Pop Culture Mondays/7.27.20

The “Folklore” Edition

Brooke Hammerling
Jul 27, 2020 · 13 min read
Welcome to my brain…

Happy Monday, my pop culture junkies. We are still here and this is the last Monday in July which is like actually WTF. Sure world…make March and April go by slower than molasses but make our summer, the thing we all desperately need, go by faster than ever (sorry Australia, but you get what I am saying right?). NOT cool. Also not cool, those US-based friends of mine who have dual citizenship and are posting their pics from somewhere in the Mediterranean swimming in the clear blue sea through amazing caves and rocky beaches. I SEE YOU and I am ignoring you right now while I listen to Tay Tay’s new album (more on that in a minute) and fantasize about about living in a country that has their shit together — a girl CAN DREAM.

So it was a WEEK you guys. From real highs (hat tip to AOC) to real lows (armed men shooting at protestors, veterans, disabled people, and throwing them in unmarked vans in Portland) but we are here to escape some of the madness and catch up on everything that’s clogging your socials right now… even those black and white Insta photos with the #challengeaccepted hashtag…actually, I will leave it to Instagram as there were a few viral moments this past week, but the latest Instatrend is for women to nominate women in their lives for the #womensupportingwomen challenge by posting a picture of yourself in black and white. I am ALL for women supporting women BUT I am not sure how a black and white SELF portrait does that — but hey that’s me. We post so many pics of ourselves as it is (I AM GUILTY OF THIS X1000) so if it were MY challenge, I would post a pic of ALL the women who inspire me which is a long ass list INCLUDING….Deborah, Dena, Britt, Kristy C., Ceci, Candy, Lyds, Kat, Rovins, Hudack, Grace, Scarlett, Charlotte, Nichelle, JJ, Jordan T. and Jordan H., Stacey, Haley, Heather, Susan H (HAPPY FUCKING BIRTHDAY HUNTER), Frances, Jaqui, Reyna, Chrysi, Niamh, Gina B and Gina H., Jessica M., Annabel, Monica, JB, SWISHA….I mean I could be here all day…And to ALL the other amaze women in my life who have supported me and continue to, I loves you very much.

So with that…for those new subscribers, this is meant to be a weekly fun catch up on all the trends happening or viral sensations or sub-culture shit you may hear about but have no idea what really is happening or what else is being said about it. We are also TRUMP-FREE…as much as humanly possible even though he is at the heart of many many funny pop culture moments (PERSON WOMAN MAN CAMERA TV), I leave it to others to sort thru because I NEED A BREAK FROM THAT “THING”. Enjoy this calorie-free moment in time….

Wonder Woman indeed

AND THAT’S HOW IT’S DONE:

PRE-pandemic, when the world allowed for us to gather in large groups and many of us found ourselves in Austin for SXSW in 2019, I ended up at a small dinner with some brilliant people including Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, AKA AOC, serving New York’s 14th congressional district. She was like a rockstar…I mean there are just SOME people, for better or for worse, who change the energy of a room just by merely being there. Even if you don’t see them, you can feel the energy shift and I cannot explain it but it is that STAR power that is undefinable. I have seen it with Bono, The Obamas, AND AOC. It’s quite a thing to witness, and I am sure on the flip side quite a thing to know you have that impact. And after this dinner, the crowd started thinning out but they weren’t leaving as no one had gone out the front door so I was confused. There was a little upstairs area where this dinner took place, so I made my way up there to find AOC in a living room setting sitting on the carpet, barefoot and cross legged, while every high profile editor and reporter at SXSW at the time sat around in a circle around her looking down from where they sat on sofas and chairs and some sitting on the back of the sofas struggling to hear every word. It was quite a sight…she was ON the floor looking up at each of them and they were all captivated. Mesmerizing.

I don’t always agree with her politics (I can say this for ANY politician so that’s not shocking) but I respect her immensely, and she has a true understanding of her own dynamic. SO, fast forward last week to when a dipshit most of us have never heard of, Rep. Ted Yoho from Florida’s 3rd congressional district, got headline news. SO, ON the the steps of this nation’s CAPITOL, Yoho was SO infuriated by the mere sight of AOC he marched over to her wagging his nasty finger in her face and told her she was “disgusting” and “crazy” and “out of her mind” and “DANGEROUS” among other things. She acknowledged he was being rude and then walked away. He then, within EARSHOT of reporters, called her “a fucking bitch”. CLASSY.

