Commentary

Everytime I reflect on my life I google Swift Kanye and suddenly become succesful intelectual giant.

 

So there it is. Randomly misspelled but probably the truest, most profound thing I’ve read in a while… In the comments section… On an article about Taylor Swift and Kanye West… Which I was reading because… well, I don’t really have a good reason. I was bored and possibly a bit depressed. I deliberately clicked on a story about the vapid Mr. West so I deserve to be publicly flogged.

In a world where ex-Marines are shooting cops, and violent losers are running over children to make some kind of psychotic point, there actually are people who think that the Swift/West/Kardasian thing matters. Swift, West and Kardasian apparently do, at least. And perhaps (for the rest of us non-narcissists), it is simply that the vacuous in-fighting of awful, shallow husks provides a moment of slightly sadistic entertainment to distract us from the real struggles of our lives. So much Reality TV works on this very principle. We can chortle and feel superior, even while we ourselves are voluntarily feeding our eyeballs to the maw of depraved indifference.

Just stop. No one will write stories about them if you stop clicking on those stories. And they will all just fade back into the obscurity from whence they came.

… Although that technique hasn’t yet worked for stories about golf.

For some bizarre reason, it has reminded me of something I once learned about Ancient Greek and Roman art. As their civilisations progressed, the proportions of their statues changed. They went from fairly human-shaped in the early centuries to become over-muscled caricatures of people. Well before the advent of steroids, there was simply no way for human beings to ever look like the torsos they sculpted. But it all sprang from a celebration of masculinity, and then an elevation of all things masculine, until it eventually reached a strange, unrealistic, unhuman, hyper-masculinity.

And I’m wondering if we’re doing the same with our own celebrity culture. We are worshiping, and gradually magnifying, the least human qualities of already abnormal people.

Art History. See? Sometimes it’s useful.

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