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Thread: Quintessence

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    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quintessence

    Quintessence. Yep, it’s a $20 word, but there probably isn’t a better one out there to describe what this thread is about. It means (at least for this thread) – the most typical or representative example.

    The purpose of this thread is to identify and explain why it is you think something or someone is somehow quintessential. The category can be anything of your choosing and coming up with the most novel category is naturally much of the fun behind this exercise.

    Here are a couple of picks to get things started. Feel free to counter any with your own picks (and at least a half-heartedly plausible explanation) or come up with your own..... the most quintessential scotch?...southern politician?...month of the calendar?....Canadian city?....19th century war?....overhyped sporting event?....you name it. One's imagination is the only limit here.

    The Quintessential Third World Nation Peru. Why?
    1. Because it has a proud history of indigenous people who were conquered by a European colonial power (Spain).
    2. The per capita annual income is around US$3,400
    3. Much of the country’s landmass is inhospitable to economic development and human habitation, but conducive to biodiversity.
    4. Has at least one robust guerilla organization (Shining Path) threatening government control.
    5. The nation’s capital (Lima) is a primate city.
    6. Has a 2% population growth rate, with about a third of the population below the age of 16.

    The Quintessential Car 1968 Buick Electra 225.
    1. It was an American vehicle manufactured by General Motors during a decade when the US manufacturing held world dominance.
    2. It was available as a convertible
    3. While ostensibly a ‘luxury’ car, it was still affordable to middle class Americans.
    4. 1968 was the first year vent windows were eliminated.
    5. Had a 401 V-8 engine (that probably never got better than 15 mpg on highway)

    The Quintessential Rock Band Paul Revere & the Raiders.
    1. The band was formed from relative nobodies but enjoyed mainstream success during the gritty period in rock history known as the late 60’s.
    2. The band had an acrimonious split over artistic differences.
    3. Appeared on the cover of Rolling Stone Magazine.
    4. The band had at least one shameless ‘reunion’ tour attempting to cash in on baby boomer nostalgia.
    5. The Raiders were the first rock group signed by Columbia records.
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

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    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    The Quintessential Yooper Town - Houghton. Why?
    • It takes forever to get there.
    • The biggest event of the year is the Winter Festival
    • It is pronounced HOUGHT-ton.
    • The bars out number the churches
    • They have gotten over 30 feet of snow in one season
    • It as been as cold as -30F.
    • The Hockey arena holds more people than the football stadium.
    Not my monkey, not my circus. - Old Polish Proverb

  3. #3
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    The quintessential FAC thread from the ‘Golden Age of Cyburbia’ is this one
    why?

    - The thread was started in 2003 by Tom r
    - Both BKM and el Guapo posted humorous responses on the same thread
    - The topic was silly. Yes, that’s right, entirely silly.
    - RJ’s response had a sexual innuendo
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

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    Cyburbian otterpop's avatar
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    The Quintessential American Handgun

    The Colt Model P. (aka the Peacemaker)

    * Been in production for 135 years.
    * Has not changed (with the exception of the cylinder pin screw) during production.
    * It is well-balanced and easy to shoot.
    * Packs a whallop
    * Equally handy as a club (buffaloing)
    * Reminds you of an exciting period of American history.
    * The weapon of choice of John Wayne (the quinessential American)
    * Looks cool.
    * The revolver was one of the tools historian Walter Prescott Webb listed as essential to settling the American West.
    "I am very good at reading women, but I get into trouble for using the Braille method."

    ~ Otterpop ~

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    Cyburbian Emeritus Bear Up North's avatar
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    The Quintessential 1980s Celebrity Poster

    The Quintessential 1980s Celebrity Poster - Farrah Fawcett

    Smooth and solid 1980s popular culture reference
    Revealing and plunging neckline
    Ultimate 1980s big hair
    Verification of room temperature at photoshoot
    Poster could be held up with one hand

    Bear
    Occupy Cyburbia!

  6. #6
    Unfrozen Caveman Planner mendelman's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Bear Up North View post
    The Quintessential 1980s Celebrity Poster - Farrah Fawcett

    Smooth and solid 1980s popular culture reference
    Revealing and plunging neckline
    Ultimate 1980s big hair
    Verification of room temperature at photoshoot
    Poster could be held up with one hand

    Bear
    I don't think the 1980s was Fawcett's period. The 1970s is more accurate.
    I'm sorry. Is my bias showing?

