Published: December 12, 2006

Borat & District

I’ve been a fan of Sasha Baron Cohen’s comedy for a while. It’s just plain funny when someone of a completely different culture tries to become something he’s not. Ali G. is ridiculously hilarious because the character is all London Eastender, but pretends he’s some “West Coast” rapper with a penchant for world events. Borat is a Kazak dropped into Americana chasing the all-American Canadian blonde bomb-shell.

It’s no wonder so many Scots think non-Scots trying to adopt their piping and drumming culture are daft. I mean, the whole piping thing was ethnic music and entrenched in the Scottish culture for hundreds of years when suddenly the rest of the world started becoming, in effect, a hoard of Ali G’s trying their damnedest to fit in.

Borat is looking for the “authentic” American experience, and it’s instant comedy. Aren’t non-Scottish pipe bands competing at the World’s also pining for the authentic Scottish culture experience? No wonder the Scots so often don’t know what to make of all the over-zealous, over-earnest outsiders hilariously determined to fit in to a culture that just is not their own.

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