1 December 2001
[king] The Fall of a Pop Impresario [Part 1 | Part 2] … Jon Ronson takes a break from the secret rulers of the world and spends a while with Jonathan King. ‘In mid-October 2001, I have coffee with Jonathan King’s brother, Andy. He’s just visited Jonathan in Belmarsh for the first time. “How is Jonathan doing?” I ask. “Great,” says Andy. “He seems really cheerful. Talking 10 to a dozen.” “Really?” I ask. “He’s wearing pink pyjamas as a silent protest,” Andy tells me. “He says it’s aesthetically reminiscent of the way gays were treated under the Nazis.”‘
[film] This is so me… [via Meg]

Christopher Lee -- a modern master of horror!

If I was a James Bond villain, I would be Francisco Scaramanga.

I enjoy good food, monopolising the world’s energy supplies, and sex before assassinating people.

I am played by Christopher Lee in The Man with the Golden Gun.

Who would you be? James Bond Villain Personality Test

2 December 2001
[evil] Honestly, you haven’t Changed a Bit … an Observer Journalist meets her first love and profiles Friends Reunited‘…others take a darker view [of Friends Reunited]. ‘The majority of people leave school feeling like a failure,’ says Oliver James, clinical psychologist and author of Britain on the Couch . ‘They’ve failed academically, or on the sports field, or sexually. That’s why so many people have recurring dreams about school examinations – it’s a way of managing anxiety. These people may desire to return to the past, but this time they want it to be a different experience, a more positive one. To be given the opportunity to do that is obviously very attractive.’ Hence all the biographies on the FriendsReunited site in which people refer to the fact that they are no longer fat or spotty, and boast that they are happily married with two gorgeous children. These people are bolstering their self-esteem, something that school – and especially the horrid little beasts in the playground – singularly failed to do.’
3 December 2001
[web] A Cunt Compendium … The Nathan Barley Extravaganza — All your favourite Cunts in one place. ‘The continuing adventures of a total wank stain.’ [Related: TVGoHome]

The most revolting Cunt I could find.

[blogs] Who or what is the Orbyt Collective? ‘So, if you, the “readership” think that Team Orbyt are a bunch of twatsticks and chimneyfuckers, tell us what you’d do differently. Prove wrong the theory that weblogging occupies the time of those unable to write and those unable to edit. Make us better.’
[watching] True Romance‘Wanna see what Spiderman number one looks like?’
4 December 2001
[comics] Classic Spider-Man Television Series 1967-1970 — New Real Audio episode every Saturday… ‘This is a true icon of television and it captures the spirit, the feel and the smell of the 1960’s Lee / Ditko / Romita era of our favorite wallcrawler.’
[distraction] Addictive Car Game — Yet another frustrating and addictive game… [via Bifurcated Rivets]
[comics] UK TV Advert for the first issue Prog of 2000AD from 1977. ‘Greetings! I am Tharg!’ [via Bugpowder]
5 December 2001
[celebs] Cruise speaks out on Cruz — Tom Cruise on Penelope Cruz and Scientology… ‘The actor vigorously defended his religion, Scientology, which he said had kept him on the straight and narrow since he was 24 years old. “I started reading books on it and I thought “God, this makes sense’,” he said.’

