Two professors from the University of Washington are teaching a class that everyone, and I mean EVERYONE, should have to take during their college career. The course is aptly named Calling Bullshit in the Age of Big Data. Yes, it is an actual course offered for one credit. They have published the syllabus and the reading material used in the course so that students at other universities can take advantage of the opportunity.
As a student, it’s pretty common for us to succumb to the stagnation of human movement and sit for hours’ binge watching tv shows (it’s almost a rule of nature). Lately for me it’s a continuous battle whether to watch more British television or more American television.
Maybe I’ve made myself more open to it than others but for me in recent years I find that the quality of TV originating from English broadcasting companies, predominantly BBC, are constantly improving the quality of TV that we’re looking for.
Over the last few years, in majority, American script writers have lacked originality (I’m not saying they’re not of high quality). There has been a burst on the American streamline for everything and anything superhero, although I am a fan to most if not all of them, I do have a keen interest for watching something that is always different and unique. Nearly every network on the American agenda has a current or future development for a superhero television series (Take a look at the CW they have 4 ongoing series at the moment). What essentially seems to be the problem is that America has a stereotype or rather continuous dramatic plot lines. Example – how many takes of detective shows are there? We’ve got CSI, Hawaii Five-0, a few NCIS’, Criminal Minds, Castle, Lucifer … (My brain is spinning thinking of this many already).
Compared this to what’s being broadcast in the UK – for example the long running sci-fi series Doctor Who. It has been running from the 60’s with its revival in 2005 and is going strong since. While initially introduced to educate its audience on astronomy it brings together different creative elements that make it a masterpiece – horror, comedy, drama (who doesn’t love some of it) and the ability to open your mind to endless possibilities of secret civilizations, different worlds while also making its connection to the 21st century. I can’t think of an American tv show that does this, at least not off the top of my head! (Could argue your case for Supernatural!)
In the past, a few American networks have had countless takes on attempting to remake British TV and introduce it into the US and the failures certainly outweigh the success’.
Obvious failures include Little Britain, Skins, Misfits, The IT Crowd and The Inbetweeners. Very few have proven successfully including Shameless and The Office.
The main reason for this high failure rate (if the fact that America tried to remake Little Britain into “Little Britain USA” wasn’t the first clue) is that humour between the 2 nations are extremely different. Firstly, English humour (similar to Irish humour) embarks on a much more sometimes darker humour than expected, much of the time people take the absolute piss out of each other (translation = people spend much of their time mocking each other) especially to those you dislike but also there’s a tendency to do it to yourself.
If it was obviously apparent from the GIF screenshot, this example of Sherlock backs up my point – and also, who played Sherlock better: Robert Downey Jr vs Benedict Cumberbatch? Obviously goes to Benedict Cumberbatch. The first mistake you’ve already made is if you’re aware of this incredible show and have put it on the back-burner (Please fix that immediately)
I also feel like “foul” language or cursing doesn’t seem appropriate for American shows – as I’ve come to know them as Cable and Network channels with Cable TV allowing for it up to a certain level. English TV, depending on the culture that is being depicted, the characters, and the overall form of the TV show you could have every character cursing maybe a dozen times in just one sentence (probably the reason why Misfits USA never went ahead)
I’m only rejoicing to the fact that America haven’t tried to disrupt the long-running sci-fi Doctor Who. Can’t imagine that being successful!
I think the most obvious way to describe the change in humour is comparing the two primary characters of the US Office, one of the successful remakes, and the UK Office – Michael Scott a more exuberant character who could still be childish compared to David Brent’s dark and narcissistic character.
In my opinion anyway, I do feel that the quality of tv and script writing in the UK market definitely trumps over the American market (probably because I’m Irish and I understand both extremely well while some American’s wouldn’t understand the writing or have a hard grasp on the accent). I also think that the repetitious storylines don’t help – but who knows? The market seemed to have moved away from teen drama/comedies (Dawson’s Creek / The OC / One Tree Hill / Gossip Girl etc.) from the early 2000’s to dominating superhero’s in 2016. Maybe something new will come in the not so distant future?!
Welcome to the world of Missed Connections where you can post on Craigslist a short description (or a dramatic poem) about a person you saw and wished you would have “connected with”. And if the majority of the posts weren’t so ridiculously creepy, it could almost be sweet to see how many romantics are out there, tirelessly searching for someone they briefly made eye contact with in line at Taco Bell.
Here’s a few good ones I found in Montana.. And who knows – maybe someone is out there looking for you! You can thank me later when you and your soulmate get connected.
Or do be shy. Unless you’re looking for cheap rent.
2. Connecting on a Connecting Flight.
You know what else is magnificent? Punctuation.
