the man has demanded you gather for a suitably emerilific nest. Roof garden above. Text:

Can you imagine cooking with anything less than heirlooms? (Neither can we). [sic]

Aside from the punctuation [where do they find these copywriters anyway? Even the Chinese won't pay for this kind of branding], the most enraging thing here is the reification of the category of heirloom. It pains me to have to say it again, but quality is independent of pollination method. Whatever, I can't bear to go through all the layers of nouveau riche stupidity embedded therein. I give up. I take back all the mean things I said about Julie Powell. Time to kill all the yuppies.

As long as I'm in a bad mood, I must apologize to any of you foolish enough to follow my advice and watch the PBS Guns, Germs, and Steel. They could have done all three shows in half an hour without losing anything except the soft focus shots of natives dispensing their wisdom. The thing moved at the pace of a fifth grade filmstrip, and at approximately the same level of sophistication. You could have read half the book in those three hours. The ceaseless repetition of the title phrase as a kind of lazy hendiadys for the not-so-complex-in-the-first-place idea (development) was like verbal water torture. At least it served the function of reminding me of the book's flaws, which multiply quickly as it enters recorded history. But still worth reading.


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