Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Sacred and unholy cows

I was reading this AV Club article about cultural "sacred cows" --- things you enjoy so much you will brook no criticism of them, or that are even potential deal breakers when it comes to friendship. Do I have any sacred cows?

Well, there are some things that I love, but typically, you not liking them isn't going to drastically change my opinion of you. I must admit have little patience with tired old tropes being wheeled out as an excuse for your ignorance --- Dylan can't sing, Elvis Presley was a thief, Shakespeare is way over-played because he's a Dead White Male, etc. Like the man says, at least do your homework before attacking your betters. Dylan can sing, and with greater expression than most of his peers; Elvis was a brilliant musician who excelled as synthesizing genres, and who was greatly respected by many of his black contemporaries; Shakespeare is over-played because he's good, we don't think he's good because he's over-played, dummy.

However, as long as you're not just spouting ignorant inanities, I can understand your reluctance to embrace the things I love, and it doesn't bother me in the least. Like the other man said, if everyone loved what you loved, you'd have a heck of a time getting tickets. And hey, if Dylan's voice is a turn-off to you, I can sympathize. It is something of a hurdle. And maybe they just talk too darn fast in those classic Bogart and Bacall films for you to follow along, too. That's okay. You don't have to enjoy the greats.

There are also, to use a parallel metaphor of my own, cultural "unholy cows" --- really bad stuff that I hate. If you embrace and revere my unholy cows, that too need not be a deal breaker. You enjoy the music of Korn, Creed, Jay-Z, some tween retard shoved into a recording studio because she's got a pair of boobs and a willingness to show 'em? That's okay; I quite enjoy the puerile poseur punk stylings of Green Day, myself. Not to mention Steve Miller. You laugh and laugh at Adam Sandler movies? Um... well, all right. I've bust a gut at a few dumb jokes in my time. That's okay. You're... probably... still not a total loser.

But! If you both reject my sacred cows and embrace my unholy cows --- then, sir or madam, we have a problem. Your favorite film is Night of the Museum, and you turned Seven Samurai off when one time you accidentally caught some of it? You have all of Avenged Sevenfold's albums, but think Tom Waits is a laughingstock? You think "Family Guy" is the epitome of hilarity, and don't understand why people say "The Simpsons" is better?

Well, you better get along back to your village, because you can't stay here, idiot.

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