pop culture

What I’m Reading and Thinking About This Week

Got some links for you today, like most Fridays.  These are the things that got me reading and thinking this week.  Enjoy!

Running into My 12-Year-Old Self Online (Buzzfeed)

This sweet, pensive piece about the detritus that we leave on the internet is really surprising in that it doesn’t go at all where I thought it would.  The author talks about finding an Amazon wish list she made at the end of her seventh-grade year, and how it still relates to her now, some 14 years later.  It’s a smart, quick read, and it’s full of the kind of nostalgia stuff that Buzzfeed readers love, but it’s also got some things to think about:

On the other hand I experience a joy that there is a continuity between the girl who wrote this list and whoever I am now….

…Spending whole days on Twitter, refreshing Facebook, watching a website like BuzzFeed turn over with the new, with the new, I often forget that most of the internet isn’t being looked at by anyone. The internet is not just the white water of the breaking wave. It’s all the crap, some of it lovely and meaningful to only you, that sits at the ocean’s bottom.

What’s horrifying to me is that I still have a Diaryland from grades 11-12 on the internet, and I can’t get rid of it.  UGH.

Internet Piracy Isn’t Killing Hollywood–Hollywood is Killing Hollywood (Daily Dot)

The hat tip for this one goes to J., who loves me and knows me well.  He sent this to me knowing I would love it because it hits many of my sweet spots: a think piece about piracy, a think piece about how terrible Hollywood movies are, etc.  It’s not a very long piece, and while I don’t think it’s earth-shattering information for anyone who keeps an ear to the ground when it comes to download sharing and the flagging movie business, it offers support for the fact that Hollywood is at fault for their worst summer (ever?):

In regards to Hollywood’s current summer slate, customers voted with their wallets. They don’t want what Hollywood is offering, in part because its continuously catering to a demographic losing interest in the movies…Women are not interested in seeing movies so generically masculine they’re tantamount to a two-hour Dr. Pepper Ten commercial. Summer 2014 was so brutal because Hollywood ignored the most profitable demographic—not because of The Pirate Bay.

I would add that part of the reason I see less movies in the theater is because fellow theater goers are so awful–I don’t want to hear you respond to every line spoken onscreen, and I certainly don’t want to listen to you make calls to multiple girls asking “what’s up” in a blatant attempt to get laid later.  THIS HAS HAPPENED MORE THAN ONCE.

Israel Has Broken My Heart: I’m a Rabbi in Mourning for a Judaism Being Murdered by Israel (Slate)

This is an incredibly long piece, and I certainly don’t expect many people to read the whole thing, but I think it’s pretty important.  While I definitely don’t agree with everything the Rabbi says (he comes from a place of faith that I don’t possess, and that colors both of our interpretations), he makes some important, pitch-perfect points:

The worship of the state makes it necessary for Jews to turn Judaism into an auxiliary of ultra-nationalist blindness. Every act of the State of Israel against the Palestinian people is seen as sanctioned by God. Each Sabbath Jews in synagogues around the world are offered prayers for the well-being of the State of Israel but not for our Arab cousins.  The very suggestion that we should be praying for the Palestinian people’s welfare is seen as heresy and proof of being “self-hating Jews.”

He tends to get a little sermon-y throughout it, but he reaches out to both Jews and non-Jews alike:

For our non-Jewish allies, the following plea: Do not let the organized Jewish community intimidate you with charges that any criticism of Israel’s brutality toward the Palestinian people proves that you are anti-Semites. Stop allowing your very justified guilt at the history of oppression your ancestors enacted on Jews to be the reason you fail to speak out vigorously against the current immoral policies of the State of Israel.

The comments, of course, are kind of a shitshow.  Because people cannot (still) accept any criticism of Israel.  For whatever insane reason.  Despite the fact that THEY ARE COMMITTING WAR CRIMES.

What got you thinking this week?

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