Thursday, July 08, 2004

Counting Sheep

I finally got around to checking out the blog co-written by Josh Chafetz, the critic who poison-penned Thomas Frank in the Times a few weeks ago. Wowzer! Are these boys dull.


I decided to turn how boring their blog is into a kind of game, a test of endurance. If you can read this post, and then this post, and then--still with me?--this post, straight-through, without snoozing, snoring, or even yawning, I promise to mail you a quarter. For real. If you--honestly, now--can read this self-serious, dry-as-dust, new-generation, post-Sullivan conservative garbage without yawning--even tiny yawns count--I will put a quarter in the mail for you.

Just e-mail me your address with a formal-sounding statement to the effect of: "I hereby solemnly swear I read the entirety of these blog postings by the good people of oxblog without falling even briefly asleep and without yawning even a tiny little yawn. Now give me a quarter."

Can e-mails be notarized?

Nomatter. We will abide by a strict honor system. I trust you to be honest; you trust me to send you a quarter.

If you're a glutton for punishment, here's further proof of the snooze-factor of oxblog, their homepage tagline: "The off-the-cuff political commentary of Josh Chafetz, a 2001 Rhodes Scholar and graduate student in politics at Oxford, David Adesnik, a 2000 Rhodes Scholar and graduate student in international relations at Oxford currently residing in Cambridge, Mass., and Patrick Belton, a graduate student in international relations at Oxford."

Also of utter non-interest, David Adesnik chaffes at being called a humorless elitist here, offering up this astonishingly pompous and regal-sounding statement as a rejoinder to his critic: "Actually, no. Rhodes Scholars may be part of an elite, but 'elitism' refers to those who look down on the mass public. When push comes to shove, I've got a lot of faith in the aggregate rationality of the American public."

The "aggregate rationality," eh? Way to set us straight on the point of your humorless elitism, Davey. Of course, it would never occur to prigs like these that the reason they come off as humorless, self-serious elitists is not because they have Rhodes scholarships or because they are graduate students in something-or-other at Oxford, but because they plaster this information, prominently and frequently, all over their friggin' website! They probably thinks it makes them sound professional and accomplished. All it really does is make them sound like the credential-mongering respect-whores they are.


Postscript

OK, ok, I'll admit it. Sometimes oxblog has some interesting things to say. I found this tippy-top post quite illuminating.

9 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The only thing worse than credential-shouting elitist prigs: people who try to downplay said credentials by saying things like "Oh I go/went to a little school in Providence/Cambridge/etc." I have been on the receiving end of this more than once. Punishment that fits the crime: forcing these assholes to misrepresent themselves on all future resumes, author bios, and about our contributors pages by saying they attended "Brown Technical Institute" or "Harvard Vocational College in Harvard, Mississippi."

July 9, 2004 at 11:43 AM  
Blogger TinyRabbit said...

If you had to watch the weird, knowing look that comes over anyone's face when you say that you went to Harvard, you'd do your best to "attend college in Boston" too. (That's why they call it the "H-bomb.") Honestly, I'm as dopey as they come--I just like a big motherf*%#ing library in which to do my geekish noodling and whatnot. No name, no expectations. But I'm not going to pretend it hasn't helped me, either--here sitting in my bandana and sweats manning the phones at our foolish publishing startup and having the publisher bring his new round of backers by, point me out, and call me "the smartest receptionist in town!" Whatever makes me the big bucks, right? Oh, wait...

July 9, 2004 at 6:31 PM  
Blogger Bobo said...

I love making that "weird, knowing look." Keep in mind that their is also the weird, smug, 'top-that' look that comes over the faces of people who've just mentioned that they are going/go/have gone to Harvard. I guess it's there right, the just reward for mastering the damnably difficult their/there distinction!

C-line, you are the one and only person in the world I will forgive for having gone to Harvard.

bobo

July 9, 2004 at 7:30 PM  
Blogger Hurricane James said...

I'm always making that "weird, knowing look." At least it’s not the perplexing and even weirder look that accompanies my dropping the Sarah Lawrence S-bomb and the subsequent and even more weird spectacle of me scrambling to explain how I attended an all-girls school. And Bobo, don't you think the Your/You’re thing is a toughie too?

July 10, 2004 at 1:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Um, re: your comment to CW, I would like to be forgiven in advance for my H-bomb affiliation. This might seem premature but it will weigh (way?) on my mind until I have your blessing. (EVE.)

July 14, 2004 at 6:28 PM  
Blogger Bobo said...

Most definitely premature. I will have to wait and see what being affiliated with the H-bomb does to your personality and general affect before pardoning you for it.

July 15, 2004 at 12:51 AM  
Blogger Anonymous said...

Try explaining that you went to the S-bomb but transfered to any Ivy-bomb. I did this at my _ Press interview and the woman made two noises: an "ahhh" with a beam for Columbia and a "oh" with a semi-scowl for SLC. Then she sized me up and I think she decided I was slightly deranged.

Oh yeah, and I have to say, the H-bomb kids get way more privileges than the regular Ivy Leaguers. Um, can we say New Yorker feeder?'Cept Brown cuz not only are they well-connected and rich but have an "artsy" rep too so they take all the creative jobs...Sorry rabbit.

July 16, 2004 at 9:18 AM  
Blogger Bobo said...

A "New Yorker" feeder? A far more grave injustice is that it is THE feeder for "The Simpsons" staff writer positions.

July 16, 2004 at 11:05 AM  
Blogger TinyRabbit said...

More screeching from atop our own shared ivory tower, (Eve might be the only one who had the especial pleasure of having school years with her): In the latest Abercrombie & Fitch "magazine", er, catalog Olivia Wilde, nee Cockburn, talks about being sent to Andover to "straighten out" and then how our shared alma mater's theatre department inspired her and she went off to California, married the son of an Italian prince (really), and started an independent film production thingamajig (all before she was old enough to drink). True, true, the very FACT that I happened to be thumbing through this publication undercuts my astounded incredulity, but still. (If it is any consolation, I was in a mall in Louisiana when I came face to face with her pretty blonde visage at ten times the normal size splashed across the storefront. What I was doing in the mall or Louisiana is entirely up for grabs. Getting in touch with my inner Britney, perhaps? Trying to find the very source of her elusive "boom boom"? (Reader: It's Bourbon Street and it reeks.))

July 20, 2004 at 4:42 PM  

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