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Thread: Why Is America So Intent Upon Ugliness?

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    Default Why Is America So Intent Upon Ugliness?

    Recently, I found an old, musty, yellowed book in a secondhand book shop called Vagabonding in America by a guy named Ed Buryn. It's a guidebook, written for the hippie generation, on how to hitchhike across the country. In it, Buryn laments our lack of reverence for this land:

    "Early-day American was a fantasy out of a Tolkien novel, an actual Middle Earth. From it's sparsely populated eastern seaboard to the west lay a virgin land, unknown and unmatched. Settlers were hemmed in by mountains and near-impenetrable forests for a thousand miles. Beyond that were the Great Plains and beyond that the Great Mountains and beyond that the Great Ocean. It stretched vast, pure and unknown, filled with strange wonders, peopled by mysterious civilizations. A new world full of treasures and hope... Today, the frontiers have vanished, the unknown territory has disappeared... Today, the only enclaves of original America are the national parks and forests, yet the destructive process continues. Tourists pour in, and 'developers' press in to suck the last juices."

    One of my teenage dreams was to make a roadtrip across the contiguous U.S. I romanticized the freedom of the road, the American wilderness, all that hippie crap... yet, the more I've gotten to see of this country, the more I want to vomit. So much of this country hurts to look at. Our cities are concrete assaults on the eye; buildings, overpasses, vacant lots, garbage. Every year, more and more structures fester up one on top of another, designed and constructed with no regard for harmonizing the already existing structures, or with any sese of scale or balance. Outside the cities, suburban sprawl has obscured some of the most beautiful terrains the east and west coasts have to offer. Decrepit, derilect, delapidated buildings litter the landscape, neither to be repaired or demolished. Gaudy monuments to consumer culture are ubiqitous and inescapable. Vast parking lots are draped over beautiful glades and fields. Does anyone actually like living like this?? Does no one find the neverending onslaught of ugliness a depressing drain of enthusiasm about life?

    In my nearby Baltimore, there is one of the most obnoxiously ugly structures I've ever seen: an abandoned theatre called the Morris Mechanic. It's an example of an architectural movement called Brutalism (also found in the D.C. Metro), whose proponents should have been repeatedly kicked in the crotch for depressing and doubly impoverishing the already poor communities they inflicted their work upon:

    What the hell, America? Where has your respect and appreciation of the earth gone? Where have your aesthetic instincts gone? You weren't always this way. The present-day Times Square looks like a clusterfuck of pop-up ads, right out of a bad webpage from the 90s. But this is what it used to look like:

    WTF happened? Is it our credo of rugged individualism that deifies self-made industrialists that has eroded any sense of civic pride and commitment to community? Is it that we've progressively grown more estranged from the land underneath our societal debris, and thus become inured and complacent to ugliness? Are we so myopically spellbound by our matrices of self-contained suburbia that we've forgotten (or no longer care) about what lies beyond the confines of the nearest interstate? Seriously... why is America so fucking ugly?
    "How could we forget those ancient myths that stand at the beginning of all races, the myths about dragons that at the last moment are transformed into princesses? Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love."
    -- Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet

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    cheer up, it could have been worse. here's what i have to put up with:



    Netherlands' architecture is so post-modernly fugly that we're internationally famous for it.

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    ^ That IS pretty ugly. As ugly as America is, at least our conservatism saves us from some of the monstrosities I've seen in Europe. Still, your cities are at least cleaner.
    "How could we forget those ancient myths that stand at the beginning of all races, the myths about dragons that at the last moment are transformed into princesses? Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love."
    -- Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet

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    I like those kinds of buildings...
    Quote Originally Posted by jxrtes View Post
    betas should be kept in zoos for children to stare and throw pop corn at.

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    Really? They look so cold and impersonal to me.
    "How could we forget those ancient myths that stand at the beginning of all races, the myths about dragons that at the last moment are transformed into princesses? Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love."
    -- Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet

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    Ugly is the new aesthetic. Ironically. I even find myself deliberately looking for tumblrs with photos of crude urban scenes, ramshackle buildings, industry, and photos of utilitarian stuff. I blame it on the German in me. Ex: http://yiannosland.tumblr.com/
    http://areaofinterest.com/ - though this one is more focused on textures found everyday and is an exemplar of photography that is rooted in Si. Both blogs are probably showcases of SLI photographers.

