Thank Grog It’s Firday!
Wow. What a week. Trials, and finger pointing, and loss of righteousness…and that’s just what happened in our little world of TSTO! I love the fact that TSTO is always here, as a distraction from the insanity of the “real world.”
But sometimes, it seems that the “real world” encroaches on our “happy place,” and we end up “losing our shirt” over something someone says or does.
This has been one of those weeks. And, man…did it make me feel old and tired.
First, the loss of “righteousness.” As I have written about before, the “loss of righteousness carries a perceived slight, that isn’t really a big deal at all. I’m talking about what happens when your neighbors tag (El Barto) you to the point of “losing a couple of stars.”
I’m not going to go into this again…but, the fact is, you barely lose anything real (barely 1%), and it comes back on its own in a day or three, with no effort on your behalf. No walls…no freaking out…they just come back.
As these two screen shots prove… I lost less than a single digit of XP boosting. A Low” of 1,298.15% (which still makes donut farming a breeze) back to 1,298. 65%….
A net difference of .5%…big…damn…woop!
It is the “perceived slight” part that makes people nuts. “Less Righteous??? Meeeeeeeeee????? That is so not true!!!!” Which of course is exactly the kind of whiny, self-involved, self-important kind of behavior that would actually make it clear that your righteousness is lacking in the real world.
But, let’s celebrate this!! For the most part, EA has mostly fixed the neighbor problem. And even if they haven’t fixed it all of the way, they have still made it possible of those of us who love tagging, to do so. It has been reported, discovered, and tested, that even if there isn’t a “Spray Can” hovering over one of the “tag worthy buildings,” you can still tap the building, and tagging will take place. I’ve tried it. It works swell! And apparently, my neighbors have discovered this as well, as I found myself in a “less than righteous” state this week.
Righteousness is such an odd thing. The more you think you are worthy of it, the less you actually are. In other words, making oneself “self righteous” is actually darn near the exact opposite of what it means to be righteous.
The definition, according to Oxford dictionary, is “the quality of being morally right or justifiable.” So…being justified in your actions, your intentions or both?
If we are to ask a higher power, as in the Bible (which most people think is a pretty righteous publication), you get, “Righteousness is one of the chief attributes of God as portrayed in the Hebrew Bible. Its chief meaning concerns ethical conduct (for example, Leviticus 19:36; Deuteronomy 25:1; Psalm 1:6; Proverbs 8:20). In the Book of Job the title character is introduced to us as a person who is perfect in righteousness.”
Yikes!! So…being “God-like” seems a little daunting for me. Especially as it pertains to a game, and more specifically, a game based on the Simpsons.
I will stop trying to be righteous, and do the right things in life…which is a pretty righteous way to live, as long as you don’t trumpet it about. Because there is just so much self-righteousness out there these days! Who needs more pedestal standing, and finger pointing, and holier-than-though-inating?
Which brings us to the recent “wailing and gnashing of teeth” (see how I used Biblical language there?) about the recent news that Hank Azaria has made a statement that he will no longer voice the character of Apu.
For those less inclined to read, when you have already read this much (which is a lot), the operative quote from the article is as follows: “”We all agreed on it,” he said. “We all feel like it’s the right thing and good about it.”
The comedian Hari Kondabolu — whose 2017 documentary, “The Problem with Apu,” thrust controversy over the character into the mainstream — wrote Friday on Twitter that he hopes “The Simpsons” keeps Apu and lets “a very talented writing staff do something interesting with him.”
“My documentary ‘The Problem with Apu’ was not made to get rid of a dated cartoon character, but to discuss race, representation & my community (which I love very much),” Kondabolu wrote. “It was also about how you can love something (like the Simpsons) & still be critical about aspects of it (Apu).”
Hmm…OK. So it sounds like Hank is passing the Rupee here. The fact is, he was tired of having interviews about his other projects hijacked by talk show hosts who wanted to keep the controversy alive. It may or may not have been the decision of Fox, or “Big D” (Disney) as one of our readers stated. The fact is, nobody needs a bunch of bad press. Least of all, someone like Azaria who works hard to expand his career outside of the Simpsons. Even if one of those roles is “Brockmire,” one of the most Un-PC types on TV…although it is all about him trying to change for the better, and stop being so tone-deaf.
Tons of readers here, jumped on the “Get Over It…It’s The Simpsons…and not as bad as Family Guy, or South Park” bandwagon. I get it. Let’s face it…you can always find someone worse these days in media. You don’t have to look very far on YouTube to find all sorts of miscreants and crudbuckets exercising their “First Amendment Rights” in the name in “Info-Tainment” and fake news, while masquerading as commentary.
I get it. “Everyone has such thin skin these days!” works great, until it is your skin that is being bruised. Is Hank a racist who is trying to change his ways? Or is he just reciting the lines that the tone-deaf writers are putting in his mouth for a price? And, are they tone-deaf, or just pushing the envelope, until it is tattered, worn, and damaged beyond recognition?
I DO get it. Most of what is written for, and about Apu is silly stereotypes about convenience store workers, that has been around since convenience stores became ubiquitous. But, that doesn’t make it right.
We are supposed to evolve through our shared experiences. And tearing down, or degrading others for a laugh has lost its luster. Or SHOULD have.
If you doubt how things have changed for the “better,” but maybe not enough, watch Eddie Murphy’s first huge 1983 breakout special, “Delirious.”
It’s currently streaming on Netflix. The first 20 minutes is one long homophobic joke after another. It makes the comments for which Kevin Hart was pilloried before pulling out of hosting the Academy Awards in 2018, look like the “Gettysburg Address.”
We are supposed to be evolving.
And so, when Hank decides FOR ANY REASON, that he will no longer voice Apu, leaving the harder decision up to Fox/Disney/Gracie and the writers…who can blame him?
I’m 66-years-old. I can assure you that loads of things I used to do and say in my youth, make me cringe now. Maybe it’s because I get mad when some punk, says, “OK Boomer” when I tell them to turn down the music on their golf cart, because I’m trying to putt. Or maybe, it’s because I am just plain tired of seeing “the new normal,” be anything but.
Righteous? Pfffftttt… I’m far from righteous. But, I do know that deciding that Hank, or Fox, or EA, or Disney, or anyone is wrong, for trying to do the right thing, is anything but righteous.
Tag me. I can take it. Call me old fashioned…but I love the sense of community that tagging my neighbors, and being tagged creates.
But, if you are defending the right to continue to heap on abuse to those who have asked for some sort of suspension of your actions…you are wrong.
It’s pretty basic stuff. If someone asks you to stop doing something that is hurtful…just, stop. YOU don’t get to decide what is hurtful. That is not being righteous. That’s playing God.