I spent 24 hours reading VICE to see if I would feel edgy

Inspired by the many “I spent 24 hours doing X” series of articles on VICE, I decided on reading VICE straight for 24 hours just to see what would happen to me. Would I freak out? Would I feel edgy? Would anyone even care?

Here is a needlessly long and ruthlessly trivial hour-by-hour account of what happened in chronological order starting from the first hour and ending at the last, as per regular linear 24 hour timeline practice. As a bit of a wildcard, I’m only playing by three rules: a) I’m not allowed to watch videos unless they are embedded in the article (it would be too easy); b) if I need to go to the toilet I have to continue reading on my phone; c) it can’t be VICE News or Sports. It has to be features, opinion, or the feminist arm they have for some reason, etc.

Hour 1

Teenage Hitmen Describe How They Killed People. Fuck.

When I was 16 I was more worried about being abducted rather than killing people because I still speculated I was boyish and handsome enough for an opportunist predator to want to jump out on me as I walked home at night – sometimes I got scared and ran if I heard a noise. Go to South Africa and those teens actually kill people and stuff, what a little wimp I was by comparison. I’m now in my twenties and I struggle to put socks on some days.

You’d have to do something pretty terrible to me in order to elicit a killing response. I wouldn’t murder you in a gruesome way or anything, I’d probably just drug you up and then put your head face-down in a toilet. After that I’d add more water and pray the U-bend doesn’t work correctly so you’d drown in your own toilet bowl. All your mates would be really sketchy about revealing the details surrounding your death. They wouldn’t want to say that you drowned in your toilet to preserve your honour. Let’s face it, they’d know people would laugh and that they’d probably laugh too and feel bad. Especially if your mate told them on Facebook messenger, they would definitely reply with a LOL and your mate would have to tell them that is the legitimate circumstances of your death and the person would say they were sorry because obviously it sounds like a joke, but then they’d genuinely LOL and probably call someone to tell them and laugh about it.

I read more about South Africa. I’m probs going to avoid going there.

Hour 2

Someone visited Australia’s oldest mosque in an isolated blah, blah, blah. Even if I was Muslim I still wouldn’t care. I mean, mosques are ok-ish, aren’t they? Like all tourist destinations that you can stand and take a picture with, it’s hard to give a shit after five minutes because you’ve seen it. It’s over. Go get a beer. Go smoke a cigarette. Tweet something mean about someone on the internet.

Australia’s oldest brothel or Australia’s oldest eugenics lab would have been a better read but whatever. They have thousands of articles, at least three of them might be about brothels or eugenics.

(EDIT: It turns out they have loads of articles about brothels and eugenics, sadly not together.)

This is starting to feel like a dumb idea. My plan is that I am going to be topical and spend an hour on an area then move on.

Bangkok

Hour 3

I am starting to realise this is actually quite a difficult endeavour. I’ve read books for hours solid but reading VICE for 3 hours is pretty intense. They talk a lot about drugs, London and how good doing drugs in London is.

If you’d never been to London and you only got the lowdown, London 101 from VICE, you’d think it was some super cool place. In real life London is pretty shit. I’ve worked in London for a little bit. During the cute teenage years I was an intern for an MP and I worked in the black building across from the Palace of Westminster (that’s the Houses of Parliament to you guys). This experience taught me that the two things I like most about London are the Evening Standard ‘paper and St Pancras station because I know I’m only 2 hours from my house.

I’ve come to the realisation that I don’t care about London rent prices, although I do understand that some landlords are really taking the piss. But do you know what? Living in London isn’t a fucking right. Move to Sheffield or Manchester – but don’t move to the Northern Quarter because the LAD Bible are based there and they might sue you for calling them wankers.

Hour 4

My fingers kinda hurt from scrolling but, oh fuck: did you know that someone spent 19 hours in a London ASDA?

This is one of the classic example titles I see when people complain about VICE because on the surface it’s sounds so trivial, so stupid and contrived. And I agree: it is trivial, stupid and contrived – but I found it funny. It’s a light-hearted commentary and you know what? I’m going to appreciate Tesco more now. So there.

