Posts Tagged ‘literature’

There Goes My Literary Hipster Street Cred

January 26, 2011

It’s been entirely too long since anything new popped up here. Deciding to remedy that situation this morning, but not wanting to attempt any actual work involved in creating a real blog post, I began running old entries through the I Write Like web site, which purports to analyze writing samples and match their word content and style to those of well-known (a.k.a., real) writers, to see what would appear.

The site claims the overwhelming majority of posts I’ve run through it match David Foster Wallace most closely, with a couple of stray entries each mirroring Chuck Palahniuk and Cory Doctorow.

The kicker is that while I’ve heard of all of these guys, I’ve never actually read any of their books. Hell, I’ve never even watched the movie version of Fight Club, despite my wife’s continual attempts through the years to make me see it.

There goes my literary hipster street cred. Maybe my status as some literatus with a B.A. in English is tracing thin ice these days, too.

The problem is that while I read a lot, most of what I read for fun is stuff that’s old enough to easily fall into the realm of public domain. Maybe I should start catching up with the twentieth century now that it’s over.

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Random Thought of the Day

November 18, 2009

I shudder to think about what Marcel Proust might have done if he’d had access to a camera phone that shoots HD video and unlimited hard drive space.

Ineluctable Modality of the Visible

June 16, 2009

Eat with relish the inner organs of beasts and fowls in celebration of this fine day, and spend tonight hanging around some insufferably pretentious kid!

The heading on my old Myspace page (which I’m not sure if I even have any more, since I haven’t checked it in about half a year) says (or said): “All wind and piss like a tanyard cat.” I got that by opening a copy of Ulysses sight unseen to a random page and jamming my finger down upon it. That was the sentence my finger pointed to. It seemed like an appropriate enough statement to sum up anything I would put on the Internet.

If you ever wondered what the original Bloomsday would have been like had it taken place 105 years later, here it is.

. . . yes I said yes I will Yes.

Excerpts From The Blog Of Robinson Crusoe

July 26, 2008

Archaeologists have recently uncovered a heretofore undiscovered blog of the “life and strange surprising adventures” of one “Robinson Crusoe of York, Mariner.” The blog was found buried beneath a rubbish pile in the Internet consisting of Pets.com, OS/2, CDNow, WordPerfect for Macintosh, and several billion free hours of America Online. Here are several excerpts from that historically important blog:

Day 36: Why am I getting a WiFi signal on this island?

Day 642: It turns out the mysterious WiFi signal and electrical wiring comes from the cannibals who occasionally visit here to barbecue prisoners and look up porn on the Internet. I’ve adopted an escaped prisoner who tells me his lifelong ambition is to open up a chain of tacky restaurants featuring unremarkably pedestrian cuisine. I have the inexplicable urge to name him Friday.

Day 1574: Some guy with a funny accent calling himself J.M. Coetzee showed up yesterday. He keeps following Friday and me around and saying that he’s taking notes for a post-modern deconstruction of my life story, whatever the heck that’s supposed to mean. I should see if he’s brought some beer with him.

The Return of Ask Mr. Know-It-All

February 22, 2008

Every day, people in search of knowledge turn to that 21st century oracle, the search engine, to point them toward answers. Once again, search engines have been pointing those poor, poor souls here in response. To guide them in their quest for learning, I have again called upon the intrepid Mr. Know-It-All to provide the wisdom they seek. Kids, feel free to plagiarize anything and everything he says for use in your reports for school. I guarantee you will get an “A” as a result.

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Question One: “What is the correct way to address a letter to a member of congress?”

Mr. Know-It-All: The answer depends upon to whom you are addressing the letter in question. If you are writing to a member of the House of Representatives, it is best to use the greeting, “Dear Representative too unpopular to get elected to the more prestigious Senate (The only people who like me enough to vote for me are entirely localized in this puny little district. WAAAAAH!).”

If you are addressing a member of the Senate, however, keep in mind that Senators like to use lots of words, to the point that it completely muddles whatever thought it is they are trying to express. As a result, it is best to approach them using their own language. For example, “Dear Most August Personage and Occupant of the Exalted Seat, Covered in Plush Velure of the Deepest Pale Crimson over Solid Hardwood, Numbered 32A in the Senatorial Chamber of the Capitol of the United States of America, Just Down the Street from that Spot on The Mall Where All the Aides Like to Play Ultimate Frisbee on Saturday Whilst Eating Burritos from that Street Vendor Named Joey Who Reposes Each Night in His Home Someplace Outside Bethesda, Where He Curses at the Television Set While Watching the Washington Nationals, Formerly Known as the Montreal Expos, Lose Yet Another Game of Base-Ball, a Sport that Evolved from an Old New England Pastime Known as ‘Rounders’ or ‘Town Ball.'”

Of course, by the time you’ve written this greeting, you will have probably forgotten what it was you were going to say to your Senator other than asking him or her what the hell a group of Expos is supposed to look like. Just go ahead and ask your Senator that.

Question Two: “Who is the author who wrote life is a tale told by an idiot?”

Mr. Know-It-All: Dave Magadan. See question three for more details.

Question Three: “What has Dave Magadan done?”

Mr. Know-It-All: Dave Magadan is the great Renaissance man who first rose to fame for successfully defending Rome, Georgia at the Battle of Waterloo from Hannibal’s invading Assyrian army that crossed the Catskills with such noted lieutenants as Face, Achilles, Murdock, Hector and B.A. in 1872. Magadan is much admired around the world for his role in that battle, and as a result a statue of him stands in London’s Syntagma Square, inscribed with his motto, “Don’t Give Up The Ship.” After his military career, he turned to literary pursuits and wrote the English language’s two greatest masterworks, Who Moved My Cheese? and the Bhagavad Gita.


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