    But it's like Carl Sandburg's poetry glorifying the mundane and the ugly, though the textures in the second one are pretty nice looking.
    Life's a bitch and she's got me pussy whipped.

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    For the reason American churches have the aethetic of a hotel.

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    Everyone needs a Calatrava




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    Haha, Kansas City isn't exactly the most beautiful place on earth but some of the architecture here isn't bad. I haven't actually seen this one, but the downtown library looks like this. Interesting at least.



    Or the Nelson Atkins Museum





    But then again we also have this monstrosity

    Moonlight will fall
    Winter will end
    Harvest will come
    Your heart will mend

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    I work at the Nelson Atkins.

    "The Monstrosity" is magnificantly monsterous - truly a thing of awe. From the inside, it is like a Ferrari.
     
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    i love the kansas city library! at first i didnt think it was real.

    the only thing that immediately comes to mind in minneapolis is the walker art center:


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    This is Kallio district, Helsinki.

    Imagine those streets filled with merry drunken people, thai massagers, bars, shady joint circles, police, artists, working class, street artists, meth junkies, punk rockers, convicts, hippies, skinheads (the better kind), pushers and chicks with canvas shoes.

    I love Kallio and Kallio loves me.

    It's the experience living in a place so grim and cold that the people have to make up the most of it by getting merrily warm drunk! And the disorder will follow..!

    Finnish architechture in countries is about getting your very own Moomin house equipped with ugly pastel colors, like orangish yellow, cyan and red.


    I'm more of a big city boy. As if Finland would have enough population to have metropolises.
    “I tell you, freedom and human rights in America are doomed. The U.S. government will lead the American people in — and the West in general — into an unbearable hell and a choking life. - Osama bin Laden

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    i still don't see anything beating the Chinese giant turd:



    and then people wonder why these "ghost cities" don't get occupied.

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    I think the modern day Times Square is beautiful, especially at night. New York City is a wonderful and gorgeous city to me, and I would love to live there someday. All I have are my childhood memories.

    However, Denver is pretty badass, too. I think it looks way better today compared to, say, the ugly architecture of 1898.

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    NYC is the greatest city in the world....

    And I think a lot of people do like living in this.

    The alternative has never been what people think it is.

    This is the alternative, not some magical pastoral wonderland. But backwater wasteland.



    I lived here, and my grandmother died there in 2008. And before that she lived in a mud hut.

    I was a teenager in American suburban wasteland, I prefer the DC ghetto I lived in with sex shops and liquor store on every corner to that. It's far worse than anything American cities offer, esp a place like NYC, and it's not because of the architecture but rather the people. I much prefer the billboards and lights of a city to the McMansions and cul-de-sac prisons.

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    Holy shit

    It all makes sense now

    hkkmr is a 3w2 sp/sx

    Game Over
    But, for a certainty, back then,
    We loved so many, yet hated so much,
    We hurt others and were hurt ourselves...

    Yet even then, we ran like the wind,
    Whilst our laughter echoed,
    Under cerulean skies...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gilly View Post
    Holy shit

    It all makes sense now

    hkkmr is a 3w2 sp/sx

    Game Over
    I'm not a 3, I'm a 5. But my tritype is 3-5-8.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hkkmr View Post
    NYC is the greatest city in the world....
    Why do you say that? I used to worship New York. When I lived in Jersey, it was "the City" -- a towering refuge of sophistication and chaos, the veritable center of the world. I dreamed of living there. But, after going there year after year, I realized that New York as Gotham, the mythic metropolis of yore, has long been dead. Gentrification has stripped it of its character; it has priced out its ethnic communities, its artists and musicians, its young people, its old people, its prostitutes... everything that would make it even remotely interesting. New York now has almost NOTHING that you cannot find in any other city in the country. Seriously. Nowadays, Times Square is nothing but a crowded, open-air suburban megamall, with chain restaurants, hotels, and stores that you can find in any Midwestern metropolitan area.

    Yes, there are some great people there. But there are great people in a lot of places.
    "How could we forget those ancient myths that stand at the beginning of all races, the myths about dragons that at the last moment are transformed into princesses? Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love."
    -- Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet

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    Quote Originally Posted by wookie View Post
    Ugly is the new aesthetic. Ironically. I even find myself deliberately looking for tumblrs with photos of crude urban scenes, ramshackle buildings, industry, and photos of utilitarian stuff. I blame it on the German in me. Ex: http://yiannosland.tumblr.com/
    http://areaofinterest.com/ - though this one is more focused on textures found everyday and is an exemplar of photography that is rooted in Si. Both blogs are probably showcases of SLI photographers.

