|Posted on September 28, 2012 at 1:45 PM|
I got nothing to really discuss this week. Kind of just winging it with blogs and whatnot, so here's another about things that bother me when I hear people complaining about them:
People Need to Stop Complaining About....
Grammar on the internet
I'm a big proponent of good grammar. If you're a journalist or writer, it's your safeguard: it's that thing that sets you apart from the rest. It's why you're a journalist, author, comic book writer, playwright or any other profession that deals with the weaving of words for news or stories.
The internet, by that I mean the general use of the internet, isn't a professional outlet. There are professional websites, and those grammatical and spelling bars should be set high there, but form a general stance of Facebook messages, blogs, tweets and forums...pretty much people typing what comes to mind and hitting "enter." They might look over it one more time, but most often than not, they're just writing what's in their head without thinking. They aren't working at a site or getting paid to write a report, so let's lay off the barrage of pointing out spelling errors or vocabulary misuses.
News sites and the like not only have those writers out there who are, usually, professionals who, usually again, went to a journalism school or studied creative writing to write their pieces, they also have the luxury of editors going through their articles or reviews or whathaveyou before putting out into the public sphere. Jonny-Facebook-Message is just writing a message on facebook. So lay off of Johnny if he uses bad grammar.
Don't get me wrong, I'm as annoyed as anyone when I see someone use "their" instead of "they're," but I'm not going to point it out. I don't know who's writing that, it could be a 12-year-old as far as I know, but what I do know is if it even appears on something that's not a professionally-ran-site, then who cares if it's misspelled and incorrect? What does pointing it out achieve for you anyways? A false sense of superiority? You're on the internet, jimbo, pointing out spelling errors. If that makes you feel superior, then go right ahead.
Speaking of inferiority complexes...
Nintendo Being "Just for Kids"
Guess what, goofus...you're complaining about videogames, so do you really want to go into the argument of who is being a child here?
Let me first inform those that might not be into gaming or still think the original Mario Brothers is the coolest thing since Edie Brickell & New Bohemians: gamers divide themselves into two categories. Actually, they just call each other these categories more than anything: "Casual" and "Hardcore." "Casual" is a term used for people who play games, but usually something simple and easy to pick up ala your iPhone with Fruit Ninja or a Guitar Hero or Wii Sports. "Hardcore" is, allegedly, people who go out and pre-order stuff, play a lot of Call of Duty, Halo, Grand Theft Auto big AAA titles and download lots of content from the internet to get new stickers on their multiplayer avatars. Hardcore gamers scoff at casual gamers the same way your cat scoffs at the notion of affection.
Also, I'm neither. Sometimes I like Angry Birds, sometimes I like Call of Duty. Most of the times I like Gunstar Heroes or Castlevania.
The question here is why are the "hardcore" (a misnomer if there ever was one) gamers so adamant about their choice in gaming being superior? They're incredibly defensive of it by attacking anything that's "not" it (and by "not" it I mean anything that's bright, colorful and looks "childish" when most of their games are dark, gray and brown and ultra-violent). I mean, is running around a fun stage doing stuff and having a good time so bad? Why shit on things people like in the first place?
Hey, want to know what's really "hardcore?" Setting aside your prejudice and just having a good time with a videogame. Age, system, affiliation and color-scheme be damned.
I'd like to think that, someday, the videogame community will come together and not try to segregate itself. To have that "we're all gamers, let's have fun!" motto. Maybe when that culture grows up, people might actually start taking videogames seriously as art forms, narrative mediums and maybe something beautiful at the end. But the community needs to earn it, you dont' deserve to be handed that in the slightest until we stop saying things like "Dude this Sucks. OMG So Kiddie!" I'll save that whole "art" thing for another time, though.
Ok. We get it. You don't like the astucious big studio remaking one of your favorite childhood films. Either that or you're just sad to see Hollywood running out of ideas. Or you don't like the idea of someone trying to re-sell you nostalgia even if they end up good. "I already paid for that in the 80s...why am I buying an inferior version of that today?"
Trust me, I completely understand.