The press went wild and Yoho had to comment on the incident. From the HOUSE FLOOR and it was televised. In his WRITTEN statement, he never apologizes. In fact, he defends his actions by saying he was just passionate for the love of his country and other bullshit and then uses the I HAVE DAUGHTERS AND A WIFE defense, like this means he has all the respect for women. PUHLEASE. SO, AOC then responds to this. She speaks the following day from the House floor and all I can say is, I heard this speech blaring from car speakers as I drove down Sunset Blvd in LA. I heard it as I walked down streets and people were playing it on their phones for friends. I have watched it now 100 times. She speaks with NO script, she eviscerates him…and men like him. If you haven’t watched it, or have only seen a clip, or even if you HAVE watched it a few times — watch it here, watch it again, and again…and again:

Will he resign? I asked the Twitter this and people felt that his constituents in Florida would actually support his behavior so probably not. AND who knows, but people close to him DID react including a Christian organization he was on the Board of who asked him to resign and made a statement about his behavior and actions not aligning with their mission. AND ALL I CAN IS…YASSSSSSSSSSSSS.

TAY TAY!!!

TAYLOR SWIFT DOMINATES:

So, I am not here to review an album. I leave that to the critics and to TikTok. But whether purposely timed or not, while Kanye was having a very public meltdown, again, the young woman he has bullied and tried to railroad along with some of his posse, dropped an album to the surprise of EVERYONE on Friday. And not just any album, an album made during quarantine and a departure from her usual pop-ness and a move into a definitely more mellow, sad, interesting, lush, contemplative mode on an album called “Folklore” including a track with ultimate SAD DAD band, Bon Iver. And full confession…I MAY be a Swifty. I love the pop music I do I do I do…and HOLY SHIT I love this album. I have listened to it non-stop…I am listening to it right now. It just hits a nerve somewhere. AND I am not alone…because news broke LAST night that the album has SOLD 1.3 million copies in 24 hours. First of all, I LITERALLY don’t know how to buy an album these days. Like HOW DO I DO THIS?? I am so confused that there are people who still buy albums but there are apparently a lot of people. I of course listened to it on my BFF AKA Spotify (BFF because Spotify is ALWAYS on in my life whether playing me music or podcasts 24/7 basically) and Spotify announced it had broken the record of first-day album streams by a female artist with 80.6 MILLION streams (that’s not including Apple Music streams. Here is her video for the single “Cardigan” which has already been viewed over 27 million times:

After all the drama with her former manager and the people who bought her OWN music from right under her, this is basically that dream revenge we ALL fantasize about. I mean it’s genius and it’s like OK boys you be you BOO, and I will continue being me and BOOM. MAGIC HAPPENS and she captivates the world.

AT the same time as this album drops, a trend started taking off on TikTok which uses a song from Tay Tay’s pop days, “Love Story” which was remixed to a TikTok song where TikTokkers put their phone on something that can move backwards (propped on a skateboard, escalator, friend walking backwards, etc.) and then said TikTokker waves at the camera or acts like they are pushing it away and then as the beat picks up in the chorus, they move to the beat as it builds up… (some of the dancer guys do it so well I may have watched a billion times sorry not sorry but i digress…) and we now have a trend. SO if you see people in the middle of the road or a sidewalk or at an escalator or your own kids in your driveway doing this thing YOU NOW KNOW WHAT IT IS…and it’s one trend I find strangely addictive. I have just pulled some TikTok compilations that showcase this for you and WATCH THEM:

So, now we just need AOC to do a TIKTOK with Tay Tay and we are complete.

