Blog/2014

Posts I will apparently not write this year

> A post considering the influence of A.A. Milne and Dr. Seuss. Conclusion: Seuss spawned thousands of awful imitators (and, on re-consideration, most of Seuss is strained and banal). Milne is in some ways the grandfather of post-postmodern American literature, starting with McSweeney’s and including David Foster Wallace and George Saunders.    > A post […]

Best tattoo that is not on my body

On the forearm of a cashier at the Co-op: The vegan symbol crossed with the anarchy symbol, beneath which is the legend: “no milk no masters.”  (For the record: I have no tattoos.) (But “no milk no masters” is just about poetry.)    

Too many reasons to link to this

Please go here, because I can’t write separate blog posts for every smart thing in the interview or every great clip from the documentary. I was glancingly aware of Pulp when I was younger (they were not-Blur); now, later in life, it turns out that Jarvis Cocker is a freaking oracle, not to mention a […]

Bury Me At Makeout Creek

I wish, I wish, I wish I had been smart enough to write that line. It comes from the Simpsons; it was recently appropriated by an indie band, which is how I discovered it. And now it will be in my head for the rest of my life.

News from the gloriously not-young

From a recent Talk of the Town piece about Wayne Thiebaud, a painter in his 90s who throughout his long career has taken as his primary subject matter the simple, the eternal dessert: pie. He recalls the advice given to him by his mentors (de Kooning, Kline, etc.): “If you’re going to paint, you’d better […]

My favorite music writing of the decade

is this letter from Godspeed You! Black Emperor in response to winning a Polaris Music Award. I think it’s brilliant: angry, sweet, sincere, sloppily poetic, political in a particularly self-aware, two-hearted, 21st-century way. I don’t know why I took so long to post it. I would post it every day, really–or I’d like to remember […]

How to co-opt an artist, part II

Oh, and then Mary, in her role as smart observer of contemporary culture, said this about the Vans series, which is called “Living Off the Wall”: “Apparently only happy go-lucky people with a large peppering of ‘like’ in their vocabulary and no major activist or social agendas (aside from promoting the right to tattoo in […]

How to co-opt an artist

The other day Joe shared this series of films produced by Vans. I made some small noise about my discomfort with corporations co-opting artists. Tom, in his role as provocateur, asked: Isn’t this the same thing as us making a film about, say, a student majoring in the arts at Wellesley? In my role as […]

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