However, whatever the reason, we get it. There's nothing left to be said about it. What does complaining about it achieve? They're going to continue to make those movies and I'm going to have to see someone on the internet bitching about it on a daily basis. That's about the extent of it. You're not going to change anything, and either way that movie is going to get made, so just let it got. They'll make their movie, and the best thing you can do is not pay to see it if you're so much against it. It's not like their taking your original film away. I bet it's sitting right there on your DVD shelf. Instead of seeing the new one, just watch that and enjoy life. Complaining about this, and so much, isn't amounting to a thing.
I find this very strange. Only because ignorance and stupidity is pretty universal so I'm not sure why people single anyone out in the first place. But I'm also doing a bit of first-hand observations on this one as well:
People from other countries that I meet that come to the Unites States say they're surprised how friendly Americans are. True, probably not as friendly as our Canadian buddies from the north (those guys are really friendly, eh) but, overall, pretty generous and nice. Of course, you have to note that most of these people come to the US and settle in places that are probably more tolerant that also coincide with tourist attractions, but still, I've met plenty from the UK, Ireland, Romania, Australia, India, Turkey, Mexico, Canada, Cuba, Germany, Spain, a lot from Russia and Eastern Europe, strangely enough, and Japan that have traveled around the United Stated. All say that are surprised how nice people in America are once they come here, so I found it not just a coincidence.
On a side note, those that come here also are surprised there aren't more fat people. Well, again, go to the non-tourists area. Go head off to Arkansas, then tell me there's no fat people. Yes, places like California and New York and Miami probably have lesser fat and overweight people, but go to my home state of Oklahoma and see the "real America." In other words, this paragraph is just to contrast assumptions. People from foreign countries come to the US to expect rude fat people. They come here and see that most are pretty nice for the most part, which I feel they'd be correct on, but also think they're all not as fat as expected, which I feel they're pretty wrong on. Actually, I don't need to "feel" that, there's statistics and facts...it's just not found in the places they go to take pictures while on vacation.
On the other end, people from this country that have traveled abroad all come back with the same stories: they were treated pretty badly. From a waiter to a taxi driver to business colleagues, I've heard a lot of these stories. Sure, I doubt it's everyone, but I also found that the many I have spoken to saying these nearly-identical things is something that can't be a coincidence either. Americans are treated pretty badly when traveling to other countries, but those traveling to here seem to say we're pretty friendly...strange assumptions hurt. So it makes me wonder, who's really the rude ones? Maybe they're getting it confused with "dumb" because, again statistically, American intelligence has been slipping. But at least I don't see a lot of Americans shitting on visitors...or the sports of other countries. Which leads me to...
Football versus Futbol
In a similar fashion, I don't know why, but people not from the United States love to rag on US sports too, in particular American football. It comes down to a) not understanding the sport and not following it (the same reasons Americans don't grasp soccer, i.e. the other football though I rarely see Americans complaining about it or mocking it to the degree I hear others with American football) and b) thinking that any sport where padding and helmets are required is for "pussies."
There's no simpler expression of ignorance than that. It's like saying "Hey, all those Canadians do is drink maple syrup and skate around." Yet, they feel in the right to do it. It's weird.
That's two Canadian references in as many entries. Weird. Let me think of another stereotype...ah: "Nintendo is for kids." There. That's fresh...
Look, I can't fully understand the cultural divide in things like sports. Soccer (football) is the most popular sport in the world except in North America just as American football is the most popular sport in North America except in the rest of the world. It has to with history and culture that nobody can really detail, so mocking one or the other is damn stupid in my book.
When I googled "People bitching" this image came up...
"The Book was Better."
How does one even say this? You have two completely different mediums and trying to find some baseline, objective assertion of one being better than the other is pretty damn short sighted. This is one of those phrases that people say, as though it's an actual critique, but doesn't mean anything. Like when someone says "Happy as a clam" but without the coolness of being called an idiom.
Want to know a good idiom: comparing apples to oranges. That's exactly what saying "The book was better" means. Now you can go into critiquing the accuracy of the adaptation if you wish, but saying one is better than the other is a difficult thing to judge because they're so different from one another. One is a two-hour visual story, the other hundreds of pages of descriptive narration. The entire point and purpose of one is completely different than the entire point and purpose of the other. If you're going to be critical, then be critical to each on their own medium's merits, not comparing one to the other much less saying "the book was better." Newsflash: reading that book and painting the whole picture in your own mind is ALWAYS going to be better.