    But it's like Carl Sandburg's poetry glorifying the mundane and the ugly, though the textures in the second one are pretty nice looking.
    That reminds me of a phenomenon that I got obsessed with called "urban exploration" where people would go explore abandoned, decaying buildings. Some of the photography is gorgeous, actually. My favorite site for this stuff is Opacity:


    "How could we forget those ancient myths that stand at the beginning of all races, the myths about dragons that at the last moment are transformed into princesses? Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love."
    -- Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet

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    Well, as an infp, you see through the veil.

    We are conditioned to live in our heads and our egos and try to figure out a way to exploit people from the distance to make more money for ourselves. Now, some people wouldn't call it exploitation (and it isn't, I'm being way too harsh) they would call it a win-win situation. But we know the real truth that it's more like WIN-win. With the consumer winning in a smaller-case way and the creator winning in an uppercase way. The creator is always in a more advantageous position than the consumer, because the best philosophers had it right: Life is what you write it to be. Life is what you make of it.

    Anyways, we are taught to live inside our heads without really much care or concern with what we are doing to other people externally. As long as we don't murder anybody, the government is told to BUTT OUT. Everybody makes a big fuss on how other people see them, but true abuse and love has a physicality.

    And so you actually pay attention to physical objects which is what most people don't really do, they instead kind of go through life in a zombified state. It is uncomfortable to wake up though, because you have to notice the ugliness. In this country we have so many freedoms and you can chase your own dreams and be HAPPY- which means most people are in their comfortable pillow-y wolrds and aren't noticing the shit around them. And I know I said, just because shit is real doesn't mean you smear your face in it. But but... you as an infp just see things well, without the drama and syrup and you know when something is hot or not or looks good or not and if only all of life could be as pretty as hollywood, but its this ideal they project to us so we go out and then buy the dvds at walmart. Did you ever notice the dvds are harder to steal from stores than that plastic junky crap? They understand that everything is about the war of the mind. And even deeper they don't want you to care about physical external things like buildings they want you to care about some huge inner conflict.

    I don't think your question can be answered. Your question can only invoke more questions. As an infp, I have a superiority complex. I realized I sounded arrogant in my post but I think if all infp males held hands and circled around the world, we would instantly levitate and create the most amazing beautiful work of art that would stun people so much it would be that gorgeous. And then the dust would have to settle or we would narcissistically destroy ourselves, we would have to come down to earth eventually but man it would be so great, if only for a little while.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BulletsAndDoves View Post
    Well, as an infp, you see through the veil.
    Sorry, bro. But I stopped reading after this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by munenori2 View Post
    Haha, Kansas City isn't exactly the most beautiful place on earth but some of the architecture here isn't bad. I haven't actually seen this one, but the downtown library looks like this. Interesting at least.


    I love this! I wish more buildings were whimsical like this one.
    "How could we forget those ancient myths that stand at the beginning of all races, the myths about dragons that at the last moment are transformed into princesses? Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love."
    -- Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet

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    Quote Originally Posted by Baby View Post
    Why do you say that? I used to worship New York. When I lived in Jersey, it was "the City" -- a towering refuge of sophistication and chaos, the veritable center of the world. I dreamed of living there. But, after going there year after year, I realized that New York as Gotham, the mythic metropolis of yore, has long been dead. Gentrification has stripped it of its character; it has priced out its ethnic communities, its artists and musicians, its young people, its old people, its prostitutes... everything that would make it even remotely interesting. New York now has almost NOTHING that you cannot find in any other city in the country. Seriously. Nowadays, Times Square is nothing but a crowded, open-air suburban megamall, with chain restaurants, hotels, and stores that you can find in any Midwestern metropolitan area.

    Yes, there are some great people there. But there are great people in a lot of places.
    I never thought of Times Square as New York City, but the parts of New York that matters are still there. There is still so much in NYC that can't be found anywhere else. To be replicated but not found. Central park, Chinatown, some of the neighborhoods that have gentrified have moved to Brooklyn and Queens but it's not like they're gone.

