Tag Archives: Italians

I really miss Jersey Shore

The other night at the restaurant one of my coworkers said to me, “Hey Rob, check out table six. It’s like Jersey Shore over there,” and I was like, “Huh? What?” and he was like, “Table six. Jersey Shore,” and I did what I always do when I don’t understand something for the second time in a row, I fake a smile, totally pretending that not only did I understand, but I really got it, and I start like nodding in approval, maybe throwing in a convincing fake laugh.

But it bugged me, not getting what he was talking about, so I took a stroll by table six and I saw them, the customers, the giant haircuts, the bronzed skin, the Ed Hardy t-shirts. And I was like, oh, Jersey Shore, GTL, cabs are here, t-shirt time, smush room, Jersey Shore. So I smiled to myself, because I got it, I got what my coworker was talking about. I always like knowing what’s going on, getting people’s jokes. But then I got really sad, because why didn’t I get that joke immediately? Are we that far removed from Jersey Shore already? Since when did Pauly D and the gang become completely irrelevant?

jersey shore

It feels like it was just yesterday, MTV started this new reality show that turned into a cultural phenomenon almost overnight. Everybody was talking about Snooki, about the Situation, about these seven Italian Americans sharing a small house right on the beach. The New York Times, The New Yorker, all of my favorite newspapers and magazines were printing write-ups on the show’s success, examining its impact on our culture, exploring the myriad ways in which this unique group of people liked to party and show off on TV.

They went to the gym. That was something they did. Although the Situation claimed his abs were the highlight of the group’s physical fitness, none of them were really out of shape, and Ronnie was bigger than the Incredible Hulk. They tanned. That was another thing they did. They tanned on the beach, they supplemented their natural vitamin D intake by spending time at tanning salons. They did their laundry, like every day. When they said “fresh to death,” they meant it, like I think it was kind of a threat, a way of saying, if these t-shirts aren’t fresh, we’ll kill you.

And now it’s over. It’s beyond over. The Jersey Shore sensation burnt so bright yet so fast that there’s nothing left. Which is kind of sad. Is this how life gets? You get older, things get cool, but then all of the sudden they’re not cool, and you’re stuck here on your computer, thinking about when it was cool, wondering, is it me? Am I just not getting it?

For a while I thought it was just going to be this never ending ride straight up, getting better and better each season. They went to Jersey. They went to Miami. Back to Jersey. Italy. Holy shit Italy was awesome. Remember that time Sammy punched Ronnie in the face? “Are you friends with her?” “Yes.” Punch. That wasn’t like a frustrated little slap. That was like, I’m looking for a specific answer from you, I’m also conscious of the fact that everything we say and do is being filmed, yet I cannot contain the rage boiling inside, and so I’m going to punch you in the face as hard as I can.

Man, I haven’t thought about Jersey Shore in probably close to a year now. The theme song started playing in my head, “Get crazy, get wild,” but that was it. I think I forgot the rest of the lyrics already. “If you wanna have fun we’ll do something …” was that it? Really?

Are they still technically famous? How long do you have to be out of the public eye to not be considered famous anymore? If Vinnie, or even better, if Angelina were to come into my restaurant, would anybody say anything? Would she say anything? Would she act like a celebrity? Man, that’s got to be tough, to be the focus of such intense public scrutiny, and then like two years later it’s just back to being some regular person.

They’ve got to bring it back. They should do it sooner rather than later. The whole series was never given a chance to rest and mature while it was popular. They were sent from city to city, chasing summers around the globe, unrelenting in their partying. Usually it takes like ten years for a reunion to come up, naturally, organically, but I don’t think we need that with Jersey Shore. It’s been a year, everybody forgot about them, and TV is suffering. The Jersey Shore is trying to bounce back from the hurricane, right? What better way to introduce the comeback than by getting the gang back together?

If not then, guys, does anybody want to hang out sometime? I’m down to party, you know, now that you’re not famous anymore. It’s not weird for me to ask, right? Now that you’re just regular? Let’s do it, I’ll buy some beer, I have Can Jam, that would be fun, right? Guys?

