Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Long time no blog 好久不写博克

It's been a while, and I'm going to keep this brief. This blog was always just a little sound board and I love the response to the GaGa post! I don't care if you love it or hate it - you read it and it produced a reaction. Shit, does that make me like GaGa? How ironic. Anyway, I now have another blog, focusing on Chinese pop culture, and I spend the rest of my time writing freelance articles about nice things like temples and spa owners. I will occasionally saunter back here to sound off about various things and write blog posts full of four letter words when I have the time.

If you are interested in things like football in China (come on, think about it - a football mad country with 1.3bn people struggles to produce a decent football team, what's going on?), the Chinese obsession with cute poop cartoons, what Lady GaGa means in Chinese and Chinese Lady GaGa imitators (Oh the horror! Can you imagine, pop stars copying other pop stars and pretending they are original?) then you can have take a gander at: www.chinarama.wordpress.com

I use wordpress because it is better X 1000.

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Friday, March 19, 2010

Lady GaGa - The rise of an Idiot.

Shockingly clever to morons and praised as 'exciting!' by boring people, the rebel pop princess Lady GaGa (who is obviously a giant tool) is currently being hailed as a relevant à la mode cultural commentator and artistic genius this side of cutting edge.

I was hoping to go long enough without having to formulate an opinion on the pseudo avant-garde artiste. And then this happened:

The Lady GaGa ft. Beyonce video

Lady Gaga has, once again, nabbed what is already out there in the media sphere, copy and pasted the best bits, covered it in thongs, shit and glitter and curated it as her self-created personal artistic vision. Tarentino loves it. Michael Gondry doesn't.

Telephone is another video that's a blur of pop and dance, supposedly groping and grinding its way in the direction of, ahem, 'female empowerment.' Oh yeah, and this time it's also “a commentary on being overfed communication and advertisements and food in the US” and about "the kind of country that we are." Hmm...vague. Lyrically, it's challenged.

Telephone is not just about someone trying to get hold of you in a club, it's about the GaGa feeling suffocated by the nagging voice she hears telling her she needs to get back to work...Deep. Anyway, we'll stop there because trying to further analyse GaGa's lyrics is like necromancy or dancing about accountancy – it's pointless.

Luckily, GaGa has a following of fans almost as dedicated as the Despair Faction or the CCP's very own 五毛党, otherwise known as the 50 cent party (not related to the rapper). At the time of writing the video had been viewed one billion times. Any criticism of the video that appeared on the cesspit of 'yoof' culture that is the Youtube comment board was met by GaGa fans with the ferocity of a Minotaur; explanations of the video were also offered to those of us who are too stupid to 'get' the meglomanic GaGa.

Th<3nx> jakuna3333, so you mean like GaGa and Beyonce are forced to put Flouride and shit in our food as part of a Communist Disney plot to take over the world?

So what do we have here then?

Well, she's led into jail, which is a continuation of a previous video and that's clever. Apparently. Then she makes a dig at the accusations (of her being a man) that not only plagued herself, but also Gwen Stefani and Dana International. This apparently shows some balls (if you excuse the pun). It is also revealed that she, in fact, has no sex organs at all.

GaGa then struts about the yard wearing some glasses made of, and containing, cigarettes. Why? Because, it's tedious and pretentious and will have people guessing for years to come. Probably something to do with hiding behind objects and the girl being attracted not to GaGa, but the smell of the cigarettes, which symbolize materialism...Wow. She's like deconstructing pop culture. I think my brain just fell out through my ears.

Next up, it's the start of the hideous product placement, but it's alright folks, because GaGa says it's iron-ik. She's meant to be making a mockery of product placement.

OK so Virgin were her tour sponsors and GaGa is the creative director for Polaroid; she is helping with Polaroid's product design and also features Polaroid in the video too...I mean that's like OK because...actually I can't even come up with a faux reason involving irony that an idiot GaGa fan would let dribble out his/her mouth here. Ironic or not, it's still product placement. In fact, it's jaw-droppingly similar to Bill Hick's predicted ultimate television commercial.

