Ten Things, 42-2021

art by Jason Rainville

Here are ten things.

  1. Like most of the internet, I've been transfixed by the ongoing “Bad Art Friend” saga. Two new wrinkles: a list of corrections Dawn Dorland sent to Gawker regarding their blog posts on this whole kerfuffle and a New Yorker review of the Sonya Larson short story at the heart of the matter.
  2. Even though I consistently go 1-2 and get my ass stomped, Jank City, my Magic playgroup's flagship draft event, is always a blast when it happens. My pal Neil won the day with a dudes-heavy Gruul deck powered by the Mythic Conspiracy card Hymn of the Wilds. We have now banned this card from future play.
  3. I'm always tickled by the stuff Wikipedia Haiku pulls out. A sample:
    It was said the lights
    were clearer on the eve of
    a lunar New Year
  4. What horror movie character are you? My answer: “the guy who gets fucked up by an animal-shaped demon because he wanted to pet it”
  5. Speaking of horror, I watched Gremlins 2: The New Batch for the first time as part of my ongoing spooky season viewing project, and as it turns out, it's a masterpiece. For one brief shining moment, Joe Dante was the American Jacques Tati.
  6. Further viewing: I also watched Alien 3 and thought it was... fine. Admirably downbeat and textured in the way those early Fincher movies are, and not a whole lot else for me to hang my hat on. I talked to my friend Isabelle about it (she's a massive Alien 3 booster), and it was kind of an insight into disagreements about art. Often, it's not so much about misreading or not getting it or whatever, it's differing aesthetic reactions to something both people correctly identified.
  7. Whoever designed the packaging for the Criterion edition of The Celebration deserves a promotion and a raise.
  8. The new black midi record Cavalcade fucking whips ass. Plays like every version of King Crimson at once.
  9. The newest episode of Shutdown Fullcast is a doozy: “What's the dumbest fight you've ever witnessed?”
  10. I'm going to take a page from Laura Olin's playbook and end with a poem I stumbled onto.
    Now we gather worshipful.
    The gears in his legs shine down.
    He lifts his head.
    Here he comes!
    We’re erecting a maypole with green ribbons.
    His legs are four probes.
    And his back is a ship and his eyes are holes in the curtain.
    We’re eating cookies in the shape of him.
    The icing is gold and silver.
    He’s’ shedding gears, here he comes tripping!
    He is casting off the elastic bindings.
    Now we’re hanging giant flags.
    The wind-up key sticks in his side like a blade.
    The wind rocks him on his wheels.
    Here he comes, crawling!
    The bright obvious shines in his body.
    Here comes the electric, the burning mystery!
    —Sarah Manguso, “The Deer Comes Down the Mountain”

#lists #tenthings