Who is Xenu? …described as the core belief of Scientology by Operation Clambake. ‘Once upon a time (75 million years ago to be more precise) there was an alien galactic ruler named Xenu. Xenu was in charge of all the planets in this part of the galaxy including our own planet Earth, except in those days it was called Teegeeack.’
[politics] The Guardian has the inside story on the Tory Leadership race from Ken Clarke’s campaign manager … ‘The party I joined was full of nice old people; today, it is full of nasty old people. Their hatred of gays, blacks, successful women and the European Union is as extraordinary as it is offensive. [..] They cannot be reasoned with.’
[comics] Great Frank Miller interview from the Onion AV Club‘I remember opening up this Batman comic and just basically falling into it. I can’t tell you which one it was or anything, but I just remember, the way the city was drawn, and the fact that this guy was dressed like a bat, just took my breath away. When I was doing Dark Knight, I was essentially trying to evoke that same feeling, but to an older and more sophisticated audience. Of course, the guy dresses like a bat — what kind of guy would do that? He’s got to be kind of strange.’ [via I Love Everything]
[weblogs] Watch the UK Bloggers update… Recently Updated GBlogs is back and is vastly improved — it cycles through the list of 369 GBlogs every thirty minutes to find out what has changed… [Related: Jezuk’s Version]
6 December 2001
[columbine] I’m Full of Hate and I Love It — The Secret Diary of Eric Harris… ‘Right now I’m trying to get fucked and trying to finish off these time bombs. Why the fuck can’t I get any? I mean, I’m nice and considerate and all that shit, but nooooo… […] I hate you people for leaving me out of so many fun things. And no, don’t fucking say, ‘Well, that’s your fault’ because it isn’t, you people had my phone #, and I asked and all, but no no no no no don’t let the weird looking Eric kid come along, oooh fucking nooo.” That is how the journal ends — not with the howl of the wolf-god, but the whine of the pathetic geek who can’t land a prom date. And decides everybody deserves to die.’ [via Metafilter]
[comics] Passnotes #1,967: Bobby Fischer‘[Q] Why does he hate the US? [A] Fischer, who was born in Brooklyn, believes it is part of a worldwide Jewish conspiracy to destroy him. He is being pursued for back taxes; the FBI issued an arrest warrant for playing a match against Boris Spassky in outlawed Serbia in 1992; and, worst of all, the government raided a storage depot in Pasadena and confiscated his possessions, including a large collection of comics and a signed photograph of President Nixon.’
7 December 2001
[comics] Graphic novel wins First Book AwardChris Ware wins the Guardian First Book Award for 2001 with Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth. ‘Claire Armitstead, chair of the judges and literary editor of the Guardian, said: “Jimmy Corrigan is a fantastic winner, because it so clearly shows what the Guardian First Book Award is about – originality and energy and star quality, both in imagination and in execution. Chris Ware has produced a book as beautiful as any published this year, but also one which challenges us to think again about what literature is and where it is going at the start of the 21st century.”‘
[comics] I still have overwhelming doubt about my ability — an interview with Chris Ware from The Guardian today… ‘Purposelessness. Ware likes this, the fact that the art-school snobs think his work is trivial. It strengthens his faith in the crooked path, the unorthodox way. For example, in the book, the story is interrupted by cute little sections to cut out and make into 3-D sets. Ware doesn’t imagine that anyone will actually do this. But he put them in anyway. “They hold the promise of enjoyment through lonely activity, which I like. And I’ve always thought there’s something very delicate and innocent about paper assemblage.”‘ [Related: ACME Novelty Toy Gallery]
[reaction] Heartbreaking Work — interview with Dave Eggers on his reaction to 911 … ‘They made 6,000 people, all with families and loves and dreams, into one amorphous symbol. The challenge now is for us to refrain from the same thing. Those lost do not, I don’t think, symbolize anything, nor does the attack. No act of murder can be symbolic–it’s always barbaric and should never be dignified in any such way at all. Six thousand individuals were murdered, and the best way to dignify the victims is to resist making sense of a mass murder.’ [via Bitstream]
8 December 2001
[reading] DK2‘Kids, these days. Can’t tell the difference between just plain old and classic.’
[profiles] First Among Gonzos — yet another Louis Theroux profile… ‘There have been moments when the Theroux charm hasn’t worked. “I’ve been surprised at some of the animosity,” says Clifford. “I had to take Westlife to a hospital which Louis was supposed to film. But the hospital said, ‘We don’t like the programme. We don’t want him to be there’. I suppose it’s because people think he’s taking the piss.” Although Theroux is friendly to his subjects to the point of deference, he does put some backs up. He was once found to be on a Combat 18 hit-list, proving in the nasty post-Dando world that anything is possible for a high-profile personality.’
9 December 2001
[comics] The genius of Jimmy — Raymond Briggs on Jimmy Corrigan … ‘Jonathan Cape also publish Rushdie, Amis, McEwan and Barnes, so can this mean that the modest Mr F C Ware has got a foot in the door of this pantheon? After all, his book is thicker and more expensive than theirs. Full colour throughout! And does it mean that we will live to see an ancient Dame Posy Simmonds go tottering by? ‘