3. The worst post, ever.
I have a couple things to say about this one..
1)Brown hair? Brown skin? 2) Were you eating a Crunchwrap Supreme, because those do tend to get messy. 3) I can’t imagine that Razr phone’s photo quality is any good 4)I hope your wife takes that 1994 Vintage Aerostar and drives very quickly and very far away from you. 5) Katy, don’t call him.
4. The Spelling Bee Champion.
couldn’t*, were*, wearing*, and again, were*
5.The Hit and Run.
… so do you want my number to go on a date or to make an insurance claim?
6. Searching for an equally insane counterpart.
Play on playa, play on.
7. The enthusiasm is real.
He must have been really cute!!!!!!!!!!!!! n really funny !!!!!!!!!! n like so awesome!!!!!!!!!
8. The Tall Cowboy.
..and this makes us so VERY uncomfortable.
9. Lookin’ Gassy.
He either bought gasoline or Pepto Bismol.
10. The Hopeless Romantic?
He’s not just praying to one baby Jesus, he’s praying to ALL of them! aww
The modern world of dating is a god damn war zone. It’s hard enough to meet a decent person in real life, but trying to meet someone online is a whole different realm of chaos. For those of you that don’t know, Tinder is a mobile dating app that allows losers like myself to “swipe” yes or no on other, equally as pathetic people. If we both swipe right, it’s a “match” and the floodgates of communication open. Basically, this app allows you to waste your time sifting through profiles, hoping to stumble across someone who seems relatively normal and is half way decent looking.
When I moved to Portland this summer, I thought Tinder would be a great way to put myself out there. I had just gotten out of a relationship and it seemed like a fun, easy way to meet new people. Boy, did I have no idea what I was in for. Of course I always took the proper precautions when I went out (talking with them extensively beforehand, meeting first in public, etc.). but nothing could have prepared me this. After much thought and deliberation, I give you seven very real accounts of the worst dates I’ve ever been on, no thanks to Tinder.
#7. The Guy Who Was Actually Nineteen
In my defense, he definitely seemed to be a few years older. He was smooth, mature, intelligent, and seemed to have a lot going for him. That is… until he started talking about his football team. I asked him if he played for a college, and he got red in the face and quickly changed the subject. It was only after a few minutes of prying that he finally blurted out that he was a senior. In high school. As I got up to leave he tried to justify that he “only told me he was 22 because he thought I would never go out with someone who was younger on my own accord.” You were correct, sir.
#6. The Guy Who Was 2 Hood 4 Me
When I was greeted with, “Aye! Wass good lil mama!?” I immediately realized that I’d made a grave mistake. I smiled back and weakly replied that I was fine, thank you. We had met up for ice cream at Salt N Straw on NW 23rd Ave in Portland, and there was a long line. The next forty-five minutes were agonizing as the sun beat down on my forehead and I internally cringed at almost everything he did and said. His poor grammar, the lack of manners, the fact that there were small children scattered all around and he cursed every other word. As we moved further up the line, he told me about his life growing up in the projects (his language, not mine) and how he aspired to “make enough dollas to neva eva go back.” I, too, aspire to neva eva go back.
#5. The Guy Who Photoshopped His Profile Pictures
I should have really looked into this one more before I agreed to meeting up. First of all, his name was Leonardo, so that’s problem number one. Second, he talked about his looks a lot (like, a lot) which should have been a red flag that there was something wrong. He told me all about how tall he was, and how much he weighed, etc. but I thought nothing of it, because they seemed to be normal measurements and I am not too concerned with that in the first place. What I am concerned with is when someone extensively photo shops their own pictures in order to make themselves look taller and not morbidly obese. Well guess what. Leo was approximately 5’6” and at LEAST 200 lbs. He even wore those god awful tight skater pants that exposed just how out of shape he was. I was really irritated that he had lied about this, but then felt bad and thought maybe he could be a nice guy who just really needed a date. Nope. His personality was just as awful as his photo edits. I’m not proud of the fact that I sat through four beers with Leonardo because he was buying, or that I agreed to go to a future Trailblazers game that I knew I’d never attend, but hey. At least I was honest about who I was.
#4. The Guy Who Only Talked About Work
First of all, I have to say that I truly appreciate when people are passionate about what they do. As a graduating senior this may, I hope to find a job that I love and want to share with others. But I could never live my work like this guy does. Now, I thought we would get along great because we were both Greeks and both business students. I am studying marketing, he went into sales. I don’t even remember what the hell it was that he sold, although I should remember. I should actually be an expert. Why? Because he spent the better part of two hours explaining the logistics of the technology behind it. And that is what we talked about. The entire time. He then begged me to come out with him for a night of dancing, and I should have stopped while I was ahead. But he was cute, and I thought maybe I could save the date. So while we were out, he got a phone call from one of his “best clients”, aka some rich old man who frequently bought speakers for his fleet of Malibu boats. My date then hung up the phone and exclaimed, “I’m so glad you’re dressed up! Steve is coming out with us tonight! I need you to impress him!” Um, what? The rest of my evening was spent with my date and a sixty something year old man getting black out drunk downtown and talking about boats accompanied by a slew of weird comments about my dress. I called an Uber home and never looked back.
