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Learning to resist the dismiss
March 18, 2008 7:48 PM   Subscribe

It's not OK to dismiss an entire country because you couldn't resist making a lame joke.

I'm calling out allkindsoftime in particular here, but really could we be a bit more careful about dismissing an issue because it's outside of the US or the UK?

It's tedious to read this kind of reaction or general assumptions so frequently. Also it's disappointing because this has been discussed before and yet it still happens so frequently.
posted by gomichild to Etiquette/Policy at 7:48 PM (130 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

FIST!
posted by Mister_A at 7:52 PM on March 18, 2008


I was just talking to a coworker this morning (in US, of course...where else would anyone be?) about the fact that no one uses the word "skrike" here. If I were to yell, "cut out all your skriking!", people would be confused.
posted by Burhanistan at 7:55 PM on March 18, 2008 [1 favorite]


Oh, go harpoon a whale, freako.
posted by Kwantsar at 7:55 PM on March 18, 2008 [1 favorite]


Oh, I actually got to see the offending comment this time.
posted by 517 at 7:55 PM on March 18, 2008


We're whalers on the moon, we carry a harpoon...
posted by Krrrlson at 7:56 PM on March 18, 2008


Sensitive freakin' Aussies. Lordy. You'd think a land of felons would have thicker skin.
posted by xmutex at 7:56 PM on March 18, 2008 [17 favorites]


Only sensitive when already riled about imported American religious nutters...
posted by pompomtom at 8:03 PM on March 18, 2008


I'm all for healthy discussion and debate over somewhat taboo matters, and I'd be lying if I didn't enjoy seeing heated snark fired across the battlefield of the Blue. But this is a single, side comment! It's a single joke! There's nothing else to it!
"Flag it and move on" has never been more apt.
posted by flatluigi at 8:04 PM on March 18, 2008 [1 favorite]


You know who else dismissed.... oh, never mind.

It's a rare thing to meet an Aussie (assuming gomichild is one) who can't stomach someone taking the piss. Jokes are jokes. Americans are myopic, sure, but it's not like the rest of us don't make fun of them for it, right?
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 8:05 PM on March 18, 2008


Australia is entirely irrelevant in all respects, but proper Metafilter etiquette requires that we simply not comment in threads pertaining to topics about which we have no interest.
posted by Mr. President Dr. Steve Elvis America at 8:07 PM on March 18, 2008 [1 favorite]


But Australia is so much fun to diss, with the kangaroos and the koalas and the Croc Hunter guy and the massive beer cans and the funny looking opera house and the bald guy from Midnight Oil and Nicole Kidman and Mel Freaking Gibson and the shrimps and the barbies and the 'land of outlaws' and the accents and Huge Assman or whatever his name is and the freaking town they named Alice! Now who goes naming a town Alice?!?
posted by wendell at 8:10 PM on March 18, 2008 [3 favorites]


You forgot baby eating dingos, sir.
posted by Burhanistan at 8:11 PM on March 18, 2008


Strangely enough both Nicole Kidman and Mel Gibson were born in the USA. Want to try again?
posted by AmbroseChapel at 8:15 PM on March 18, 2008


Now who goes naming a town Alice?!?

Texans?
posted by misozaki at 8:16 PM on March 18, 2008


Hey guys, remember that mefi mail feature?
posted by kuujjuarapik at 8:19 PM on March 18, 2008 [4 favorites]


Jokes are jokes, but some comments are too tedious and unfunny, such as using an attempt at a one liner to categorise an entire nation, whether it be about criminal Australians, whale harpooning Japanese, drunken Irish, frog marching Germans, homosexual Greeks, lazy Mexicans, surrendering French, obnoxious loud mouthed Americans or whinging Poms. There is no value in such comments, other than indicating that the poster has nothing of value to add.
posted by goshling at 8:19 PM on March 18, 2008


Ha! You forgot Dumb Polacks!



D'oh!
posted by Doohickie at 8:20 PM on March 18, 2008


Texas has most town names covered, actually, so it doesn't count. Though, this is odd. Too much googling!
posted by Burhanistan at 8:20 PM on March 18, 2008 [3 favorites]


Speaking of disappointing... I have stated in the original post that this is a single reference to several instances of this happening over a long period of time - not just this one comment. I'm well trained in being able to handle piss-taking - but everyone just has a breaking point where it gets beyond frustrating.

This is not just about Australia either - if you are wondering why there are fewer posts recently about China or Korea for example it's due to the same dismissing attitude.
posted by gomichild at 8:21 PM on March 18, 2008


There is no value in such comments, other than indicating that the poster has nothing of value to add.

I'm not defending it as a good joke or a clever comment, at all. It wasn't. Just the principle. I wish (OH HOW I WISH) that all comments that were just plain stupid were deleted on sight, but that's not going to happen. As it goes for regular comments, so it goes for attempts at humour.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 8:25 PM on March 18, 2008


if you are wondering why there are fewer posts recently about China or Korea for example it's due to the same dismissing attitude.