Bugpowder posts a transcript of a Late Show Review of Corrigan between Tom Paulin, Dominic Lawson, Craig Brown and Miranda Sawyer. Paulin: ‘…the colours are dreadful, it’s like looking at a bottle of Domestos or Harpic or Ajax. Awful bleak colours, revolting to look at, it’s on it’s way to the Oxfam shop.’
[photoshop] Something Awful photoshops Bin Laden’s Mountain Fortress‘Wow, Osama is like a villain in a James Bond movie… except that he doesn’t speak English and doesn’t have any sexy female underlings because he thinks the sight of a woman’s bared ankle will scorch his retinas.’
10 December 2001
Spider Jerusalem microhero[comics] First there were storTroopers… then blogTroopers… now comes various Micro Heroes and Villians. [via Neilalien] More:

[celeb] Happy Camper — Independent profile of Julian Clary‘He’s done quite a few lengthy profiles over the years and I wonder how it feels, picking up a newspaper or magazine and reading all about yourself. “I always get bored halfway through. It’s a formula, isn’t it. You start with: ‘Julian turns up wearing an expensive-looking jumper and too much jewellery.’ Then it’s the potted history, which is when I glaze over, and then there might be an interesting bit at the end.” “That does sound slightly familiar,” I concede. “Change the formula,” he says. “How?” “I dunno.” “Ho-hum. That’s a nice jumper you’re wearing, Julian. Expensive?” “Yes. And rather hot.”‘
[email] Excellent post on the life-cycle of a mailing list. Stage Five: ‘Discomfort with diversity (the number of messages increases dramatically; not every thread is fascinating to every reader; people start complaining about the signal-to-noise ratio; person 1 threatens to quit if *other* people don’t limit discussion to person 1’s pet topic; person 2 agrees with person 1; person 3 tells 1 & 2 to lighten up; more bandwidth is wasted complaining about off-topic threads than is used for the threads themselves; everyone gets annoyed)’
[cartoon] Weblog Angst‘Hmm. Actually, this snot tastes pretty good.’
11 December 2001
[comics] Warren Ellis on Friends Reunited [login required] … ‘Just got back from San Francisco on a speaking gig, narrowly missing 9-11 (decided to head straight home via Chicago instead of heading into NYC to see some people — touched down at Heathrow just as the first airliner hit the WTC).’
[tv] Something weird about Louis — Gyles Brandreth interviews Louis Theroux … ‘Why did Louis decide to make a film about the Hamiltons? “For a start, I thought they’d agree, which is quite important. And I’m interested in people who invent or reinvent themselves through the media. The Hamiltons have gone from being a serious politician and his wife to being media caricatures. Also, I thought there was something more, something going on under the surface.” As he says this, Louis is pulling a strange face, making saucer eyes at me. I raise an enquiring eyebrow. He hesitates. “Possibly,” he mutters, “some mysterious dimension to their relationship . . .possibly sexual in nature.”‘
12 December 2001
[tv] Nancy Banks-Smith on Lynne and Gary’s Marriage in Eastenders‘This was the first really funny EastEnders – an astonishing novelty. Of course, little Mo was being raped and Jane was dying of cancer and Pauline was giving us her Widow Twankey, but you have to take the rough with the smooth. Gary was marrying Lynne. Their first wedding was called off when Lynne’s sister slit her wrists. This time they got as far as the registrar’s, when who should arrive but Beppe, a barely intelligible Italian with a complicated beard. Beppe usually sounds like a cough drops ad, but love gave him lucidity: “Lynne, Lynne! Don’t do this! Marry him and everybody ends up unhappy!” Everybody, in fact, ended up in the ladies loo.’
