Hope everyone had a great 4th of July. And for all the Canadians, hope you had a great Canada Day. There's a Kate Beaton comic for you as well. I spent America's birthday on my couch sick with food poisoning, watching 1776 on TV. Seeing Mr. Feeny run about in tights and sing of American independence is jarring but enjoyable. I also started David McCullough's bestselling biography of John Adams. But now may not be the best time to start a 750 page biography of a colonial icon. Although it's really absorbing so far.
Here are some internet quotes for all you independent people out there.
Minimalism as a productive style can be very affective, alarming and satisfying, but I don’t think there ever was a pure strain of it. For a time, it was just a kettle into which many a strange fish were flung. Now with America’s miniaturization if not irrelevance in the world, it might return to the short story in grim and freshened renewal. Certainly the days of the giddy blowhard are over. I hope.
Joy Williams, Link
Maybe life is one giant disorganized flash mob, a cute point that is still being made. A 6.77 billion people fucked up flash mob without a clear recipient. Some people go to the movies, some girls go to Japan, some OD on heroin, some steal their mom’s BMW, and some guys walk to Walgreen’s for shampoo (I had hair then) at 7:42 pm on a Friday night, the night this apparently really good movie was opening, and decide to walk 3 miles to the Boardwalk, somewhat masochistically in flip flops, entering the ocean, until the coldness bites his shins, and he hears the effortless grasp of waves recoiling back into the ocean, the hiss of its waters seeping into the sand, and the chalky cosmic zit of the moon saying I have let you see this. I think I kept going back because I needed an edge of this world. Night will make the water black, cola. There’s no point in truth because we are only eyes.
Jimmy Chen, Link
wish i had a crowd of spectators like that bro on Man vs Food in here with me rooting while i refresh Facebook and lay on the floor
Every time I get on Facebook.
Status Update: I may not be living The American Dream like you, but I do have a degree from a private liberal arts university, and that is where I learned that while the possibilities granted by freedom may not always lead to a Successful Life, they do often result in a satisfying sense of superiority. Unlike nearly everyone I graduated high school with, I remain unencumbered by children, a spouse, or the e-moans of e-animal-husbandry on Farmville. Therefore, feelings of superiority arise from knowledge of the following freedoms: I am not forced to explain to anyone why looking at politician/ celebrity dick pics online is not the same as cheating; I can travel to developing countries plagued with women’s rights/ human trafficking problems without worrying that my inevitable kidnapping will devastate anyone and/ or become the basis for a sappy Lifetime movie; etc.
CJ Hallman, Link
On writing with internet access:
that kind of feed of the surrounding world can be rejuvenating, even while it eats your time. I don’t know, I like to have the onslaught of things coming at my head, and then write in streams of focus and click back out, have somewhere to go and not slog through writing endlessly. It’s like a perpetual reset button, though it can get the better of you if you let it, I imagine. If I didn’t have that set up at this point, like I was writing in a log cabin, I would feel claustrophobic and antsy and weird, whereas the internet lets me feel like I’m in a much bigger room, even if the room is idiotic.
Blake Butler, Link
like my best friend geoff, we see each other mayyyyyyybe once a month despite living close, usually less, but we’ve had this intense email chain going since 2002, have probably exchanged about 1000+ printed pages a year, and that’s a really satisfying interaction for me because those conversations have zero filler. but again, the fact that i have a mostly email relationship with my nearest and dearest friend probably says something about how much i’m failing at being a socially integrated person.
Andrea Seigel, Link
My mom has a Buddhist shrine-type thing to which she prays whenever she wants something bad, a new love for me, an old heart for my dad, or just that new Burberry spring coat. I tell her that Buddhism is essentially self-death, but so masochistic you can’t even kill yourself. Of course, I don’t say it in those words. “Ma, it’s about letting go, not holding on,” I say, with condescending italics. She looks at me calmly and lovingly as her child, the invoice of a liberal education branded on my forehead. We don’t understand each other, which is where food comes in. “Let’s go call Junior” (Carl’s Jr. in my mom talk), she says, a sad hunger in her eyes. We make the five minute drive through suburban streets named after states, a microcosm of America in more than one way. She struggles through the intercom, eagerly leaning out the window with a Chinese accent. I see her long lamented muffin-tops around her waist, the near-perfect blue sky of what should be happy, and want to cry. Death is not the and, I say, &. &. Who knew the ampersand could promise so much. On the drive home, me holding the warm bag of Carl’s son, she reaches in for a french fry or two, fingers finding fingers.
Jimmy Chen, Link