    Let's not be didactic in this profession, because that is a path to disillusion and irrelevancy.

    Six seasons and a movie!

  7. #7
    Cyburbian ofos's avatar
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    The Quintessential Heavy Metal Band - Spinal Tap

    If you need a rationale, you don't know who Spinal Tap is.
    “Death comes when memories of the past exceed the vision for the future.”

  8. #8
    Cyburbian craines's avatar
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    the quintessential sportbike' Suzuki GSXR 750
    the quintessential pot head-Chong
    the quintessential beer-Bud
    Looking for Sanity
    In this Crazy Land Of Ours

  9. #9
    Cyburbian Plus dandy_warhol's avatar
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    who is the quintessential Cyburbian?
    In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends. -Martin Luther King Jr.

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    Cyburbian ofos's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by dandy_warhol View post
    who is the quintessential Cyburbian?
    Excellent question that I'm not ready to answer but it does bring to mind Quinn The Eskimo (The Mighty Quinn) which is a quintessential Bob Dylan song.
    “Death comes when memories of the past exceed the vision for the future.”

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    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by dandy_warhol View post
    who is the quintessential Cyburbian?
    I actually thought about that one and was prepared to name someone like boiker or savemattoon, but it occurred to me the typical Cyburbian has either no posts or maybe one post to their name and primarily looks at the professional forums seeking specific info.
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

  12. #12
    NIMBY asshatterer Plus Richmond Jake's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by dandy_warhol View post
    who is the quintessential Cyburbian?
    I'm going with Stardarcy.
    RJ is the KING of . The One

  13. #13
    Cyburbian Plus
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    Quote Originally posted by dandy_warhol View post
    who is the quintessential Cyburbian?
    SAW
    I believe it is RJ.
    Oddball
    Why don't you knock it off with them negative waves?
    Why don't you dig how beautiful it is out here?
    Why don't you say something righteous and hopeful for a change?
    From Kelly's Heroes (1970)


    Are you sure you're not hurt ?
    No. Just some parts wake up faster than others.
    Broke parts take a little longer, though.
    From Electric Horseman (1979)

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    Cyburbian TOFB's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by mendelman View post
    I don't think the 1980s was Fawcett's period. The 1970s is more accurate.
    Agreed. She was 1976-78, the years I was dorm bound. I was one of the
    few that dug Kate Jackson, although I was too into Corea, Weather Report, and herbal intro spectrum at the time. .. .

  15. #15
    Unfrozen Caveman Planner mendelman's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by dandy_warhol View post
    who is the quintessential Cyburbian?
    Well, we can certainly do: The Quintessential Cyburbia admin/mod - NHPlanner
    • Has been an active member from practically the beginning
    • Is quick on the draw with fair and balanced "advisements"
    • A nice guy that wants to maintain the highest quality on Cyburbia
    • Is the most hated admin/mod
    I'm sorry. Is my bias showing?

    Let's not be didactic in this profession, because that is a path to disillusion and irrelevancy.

    Six seasons and a movie!

  16. #16
    Cyburbian illinoisplanner's avatar
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    The Quintessential Hair Band: Poison

    Why? Because like most hair bands...
    They started in the early 1980s, but didn't break until the mid-80s, peaked in the late 80s, and stayed on top through 1991, tanking shortly afterward
    They're from the East Coast but made it big on the Sunset Strip
    They wore more makeup and hairspray than anyone, but could still collectively kick your ass
    Their biggest hit was a power ballad
    Their guitarist was a coke addict and their bassist was an alcoholic
    They re-united and went on tour again to moderate success in the 2000s, on a wave of 80s nostalgia
    They've released a covers album and a bunch of compilations that are all the same
    Their lead singer was featured on a reality TV show
    Their music went from glitzy pop-rock in the 1980s to a darker, bluesier, harder rock in the 1990s to try and keep up with the times; this won them only good marks with the critics, but not commerical success
    "Life's a journey, not a destination"
    -Steven Tyler

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    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    The Quintessential Chick Flick: is "Pretty Woman" Why?

