As the class comes to an end,

I can’t believe this is the final post. This class just flew by and I’m slightly sad for it to be over. I didn’t think I would really like the ‘blog’ style format of this class, but it turns out that I really like it. I wish more online classes used this format versus only using Moodle. We all know that Moodle can be a slight pain in the ass sometimes. But anyway, on to the final post!

I had a hard time choosing a text for this post. I didn’t know if I wanted to pick a TV show, a movie, a music video, or a commercial.  As y’all have probably figured out, I like to talk. Or in this case write… [Good thing I am studying communication!] I’m not a very decisive person, so when it comes to picking topics [or restaurants, shoes, things to do, etc] it takes me a while. I spent far too long trying to pick a topic for this post.

When I finally decided on doing a movie, it was a whole new challenge to pick what movie. [I hope I am not the only one who goes through this struggle!] There are so many movies that I felt like I could write a blog post about.  I had two ideas that I was trying to narrow it down from [This took like two days…I wish I was kidding]. I couldn’t decide between the films: Grease (1978) or Clueless (1995). I love both movies and I thought they both would make a good post, so I flipped a coin. Clueless won. [I wish I would have thought of the coin idea earlier…haha]

So on to the actual post now:

Clueless is one of my all time favorite movies. And there are so many things I want to talk about when it comes to this movie. There are just so many things to look at. Because I am not trying to write a book here I decided to only talk about two things. I’m going to take a look at the pop language that is used in the movie and I am going to look at other popular media texts that have directly referenced the movie.

Just in case y’all haven’t seen the movie or need a refresher, I first thought I would start with a brief summary of the film. 

The romantic comedy Clueless came out in 1995 and was written and directed by Amy
Heckerling.  The film is about a girl named Cher (Alicia Silverstone), who is a high school student at Beverly Hills High who must survive the ups and downs of adolescent life. At first Cher’s external demeanor seems superficial and somewhat ‘clueless’ but as the movie progresses the audience sees her wit, charm, and intelligence. Cher is more than your stereotypical “rich white girl who is spoiled by her daddy”. In the end the audience sees Cher is a normal girl who is just trying to live life with all the curve balls that fly at her. She has to deal with relationships, friends, family, school, and all the other ‘normal’ teenage stuff that we all went through.
  

If you have not seen this movie in a while, I suggest re-watching it. It was a lot of fun re-watching this. It had been a while since I had watched it.

The first thing I want to talk about is pop language. I chose to focus on pop language partly because I have my boyfriends friend from France in town and he is staying at my house. He has lived in America for a year but that was many years ago and his English is not as good as it was. We had this whole conversation about language and slang, and that inspired me to talk about pop language in this post. 

Slag changes from generation to generation. Dictionary.com defines the word ‘slang ‘ as “more metaphorical, playful, elliptical, vivid, and ephemeral than ordinary language.” Clueless is a great representation of what pop language or slang was in the 90’s.  For this post I read an article titled ““We’ve Got to Work on Your Accent and Vocabulary”: Characterization through Verbal Style in Clueless” by Jennifer O’Meara that was published by the Cinema Journal in Spring 2014. I found this article through the HSU library databases and without being logged into your HSU account, you might not be able to view the article.

In the article O’Meara mentions that “Upon Clueless’s release, praise was frequently leveled at its use of language.” The number of different ‘slang terms that are in this movie are slightly ridiculous. Later in the post I have included a list of some of the terms used in the movie with the meanings. The article mentioned how in the movie critic reviews that were released shortly after the film’s debut all mention the use of the language in movie. O’Meara said that writer/director Heckerling was very skillful with the incorporation of irony and slang in the film.

So I think now is a good time to put in that list of terms I was talking about earlier. Here are some of the slang terms in the movie Clueless:
 Audi: I’m Leaving
 As-if: Yeah right
 “Like”: This word is used as a filler, and ‘like’ said ‘like’ after every other word ‘like’ yeah.
 Digits: Cell phone number
 Jeeping: Having sex in a car
 Lodie: Loaded
 Surf the crimson wave: Girl on her period
 Bugging: Freaking out
 Baldwin: Hot male
 Betty: Beautiful Female or Babe
 Cake Boy: Gay Man
 Hagsville: Ugly
 Phat: Awesome
 Wiggin: Freak out

This is just a short list of the slang terms that are used in this movie. It was very hard to catch them all during just one watch through. I have had the movie on repeat as I am writing this though, and I keep catching more. There are just so many different slang terms, some I didn’t know the meaning of and had to look up.


Today in 2016 our culture has definitely adapted some of these terms into everyday talking although most of these terms are completely outdated. The overuse of the word “like” is still common today. I have heard the term Digits be used recently as well. But as far as all the others mentioned, not so much. Slang is always changing, and it seems like every decade has its own slang attached to it. For example, people in the 90’s weren’t using the term ‘fleek’ like it is being used today. [ie: “My eyebrows are on fleek today”]

The O’Meara article goes on to further explain how the language is used throughout the movie, particularly talking about the main character Chair. There were some words that are extremely repetitive in Chairs vocabulary, ‘like’, ‘way’ and ‘totally’. I thought O’Meara said it right when she said, “Totally in general goes where completely would, with characters totally “revived,” “paused,” or “choked.” O’Meara continued to say that the word ‘way’ was used where someone would say ‘really’ today, “Cher has “a way normal life,” insults are “way harsh,” and quotes can be “way famous.” This article really goes in-depth on how Cher’s language is used through out the film and it really brought a new light to the movie. If you like the movie, I suggest you read the article. I found it very interesting.

The other thing I wanted to talk about is the intertextuality that is involved with the movie Clueless. First what is ‘intertextuality’? Dictionary.com defines it as “the interrelationship between texts, especially works of literature; the way that similar or related texts influence, reflect, or differ from each other.” So instead of blabbing my explanation first and then showing you the videos after, I want to switch it around.

So everyone, watch the trailer to the movie. Just do it, even if you have seen the movie before. Just trust me here.

Now, watch Iggy Azalea’s music video for “Fancy”. If you think that song is annoying like I do, watch it on mute, it doesn’t really matter that much.

See the relation? The Azalea music video is a mini version of the movie itself. By watching the music video after seeing the movie, it will make you think of the Clueless movie. There are many similarities between the two. Each different scene in the music video is is the exact same setting with fashion choices that were made in the clueless film. There is no way to argue that Azalya wasn’t referencing Clueless with this video.

So I have another question for you all. Is there any other pop culture text that has some intertextuality with Clueless? Think about it for a second. Where have you seen the schoolgirl dancing down the school hallway lined with lockers?

How about Britney Spears’s music video for “Hit Me Baby One More Time”?

Can you think of anything else that relates to this? There could defiantly be something that I am missing.

Intertextuality is everywhere in pop culture, and I could list many other examples involving other texts. It is also one of my favorite things about pop culture is how in all interconnects somehow some way.

I love how Clueless is a great representation of what Beverly Hills was like in the early to mid 90’s. I think the pop language and intertextuality in this movie are some things we don’t really think about when we first watch the film. But next time you watch this movie, I hope you see it with a different lens.

Thank you all for reading my posts through out this class. I really appreciate all the nice things everyone has said. It has truly made this blogging thing more enjoyable. Thank you for a great summer class, and I hope everyone has a good rest of summer. Let life bring everyone success and happiness. 🙂

Have a good day everyone, this was fun!

-Kristine

 

Works cited:

O’Meara, J. ““We’ve Got to Work on Your Accent and Vocabulary”: Characterization through Verbal Style in Clueless.” Cinema Journal 53.3 (2014): 138-145. Project MUSE. Web. 15 Jul. 2016. <https://muse.jhu.edu/&gt;.

 

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FOOD. FOOD. FOOOOOD.