I just made a dismissing attitude. In my pants.
posted by docpops at 8:26 PM on March 18, 2008


I would just like to say that the Aussies have always been one of my favorite groups on mefi. Srsly, I mean that. Cool bunch of people.
posted by vronsky at 8:26 PM on March 18, 2008


Note: The OH HOW I WISH PART was an attempt at humour. It may or may not also have been stupid.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 8:26 PM on March 18, 2008


goshling said: "Jokes are jokes, but some comments are too tedious and unfunny, such as using an attempt at a one liner to categorise an entire nation, whether it be about criminal Australians, whale harpooning Japanese, drunken Irish, frog marching Germans, homosexual Greeks, lazy Mexicans, surrendering French, obnoxious loud mouthed Americans or whinging Poms. There is no value in such comments, other than indicating that the poster has nothing of value to add."

No value? None? What if it's really, really funny? Like, End of the World funny where it's meta-funny, and the stereotypes are actually mini-political riffs, and it's a joke buried inside a stereotype wrapped in an enigma covered in French armpit hair?

I guess I'm saying I think it's a pretty broad brush to say that no national stereotype or cultural stereotype humor can ever be funny, no matter what.

We just shouldn't be lazy about it. And also, it has to be actually funny, not just "ha ha I said 'dingo ate yaor baybee'".

THE END.
posted by pineapple at 8:30 PM on March 18, 2008 [2 favorites]


Well, ain't we a pair, raggedy man?
posted by False Dichotomy at 8:32 PM on March 18, 2008 [1 favorite]


Haven't gotten to that yet. Still figuring out how not to judge 'Lethal Weapon' by Danny Glover.
posted by zennie at 8:32 PM on March 18, 2008 [1 favorite]


In a recent thread about city dwellers moving to the country to live off the land the first brilliant comment was a link to dueling banjos on youtube. We've never heard that joke, right? But it stayed. And the same member that posted that drivel was upset today because obama's unifying speech wasn't posted on the blue.

People can be idiots, and those type comments are allowed to stay. So you're fighting a losing battle. Just skip them. You'll be happier.
posted by justgary at 8:38 PM on March 18, 2008


This is not just about Australia either - if you are wondering why there are fewer posts recently about China or Korea for example it's due to the same dismissing attitude.

Wait a second. Back up. Is there really anyone else feeling this way? Even you, gomichild, did you think "well, here's something great that's also Austrailian, but I'm not posting it: it won't be worth the anti-Australia bias."?
posted by StrikeTheViol at 8:40 PM on March 18, 2008


I just made a dismissing attitude. In my pants.

Nice. Did you mean to make that comment from a sock puppet account? I ask because normally your comments are productive and helpful.
posted by mlis at 8:40 PM on March 18, 2008


This calls for an eloquent and historic speech addressing the concerns, comparing the contrasting views, and reconciling the differences between the American people and those filthy, drunken, inbred upside-downers.

Our differences are vast, and the healing will be difficult. But if those primitive, leather-skinned, kangaroo-riding outbackers can do it, I'm sure we can too.

I keed. Some of my best friends wear fedoras!
posted by Rhaomi at 8:41 PM on March 18, 2008


I seem to have made a spelling mistake, but I'm American, so the reason should be obvious.
posted by StrikeTheViol at 8:42 PM on March 18, 2008


I guess I'm saying I think it's a pretty broad brush to say that no national stereotype or cultural stereotype humor can ever be funny, no matter what.

Goshling's allusion to national stereotypes aside, it wasn't stereotype-humour that was called out. It was the dismissal of (largely) non-UK and non-US things.

"Drunk-ass drongos" vs. "Meh, Australia"
"Hockey-loving tuquemonkeys" vs. "Meh, Canada"
Etc.
posted by CKmtl at 8:49 PM on March 18, 2008


MLIS - wasn't aware there was anything worth being productive and helpful about in this here thread. Last time I checked getting indignant over a silly comment that you imagine maligns an entire continent of varied peoples makes one quite the dipshit. At the very least, I gotta seriously wonder how such a person copes with what really passes for stresses in this life.

In my pants.
posted by docpops at 8:51 PM on March 18, 2008 [5 favorites]


It's not OK to dismiss an entire country

Unless it's the U.S., in which case it is OK.

if you are wondering why there are fewer posts recently about China or Korea for example it's due to the same dismissing attitude.

You're telepathic?
posted by oaf at 8:54 PM on March 18, 2008 [1 favorite]


"Texas has most town names covered, actually, so it doesn't count"

I've always been partial to Bug Tussle, myself.

Aussies, please ignore any negativity here. The land that spawned the Hoodoo Gurus can never be anything but holy ground. Seriously, I always read the posts about Australia.
posted by batgrlHG at 9:02 PM on March 18, 2008


In a recent thread about city dwellers moving to the country to live off the land the first brilliant comment was a link to dueling banjos on youtube. We've never heard that joke, right? But it stayed. And the same member that posted that drivel was upset today because obama's unifying speech wasn't posted on the blue.

