A McMansion and a Megamansion have a spirited debate

Listen as a 9,000 square foot McMansion and a 30,000 Megamansion debate their respective virtues. Who should really be called ostentatious? At least they can agree on their dislike for a nearby apartment building.

This is a funny series: you can also find a conversation between two trash-talking classic pieces of furniture, an argument between a blender and espresso machine, and two NYC bikes duke it out. Here is more about the short series:

Comedy writer Tom Saunders (Arrested Development, The Larry Sanders Show, Just Shoot Me), on the other hand, has long fantasized that the stuff around us actually talks, and he has created a series for DnA that proves it.

In Everything Talks, buildings and objects (often brand-name designer products) bicker over who’s best. They puff out their chests, brag and trash talk, trying to best their rival. The segment spotlights the thrill of rivalry and in doing so has fun with the status we humans attach to our objects.

Here is how Tom describes Everything Talks: “The idea that we could hear an actual conversation between, for example, a Vitamix blender and a Rancho Silvia espresso maker was science fiction only a few years ago. At last, a new computer app (connected to an ultra sensitive listening device) is able to translate, amplify and record otherwise inaudible discussions between inanimate objects without them knowing we are listening in!

Throw in some of the magic from The Twilight Zone and these braggart status could soon be taking over the world…

One part of this that is funny is that while humans use consumer goods as status symbols and measure themselves against others with these objects, they don’t always do this directly. This can be done through intermediaries or in one’s own head for a long time while trying to not let others know this is happening. This reminds me of the findings of the ethnography The Moral Order of a Suburb where a sociologist finds that suburbanites tend to get along by avoiding direct confrontation. In debates over McMansions, this might take the form of going to local government and objecting or writing a letter to the editor (though I’m sure there are occasionally face-to-face arguments about McMansions).


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