Media's "Liberal bias."
Oh that lamestream media and those liberals...they're all out to get you, you know.
Is there anything as annoying as ignorance? I especially like the fact that so many of the conservative-right complain about how biased the media is and calling it "lamestream" when they're on those massive media outlets themselves. Sara Palin is probably the worst: always on Fox News (one of the largest cable news channels out there, actually I believe THE largest and most watched) and using that argument that all those others are just mainstream liberals hiding the truth.
This implies that all the conservative pundits out there are being sequestered and prevented from revealing the truth to all us folk.
Really? Have you seen the internet? It's this amazing thing where you can find anything and everything, even midget bowling (seriously, I just googled it). I'm pretty sure your voice is probably out there just as much as those "horrible" liberals, and this defensive argument and "everyone's against us" bullshit is getting old. Well, it's getting old to those that are at least aware of it. Those that watch Fox News all the time and nothing else probably have no idea just how false of a statement it is. It's like saying things like "I'm not racist but..." then following up with something incredibly racist.
What's amazing is that I hear it all the time. As in: nearly every day. Just think about that for a moment, person who takes their political views way too seriously: you're complaining that you aren't being heard, but everyone's hearing you on the very same platform you're saying is "biased." By the fact I'm hearing you, and so often, you're proving your own argument invalid. Then again, when people have that "us versus them" mentality that plagues political punditcy, finding fake-reasons for stuff is the only way to go.
Speaking of "I'm not racist but..."
"Mexicans are Lazy."
This isn't so much a complaint as much as it is a wrongful assertion. But I needed to put this somewhere and a blog post called "wrongful assertions" doesn't have as much of an eye-grabbing appeal as "hey, shut the fuck up and stop complaining." I've lived in Southern California for years now. Do you know who's not lazy?
Well, you should figure it out by that title entry, but it's not just the fact that Mexicans are not lazy, it's that they're so incredibly absolutely not lazy that his stereotype makes no sense. Mexicans (which is probably the wrong term here, because white people like myself generalize all Hispanic and Latino peoples as "Mexican" when many of them are probably otherwise....but you get the idea) are some hard working peoples that probably bust their asses more before 9AM than you do in a week. From family to work to making ends meet, no group of people prove their own stereotype more wrong on a regular basis.
I'm fine with stereotypes, I feel people should laugh at themselves, but this stereotype confounds me because it's so much the opposite. I can't help but think where it originated from (early 20th century white people movies, actually, the same with Chinese stereotypes...but those are so goofy it's funny). There's a lot you can stereotype with anyone, and like I said I'm all for it. Have fun. The absurdity makes the comedy. But all have that small strand of truth, and this one just doesn't have any truth in it and the sleepy, dopey Mexican too tired is just wrong...he's tired because he just busted his ass in ways you can't even fathom.
That "There's Nothing Good at the Movies"
Bullshit. You just aren't looking. Just because something at your megaplex put out by a major studio isn't catching your fancy and looks bad, there's a ton of movies every week that, if you expanded your horizons a bit, you can probably rush out to see.
For example, a couple of weekends ago was the worst weekend for movies in years, the highest grossing film making less than 10 Million Dollars. "There's no good movies out" isn't an excuse, because chances are you aren't aware of other good movies coming out because they aren't overly-promoted, but another good chance is that there's big movies you haven't even seen yet either. Did you see Paranorman yet? Moonrise Kingdom? Beasts of the Southern Wild? To Rome With Love? How about Dredd which ended up flopping yet was completely awesome? Maybe something really limited in release like Ruby Sparks playing near you? Or are you just looking at the big ads in the paper and online?
Now, I'll be honest, this is probably more of an incorrect turn of phrase than anything. It's not that there's "nothing good at the movies" it's that there's nothing that personally interests you or that is unavailable in your area (like last week's awesome re-release of Raiders of the Lost Ark in IMAX). There's always something good out there. Every week. Just look for it. Not everything has to be a big Expendables 2, Dark Knight or Avengers, you know. For a film fan like me, there's something I want to see every week. But even if you are picky, trust me, you can find something out there.
And now I should probably take my own advice...