Okay, so I’m going to be completely honest here and come right out and say that I in no way consider myself an artist. I had a very hard time trying to decide what to write about. Normally I try and get my Tuesday blog post done by Sunday night, but here it is Tuesday night and I am writing this. I spent a lot of time thinking about what to write about. My boyfriend is a fiddle player, I thought I could do it on him or another member of the band. But it would not be the first time that I have used his music for a project of mine. [I have taken a lot of classes like this one and have had very similar assignments.] My good friend and neighbor is into slam poetry and I thought I could maybe write about him. The other day when I was talking to my friend Corey [the poetry friend] about this assignment, he gave me a great idea! Most of his ideas can be a little out there, but this one actually was a good one. He said I could write about my cooking. [*insert light bulb lighting up over my head here]

I don’t know why I hadn’t thought of that. I love to cook. It has been my longest hobby. I first developed a love for cooking when I was about eight years old. I started to watch the Food Network all the time and it fascinated me. I wanted to be just like the chefs on the Food Network. Particularly, Giada De Laurentiis because she was the Italian cook and even at a young age Italian food was my favorite. Actually while typing this, my boyfriend and I are watching “Iron Chef” on Netflix. When I was little, I remember staying up late just so I could watch this show.

The first thing I cooked [with my Daddy’s help] was shrimp scampi. I found the recipe off foodnetwork.com back in the day and it was the first thing I made. My mom still tells the story of her eight year old daughter asking for “a ½ cup of dry white wine”. Over the years I have adapted the recipe to make it my own, but it is still based off the same Tyler Florence recipe that I used almost 15 years ago.

Growing up, I did a lot of cooking. I would cook one-three meals a week for my family, for fun. I would bake in my free time. [I like to cook and bake.] I would go through phases of trying to perfect certain recipes. Neither of my parents are really into cooking. I mean we almost always had home cooked meals, but they were normally very simple and were the same recipes that were rotated.

In high school, I got to take a culinary class as one of my electives. And that is the only ‘formal’ training that I have had. From that culinary class, I created a portfolio of all the recipes that I had made that semester. [I also added some of the ones I had printed out from year before too.] I used that portfolio as a component of my high school “senior exit portfolio” [aka: some bs thing that like only MY school made us do]. But I am really happy I still have it; I still refer back to it from time to time. It is definitely a useful tool to have. Mostly I am self taught cook. I have learned through trial and error, but over the years I have gotten quite good.

Before I moved out of my parents house my dad always said things like, “your friends are going to love you [at college]” and “I’m going to miss your cooking when you move out”. When I did move out of my parents house into the dorms, it was really important to me that I have a kitchen. Home cooked food is a comfort of mine [and probably almost everyone else in the world] and I could not picture myself living without a kitchen. Luckily I got to live in a dorm with a kitchen, and I got to cook whenever I wanted. [Or whenever my roommates cleaned their dishes; we have all been there.]

My boyfriend loves that I love to cook, and takes full advantage of it. We have a deal: I cook, he does the dishes. That makes cooking even more enjoyable for me.

I’m not the type of person that will use a sauce that comes out of a jar. I’m also not the type of person that will eat roasted sausages and cereal while camping. Even while out in the wilderness, I make the same things that I would make in my kitchen at home [we bring a propane stove].

Cooking has always been a way that I express myself. Food makes most people happy, and I like to make others happy. And sharing my cooking with people is almost like sharing a part of myself. Most the time I cook far too much food so I can give some away. Everything I make, I try to put my own spin on.  

I love how cooking [and food] can bring people together. It is something I like to with my friends or by myself. Even though it is so simple, a home cooked meal really brings people happiness. When my boyfriend and I house-sit for his parents, the day that they come home I make sure to bake something that will make the house smell good when they get home. Who doesn’t like to come home to a house smelling like brownies? The smell of fresh baked goods automatically puts people in a good mood.

Food is one of the only thing that appeals to three out of the five senses. We first see and smell our food. The saying that “we eat with our eyes first” is totally true. We also eat with our noses before we actually eat the food. I really like that. I always try to make sure that the food I cook not only tastes good, but that it looks and smells good too.

Food allows me to use my ‘creative side’. [If you may call it that.] I never completely follow a recipe. I always try and add my own touch, even when it comes to baking. [It much harder to play around with baked goods, but over the years I have figured it out.] That’s the ‘fun’ part of it. I love making the food look ‘pretty’ on the plate, even though it doesn’t really matter that much. But when I spend a lot of time cooking something, when I serve it I want it to look nice.

I also love that there is a reward with cooking. YOU GET TO EAT THE FOOD!!! Obviously that is one of the best parts. The other best part is making other people happy with my food. Just like painters who put their work in galleries or musicians with their music, they want other people to enjoy and be inspired by their art. That is how I feel when I hand a plate of food to someone. It is my way of sharing my art.

For this post, I wanted to add pictures of some of the things I have made. But there is only one problem with that, I don’t take pictures of my food. I would rather eat and enjoy my food right away than try to make it look ‘picture perfect’ and post it to Instagram with the hashtag ‘#foodporn’. Also I haven’t cooked anything in the past few days. I have been too busy/lazy to do any cooking this week. So sadly, I have no pictures to share. [I went through my whole phone gallery!] At the end of the post I have included some of my favorite recipes, you all should give them a try. I promise they are good. 

Some of my favorite things to make are: soups [I make a great chicken barley soup], pasta sauces [you name it, I’ve made it], and green chili pork. Just to name a few.

So now that you all are probably hungry, I’m going to end this post. I now want to go eat something myself.

Here are a few recipes that I suggest you all try, they are some of my old time favorites:

The shrimp scampi recipe I was talking about: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/tyler-florence/shrimp-scampi-with-linguini-recipe.html

Sun-dried tomato pasta sauce:

1 Tbsp olive oil

12 oz diced chicken

8 oz cream sherry

3 oz roasted garlic

60 pieces julienned sun-dried tomatoes

10 oz broccoli florets

12 oz large shell pasta, dry

20 oz chicken stock

3 Tbsp butter

Pecorino Romano cheese to taste

Salt & pepper to taste

Add oil to hot pan. Saute diced chicken until brown. Remove to a plate. Quickly add the garlic, tomatoes and sherry and reduce by half.

Add chicken stock and reduce until thickened. (Note: if not thickening, add a bit of corn starch mixed with water)

Meanwhile, cook pasta until al dente. Add broccoli in the last few minutes of cook time. Put pasta and broccoli into sauce mixture. Return the chicken to the pan. Add butter, cheese and salt and pepper to taste.

 

Beer bread: http://www.food.com/recipe/beer-bread-73440

** tip, add 1/2 cup butter inside the batter and a 1/4 on top of the bread. Serve with honey and butter.  Mix up the beer you use and it will change the flavor of the bread. You can also mess with how much sugar/salt you use depending on how you want it to taste.

Maple Oat scones: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/maple-oatmeal-scones-recipe.html

** tip: add two teaspoons of espresso to the glaze, it will make this recipe so much better!

 

Have a good day everyone!

-Kristine

Video Games

Anyone who knows me well, knows that video games are not my favorite thing in the world. Some might also say that to say that “they are not my favorite” might be putting it very lightly.  My boyfriend might say ‘hate’ would  be a better word to describe how I feel about video games. This was a section that I was not looking forward to covering in this class.

Now, never in my life would I have thought that part of my homework would be playing games. Back in the day I used to play “Meal or No Meal” on addictinggames.com. It is a spin off of the show “Deal or No Deal” that used to be on TV. [What even happened to that show anyway?] So when I went back on to addictinggames.com for the first time in years I went looking for that game, and I found it! Slightly shocked that it was still there, I ended up playing it for about 25 minutes or so. It brought back more nostalgia more than anything. To be honest, I didn’t enjoy it that much. The game was the exact same as it was years ago. At the beginning of this game you pick a case and then you pick off each of the other cases one by one. Inside each case is a meal valuing from .01$ to 1,00,000$. Every so often you get an offer from the Chef to ‘settle’  depending on what cases you knocked off. I never took any of the offers and always kept what was in my case. The first time I got the cigarette buts that were valued at 1 cent. The second time I got juicy peaches valued at 200,000$. So I did way better the second time.

