A short essay of being square regarding pop culture

I’ve never read a single book from the Harry Potter series. Part of it is because I’ve never been comfortable with the whole concept while, frankly, I’ve skimmed over a few books and have been bored. When it comes to fantasy, I like science fiction, The Twilight Zone-style “What if?” and alternate history. It all just seems too contrived to me. Token sidekick. Token bad guy, etc. When my wife and kids talk about Dumbledorf, Hogwarts, Gobbledygook and whatever the head teacher is at Harry’s school, it’s as if they’re speaking Finnish.

Speaking of “Twilight”, I’m also not a fan of the Twilight series. Probably for the same reasons above. Vampires have never really interested me: while I do like Stephen King, I’ve never even finished reading ’Salem’s Lot (a story where vampires invade a Maine town).

Up until a few months ago, I had no idea who Lady Gaga was. I wish I still had no idea who Lady GagGag was.

Whenever I open People, Us or some other weekly magazine that kisses up to celebrities, I am amazed to look through the pages and see celebrities I’ve never even heard of. Sometimes, it’s as if I’ve just woken up from a 10-year coma.

Up until 2006, I never knew rapper Eminem had a close friend named Proof. While many might lament Proof’s untimely death, I wonder how many realize had Proof not been killed in a shootout, he would have been charged with murder.

I watch very few “reality” shows, and that includes America’s Got Talent. I’m trying to understand Sharon Osbourne’s obsession with lip-synching drag queens or why Piers Morgan believes as Simon Cowell does–that you have to be a classless jerk to tell someone they don’t have talent (never mind many are misled onto the show unwittingly for entertainment purposes). And to think that Stephen King declined to post examples of abysmal prose submissions when he held his writing contest, stating he felt it was poor sportsmanship to shoot cripples.

Richard Zowie is a Michigan-based writer. Post comments here or e-mail him at richardzowie@gmail.com.

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