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Volume 3, Number 3
March, 1998

Clever Skippy Icon
Critical Thinking

 Hey kids! Skippy here with you again. Miss me? Of course you did, you pathetic lowlifes. Without my monthly dose of wit and wisdom, your lives would be a horrid, grey blend of desperation and self-loathing. Lucky for you I exist, otherwise you would have to create an imaginary friend. Knowing you as I do, I am quite sure even your imaginary friends would be boring. But that is neither here nor there. I come to you this month to discuss a topic that has been bothering me for quite sometime. A problem of national importance that must be dealt with if we are going to grow as a nation and as a people. That's right folks, I am talking about the Spice Girls.
 I have just returned from seeing SpiceWorld, the Girls' first foray into feature film. I have to ask, just what the hell is wrong with Hollywood and the music industry these days? Why is it that they are incapable of producing more fine quality entertainment like Spiceworld? Why do I always have to sit through long, convoluted and ultimately meaningless drivel like "The English Patient"? (OK, so I didn't actually see "The English Patient", but all of my pretentious friends did, so I know what it was like). Now I know what you are all saying. These girls have no talent, they can't sing, they can't dance, they can't act, etc., etc., etc. Well you know what I have to say about that? Who cares? They're babes, they have a good time and they're songs have a good beat that you can dance to. In other words, lighten up all of you pseudo-intellectual, mental masturbationists that are afraid to admit that you find the Spice Girls entertaining.
 You have all done it, you are in your car (probably something economical and boring, you humorless bastards) and a Spice Girls song comes on the radio. Maybe you don't even know that it is one of their songs at first. You start to tap your foot, you snap your fingers, maybe you even get a little head bobbing action going, in short you start to have a little fun. Then you catch yourself and realize what you are doing. You jab at the radio and find some self important, whiny, fake alternative music and congratulate yourself on your good taste. Well, I have news for you buddy! You don't have good taste, you don't have any taste. You merely ape whatever is considered hip at the moment. Of course you make sure to always jump off before the cultural wave crests, cause you're so cool. But you are still just following the herd. It might be a smaller herd than the rest of society, but it is a herd nonetheless.
 Personally I am sick to death of music stars and actors who have deluded themselves into thinking what they do has any importance whatsoever. I think it all started with the baby-boomers (as most foul trends do these days). First they thought that their music helped end the Vietnam War by raising people's consciousness. Sorry folks, but it was a bunch college-age kids who didn't want to be drafted that ended the Vietnam War, and they would have done it with or without a soundtrack. Then they caused an uproar when one of these selfsame protest songs was used to sell sneakers. Sorry again kids, but most of you sold out long before the Beatles did. Face it troops, musicians and actors are just trained seals who exist for our amusement. When they cease to amuse us, it doesn't matter what or who they believe in or what cause they fight for, we move on to the next one. The Spice Girls know this, that is why they spend their time singing and dancing and enjoying the gift that a fickle public has bestowed upon them.
 When did it happen that a star had to be a certified navel gazer before we could enjoy them? When did we become so insecure as a society that we can't simply enjoy a group like the Spice Girls for what they are? Five attractive girls who cavort about in skimpy outfits to a pounding beat. What do I care if their music is going to withstand the test of time? All I know is that when I am driving in my car and one of their tunes comes on the radio, my mood lightens a little. That's really all I ask for from music or movies or television. I don't need entertainment that makes me think, the world makes me think on a daily basis. Can't you people get depressed enough watching the news or reading the paper? Do you really need entertainment that depresses you as well?
 Don't get me wrong kids. I enjoy quality entertainment as much as anybody. I listen to critically acclaimed bands like REM, Pearl Jam and even the Beatles. I loved "Schindler's List" and "Richard III". It's just that I refuse to be coerced into hating a band simply because they don't pass some intellectual litmus test. I am not so insecure that I worry what people will think of me if I admit to liking the Spice Girls or "Cabin Boy" (a fine film starring Chris Elliot, for all you philistines). Have a little self-confidence folks, stand up for your likes and dislikes. If you like the Spice Girls, then play them really loud at the office. If you love Cheech and Chong movies, invite your boss over for a film festival. In short, don't let society or the cool people or anyone tell you what you can and cannot enjoy. Except for me, I can tell you what you should or shouldn't enjoy, but that's only because I'm smarter than you.

signed, Skippy
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