I do play some games on my phone from time to time. I seem to go through phases of playing phone games and not. The games seem to rotate, but most of them are very simple games like dots and bejeweled. Currently one of my favorite games [it has been my favorite for like four years] is “two dots”, I am on level 367 or something like that. It is one of those games that only gives you a certain number of lives and when you run out you have to wait 20 minutes to get another, unless you pay money for more lives. Talk about annoying [but I know that is how free games make money]. Two dots is very far away from the interactive shooting video games that the two articles were talking about this week.

I understand people’s appeal to play these interactive shooting games. They are fast-paced and allow for people to be immersed in a virtual world. They involve critical thinking, collaboration [well the multiplayer ones], and strategic planning. What I am trying to say is that videogames have some good things about them too. I know many people that love these violent video games and they all really enjoy playing them. I just try and avoid them.

 

When it came to the articles this week, I thought they both brought up a couple good points. There were also things I disagreed with in both articles. I also learned a few new things about a topic I’m not a huge fan of.

The article from the American Psychological Association said that the “role of video games is a double-edged sword. I’m not surprised that Craig Anderson discusses how violent behavior can be a result of these video games. This is not the first time I have heard this. But I don’t think that it makes everyone more aggressive. But with the extremely realistic violent nature of these games, of course some people will become more aggressive in their daily lives.

I enjoyed that Anderson broke up the myths with the facts. I have heard a lot of the myths before but had not heard many of the facts. I definitely learned something new. One of the things I learned was when Anderson said, “experimental studies with college students have consistently found increased aggression after exposure to clearly unrealistic and fantasy violent video games. Indeed, at least one recent study found significant increases in aggression by college students after playing E-rated (suitable for everyone) violent video games.”  So obviously there are some good outcomes to video games, this being one of them.

In the Slate article “Death From Above” said that “Modern warfare is becoming more like a video game, most obviously by increasing the distance between soldiers and their targets. But at the same time, warfare video games are becoming more realistic—and not just in the blood-and-guts way.” This is terrifying and also slightly cool. But far more terrifying. It is crazy [and amazing] on how far video games have come throughout the years. Pacman and Mario Kart are nothing compared to the visual realities that are games today.

What I found the most interesting is in the “Death from Above” article is that videogames can expose players to cultural situations and helps veterans cope with post-traumatic stress disorder. I think that is really cool that this kind of technology can be used to help soldiers.

So overall:

Do I think this lesson is going to change my overall opinion on videogames? No. But I do feel like I have learned new things about video games? Yes.

 

That’s all for this week!

-Kristine

 

Parody News

 

The answer to the question of whether parody news is “news” or “entertainment”, I think it’s both. It’s like having your cake and eating it too. If people want to watch this type of news they should. The beauty of these ‘parody news shows’ is that it causes people to actually think a little bit. Yes, they are funny. But at the same time they are often talking about very current and sometimes very important things.‘Regular’ news just gives the basis of what is going on, but these parody news shows really dig into the controversial topics and break down the in’s and out’s of the issue. Parody news often has a really strong political bias towards one side or the other but sometimes that can be a good thing. They are open about their bias instead of some other news outlets that try and stay ‘neutral’. I appreciate the honesty.

I appreciate that satirical aspects of different forms of news parody as well as the ability to bring some lightheartedness to difficult situations. Sometimes humor is the best tool to talk about serious, important or confusing situations. We do it in our day to day lives; TV shows and movies do it. Why can’t some news outlets?

With that being said, I don’t watch a lot of these shows in my free time. But that doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy them, I would rather just be doing something else. Also every morning and night [also sometimes throughout the day] I am constantly reading other news articles through other outlets.  My mom watches some of these shows and she loves them. I had a history teacher in high school that would pay episodes of Jon Stewart all the time instead of a traditional lecture [that was pretty cool]. When they are on, I will watch them. But I don’t seek them out. [I do like occasionally reading The Onion when I need a break from ‘regular’ news or want to read something for entertainment].

I think it’s important that people know that shows like John Oliver, Stephen Colbert, and Jon Stewart, and also websites like the Onion are parody news. That most of them are a little bit of fact mixed in with a whole lot of opinion. Not all people realize this. I have heard people more than once talking about The Onions articles like they were real, and obviously they are not that informed. As long as people realize that they are parody, I think this type of news is great to get people that don’t like ‘real’ news to get a little bit of a jist of what’s going on. It also will cause them to think a little. And if there is no thinking and only laughing, is that really that bad? In the article about The Onion, the author said “however, while content might push the boundaries on what is commonly considered appropriate, It’s this type of humor that accounts for the organization’s popularity.” I think this statement sums parody news up very well. It might not be appropriate, but it sure is popular.

I really enjoyed watching and reading the materials this week! My second favorite was the John Oliver segment. I loved the end of the Oliver skit so much that I had to show it to my boyfriend who also thought it was as funny as I did. First Oliver said, “Don’t vote for the Brexit on Thursday” and then que cute little choir boy who starts singing “Fuck you European union, tally-ho you fucking pricks” it was not at all what I was expecting to hear but boy did I think it was clever and very funny. The last line in the song is,“We’d all be batshit crazy if we vote for leaving it” which sums up the whole Oliver skit very well. Here is a link to just the song, if you missed it or want to see it again. I’m not going to lie, I watched it like five more times.

Besides the song at the end, I thought Oliver brought up some really good points throughout the whole segment. During the beginning he describes the term “Brexit” that has been floating around the news world. And yes there was a joke and a swear word or two thrown in there, but he was still explain what’s is going on. Britain potentially [well actually–but Oliver didn’t know this yet] will be leaving the EU is an important and also very controversial issue. If you look past the sex jokes, Oliver brought some truth to the situation.

My favorite part of this week’s materials were the Colbert videos with the trial video as well. First I like the whole idea for this series of “fallback positions” I ended up watching a few more of the videos. I though the astronaut one was quite funny, I suggest it is y’all liked this one. I would be lying if I said that most Americans think of astronauts and migrant workers to be on the same level of coolness.  But Colbert still ‘tried’ to do both of them.

During the trial when Colbert said, “We [American’s] are far too dependent on immigrant labor to pick fruits and vegetables. The obvious answer it to stop eating fruits and vegetables. Looking at recent obesity statistics many Americans have started.”  I think Colbert brings up a good point here. American’s don’t seem to want these jobs, and if ‘we’ want only American workers than we will just have to stop eating fruits and veggies, problem solved! Obviously it is ridiculous and not going to happen, but it doesn’t mean that it’s not a good point. Americans don’t realize that without migrant workers, their lives would not be the same. 

Colbert said, “migrant workers that come and do our work, but don’t have any rights as a result, and yet we still invite them to come here and at the same time ask them to leave.” Even though he was ‘in character’ when he said this, when you look at the physical words types out and it totally makes sense, TV personality or not.

I thought watching Colbert testify in the trial was going to be a joke and that it would be completely ineffective. After I watched it, I was shocked on how Colbert’s TV personality was bringing a sense of ‘realness’ to the courtroom. At the end of the questions Colbert broke his character and showed a ‘real’ side to him. He showed that he cared because farm workers are voiceless and powerless and they need an advocate. In this country, migrant workers have no rights and often work in terrible working conditions. Colbert used his celebrity status to bring attention to a career that most Americans know nothing about but rely on every day.

I definitely think parody news has its place in our world and that it is more than just entertainment. It might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but that’s why there are so many flavors out there.

That’s all for now!

