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« Herbert Muschamp is Real Gone | Main | Guest Posting from Planet Friedrich »

June 25, 2004


Dear Vanessa --

* Alice Bachini blogs again! Only now she's deploying her unique combo of style, voice, merriment, and incisiveness from Texas, here.

* Yahmdallah has some suggestions for summer viewing, here.

* The invaluable Independent Institute takes a look here at Bush-era budget figures and delivers the bad news: since 9/11, federal spending has been increasing at a faster rate than at any time in the last 30 years.

* Finally proven once and for all: being male is bad for your health. Details here. Plus, quel surprise, men are less sensitive to physical pain than women are, here.

* Dutton on Rosen on Modernism, here. Sample quote:

The problem for modernism is that with atonality it reached a point where intelligibility, and therefore pleasure, was stretched beyond the breaking point. The aesthetic effect of music depends in most instances on its ability to incite predictions and then foil them: think of the dramatic modulations of Beethoven, or the sudden, unexpected shifts into major keys in Schubert. Completely unpredictable music can no longer surprise its listeners: if just anything can be expected, nothing can enter experience as unexpected.

And ain't that the truth. I notice that ALD (here) has linked to a Nature piece here about atonality.

* If "secularism" is held to with fanatical zeal, does it become its own kind of religion? Here.

* Terry Teachout looks at the NYTimes' two, wildly-different reviews of Bill Clinton's memoir -- Michiko's pan and Larry's praise -- and makes a lot of sensible and worldly observations about how the book-reviewing trade works, here.

* Have you explored the blog Gene Expression, here? Dicey but fascinating topics we'll all be hearing more about, brainily handled. Now's a good time to check them out: Razib, Godless and the crew are on an especially-energetic roll.

* I got a chance to hang with Steve Sailer for an evening and had a great time. He's the bighearted, calm, and supersmart person his journalism and blogging suggests that he is. I don't follow sports, but I learned a lot anyway from Steve's recent column about the Larry Bird brouhaha, here. (I was about to type "the Larry Bird flap," but for some reason that didn't seem like a good idea.)

* A much-buzzed-about current art show can be read about here. It's by the artist Andrea Fraser, and it consists of a videotape of Fraser having sex with an art collector. That's the artwork. As one critic wrote, "It's about Hobbesian notions of the social contract, the art of the deal, and of course, 20 grand, which is what Fraser got paid."

* I notice that this place here seems to be selling yoga pants and shorts that some male visitors might find acceptable: stretchy enough to suit a yoga class, but long and baggy enough to suit a square straight guy too. Yuppie prices, though.



posted by Michael at June 25, 2004


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