    - Julia Roberts is the alluring female lead
    - the male lead character (played by Richard Gere) is powerful yet sensitive
    - it's a romantic comedy
    - the general public seems oblivious that the plot was lifted directly from the Quintessential Chick flick from the previous generation 'My Fair Lady'
    - boy meets girl, boy falls in love, boy loses girl, boy gets girl back
    - okay, there's this chick I know who cries every time with certain movies and she cried watching this one. So that's pretty irrefutable proof.


    Hmmmm...now I'm wondering, though, if "Jerry McGuire" might not actually be a better choice for Quintessential Chick Flick. What do chicks think?

    Quote Originally posted by illinoisplanner
    Their guitarist was a coke addict and their bassist was an alcoholic
    It now occurs to me that Paul Revere & Raiders may not be the best choice for Quintessential Rock Band - no tales of substance abuse surround them!
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

  18. #18
    Cyburbian DecaturHawk's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    The Quintessential Chick Flick: is "Pretty Woman"
    No. I am no chick, but I am quite certain that the all-time quintessential chick flick is "Beaches."
    • It has Bette Midler in it.
    • It has an emotional and sad death.
    • It has two chick best friends.
    • It has romances with bad men (all true chick flicks involve romances with bad men).
    • Chicks dig it.
    • Guys can't stand it.
    By far the most mind-numbing chick flick of all time.
    SOME say the world will end in fire, Some say in ice.
    From what I’ve tasted of desire
    I hold with those who favor fire.
    But if it had to perish twice, I think I know enough of hate
    To know that for destruction ice
    Is also great
    And would suffice.

    Robert Frost (1874–1963) (From Harper’s Magazine, December 1920.)

  19. #19
    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by DecaturHawk View post
    No. I am no chick, but I am quite certain that the all-time quintessential chick flick is "Beaches."
    • It has Bette Midler in it.
    • It has an emotional and sad death.
    • It has two chick best friends.
    • It has romances with bad men (all true chick flicks involve romances with bad men).
    • Chicks dig it.
    • Guys can't stand it.
    By far the most mind-numbing chick flick of all time.
    Well said.
    Not my monkey, not my circus. - Old Polish Proverb

  20. #20
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by DecaturHawk View post
    No. I am no chick, but I am quite certain that the all-time quintessential chick flick is "Beaches."
    [snip]
    By far the most mind-numbing chick flick of all time.
    I've never seen it, but from the sounds of it Female Empowerment figures in prominently. Seems there's a fork in the road where chick flicks are concerned. Variety A features tradtional sappy romantic themes (Nottinghill, You've Got Mail, Sleepless in Seattle, etc.) and variety B feature Empowerment themes (Fried Green Tomatoes, 9 to 5, Thelma & Louise, etc). I think the Variety A movies, however, are more typical of the chick flick genre as a whole.
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

  21. #21
    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    The Quintessential Chick Flick: is "Pretty Woman"
    Quote Originally posted by DecaturHawk View post
    No. I am no chick, but I am quite certain that the all-time quintessential chick flick is "Beaches."
    I was under the impression that the all-time (as in best ever made) quintessential chick flick was An Affair To Remember, as referenced in Sleepless In Seattle
    • It has Cary Grant in it.
    • It has Deborah Kerr in it.
    • It has an emotional and sad moment as the heroine is disabled while trying to reunite with her lover...
    • ...But she does still get to reunite with her lover, so it's a happy ending
    • Neither of the leads are pure as the driven, because they are involved with other people when they meet.
    • Chicks dig it.
    • Guys can't stand it.

    Just a thought
    Glorious Technicolor, Breath-Taking CinemaScope and Stereophonic Sound!

  22. #22
    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    The Quintessential Chick Flick: is "Pretty Woman"
    Not after today, when Carrie returns with her Manolos.

    I'm wondering about:

    The Quintessential American Suburb
    The Quintessential Canadian City
    The Quintessential Science Fiction Movie
    The Quintessential American Craft Beer
    The Quintessential Borscht Belt Comedian
    The Quintessential 1970s Sitcom
    The Quintessential 1970s Cop Show

    My nomination for The Quintessential 1980s Song: Opportunities by the Pet Shop Boys. Why?