-Kristine

 

Hungry for Change

I like documentaries. I might be weird, but I find most [not all] of them very interesting. Looking at that list of top selling documentaries, I have only seen about a third of them. So it looks like I have some more watching to do. [The things a class like this will make me do…all on my own will I might add.] Although I have heard of the movie in great detail, I have never seen the “Supersize Me” movie because I have honestly been scared to… I know that sounds silly, but I don’t do well with fast food in the first place. And I have never been interested to see what it really does to people. It is one thing that I do not need to know. And anyways, I think I have heard enough about the film that I don’t actually have to watch it. I also had never watched “Harvest of Shame” until this week. It was an okay documentary, and I found some things interesting but it was not my favorite. But for this blog post, I wanted to choose something different than other people did.

So, for my bog post this week I chose to watch the movie “Hungry For Change”. I watched this particular documentary because I wanted to stick with the food theme. I’m fascinated with how food documentary’s [its not just food documentary’s] persuade people to make lifestyle changes. While I was watching this film I took notes on the many different ways that the film used to persuade their audience. After 90 minutes of watching, I was convinced want to change my lifestyle too. It takes a lot of work from the creators to put all of this together.

“Hungry For Change” is a film by James Colquhoun and Laurentine ten Bosch about the effect that diets has on Americans. The movie argues that food kills more people than drugs and alcohol do every year. Sugar and fat are the new drugs of America.  This movie uses many persuasive techniques to back up their main point: that diets don’t work—change does. Many times in the movie, multiple people say “We are not eating food anymore; we are eating food like product”. Today we live in a world full of calories, diet this and low fat that, all which are harming are bodies more than the original foods themselves.

The movie starts out by explaining that we, as humans, it is our primal nature to need fats and sugars. During hunter gather times humans needed fats and sugars to survive. They then go on to explain that we do not live that way anymore, most of us have indoor lifestyles and access to all of these junk food that are chemically altered to look and smell better to attract consumers. This puts the blame of ‘fatness’ or ‘obesity’ on human nature and not on the individual. Then the film goes on to explain how diets don’t work. And to see the change, you can’t just temporary change and ‘go on a diet’, there has to be an actual lifestyle change.

Throughout the whole documentary there are statistics that help prove their point and instead of just speaking them, they have them typed on the screen, so the viewer’s not only hearing the fact, they are reading it to. Examples of these jaw dropping facts are: today in the United States “one third of all women and one quarter of all men are on a diet” (Colorado State University) and “more than 60 billion dollars are spent each year on diet and weight loss products.” (Marketdata report) These facts increase the films credibility and therefore more persuasive.

Another way the producers make this movie more persuasive is by bringing in many specialists and doctors that supporting these facts. There is not just one boring know-it-all narrator; there are many narrators that appear throughout the film that make the argument look more thought out. There are also personal stories form everyday people making the film more relatable. The personal stories and professional facts that works together to sway people to their argument.

The producers also create a miniature love story throughout the documentary to make the movie more ‘relatable’ to their viewers. The story is about a girl who has weight issues and she has a crush on a coworker. The story continues throughout the movie ending with her feeling confident with her body because she has ‘made the change’ and now this little crush turned out not to be worth it.  The film producers added this story into the movie to reach out to the viewers by adding the personal effects, or ‘pathos’ to the film and making the movie more persuasive.

Another persuasive element this movie uses is the use fear appeals to scare the viewers into believing them. They are relating food to drug addiction. Multiple times they bring up how eating is like nicotine, alcohol and even cocaine and heroin to our bodies. And that food kills more Americans a year than drugs or alcohol does. They also scare their audience away from diets. They produce the statistic: “up to two-thirds of those on a diet regain more weight than when they started” (UCLA). They also say “Diets are temporary; they have failure built right into them”, they only work for a short time. And that people add more weight after the diet, because their body is craving what it thinks it was missing. They use saying like “it’s not just what you’re eating, it’s what eating you” and “People are overfed, but also starving to death” to scare their audience viewers. The do this in hope that people will be ‘scared in to changing’.

I found this movie super persuasive and it makes me want to change my lifestyle! I learned many new things about the food I eat, some that scared me. The film explained the effects to our bodies that MSG and free glutamates have, and how many different names they [they being food companies] can call these chemicals. I also learned that there is often not a third party involved in testing food. The food studies are funded by the food manufactures, so they can alter their food labels to make it sound better.

When they said things like “Sugar is the cocaine of the food world”, those terms scared me when they related to thing that I have always known as ‘bad’. And that these chemicals are chemically altering our brains. I also really liked their solutions at the end. The said to start adding in the good stuff and soon your body will start craving that over the bad stuff. One solution the film gave was to start juicing, because it is an easy way to eat healthy foods. When the film was talking about how stress relates to weight gain I got scared. So to change one’s lifestyle one must also reduce stress. One suggestion for this was to sleep, a lot. And it might just be me, but that sound like a great idea.

Now I want to go buy a juicer and sleep more; just like the film said. Haha

The movie stressed at the end to love yourself and that self-love is a good and will lead to love of other people. One of the doctors said in the movie to repeat this quote by Rudyard Kipling twice a day; “I am by nature dealer in words, and words are the most powerful drug known to humanity.” This will help to give individuals that self-love they need to be healthy. To make the change one has to learn the difference between “I can’t have it” and “I can have it but don’t want it”. The last thing the movie left with his audience was to always think about these three questions: Where does my food come from? What went into the food? What is my intention with the food? And this will lead to change for the better. Overall this movie was very persuasive and very educational. I learned a lot and want to change my lifestyle.

So now relating this documentary to the reading from this week, asking myself is this film honest, independent, or productive?  I think this particular film it is both honest and productive. As the reading pointed out, it takes a lot of time to put together an hour and a half long film. These films are not made unless someone thinks that there is something that others need to know, so they make a movie about it. The producers and people involved in the film honestly believed what they were saying and they thought others should know. And if my analysis on how persuasive the movie wasn’t enough to answer this question, I would defiantly say that this movie was productive. I think the producers reached their goal to inform people about how to live a healthy lifestyle. And they did it in a way that can reach many different types of people. When it comes to the film being independent, I think the answer is trickier. It did not come from one of the ‘big daddy’ production companies; it didn’t come from a completely independent source. I would say this movie is independent, but that could also be argued. This was not a huge budget film, and although it had some notably directors I would still consider it an independent film.

Over all I think this is a really good film and I would suggest it if you like watching this kind of stuff. I really learned a lot.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Let’s talk RACE: Orange is the New Black

“Orange is the New Black” is one of those TV shows that I have binged watched [along with countless others]. I watch more TV on Netflix and Hulu than I would like to admit. The amount of hours I have spent my life watching a screen is quite sad. OITNB is one of those shows that has been ‘lost’ in the flood of shows I have watched. That doesn’t mean that I didn’t like it, but it is not one of my top ‘stand out shows’. But is still a show that I try and keep up on.

With season four coming out this week, I was ready to start watching it again. When I saw it was one of the options for our post this week, I was thrilled! But it also made me want to rewatch the whole show…(it has also been a while since I have seen it last, and I still haven’t watched season four). If I had the time, I totally would have done it too.

After rewatching some episodes and reading the article “If Orange Is the New Black, I Must Be Color Blind: Comic Framings of Post-Racism in the Prison-Industrial Complex” by Suzanne Enck and Megan Morrissey and also discussing the show with Kirby Moss last semester, my opinion slightly changed on the show. [ Sidenote- If you have not had Kirby as a professor; take one of his classes!!! He is by far one of the best professors I have ever had.]

Last year, I took two Journalism classes from Kirby. And in both classes, we talked about “Orange is the New Black”. It is no secret that Kirby is not a fan of the show. In fact, he refuses to watch it because of the way it depicts race. I really respect Kirby and his opinion. So when he says he doesn’t like something I like, it makes me try to take another look. I don’t always agree with him, but when it comes to this show I do.  Now, I don’t refuse to watch the show because I still like it. But I look at it in a new way and take most things with a grain of salt. But for many of us, this Netflix show has been the closest we have been to the Woman’s Prison system so it’s hard to not think that some of the things that happen in the show actually happen in real life. And the fact the show is modeled after a true story, it doesn’t help.