Videos like this need a huge budget and can only be made using product placement, so undoubtedly the product placement was necessary. Other pop stars wishing to compete will undoubtedly have to do the same thing, and music videos will just become another major ground for advertising. Thanks GaGa for exacerbating exactly what you were meant to be attempting to sabotage or critique.

Ah ha, then she morphs into a negative of Amy Winehouse and starts dancing in bra and thong, because it's an ironic take on the sexualisation of women, yeah? Cos like in music videos they are always half naked, yeah? Sure, I mean, it doesn't matter that GaGa is always strutting about in a leotard or thong of some description and has been quoted as saying she doesn't consider herself a feminist because she 'hails' men (thereby failing to give credit to the movement that tries to change the double standard she challenges and perpetuating the stupidly incorrect male hating stereotype).
Was she ironically being ironic about being ironic? Is everything Lady GaGa does ironic? Would she be an ironic vegetarian? Would she eat meat, ironically, whilst tittering and winking at vegetarian passers-by?

Anyway, then this happens:

I can like totally identify, Gah Gah, your body is a crime scene after being raped by the music/advertising industry/fame/men/money. Oh man, you're like even referencing the final scene from Michael Moore's, 'Capitalism: A Love Story,' without even realising it. So what do you propose we do about these issues?

Beyonce arrives in Quentin Tarantino's Pussy. Wagon and they share a metaphorical boner-lesbo moment. Beyonce sings, without the aid of (as much) product placement and so called ironic digs. Because a) she was too uncomfortable, b) she is too stupid and not ironic enough or c) she is so intelligent she was ironically not being ironic? You choose. I vote all three.

Anyway, it continues with lots of pop culture references, product placement and many people dying. Then, the realisation comes to you slowly but surely...oh it's like 'social commentary' on...America...Capitalism...celebrities used in advertising...ooh!Consumerism...food obsession...and stuff...Brilliant(ly vague!)! Thanks GaGa you ambassador of no logos/labels/brands you!! OMG, you are like an in-telek-chall genie!! GaGa you should like totally get Naomi Klein to feature in your next video!!

Ooh I get it. Adverts/junk food/TV and is poison for our brains. You are a true pop philosopher.

Anyway, it doesn't end there. GaGa and Beyonce start dancing in stars and stripes outfits.

With a nauseating excitement you realise they are surrounded by corpses! What does this mean? Is she referencing Thriller? Then BAM! The TRUTH hits you like an atom bomb in the face. They are America! America dances on while people are dead/dying. Whether it's due to Aids, starvation, advertising or war, isn't important. The idea is enough to evoke anarchy. The viewer walks away (because the end of the video is just more pop culture references) shattered, but empowered having been shown the truth.

Nice one GaGa. You have managed to change my entire world view in 9 1/2 minutes. Before I was politically apathetic and now I'm like not, yeah? So I'm off to wave both middle fingers at McDonalds, The Government and your Polaroid adverts, then smoke some glasses.

"(ad)verts b-b-b-buzzing thru ma brain/It's driving me ins-s-s-sane/What's d-d-d-driving us isn't passion, music and art/We need to get off this train."
Or something.
GaGa promotes Polaroid.
Let's be honest, eh?
GaGa has not suddenly started highlighting global issues or sending out actual messages regarding the negative aspects of free trade or materialism. The video's so-called 'social commentary,' doesn't actually critique anything at all. It also seems to be aimed at a rather odd demographic: people elitist enough to snigger corporate brainwashing or depressing dominant values in society, yet feeble-minded enough to succumb to the common place fame hungry Lady GaGa. It's littered with enough pop cultural references for anyone who is interested in anything to pull out and 'identify with', with some controversy thrown if for good measure. She is, at best, another Emimen.
And even then, lyric and wittiness-wise, one could argue that she doesn't even come close. GaGa hasn't yet managed to weave any of her so-called messages, the famed sardonic wit or her cited influences (the German poet, Rilke, or David Bowie) into her music - thus making her seem like a vacuous name dropping prick. GaGa's music lies in the performance and costumes, rather than the actual music itself - which is surely what music should actually be about. Despite what she says about her music having, 'real, genuine, like, soul of innovation, ' it just simply doesn't. It's basic pop, derivative and shows no lyrical talent.