Also, the girl who wrote it is kind of cute so I followed her on Twitter. I hope she follows me back, maybe I could take her to ASDA and we could swap jokes about the Tom Jones autobiography in the books section, or laugh at refrigerated chicken wings. Maybe later she could show me her George by ASDA unsexy undies with Spongebob Squarepants printed across the crotch and I could unveil my NUTMEG Y-Fronts from Morrisons. Then maybe later we’d shag. A tale of store-crossed lovers. I’d even get Netflix again for twenty minutes if that’s what it would take. Actually I could probably get my mate Jonny to give me his brother’s password so I could use his account.

Hour 5

I’m feeling political: VICE is really into politics, just not right-wing politics so much. Did you know that Jeremy Corbyn is basically Bernie Sanders? Which is kind of the case if you consider that a lot of people think they are a bit too socialist. For that reason I like Bernie Sanders but I don’t like Jeremy Corbyn. I think America could benefit from a bit more socialism, however I think that the UK could do without the unions bullying businesses and undemocratically pushing their agenda through a Labour government under Corbyn.

VICE is a bit too left for my liking. I guess I kind of new this all along but it’s become very obvious after reading their election coverage, general Tory-bashing and incessant worship of Corbyn. I know it’s not cool to like the government, and the Conservatives are stigmatised because of the whole mix-up with the miners strike but, c’mon guys! At least have a pop at Arthur Scargill, the miners strikes were illegally started by him, Thatcher just had the common sense to stand up to him and tell him to get fucked.

Hour 6

I read a few pieces about UKIP. They were kinda funny, but I’m 6 hours in and I’ve lost my sense of humour somewhat. Naturally, everything was anti-UKIP. I quite like UKIP, only because they always make outlandish remarks. For example, their London Mayoral candidate recently said that gay people tend to be more right-wing. His name is Peter Whittle and he is gay, but still, imagine saying that to Owen Jones.

OKAY, NEW TACTIC BECAUSE I’M BORED:

I’ve deviated a bit and I’ve decided I’m allowed to read the comments on the articles they post to facebook. There are so many sarcastic people on the internet and all of them like VICE on Facebook and then moan about it, but strangely never unlike the page. I know this because I routinely see the same names commenting on articles. Some of these comments are quite funny; they basically read the headline then attack the writer without bothering to read the article.

Pro-tip: If you want to get top comment on a VICE article, just comment the word “edgy”.

Bangkok

Hour 7

Why did I choose to do this? It was funny for all about 10 minutes. HAHA, I’m so funny. Look at me, I’m going to take the piss out of VICE by satirising their formulaic 24 hours in X articles. As a concept it’s not even that funny and I probably wouldn’t read this, just like I usually give up about two-thirds into most of their 24 hours articles, but I’m reading them in full for the sake of making the next 17 hours go away.

Next article: Someone spent 24 hours at a florist. Are you fucking serious? If I was misdiagnosed with a terminal illness for 24 hours I would prefer that. Someone legitimately got paid for writing about it. More fool on me though because I have around 17 more hours to go and I won’t see a penny for writing this.

Actually I was a fool to say I would rather be misdiagnosed with a terminal illness, that was just dumb. The florist article was a surprisingly good read. I might make more of an effort to buy flowers in the future.

Hour 8

My morning alarm just went off, I haven’t slept for a while. Dawn has broken. The beautiful skyline of Bangkok greets me.

Ok. I’m taking my first extended break. 30 minutes because I need it. The gentle morning fog which shrouds the city has disappeared and I have a full view of the Bangkok.  My eyes are hurting. I’ve changed my glasses for my other pair which are the same prescription but make my eyes hurt less. In hindsight I should have worn them in the first place.

Article: A woman made yoghurt with her vagina. I felt a bit sick after reading it. Vaginas are pretty unpleasant at the best of times with all the discharge and bleeding and stuff, but yoghurt? Seriously? That’s fucking gross.

Like an idiot I started reading VICE News, forgetting my rule about not reading VICE news. I’m feeling pretty bad for those guys who were arrested for that thing in that country that I don’t live in. It sounds pretty bad, but you know what? I don’t care. I literally read it 10 minutes ago and without going back to check it I couldn’t tell you their names or what country they were arrested in.

Hour 9

I am really glad I took some imodium earlier because I haven’t been to the toilet in about 9 hours. On the subject of toilets, there’s a man who drank camel urine in Yemen I just read about. Apparently that’s a perfectly fine thing to do in Arabia. It reminded me of something my friend Weev once said to me: “I’m not aligned with the Bedouin people.” After reading about all the urine drinking stuff, I can definitely say I am not feeling them 100% either.

