Bash Compactor: What A Tangled Web

Written by Jamie Peck on . Posted in Bash Compactor, Posts.

What if you could re-live your high
school experience with all the wisdom, style and orthodontic perfection
of adulthood? New York’s numerous electronically aided narcissists
sought to answer this question once and for all at the Webutante Ball
this past Tuesday.

Upon entering Chelsea mega-club Marquee, I
encountered a multitude of geeks in frilly formalwear dancing awkwardly
to Lady Gaga. Snatches of overheard conversation included the
phrases “super successful blog-to-book deal,” “my phone’s in airplane
mode” and some vaguely bitchy things about other nerds. Almost everyone
pulled out his or her cell phone at some point to document the event,
creating the vertiginous sensation of partying in Foucault’s panopticon.
Or, as one blogger put it while lingering on the perimeter taking notes
on his iPhone and looking miserable, “It’s like watching the Internet
get a colonoscopy.”

The party’s more recognizable faces could be
found largely on the club’s upper level, where folks like Nick
and the College Humor crew hobnobbed with giggling webutantes
and friendly press folk in a not un-autoerotic fashion. “I can’t think
of anything I do all year that causes more self-loathing,” web
personality Rex Sorgatz sighed. Then why go? “Because everyone is

One of the night’s more telling moments came when they
announced the king and queen of the ball, Conan O’Brien and Betty
Being actual celebrities, they weren’t able to attend, so
the photo op went to Arthur Kade, whose online performance art
presents a parodic critique of misogyny so sophisticated most people
don’t get it, and Kari Ferrell (a.k.a. the Hipster Grifter), who
once stole a bunch of money from some people. Kate pulled out a camera
and took a few MySpace-angled shots as she mimed fellatio on him.
“Arthur Kade said he wanted to fist me, so that was pretty special,”
Ferrell said later. “He’s known for being a dick. He deserves to be
grifted.” What was she up to? “Filming a pilot for a TV show and
freelance writing. All legal activities.” The therapy, she assured me,
was working. “I’m getting married next year,” she added, flashing a
photo of a handsome bearded fellow. “I’m trying to get Gawker to pay for