    NYC has always represented money, it's always been a place of opportunity, commerce, the desire for a better life. It's been a huge billboard for whatever people have lived there and whoever is living there, you just might not understand the script. But in that mix is everything you can imagine. I've never really seen NYC as anything more than the dollar sign, but for all the evils that money brings to the world, it can also brings people together in a tension filled high wire act.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hkkmr View Post
    I never thought of Times Square as New York City, but the parts of New York that matters are still there. There is still so much in NYC that can't be found anywhere else. To be replicated but not found. Central park, Chinatown, some of the neighborhoods that have gentrified have moved to Brooklyn and Queens but it's not like they're gone.

    NYC has always represented money, it's always been a place of opportunity, commerce, the desire for a better life. It's been a huge billboard for whatever people have lived there and whoever is living there, you just might not understand the script. But in that mix is everything you can imagine. I've never really seen NYC as anything more than the dollar sign, but for all the evils that money brings to the world, it can also brings people together in a tension filled high wire act.
    You have such a depressing view on life.
    But, for a certainty, back then,
    We loved so many, yet hated so much,
    We hurt others and were hurt ourselves...

    Yet even then, we ran like the wind,
    Whilst our laughter echoed,
    Under cerulean skies...

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    Times Square just makes commercialism just so over the top it becomes beautiful. Signed is a capitalism critic.

    Very beautiful pics, Parkster.

    I still refuse to call you baby, babe.
    “I tell you, freedom and human rights in America are doomed. The U.S. government will lead the American people in — and the West in general — into an unbearable hell and a choking life. - Osama bin Laden

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gilly View Post
    You have such a depressing view on life.
    I don't think it depresses me.
    I think there's beauty in that whole mess.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Baby View Post
    I love this

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    Quote Originally Posted by hkkmr View Post
    I don't think it depresses me.
    I think there's beauty in that whole mess.
    This!
    “I tell you, freedom and human rights in America are doomed. The U.S. government will lead the American people in — and the West in general — into an unbearable hell and a choking life. - Osama bin Laden

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    "From it's sparsely populated eastern seaboard..."

    Obviously a piece of garbage. No decent book would have such a horribly misplaced apostrophe.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aquagraph View Post
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    Quote Originally Posted by Director Abbie View Post
    "From it's sparsely populated eastern seaboard..."

    Obviously a piece of garbage. No decent book would have such a horribly misplaced apostrophe.
    One thing I like about you is that you are a grammar nazi. Feel free to correct me anytime.
    “I tell you, freedom and human rights in America are doomed. The U.S. government will lead the American people in — and the West in general — into an unbearable hell and a choking life. - Osama bin Laden

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    Quote Originally Posted by hkkmr View Post
    I'm not a 3, I'm a 5. But my tritype is 3-5-8.
    6w5 ftw.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hkkmr View Post
    I've never really seen NYC as anything more than the dollar sign, but for all the evils that money brings to the world, it can also brings people together in a tension filled high wire act.
    That... seems like a boring conception of NYC. When I think of New York, I think of Lincoln Center (still extant), Harlem (unrecognizable), CBGB (gone), Beat and Hippie-era Greenwich Village (gone), Jackson Heights (still extant), street performers (still around, thankfully... but most commute from Jersey), Coney Island (still around, but you'll need to head to Atlantic City to get a taste of its former weirdness)... that sort of thing. Yes, Wall Street, too. But other cities manage to maintain their weirdness while getting wealthier. London, for instance, is not as homogenized at New York. Money has had a stultifying effect on that city.

    Quote Originally Posted by dolphin View Post
    I love this
    There are so many good ones on that page. Here's some more for you:





    Quote Originally Posted by Director Abbie View Post
    "From it's sparsely populated eastern seaboard..."

    Obviously a piece of garbage. No decent book would have such a horribly misplaced apostrophe.
    Don't worry. It was a typo on my part. The actual book has the correct spelling. lmao @ my B.A. in English.
    "How could we forget those ancient myths that stand at the beginning of all races, the myths about dragons that at the last moment are transformed into princesses? Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love."
    -- Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet

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    Quote Originally Posted by BulletsAndDoves View Post
    Well, as an infp, you see through the veil.

