Tuesday, October 22, 2002

Forgive me, Nietzsche, for I have shopped retail...

Went to Barnes and Noble. It seems like a sinful confession, because BN is the big-name retail book chain. Movies like You've Got Mail and High Fidelity that demonize the Big Chain Superstore only fuel this subterrainian shame culture. Yes, boys and girls, sometimes you have to go to the "sellout" store. Deal with it. Too many people spend all their time being high-minded, bashing the corporate machine. Too many intellectuals, sipping their (Starbucks?) coffee, smoking their (Camel?) cigarettes and complaining how the Machine has made their lives miserable. Then they go to work at the mall.

I understand some things. Even if I could, I wouldn't shop at Abercrombie or Gap or American Eagle. I wouldn't wear Tommy or Ralph or anything like that. I don't drive a sportscar or foreign import. I don't listen to pop music. (American pop music, anyway...) I try to avoid the stigma of popular culture and all its "mindless drones". I've felt this way all through high school and college. I was working my weary way into the intellectual set, and being embraced by the underappreciated intelligencia requires a renunciation of mass-market consumer culture. God, they didn't even like buying new clothes. It was a full-scale rejection of the "Me" 80's. Material possessions, BAD. Starving, tattered, stubble-faced artist-philosophers, GOOD.

It's so ridiculous. Because we live in the world. You have to interact with the rest of humanity, however distasteful it may seem. And sometimes you can't find the book you need at the "acceptable" used bookstores. So you suck it up, and stroll into BN. Grow up, kids, you are not above the world. The allegedly "enlightened" should let their so-called light shine. Otherwise, you are no better than the rest.

What was I talking about? I don't know, I'm too pissed off. Nevermind.

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