Crisis of Cool

posted 11 May 2006

The sudden discussion of cool going on across Afterlife is missing a vital point. We seem to be repeatedly touching on the fact that none of us seem to give much of a shit about MySpace. Well, I have a profile, of course, because if it's on the Internet I have a profile on it, and Karinski has a profile, and unlike me she actually uses hers properly, to find out about new music. But membership of MySpace doesn't make you cool. In fact, it's not even relevant.

"Coolness" is shorthand for "the respect of your peers". If all your peers are on MySpace, therefore, it is vitally important that you join up as well. This is why I'm on it (I have too many webbed-up friends not to be) and why Karinski is on it (it's vital for discovering new music). But if your peers aren't on it, then you don't need to be. In fact, a sixty year old granny on myspace wouldn't be cool, she would be sad. MySpace is for the young and musically avant-garde. We're not either of those groups anymore, but that doesn't make us uncool. It just makes us part of a different peer-group.

So, who are your peers, the ones you care what they think of you? Well, for me it's the Afterlife lot, it's a certain subset of my co-workers, and it's a smattering of other people across the world and the web with whom I'm in regular contact. In that particular group, I like to think I have their respect, for a variety of reasons that have nothing to do with my taste in music. Some people like my dancing. Some merely find me interesting conversation. In some circles -- would you belive -- my modest technical skills, collection of domain names and their combined web traffic makes me so blindingly cool you wouldn't believe.

So screw humility and admissions of uncoolness. I'm not just cool, I'm unbelievably cool. I'm so hip I have trouble seeing over my pelvis. And so are you lot, and you rest assured I'm an authority on this, because I'm cool.