Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Foggy Contrast with Torque...

Europe is not America. As the US experienced its wild adolescence in the 1960's, beautiful, tired old Europe, envious of the colorful hubbub, finally willing to fess up to its self-strangulation by tradition, ended up with a strange hybrid rebellion of its own. The girls were on motorcycles and the boys were doing Brando impressions in Yves Saint Laurent finery. The students went ape shit. There was a palpable reclamation of the individual, the ego, in the face of crumbling post-war societal doldrums. Strangely, all that colorful psychedelia and hot sex seemed better suited to the gray fogs, peeling palaces, and tree-lined country roads of Europe than the already dopey, sunny Disneyland of California.

Contrary to popular belief, Europe is really the more violent place. Tightly packed, seething with unspoken class struggles, the desperation of preserving an elusive dominance, thriving bands of hooligans and sadists drunk on philosophy and beer and bullfighting. Europeans have never been as dewey-eyed and dualistic about the morality of aggression as we have. Europeans might be repressors, but they are not "erasors" in the Stepford Wives sense. Their culture is too rich, too steeped in blood, to sleep walk through with a smile. America is big enough to push violence into dark corners, hungry enough to exhaust our aggressions in our pursuit of material enlightenment, and morally simplistic enough to divvy all behavior into binary code: Good For Business and Evil.


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