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Who is this masked woman? : Writers' Block Party • Page 2 • Writing Forum | WritersDigest.com

Who is this masked woman?

What's going on in your writing world? Connect with the writing community here and talk about whatever's on your mind.
Curious
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RE: Who is this masked woman?

Postby Curious » Thu Feb 23, 2006 9:47 pm

I love the Olympics and don't mind the money spent to train athletes to be the best. It's one of the few times when our society actually sits back and admires anyone at his or her best. So much of our society is dumbed down so that inferior intellects or physiques can feel just as good as everyone else. My daughters have spent most of their school days bored out of their skulls as teachers have pitched lectures at the uninterested "lowest level." If some of us can get money for being the best in the world, great. If we get millions of dollars for being the best in the world, even better. Far too many of us are perfectly happy to give about 30% effort in anything we do.

I'm not sure that the argument about the money spent on Olympics ceremonies convinces me, either. Of course, millions of dollars would be nice for funding AIDS research or feeding the poor. But isn't that true of every single expenditure? Why single out the Olympics? Why not talk about the cost of Pirates of the Caribbean II? A young man once told me of his disgust over the Pope's ring, which could be sold for much and given to the poor. I pointed out that he could sell his second car, too, and give that money to the poor. He became quite upset at me for saying this, but I don't see why. Almost everything we spend could be spent on a worthier cause.

Clare

Jamesaritchie
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RE: Who is this masked woman?

Postby Jamesaritchie » Thu Feb 23, 2006 10:22 pm


Gooblink
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RE: Who is this masked woman?

Postby Gooblink » Fri Feb 24, 2006 2:44 am

I'll tell you what words cover Lance Armstrong: Freak of Nature.

I mean that in a good way. He's amazing.

Curious
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RE: Who is this masked woman?

Postby Curious » Fri Feb 24, 2006 2:52 am


jasipper
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RE: Who is this masked woman?

Postby jasipper » Fri Feb 24, 2006 3:07 am

I feel like I've been transported to some weird alternate universe where the smartest people I know discuss pop stars...

I think I'm getting prematurely old because I don't "get" most of the popular music today. I do have to admit that I've never cared for pop very much though, even in middle/high school. Michael Jackson always freaked me out and when "rap" made it's way onto the scene, I was sure that music was dead forever.

Maybe listening to nothing but Bluegrass, Jazz, Oldies, and Barouque/Classical/Romantic music growing up had something to do with it. Even when I was very young, most of the popular stuff on the radio seemed so trite and talentless. But, there's really no comparison between Pachelbel and The Beatles, anyway...To me, it's like comparing the talents of an artist like Reubens and Pollock. But, people like what they like.

I like some rock as much as the next person. I'm sort of into Nickelback, or at least one of their songs. But, I don't follow the music of most folks. Norah Jones is pretty cool, and my wife has several of her CDs. Sorry, rambling...

I guess what it comes down to for me is looking at whether or not people out there today really LOVE music. Most of the folks I see performing/recording are in it for the money. There's nothing wrong with making money at something like music/art/writing. But, when you start rehashing the same garbage (as most of the current musical sensations do) you're just spreading layers of crap between stacks of carbon paper.

I grew up being taught to LOVE music and art and writing because they are gifts. My family (my extended family, friends, etc.) still gathers once a month to "make music". We all get together on my family's 6th-generation homesteaded land and play the songs we've known for those generations. ANYONE is welcome and EVERYONE is encouraged to participate. It's a tradition of love and expression that I could not explain to anyone else unless they came. It's truly magical and beautiful to me.

So, when I see so many people perverting something I love so much by diminishing it's beauty and character, it really bothers me. I'm afraid that's what pop music does more often than not. I just don't see the love anymore. That makes me profoundly sad.

Jamesaritchie
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RE: Who is this masked woman?

Postby Jamesaritchie » Fri Feb 24, 2006 4:42 am

I grew up listening primarily to Bluegrass, Country, Beboprock from the 50's, 60's, and early 70's, along with Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra, Bing Crosby, Sammy Davis Jr., etc. Even a good bit of swing. I love Classical music, can't get enough Celtic music, and really love some of the New Age music.

I, too, spent a bunch of time in Kentucky, Tennessee, and points south where the family gathered to play the fiddle, the guitar, the banjo, the mandolin, and just about anything Bill Munroe or Flatt & Scrugs ever did would be played before teh evening was finished.

I'm not big on pop music in any way, but I don't think the problem is with pop singers. I think most pop singers love music as much as anyone, anywhere, and I know many of them get together with friends and family and play and sing for the love of it.

My problem with pop music isn't the singers, it's the culture that wants the pop music. Whatever music is popular at any given period of history, or at least since the invention of the radio, is popular because it's what the culture of the time wants to hear, not because the singer does or doesn't love music. Singers don't lead culture, they reflect it.

Rap is the same way. I don't like rap at all, though I make an exception for Cowboy Troy, a rapper like none other. http://www.cowboytroy.com/ And I know he flat loves music, loves rap, and loves what he does tremendously.

But rap, like any othe rpopular form of music, isn't a reflection of the rappers, it's a reflection of the culture.

jasipper
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RE: Who is this masked woman?

Postby jasipper » Fri Feb 24, 2006 5:03 am

I think you're half right. The interesting thing about culture and commercialism is that they drive each other. It's the big wheel of money that goes round and round. It's true that I can't judge the musicians' love for their craft, but the stuff I see over and over again screams commercial/cultural cyclical turnaround.

Thanks for the Cowboy Troy link. It's sort of funny and cool...

JessicaLeigh
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RE: Who is this masked woman?

Postby JessicaLeigh » Fri Feb 24, 2006 5:39 am


yudelka
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RE: Who is this masked woman?

Postby yudelka » Fri Feb 24, 2006 6:36 am

So who is Jessica Simpson?
Just kidding!!! I don't keep up with pop music or pop culture as a whole anymore. I also don't keep up with the Olympics--I know, I'm a freak. What can I say! But then, we don't have a TV--don't feel bad for me, it's a choice. Okay, my son has a small TV for his video games but we don't have cable, or even watch the TV channels.

ANYWAY, as I was saying--when I was younger, I did watch the Olympics some, and enjoyed them just a little. I have to agree with James though, whatever the sports may be, whatever they want to call them, or come up with for next year, it takes talent to perfect it--or at least get close. Making it to the Olympics is, or should be, a great honor for athletes. All the hard work they put into it should be praised. They sacrifice a lot to get there, more than most of us will ever sacrifice for our love for writing.

abqwriter
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RE: Who is this masked woman?

Postby abqwriter » Fri Feb 24, 2006 6:58 am

I have two children who are part of a local climbing team and have made it to the national finals for the past four years.  Climbing was an exhibition sport this year at the Olympics, and it is hoped that the sport will be added in 4 or 8 years as a competitive event.  As I watch how hard my kids work at such a young age - what they're willing to sacrifice in respect to their time, their diet, and recreational life - I am in awe of what these athletes do to make it to the Olympics.  It is the one arena where athletes are tested for their skill, not their ability to bring in season ticket holders.  I, for one, love the Olympics.

And, as for miss snarky - I take with a grain of salt any advice given by someone who is more interested in impressing me with their spiteful spirit than the meat of their message.


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