[war] Broken al-Qaida driven from their last fortress — Another report from Rory McCarthy… this time from Tora Bora. ‘To one side lay a large sheet of American metal marked “Dispenser and bomb, aircraft CBU 87B/B”, the casing for the cluster bomb unit which levelled this ridgeline. A handful of desperate mojahedin soldiers scavenged for scraps of metal among the dozens of unexploded, yellow, cylindrical anti-personnel bomblets scattered across the hillside. On a second sheet of green metal casing nearby an American soldier named Gary had scribbled his own brief marking before loading the cluster bomb into the hold of one of the B-52s. “For those whose dreams were taken,” he wrote, “here are a few nightmares. This is gonna shine like a diamond in a goat’s ass”.’
13 December 2001
[nyc] Tom Wolfe on the City of Change‘The case could be made that any post-9/11 federal appropriations to prop up business in New York should go first to the places where you can get Chilean sea bass with a Georgia plum marmalade glaze on a bed of mashed Hayman potatoes laced with leeks, broccoli rabe and emulsion of braised Vidalia onions infused with Marsala vinegar.’ [via Robot Wisdom]
[comics] Scott McCloud’s 24 Hour Comic Site — an old comic project finds a home on the web … ‘To create a complete 24 page comic book in 24 continuous hours. That means everything: Story, finished art, lettering, colors (if you want ’em), paste-up, everything! Once pen hits paper, the clock starts ticking. 24 hours later, the pen lifts off the paper, never to descend again.’ [via WEF]
[tv] When Louis met Granny — the Guardian on Louis Theroux and Christine Hamilton’s Mum … ‘”I don’t like it. You want to make money from the media, but not in this sleazy manner,” said Christine’s mother to her daughter (she barely spoke to Neil at all, except to denigrate his spoken English). “It might be good for them,” interjected Theroux. “It’s good for you, it’s not good for them,” she flashed back.’ [Related:]
14 December 2001
[comics] Reefer madness — The Furry Freak Brothers Strike Back … ‘…they live in a state of blissful torpor relieved only by bursts of paranoia or stimulant-induced frenzy. As such, theirs is a world as edenic as anything imagined by Wodehouse, albeit with references to the Birch Society, Richard Nixon, and other 1970s cultural signifiers. They age at one-fifth of the rate the outside world does, yet by the end of this volume they are already dinosaurs, grumbling with distaste at the punk rockers who mock them as stupid old farts.’
[comics] Following on from an earlier post… the official transcript of the Newsnight Review on Jimmy Corrigan … Miranda Sawyer: ‘I like the pictures.’ [via Bugpowder]
[tv] Dom Joly talks about his Home Entertainment‘We used to look at all those CCTV cameras and wonder who watched them, so we did things in front of them like mock executions of dogs. It wasn’t very funny so we slo-mo’d it, to give it pathos, then we put Passengers by U2 and Pavarotti on it and it worked. The music gives Trigger Happy totally undeserved depth – we can even drag a tear out of someone occasionally.’
15 December 2001
[distraction] Osama Smoking Gun Video — the latest translations … ‘UBL: Phil’s nowhere to be seen and Peggy’s left to run the Queen Vic Over Christmas.’ [via Metafilter]
[tv] Grange Hill’s Greatest Moments in Realplayer Format. [via I Love Everything via Kookymojo]
16 December 2001
