Seriously.Okay ‘I get it’, but like… no. I am really upset that I am now seeing previews for The Buried Life season 2. Like I really, really hate it. So much that I’ve categorized my reasoning into the following outline. I. Fuck The Buried Life because of the ‘ideal’ it tries to establish. Because:
a) It’s alienating.The Buried Life establishes the lifestyle of the four bros it features as the sort of ideal that everyone ought to aspire to. Like everyone is stilted and really just wishes they could chill out / be as ‘real’ as The Buried Life bros (here on out TBLB) but can’t because they’re tied to their meaningless corporate jobs, family they feel ‘stuck with’, friends they feel ‘obligated to get a beer with’ even though they ran out of things to talk about shortly after they graduated college in 1999. Like everyone aspires to be an upper middle class young man with ‘nothing to lose’, ‘nothing to fear’, no relationships / ‘baggage’ to tie them to a certain place. The truth is, the only person who can be a TBLB, is guys like the TBLBs. You have to be single, young, rich, (I’d argue, male) and have loads of free time on your hands to aspire to TBLB ideal. And if you can’t do that, then you’re alienated from the dream/ideal life/lifestyle that the show represents. In other words, if you don’t fall into those previous categories, you can’t be ‘real’. And earth to the post-MTV set, very few people do.
b) It’s not actually the ideal. Duh.
Please don’t even get me started on the fact that ‘the real _____’ is inherently an oppressive, Western-biased thing to say (I’ll elaborate in the future, I’m sure). So to avoid the long, drawn-out point, let me just say that it is absolutely ridiculous to assume that every man, let alone every person, aspires to a life where they shirk all responsibility and spend months to years of their life doing ‘whatever the fuck they want’ while trying to carve out meaning / identity. Believe it or not, maybe some people actually get meaning out of their corporate jobs, or their marriage to their high school sweetheart (whom they still love even if she has gained twenty pounds and sometimes their young children are frustrating). And, believe it or not, some people are actually women! Who might not aspire to be 20-year-old straight college douchebags, after all!II. Fuck The Buried Life because it’s sexist. Speaking of women. First, I will admit that the reason I realized I hated The Buried Life in the first place was that the first episode I watched (but not the last, unfortunately for me) was the episode where they ‘help deliver a baby’. When a medical professional said the word “vagina” and every TBLB dissolved in laughter (really? are vaginas hilarious? are we thirteen again? you are in a medical setting!!!), I realized this show was not for me. Can you imagine if four college-aged women quit their jobs and/or never got one and/or quit college to drive around the country trying to do zany things as a way to ‘fulfill their dreams’ and ‘find meaning in their life’? No, you can’t. Because: a) Society tells us that the ‘point’ of being a woman is to get married, procreate, or at the very least ‘settle down’ and wait for those things to happen. If a woman took a cross-country roadtrip, the point of which was trying to get a date with, I don’t know, Shia LeBeouf, people would criticize her for being ‘silly’ at best, or at worst ‘desperate to get married’. But the TBLB who hunted down Megan Fox is ‘brave’ and ‘thought-provoking’ for trying to meet her. b) Society tells us that while TBLBs want to play basketball with the president and succeed in a breakdance battle (things that are viewed as ‘interesting’ and ‘relevant’), women are thought to be interested in activities that prepare them for their future roles as wives and mothers (see above). So while the ideal TBLB-copycat will try something like skateboarding down the Grand Canyon, the female counterpart will aspire to a quiet evening of scrapbooking alone while she waits for her boyfriend to call her. At her most raucous, she will drink two whole martinis with her girlfriends (while her boyfriend is tied up with those out-of-touch college friends at their once-a-month meeting). III. Fuck The Buried Life because it’s inauthentic. Please, PLEASE do not tell me that TBLBs are ‘authentic’ / ‘ought to be taken seriously’ / ‘not into the TV aspect of it’ because they allegedly (via their Wiki) did this for a year or something before getting paid for it. Because: a) Driving a giant bus around Canada / the United States (not to mention paying whatever bills / student loans you may have, plus feeding / clothing yourself, etc.) is not free. I don’t care if the TBLBs didn’t pay for it themselves, someone paid for it. The costs don’t just go away. Who is paying for these expenses? Probably their parents, pre-MTV involvement. Which absolutely is embarrassing. b) Even if you had unlimited funding from a rich uncle who really gave a shit about your worthless bucket list (maybe he’s one of the over-30 viewers who boost your ratings out of a desperation to live vicariously through your ‘freedom’), don’t you think that money could go somewhere else, in a slightly more productive way? Sure, you’re entitled to do whatever you want with the money you have, but please don’t dangle it in my face that you’re so prolific when you’re spending thousands of dollars (at the very least) on gas. c) We are in a recession. Fuck off. d) If you really want to embrace millennialism / the 2k10 lifestyle then start a blog and see if anyone gives a shit about what you have to say. If you end up with a TV network or rich uncle to pay for your irresponsibility, then at the very least fly to other countries and visit the shrines of other religious traditions. Go to museums. Write philosophy full-time. Volunteer on boards. Don’t sneak onto a red carpet to ask Megan Fox on a date. IV. Fuck The Buried Life because it can’t be replicated. The philosopher Robert Nozick once made a great analogy when he essentially said that if you want to spend the first 35 years of your life researching and getting a PhD in Sanskrit, and then (shockingly) you find yourself unable to get a job in such a narrow field, well then… that’s your fault, isn’t it? You should take responsibility for the consequences because you could’ve predicted them, and sure, some people are lucky enough to be Dr. Sanskrit, but most of us realize we need to follow other more realistic career paths. Let’s seriously consider what would happen if every person quit their job and decided to spend their life aspiring to play basketball with Obama. Duh, not possible. Which goes back to point one and this being an unattainable ideal, so let’s stop here. So let me ask you… if you had unlimited funds and you knew you were dying (or you were a 20-year-old collegiate douchebag with a trust fund), what would you do with your time?