I ROCK!

Though technically I was not complaining, I was pushing an issue that was already under discussion onto metatalk.

Also the entire middle of America IS a hellhole full of inbred hillbillies*. I went there once.

* Australia too, from what I've seen in movies. Apart form the bits with the aborigines in, which are "mystical".
posted by Artw at 9:05 PM on March 18, 2008


At least Australia isn't a state who's unofficial motto is a threat.
posted by carsonb at 9:10 PM on March 18, 2008 [3 favorites]


Why you . . . you . . . you . . . ANTI-ANTIPODEAN RATBASTARDS!

In other news, Nick Cave.
posted by FelliniBlank at 9:11 PM on March 18, 2008


That's New Zealand.
posted by Artw at 9:12 PM on March 18, 2008


You know what country really sucks? Liechtenstein. I think we should mock those ...

*looks up Liechtenstein's official site*

... colloquial Alemannic-dialected German-speaking Swiss-franc-spending asshats.

Cripes, their entire history fits on a single 131kb .PDF, for fuck's sake!

Wankers.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 9:12 PM on March 18, 2008 [2 favorites]


Surely that linked comment is not the one this callout is about? Surely not? I know you said that is an example of various comments but, if it is representative, it is so harmless and puny that your callout would cause more offence to Australians, by implying that they can't stand to have the piss taken out of them.

Sheesh.
posted by dg at 9:14 PM on March 18, 2008


Gomichild, I was all set to agree with you until I remembered I live in Los Angeles which is in California, which is in the United States, all three of which are regularly slagged off with one-liners. So instead I'll say; suck it up and deal.
posted by Justinian at 9:20 PM on March 18, 2008 [1 favorite]


BTW, do we not still have posts about both China and Korea on the front page?
posted by Artw at 9:21 PM on March 18, 2008


Well with some of the reactions from some of you here even though I aired an issue I had in a reasonable fashion, and one that has been discussed extensively outside of metatalk before I even brought it here (which would not be telepathy but other mediums such as mail and irc for example) you'd think that I had personally gone over to your place raped your dog and pissed in your cornflakes.

The message is clear - it was about respecting posts which were based in other countries. Obviously it is not one comment as such but several that have come up over time. In fact it's painful to have to point this out for the third time in the same thread.
posted by gomichild at 9:38 PM on March 18, 2008


Uh, what?
posted by booticon at 9:43 PM on March 18, 2008


Although I'm a Canadian, I find the Aussie political threads really interesting, but invariably some goof will ask "why is this (an Aussie political thread) interesting/important?"

So I agree with gomichild (whom, I might add, is as reasonable and rational a MeFite as there could ever be, a veritable poster-child for the superior qualities of the Hive Mind... So I take this callout very seriously indeed).

I also agree with gomi's Korea-China observations. I would like to post more about Japan, but don,t, because I know it'll be dismissed as "fuckingcrazyjapfilter" on this site, and who wants that?
posted by KokuRyu at 9:46 PM on March 18, 2008


gomichild: "The message is clear - it was about respecting posts which were based in other countries. Obviously it is not one comment as such but several that have come up over time. In fact it's painful to have to point this out for the third time in the same thread."

No, we got that. Assuming that the comment you linked to was representative of the other comments you are concerned about, your callout is weak. If the other comments are significantly nastier, you should have linked them instead.
posted by dg at 9:47 PM on March 18, 2008


So, this Australian walks into a bar.

And that's about it. No one remembers himm ever leaving after that, except for that one time when he drank all the beer in the place and offered to go get a whole three pallets more with their ute.

He came back with a six-car land train full of ridiculously dodgy, cheap beer, six drag queens, a troupe of camels, a box of ancient B-movie film prints and what appeared to be a functioning SCUD missle on a trailer, painted pink.

And a suspicious amount of Kangaroo Jerky.

At least, I think he was a he. Never saw him shave, now that I reckon.
posted by loquacious at 9:48 PM on March 18, 2008 [1 favorite]


I also agree with gomi's Korea-China observations. I would like to post more about Japan, but don,t, because I know it'll be dismissed as "fuckingcrazyjapfilter" on this site, and who wants that?

You've got to be kidding me, the both of you. If there are any two countries other than America that Metafilter has a collective (forgive me, non-penis-having MeFites) hard-on for, and for which there exists more goodwill and, in the case of Japan, slightly creepy fascination, those two have got to be Australia and Japan.

