Synthetic fun

A couple nights ago, Gwen was given an invitation to some sort of party at La Zona Rosa. The invitation promised it would be a showcase for new art, fashion, and film. “Could be fun,” she figured, so she accepted and invited me along. We agreed to ride our bikes and meet there.

It turns out to have been kind of a weird event. It was a manufactured party, sponsored by Chrysler behind the fig-leaf of an internal promotional organization called PT Studios. There was another company called Gen Art involved in some capacity.

The vibe was very strange. Zona Rosa, which is a big, barnlike club, had been re-dressed to look like some kind of futuristic boite. Very loud dance music stymied most attempts at wry commentary. The minute I walked in, I thought “This is not my scene.” After looking at the other people, I realized that it wasn’t anyone’s scene, in fact. There were all kinds of people there, and the only thing they had in common was that they had somehow been invited. Some people clearly just came straight from work without any particular expectations. Some people clearly were treating it as a big event, and had gotten all dolled up. Some people were funky, some were sleek fashionistas, some were bums like me, some were regular corporate working stiffs. There was little sense of excitement in the air.

The real point of the event was apparently to manufacture enthusiasm about the new PT Cruiser Turbo. Several were parked outside, kitted out with dress-up kits and the like. Indeed, there was a brief fashion show (that somehow seemed like it belonged in an episode of Aqua Teen Hunger Force. There were some photographs hanging on the wall. There was a room set up for screening three shorts–we watched two, one of which was amazingly pretentious, the other which was cute, but also an obvious Chrysler promotional film.