The show definitely plays off the different race and class backgrounds and the stereotypes surrounding them. There are many points in the show where it is implied that in prison people of the same race stick together and each race has their own spot/job/role and that people from other races are not welcome.

Some of the cafeteria scenes in OITNB strangely remind me of the cafeteria scenes from High School Musical and the song (Stick to the Status Quo). In the Disney Channel movie it is your stereotypical clique scene: there is a jock table, a nerd table, the drama table, etc. Everyone has ‘their’ place or in this case table. OITNB is almost the same way, but instead of separating by hobby or grades they slit by race. There is the black table, the Hispanic table, the Asian table, etc.

Although the racial stereotypes were very apparent in the show and how the woman interacted with each other, no one said that they were in prison because of their race.  The authors of the article mention, “Colorblindness does not deny the existence of race but denies the claim that race is responsible for alleged injustices that reproduce group inequalities, privilege Whites, and negatively impacts on economic mobility, the possession of social resources, and the acquisition of political power.” The show is not saying that all blacks will go to prison, and that they are there because they’re black. Instead it is just implying that once someone gets to prison, they stick with people of their own race.

The article that I read brings up some very good points about the show. It talks about the racial divide and racism that is in the show as well as portraying Piper as the ‘Comic Fool’. Although I didn’t understand all of it, there were a lot of things that resonated with me.

One thing that was described in Enck and Morrissey’s article that I found really interesting was how they continuously described Piper as the “good [WHITE] girl” and how she was treated differently by the other inmates throughout the show because of this portrayal. The article discuss one of the prison officers, Sam, takes Piper under his wing and tells her what she needs to know to survive her sentence. I agree with Enck and Morrissey on this point, especially in the first two seasons. Because of her race, no one expects Piper to be the ‘bad/evil’ one in the group and every time she does something wrong it is a total shock to everyone. This good girl image that Piper seems to maintain during the first two seasons quickly fades away during the third season. In the third season, Piper is the head of the “Panty smuggling ring”, she also beat a girl almost to death, and to top it off she also set up another inmate for something that she had done causing that inmate to not get released the next day to see her kids. We really see Piper change from the ‘good white girl’ to the white girl who is breaking stereotypes. Or is she breaking stereotypes? By being a “badass” does that all the sudden make Piper more ‘prison worthy’ or part of the prison race? Couldn’t the behavioral switch that we see in Piper happen to any of the other women on the show, regardless of race? I think prison will change everyone. It doesn’t matter if your skin is white, black, pink or blue, no one will walk out of prison the same way the walked in.

I thought the article brought up a good point when it said,“even while the audience is positioned to empathize with Piper’s experiences of prison as being idiosyncratic and prejudicial, viewers are also invited to laugh at Piper’s foibles as a well-intentioned but utterly clueless rich white woman “on the inside.” By making it so people can laugh at the ‘rich white girls’ mistakes it makes Piper the comic fool in the show. It also brings in the ‘white’ audience that the show is targeted towards. The article also states, “Indicative of how television privileges whiteness, Piper is a familiar face that white viewers can more comfortably follow into a prison scene, and a character who Kohan identifies as crucial to communicating the narratives of racial, ethnic, and sexual minorities to a more privileged audience.”

I found these statements/argument to be really interesting, I had never viewed the shows use of Piper as a way of reaching white audiences. But it does make since, and I think this does have an effect on my the show is so popular.I guess it does give white people that ‘familiar face’ that the article was talking about.

In terms of mass media and pop culture, OITNB is sending the message that we are still living in an extremely racially divided world. And that even in prison, women of the same race cling together in order to feel safe and protected. When a new girl comes into prison, she is automatically accepted into ‘her group’ based off the color of her skin. These racial groups are so tight and built on being part of the same race, it is really crazy to think about. Because of this, I can see why Kirby doesn’t like this show. The whole show is crammed full of racial stereotypes that are the foundation of what this show is.

Lastly, the article makes a great point that this is the only prison show that is focused on females that is a comedy and not a documentary. The comedic tone allows one to become much more intimate with the characters because they are connecting with them on a humanistic level rather than the audience looking at them as a bad eggs.

I would [sadly] have to agree with the article that OITNB is only really effective if the story is told by an middle/upper class white woman. As prejudicial and terrible as that sounds, the attraction to this show is gained by Piper being so out of place and put into a very different situation. And because she doesn’t fit the ‘normal’ stereotype of women in prison it makes for good TV.

 

That’s all for tonight folks!

-Kristine

 

Enck, S. M., & Morrissey, M. E. (2015). If Orange Is the New Black , I Must Be Color Blind: Comic Framings of Post-Racism in the Prison-Industrial Complex. Critical Studies in Media Communication, 32(5), 303-317. doi:10.1080/15295036.2015.1086489

All about RADIO

ACT ONE:

I thought the podcast was much more interesting than I thought it would be. The prologue wasn’t a good start but once the first act started it was much better. The podcast showed how much of an impact the radio had on people before there were things around like TV and the Internet.  It was where everyone would go to get their news and entertainment. It was also where politicians campaigned and it where stories were told. The radio used to be a storytelling place. The radio is not much of stories anymore. This just comes to show you how much the radio has changed over the years.

I really enjoyed the story about the guys [Gordon and Mike] who read to the blind and to other people who couldn’t see. It just warmed my heart hearing about this selfless act these two men were doing. While listing to the story, I felt like I was right there with them. I really felt this whole ‘storytelling’ experience. I wish that there was more stuff like this on the radio today.  It really allows the listeners to form a ‘bond’ to these stories and characters.

Ira Glass said“radio is not an art, my friend. Non no, no, It’s a science.” This statement really makes since. It is all a process to make those shows go smoothly and Glass made that very clear.

 

ACT TWO:

The Radio. It is a love-hate relationship with me and the radio.

I grew up listening to the radio. Both my parents are big fans of the radio. There is a local station in Santa Cruz called KPIG and the LOVE it, probably too much. Personally, I’m not a fan. But I have sure listened to hours of it. Growing up in a baseball family, if we were in the car and there was a game on [especially a Giants game] it was ALWAYS on the radio. When my mom cleaned the house, she always had the radio on.

This is what my car radio looks like… 

Now let’s talk about the radio in my car. As I mentioned last week I drive an old car that only has an AM/FM radio and a tape player. But the tape player is broken, so it’s actually just the radio. So if I want to listen to music [through the car speakers] while I drive, it’s going to be the radio. Because of this I listen to the radio a fare amount. Driving in a quiet car gets old fast, especially on long trips without anyone else to talk to. Yes, I would rather be using Pandora or Spotify while I am driving, but because I don’t have that superpower I just live with it. It doesn’t bother me much, but sometimes I find myself jealous of my friends with that particular superpower.

Today, the car is basically the only place I listen to the radio. And there are definitely some downsides. The commercials suck. It always seems like every channel is on commercial break at the same time. When a annoying song [like “Work from Home”] or one I don’t like comes on, I have to change the channel. Sometimes it feels like I am picking the best of all the evils when I am choosing a station. Songs get overplayed. A lot.

But with all the bad things there are definitely some good aspects too. My boyfriend is a local musician [he is an Irish Fiddler] and he often plays on the local radio stations. Playing on the radio is a great way for small local artists to get their name out there. Also listening to the radio will keep you up to date on local events and current news issues. The radio gives you traffic updates. [It doesn’t matter too much up in Humboldt, but in any ‘real’ city it does.] Pandora doesn’t do that, so HA to people with cars that have superpowers! And probably most importantly, radio is extremely important in the case of a disaster or power outage. Growing up in a very rural place, the radio was sometimes the only way that we could receive important information. When TV, Internet and Phones are all down, there is always the good old fashioned radio. Even though it is slightly old fashioned, the radio is an effective way to stay informed and connected with your community.

