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Irrational Obsessions


Gus Mears

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A thread for discussing things that you love and why you love them, despite all know logic telling you they are shit/uncool.

 

I'm probably not explaining this particularly well, but as an example I have a stonking rod-on for Richard Nixon, he of Watergate fame. I ended up doing a degree in politics solely because I happened to pick up a biography of Nixon when I was 16 and ended up being fascinated. I must own about 20 books on him/his administration.

 

This is my car bumper sticker.

 

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I also recently bought this.

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They are not that funny and certainly not cool. Nixon is neither funny nor cool, but I fucking love him. What things do you like in this vain and more importantly, why do you like them?

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Peter Hitchens. I detest 99% of his politics but there's something so vulnerable about him, I kind of want to give him a hug. I can't shift the image of him as the grumpy, lonely kid at a birthday party who just wants one of the other kids to be his friend.

 

I read practically everything he does (which is a lot) and even when he's coming out with some right bollocks, like his current Twitter thing about dyslexia being a fictional disease created to excuse insufficient teaching methods, I can't get any more annoyed than "Oh tut-tut, Peter".

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Yeah Nixon is a big one here. I have numerous books on the man and Watergate is probably my favourite subject ever.

 

I'd also throw in the history of cartoon Scooby Doo, Thomas the Tank Engine, 90's alcopop Reef and the history of New York.

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The mafia. Specifically the New York Five Families, with some sprinkles of Chicago and other parts of the US thrown in. I have a million books on the subject and so much knowledge on the subject than could ever prove useful. I'm mainly interested in its origins through to the late 90s or so. I don't have a lot of time for the mess it's become in the 21st century, although there isn't a ton of reading material on that. If there was, I'm sure I'd read it.

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The Lawrence Welk Show — primarily after it lost its network deal in the late 60s, and went into first-run syndication for the rest of its run as an original show. It became ossified into a totally unprogressive show, except the weird occasions where they attempted to bring some rock music into the mix and ended up making weird easy listening versions.

 

But I bloody love it. I love the cheesiness. I love the ultra bland musical stylings, even from some total virtuosos — it was a rock solid gig, as long as you didn't piss off Lawrence, so people towed the line. I love the weird bits where they bring up their kids on the show to look uncomfortable. I love old Lawrence, a solid citizen if ever I saw one.

 

And I love the lasses, especially Anacani and Mary Lou Metzger.

 

 

 

I'd absolutely go to one of those sad Welk reunion shows that tour flyover country.

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The mafia is ice cool. We got Goodfellas out of it.

 

I'm a wee bit obsessed with Jack Paar. Once upon a time he was supposedly excellent, but his act was old 30+ years ago (going by him constantly dying a death in the 80s), so despite watching numerous clips and reading so much about him, I've never found him particulalry funny and his stories can go on for ages without much of a pay off. The guy seems right up himself too. Yet I've wasted hours watching him. Irrational obsessions.

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Mafia's one for me too, it all gets repetitive after awhile though. Philly mob is my favourite. John Wayne, Orson Welles and old hollywood are others, can't get enough of that era. Sinatra, Dean Martin etc would probably fit there too. Love Wayne's movies even the rubbish ones and have read many books etc despite his questionable politics. I share an interest in Nixon and JFK too. Pretty much the US in general from the first world war on.

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I'm madly in love with Vice reporter Kim Taylor Bennet. Nobody has even heard of her.

 

Is she the one who pops up on all the Sky Arts documentaries about famous musicians? There's a woman who was the double of her popping up chatting about The Clash, Queen and Johnny Cash. And she was useless - just regurgitated their Wikipedia pages.

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