Wednesday, February 11, 2004

Ivy League Circle Jerks

Meme-of-the-moment in the blog universe: Harvard students get approval to produce porn mag. Oh dear. As far as I know, this new porn mag—which will be called H Bomb <vomit>—has no relation to the first-ever Ivy League porno, which was to be called The StaXXX <double vomit> and was prematurely shot at Yale in 1999 before serving as the basis for the Comedy Central-produced TV movie Porn 'n' Chicken. Now I can think of a (ahem) handful of Harvard students I would like to see naked (as well as a few I already have seen sans culottes), but most of them are long gone. Perhaps there will be an alumni edition—and I don't mean the hot nude Harvard grad in this film, which I've already drooled on about at length. Someone put Matt Yglesias on this!

In other news of Ivy Leaguers getting too close for comfort, blogs have also been abuzz about a certain puff piece in the gramatically-challenged New York Sun that profiles ex-Harvard striver Jennifer 8. Lee. Calling her the "Katharine Graham of the Friendster set," the Sun waxes rhapsodic about Jenny 8's "legendary" parties where young D.C. movers-and-shakers (though sadly no Toby) come to network over handmade dumplings. The useless Wonkette (insecure stepsister to Gawker) says this is a non-story and only interesting for its nepotism angle. You see, the writer of the Jenny 8 fluff piece was one of Jenny 8's Harvard acquaintances, proving that the NY Sun really is just "one big Harvard circle-jerk," as they put it at Like Father, Like Sun, an ombudsmanesque site that monitors the Sun for suckiness. (LF,LS also links to an anonymous tipster who says he knows the Harvardians personally. WARNING: link is to the vile putrid hate-spewing atrocious right-wing National Review.)

Personally, I don't agree with Wonkette's dismissal of the puff piece as not-news: it's a huge scoop that both Harvard students and D.C. wonks (2 of the country's most socially dysfunctional groups) have been documented attempting to have fun, albeit in a BYOB setting. But I do agree with Her Wonkness's belief that this pseudo-nepotism at the Sun, while unfortunate, is hardly surprising or a conspiracy; many media entities in the US are Ivy Leaguer-filled. As far as my personal experience with the people in question (like the nameless NRO tipster, I went to school with them, and also worked with some of them), I agree with the tipster: "I can attest that they are wonderful people." Well, actually, I can attest that Jenny 8 and unmentioned Sun reporter Rachel Kovner, the supposed saving grace of the Sun, are indeed "wonderful people," but the chick who wrote the Jenny 8 puff piece was (in all my interactions with her) boring, shrill, and bitchy, much like this weblog. But you don't have to take my word for it. >ba-dum-PUM<

Final Ivy circle-jerk/conspiracy note: with John Kerry the supposed Democratic front-runner for the 2004 election, there's been lots of idle chatter about the fact that he and Bush (Jr., Sr., and earlier) were both members of Skull & Bones, the most infamous of Yale's infamous "secret societies" "senior societies." (As far as I know, Skull & Bones has no relation to a certain 2000 movie thriller.) While it's exciting to picture Kerry and Bush standing hand-in-hand while sacrificing goats or filming gay bondage orgies or whatever it is they do in the secret senior societies, I think Wonkette and I can agree that this is the real non-story; this enlightening post at Columbia-Union expertly sums up why such Ivy League conspiracy "theories" are inane at best.

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