This thread is just weird and puzzling.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 9:51 PM on March 18, 2008 [4 favorites]


I am going to import this joke from two threads ago since people there weren't having any:

Annex Canada? Wouldn't that be like sewing your hat on?
posted by nicwolff at 9:51 PM on March 18, 2008 [3 favorites]


It's not OK to dismiss an entire country

I disagree.
posted by UbuRoivas at 9:52 PM on March 18, 2008


I don't care about people being dismissive about us. They can ignore Australia as much as they like. We're still going to take over the world some day, whether we get to discuss it on Metafilter first or not.
posted by Jimbob at 9:52 PM on March 18, 2008


(Disclaimer: Japan disturbs and frightens me, but I love Australia something fierce. And you'll never ever get me to stop making jokes about either of them. Unfunny jokes included.)
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 9:53 PM on March 18, 2008


You shouldn't diss a country that gave us the governator of California.
posted by blue_beetle at 9:56 PM on March 18, 2008 [2 favorites]


Weirdest callout evar.
posted by mrnutty at 9:59 PM on March 18, 2008


"Japan disturbs and frightens me" is kinda the sorta comments I'm referring to, stavros.

CAN'T WE AL DRINK A COKE AND SING IN HARMONY?

Anyway, I don't think MeFites will ever understand Korea, what with its reliance on IE and ActiveX.
posted by KokuRyu at 10:01 PM on March 18, 2008


Two words. Fan death.
posted by Jimbob at 10:06 PM on March 18, 2008


We're still going to take over the world some day

Why on earth would we want to leave Paradise?!??

Oh, I forgot. You're in Darwin.
posted by UbuRoivas at 10:09 PM on March 18, 2008


"Japan disturbs and frightens me" is kinda the sorta comments I'm referring to, stavros.

Yes, well, it's the same kind of comment I was talking about, too. You know, a joke.

Anyway, I don't think MeFites will ever understand Korea, what with its reliance on IE and ActiveX.

Ironically and amusing, it is a MeFite and all-around swell Japanese fella, Gen Kanai, who has done more than anyone else I know to address that, actually.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:10 PM on March 18, 2008


+ly
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:11 PM on March 18, 2008


Weakest call out ever. Mefimail will solve all your problems. Apply thrice daily to the effected region.

I thought there was some real drama in this thread :(
posted by chrisbucks at 10:11 PM on March 18, 2008


Yeah, the "crazy japs amirite" comments bother me too (as someone from a country whose members are required by law to hate Japan *rolls eyes*), but I don't really see how that's necessarily relevant to this thread. The comment linked really only scores a 2 on the vitriol scale. *shrug*
posted by Phire at 10:17 PM on March 18, 2008


To what Kokuryu is saying...

I'm going to have to chime in that I've had friends from Japan who do think all positive attention isn't exactly positive. It might come from a place of genuine affection, but just as how Americans might be annoyed by all foreigners thinking that Americans are gun-toting assholes and that Hollywood movies are just like how the States are, not all Japanese people like being equated to the crazy and kooky things people attribute to the country, true or not. Unfortunately, sometimes it's a really thin line between marveling at differences and exoticizing. I had one friend who was hounded by a anime-loving acquaintance of ours because obviously because he's Japanese he knew ALL about anime! I mean, he watched cartoons as a kid, sure, but at that point in his life he was more about playing the bass and soccer. Sounds like a minor misunderstanding, but the thing is, to the person saying it, it's just a one of joke or something, but to the person hearing it they might've heard it a million times already and it just wears you down and you get a bit jaded and annoyed.

I don't know, like let's pick an example like schoolgirl uniforms. If you heard foreigners saying, "Hey, what is UP with the schoolgirl uniforms," whenever they wanted to talk to you about Japan, to each foreigner who says that it's the first time they're bringing it up to you, but you have to hear it all the time. You're going to get to the point where you just feel like saying, "I don't KNOW, man. It's not MY thing. A lot of schools here have uniforms! That's just how it is! I wore one, my parents wore one. What do you want me to say? Obviously wearing uniforms means they're in school which means they're younger and some dudes are just into young girls! What about you guys?? What's up with cheerleader uniforms? what's up with that? What's up with that, huh??"

As for the comments of "Suck it up! [My country of origin/culture] gets ragged on all the time too!" I guess I don't get that, since if you know how frustrating it is to be dealt that way, what's the point in treating other people's countries and cultures in the same manner?
posted by kkokkodalk at 10:28 PM on March 18, 2008 [6 favorites]


Oh give me a break. It was a joke on the blue. If it was on the green, you might have something to bitch about. But this is just idiotic. I could make about 2000 MeTa posts about stuff I've seen on the blue that offended me in the last year alone. Grow up.
posted by allkindsoftime at 10:29 PM on March 18, 2008 [1 favorite]


Evar. Word.

Damn you Jimbob, giving away our plans like that! See, that's why the Kiwis were put in charge of the whole world domination plan - you damn aussies just can't keep your mouths shut! Now we'll have to speed up the whole "moving the entire population of NZ to the West Island" thing.
posted by dg at 10:42 PM on March 18, 2008


Don't trust 'em!

They're just making a play for our Merinos!
posted by UbuRoivas at 10:46 PM on March 18, 2008 [1 favorite]


It was a stupid joke worthy of a 14 year old. So in that respect not a big deal.

On the other hand it reminds me of 'jokes' here on mefi about french or germans by people who've never met a frenchman or german let alone been there. Generally these jokes are the equivalent of 'you stupid gun-toting flag-waving uncultured americans' utterances directed at americans.
It betrays not only a lack of knowledge but also a lack of being able to realise your lack of knowledge. The stupdity irks me.
posted by jouke at 10:55 PM on March 18, 2008 [1 favorite]


How many bitchfests have people had over folks messing with Texas? Or MeTas about how it's wrong to tar all Yanks with the "Ammurrican" brush? gomichild has a legitimate point and the level of vitriol being tossed her way here is disheartening.

I could make about 2000 MeTa posts about stuff I've seen on the blue that offended me in the last year alone.

I'm pretty sure you have.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 11:08 PM on March 18, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'll note that while I've made Oz jokes, I also asked this askMefi (which, whoops, contains an Australia-stereotype joke in its title).
posted by orthogonality at 11:24 PM on March 18, 2008


Another day, another lame MeTa, another lame comment complaining, wash, rinse, repeat, HERE'S SOMETHING ABOUT CANADA
posted by dhammond at 11:26 PM on March 18, 2008


kkokkodalk writes "I don't know, like let's pick an example like schoolgirl uniforms. If you heard foreigners saying, 'Hey, what is UP with the schoolgirl uniforms,' whenever they wanted to talk to you about Japan, to each foreigner who says that it's the first time they're bringing it up to you, but you have to hear it all the time. "

Look, it beats opening the conversation with "so, I was watching The Bridge on the River Kwai, and uh, what was up with that Rape of Nanking and that Bataan Death March, huh?"

Oh, and as a German-American,

goshling writes "Jokes are jokes, but some comments are too tedious and unfunny, such as using an attempt at a one liner to categorise an entire nation, whether it be about ... frog marching Germans...."

As a German-American, I completely support this. Mention obsessive punctuality and "The N-S War" too.
posted by orthogonality at 11:30 PM on March 18, 2008


Another day, another lame MeTa, another lame comment complaining, wash, rinse, repeat, HERE'S SOMETHING ABOUT CANADA

HEY DID YOU JUST MAKE A JOKE ABOOT CANADA WHY I OUGHTA PUNCH YOU RIGHT IN THE HEALTHCARE SYSTEM
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 11:32 PM on March 18, 2008 [3 favorites]


I, for one, cannot stomach anyone taking the piss out of Australians in threads. Which is why I came down under in order to do it to their faces.

... and frankly, they kinda seem to like it.
posted by barnacles at 12:17 AM on March 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


nd the freaking town they named Alice! Now who goes naming a town Alice?!?

Who the fuck is Alice?
posted by atrazine at 3:16 AM on March 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


I have no idea who Alice is, but I wouldn't mind meeting her.

Apparently, she springs like a slinky, if you rorke my drift...
posted by UbuRoivas at 3:52 AM on March 19, 2008


stavrosthewonderchicken writes "HEY DID YOU JUST MAKE A JOKE ABOOT CANADA WHY I OUGHTA PUNCH YOU RIGHT IN THE HEALTHCARE SYSTEM"

At least the greenback is now worth less than the loonie so no more lame ass "jokes" about the us:canada exchange rate being similiar to the dollar:yen rate. I've waited my whole life for this.
posted by Mitheral at 4:14 AM on March 19, 2008


Oh give me a break. It was a joke on the blue.

Actually it was just another lame, knee-jerk cliché, unsuccessful fave whoring moment of noise. Not so much as a scintilla of effort was invested into making it smart or memorable. I'm not offended that you were referencing Australia with that limp shtick; I'm just amazed that you would in any way think that it was a positive or useful or actually humorous contribution to the site.
To that extent it is representative of a large body of tired and worn out phrases that people trot out here every day, either out of laziness or in the misguided belief that they are demonstrating that they are part of the in-house group dynamic. But I don't think you are particularly any more guilty or worthy of derision than the next person. So I pull down my pants and waggle my bottom at all lazy commenters.
posted by peacay at 4:19 AM on March 19, 2008 [3 favorites]


But Australia is so much fun to diss, with the kangaroos and the koalas and the Croc Hunter guy and the massive beer cans and the funny looking opera house and the bald guy from Midnight Oil and Nicole Kidman and Mel Freaking Gibson and the shrimps and the barbies and the 'land of outlaws' and the accents and Huge Assman or whatever his name is and the freaking town they named Alice! Now who goes naming a town Alice?!?

wendell you gotta be a travel writer.
posted by mattoxic at 4:21 AM on March 19, 2008


Maybe hate isn't so boring after all.
posted by Dizzy at 4:44 AM on March 19, 2008


I pull down my pants and waggle my bottom at peacay.
posted by UbuRoivas at 5:24 AM on March 19, 2008


Is there really anyone else feeling this way?

At times, yes. Let's just say that hurf-durf wisecracks about Texas, Italy, and women all rate about the same on the Offensively Irritating Meter. But jouke says it better than I.
posted by romakimmy at 5:25 AM on March 19, 2008


also:

MetaFilter: just another lame, knee-jerk cliché

MetaFilter: unsuccessful fave whoring moment of noise

MetaFilter: Not so much as a scintilla of effort

MetaFilter: that limp shtick

MetaFilter: I'm just amazed that you would in any way think that it was a positive or useful or actually humorous contribution

&c.

[NOT BOTTOM-WAGGLIST]
posted by UbuRoivas at 5:36 AM on March 19, 2008


As long as the anti-$PLACE snark is funny it trumps tiresome. It's arguable whether ironic comic timing constitutes funny of course.
posted by Skorgu at 5:54 AM on March 19, 2008


You forgot baby eating dingos, sir. - Burhanistan

Babies will eat damn near anything left lying around, but your story of a baby eating dingos (dingoes?) strains credulity. STRAINS CREDULITY, I SAY!
posted by Mister_A at 6:43 AM on March 19, 2008


This thread is just weird and puzzling.

Yup. I finish the thread as puzzled as I was when I started it. But at least now I know to make fun of Darwin.
posted by languagehat at 6:46 AM on March 19, 2008


The Easybeats were Aussies, and Friday On My Mind was a cool song.

That is all.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:46 AM on March 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


All you fuckers bandying about "vitriol" need to go read Brighton Rock again.

Dynamic work is often destroyed by the performer reaching the peak too early and discovering that there's nowhere left to climb. Good stage or screen writing is often rendered one-dimensional by this kind of acting, marked by a shouty, overwrought delivery completely lacking in nuance. Music that, in the hands of an early-peaking performer, crescendos early and leaves the stops pulled for the duration, is static and uninspiring.

Vitriol is a seriously, seriously nasty business. It's like spitting in your mother's face or kicking your dog, only worse. Vitriol is rarely flung here. Using the word "vitriol" to mean "failed joke" or "snide aside" is to peak early and disappear into your own holler.

So read that Graham Greene to learn what vitriol is, and maybe read Peter Brook's The Empty Space to get some nuance into your performance.

Otherwise your vitriol is pretty weak sauce.
posted by breezeway at 7:14 AM on March 19, 2008 [3 favorites]


This post is brought to you by the town of Mehlville.
posted by grateful at 7:16 AM on March 19, 2008


Whenever I meet a Georgian I ask them what sort of pansy-assed knight goes around draped in a panther's skin instead of proper armor. Also why they have those Eyetie sounding names when they're supposedly Russians. I bet they get that all the time though, so maybe I oughta knock it off.
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 7:21 AM on March 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


Alvy Ampersand said: "How many bitchfests have people had over folks messing with Texas? Or MeTas about how it's wrong to tar all Yanks with the "Ammurrican" brush? gomichild has a legitimate point and the level of vitriol being tossed her way here is disheartening.

Agreed, and as someone who got on the cross about the Texas-bashing a while back, I think it's important to clarify that I don't disagree with gomichild's callout. I disagreed with goshling's claim that no cultural humor can ever be funny, no matter what (as CKmtl pointed out).

And I agree that dismissing as "meh, who cares, not important" is no good.

peacay's comment expressed my thoughts better: people need to just stop being lazy and unfunny and going for the quick-noise when the thoughtful-clever is considered far superior and is actually available.

(Well, maybe not to some of you.)
posted by pineapple at 7:36 AM on March 19, 2008


I am in complete agreement with your assertions, breezeway.
I just don't understand what you're responding to.
Please help me with context?
posted by Dizzy at 7:38 AM on March 19, 2008


Australia: where women glow and men plunder!
posted by ericb at 7:46 AM on March 19, 2008


It's "thunder."
posted by 1 at 7:53 AM on March 19, 2008


Oh shit, nm, my bad. It's plunder. Whatever, I get a free pass because I'm moving there in a couple of months.
posted by 1 at 7:55 AM on March 19, 2008


Yo Dizzy, by bizarre co-inky-dink, the instance of "vitriol" in this thread got quoted right below my comment, though it's really a cumulative thing over many years of threads. Maybe I shoulda started a MeTa on it, but it seems pretty minor in retrospect.

It's no better than Godwinning, though, in effect shouting "fire" when someone lights a cigarette. It's bad form, and it detracts from cogent, reasonable thought.
posted by breezeway at 7:56 AM on March 19, 2008


Oh, and, yeah, on topic: Americans are totally America-centric and generally ignorant of the world around them. Surprise surprise. That explains this obnoxious phenomenon, as well as our foreign policy.
posted by 1 at 7:59 AM on March 19, 2008


I've always been partial to Bug Tussle, myself.

I'm fond of Sugar Tit. Nipple Avenue is lovely.
posted by octobersurprise at 8:08 AM on March 19, 2008


Isn't Fucking in Australia?
posted by Mister_A at 8:10 AM on March 19, 2008


"Isn't Fucking in Australia?"

Isn't fucking in Australia what?
posted by mr_crash_davis at 8:41 AM on March 19, 2008


""Japan disturbs and frightens me" is kinda the sorta comments I'm referring to, stavros. "

I'm sorry, if you can't take that level of thin snark, you really shouldn't be posting.
posted by klangklangston at 8:45 AM on March 19, 2008


All you fuckers bandying about "vitriol" need to go read Brighton Rock again.

Actually I was the only one. Feel free to change it to "caustic jerkiness" or "abrasive dismissiveness" after you get finished sticking the collected works of Graham Greene up your ass. Everyone's jumping on the fact that the example gomichild linked to was pretty mild. But in a lot of Aussie-related FPPs, there's always some pandering knob who trots out the same lame joke. I don't think allkindsoftime's comment was the straw that broke the camel's back so much as an example of a consistent and lame level of noise that pollutes threads, whether they be about Australia, Texas, Japan, or the American South.

I'm sorry, if you can't take that level of thin snark, you really shouldn't be posting.

Is anyone saying it reduces them to tears, klang? No, they're saying it's irritating and unfunny, in much the same way that "I'd hit it." is.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 9:18 AM on March 19, 2008


It's "thunder."

Oh shit, nm, my bad. It's plunder. Whatever, I get a free pass because I'm moving there in a couple of months.

No, it's "chunder" as in Aussie slang for "to vomit".

Oh, and, yeah, on topic: Americans are totally America-centric and generally ignorant of the world around them. Surprise surprise. That explains this obnoxious phenomenon, as well as our foreign policy.

Priceless.
posted by mlis at 10:01 AM on March 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


gomichild: The message is clear - it was about respecting posts which were based in other countries.

With all due respect, gomichild, I think it's worth repeating the old FidoNet rules:

1. Don't be offensive.
2. Don't be easily offended.
posted by russilwvong at 10:09 AM on March 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


Isn't Fucking in Australia?

Austria, dude.
posted by oneirodynia at 10:31 AM on March 19, 2008


I was just talking about the word "vitriol," Ampersand. And I explained in a subsequent comment that my problem with the inappropriate use of "vitriol" was, like your problem with dismissal of Australia, was cumulative over many threads and many users. I'm sure you read it.

I understand why you take it so personally and get so wildly bent out of shape over my pointing out how damaging your inappropriate word choice is to your otherwise reasonable discourse. It's why you used "vitriol" in the first place: you have a volume switch, not a volume knob. You really should get that fixed.
posted by breezeway at 10:44 AM on March 19, 2008


I understand why you take it so personally and get so wildly bent out of shape over my pointing out how damaging your inappropriate word choice is to your otherwise reasonable discourse.

I'm not sure you do - I'm smart enough to know that I'm not smart enough to have any sort of intellectual vanity. It was more a reaction to being called a fucker before I even had my first cigarette of the day, and I'm having trouble understanding how reacting to being called a fucker with an 'Up yours, buddy' is getting "so wildly bent out of shape". But project away, if it makes you happy.

While many of the dismissive responses gomichild received were rude, condescending, and caustic, I doubt they melted her face off. However, the rush to ignore a legitimate issue in favour of being a dick engenders an destructive atmosphere of personal attacks and gratuitous nastiness that used to permeate MeTa and severely impaired it's usefulness. It'd be a shame for this place to degenerate back into that cesspool of acidity (I'll cop to my complicity in that now, to save folks the trouble of furthering this derail with pot and kettle accusations).

It's why you used "vitriol" in the first place: you have a volume switch, not a volume knob. You really should get that fixed.
"My god! It's like you've known me all my life!"
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 11:42 AM on March 19, 2008


I'm sorry, Alvy Ampersand. I didn't even realize I'd called you a fucker (though I clearly did; my bad). Fair's fair. I gotta say, though, Graham Greene wrote a lot of books. Maybe I could just stick to the Entertainments.

Like I said, I thought about a separate MeTa on "vitriol" to keep it general and to not target individuals, but I figured that would end even more poorly than this.

Sorry for insulting you. I still think "vitriol" is a ridiculous characterization that destroys necessary nuance, but at least now I realize my role in pissing you off. Really bad form on my part.

I agree that this place could use less dickishness, and I know exactly where to start.
posted by breezeway at 12:09 PM on March 19, 2008


No harm, no foul. I can see where you're coming from - now I'm noticing usages of "vitriol" all over my Recent Activity page.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 12:37 PM on March 19, 2008


Women throw & men chunder.
posted by UbuRoivas at 1:12 PM on March 19, 2008


Heh vegemite, amirite?
posted by Mister_A at 1:20 PM on March 19, 2008


Mister_A: "Isn't Fucking in Australia?"
... just like Fucking everywhere else, except upside-down?
posted by dg at 1:20 PM on March 19, 2008


Oh give me a break. It was a joke on the blue. If it was on the green, you might have something to bitch about. But this is just idiotic. I could make about 2000 MeTa posts about stuff I've seen on the blue that offended me in the last year alone. Grow up.