    We are conditioned to live in our heads and our egos and try to figure out a way to exploit people from the distance to make more money for ourselves. Now, some people wouldn't call it exploitation (and it isn't, I'm being way too harsh) they would call it a win-win situation. But we know the real truth that it's more like WIN-win. With the consumer winning in a smaller-case way and the creator winning in an uppercase way. The creator is always in a more advantageous position than the consumer, because the best philosophers had it right: Life is what you write it to be. Life is what you make of it.

    Anyways, we are taught to live inside our heads without really much care or concern with what we are doing to other people externally. As long as we don't murder anybody, the government is told to BUTT OUT. Everybody makes a big fuss on how other people see them, but true abuse and love has a physicality.

    And so you actually pay attention to physical objects which is what most people don't really do, they instead kind of go through life in a zombified state. It is uncomfortable to wake up though, because you have to notice the ugliness. In this country we have so many freedoms and you can chase your own dreams and be HAPPY- which means most people are in their comfortable pillow-y wolrds and aren't noticing the shit around them. And I know I said, just because shit is real doesn't mean you smear your face in it. But but... you as an infp just see things well, without the drama and syrup and you know when something is hot or not or looks good or not and if only all of life could be as pretty as hollywood, but its this ideal they project to us so we go out and then buy the dvds at walmart. Did you ever notice the dvds are harder to steal from stores than that plastic junky crap? They understand that everything is about the war of the mind. And even deeper they don't want you to care about physical external things like buildings they want you to care about some huge inner conflict.

    I don't think your question can be answered. Your question can only invoke more questions. As an infp, I have a superiority complex. I realized I sounded arrogant in my post but I think if all infp males held hands and circled around the world, we would instantly levitate and create the most amazing beautiful work of art that would stun people so much it would be that gorgeous. And then the dust would have to settle or we would narcissistically destroy ourselves, we would have to come down to earth eventually but man it would be so great, if only for a little while.
    This reminds me of a quote from a book called When Society Becomes an Addict by A.W. Schaef:
    "The best-adjusted person in our society is the person who is not dead and not alive, just numb, a zombie. When you are dead you’re not able to do the work of society. When you are fully alive you are constantly saying "No" to many of the processes of society, the racism, the sexism, the polluted environment, the nuclear threat, the arms race, drinking unsafe water and eating carcinogenic foods. Thus it is in the interests of our society to promote those things that take the edge off, keep us busy with our fixes, and keep us slightly number out and zombie-like. In this way our modern consumer society itself functions as an addict."
    Not sure if IEIs are more apt to see things this way, but it seems like a lot of young people are becoming disillusioned with the American Dream simply because, in this New Economy, it really has become a dream.
    "How could we forget those ancient myths that stand at the beginning of all races, the myths about dragons that at the last moment are transformed into princesses? Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love."
    -- Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet

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    its true. montreal is beautiful, and more european. america is super anti-aesthetic(and all around anti-pretentious) which is good when you compare it to cultures where appearances/pretenses count a lot(looking at you italy and france), but the entire disdain of appearances means you have to deal with more slovenly people who give far fewer fucks about architecture.
    asd

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    Glorious Member mu4's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Baby View Post
    That... seems like a boring conception of NYC. When I think of New York, I think of Lincoln Center (still extant), Harlem (unrecognizable), CBGB (gone), Beat and Hippie-era Greenwich Village (gone), Jackson Heights (still extant), street performers (still around, thankfully... but most commute from Jersey), Coney Island (still around, but you'll need to head to Atlantic City to get a taste of its former weirdness)... that sort of thing. Yes, Wall Street, too. But other cities manage to maintain their weirdness while getting wealthier. London, for instance, is not as homogenized at New York. Money has had a stultifying effect on that city.
    I never saw New York as weird, it is everything. It's a mix of all of that, fueled by money, opportunity and dreams. And to me that's what makes it a wonderful place.

    I think NYC refuses to meet your expectations, whoever goes there, can survive there does. What's gone's gone but New Yorkers have a attitude that doesn't really let it go away forever, somewhere, some hole in the wall place will arise there.

    New York is not a place to revere it's past, it's always a moving target.

    Imo if anything kills NYC, it's not money, but immigration policy. With a 36% foreign born population, it's one of the defining characteristics of the city. London has become more foreign and flooded with immigrants from Commonwealth states who can easily move there. Now about 1/3 of Londoner's are from outside of Britain.

