Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Grossing Out, Twice Removed

I wish I had a dime for every time Alex has asked me to drop whatever I’m doing so that he can show me some random dude’s film of some other dude skateboarding off his roof, or chugging a beer in record time and then burping the 1812 Overture. He watches them on the Internet of course, at a site that is the equivalent of YouTube’s younger brother; the littler one with chew stuck in his teeth. The stuff is, in general, a little ruder, harder, and delves right into the dark, so that after you watch the guy skateboard off his roof, you can also get a close up of his naked femur after he breaks his leg in half. Probably not coincidentally, the site’s name is I have bowed only twice to watching a few choice offerings there, and both times, showered afterward.

I love mindless media, just ask the people at VH1 who are happy to deliver the Celebreality tripe I consistently clamor for in 55 gallon drums; it’s not that. It’s that Break is the Web site equivalent of the guy who drives a car with a “No fat chicks” bumper sticker on it, with his Jerky Boys tape turned up to 11. And I realize that, not only am I not hurting his feelings with these observations, I’m probably just encouraging him. So be it.

Despite my outward criticisms of such media, I don’t begrudge Alex his enjoyment of it, as long as I don’t have to drop whatever I’m doing to watch it myself, or hear about it over the phone while I’m trying to work. (I have to wonder what else he does at work.) For a few weeks running now, Alex explained to me, there’s been one video making the rounds more than any other, generating a buzz that was hard for Internet video-watching America to ignore. It was called, ominously, Two Girls, One Cup, a video that the vox populi touted as unwatchable. Not being one to ignore a gauntlet, no matter how juvenile, no matter how “betcha can’t” or “double dog dare,” Alex bucked up, gave it his all, and “was only able to make it eight seconds,” he told me, dialing up each of his friends to initiate a long-distance game of “betcha can’t” tag.

As I wondered how all of these men make incomes that are triple my own, one friend was only able to make it five seconds, with another, grittier guy just barely making it all the way through. Another friend had to stop watching it after ten seconds, and even after turning away from the picture, was unable to listen to it. “I don’t understand,” I said, unable to even guess at what would make these grown men—these ungross-outable men—so grossed out. “Is it snuff?” I asked, reaching for the most terrible genre I could think of.

“No, it’s poop,” I saw Alex wince. “And puke.”

A movie with poop in it that’s sweeping the nation. It’s these kinds of phenomena that make me wonder why I’m not a millionaire yet.

I won’t narrate the plot here; you can read about it yourself, literally ad nauseum, just by Googling the title. But the notes on the story line are these: Nude or nude-ish girl meets girl. Girl and girl meet all manners of the most rude and foul activities that one can perform with the body’s humors.

Right, so that’s all fine. I get it. I’m the girl who almost vomited during both Jackass I and II, not because of some of the more nauseating stunts, but because I laughed so hard during them. (I’m thinking specifically of one gag—no pun intended—in particular, entitled “Fart Mask.”) And I’m still not watching Two Girls, One Cup, all high-pressure tactics notwithstanding. I’m no sensor, no puritan. I’m not taking a stand, I’m making a choice, and it’s to think more about puppy dogs and Skittles than about two girls, one cup, and the interesting-but-not-that-interesting motives behind the camera. Maybe you’ll choose the same, or maybe you’ll let the curiosity get the better of you, pussy cat. No harm, no foul. Just count me in for hayrides and show tunes, and out for witnessing women take the Pepsi challenge with a cornucopia of each others’ body fluids.

Oh, and by the way, our friend Jeff has seen the whole thing five times now, the best part about that being that it’s so fun to watch him watching it that he threw an ad hoc viewing party in which he sat facing his computer monitor and his guests sat facing him. Who knew such a thing could be so entertaining? As it turns out: the Internet knew. They know everything.

Now, not only can you watch Two Girls, One Cup, (or not watch it, as the case may be) you can watch videos of people watching Two Girls, One Cup. A cottage industry!

So I told Alex that, as a consolation prize for my refusal to answer the call to jump off the bridge like everyone else, I would gladly appear on-camera, as a person watching a person watching Two Girls, One Cup. I’m such an innovator. Mom will be so proud.


Neil...AKA...Neil said...

I can relate on more than one level. I have two teenage boys (OK one's 20 but he still acts 13)these guys stop and grab me maybe ten times a day to look at some world class nasty film clip from people who no doubt are making their parents prouder then Neil Armstrong’s mom and dad. On the other level I can relate because I was once a teenager to. Fart and burp humor is classic comedy and the video craze is proof of that. In fact, videos will capture classic scenes of flatulence for posterity and the legions of teenagers who follow in our foot steps. I wish I had a video tape of Nikkei Strinaro farting for almost 30 seconds in the fourth grade to show my kids and grand kids. That was entertainment I tell ya...Neil...AKA...Neil

Carolyn Burns Bass said...

Yes, boys and bodily functions go together like Charmin and snot.

This was made clear to me when I drove my daughter's kindergarten carpool. She was the only girl in a van full of boys. The boys would sit three-abreast in the wayback seat, my 3-year-old son in the middle seat, and my daughter in the front beside me. They serenaded us with rounds of farts, burps and retches all the way to school

Amy said...

This was awesome, Jody. Your blog post, not the 2 Girls, 1 Cup video. I am still debating about whether to google and watch this. And if I do give in to peer pressure and google and then watch this...will I google and watch people watching this? And then what will I do when the less creative begin ripping off the 2 Girls with their 1 Cup and start filming sequels? And then the writers of the internet begin posting fanfiction sites dedicated to the 2 Girls and their 1 Cup?

The internet is outta control!!

Also: the part of this blog I laughed hardest at was the part where you described almost vomiting to Jackass's skit "Fart Mask." I have never seen "Fart Mask," but I laughed because the word "fart" always makes me laugh, and just the thought of farting is making me really, really giggle right now.

I have no couth.

Verna Wilder said...

Yuck!! And wonderful writing, as usual, Jody. I'll pass on watching this one. I raised girls, a whole different species from boys, as I have long suspected. I have 3 grandsons, and I love them all very much, and I still don't understand anything about what they find funny or entertaining. Who ARE these people?!