When I feel like I’m getting homesick, I will listen to one of my hometown radio stations online. It is a great way to feel like I’m still part of what’s going on there. I get the local traffic updates, local advertisements, local DJ’s and it’s almost comforting to listen to. That might sound a bit weird, but it does! I might not be KPIG fan like my parents, but I also have ‘my stations’. When I go home and drive my family’s cars [with the superpowers] I will still listen to the radio because I like ‘my’ Santa Cruz stations.  

When I am not in my car and I want to listen to music, I usually use Pandora. I like how it gives me the freedom to like and dislike songs and to create my ‘perfect’ playlist. It takes a little while to get the playlist ‘perfect’, but is worth it in the end. The personalization aspect is really cool.

Even though I secretly [I love my old car] wish my car had the superpower to play music off my phone, I really don’t mind too much. [Yay for old cars!] I figured out quickly that shitty music is better than no music. My brother thinks the totally opposite way. He just sold his old car to one of my friends up here and he had replaced the radio in it about three months before he sold it. HE BOUGHT A RADIO THAT CAN’T CONNECT TO AM OR FM RADIO! It can only be connected to a phone. He said that he never uses the radio, so why have one in his car. Everyone in my family thought that it was a stupid idea, but it was his car. Now my friend who has the car now loves the sound system Kenny had but misses the actual radio.

ACT THREE:

I do not think the good old fashioned radio is going anywhere because there is nothing else quite like it. And I’m fairly confident with that guess, although I couldn’t know for sure.

We saw in the article titled, “After Hurricane Sandy, People Flock to Radio for Information” by Ben Sisario that people relied on the radio to get crucial information after the devastating disaster.  With long power outages this limited cell and internet use and the radio was the only thing left. This is just one example why the radio is necessary and why it’s not going anywhere.

 

Obviously radio stations need to make money, and if the money’s not there the station will go under. But radio stations have been adapting to the changes and they aren’t gone yet! Many of them are streaming their content online or have apps or are part of iHeartRadio, but they are adapting.  When Sean Ross in the article “Great Radio You Never Want to Hear” said, “Radio still has an authority that not every tweet has.” I think Ross made a good point here, radio still has abilities that no other form of communication has. And although streaming services are great, I don’t see them replacing radio.

 

That’s all for tonight everyone. Have a good weekend!

-Kristine 🙂

 

Not “Working from Home” today,

I really enjoyed reading Deirdre’s chapter on analyzing music this week.  I thought it was very interesting. I really liked watching the different music videos. The part about protest songs [mostly against Bush] reminded me of P!nk’s song “Dear Mr. President”. This is a great example of how a song is honest, independent and productive. I also really liked the part about the Dixie Chicks. I actually remember when they made that statement about Bus h and Texas. The next day, my mom went out and bought every one of their albums. And then that’s all she played in her car for what felt like forever. Today when I miss my mom, I listen to the Dixie Chicks. 🙂  But for this week’s assignment I decided to go a different way.

 

So instead I decided to choose a song I despise. I hear this song almost everyday when I am driving in my car. [My old car’s only form of music is the radio] With 97 of the ____ words of the song being “work” it gets really annoying. For those [like myself] who suck at math, that’s approximately one fifth of the song. And to top it off it is number _____ on Billboard’s top 100 right now. If I am in a store, I hear this song. When I am writing this at a bar in Willow Creek [It is the ONLY place in this town with wifi!] this song is actually playing… It literally is everywhere.

 

If any of y’all don’t know what song I am talking about by now the song is “Work from Home” by Fifth Harmony. Oh my god this song is so annoying! There is a terrible meaning behind the song. It is basically saying that all men are good for is bringing home the bacon and what they do in the bedroom. It is very shallow, like some other pop music today. The music video is also just as bad. All it is the five girls of the group, dancing with a group of hot construction workers on a construction site. They are climbing and tweaking on tractors, wearing short shorts with tool belts loaded with tools and shaking their booty’s. They made the construction site “sexy” if that possible.

Here are the [repetitive] lyrics:

I ain’t worried ’bout nothin’

I ain’t wearin’ na nada

I’m sittin’ pretty, impatient, but I know you gotta

Put in them hours, I’mma make it hotter

I’m sending pic after picture, I’mma get you fired

I know you’re always on the night shift

But I can’t stand these nights alone

And I don’t need no explanation

‘Cause baby, you’re the boss at home

You don’t gotta go to work, work, work, work, work, work, work

But you gotta put in work, work, work, work, work, work, work

You don’t gotta go to work, work, work, work, work, work, work

Let my body do the work, work, work, work, work, work, work, work

We can work from home, oh, oh, oh oh

We can work from home, oh, oh, oh oh

Let’s put it into motion

I’mma give you a promotion

I’ll make it feel like a vacay, turn the bed into an ocean

We don’t need nobody, I just need your body

Nothin’ but sheets in between us, ain’t no getting off early

I know you’re always on the night shift

But I can’t stand these nights alone

And I don’t need no explanation

‘Cause baby, you’re the boss at home

You don’t gotta go to work, work, work, work, work, work, work

But you gotta put in work, work, work, work, work, work, work

You don’t gotta go to work, work, work, work, work, work, work

Let my body do the work, work, work, work, work, work, work, work

We can work from home, oh, oh, oh-oh

We can work from home, oh, oh, oh-oh

Girl, go to work for me

Can you make it clap, no hands for me?

Take it to the ground, pick it up for me

Look back at it all over me

Put in work like my timesheet

She ride it like a ’63

I’mma buy her no Celine

Let her ride in a foreign with me

Oh, she the bae, I’m her boo

And she down to break the rules

Ride or die, she gon’ go

I’m won’t judge, she finesse

I pipe up, she take that

Putting overtime on your body

You don’t gotta go to work, work, work, work, work, work, work

But you gotta put in work, work, work, work, work, work, work

You don’t gotta go to work, work, work, work, work, work, work

Let my body do the work, work, work, work, work, work, work, work

We can work from home, oh, oh, oh-oh

We can work from home, oh, oh, oh-oh

Yeah, we can work from home

Yeah, we can work from home

Yeah

 

Here is the link to the video for y’all: 

 

 

Now on to the analysis.

 

So first question: Is it honest?

 

Our reading states this week that, “music and recording artists have the ability to make honest art. But honest art can be uncomfortable. Music that challenges popular opinion or that seems controversial might not attract as large an audience as the palatable drug-free love songs of a teen heartthrob. The recording artist who seeks to be honest faces resistance from a for-profit industry and marketers who know what music “sells” both within the industry and to a large swath of fans.” I think this “Work from Home” song was just created to become popular. I don’t think there is anything honest about it. This is just another one of those songs that degrades men and women and sells sex. I think both the lyrics and video above help prove that.  

 

Second, Is it Independent?

 

The girl band first became noticed by hollywood when they were on season two of X-Factor. Now the band is signed under a major music label. Our reading pointed out that these “large record companies, subsidiaries of even larger media conglomerates, can exert some control over artists’ creative process.” And I think that is the case with this song. When the band first became big, they were completely independant and now the record companies are turning them into money making booty shakers.

Here is a video of one of the first X-factor performances, compared to a recent performance of their new top hit. The difference is huge. I definitely think the record label had a lot to say when it came to the making of this song and video.

 

 

Third, is it Productive?

I don’t think there is anything productive about this song other than selling sex. They did that well. Secretly, I would love it if the people building my house looked like that. But other than that, I don’t think there is much to the video. The world has not been changed because this song now exists.

 

So, that’s all for tonight folks, time to get back to my camping ‘vacation’. Well, until tomorrow when I come back to this smelly bar to do more homework…Sleeping under the stars tonight will be worth it!

 

Have a good day/night!

-Kristine

 

Magazines. They have always been a guilty pleasure. Normally I save them for when I am traveling on airplanes. Since I was a little girl, I have been doing a lot of traveling and part of travel has always included a bag full of magazines. I like reading trashy magazines when travel is because I find them entertaining. But I know that they are trashy, so I only read them when I travel. That’s how I justify it.