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    Quote Originally Posted by heath View Post
    its true. montreal is beautiful, and more european. america is super anti-aesthetic(and all around anti-pretentious) which is good when you compare it to cultures where appearances/pretenses count a lot(looking at you italy and france), but the entire disdain of appearances means you have to deal with more slovenly people who give far fewer fucks about architecture.
    I've never been there, but Montreal looks beautiful in pictures. Sad. I wish people would realize there's nothing pretentious about wanting things not to look like crap. Americans have sort of fashioned their own aesthetic out of slovenliness. Oddly enough, you see young people walking around Europe trying to emulate the casual American look... and not quite succeeding because it's still too put-together, lol.

    Quote Originally Posted by hkkmr View Post
    I never saw New York as weird, it is everything. It's a mix of all of that, fueled by money, opportunity and dreams. And to me that's what makes it a wonderful place.

    I think NYC refuses to meet your expectations, whoever goes there, can survive there does. What's gone's gone but New Yorkers have a attitude that doesn't really let it go away forever, somewhere, some hole in the wall place will arise there.

    New York is not a place to revere it's past, it's always a moving target.

    Imo if anything kills NYC, it's not money, but immigration policy. With a 36% foreign born population, it's one of the defining characteristics of the city. London has become more foreign and flooded with immigrants from Commonwealth states who can easily move there.
    I can agree with you. Unfortunately, I'm not as optimistic about New Yorkers not letting its character go away forever. More and more of those holes-in-the-wall are disappearing and they're quickly being replaced by another H&M or whatever. Now that you mention it, immigration policy does probably play a big role in what's currently happening in that city. Another good comparison in addition to London is Toronto. That city would be extremely boring if not for its substantial immigrant community. Still, I think a more sanely priced NYC housing market would bring in some of the more interesting people.
    "How could we forget those ancient myths that stand at the beginning of all races, the myths about dragons that at the last moment are transformed into princesses? Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love."
    -- Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aquagraph View Post
    Times Square just makes commercialism just so over the top it becomes beautiful. Signed is a capitalism critic.

    Very beautiful pics, Parkster.

    I still refuse to call you baby, babe.
    Wait... are you saying you think I'm Parkster?
    "How could we forget those ancient myths that stand at the beginning of all races, the myths about dragons that at the last moment are transformed into princesses? Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love."
    -- Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet

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    Quote Originally Posted by Baby View Post
    Wait... are you saying you think I'm Parkster?
    Ummm... No...

    Well, it's nice that you weren't, that would have meant that I had complimented that humanoid rot. I kinda first thought that he had changed his name in shame but now I really don't know where the original confusion stemmed from.

    Appy-polly-logies.
    “I tell you, freedom and human rights in America are doomed. The U.S. government will lead the American people in — and the West in general — into an unbearable hell and a choking life. - Osama bin Laden

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aquagraph View Post
    Ummm... No...

    Well, it's nice that you weren't, that would have meant that I had complimented that humanoid rot. I kinda first thought that he had changed his name in shame but now I really don't know where the original confusion stemmed from.

    Appy-polly-logies.
    LOL! It's okay. Maybe our avatars are kind of similar? Ours are both kind of nondescript and gray.
    "How could we forget those ancient myths that stand at the beginning of all races, the myths about dragons that at the last moment are transformed into princesses? Perhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love."
    -- Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet

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    Glorious Member mu4's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Baby View Post
    I can agree with you. Unfortunately, I'm not as optimistic about New Yorkers not letting its character go away forever. More and more of those holes-in-the-wall are disappearing and they're quickly being replaced by another H&M or whatever. Now that you mention it, immigration policy does probably play a big role in what's currently happening in that city. Another good comparison in addition to London is Toronto. That city would be extremely boring if not for its substantial immigrant community. Still, I think a more sanely priced NYC housing market would bring in some of the more interesting people.
    I have kinda of given up on parts of Manhattan. I think downtown/midtown/uptown everywhere have been degrading into tourist trap chain restaurant atmosphere. I blame tourists.

    Than again if you go to Tienanmen square, you'll see that people kinda of go crazy for franchises when they haven't had them.

    http://mikesadventuresinthailand.wor...nanmen-square/

    The other side of this equation is when I start getting charged >10 bucks for a bowl of Pho at some noodle bar/music venue.

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