“A more thorough investigation in the archives of the local Grange Library would reveal Sir Edmund Flecker Glenard as a successful colonial who had made a pretty sum in Jamaica, farming tobacco, or rather overseeing great tracts of land where tobacco was being farmed. At the end of twenty years of this, having acquired far more money than was necessary, Sir Edmund sat back in his impressive leather armchair and asked himself if there was not something he could do. Something to send him into his dotage cushioned by a feeling of goodwill and worthiness. Something for the people. The ones he could see from his window. Out there in the field.”—White Teeth by Zadie Smith (via novazembla)
During the Los Angeles Police Department’s forcible removal of the Occupy LA protest last night, they chose 12 reporters and photographers to represent the media as a whole. This is called a “media pool”…
…The LAPD deployed this old-school method in a decidedly 20th-century way. First, they didn’t select a single web-based publication or alternative news outlet. Instead they allowed the Los Angeles Daily News, Los Angeles Times, Reuters, AP, the big four television outlets, and a two radio reporters. Anybody not in that group — which would include reporters for every website not affiliated with a newspaper in Los Angeles, not to mention all citizens performing acts of journalism — were told that they would be arrested if they came too close to the eviction area…
…City police departments share a lot of information and if the LAPD’s strategy is seen as successful, expect it will be deployed again in other cities. More broadly, it seems plausible that government agencies will continue to buddy up to traditional media members, offering them exclusive access in exchange for agreeing to the exclusion of citizen journalists from important events.
Anachronistic techniques to curb the power of social media.
Why did I write it down? In order to remember, of course, but exactly what was it I wanted to remember? How much of it actually happened? Did any of it? Why do I keep a notebook at all? It is easy to deceive oneself on all those scores.
Police said Mr Cole, who was wearing a bow tie and rather too much tweed for his age, would not reveal his country of origin. “Countries do not exist where I am from. The discovery of the Higgs boson led to limitless power, the elimination of poverty and Kit-Kats for everyone. It is a communist chocolate hellhole and I’m here to stop it ever happening.”
When I left academia in 2008 to try to be a full-time writer, the last thing I was looking forward to was the commercial side of my new profession. Like every good leftist and many an academic, I looked on the market as evil, a place that would debase your values and suck out your soul if you gave it half a chance. But here’s what I’ve discovered in the last few years: I kind of like it a little.
William Deresiewicz publishes a weekly blog with us called All Points.
"I’ve been trying to imagine Norman Rockwell trying to paint the modern American family gathered around the Thanksgiving dinner table. For four decades Rockwell was the custodian of our domestic mythology, mainly with his covers for TheSaturday Evening Post, which fixed in our collective memory the sacramental moments of small-town life—Bobby’s first haircut, Barb’s first prom—and its supporting cast of butchers, bakers, teachers, preachers, judges, cops, and other kindly bulwarks of stability…”
Lunching on Olympus by Steven L. Isenberg My meals with W. H. Auden, E. M. Forster, Philip Larkin, and William Empson. (This one has three pages of secret bonus material not normally available to the public, to access it just add 2, 3, and 4 to the URL).
Getting past this thickly accented gatekeeper to a respectable grade in Chemistry 101 or Art History 312 is a collegiate rite of passage, much like purchasing twin XL sheets or deducing that the color you know as blue might actually be the same color your roommate calls green…
Jessica Love publishes a weekly blog with us called Psycho Babble.
“The lamp said,
Here is the number on the door.
You have the key,
The little lamp spreads a ring on the stair,
The bed is open; the tooth-brush hangs on the wall,
Put your shoes at the door, sleep, prepare for life.””—
Medicare, Social Security, retirement, Alzheimer’s, snowbird economies, the population boom, the golfing boom, the cosmetic-surgery boom, the nostalgia boom, the recreational-vehicle boom, Viagra - increasing longevity is entangled in every one.
“But of course,” Susan Sontag says somewhere, “New York is not America.” But of course: the notion is a commonplace, not least among the liberal classes. People like me, in other words, and probably people like you. And we all know what the formula means: that the values and sensibilities that New York epitomizes—cosmopolitan, freethinking, cultured—are somehow not America, either. That we, thank God, are not America, are not Americans. That New York is, that we are, halfway towards what more enlightened Americans have always longed to be (though we are more apt to intend the idea now in political than in cultural terms): European…
William Deresiewicz publishes a weekly column with us called All Points.
“One of the mixed blessings of being twenty and twenty one and even twenty three is the conviction that nothing like this, all evidence to the contrary notwithstanding, has ever happened to anyone before.”—Joan Didion, Goodbye To All That, 1968. (via xelvinn) [interview here] (via nprfreshair)
A burial site discovered in Mallaha, the upper Jordan Valley of Israel, contains the 12,000-year-old bones of an elderly human. The skeleton’s left hand embraces, with unmistakable affection, the bones of a puppy.
“[Readers] must be given room to play their role in the act of writing—to discover for themselves what’s surprising or predictable or understandable or ironic. They don’t want that pleasure usurped.”—William Zinsser