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“On a Saturday night this month in a cavernous theater in a casino, an Aziz Ansari I had never seen before strode onstage. Wearing a black leather jacket and skinny jeans, he looked the same, but the old swagger was diminished, replaced by a certain world-weary exasperation.
He began his set with a series of jokes poking fun at progressives who get furious online. He mocked the early summer uproar over cultural appropriation and a white girl from Utah who wore a cheongsam to prom, and sighed at those who criticized “The Simpsons” for the Indian character Apu. Later, he skewered competitive virtue-signaling, describing it as a game of “progressive Candy Crush.” The show’s major theme was contempt for “people trying to outwoke each other” online.
What went unsaid was that since the last time he toured new material, Ansari had become the high-profile subject of an internet furor himself. An anonymous woman had published a detailed article about a date with him and accused him of inappropriate behavior. (Ansari has said that their encounter was consensual.) The article drew viral outrage, an equally forceful backlash and much commentary about dating culture and the #MeToo movement.
Ansari, who will resume his tour of the United States and Canada in February, is now one of several male comics returning to the national stage after facing scrutiny for sexual conduct. T.J. Miller, who has been accused of sexual assault and denied the allegations, is performing around the country. And most famously, Louis C.K., who admitted to misconduct, has been working out new material primarily in short club sets locally, though he did an hour at a club in Long Island on Sunday, presumably laying the groundwork for a special.”
JJ Editor's Daily Picks
"India’s water crisis offers a striking reminder of how climate change is rapidly morphing into a climate emergency. Piped water has run dry in Chennai, the southern state of Tamil Nadu’s capital, and 21 other Indian cities are also facing the..."
"Such a blackout is coming. It is only a matter of time. Again, leaving aside the growing threats of cyber and terrorist attacks upon our power grid, the fact of the matter is that much of our grid is antiquated junk desperately in need of billion."
"In Israel’s early years—even earlier, in fact, during the decades leading up to independence—the kibbutz played an integral role in creating the country’s economic and political infrastructure. Based on a shared economy and hard work..."
"Scarlett Johansson became something of a conservative hero on Friday for speaking out against identity politics. She told As If magazine, in quotes excerpted by the Daily Mail, “You know, as an actor I should be allowed to play any person, or..."
"During the 2012 presidential election, there occurred one of those remarkably rare moments when campaign rhetoric actually clarified a large issue. It happened when Barack Obama, speaking without a written text, spoke from his heart and..."
"IN FEBRUARY, LEAKED software code predicted the demise of the back button on the latest version of Google's Android smartphone. Apple did away with the iPhone's home button in 2017. LG’s latest handset allows users to control their devices..."
"I am in the mosh pit of West Hollywood’s El Rey Theatre, jangly from two cups of Zoe Ministries’ excellent self-branded coffee. Twenty 20-somethings in mom jeans, sneakers, and colorful baggy shirts are singing Disney-radio-inflected anthems..."
"Before the advent of scientific evidence and philosophical guidance on the subject, literary odes to the creative and health benefits of walking flourished. No one has been more tireless in reviving the history of exhortations to join the “Order..."
"Facebook and Twitter feeds were buzzing with discussion after the late-May New York Times article declaring that millennials are no longer interested in marriage. The article’s popularity can be attributed, in part, to the uncomfortable truth it..."
"The run happened — or didn’t — maybe five days into the raw-diet experiment. I had formed a sort of fitness pact with a friend to forgo cooked food, and after days of nothing but salads, almonds, sashimi and black coffee, my body felt taut and..."
"Humans have long sought the elixir of youth, so it is not surprising that even non-scientists closely follow the latest research into aging. But is what most people consider simply a fact of life actually a “disease” that can be cured? Or is..."
"It’s no secret that many Jews are struggling to keep up. More and more, middle and even upper-middle class Jews are finding religion to be an increasingly expensive component of their lives. My husband has a good job and I have a burgeoning..."