Saturday, July 19, 2008

Still a good saturday

This man...this man is my hero.

A good saturday

I am lounging around in my bathrobe, eating cold pizza, and watching Kristen Schaal's bit on cougars from the Daily Show being an angry erotic sheep in the woods* I am pretty content.

*I felt like I still owed a video, since the daily show on didn't work.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Sunday, July 6, 2008

True story. Really.

me: I had a dream about neil gaiman the other night
kitty: yeah?
me: he and my theis advisor were running an "america's next top model-cum-bootcamp" for science fiction writers
me: the final challenge was writing a short story about a domestic cow and a buffalo on glass with wax pencils, under a time limit
Kitty: dang
me: yeah
me: it was bizarre
me: then I got up and dealt with a gas leak at church
me: I came out to tell the service assistant that everything was ok, we just needed to not make any sparks, and she was shaking out a match.

You asked me why historians look down on cultural studies folk

Here's why. I cannot think of enough bad things to say about this motherfucker. He's got that brilliant self-righteousness only found among dedicated potheads - the kind who are truly, blazingly (hah, sorry) committed to the belief that marijuana is a gift from some god - and those in poorly-defined, utterly amorphous areas of study with no real methodology. He's also got that goddamn cultural studies mindset where everything they do is plated with the finest gold, and real world concerns and pursuits are beneath them. Vide:
A lot has been written over the past decade about the corporatization of the university and the subordination of a liberal education to business efficiency. The drug usage of scholars in the humanities may be an indication of that shift. I fear that we'll have finally, irrevocably, lost the culture wars when the humanists are doing the same drugs as the M.B.A. students.
Oh, gods above forbid that humanities people do the same drugs as the M.B.A. students! Oh, man, we have to keep our culture pure, and not party or enjoy ourselves in the same way, for verily, that leads to soulless corporatization! The personal is political, man. That's why my drug use is ok, because I support NORML.

What a fucking shower, to use a fun little anglicism. This concludes my substantive remarks on his article.

I'd like to take a second here to point out that this douchebag's pseudonym is "Thomas Quincey." Thomas de Quincey was, of course, the author of that great 19th century version of Go Ask Alice - Confessions of an English Opium Eater. The pseudonym seems a bit hard to take; after all, Mr. Quincey (the pseudonymous, 21ist-century version) seems aghast at the use of hard drugs in academia, and not at all struggling with his own favored chemical. Perhaps something more appropriate would have been a pseudonym that spelled out "THC," rather than trying to cloak himself in history.

This all just confirms my prejudices about cultural studies people. They're faintly silly. They're like Burrough's description of "tea-heads"- "naturally silly."

  • The tl:dr from all of this - smoke all the damn pot you want - please, feel free - but for the love of god, don't become a cultural studies person.
(Via New Kid on the Hallway, which came to me via Notorious PhD)

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Found it!

I have spent weeks looking for this guy! Very weird, and very cool.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

A-hem. A "suggestion" or two.

I have already explained the rule for using them term "thought police."* I would like to expand on this.

"Suggestion" #1: Stop quoting Voltaire. You can read an appreciate him, and really you have to to appreciate the Enlightenment, but please, please, stop quoting him. Especially on the internet, or in opinion columns. "Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities" has not be original since the 18th century. I am looking with special irritation at internet atheist sites. There are so many other ways of saying what that quote says. As George Orwell once said, "Never use a metaphor, simile or other figure of speech which you are used to seeing in print." Which, rather conveniently (not to say glibly), brings me to my second point.

"Suggestion" #2: Read and appreciate Orwell, enjoy him as one of the masters of English prose style of the past few hundred years, but for gods' sake, stop using him out of context. Not everything is an Orwellian nightmare, and there's enough out there that is truly Orwellian to flex those quoting muscles. The recent boingboing kerfluffle is an example of poor use of Orwellian language. What the BB editors did was basically within their rights, and while I'd like to know why it happened, it's not going to change. I also think they could have handled it better. It was not a Room 101 situation, Violet Blue has not been disappeared from the internets, and I have - what with my naturally sunny nature and all - a hunch that the BB team will learn from this. And I'd hope that other internet voices learn to stop cheapening Orwell and start rereading him.

*If you are not referring to a life or death situation, its use makes you a jerk.