Her songs lack genuine emotion; so what you get when she performs live in an effort to put 'emo-shon' into her songs is a lot of grunting and shouted lines while wearing a see-through throng combined with 34 backing dancers dressed as foetuses, and a lion suspended from the ceiling spraying blood (the latter prop is to ensure controversy). It's about as formulaic as you can get. GaGa herself is a brand surrounded by her Haus of GaGa cronies who style and advise her. GaGa - who thinks she is the epitome of avant-garde - is actually worried she isn't; the result of this: a demented, whoring attempt to fill in the blanks using other media and then cover it up with so-called "A-R-T".

The pop culture references that are deemed 'cool' are just an example of Sociologist theories stating that we no longer experience the world directly; it merely is presented to us as a representation. With Telephone what we have here is the best of the 80s condensed into a bite sized chunk and thrown back in our faces because it's 'cool'. GaGa hasn't created anything new, just regurgitated what has been done before and stamped GaGa TM on it.

There are plenty of truly artistic female artists out there (Bat for Lashes, Roisin Murphy, Bjork, St. Vincent,Regina Spektor, Karen O, Kang Mao to name but a few...) who sing fantastically, write their own - intelligent - lyrics, and play - rather than bang - their own instruments. They command a great stage presence without resorting to the obscene, stripping down to their undies in an attempt to be ironic, or moonlighting within extra-stupendous videos.

Unfortunately many of GaGa's fans don't "get" the idea of musicians anymore; instead they'd rather troll around on BBS boards to debate the meaning of a soul-less video, embrace her outfits more than her music and, regardless of sexual preference, jerk off to the feminist-misogynist that is Gaga's vague incoherent bottomless crack of a persona. Lady Gaga has given birth to an orgy of idiots who don't value true musicians or artists and has made an artistic license out of leading them to believe they are witnessing something that's distorting the boundaries of music and art.

They are witnessing nothing but this:
The rise of an Idiot

Nathan Barley idiot <-------------------> Lady GaGa

Obscene enough for ya?! (Fame Sleaze copyright - Tabitha's musings 2010)
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Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Christmas Chills

Oh, so soon it will be Christmas. Many many moons ago, on Christmas day I was born into this world and into the hands of my woeful owner. I always cursed the manufacturers for producing me so close to Christmas. My first sight was that of that metallic garland known as tinsel. Tinsel is only for dinner ladies who wear it in their hair during the season.

Christmas in the UK = 7 ¾ weeks of moaning about Christmas coming earlier and earlier each year by manic shoppers who still fall prey to the same friggin’ trap each year X Christmas adverts featuring celebrities who gyrate up and down the aisles of chain stores and self depredating adverts for women (*does your face look like scorched macaroni? Are you old leaky, pathetic and repulsive, along with being female? Well here come the girls! Yeah!*)÷ pointlessly high expectations of the actual day + the depressing empty feeling you get by 5pm Christmas day + old people dying from the cold and lack of heating.

That’s why Christmas in China can be a nice break. Christmas is Dead in China. I mean, how else are you meant to feel when you walk into a shopping mall and see Father Christmas bizarrely nailed to a cross. A misunderstood idea that Baby Jesus grew up to be Santa (as designed by Coca Cola) maybe? Or maybe it was a reference to China going back its roots and sacrificing consumerism? Actually, it’s just China doing what it does best: Combining things it doesn’t understand with things that don’t match. Yes, that’s right, like floral cushions on red leather sofas.

The Chinese equivalent to Christmas is *nod nod* correct! Chinese New Year. It’s a festival that is truly about family, chatting, traditional food with symbolic meaning and general celebration. It is terribly noisy and people still fight for food and barricade themselves in like back home, but it’s stuck to its guns over the centuries and not wandered down a plastic tacky root, akin to Christmas.

And what's with all this?When did Father Christmas become associated with sex exactly?

