Hard bargaining to get rid of loans
The average amount owed by student debtors for the college class of 2016 is $37,000. The founder of the Student Loan Report (www.studentloans.net) has surveyed 500 student-loan borrowers to determine the seriousness/desperation of their desires to rid themselves of the loans’ obligations. Student debt, says Drew Cloud, “is a $1.3 trillion issue in the U.S.A.” According to Cloud’s survey: About 27 percent of borrowers would contract Zika virus if it would enable them to rid themselves of loans; 31 percent would give up sex for 10 years; 84 percent would give up watching “Game of Thrones” forever; 78 percent would give up SnapChat forever; 62 percent would give up eating cheese forever; and about 9 percent would give back their degrees.
At the Stanley Kubrick show at the Contemporary Jewish Museum a couple of days ago, I paused to look at clips from “A Clockwork Orange,” an iconic 1971 movie I’d never seen. Forty-five years after its release, it was still pretty shocking.
“Too much violence and not enough sex,” said viewer Gerald Webber in a letter of complaint that was part of the exhibition. In one clip, a weak-looking woman was thrown to the floor by a man brandishing a huge plastic penis-shaped weapon, which he lifted over his head as though he was going to (1) bash her (2) employ it in a more intimate matter. The clip stopped right there, so the victim’s fate remained unknown, at least by me. But Mr. Webber, I think your complaints were unfounded.
1 Robert Weiner was at Valette restaurant in Healdsburg, where the dress code is “smart casual,” and heard one customer telling another, “Men wearing shorts at a nice restaurant is dumb casual.”
1 “The Price Is Right” was offering the big prize of a trip to Rio the other day, reports Joseph Lillis, to stay at “Casa Mosquito.” No thanks.
1 Jennifer Fish, whose Little Free Library was established on Merriewood Drive in Oakland five years ago, has added some features. A photo display featuring pics of neighborhood dogs and cats, “The Library’s Four-legged Patrons,” now includes one cat and 31 dogs. “The cats are not big fans” of the library, she says, but perhaps fewer felines is a result of the abundance of dog walkers that pass the library daily.
Fish says that one of her neighbors has added a redwood bench for library patrons. “My Little Free Library has evolved from a cardboard box of books to a gathering place for my neighbors. I couldn’t be happier,” she writes.
“La Victrola,” under construction at American Steel Studios in Oakland in preparation for Burning Man, is a 35-foottall, 4-ton wood and steel gramophone to be used to “present a curated program of live and recorded musical performances, transporting audiences back to an earlier time of vaudeville, speakeasies, cabarets and the birth of recorded music ... counterpoint to the digital technology and electronic dance music that dominate modern media,” according to its makers. My mind’s ear is hearing decibel duels (will ya turn that thing down?) in the desert.
In celebration of its first anniversary, the Tenderloin Museum is hosting a free community day, from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, July 16, with a full schedule of performances and events celebrating its partnership with other cultural institutions. But that’s not the item.
The item is that in December, citing its attempt “to shift negative perceptions of (the Tenderloin) by highlighting the important role it has played in LGBT activism and countercultural movements,” the Guardian named it among the 10 best new and improved museums in the world. (The range of the list — which includes the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York and the John Wayne Birthplace Museum in Winterset, Iowa — is broad.)
As to the use of emoticons and emoji, are we going back to hieroglyphics? asks Terry Lesyk.
Meanwhile, a survey taken by the Creative Group found that 78 percent of advertising and marketing executives think it “is not appropriate to use emojis and emoticons when communicating with clients and customers.” (Don Draper would not use them.)
Advice from the OfficeTeam, a temp staffing service that warns that the pictorial symbols may “be distracting and appear unprofessional”: “Just say it. When in doubt, rely on words to get your point across.” Or fingers.