Monday 13 July 2020

More cynical than New Yorkers

Pictured above: Elaine, one of the lead characters in Seinfeld, was ruthless and blunt

When the sitcom Seinfield was all the rage, I used to enjoy the wit and the repartee, as well as the continual references to New Yorkers’ legendary rudeness and cynicism. The writers used to gleefully create situations where the four lead characters would sneer and mock and make snide jokes….the more politically incorrect the better. When an old lady in their building died they pounced on her relatives to take over the lease of her large apartment, pretending a faux concern but in reality sizing up the dimensions of each room with a calculating eye.

This kind of black humour provides a safety valve in which we can express things which are too cruel to verbalise in reality. It works precisely because it is so daring and allows us a form of catharsis.
But comedy is comedy and real life is something else.

Yesterday during l-Istrina I got into a FB debate about President Abela’s role. I happen to think he is doing a great deal in uniting the country – others were not that impressed. Even the entire fundraising came under attack and was described as fake.
When did we become so cynical? Have we lost any ability to empathise and believe in decency and goodness? Ok, granted, there were those yesterday who probably were more concerned about being in the limelight..but the end
result was that thousands of Euros were raised for a good cause. Frankly I am willing to overlook a couple of fat egos if those who need help get the aid they need.
Then on the evening news I heard that the elderly at San Vincenz don’t have any visitors, even on Christmas Day..I found this incredibly shocking. What has happened to us?
At what point has our ability to be humane become obliterated to such an extent that people are able to delete their elderly parents from their
lives? Relationships have become meaningless it seems as self-indulgence and our worship of the Euro come before family and friends.
We have become more cynical than New Yorkers…and there is nothing even remotely funny about it.

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