Strangely addictive…

INDIAN MATCHMAKING:

It seems the creatives at Netflix have just thrown in the towel on naming shows. Like they are in the Board room coming up with reality show ideas and it goes like “Let’s have a show about matchmaking Indian people in India and the US with a Mumbai-based matchmaker and wait for it…let’s call it… ‘INDIAN MATCHMAKING’!!” Same goes for, “Let’s make a show about selling real estate above Sunset Blvd and call it…wait for it… ‘Selling Sunset’!!!”

But I digress.

This matchmaking show was something that popped up on my socials last week so I watched it…all of it…because I am made for this shit. And I will say this is MY opinion but HOLY SHIT this show is nuts and also SORRY NOT SORRY, crap. You can just tell how they edited it to try to make certain women as the villains, and then the boys who really really some of them being the worst, were coddled and fawned over by the Indian matchmaker, aka Auntie. Even though they were disgraceful. It openly discusses people wanting lighter skinned people, richer people, women to stay home in the kitchen, families who just want their kid married at WHATEVER cost there is. I thought initially there was going to be some grand reveal at the end that made a moral statement and showed that this was all some super big troll but in fact NO, it just kept going and hammers home all these stereotypes. I mean, I love showing diversity and multiple cultures, but surely they could have done a better job here? Anyway, I actually think you should watch it and form your own opinion. There is one woman on the show who I STAN hard..she’s an entrepreneur in India and is just so full of love and passion and she calls the Aunties out on their SHIT and is like WAIT WHAT? I am supposed to suppress my awesome to land a dude? NOPE.

These two…

ELON & GRIMES, PART 763:

While it seems to be ALL the rage for couples these days to use the Twitter to have public spats aka Kanye and his wife, I guess I should not be surprised that our patron saint of pop culture, Elon Musk, has jumped onto this trend. Or shall I say, Grimes, his partner, has. For some reason Elon decided to tweet “pronouns suck” — they named their child a gender-neutral name purposely, so it was all confusing as his intent was unclear. So his tweet obviously caught people off guard and people went nuts and GRIMES herself then tweets at him to please shut off his phone or call her but that she cannot condone hate.

She has since deleted the tweet but obviously not before people captured it. ALSO, incidentally the rose by Elon’s name on Twitter is a sarcastic take on this:

SO Elon and Grimes “apparently” unfollowed each other on the socials but I literally cannot prove this because I SO DO NOT CARE enough to try to track this down. Just to say there has not been a week Elon doesn’t make it in the pop culture zeitgeist to some degree, including this whole Johnny Depp/Amber Heard debacle of a court case unfolding in London which is just one salacious detail after another along with some FAB FASHION statements by each party:

But Elon challenging Johnny to a CAGE fight is just what 2020 is all about I think. And THIS interview with Maureen Dowd is flawless…..

AND THESE ARE A FEW OF MY FAVORITE THINGS….

So that’s it July…you tried to break us BUT YOU HAVE NOT! As I have to get back to my real job working with my patient and lovely clients who know I am writing all Monday morning….let me highlight a few things:

  • Simon & Schuster has a book deal with OUR PATRON SAINT OF ALL THINGS, KARA SWISHER. Kara is writing A MEMOIR which if I do not get mentioned in will be a very very dark day for the Swish, I ASSURE YOU. I will retaliate by writing my own memoirs JUST ON KARA. But anyway, MAZEL Swisher. Can’t wait. Please don’t be mean.
  • Twitter has a meme going around that actually annoyed the hell out of me initially. The “I have a joke…” meme that everyone seemed to get in on. But then the QUEEN, Monica Lewinsky broke the Internet and restored my faith in humor:

Until next week, my Pop Culture Junkies. If you have ANY FEEDBACK or suggestions please lmk and as always please share this with EVERYONE!

Anyway, please stay SAFE. Wear 😷 when you are out in public and be kind to one another and LISTEN TO FOLKLORE!!!

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Pop Culture Mondays

Pop Culture Mondays

Pop Culture Mondays

A weekly round up of all the news you’re too embarrassed to admit you don’t know. Or too embarrassed to admit you DO.

Brooke Hammerling

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Talk to me about tech, pop culture, cheese or dogs.

Pop Culture Mondays

A weekly round up of all the news you’re too embarrassed to admit you don’t know. Or too embarrassed to admit you DO.