Look at what happened to baby Jesus
Sexy Santa

Who came up with sexy Santa Christmas underwear? I’m still waiting for my sexy Chinese dragon leotard and face mask to prance about in, come February 14th 2010.
So what has Christmas become eh? Well, an amalgamation of all that’s glittery, red, consumerist and Father Christmas. It’s simply become a party in Jordan’s brain (sponsored by Heat magazine), projected into reality for all of us to suffer and accept.

From one of those horrible sites called something like jibjabjihad.com, where you can elf yourself up, plaster it's face on a mug and buy it, in order to fill that little sad spot inside you and make you feel better.
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Sunday, September 13, 2009

Jackie's Visa Castle

Hoorah, Tabitha is back in action! No more Chinese internet censorship for me.

"How did you do it?" I hear you cry. The answer is - Magic. I can divulge no further for fear of encroaching on the 8th Harry Potter book rumoured to be set in a Dystopian future where the internet highway is blocked by a Baron Freespeechblockamort, and Harry and chums must work out a way round it.

I will now hand over the reigns to my pitiful owner as the guest writer for today.

I've spent the last week manically trying to stop my visa from expiring in my little hands. I spent two weeks in Hyperactive Stress Mode (similar to Berserk Mode in RPGs, but more neurotic) trying to get the relevant forms from my University and the reluctant local police station, whilst being thoroughly aware of my rapidly expiring visa. Then it was off the middle of nowhere outside the 59th ring road for a medical to prove that I don't have AIDS. The medical also checked my blood pressure, weight, height, hearing, sight, colour blindness, heart rate and internal organs. Luckily, the visa application process is pretty relaxed with ID, needing only your passport, dental records and your original umbilical cord.Then it's back to the other side of town and off to the Division of Exit & Entry Administration of Beijing Public Security Bureau 出入境管理

I arrived at the Bureau.


No one would serve me, because I hadn't yet picket up a ticket. The ticket machines print off a 4 digit-number ticket for you that indicate how many people are waiting ahead of you. Mine was 1408. This then qualifies you to sit in the Visa Waiting Area and listen out for your number to be called, but at the same time there are different numbers being called out for people waiting for a different service (residence permits, over due visa processing, visas for Hong Kong nationals and so on). The result is hearing "Ticket 1311 please go to.../Ticket 12B79 please go to..."

simultaneously whilst different numbers are flashing on a separate screen in front of you screen. I could see people quite literally crying with fear. As it came close to my number being announce, I grew anxious. When the moment came, after 2 hours, I leapt up only to realised I was simply being allowed to join the long queue that snaked it's depressing way around the interior. I waited inline, bored.

When my moment eventually occurred, it was disappointing brief and impersonal. My medical form was glanced at, my 21 passport photos were snatched from me and my passport was extracted from my hands with no words


"Come back in a week to collect it. NEXT!

What? That was it? That was the big moment? That was what all these days of nervous anxiety and rushing to have my blood taken had led to? Where was the interaction? The moments leading up to it were dull.

Inside the entry and exit bureau


As a result I propose the queuing process should be made more 'fun' and 'interactive' just to keep the adrenaline pumping application process consistent right up until the end.

It should work out so that you have to get your 87 digit service number from an Exit and Entry Bureau Employee who acts out the numbers in abstract dance and you have to work out what the numbers are. They perform the dance twice: once normally and the second time in reverse. You then have to convert that number into binary code (with the aid of a small handbook that you can only obtain by answering a series of questions on the history of Feminism in Estonia). You have 5 minutes to convert the number. Once your time is up you have to wait until what you *think* may be your 'number dance' is shown on the large screen in the middle of the room - that's your cue to go to service desk NG15368X (or whatever one is recommended). You have 14 seconds to get to the service desk, but you're not allowed to run. When you get there, you have to recite your number (now in binary coding) whilst someone throws balls with numbers written on them at your face.

You can not make any mistakes.

You get 60 seconds.

When you succeed, you can hand over your application and receive some kind of feedback on how well you filled out the form or how different you now look to your passport photo.

The End.

Get anything wrong or miss the time limits at any point and you have to repeat the whole process again.Exciting! Imagine the adrenaline rush! They could film it all and show the highlights as a television programme, with Chris Rock doing the commentary . It would be like Takeshi's Castle.

