Cultural ruts are much more common than one would think. I think it is difficult to break out of them because people don’t like stepping out of their comfort zone very easily and mostly everyone already knows what they like and don’t like. Although I can see how it would be important to break out of a cultural rut for your own personal sake. It would help you have a more well rounded repertoire of knowledge and educate you on new topics you may have known nothing about before. I know I have probably been in a cultural rut most of my life. I have not always been interested in the same media my whole life, like my tastes have changed, but never drastically, nor have I ever tried anything consciously outside of my comfort zone. I have been in ruts during relationships with someone because I will blend into their interests and style, and end up liking all of their media for the entirety of the relationship. My own interests have changed with me as i’ve gotten older, but they still have not ever been too alternative or out of the ordinary. I just love the advice the hosts of the podcast give on the ways to break out of a cultural rut. Such as, don’t rely on your friends for recommendations, be ambitious, consciously go outside of your own comfort zone, and go easy on yourself if you don’t like it. It’s definitely some advice I am going to take into consideration as I continue my popular culture usage.
The chosen piece of popular culture that I reviewed is a podcast on NPR titled “Quick Take: Clinton’s Health/’Basket of Deplorables'”. This was one show done on a political podcast called NPR Politics Podcast on the website NPR.org.
I chose to listen to this podcast first of all because I have never in my life listened to a podcast by choice. If I have listened to one it has been because it was assigned in a class and never for fun. I have had friends talk about how much they love listening to podcasts and I know they are pretty popular in our media today, but I have never had any interest in them. Therefore, for this assignment I chose to listen to one and voluntarily expand my horizons of media for the first time. Also I chose a political podcast because I don’t really follow or care about politics, so I thought I would go out of my norm and try an unordinary subject to expand my knowledge on the presidential campaign.
While consuming this new type of media honestly I felt a little bored. The podcast idea is interesting, but personally I enjoy visuals and just listening to voices makes it really hard for me to focus. I found myself getting distracted easily and not paying as much attention as I would have if it was a visual source of media. Also the topic wasn’t the most interesting to me therefore it was also difficult to focus and really be engaged in the podcast. I don’t think I would listen to any more of these podcasts just because I didn’t find it exciting or interesting, but I did learn some new things about what is happening in the presidential campaign and the drama that is happening within it which can be helpful if I chose to vote. I think this podcast isn’t aimed towards any specific audience, but I don’t think it is meant for 20 year old college women either. It is just there for any one really interested in keeping up with the latest news in politics which could be anyone. Unfortunately I am not a part of that audience.
Even though I found this podcast pretty boring because it wasn’t a topic I’m very interested in, it was very informational and caught me up to date with the presidential race. This podcast started by talking about Hilary Clinton’s health. I learned that she has been sick lately because she left a 9/11 memorial service on Sunday abruptly and was seen limping into her car. Her campaign manager a few days before that had told the public that she has pneumonia, but most of the public thinks there is something more going on with her health that she is not telling us. I personally think it is ridiculous how much a politicians life is put under a microscope. Yes, it is important that our president is healthy in order to run our country for many years, but people love making assumptions without barely any information. Everyone deserves some privacy.
The other topic they talked about in this podcast was the controversy of what Hilary Clinton called Donald Trump’s fans deplorables. She said “half of them can be put in a basket of deplorables” and many people found this to be offensive and controversial. Since she has said it she has apologized and regrets saying it, but I think a politician is put under so much pressure because if they say one wrong thing then the entire country attacks them and it is extremely scrutinizing. I think it is hard enough to have your whole life being analyzed every minute of every day, but to have every word you say taken to literally and defensively would be an extremely difficult way to live. This is one of the main reasons I don’t enjoy following politics because most of it is fake and an act, and I believe everyone is just as equally human therefore no one should be judged that much harder than another person. Everyone makes mistakes and no one deserves to have their every move criticized by so many people, even if you are going to be the president of of a country.
(n.d.). Retrieved September 14, 2016, from http://www.npr.org/podcasts/510310/npr-politics-podcast
[The NPR Politics Logo]. (n.d.). Retrieved September 14, 2016.
Hillary Clinton Biography [Portrait of Hillary Clinton]. (n.d.). Retrieved September 14, 2016.