Monday, November 24, 2008
Saturday, November 22, 2008
It's also interesting to note who exactly gets the moniker 'white trash ho.' It's not enough, in this song, to call your man's girlfriend a ho. You have to add 'white-trash' as an adjective, making the woman even lower than low, like effluents or road pizza or an inhabitant of either wing (right or left). Yet she has no term of equal approbation for the cheater. I find that curious. Does she, uh, want to keep him? Is it a case of till death do we part, and I've got my gun to hasten the process, asshole? I just don't know.
Makes cheating seem all happy and stuff. And Naomi Judd at the end. Just too precious.
Let's find out.Which do you prefer, people? Where on the scale of acceptable reduction and name-calling do you find redneck and white trash and flatlander [where I grew up, that was the name; or 'people from Jersey' (not to put too fine a point on that lovely state which, according to many people from PA, ought to be cut off with NY to float out into the Atlantic)?] Are there other, even more reductive terms you can find to refer to white people of a certain social, income or residential status? We sure know all the ones for people of different race.
It's still OK to call people white trash in popular culture. Listen for it some time; it may surprise you how often it comes up.
I'm editing a new story right now for the site. I'd hope to get it up this week, but more likely Tuesday or later.
Sunday, November 16, 2008
HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – As a portly woman plodded ahead of him on the sidewalk, the obese mayor of America's fattest and unhealthiest city explained why health is not a big local issue.
"It doesn't come up," said David Felinton, 5-foot-9 and 233 pounds, as he walked toward City Hall one recent morning. "We've got a lot of economic challenges here in Huntington. That's usually the focus."
Huntington's economy has withered, its poverty rate is worse than the national average, and vagrants haunt a downtown riverfront park. But this city's financial woes are not nearly as bad as its health.
Nearly half the adults in Huntington's five-county metropolitan area are obese—an astounding percentage, far bigger than the national average in a country with a well-known weight problem.
Apparently they have two hundred pizza joints in Huntington, WV. Not bad.
I admit to gawping and slavering at the McDonald's quarter-pounder perhaps more than I ought to, even after Morgan Spurlock showed us all that Mickey D's food is a chemical-meat-potato-chicken neck nukular disaster. Who could forget the scene with those french fries, under a glass cover for a month or so, that didn't change shape or grow mold? And I willingly put that shit into my gut. If it don't decompose, why the hell am I swallowing it? I need to answer that for myself soon, but you'll have to excuse me, my cheeseburger and fries are reheating.
Too, I have heard my friend Emily lecture to anyone who will listen about the high fructose corn syrup in sodas and many foods, expecially the processed foods that— you guessed it—poor people buy. I'm not poor, if I ever really was— it's debatable— but I sure enough eat like I'm poor most days. Ease of cooking and speed of consumption rule the day.
This is the part where I say I hope my kids are smarter than I am.
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
PARSONSFIELD, Me. — The novelist Carolyn Chute doesn’t have a working phone, a fax or a computer. She writes on a washtub-size electric typewriter that was probably state of the art in the ’70s. Ms. Chute (pronounced CHOOT) and her husband, Michael, live in a small compound at the end of an unpaved road in this rural Maine village near the New Hampshire border. There are stacks of old tires in the yard, a rusted bedstead, a pen full of Scottish terriers and an assortment of well-used vehicles. A bumper sticker on Mr. Chute’s pickup reads, “School Takes 13 Years Because That’s How Long It Takes to Break a Child’s Spirit.”I admire the lifestyle. I don't know if I could do it myself, though. It's one thing to read about it, another entirely to do: what would I do without the computer?
Finding new content and finding time to put it up or write something halfway clever has been difficult lately, as you all have no doubt noticed. I'm hoping to be back on the stick sometime soon.