Sex, Drugs, and Rock n’Roll : A motto from an antique era once viewed as wicked, but today seems mere polite party conversation. The phrase elicited witty remarks as response, cheers or frowns of disdain, and ultimately indicated with what side of the Great Divide you identified. Some of us thought American Culture was best served as a T Shirt and a Bumper Sticker. We liked our messages short and sweet in the good ol’ You Essay. We learned that from the boys on Madison Avenue. They gave us a cool new car every year. Shark fins and bigger engines. Color on our TVs, more speakers for our stereos, faster food and fool’s formulas for impressing The Babes. Ads informed the girls what to wear to be cool, and together we showed the squares how to rock. Some said be a jerk and go to work– Life is a banquet. Don’t Bogart peace n’love. No more war. Tune In and Turn on. Stick with the winners. Greed is Good, and ultimately– the motto of passive aggression “whatever.”
Meanwhile other folks still punched in, focused on practical matters, paid bills and taxes, believed in honesty, and kept it all going for the rest of us.
We enjoyed the fruits of our ancestral labors, but those good folks are gone. . . .
The messages are so mixed that even our greatest Semiotics Scholars, Media Masters of the one per cent solution, might find a true translation tricky. Perhaps choosing our natural need to explore would serve us better now than our compulsion to acquire, control, and cover up.