Perhaps they could employ Jackie Chan to shoot at you with a strong water pistol from a hovering plane whilst you attempt to hand over your visa forms. No one would ever succeed and the Chinese Government could relax in the knowledge that as the visa process is now utterly impossible rather than just annoying, dull and inconvenient; the number of foreigners in the country will decrease in time for the October 1st 60th anniversary of the Chinese Communist Party. The end credits would roll over an image of a boot stamping on a visa application form. Forever.

Jackie's Visa Castle*2

*1: Photo is only a representation. The featured image is actually of the Inside of the New York Stock Exchange...but you get the idea.

*2: Artist's Impression.

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Monday, July 6, 2009

Tabitha's Files Banned In China

I have been out of action for a while. Blogspot.com is currently banned, so I can only access the site my clawing my way through a proxy server. It limits what I can upload. I feel depressed.
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Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Twittering Twitchet *despondent moan*

I've join Twitter. I was bullied into doing it. I don't get how it works or how it even benefits individuals...Here it is in all it's feeble stuffed toy glory .
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Sunday, May 10, 2009

Coco-cola involved in using mag to rebel shocker!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I am still struggling to get to grips with human life. Recently I heard that Coco-Cola is going to be promoting female empowerment.

Nationwide, the 'Diet Coke' female will be invited to 'Join the Rebellion' and celebrate her right to say no to the pressures and expectations of modern day life. What's a Diet Coke female? And what rebellion? Rebellion against modern life? Does this mean that all girlies that sip diet coke will be allowed to become rebels? Will dustbins be full of heeled shoes, hair straighteners and make-up? I decided to look into this a little further.

Coca-Cola’s press release states that they will be teaming up with Company magazine and producing a miniature magazine called, ‘Rebel.’ The first ‘impactful’ (nice one Cola even I, a creature that literally has cotton wool for brains, knows that ‘impactful’ does not appear in the English sodding dictionary…) issue will have articles on beauty, fashion and that staple magazine ingredient, 'celebrities', who ‘hint’ (urgh, that vague word, that basically implies no balls subtlety) at REBELLION. It’s obvious that Coco-Cola knows its market and hence, the brainless press release.

However, one only has to do a half-arsed double take to realise that campaign makes no sense. The aim of the campaign is to encourage the readers to say NO to the pressures of modern life. What might those pressures be….hmm. As a kitty, beauty, fashion, looking good and finding Mr Right doesn’t exist….Therefore, I would definitely say they are modern pressures for women…yet, in this new Cola magazine, they will be being flashed at women as though they are tools of empowerment. On top of that, this ‘Rebel’ magazine is featuring within Company magazine that already pretends style, beauty, consumerism and celeb gossip are vital to being a girl and therefore empowering. Such concepts are not empowering and are just self-immersing dross. It’s a magazine, like most womens magazines, that is barely connected to the outside world except via celebrities.

Yes, human society has moved on in one way from the 1950s, the ‘golden age’ of womens magazines, when articles focused on housework and knitting. However in their place, we now have these magazines that are so girlie and brainless that it makes me feel nauseous and lucky that I’m not human. Pages and pages filled with shitty garbage about current style trends, make up tips, sex tips, ‘secrets about men’. As these magazines realise they have nothing left to write about, they fill their obsolete pages with celebrity gossip; worshiping celebrity cretins like the Egyptians worshiped gods (and cats) and divulging every useless bit of pap about the soddingly dull lives of celebrities. The general assumption is that these magazines are empowering because they focus on women and ‘what women should like’. Yet all it means is that they are just encouraging women to be self-absorbed consumers, obsessed with trivialities and fixated on their personal lives at the expense of more broadly meaningful concerns. It seems, puzzlingly enough, that many women like to identify with that woeful ‘singleton’ and frivolous neurotic, Bridget Jones: Bridget Jones is the end result of womens magazines.

Anyway, my case in point is that it is utterly depressing that Coco-Cola, a large brand that sadly has a lot of influence, is simply just advertising via a womens magazine, under the guise of faux female empowerment.

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