I like a lot of things. My tastes are very random, from horror movies to Disney films, pro wrestling and politics, my iPod (actually, it's an S3 now) has Social Distortion and Kelly Clarkson on it. I have far too many hobbies including comics, video games, collecting vinyl and building a big movie library, and the older I get, the more I realize I'm just too busy to actively hate art that doesn't fit my particular tastes. Don't get me wrong, I still find time to complain (it's the best!), but I've never hopped on the "OMG JUSTIN BIEBER IS THE WORST!" or "TWILIGHT SUX BALLZ!" trains because I just don't care enough to even know what those things are. I'm not going to waste the time that could be spent watching a horror movie or playing through my back catalog of video games on complaining about sparkly vampires.
It's why there was such a dry spell on the blog in the last year, I just didn't care enough to write or podcast about something that wasn't fun. WWE wasn't entertaining me, so I turned it off. Now, while there are things that still bug me about the show (and always will), I'm excited for WrestleMania and excited to write about WWE again.
Patrick Stump, lead singer of Fall Out Boy, wrote a really great piece this week on the "Culture of Hate" and its impact on our culture.
Now, I’m not saying I like [Nickelback and Dane Cook]. Like you (fellow pop culture spectator) I am honor-bound by the unspoken law that, no matter what, I am not allowed to say anything positive about these artists. What have they really done wrong? Have they offended me? Not really... Yet for some reason, here I am crippled by a vague and probably unwarranted desire not to appear to be a fan of Nickelback and Dane Cook.
That’s sad. In this generation of blazing wi-fi and scathing tweets, I think it’s very easy to lose sight of anyone else’s opinion. We’re so busy broadcasting our latest cultural disdain that we scantly notice anything we enjoy. “Oh man, this Rebecca Black kid is terrible! Let’s laugh at her!” has become more culturally relevant than “I really love this new Bilal record.” I read an entire article examining why we as a society don’t like Anne Hathaway’s (in my unnecessary opinion, lovely) face. Well, criticizing art and the artists that make it is a lazier pass time than creating or appreciating it.
Now, in my younger days, I was one of those people loudly hating on Nickelback (their music is terrible, but not gonna lie, they put on a hell of a live show), but as Stump explains, wouldn't that energy be better suited celebrating the things we like?
There's this culture now of "hate-watching" television shows, NBC's Smash was notorious for it, I've also heard people hate-watching WCW, TNA, even WWE... why? From the few episodes I've seen, I downright loathe The Big Bang Theory, so I just don't watch it. TNA hasn't entertained me since, well, ever, so that's why I don't watch it anymore. That's not to say these things don't deserve critique or even outright negativity, but to actively devote your precious time to something that makes you angry?
Ever seen the movie Private Parts with Howard Stern? I'm reminded of the scene where Pig Vomit finds out that Howard Stern haters listened to his show longer than Howard Stern fans, that can't be healthy. Or, you're secretly a fan of these things you claim to hate and "hate-watch" to appear cool while watching/listening/etc. Yes, I'm saying if you're an active Bieber hater, you're probably jamming to "Baby, baby, baby" when no one's around.
The only exception to this rule is Randy Orton... OMG he's the sux.