Some things come my way that I feel like FWBA readers should know about- nearly all of that comes in the form of music, but today, it’s a book! My good friend Nick Stenson passed along a digital copy of his pal’s new book First World Problems: 101 Reasons Why the Terrorists Hate Us.
For anyone who’s used the phrase “First World Problems” before, this book is for you. I’m just waiting to see folks like myself discover it at Urban Outfitters and get pissy because they, of course, were the ones who invented that phrase. Where did it come from anyway?
Well, however it started, author Ben Nesvig certainly perfected it. His authority on Western middle class suffering is incredibly intimate and self-aware, he retells tragedies of receiving an insufficient amount of 25 cent wings, picking the wrong line to stand in at the check out, the perils of Costco, and my personal favorite, “Favorite Indie Band is Becoming Too Popular”
Here’s a little excerpt:
“One of my favorite indie bands, Peter Wolf Crier, is becoming too successful. They’ve been getting press, reviews in Pitchfork, The AV Club, and they were CD of the week at our local indie station, The Current. With their new album, they’ve bee generating a lot of press and even selling out shows.
This is horrible news.
No one needs to know about the sweet harmonies they create. Let’s just keep that a little secret between you and me… and whoever you tell because you probably can’t keep a secret. Don’t ruin this for me, society. You’ve done enough damage.
And step off, Seacrest”
Although it’s totally light humor, I think First World Problems speaks to something a little bigger. We’ve created this sort of complicated society that requires us to abide by social cues and nuances, but like domesticated animals, we’re navigating through a complex jungle, but we’re these delicate neurotic people that find it all insurmountable, just so UGH sometimes, y’know? If you’re seeking relief from the shame you experience after complaining that you’re starving when you ate three hours ago, this is your book. For those of you who don’t have a Kindle, don’t worry- there’s a downloadable version you can read on your computer, because I’m clearly POOR and don’t have a Kindle.