straight to the art of the matter
Kevin Drum of CalPundit takes issue with a Guardian article that scoffs at the late Princess Diana's taste in music, finding it too pedestrian. ("To the end of her life, Diana's tastes were not just middle-aged but horribly underachieving - and they seem to have come to a juddering halt around the time of Live Aid in 1985." Hey, you have a problem with '80s pop?). Drum rejoins:
...people who think that it's sophisticated to make snarky remarks about someone else's taste in books, or popular music, or movies, or whatnot, need to grow up.
I have always found this tedious even in casual conversation, but it's especially snobby (or anti-snobby as the case may be) when you see it in print, where someone obviously had time to think it through and decided to say it anyway. Antonin Scalia is a huge opera buff, but this doesn't make him a worthy person. Oprah Winfrey has middlebrow taste, but this doesn't make her a bad person, regardless of what Norah Vincent and Jonathan Franzen may think.
The art police ought to stay in their caves, where they belong, and leave the rest of us alone to enjoy our lives.
Amen, brother. Personally, while I think I have refined enough taste to distinguish quality (yet another reason I don't go to movies much any more), I revel in any number of things some might consider questionable taste: Japanese pop music, Mickey Spillane novels, Speed Racer, Golan-Globus movies, The Go-Go's, kaiju flicks (hey, I even liked Godzilla's Revenge), lava lamps, Ed Wood movies, Italian zombie films, Dean Martin records, comic books, old computer games, punk rock, chop-socky films, and much more. Anyone who has a beef with that doesn't have to read this Web log, and many do indeed take that path. That's fine. But I don't apologize for my tastes to anyone.
If this snooty Brit writer wants to write a haughty diatribe against my frequent departures from highbrow culture, she's welcome. But I betcha I'm having a lot more fun than she is.