“Pants” on the Web

Over the past week a guy no one had ever heard of burst onto the scene, becoming a national – if not international – celebrity. He vowed to change things, and through his sudden fame he may be doing just that.

I’m talking of course about “General” Larry Platt, who appeared a week ago on American Idol and belted out his song “Pants on the Ground.”

As sometimes happens in today’s hyper-linked world, before you could say “Simon Cowell” Larry’s song became a world-wide phenomenon. People as diverse as Malaysian teenagers and Brett Favre and the Minnesota Vikings were soon singing “Pants on the Ground.”

It never ceases to amaze me how quickly and easily a performance like Larry’s can become such a big deal in so many different places. It reminded me of that guy Matt and his video Dancing 2008, which became a huge sensation a couple years ago.

These things are clearly a phenomenon of today’s world, and can teach us a couple of things:

1 – People from different walks of life and in different places can quickly find a common bond based on something they see and like, and

2 – This kind of thing often doesn’t last all that long. After all, whatever happened to Matt? And how many people regularly go back and look at that music video? (It’s still pretty cool though; I re-watched it while writing this post.)

So when we see some new phenomenon burst on the scene and become the talk of the nation, we need to maintain some perspective. Something that may seem like a big deal today – like, say, the results of a Massachusetts Senate race – may not be such a big deal tomorrow.

It certainly wouldn’t be wise to overreact to it.


About Dave Higgins

I've been interested in current events since at least the mid 1960's, and in ideas from modern science since the early 1990's. My website Quantum Age, which has been online since 1996, presents a basic framework for applying ideas from modern science to today's world. In this blog I discuss current events in the context of that framework.
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