Hey it’s summertime! Let’s go to the beach! Let’s go to the beach and have some summertime fun!

It’s summertime and I’m always thinking every time I have a day off that I’m supposed to go to the beach. Like I really should, like I have to or something. But, I don’t know, I just don’t get the whole beach thing. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had some great times at the beach, but only if I’m staying at a hotel that’s like directly on the beach. I’ll go straight from my room, right out to the beach, maybe do some swimming, some laying around, sandcastles, obviously. And then when I’m done I just go right up to my room and take a shower and it’s like I was never at the beach in the first place.

Because while it’s fun being at the beach, everything else about the whole process is really annoying. I live like an hour away from the beach. I’d have to get up super early and pack all of my stuff. And here’s where I’m already totally lost. Because am I supposed to go to the beach in my bathing suit? I guess, right? Because, what am I supposed to do, change at the beach? Where? I can just see it already happening where I get there and there’s nowhere to change, so I have to do this really weird move where I wrap a towel around my waist and take off my pants or my shorts and then put my bathing suit on. I’m just squirming and it’s really hard to maneuver, and the towel keeps slipping. And everyone’s looking at me like, what has this guy never been to the beach before?

But if you go to the beach in your bathing suit, are you supposed to go home in your bathing suit also? I’m probably going to go swimming. And it’s going to be all sandy and itchy. So for an hour I have to sit there and pretend like I’m comfortable, while I’m really itchy and sticky and sweaty and just feeling grosser by the second?And there’s so much stuff to bring. It’s like going on a mini vacation. So much unpacking and packing and repacking and carrying. It’s not an easy thing to do. And there’s a ton of preparation involved that the eventual time actually spent on the beach hardly seems worth it. I’d be happy at the beach for like maybe like two hours. That sounds cool. I could do a little reading, go for a swim, lay out for a second, and that’s it. It’s like going to the park. I don’t feel like spending all day at the park. But if you spend two hours packing, an hour travelling, another hour unpacking and repacking and setting up and disassembling, you’re really at this point invested in the beach, required to spend at least five hours at the beach, just to make it seem like you spent your time at least somewhat wisely. So then you have to think about what you’re going to do for those extra three hours. Aren’t you going to get hungry? Thirsty? OK, so now you have to bring a cooler, and that’s heavy. Don’t forget the ice. And cups. You know what? I think we have to bring a trash bag for all of the trash. Aren’t we going to get really sunburned after five hours? Maybe we should bring an umbrella. Isn’t it tax season already? All right, we have to go to accountant’s house and pick him up. Don’t forget extra copies of those W-2s.

No, I hate complaining. I’m not trying to be a complainer. Like I said, the beach can be a lot of fun. It’s just really inaccessible and so much work. Plus, if it’s a really great beach day, do you think you’re the only person who has the bright idea to go to the beach? No, it’s you and every other person with nothing to do. And so you’re stepping on cigarette butts that always retain their heat whe they’re buried in the sand. You’re getting sand kicked in your face by little kids. That big Italian guy next to you is blasting club music really loud and looking at you, almost begging you to say something. You want to start something? Huh brah? Huh punk?

I’m just kidding. I love Italians. I love Super Mario. I love spaghetti. I don’t care if Marco Polo brought it over from China, it’ll always be Italian food to me. At least the Italians aren’t a bunch of communists like the Chinese. I do love Chinese dumplings better than gnocchi, though. Sorry, Italians. You make the better pasta, but they make the better dumplings. I wonder: if China and Italy joined forces to make one country, would they call it Chitaly? Yeah, definitely. The Chitalians would be a great people, masters of both pasta and dumplings. Don’t you think a General Tso’s inspired pizza would be delicious? You’ve had buffalo chicken pizza, right? Well this would be just like that, but Chinese. Or Chitalian. I forgot already. This is all probably never going to happen though.