[war] Al-Qaeda loses itself in dream world — brief look at the “dream world” of a terrorist network. ‘… the dreams of bin Laden’s followers are more rooted in a perverted surrealism than the study of Islamic history or tradition. While the surrealists used dreams to enrich reality, the fundamentalists pursue their dreams to abandon it altogether. For bin Laden and company the reality of the modern world is a chaos where soccer, aircraft, skyscrapers, moonlight deserts and pilots converge. They reject it to build a new ontological structure, this time made of bits of modernity and antiquity, nature and artifice; magical realism and a fascination with gadgetry.’
[comics] Grant Morrison talks about his plans for the New X-Men in 2002 … Morrison on issue #121 : ‘As you probably know, this sees Jean and Emma venture together into the brain of Cassandra Nova… where Charles Xavier’s consciousness is imprisoned in a symbolic landscape. Frank’s work is breathtaking… some sequences are like watching animation unfold on the page. Frank has an early-Disney-gone-bad element to his style which I love and this issue was written to really highlight that. Every page is a masterpiece of design and drawing. PLUS: Emma’s naked in this ish! AND Jean Grey is covered in sperm. And before the inevitable outcry, I hasten to add that Jean’s immersion in semen is entirely tasteful and essential to the storyline…’ [via Barbelith]
17 December 2001
[wtf] John Walker — American Taliban and Comic Collector‘Everything is mint condition except for the What If 23, and Daredevil 318 which are slightly bent in the lower right corners. These are the asking prices, but I will consider any reasonable offers.’ [Related: DD #318 and What If #23 on GCD]
[war] Bin Laden trail goes cold‘Commander Zeman insisted the ground forces attacking al-Qaida had located the terrorist overlord’s cave. When asked what it looked like, he replied: “It looked like a cave.”‘
18 December 2001
[comics] The Canny ‘X’ Men ‘”Was he not an alcoholic?” Morrison interjects. “I always thought he was called Iron Man because he had an iron liver. But that’s what I’m doing with the X Men. Taking them back to the basics. For example, Cyclops, Wolverine, you can tell what these people are just by their names.” Millar agrees. “That’s all I’ve tried to do is make things what they were. I’ve tried to strip them back…” “Naked X-Men!” says Morrison. “Eww. Would Cyclops’ eye beam out of anywhere else?” ponders Millar. “His arse? Arseclops?”‘ [via I Love Everything]
[comics] Time Magazine on the Best Comics of 2001 … On The Golem’s Mighty Swing: ‘Astonishingly, the book feels like the best baseball games: a seat-gripping drama made up of little dramas, all of which add up to something greater than just a game. Nostalgic without being saccharine, the art has the look of old baseball cards put together to tell a story.’ [via Warren Ellis Forum]
19 December 2001
[comics] Moore and Hayter Talk About Watchmen — brief mention of discussion regarding a proposed Watchmen Film … Moore: ‘Watchmen was designed as a showcase of things that comics are capable of but aren’t so easy to achieve in any other medium. […] With a comic, you can take as much time as you want in absorbing that background detail, noticing little things that we might have planted there.You can also flip back a few pages relatively easily to see where a certain image connects with a line of dialogue from a few pages ago. But in a film, by the nature of the medium, you’re being dragged through it at 24 frames per second.’
20 December 2001
[movies] A couple of distracting film trailers —

