You remember that scene in ET when Elliott find's ET lying in a ditch or creek wrapped in a white sheet. Then their entire house is quarantined like a giant bubble, hazzmat suits everywhere, and Elliott and ET are locked the bathroom. Well this is the future folks, between monolithic and microscopic aliens we're all pretty much doomed. Sure this may seem pesimistic, but get it while the getting is good.
While some of us are used to silence and others noise. Many of us thrive in urban arenas while some burgeon in rural roundabouts. Ebola has infected Williamsburg and of all holy places the Gutter, Halloween approaches, the weather chills, the harvest moon was in full effect, we can only contemplate whether or not are we're the only life in this vast cosmos? Luckily thanks to Dr. Neil DeGrasse Tyson we have a broader perception of our universe and beyond. Sure many people out there still believe the world is flat, and was created in 7 days to only to be fooled by Eve the femme-fetal fatalist. But the question still remains; is the city or countryside scarier?
Sure the city has the constant threat of terrorism, bioterrorism, bombings, nuclear radiation, shootings, getting run over, Ebola, Swine Flu, Bird Flu, Mad Cow Disease, rape, STDs, bed bugs, hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, and a random AC falling out a window. But the truth is New York City's crime rate is much lower than much of the country, especially compared to Richmond Virginia where I hale from. Other rural areas are more susceptible to car accidents, drunk drivers, psycho serial killers, radical religions, avalanches and mudslides, animal and bug attacks, as well as hunting accidents. Sure it is all fun and games until someone gets hurt, but sometimes boredom and nothingness can lead to overall weirdness. So while I do like to escape, I like to think in the city keeps me social, in touch with mankind, like we're all in this together, me and the homeless man vs. Ebola.
Personally being in the middle of nowhere, alone, whether camping, hiking, living, and especially swimming are beyond terrifying. Which is why I've invested in an Alien UFO-O2 magnometer. Yes for $50 bucks I can test the magnetic radioactive waves around me and see into the unknown, the only requirement is electricity and aliens. Sure this is slightly impractical for camping, luckily I have multiple apps on my mobile phone. Unfortunately this is also slightly irrational because without cellphone service I'm screwed. Now I'm confident I'm a sure fire lure for martians, since I vaguely recall seeing them in my room as a child and at the dentist office when I was having my wisdom teeth extracted. Obviously it was an out of body experience meets alien body abduction. So based on this experience and the fact we are the only lifeforms out there, I've lined my entire apartment in aluminum foil and decided to dress entirely in aluminum so the aliens and government can't detect my wave lengths. Sure it cost a fortune, plus I'm covered head to toe in cuts and going to bathroom is nightmare, but they're arn't about to rain on this beautiful brain.
100 Objects of Popular and Material Culture is an blog exploring the manifestations of human consumption and commodity-ization. The purpose of this experiment is to explore material and popular culture in contemporary society by using objects and concepts to prompt wider questions and reflections. So by emulating The British Museum's and Neil MacGregor's format of A History of the World in 100 Objects I plan to satirically analyze and reinterpreted 100 material culture objects over the course of 2014. Material Culture is the study of our culture's consumption of stuff; namely the manifestation of culture through material productions where people's perceptions of objects is socially and culturally dependent. With this, objects reflect conscious and unconscious beliefs on the the individuals who fabricated, purchased, or used them, and by extension the society where they live. So examining materiality, cultural truths and societal assumptions may be discovered. As anthropologist Arjun Appaduai states "in any society the individual is often caught between the cultural structure of commodity-ization and his own personal attempts to bring a value and order to the universe of things." Objects and commodities make up a much larger symbolic system consisting of want and need, socio-economic status, fashion, etc. Often times form follows function whether the commodity, market, and or consumer forever evolve around one-another. Philosopher Pierre Bourdieu's theories of capital flow full circle; where regardless if you are a minimalist or a hoarder the world is made up of things and everyone will leave their footprint on the earth. So by humorously analyzing marketed objects and concepts, hopefully this blog will provide further incite into ideas of over-consumption, a disposable society, consumerism vs. anti-consumers, planned obsolescence vs. sustainability, as well as the greater good of mankind and future generations.