I have been reading magazines since I was about 8 or so. When I was younger, I would have much rather been reading a magazine than a book. My long ti
me favorite magazine is Cosmopolitan. [I wasn’t reading Cosmo at 8!] Before Cosmo, I liked reading the celebrity gossip magazines and Seventeen. I would also read GL and other teen beauty and fashion magazines. I read many more magazines when I was younger than I do today.


Currently I read the Economist every week  [a news magazine] and I’ll also read Cosmo every now and then. But it has been over six months since I have even opened an issue [I get it on my tablet every month]. As I said in my last post, I don’t really have the time to do a lot of reading for pleasure. All the reading I do is either daily news or assigned school work. Between the two, I don’t have time to read much of.

Magazines have a huge impact on popular culture. The materials that we went over this week did nothing but enforce that. I ended up watch two of the three documentaries that were options this week. I was having trouble picking between two, so I watched both. I chose to watch the HBO documentary on Vogue and the PBS Frontline documentary on porn. I wasn’t surprised on the overlap of the two videos had.

I really liked looking at the past covers of Cosmo. It was really interesting to see how much
the covers and the magazine have changed throughout the years. The article was written in honor of former Cosmopolitan’s editor-in-chief Helen Gurley Brown. The article stated that Brown is, “not only credited with helping to jumpstart the sexual revolution—making it acceptable for young women to
have sex and enjoy it without guilt—but also for transforming the previously bland Cosmopolitan into a racy, controversial, and wildly successful magazine empire.”  I think it’s really cool how the magazine encourages women to talk about sex and that it is okay for women to enjoy sex.

Today Cosmopolitan is known for sex. The sex story of the month is always the biggest [in font size] headline on the cover. Even though the magazine offers a variety of articles, they are often not the main focus. I personally really like the variety of articles the magazine offers. Yes, I read the sex articles. But I also read the beauty, fitness, lifestyle, and fashion articles as well. It’s not like the whole magazine cover to cover is just advertisements and sex articles.

The short video called “The Perfect Life” that we watched this week reminded me of this speed up video of someone using Photoshop to retouch a model. It’s only about a minute long and I suggest y’all check it out. I used it as a visual aid in a speech for an example on what the ‘standards’ of beauty are. They take this already beautiful women and photoshop her to make her “magazine ready”. It’s gross to see everything that is done to achieve this perfect woman.

 

 

The Perfect life video points out that there is this “impossible image of beauty”. They point out that the “majority of teenage girls have no idea that every photo they see is manipulated.” People look at the way these celebrities and models look in magazines and on television, and don’t realize that they have been photoshopped to look that way. The video keeps enforcing the statement that there is “no perfect women” and that it is a completely unrealistic standard of beauty. Photoshop allows for each flaw to be fixed by a click of the mouse. I found it really interesting when Dr. Nicole Hawkins said that the goal of magazines “is to make us feel a little insecure so we buy to make us feel better about ourselves.

The video didn’t really talk about the Photoshop that happens on men. And its done to them too. Here is a picture of Justin Bieber where we can see where he was photo shopped for the ad.

I found the porn documentary to be very interesting. It is no secret that the porn industry is HUGE and makes billions of dollars. Porn can be another way that the media sets unrealistic standards for women and men, and how sex should be. There are definitely some issues with this just like we saw in the other sources during this section. By setting these unrealistic standards it can lead to the misrepresentation of sex and can cause issues in relationships. It also changes the way men and women think of their bodies and what they need to look like to be ‘doing it right’. The documentary stated that “Millions and millions of people want porn and will pay millions for it.” Not saying that porn affects everyone this way, but neither does Cosmo or Vogue.  

Larry Flynt who is known as the ‘king of porn’ is the CEO of HUSTLER. He owns the magazine, and the store chain. When the documentary was published they were building their fourth store, now they have twenty stores nationwide. Not all of them have the place to buy smoothies and cookies like the Sunset location [They are really good by the way!] but they have all been a huge success. The Hustler Hollywood store on Sunset Ave in LA sells about 10,000 videos each month.  Flynt said, “You can now see on television material just as explicit as we were publishing in Hustler in 1974.” Obviously the porn industry has had to change with the television industry, continuity pushing limits and breaking boundaries. The video states that “The mainstreaming of sexual content that is on cable is forcing some pornographers to go further.” Technology has really transformed the porn industry. When pornographic images are put into the mainstream media, it makes it more ‘acceptable’ or ‘okay’.

One thing I found really disturbing in the film was the female director who was creating a rape fantasy film. She was talking about how the actress, who was also her friend, had no idea the film that they were going to be shooting. She was just told to ‘go with the flow’. Even though it seemed like everything was consensual, the producers of Frontline left because they didn’t want to chance it. That says something. It also made me very uncomfortable when I was watching it.  The director tried to justify it being okay because she was a woman, and that it is only okay for a woman to ask their friend to do this without knowing any details. I thought this was bullshit. It does not matter what sex you are, if you are going to ask someone to be in a movie like this, they should know completely what they are getting themselves into.

The Vogue documentary was also very good. I have never been a huge fan of Vogue. The film was released to celebrate 120 years of Vogue and looked at the 8 of the fashion editors during the past 120 years showing how “fashion has changed dramatically” over the years.  I really enjoyed watching it. I found the responses from the fashion editors about what they do was really funny. None of them could answer the question and it was their job. I was cracking up the whole time. I loved seeing how these editors would do anything to make the shoot work. Even if it meant tying a thread to a scarf and running after a model upstairs to get the perfect shot. I found it really interesting when the fashion editors were talking about other editors fashion choices.  For example when Babs Simpson was disgusted by Lady Gaga’s cover. Simpson thought Gaga was a man and thought the cover was very ugly. The choices that these editors make real impacts on the fashion world.

 

As the article “All Good Print Magazines Go to Digital Heaven…Or Do They?” by Samir Husni, pointed out, not all magazines work in both the digital and print form. It also points out that there is no way to completely tell if a magazine will succeed or not. As times change, so do magazines. Husni states, “At the end of the day if we don’t we create a community where we make our customers feel like members instead of just numbers after a dollar sign, we won’t have anything to publish in print or digital—no long-lasting relationship, anyway, merely a one-night stand.” It is up to the magazine to keep the reader’s attention, weather in print or digital from. Without readers, the magazines will go to ‘magazine Heaven’.

So in the end I thought this was a really interesting section. I also learned that the fashion and the porn industry have a lot in common. They both create unrealistic standards that average people try and live up to.

That’s all for now, talk to you later.

-Kristine

Where are “BOOKS” going?

Books. I have loved books. I have hated books. I have read books for pleasure. I have been forced to read books. So when it comes to my opinion on books, I guess well it depends.

When I was really little [like 3 to 6], I loved to ‘read’ or at least be read to. Every Monday my brother and I went to my grandparents house and they would always take us to altstorytime down at the local library. I still remember how much I loved going to that every week. It is still one of my favorite memories with my grandparents. As I got a little older, that love for books had disappeared.

It’s not like I never read growing up, but it wasn’t my favorite thing. My Dad is not a big reader but my mom always has been. She spends hours reading each week and has done that my whole life. So it’s not like I wasn’t exposed to a lot of reading.

Some people might hate me for saying this, but there are a lot of “classic” books that I have never read. And to be honest, I have never had an interest in reading. For example I have never read the Harry Potter series or Lord Of The Rings.

Fact that you did not need to know: My Dad grew up a Philly’s fan [he grew up in Trenton] and there for I have always like the Philly’s fan. But the SF Giants still have my heart. The Phanatic of the other hand is by far my favorite mascot, with Lou Seal being a close second. :p
When I was about 13 or 14 years old, I started to like reading again. So a little background, I grew up in a middle of nowhere town that took twenty plus minutes by car to get anywhere.  During the summer or over school breaks I would be bored when I was stuck up at my house and there was only sports on the TV. This is when I first picked up a book for pleasure. That first summer I went through about 20 books and books turned into a ‘great escape’ for me.

