Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Cosmic Debris or Not: Frank Zappa Edition

There's an old sketch film called Amazon Women on the Moon and one of the bits is a parody of the old Leonard Nimoy show, "In Search Of..." called, "Bullshit or Not?" with the tagline "Bullshit or not? You decide." It's a line I like so much that I've stolen it for an irregular series of posts.

Yesterday would have been Frank Zappa's 69th birthday and was officially proclaimed Frank Zappa day in Baltimore by the mayor, something that would have amused him on a number of levels (hat tip to YKW). Let's play today with a quotation from the most clever and cynical figure in American culture to come out of Baltimore since H. L. Mencken.

The '60s was really stupid ... It was a type of merchandising, Americans had this hideous weakness, they had this desire to be OK, fun guys and gals, and they haven't come to terms with the reality of the situation: we were not created equal. Some people can do carpentry, some people can do mathematics, some people are brain surgeons and some people are winos and that's the way it is, and we're not all the same. This concept of one world-ism, everything blended and smoothed out to this mediocre norm that everybody downgrades themselves to be is stupid. The '60s was merchandised to the public at large... My pet theory about the '60s is that there is a sinister plot behind it... The lessons learnt in the '60s about merchandising stupidity to the American public on a large scale have been used over and over again since that time.
So, bullshit or not? As usual, feel free to leave anything from a single word to a dissertation.

Of course, we couldn't leave without some Frank: