Monday, January 18, 2010

How 'Jersey Shore' is going to make me smarter

I spent four years of my life living near the Jersey Shore. Fortunately for me, they were the first four years of my life, so I didn't have a chance to be corrupted by 'The Situation' or fall victim to the charm of Sammi 'Sweetheart' (who, while attractive, has far surpassed the 'not worth it' zone. Why Ronnie puts up with her is beyond me).

Yes, I'm a fan of MTV's Jersey Shore. It's a train wreck of epic proportions. The perfect mix of extreme over-confidence and insecurity. Yes Dear watched for the first time this weekend and doesn't understand the joy I take in watching complete strangers look like idiots. (For that matter, I'm not sure the cast of Jersey Shore realize we're laughing at them. And as an aside, for a summer at the beach, there's an awful lot of fighting taking place.) Suffice to say, after watching, I feel as though I need to do something to replenish the IQ points I lose.

Reading Joyce's Ulysses or Tolstoy's War and Peace would be a waste of my time to attempt reading. I'll be the first to admit I'm not intelligent enough to read them. Hell, I'm not sure I'm intelligent enough to read Chuck Klosterman's Sex, Drugs and Cocco Puffs. But every now and again, I delve into something that gives me the illusion of reading something semi-intelligent. Last year I made it though Baseball and Philosophy (from the Popular Culture and Philosophy series), which tackled such topics 'Baseball and the Search for American Moral Identity' and 'The Ethics of the Intentional Walk' (which are more exciting if you're a baseball fan, trust me.)

So now, I'm set to embark on my next book to make me feel less dumb. This time, I'm going to try another Pop Culture and Society series, this time tackling Seinfeld and Philosophy. Chapter titles include 'Jerry and Socrates: The Examined Life?', 'Seinfeld, Subjectivity and Sartre' and 'Value Ethics and TV's Seinfeld.'

(As I'm writing this, my wife has turned on 'The Bachelor' which she freely admits is stupid.)

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