College BooksNow when I get the chance, I still love to read. But  I don’t really have the time to read for pleasure any more. When I try and pick up a book, I get that thought in my head “Kristine, you have other things you need to do (read for class, study for the GRE, etc)”. I also spend so much time doing reading that I’m assigned that when I’m done with it, I’m burnt out. It almost takes the fun out of reading. I rarely find that ‘great escape’ in anything that I am forced to read.

PilesOfBooks97944673.jpg - (Peter Cade / Getty Images)This has been true my whole schooling career. I have been forced to read a book for some reason or another and I only read enough to get by. I would only read enough to get me a passing grade on the quizzes and essay attached to the reading. I have actually re-read some of the books I was assigned in high school and loved them.  But when I was required to read them, I wanted nothing to do with them.

So when it comes to any reading, assigned or unassigned, I have always liked actual paper bound books better. They don’t hurt my eyes as much and I feel like it is easier not to get distracted. A paper bound book is not going to notify you that you have a new email. When it came to school, I could write all over them  and that has always seemed to help me understand the material. Well in the past year, my opinion has changed or at least for assigned reading. When it comes to reading for school, I have fallen in love with e-books!It's not an i-book or an e-book. It's just a book-book! I never thought those words would be coming out of my mouth…or in this case my fingers. Not only are they much cheaper, lighter and eco-friendly but they allow for much more versatility than a normal book. There’s no bookmarks or sticky tabs that fall off nor do pages rip. If don’t like a note or realize that section does not need to highlighted, it can be easily removed! If you want to find a particular word or phrase instantly, you can search for it. Reading Cartoons and Comics #HD #ebook #read #love #daily #reader #Study #Downloaded #Epubor #Kindle #eReader: And I can access the book anywhere, or anywhere that I have internet. Yes, that means I have to have internet to read, but in most classes I also need internet to submit my work to. So if I didn’t have internet and had the print book and needed to submit something, I would be screwed. And if I am going somewhere where there is no internet, I just print out what I need. E-books have been a game changer in college for me.

The beginning of the article states, “There have been many changes and realignments, and these changes have led many to predict that a) reading is dead; b) books are dead; c) publishing is dead; d) all printed matter is dead. Or that all of the above, if not already dead, will be dead very soon.” But instead book sales are actually up! He also states that the “Young adult readership is far wider and deeper than ever before.” I was very happy reading that sentence. I think it’s great that even with all the technology that is available, young people are still reading.  But still some people believe that with the rise of ebooks that there will soon be no paper bound books. The article points out that the sales of e-books only represent 8-10 percent of the overall book market.

“The State of Publishing” article brought up some really interesting statistics about how the ‘culture’ of books is doing. One of those points are, “ In 2008, the last year complete numbers are available, overall revenue from book sales in the U.S. was at $24.255 billion, down just a tick from $24.959 billion in 2007, the all-time high.” This information is very promising because the numbers are there that books are not ‘dieing’. The article also mentions how library memberships have been rising stating that “Library membership and circulation is at all-time high.” I’m not surprised by this, in fact I have heard this before but I’m blanking on where from. I think the rise to library memberships is partially due to the rise of technology. Today libraries are filled with more than just books. Most of them have free wireless internet and also computer use. Some libraries [like university libraries] have more features like cafes and study rooms that also appeal to people using them. Libraries are more than just a place for students.

I thought the podcast on e-books was really interesting, and it was probably my favorite thing that was assigned this section. I really enjoyed learning about how Amazon will cut profits on a ebook to offer it at a lower price just so they could sell more Kindles.  I had never really thought about it before but it makes since. It also makes sense that because Amazon is doing this, other people are unhappy because they are losing profits.

The podcast also talked about how these ebooks are making “discovering books at bookstores” will be uncommon and therefore book sales will go down. They predict that without people browsing to bookstore, they are not going to pick up as many books. And this will decrease book sales. I disagree with them on this point. People can spend just as much time [if not more] browsing for a book online.

Okay, so the article “A Million Little Lies” literally made me want to tear my hair out. I hope I am not the only one who hated reading this. Not only was the article almost too detailed and hard to follow but this Frey guy is f@#$*&! ridiculous! In my opinion this was just a story that that should have taken five to ten pages and not twenty five.

Book Marketing cartoons, Book Marketing cartoon, funny, Book Marketing picture, Book Marketing pictures, Book Marketing image, Book Marketing images, Book Marketing illustration, Book Marketing illustrationsAt the beginning of the article I was thinking to myself, “Who does that? He could have marketed the book as a fiction novel and none of this bullshit would have happened.”  But obviously, some people are stupid and don’t think like that. But by page 16 or so, I started to think about how smart this guy was. He wrote a fake novel, got the right person to read it, and made millions. It didn’t matter to him that people like The Smoking Gun would find him out, he still came out with millions of dollars.

The beginning of the short novel states, “a six-week investigation by The Smoking Gun reveals that there may be a lot less to love about Frey’s runaway hit, which has sold more than 3.5 million copies and, thanks to Winfrey, has sat atop The New York Times nonfiction paperback best seller list for the past 15 weeks. Next to the latest Harry Potter title, Nielsen BookScan reported Friday, Frey’s book sold more copies in the U.S. in 2005–1.77 million–than any other title, with the majority of that total coming after Winfrey’s selection.” Yes, Frey was wrong by publishing a false book that he told everyone including Oprah that it was 100 percent true. And the Smoking Gun uses a good point when they talk about why would a man “spend 430 pages chronicling every grimy and repulsive detail of his formerly debased life (and then goes on to talk about it nonstop for 2-1/2 years in interviews with everybody from bloggers to Oprah herself)” when it was a completely exaggerated false story.

The 13,450 words that are explaining this man’s exaggerated lies is pointless. I got the point of the article less than 450 words into it, the 13,000 others could go. By the end of the article I hated the Smoking Gun Website more than I hated the guy who lied and made a shit ton of money from it. Good for him.

Instead I think that Frey was smart. He found a way to become a millionaire and a celebrity off a “true book” that turned out to be false. One of the only times I think Frey was telling the truth in the whole article was when he said,”When you have literally hours and hours and hours a day to do nothing because you’re locked in a cell, I found that the best way to pass time was to pick up books.” He just also forgot to add that he found a way to become a millionaire in his spare time too.

Now because of his success his book is becoming a screenplay and is being produced by some pretty big names in Hollywood today. And at this point, I think good for him! At the very end of the article The Smoking Gun States that Frey told publishers that he is “done writing memoirs,” and that he’s “looking forward to showing people that I can write fiction.” This only makes me think more that publishing a false book and getting caught was all part of his genius plan. And hey, it worked.

I thought James Warner’s article “The Future of Books” where he predicts where books are going in the next 100 years was interesting to say the least. I don’t know if he’ll be right, but I sure hope he’s not.  The first two predictions sounded like books were going to turn into a different kind of video game. The whole idea is that books will becoKyle Bean's Future of the Bookme something that absorbs into you. It is also something that the readers will be able to control, just like in a video game. Books will turn into social networking outlets and a way for you to meet people in a whole new way. Next books will become illegal and then will have a ‘comeback’ in a way that we would not expect. Obviously no one knows what the future has to come, but I think these are somewhat scary predictions. According to Warner by year 2080 books will be a sent? That’s crazy.

Looking into the future, I don’t really think we are going to see much change. Yes, burning books - Google Search: ebooks have their benefits. But I don’t think that they are going to wipe out all books or that books will become illegal and everyone will be burning their books like in Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451.  I hope books do not get to a point where they are absorbed 0r that they turn into something that resembles a video game.

As far as the future goes, I can just hope for the best.

That’s all for now everyone! Thanks for reading!

-Kristine