It’s fun to play with these ideas, but in the grand sense, the detectives are wasting their time. For all their obsessiveness, it’s somehow lost on them that the last shot of a character surnamed Dante shows him in the limbo of a coma, that Paulie Walnuts explains the difference between hell and the afterlife’s waystation to a hospitalized Christopher Moltisanti, and that Tony spends a healthy portion of the series caught in a dreamworld between life and death. (The Sopranos Family Cookbook even includes a recipe for Uova in Purgatorio—“eggs in purgatory.”) Not the subtlest motif, yet we continue to overlook it.
I met a Miles today. Finally, an answer to “Who’s Miles?” The woes of pun tattoos. (at Tumblr HQ)
Tried to point to myself like “THIS GUY,” but no, just a botched thumbs-up.
The Field Mice /// “That’s All This Is”
First of all, yes.
A new study suggests that highlighting racism in the criminal justice system is not the answer, and in fact pushes white voters in the opposite direction. Even when whites believe the current laws are too harsh, they’re less likely to support changing the law if they’re reminded that the current prison population is disproportionately black.
I’ll admit to being taken in by the bitter surrealism of novels like Choke, Lullaby, and Survivor in high school. But Diary felt off to me, and by the time I picked up Haunted during a college semester abroad, I knew Palahniuk and I had forever parted ways. The thrilling riffs had been subsumed by terse repetition, the transgressive insights by gross-out schlock. This isn’t to suggest Palahniuk’s talents had faded, just that literature needs to hit you at the right time and place to succeed, and this particular window had closed. For many readers, it never will.
This was evident in the admiring queries Palahniuk received during his promotional stint: “You’re the reason i read books now,” gushed one fan, while others thanked him profusely for fiction that had greatly bettered or even saved their lives. That he’s become an icon for those who feel squelched by society and pushed to their spiritual limit—also a suitable description of his protagonists—means his moments of generosity and wisdom are that much more valuable. When asked to recommend books by his peers, he named an admired trio of female writers.
But the Palahniuk fandom’s tendency to hang on his every utterance, and their noted inability to parse his outlandish stories as satire, make it twice as annoying when he’s wishy-washy about Fight Club’s tricky gloss on gender and gospel status in the men’s rights community or generalizes about the state of publishing as it relates to masculinity. As one Tumblr blogger lamented, it’s easy to laugh at his “oppressed white male” schtick, but “so many angry young men actually listen to him and feel validated in their anger by his bullshit. It just makes me feel sad and afraid.”
I’m not about to ask my doctor if Cialis is right for me—the problem, I know, is purely psychosomatic. It requires a subtler touch. Maybe something herbal. Maybe a specially blended virility tea. From the Internet.
Sadly, I am the person who wrote this.
And the light. The light in the room is fantastic. Vermeer, all business, hands on his hips, directing the sun. Of course, there’s the berber rug. Not a Paul-Bowles-got-wasted-on-this-rug-berber, but creamy, white wool, Yaletown berber.
Nina, sitting cross-legged on her basement suite’s futon couch, fennel tea cooling beside her on the upturned milk crate draped with a beach towel, really does want to hate them. She has already started that ascent to the dizzying heights a decent bout of righteous anger can transport her to—that place where the air thins, the blood grows hypoxic, and you can muse on your own demise in an oddly detached manner—but the fine print gets in the way. Dramatization, it reads in tiny type at the bottom of the magazine ad. The clients’ names and story are fictitious and intended to be an illustration of services available through Merrill Lynch. Investment results may vary.
Still, there’s that light and the unnerving placement of naïf objets d’art. And Patricia, coiled to spring even in repose. It’s as if Jeff Wall has done an ad for Merrill Lynch. The People You Will Never Be So Kill Yourself Now (cibachrome, 2006).
Zsuzsi Gartner, “Investment Results May Vary”
"I’ve got a membership—Klee is the last name. K-L-E-E. Miles."
"Oh! You’re—I read Ivyland. I liked it!”
"Oh, thank you!"
"If you have a minute, would you mind signing the copies we have upstairs?"
"Uh, I already did."