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Thursday, April 02, 2009

What have you got?

Remember "The Wild One"? Almost the archetype for movies of teenage rebellion, released at the time when teenagers were invented, the film (which, amazingly, was banned in Britain until 1968) features Marlon Brando. It also declares the fundamental cannon of the newly-invented teenager.

As he and his boys are guzzling beer and dancing with some of the ladies in the bar, one female dance partner questions Johnny:

Hey, Johnny, What are you rebelling against?

While tapping out a jazzy beat on the top of the jukebox, he raises his eyebrow and drawls his amorphous reason for rebellion:

What've you got?

I was listening to the radio earlier on, and the reporter was somewhere in the society talking to a group of G20 protestors. They were fairly clear on what they were against (everything, essentially: nuclear weapons, meat, war, capitalism, climate change etc etc) but not clear on what they were for. I guess that's unsurprising, because they are in favour of all sorts of different and mutually exclusive things. I was mingling with the bobos (*) in the City today, by the Royal Exchange, and they certainly did have an interesting range of banners.

(*) This is my new word that I learned from a French person yesterday. He called the protestors "bourgeois bohemes" (in other words, middle class kids out for some adventure) or "bobos" for short. It's perfect.

In the future, everyone will be famous to fifteen people.
[posted with ecto]

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