[comics] Reining in a Dark Horse — long, interesting interview with Diana Schutz … On Dave Sim: ‘What do I believe? I believe that Dave is an extraordinary human being, extremely talented and that means that he deviates from the norm. Is he fucking nuts? Any more than any other artist? I don’t know. I think he’s very, very serious about his interests and his beliefs. When he focuses on something, it tends to consume him. […] Even back in the day when I was talking to Dave on a regular basis, his thoughts moved in very different ways from most people. Not necessarily wrong, just differently. Which is often a sign of genius. I’m not a psychologist. I have no idea. I think he’s a remarkable person, extremely different from the norm, which makes him both unusual and interesting. Is he fucking nuts? Got me.’ [via Cerebus Mailing List]
21 December 2001
[war] Coming to a Mall Near You: Just War‘We don’t manufacture much of anything; just war. We don’t concern ourselves with education; just war. We don’t attend to the 40 million Americans without health coverage; just war. We don’t focus on the 30 million American children living in poverty; just war. We don’t support the arts; just war. Even though a multitude of human needs were in existence prior to September 11, and have only increased since then, we continue to direct our attention and our resources into what we do best: war. Just war.’ [via Haddock]
[xmas] Check out Marcia’s Crappy Crimbo Cards‘Bah, humbug.’
[tv] What I’ve Learned — the wit and wisdom of Homer J. Simpson … ‘What kind of fool would leave a pie on a windowsill, anyway? ‘ [via Sore Eyes]
22 December 2001
[comment] In the ruins of the future — Don DeLillo on 911. ‘Technology is our fate, our truth. It is what we mean when we call ourselves the only superpower on the planet. The materials and methods we devise make it possible for us to claim our future. We don’t have to depend on God or the prophets or other astonishments. We are the astonishment. The miracle is what we ourselves produce, the systems and networks that change the way we live and think. But whatever great skeins of technology lie ahead, ever more complex, connective, precise, micro-fractional, the future has yielded, for now, to medieval expedience, to the old slow furies of cut-throat religion. Kill the enemy and pluck out his heart.’
23 December 2001
[war] Suddenly, he was gone — Where in the world is Osama bin Laden? ‘Getting information about bin Laden’s movements is not difficult. Getting reliable information is the problem. ‘There’s one [report] every day, or many every day. It’s like Elvis sightings,’ said one exasperated US intelligence official.’
[2001] The Observer reviews 2001‘On 10 September, 2001, the front page of London’s Evening Standard was filled with the news that Kate Winslet had denied canoodling with someone somewhere. On that same day, the headline in the New York Daily News was “Kips Bay Tenants Say: We’ve Got Killer Mold”.’
[wtc] Only Love and then Oblivion — Ian McEwan on 911 … ‘If the hijackers had been able to imagine themselves into the thoughts and feelings of the passengers, they would have been unable to proceed. It is hard to be cruel once you permit yourself to enter the mind of your victim. Imagining what it is like to be someone other than yourself is at the core of our humanity. It is the essence of compassion, and it is the beginning of morality. The hijackers used fanatical certainty, misplaced religious faith, and dehumanising hatred to purge themselves of the human instinct for empathy. Among their crimes was a failure of the imagination.’
24 December 2001
[quote] “What’ll it be next? Choice extracts from the Oxford Dictionary of Quotations? Trotting out the Nietzsche and the Shelley to dignify some old costumed claptrap? Probably. Sometimes you wonder, in an interconnected universe, who’s dreaming who?” — Grant Morrison (1989)
[tvgohome] Charlie Brooker’s alternative Christmas Day TV listings‘9.30 I Love the Succession of Glittering Images Which Distract and Amuse Yet Ultimately Do Little to Quell the Boundless Sadness at My Core.’
[linkmachineSTOP] Happy Christmas. Next update will be when I’m bored of it all — probably just after The Great Escape finishes on Christmas Day… :) [Related: Great Escape on IMDB]
27 December 2001
[911] All change? … Has the world changed in the wake of September 11th? ‘The question is, did that day cut a line through history? Were the days that came before it, as Blake Morrison wrote in the Guardian later that week, “the last week of the world as it was”? In other words, will it be a day like September 3 1939, or August 4 1914: all change, and no going back. Or a day like June 28 1914, when a Serbian nationalist knocked off the heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne, Franz Ferdinand, and for a month Vienna and Berlin debated what to do? Or merely a day like April 12 1912, when the Titanic went down, 1,500 dead? Many people, especially writers and other preachers, chose to see the last as a massive symbol of hubris, God or fate teaching over-confident “western civilisation” a lesson, rather than as – the true case – a marine accident which changed nothing other than safety regulations for ships and the career of Leonardo DiCaprio.’