I spent 24 hours reading @VICE to see if I would feel edgy Click To Tweet

Hour 10

I asked a friend what I should search for if I wanted to find good articles to read, he said I should search for the word “nigger” just to see what came up. There’s a lot of articles which make use of the word nigger. I haven’t seen the n-word so many times since I watched Django and couldn’t be arsed to turn the subtitles off.

The top result is an article titled: What Am I Saying When I Say ‘Nigger’?

The article doesn’t really have a point. It just seems like he wrote it because he was struggling for ideas and he happens to be black. Obviously, he throws in some stuff about how rappers have appropriated it and it’s all wishy-washy because you know, it’s a word but it’s a racial slur. But, it’s not like you’re invoking the name of the dark lord Voldemort: people have become so desensitized to it. People say nigger I guess; it doesn’t phase me. I wouldn’t say it at the dinner table but then again I don’t generally use racial slurs a whole lot. Maybe that’s because in Britain the racial slur of choice is paki.

My favourite part is where the author makes out he’s conflicted about it, assumes white people really want to say it–really, do they? It’s 2015, I don’t think anyone cares anymore–then admits to saying it constantly. I think it’s a bit cliché and patronising for him to say it’s a word that some white kids wants to join–it’s ALL white kids.

Nigger is complicated. It’s a conversational crutch and a crucible. It’s a cross to bear and a club some white kids wish they could join. I say it constantly, and yet I detest it and what it represents.”

Hour 11

Where do they find these people? Honestly.

20 minutes into VICE Broadly and chill, and I can’t take it. I really don’t understand why VICE has this section. It just doesn’t sound very equal to me. VICE has never particularly struck me as anything but a left-leaning socially liberal publication which posts a quite a few thought-provoking, interesting feminist pieces anyway. Why does it suddenly need a feminist arc? It’s like they’ve made it a section for the sake of it. Gaming, sports, news, feminism, weather.

It’s a movement for encouraging the emancipation of social, political and economic subjugation against women, with full gender equality as the end-game. It seems superfluous as a peripheral entity under the VICE flag, I’m concerned they don’t see the irony as much as everyone else.

One thing I really do wish, though, is that people would stop making things with their vaginas. And I wish people were not subjected to so much abuse online when they say that it’s gross. It is gross. It’s the second time today. I dealt with this shit 3 hours ago. Do whatever you want with your vagina, just appreciate that people shouldn’t be expected not to say it’s gross.

Ok, I really tried with Broadly. I tried a solid hour because I figured 20 minutes was not enough to justify slagging it off. Feminism is a touchy subject, I’m a feminist by virtue of how I believe in equality for everyone (except for murderers, rapists, traffic wardens, that guy who fucked up my order at Dominoes and then was really rude to me about it and expected to me pay full price for a replacement etc.) but this just takes the piss.

Hour 12

Have you ever wanted to know What It’s Really Like Clubbing In A Wheelchair? No, I haven’t. But I kind of know now, or at least I know about one guy who really likes clubbing and is in a wheelchair. I have full use of my legs and arms but clubbing gets on my nerves after a bit anyway so I couldn’t really relate to him.

Plus, if I’m drinking I need to piss a lot so it’d be a nightmare for my mates to have to wheel me to the bathroom every 45 minutes. Plus, I’d have to be disabled. Plus, I’d have to have mates.

I read some more stuff about disabilities. Some people are having a really rough time, and I think more should be done to help them. Personally I’m not going to do anything, but I feel like we should.

Oh yeah, I just want to point out that being fat is not a proper disability. If the caveat to your disability is that if you eat less you are not disabled, I would wager that you aren’t really disabled.

VICE on suicide

Hour 13

VICE posts some really depressing stuff.

Suicide, mental illness and overweight people thinking it’s ok to be fat even though it’s obviously not ok. I don’t have a problem with overweight people, let’s just not pretend it’s healthy.

Sorry, I’m still a bit mardy about fat people pretending to be disabled.

Several people have wrote about what life is like after a failed suicide attempt. I’m not suggesting I know what they felt like in the moments before they tried to swallow too many pills or slash their wrists, but I’m also feeling pretty fed up.

I guess, I just don’t know what I’m doing with my life. I kind of thought I’d have more of a plan by now. You know, something to work towards. Instead I’m sat in an apartment in Bangkok, reading what I assume is over 100 VICE articles so far.

