The details of twerking are now all over the Internet. Instructions. History. Some claim it goes back 20 years. Whatever. Folks from my era just shrug it off as another thing we will never do, like zip-lining or writing our own rap lyrics.
To be honest, I feel sorry for kids today. We only had to learn to roll our arms in the air, like we were conjuring up a magic potion, and we could survive on the dance floor. Kids today need to grind, slide and simulate sex moves in order to be considered worthy.
It’s disturbing to see 11-year-olds thrusting and gyrating, suggesting they know the seductions of lovemaking when they haven’t gotten their braces off. Wait until they find out that actual sex is nowhere near as coordinated as an MTV performance. How can they feel anything other than uncool?
Which is all this twerking fuss is about. Being cooler than the rest. Cyrus, who, like other former child stars (Britney Spears, Justin Bieber) seems hell-bent on destroying the image she worked years to perfect, told a film crew that, before going out on stage, knowing how twerky she was going to be, she and Thicke said, “You know we’re about to make history right now.”
Then again, if all it took to make history was squatting and twirling your butt, the makers of the bidet would be a lot more famous.
This column is a perfect example of something Jude and I were chatting about this week, which is that nobody should have a column for life. (Breslin and Royko and Ivins being the exceptions that prove this rule.) After a while, you run out of shit to talk about and you wind up with this crap, or you start thinking the backyard squirrel that’s bugging you is the Worst Thing Ever, or that what your cab driver says is representative of the entire country’s political opinion. You get complacent, you get lazy, doing work starts to annoy you, and this is the result.
Getting old and doing something for a while doesn’t automatically make you an uncurious knob who can’t report anymore (see above cited exceptions), but goddamn it seems to happen really often (see Brooks, David and Friedman, Thomas). I’d rather term limits were designed to guard against it than suffer under the current star system where being on the bestseller list for some treacly nonsense 20 years ago gives you the presumption of interestingness forever. Where are the editors to say um, dude, not only is this last week’s story but this isn’t exactly a novel take on it either?
I’m also gonna say this about Miley: Every story about her performance either gives her way too little or way too much credit in assuming nothing she does is motivated by business. Oh, she’s exploring her adult sexuality! Oh, she’s trying to be shocking! Um, maybe she’s looking at her bank account and saying that to stay wealthy she’d better keep changing because the audience keeps changing. I’m not saying she did anything right or wrong, just that at least she’s not on stage yelling about how nobody loves her anymore because she’s so much better than they are.
Unlike newspaper celebrities like Albom.