Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Gross Emo Expat Rant.

Lately, I've been thinking that the world is ending. On some level, I believe this. I believe at least that the world as I know it, chockful of superfluous sitcoms, self-induced life melodrama and oblivious egocentrism is over. In a way, I am America.
Do you want to know what I think the biggest difference between Europeans and Americans is? It's not creative hygeine or an overabundance of pork products. I think it's that American ideology is so entrenched in isolationism that it borders on Courtney Love crazy.
Which I love and hate at the same time. We are awesome and have things like Sonic and the Great Plains (which I think are on par btw). But, Europeans are much more well-versed about us than we are about them. It's a rather obvious statement, I know.
Europeans were incredibly invested in our election, but do most people know who the chancellor of Germany is? Or that Belgium has the longest highway (as compared to the size of the country) in the world? Or that Greece has the greatest number of smokers in terms of it's population? Or that Luxembourg leads the world in equine-sex related casualties?
Jk on that last one. Or am I? How would you know? These people were and are our allies, and we ignore them like the girl who wears press-on cat t-shirts to school. Hmmm, maybe I'm Europe actually.
Why don't we know this shit? Why are most Europeans fluent in multiple languages while Americans lead the world in retardo text-message dialogue? Idk.
Oh god, I'm aware this sounds so "I'm an expat living in Europe and I smoke Gauloises and eat unpasteurized yogurt" preachy, but it's true goddamit. And I also know that a lot of this has to do with simple geography, but still. And I know my man Barack has made a pledge of multilateralism, but living here, I am struck by this realization constantly. And I'm kind of mad about the way I was educated.
I admire Europe's cooperative and informed political sense *gross generalization, and I admire even more education systems with global priorities.
At the same time, I miss and think I better understand the ambition that comes with America's self-insistence. The American dream, man. That's the difference. A national lack of impulse-control that drives us to gamble on success. I think I love it...but it's kind of gross. And maybe, truly, over? At least the incarnation that once was?
I've been thinking about art fairs as symptomatic of a bloated, overfed economy. And now? Now nothing, there's the itchiness without the pox to make it matter.
I guess I'm writing about this because I feel both happy and sad about the fat, ailing blind man that is America. Or me.
Or Orson Welles.

1 comment:

Axel said...

Enculturation is like crack addiction and you're having withdrawals. You need to go out and buy something you don't need.