Hour 14

Like an idiot, I just remembered that Noisey is a thing. Noisey is VICE about music. Considering I didn’t stipulate in my rules if I could listen to myself I have decided to fuck off with my gay rules, go full-retard, tell me to get bent and listen to some music. And to really show me I’m listening with big headphones–yeah, fuck me. Apparently, there’s a lot of indie bands kicking around. Also, twatty teenagers in bands who sound a bit too much like Jamie T.

Also, grime.

Basically if you want to write for Noisey you have to pretend to like grime, or actually like grime (but really you’re just pretending). If you don’t like grime you’re wrong and you don’t understand music, or how important grime is. It doesn’t matter if the only grime artist you know is Skepta, because as long as you know all the lyrics to Shutdown you can write for Noisey.

Interestingly enough, if you replace the word shutdown in Shutdown with Noisey, it’s actually a better song, try it: When it’s Noisey, that’s not me and it’s Noisey. Ring ring pussy, it’s Noisey. Fashion week and it’s Noisey.

Brass tacks, reading Noisey makes me feel like Principal Skinner doubting himself: am I out of touch? No, it’s the children who are wrong.

Hour 15

15 fucking hours. I’ve sat down, laid down, stood up, laid back down again and sat on the toilet for a bit. It never ends. I wonder what the monetary worth of the content I have read is. It has to be the in thousands of pounds. You could probably put a nice deposit down on a house somewhere outside of London with all the money.

I would spend it on a cottage somewhere in the Peak District without the internet then subscribe to newspapers and magazines for my literary nourishment, just like old people do.

I have 9 hours to go and I’ve learnt so much already, most of which I probably won’t remember but who cares I’m 15 hours in.

Hour 16

For some reason I didn’t fill this bit in at the time so I don’t actually know what happened here. I think I read some stuff about money and economics? I really don’t know.

Bangkok

Hour 17

I got distracted by a door handle. It wasn’t moving or anything I was just looking at it and imagining what would happen if it did start to move then a SWAT team broke in and arrested me because they mistook me for being a terrorist, or a mega-paedo or something awful. That would suck so bad, no amount of imodium would be able to counteract the pant-shitting that would ensue.

When I was last in Croatia some guys who claimed to be from Europol attempted to arrest my friend, to which he genuinely said that he “won’t be taken alive by faggot Jew-lovers” and kept walking despite their insistence that he was under arrest. I probably would have cried.

Hour 18

Some guy spent 24 hours in a casino in Vegas. I couldn’t do that, I’d be far too drunk. I was in Vegas recently and I was on about calling it a night after 3 hours.

The last time I stayed up for 24 hours was when I accidentally did drugs. I got a bit worried that I would die in my sleep by asphyxiating on my own vomit like a cool rockstar, so I watched pretty much the entirety of The Thick Of It.

I don’t know how I’ve made it this far. My reading pace has really slowed down and my eyes hurt even more. I’ve switched back to my other pair of glasses hoping for some cold-side-of-the-pillow relief, unfortunately the real world isn’t that nice and these glasses hurt my eyes more.

Hour 19

I’m not even sure what is and what isn’t edgy anymore. I’m not a fan of Nazism but I have to admit it seems pretty edgy. Interesting point–why is Nazism still so edgy? I think it’s because it’s so taboo that people get a bit of a thrill about reading about it, just like those murder porn documentaries. I think we all love a villain and apart from that guy who killed Cecil the Lion you don’t get bigger villains than Hitler. He was a proper villain.

Hour 20

I feel like I’m on drugs and I’m worried that I might secretly be racist. Not properly racist but my views on immigration have certainly taken a turn in the last 20 or so hours. Perhaps we need to look at immigration on a global scale. If not, I hope we can all get along pretty well. So long as nobody is going to force me to stop eating red meat and Jeremy Corbyn isn’t Prime Minister then I’m okay I guess.

Drop

Hour 21

Is VICE even real? I’m looking at it but I’m not really retaining anything anymore. I read something about cats.

Hour 22

Ok, I’ve changed my mind. I don’t want to do this anymore, but I do want to get to the 24 hour mark because I’m so heavily invested in this.

Hour 23

Like a daft bastard, I fell asleep somewhere before this so I didn’t technically make it to 24 hours but realistically you probably didn’t read down this far so it’s ok.