So here's Katherine Timpf at The National Review, looking askance at the students at Clare College in Cambridge who are critiquing an "Orient Express" themed party on the ground of tourist privilege.
One student — with the delightful name Ploy Kingchatchaval — said:
The vibe they are going for with the Orient Express is white people traveling in first class on a train, visiting "exotic" places with the inherent sense of privilege that comes from being a rich tourist . . . it’s going to be a white presentation of these places they’re trying to represent, full of stereotypes, which is erasing and gross.The school had touted an atmosphere of "romance and adventure," where "the sights, sounds, and smells of this love letter to luxury travel will blend seamlessly." Total bullshit, of course, the sort of thing students have always — as far as I've known — mocked (except for the students who organize dances and do decorations). So why not mock it in the language of social justice, which is a rich source of verbiage, and it really upsets the authorities, just like sex and drugs used to upset the authorities in the old days. You've got to use the tools you have.
But Kingchatchaval doesn’t buy [the school's message]. In fact, he insists that the school was “clearly” trying to be offensive on purpose:He? Why is Timpf assuming Ploy Kingchatchaval is a man? Ploy Kingchatchaval is a woman — a very beautiful woman, actually. Did you just become more or less willing to hear what Kingchatchaval has to say?
“They clearly didn’t intend for it to be about travel because Orient is such a loaded term,” he said.
I tend to find that whenever you’re having a bad time at Cambridge, you’re always told to maintain perspective, to look at the bigger picture. It’s just one week in eight! One term in three! You’re at Cambridge, for fuck’s sake! Gaze upon the glorious, looming presence of King’s Chapel and remember how insignificant your problems are, puny undergraduate! Observe the perpetual cycle of formal halls with their candlelit magnificence and the great black flapping gowns, of the myriad of hands exchanging tomes of knowledge in the hallowed corridors of the UL: how can your essay crisis compare when it’s but a mere blip in the consciousness of this eternal, ever-magnificent institution?That's Kingchatchaval, writing at the link that I put on "a very beautiful woman," supra. She's studying English, interested in writing, putting words together, a young person, looking for a place in the world. But let's get back to Timpf, who's got her place, however secure, at The National Review, and her choice/assignment is to go after the young woman — a young woman who's being serious and funny — and to mock her, wreck her, connect her to whatever other annoying things have been bugging The National Review people lately.
Oh, Timpf really doesn't have much to say. She mostly just puts "Cleaaaarly!" after Kingchatchaval's "They clearly didn’t intend...." Oh, sarcasm, that's the best critique ever.
By the way, Timpf is the Fox News commentator who said this last fall about the new "Star Wars" movie:
"I have never had any interest in watching space nerds poke each other with their little space nerd sticks, and I’m not going to start now. You people are crazy. You Star Wars people are crazy. Yesterday I tweeted something, and all I said was that I wasn’t familiar with Star Wars because I’ve been too busy liking cool things and being attractive — people threatened my life."Busy liking cool things and being attractive... If that's not cool, then don't like it.
In the end, my taste and my sense of
CORRECTION: On proofread, I saw that I'd written "In the end, my taste and my sense of reason...." I'm not sure how "reason" popped in. I'd always meant to write humor (as in paragraph 1 of this post). Makes you wonder how the mind works, no? Surely, not by that wacky force humans call "reason," but that's the subject of the previous post.