Well, that's mature.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 2:03 PM on March 19, 2008 [2 favorites]


I really found allkindsoftime's comment to be simple good-natured teasing in the spirit of international friendship. I fully support allkindsoftime in making her/his/its good natured, good humoured comment, and I vote that this callout is LAME. In the words of Derryn Hinch, it is LAME, AUSTRALIA: LAME.

The idea that allkindsoftime is "dismissing" some incredibly important "issue" is pure fantasy, as far as I'm concerned. The discussion seems to have been affected not one iota by allkindsoftime's remark. With the greatest possible respect to Gomichild, dressing this thread up as some kind of plea for tolerance between all the peoples of the world strikes me as bizarre. That may well be an issue for all of us here at MeFi, but allkindsoftime's comment has precisely nothing to do with it. Plus, allkindsoftime IS actually an Australian and everyone knows that Australians are all drooling halfwits.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 2:48 PM on March 19, 2008


Personally, I think Men At Work were underrated. That first album was surprisingly good, even if it was written off as a one hit wonder.
posted by vronsky at 2:50 PM on March 19, 2008


dismissing an issue because it's outside of the US or the UK?

I thought we dismissed the UK as well around here; someone should get on that.
posted by BrotherCaine at 4:58 PM on March 19, 2008


Nah, then all the poms would start whingeing.
posted by UbuRoivas at 5:17 PM on March 19, 2008


Heh, like they need an excuse.
posted by dg at 5:53 PM on March 19, 2008


everyone knows that Australians are all drooling halfwits.

When you're at a concert by an Australian band, how do you tell if the Australian drummer's drum riser is level?

The Australian drummer drools from both sides of his Australian mouth.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:05 PM on March 19, 2008


Australian drummer jokes... I got a million of 'em!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:06 PM on March 19, 2008


Is that a metric million or an imperial one?
posted by UbuRoivas at 6:15 PM on March 19, 2008


Well, that's mature.

Guilty as charged. Not sure that most people will read this, but, for what its worth...

I'd like to rescind my rather scathing first comment in this thread. I by no means ask your collective forgiveness for my original joke that spawned this (I still think it was all in good fun), but implying that the OP of this call-out was idiotic or needed to grow up was rather crass on my part, and I can hold myself to better standards than that, usually.

So, gomichild, please accept my sincere apology for that response to your call-out.

And I'd further like to point out to the community at large that I'm more than a little ashamed of the laziness and more importantly arrogance that I displayed in linking back to something that I had already written. As was kindly pointed out to me, if something needs to be said, I should take the time to say it, rather than flippantly linking back to it. That was in bad form, and in the future I'll be careful not to do that.

And this actually spawns one more idea: I think I've demonstrated herein that I'm not perfect. But I do consider myself a Christian. But I do screw up sometimes. But I still am a Christian. See where I'm going? While the insanity of the Hillsong position upsets me, yes, I still have to approach it from the perspective that while I may have some view-points in my life worked out a little better than others, I'm not approaching anyone else from the platform of actually being better than them.

I think this is the reason a lot of people hate Christians so much, because most of us come across as though we do think we are better than other people. Probably a lot of us actually believe that we are, sadly enough. But then, of course, its not just Christians that do that.

Anyway, as mentioned in the orig thread on the blue, I appreciate people being called to the carpet, be they Christian or of any other faith. Even when its myself, and its uncomfortable. So, thanks.
posted by allkindsoftime at 6:17 PM on March 19, 2008


Is that a metric million or an imperial one?

That's an AMERICAN million, you kangaroo-eatin', opera-house havin', alligator-wrestlin' ancestor of a penal colony inmate!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:02 PM on March 19, 2008


That's the same as a Canadian million, right?

Oh, wait - it's only around 900,000 Canadian now.
posted by UbuRoivas at 8:12 PM on March 19, 2008


And how do you know my descendant is going to be sent to a penal colony? Other than the fact that being a rugged, devil-may-care outlaw is in my blood?
posted by UbuRoivas at 8:15 PM on March 19, 2008


UbuRoivas: "That's the same as a Canadian million, right?
Oh, wait - it's only around 900,000 Canadian now.
"

It's not far off the same as an Australian million these days. How the mighty have fallen ...
posted by dg at 8:32 PM on March 19, 2008


And how do you know my descendant is going to be sent to a penal colony?

Leonard Cohen said it best:

"I have seen the future, it is murder..."
posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:33 PM on March 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


Basically, I think all threads should turn into discussions on Leonard Cohen.

Or at least link to him.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:35 PM on March 19, 2008


When Leonard Cohen first read his poetry to Philip Glass, there were times when the composer was beside himself with laughter.
posted by UbuRoivas at 9:12 PM on March 19, 2008


...beside himself with laughter.

No surprise there! I find some of Cohen's songs quite funny as well. "Tower of Song", for example, has a number of very funny lines in it.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 10:48 PM on March 19, 2008


Australian. Not offended. Not. Even. Slightly.
posted by obiwanwasabi at 5:24 AM on March 22, 2008


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