Monday, May 16, 2011

What Would Happen If David Attenborough Got Drunk?

Have you ever wanted to watch a car crash?

I both do and don’t. On one hand the level of destruction would be exciting, bits and pieces flying everywhere, babies being launched from carseats, tyres flying through trees and into nearby houses. not to mention the flaming debris landing in the nearby fireworks factory.

But then there's also the fact that people dying sucks, and if I saw a baby flying through a windscreen I would be scarred for  life, probably cry a little and then get hit in the face by a rogue roman candle from the aforementioned, conveniently located fireworks factory.

There is one car crash, however, that I have to watch. It's gruesome, at times very painful, though it has moments, rare moments, where it can be funny, endearing, all while simultaneously angering me to the very core of my being.

This particular car crash is televised, watched by millions, who I hope merely laugh at it and take solice in the fact that they, the viewer, are more intelligent and overall better as a human being than the people that take part in this menagerie of fake tan and fist pumping.

The car crash, or should I say the documentary I refer to is none other than MTV's  Jersey Shore. The show I love to hate. The show that makes me weep inside yet has the ability to cause me the utmost joy.

It isn’t so much a reality show than a manual for how one should probably not live their life. Unless you're a cast member of course, making millions for acting like a d-bag, getting drunk, gettting laid and going to the fair. Then I'm sure it's a brilliant way to live your life.

If you haven’t seen the show, I firstly ask you why you haven’t, and mentally compare you to a child who says they don’t like a certain type of food, only to try it and love it. I know many who passed their judgement without setting eyes on the show, and this will not do. But for the sake of keeping you informed, the show follows the lives of a group of guidos spending their summer on the Jersey Shore (oh, so that’s where the name comes from).

It's an all-round cast, with characters like the hateable yet oh so lovable "Situation", the crazy drunken dwarf that is Snooki, the car-crash relationship that is Sammi and the giant gorilla of a man Ronnie, Vinnie and Paulie, the lovable twosome that are the funniest things in fake tan I have seen since the original Oompa Lumpa Dance, Angelia, who left after two seasons with a vow to never return, her replacement Deena, and of course who could forget the fake-boobed bombshell that is JWoww.
An example of how much a part of our society they have become.
Kickin' it with Obalms

The show in itself is just a chronicling of their exploits. Drinking too much, getting a little something-something, pranking each other and GTL-ing (for those of you in the dark, that’s the art of going to the Gym, going to get a Tan and doing their Laundry. Brilliant system, right?). 

This show has a huge influence on me, not in the sense that I want to be like these people, but instead in the sense that I have found myself and many people around me using lingo from the show, such as GTL, grenades and FTD (fresh to death, didn't you know). And the one thing I actually do do (hehe) like them, is the shirt before the shirt. This is the art of not putting the shirt you intend to wear out until just before you go out, so there is no chance of it not being pristine.

Another opinion I have in regards to the show, though many may disagree, is that in some ways, it sends out a postive body image message. Obviously the fake tan isn’t that great, but the fact is you see them all looking after themselves, never see them using steroids, undereating or having eating disorders. So there is at least one thing positive coming from it (I know I will probably get hate mail for that and will most likely have to write a whole blog justifying my opinions but hey, that just means more content).

So I’m not saying watch it, I sometimes hate that I love the show as much as I do. But if you do give it a chance (though you will have to give it a few episodes), don’t watch it as a bunch of fist-pumping guidos dancing around. Instead, view it as a documentary about how others live. And maybe, just maybe, it will teach you something about yourself you never knew.

Image from the fun factual site

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