#3.The Guy Who Only Talked About His Mom
Again, I think it’s great when a man is family-oriented. It tends to be attractive when a guy has a great relationship with his mother. But everything is only good in moderation. It is difficult to explain the insanely creepy obsession this guy had with his mom. To say she was his best friend would be a gross understatement. They got coffee together multiple times a week. She came over to his house to cook for him, do his laundry, bring his groceries etc. (by the way, how dependent CAN YOU STILL BE at 24 years old?). In short, he spent our entire date gushing about how wonderful his mother was. And when he asked me things about myself, he’d say things like “oh! My mom does that too! You have so much in common.” Please, no. It was such a bizarre experience. Like, I get it. I love my mom too. But you need to make some other friends. By the end of the date I felt like I knew his mother way more than I knew him. Oh and by the way she didn’t even sound that great. But I didn’t have the heart to tell him that.
#2. The Bastard Who Stole My Favorite Book
Oh, Michael. I really thought we had something special. We had such a grand time gallivanting through parks, exploring old dive bars and bonding over the fact that we both know an absurd amount about Greek Mythology. Yes, Michael was excellent. Until one weekend when he had to travel to California for work. I suggested he borrow my favorite book, The Alchemist, because I thought he would enjoy it on his flight. Well, I drove him to the airport and waved goodbye. And that was the last time I saw Michael. Weeks went by and I became incredibly offended. Not because I was distraught over his absence but because I wanted my god damn book back. It’s about self-discovery for crying out loud. Anyways, I never heard from him again, but a few weeks later connected that his ex-girlfriend lives in the part of California he was visiting. My theory is that she was so overwhelmed with his new view of life (that he clearly derived from MY book) that she took his lame ass back.
By the way, if you haven’t read much Paulo Coelho, 10/10 would recommend.
#1. The Guy With The Sith Lord Tattoo
There are some very strange people in this world, my friends. And the terrifying thing is that more often than not, they disguise themselves as cute quirky nerds and then lay wait for you in places like Powell’s Bookstore. I’m not usually into the sci-fi scene, but this guy was a very rare breed of cat and somehow made it all work. We hit it off surprisingly well, and spent the whole afternoon together walking around downtown and chatting. During this conversation we somehow got on the subject of our mutual love of Star Wars (by somehow I mean I guessed that he liked it and I slyly brought it up because my flirt game is just that strong) and we delved into a long discussion over the classics. During this time he made an offhanded joke about how he was a Sith Lord, which I thought nothing of at the time. He added me on snapchat a few minutes after we left, which I thought was a bit over eager but nothing that strange. Then I saw his username. Sithlord199-. Then he sent me a snapchat: “want to see my tattoo?” This was strange, since it was completely out of the blue and we had just got done hanging out less than an hour ago. I should have said no. I should have just said no. IF ANYONE EVER ASKS YOU IF YOU WANT TO SEE THEIR TATTOO, JUST SAY NO.
So I said sure, and the picture I received is still burned into my frontal cortex to this day.
Image a giant tattoo that covers someones entire chest and stomach.
Now imagine the tattoo is of Darth Mauls face.
I’m not kidding. It covered his entire body. The worst part is that he then went on to explain to me just how much he personally identified as a Sith Lord. As in, he psychotically associated himself with the dark ways of the force and was completely freaking nuts. He proceeded to go 0-100 and let out all the crazy, all at once. I think the reason it was so traumatizing was because we had just spent an entire day together and he had totally hidden this side of him. Needless to say, this was not exactly what I had in mind when I hoped to meet someone who shared my love of Star Wars. To this day I still don’t understand why he felt the need to share his terrifying chest tattoo with me, because it was something straight out of the nightmare zone. In fact, after I blocked his phone number I kind of just went home and crawled underneath my covers.
Although I’ve been on some of the worst dates of my life because of Tinder, I’ve also met some great guys. I certainly have a love/hate relationship with this app, and let’s be honest I’m probably going to continue using it. In fact, I actually have a date set up for later this week. Let’s call him The Guy Who Might Be As Sassy As I Am.
Details to come soon! In the mean time, happy swiping!
If you’ve had a funny dating experience, from Tinder or just in general, please leave a comment below and tell me about it!