May 1, 2012

"Another Atlantic-sponsored party where ordinary guests get to stand in a separate area and watch the higher-ranking guests talk to each other."

"Somebody over there thinks Americans like that sort of thing."

That's Mickey Kaus, via Instapundit.

I'd like to see the Atlantic make a TV show out of it, the way Playboy did with "Playboy After Dark" and "Playboy's Penthouse." I'd stand in a separate area willingly if I could watch Lenny Bruce:



"I was talkin' to the chicks and all of a sudden they just floated off... This is a kind of an interesting party. You know, I first figured it would be like sort of a TV you know typical uh fake party, you know. But it's kind of good party feeling to it with some pretty chicks which is a good composite here... That's what grooved me about the show, that is, it's actually a party, so that whatever happens at a party, you know, within limitations."

Was anyone blabbering at that level at the Atlantic party?

You know, Lenny Bruce is really sort of you know hard uh to kind of transcribe there's all these extra like... words.

22 comments:

The Crack Emcee said...

Higher-ranking guests,...

Talk about your self-cancelling phrases,...

ndspinelli said...

Bruce was no Pryor. Not even close.

traditionalguy said...

Celebrities are like money walking. Their images and faces are guarded and sold for a price.

The days of educated conversation are supplanted by faces we feel good looking at. The Big Brother poster is a political version of the power of facial recognition induced emotional reactions by pavlovian audiences.

The revenge comes when National Inquirer someday runs cover photos of down and out fat and dying former celebrities.

Dave said...

Carlin was better than both, IMO

Aridog said...

As a certified N.I.P I can't imagine attending one of these shindigs, let alone paying a shekel for the privilege. What does one have to be thinking to feel good about going to an affair where they are cordoned off and can only watch special people party?

EDH said...

Bruce may have made Hef a little uncomfortable when Bruce raised the class card and pointed to the exclusionary/vicarious nature of the program for most viewers.

I'm sure Hef viewed it as inclusive and democratizing because the television viewer was central and part of the conversation, unlike the Atlantic gawk-fest.

Aside, had he lived a few more years, Lenny Bruce would have look like the Bugs Bunny version of Peter Lorre.

bagoh20 said...

Man, dat cat, Bruce, is hard to listen too. That's excruciating, baby.

Where's the chicks?

phx said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ndspinelli said...

Dave, I liked Carlin but he became a nasty drunk performer in his later years. He had a great comedic mind. Towars the end, I thought he should just write material for someone not so fucking nasty.

Scott said...

Another Atlantic-sponsored party where ordinary guests get to stand in a separate area and watch the higher-ranking guests talk to each other.

It's just like the party that is this blog. The high-ranking bloggers talk to each other and guest-blog at each others' blogs, and those here in the low-ranking commentariat talk to each other.

virgil xenophon said...

Atlantic must have taken a cue from the Mardis Gras Balls in N.O. Nothing like invited "guests" sitting around in the bleacher seats in Municipal Auditorium or where ever in black tie while watching the actual "Krew" members dance out on the floor. Closely akin to watching paint dry or grass grow without even the small satisfaction of at least watching something marginally useful being accomplished. For those not directly involved, only a certain peculiar mind-set can possibly consider such things--such fun and excitement by proxy--"fun"--or even "interesting"--unless, that is, one is so unsure of their status in life that one is socially thrilled even to have been said to have been "present" at the affair--such "presence"--the very act of "being there"--being a sign in certain minds/quarters of their very social affirmation by "the swells." To even have been invited being seen as a badge of approval.

edutcher said...

Supposedly, Bruce wasn't that good consistently. More often than not, he was apparently off his game. When he was good, he was incredible, but it didn't happen that often.

The one time I saw "Playboy After Dark", I thought it was the dullest thing in the world. I was 16 then and I guess I expected girls with staples in their navels, or something.

Janette Kok said...

Their use of the words "nerd" and "prom" shows that these people have never mentally moved past the high school popularity contest mentality.

Lyle said...

Bigots.

Carl Vero said...

On the left, it's about expediency; on the right, it's about integrity:
Ever since the Hamptons became 'the' place to have a summer house, there's been an influx of people who think $300 mill will make a difference. Though they entertain lavishly and are desperate for invitations to our garden parties, we socialize very little. A moneyed Chicago thug is still a thug, a racist cotton king is still a racist, and a famous actress with three chins cut to one is still a stretch. The only common nominator is money; to them the measure of success, to us a mere tool.

Mitchell said...

What a bunch of snoots. I hope the Miller High Life guy showed up and took away their beer.

Wally Kalbacken said...

Jeez, I woulda had a needle in my arm as well!

Methadras said...

Would the playboy penthouse be considered the prototype for reality TV?

Will Cate said...

He did get off a pretty funny joke at 3:50

ndspinelli said...

Candid Camera was the prototype for true reality tv. But for uncomfortable amateur acting from pseudo celebrities, yes Methadras, After Dark may be the precursor.

Saint Croix said...

I'm sure Hef viewed it as inclusive and democratizing

I was struck by how much Hefner seemed to be playing James Bond. And I was shocked (shocked!) to see him out of his jammies.

Also I was surprised that the girls seemed like socialites rather than bunnies. They seem positively upscale. The sex is far more subtle. Later in his career Hefner would be more authoritarian vis-a-vis women. Here the girls are dressed up like he is. Almost on an equal basis.

You would really see Hefner the iconoclast at his later parties. He had women dressed as playful animals, and he himself turned into a walking bed metaphor.

Lots of people smoke pipes and wear suits. But who goes to parties in their pajamas?

That's another vibe I got from Hefner, he's so rich he can do whatever he wants. Not just rich, he's idle rich. He does no work, and his pajamas brag about it.

Hefner is selling the upscale lifetyle. You're supposed to enjoy him enjoying himself. Actually I think you're supposed to want to be Hefner.

Lenny Bruce is a toy, like one of Q's gadgets. The girls are toys, too. That's the whole idea of Playboy, for the idle rich to have fun with their toys.

The upper east side ladies used to invite a Black Panther to one of their parties. I think Lenny Bruce here is the same principle. You bring in Lenny Bruce for shock value and entertainment, so the party won't be dull. We're supposed to see Hefner as cosmopolitan and hip.

Bruce seems nervous to me. At first I thought it was because he's Jewish and an outsider. He's impressed with all this wealth and all these girls. And maybe impressed with Hefner, too, and his access to wealth and women.

But then I thought, maybe it's drugs? "Makes my nose bubbly." Was that a cocaine joke? Hefner thinks it's hilarious.

William said...

Lenny Bruce's life was one long death spiral. He wasn't waving, but, on the other hand, he wasn't being crucified either.....I don't know if he was such a great comedian, but he got the world to buy into his martyrdom act. That took something beyond talent. I'm not being sarcastic. How many heroin addicts get to deflect the blame for their fucked up lives in the grandiose way that he did.....He died for the right of all comedians to say fuck during their acts. Because of Lenny Bruce we can all say fuck whenever and whereever we please. This has made us all much happier and complete.