[xmas] ‘The world outside Norfolk can go fuck itself for one week.’
28 December 2001
[comment] Is Bin Laden a Pisces – or is he Cancer?‘So far there has been comparitively little debate about the fact that all the world’s astrologers appear to have missed any auspices pointing towards cataclysmic events and vast numbers of dead on a day which, it seems to be generally agreed, changed the course of history. While the security services were immediately condemned for their ignorance, the reputation of astrologers, who have no need of Arabic, bravery or subterfuge to interpret their celestial hints, has escaped intact, not even faintly stained by this awesome demonstration of occult incompetence. While the astrologers’ failure will not surprise anyone acquainted with the essential idiocy of their occupation, or deter the millions who rushed out to buy the predictions of Nostradamus after September 11, you might think it would lead to a little self-examination among practitioners. Not a bit.’
[comics] Ultimate interview Team-Up — interview with Brian Michael Bendis and Jim Mahfood … Bendis on the Internet: ‘I’m sick of these cowardly little weasels on the Internet, that are spewing hate towards books that they probably haven’t read in the first place, or have some agenda. That shouldn’t part of our job to deal with this. [..] We are the first generation of comic book creators that have the Internet to deal with. Could you imagine the shit that Watchmen would had to have taken if the Internet was around then? All the nonsense and whining about the series, when in reality it would have been only twelve guys saying those things…’
29 December 2001
[panto] It’s Behind You! Oh No It Isn’t! Oh Yes It Is! [via OnLine Blog]
[comics] Excellent interview with Joe Matt‘The scene in The Poor Bastard where the squirrel’s on my lap, I’m feeding a squirrel in the park and it climbs right up into my lap, and I’m yelling, `Get it off!’ It’s something that really happened, and I know it can be funny because my character’s part of me, but the only reason I would put something like that in there is, it sounds pretentious, but to me that’s symbolic of a relationship forcing itself onto me, and me not wanting it, or something.’
[911 comment] History is back with a capital H — Naomi Klien on the End of History and ObL … ‘It’s an idea we’ve heard from many quarters since September 11, a return of the great narrative: chosen men, evil empires, master plans, and great battles. All are ferociously back in style. The Bible, the Koran, The Clash of Civilizations, Lord of the Rings – all of them suddenly playing out “in these days, in our times.” This grand redemption narrative is our most persistent myth, and it has a dangerous flip side. When a few men decide to live their myths, to be larger than life, it can’t help but have an impact on all the lives that unfold in regular sizes. People suddenly look insignificant by comparison, easy to sacrifice in the name of some greater purpose. When the Berlin Wall fell, it was supposed to have buried this epic narrative in its rubble. This was capitalism’s decisive victory. Ideology is dead, let’s go shopping.’ [via Wood s Lot]
30 December 2001
[books] Ellroy’s Kafka Routine — interview with James Ellroy … ‘The essential contention of the Underworld USA trilogy volume one, American Tabloid, volume two, The Cold Six Thousand, is that America was never innocent. Here’s the lineage: America was founded on a bedrock of racism, slaughter of the indigenous people, slavery, religious lunacy …and nations are never innocent. Let alone nations as powerful as our beloved fatherland.’
[quotables] What they said in 2001 from The Observer…

‘Osama bin Laden? Typical middle child. He’s twenty-sixth out of 51’ — Overheard in New York theatre

‘Replace capitalism with something nicer’ — Banner at May Day anti-globalisation protest
31 December 2001
[comics] January 2002 Previews from Comics Worth Reading … On The Copybook Tales: ‘What joy! This series, one of my all-time favorites, is coming back into print in an omnibus volume. Contrasting modern-day young men with their earlier teenage selves, this series explored growing up and the conflicts it brings, including the conflicts between dreams and realism and enthusiasm and discouragement. J. Torres (ALISON DARE) wrote; Tim Levins (GOTHAM ADVENTURES) drew. If you can only order one book this month, get this. It’s a must-read for any comics fan.’
[blogs] If I remember one weblog post from 2001 it’ll be this one…

Metafilter Posting on 911

[by Matt Haughey on Metafilter]