    * The song's theme: making money. Can't get much more 1980s than that.

    * Classic 1980s electronic synth beat. Unlike other many classic 1980s acts that have a could spill over a bit into the previous or next decade (hair metal bands into the early 1990s, acts like The Cars, Pat Benatar and Blondie performing trademark songs in the late 1970s), the Pet Shop Boys sound is unmistakably mid-1980s; not a day before January 1, 1980 or after December 31, 1989.

    * Pet Shop Boys are the Quintessential 1980s Band: they formed in 1981; peaked in mid-1980s; are still around but pretty much one of those bands where people still think "what ever happened to them?"; they're British; and they're rumored to be gay, but not "too gay" like Boy George or George Michael. The key word is "rumored": think about it, how many musicians from the 1980s have been "rumored" to be gay?

    What it's lacking:

    * Gratuitous upscale saxophone, a staple of so many classic 1980s tunes.

    A slightly off-topic aside: the "Golden Age of Cyburbia" is always believed to be four years ago. In 2008, it was 2004. In 2004, it was 2000, and people were sentimental for the late pre-registration era; Planzilla, Planning Peeves, threads being hijacked and transformed into promotion of "Mondragon communities", and so on. In 2000, well ... nobody seemed sentimental for the more "academic-ish" WWWBoard threads of 1996, with European students discussing the minutiae of Zaha Hadid's early works and whatnot, but a few told me they missed the freedom of being able to post with their real names and email addresses without fearing spam, cyberstalking, and all that.

    Despite the site's recent struggles, I think the golden age is now.

    Okay, back on-topic.
    Last edited by NHPlanner; 30 May 2008 at 12:35 PM. Reason: double reply

  23. #23
    Cyburbian Iron Ring's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Dan View post
    I'm wondering about:

    The Quintessential Canadian City
    I'll Bite.... Winnipeg.
    • It's really, really, really cold
    • It's the home of Neil Young, The Guess Who, and Bachman-Turner Overdrive
    • Can be considered both 'eastern' and 'western' Canada
    • Has both french-speaking and first nations (native indian) populations
    • Founded by fur-trading, canoe travelling 'voyageurs'
    • You've heard of it, but have never been there
    • Their hockey team moved to Phoenix
    • I'm sure it's very clean, but I've never actually been there

  24. #24
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Dan View post
    My nomination for The Quintessential 1980s Song: Opportunities by the Pet Shop Boys.
    A strong contender to be sure, however, my money is going on 'Power of Love' by Huey Lewis & the News. HL&N's career arc pretty closely matches that of the Pet Shop Boys being formed in 1980, and had all of their #1 hits between 1983-1987. Still exist today but squarely in the 'whatever happened to them' status only.

    But why "Power of Love" in particular, you may ask? I mean, the band had other hits that better encapsulated 1980's themes such as 'Hip to be Square' ....The song 'Power of Love' was release precisely mid-decade in 1985, and here's the lynchpin...the song was featured prominently in the movie "Back to the Future" - The Quintessential 1980's film starring the Quintessential Big Screen Yuppie Michael J. Fox!! Huey Lewis that same year also performed on the 80's-iconic 'We Are the World' record.
    Last edited by Maister; 30 May 2008 at 1:00 PM.
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

  25. #25
    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Iron Ring View post
    I'll Bite.... Winnipeg.
    Really? I thought the high crime rate (relative to other Canadian cities) and urban blight (again, relative to other Canadian cities) would rule it out. I would think someplace that is sizable yet unassuming and low-key, kind of like Canada and its good citizens, would head the list. For example: London or Barrie. If some French speakers are a must, maybe Welland,

    Can there be such as thing as a Quintessential Canadian Suburb? Canadian municipalities tend to be so large that a large bulk of urban core municipalities such as Toronto and Calgary were built after World War II. Real suburban municipalities, such as Markham, and Vaughn, are so large they put boomburbs in the US to shame. Mississauga points and laughs at such puny girly-man American suburbs like Aurora, Colorado and Arlington, Texas. Maybe Oakville, Thorold or someplace like that.

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