Friday, May 13, 2005

Five Things I Don't Get

Since I'm going to be rooming with him soon at our alma mater reunion, I'll take this meme from Hugh and run with it...

List five things that people in your circle of friends or peer group are wild about, but you can't really understand the fuss over.


  1. SUVs. I live in one of the most urban environments on the East Coast. There is no practical reason why anyone should own and operate an SUV. Really. No reason. Yes, the D.C. area gets a big snowfall every 7-10 years, but in that case the rest of the area is all but shut down so there's nowhere to go. Besides, they're rude. Yes, rude. I drive a compact sedan that's easily 2-3 feet shorter than the average SUV. I can't see around them in traffic or even in a parking lot. How much space do you think you need?

  2. McMansions. Again, how much space do you think you need? I live in a very small house in Arlington, VA that was built in 1941. It has two floors, each comprising an area just under 850 square feet. We do most of our living on the main floor and we have plenty of space. (Would I like a larger kitchen? Sure, but we can swing that remodel easily without substantially increasing the overall footprint of the house.) Recently, some rather large houses were completed and went on the market for $1.6 million. The square footage is somewhere over the 5000 mark. Um, why? Do you have a cleaning staff to take care of all that space? And I haven't even touched the heating and cooling issues. The last thing that annoys me about these TajMaHouses is that they are invariably built on tiny plots of land (at least around these parts). The result is that you have no back yard to speak of. That's lame. Besides, I need my nice-sized back yard to practice my croquet game so I can one day beat my wife!

  3. Golf. The only part of my Scottish heritage that I don't understand. It's a silly game, people. Silly. And I don't care how cool it looks when Tiger pumps his fist in victory, hitting a little white ball into a little tin cup is nowhere near as impressive to me as a long pass for a touchdown, a grand slam homerun or a 15-round KO. You gotta wonder about a game where people brag about their "handicaps"...

  4. Nostalgia for the Recent Past. Just stop watching "I (Heart) the 70s" and "I (Heart) the 80s", ok? You look pathetic. You're on your way to becoming those assholes in the 1980s who were busy pining for the 1950s (and some of those same folks are still pining). Look, this is a great time to be alive. Really! The internet alone blows away anything that we considered cool in the 80s. I love my life now: I'm married to a fabulously smart and sexy woman who is my best friend, I drive a safe and stylish car that gets great gas mileage even though it's approaching the 100,000 mile mark on the odometer and I'm all finished with school forever. Ok, I'll gladly admit that I still enjoy the music of my youth, but that hasn't stopped me from becoming a huge fan of The Chemical Brothers, Franz Ferdinand, Pearl Jam, Sleater-Kinney and The Crystal Method. Look around, folks: the twenty-first century is a pretty cool place.

  5. Sports Video Games. (This is to tweak my roomie, who took the opposite POV.) You've got sports on television 24 hours a day. No matter where you live in this country, you can watch some kind of sporting event live. Heck, you can even play in any number of organized leagues. So why are you wasting your time on your couch pretending you're Kobe Bryant? When I play a video game, I want to be immersed in a strange landscape. I want to be taken away to another world, or view my world through a slightly different prism. I'd rather be scared out of my wits playing Doom than pretend that I'm a digitized Jason Giambi. Unless digital steroids come in the game box...

3 comments:

oddangel said...

I think you just saved me writing my own answers to this meme. Those items rank at the top of my "head scratching" list.

As an addendum to number one: What's up with all these bloated machines parking in *compact* parking spaces, especially when there are plenty other good ones available. Don't look now but YOU DON'T FIT!

Alison said...

Interesting - I find those "I heart the whatever" shows fascinating, possibly because so much of it is stuff I never experienced the first time around. I once commented that I am not really a child of the seventies, and the person I was talking to (may actually have been you, Spoon) shot back "oh please - how many times have you seen Saturday Night Fever?" To which the answer was (and is) "none." I also didn't see Star Wars on a big screen until 1999. My first exposure to any kind of pop culture didn't come until the mid-80s, so I get to watch these shows like an anthropologist. Makes it kinda fun.

Totally with you on SUVs. There are at least two Hummers in Knox County. At least one of them is school bus yellow. It looks absurd.

By the way, Pearl Jam features rather prominently in one of the episodes of "I love the 90s." *grin*

John B. said...

Yes, the McMansion phenomena really amazes me, too.

Our family of 5 lives quite comfortably in a 1500 or so square foot house.

One problem with the extra large houses is that families are no longer forced to associate or live in close proximity with each other...everyone can go to their own end of the house to be by themselves, no siblings need to room together, etc. . Nobody is forced to interact or speak with one another anymore.

And then we wonder why the family structure is going to hell...