February 16, 2014

"I didn’t used to play any music in the car for the first years of my older son’s life."

"I was that hippy who believed that my son’s interactions should be with voices and conversation only," writes Mayim Bialik on her blog. With additional children, she became less austere about protecting the precious little ears and minds, and she says pop music is great candy, but:
The issue is that pop music is/has become, in some cases, kind of racy. I am generally admittedly a socially conservative fuddy-duddy even though I am a complete bleeding heart liberal politically.
She quizzes us with sex-and-drugs lines from 6 songs.
I don’t want my sons singing about magic in pants and smoking weed and booties up. Period. Right? The notion that those lyrics “go right over their heads” is actually not accurate and I don’t buy that. Words have meaning. I don’t know why Juicy J (the rapper in the Katy Perry song) wants to “put her in a coma” and I don’t want my 5- or 8-year-old asking me why either. Adult themes, especially sexual ones, don’t belong in my sons’ mouths. I’m pretty sure about that....
The reason I was reading Mayim Bialik's blog is that I enjoyed her performance on "The Bill Maher Show" this week. Maher had been deriding religionists in his usual manner (concentrating on the easy target of people who take the Bible so literally that the insist the earth is only 6,000 years old), so he asked Bialik how an intelligent, educated person like her could believe in biblical religion. She said:
I'm religious-ish. I'm observant-ish. I don't believe the Torah (or the Bible) is a science book. And there's many Jewish people who don't believe the Torah is a science book. I have no conflict in my life or universe about believing in everything that science and the universe presents us and being a person who embraces ritual and [the] notion of community.
Maher says: "But do you believe it's a wicked book?" She laughs. He repeats the question. She says: "There's some wickedness. Some prickliness. For sure."

Maher follows up: "But if it's written by a perfect guy, how could it have wickedness?" And she says: "But that's a perfect guy who has no hands or human, you know, representation, so it's a historical experience that has occurred over 6,000 years."

Suddenly, the subject of biblical religion had become interesting and relevant to people who might actually be watching Bill Maher's show. And Maher dropped it right there, said "okay," and just had to talk about the previously discussed topic of her book of vegan recipes, because that book was something he could take seriously, not the Bible, which had to remain — for "Bill Maher Show" purposes — a book good only for kicking around.

ADDED: I regret that — as I push Bialik as a smart person — I'm using a quote in the post title that has a grammatical error. I think this is an obvious but easy error to make, because it sounds right to a native speaker.  You shouldn't write "I didn’t used" It's wrong for the same reason it's wrong to "I didn't went" or "I couldn't was."

60 comments:

chickenlittle said...

"Acting Right" is now a pejorative term.

tim maguire said...

Everyone is conservative in their personal lives. (I've never met a liberal who didn't think his own taxes were too high.)

I've never met an atheist actually willing to tackle the hard problems of religious belief. It's always the easy targets with them. I have a lot more respect for people willing to address their opponents best arguments, rather than their weakest.

Julius Reincarnate said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
betamax3000 said...

I Don't Think that I Have Actually Heard a Katy Perry Song. But I Have Watched Some of Her Videos with the Sound Off.

Julius Reincarnate said...

Lady, O lady! Get some new music! Start with Andrea Bocelli and go from there... Arlo Guthie sans Alice's Restaurant. Dylan. SIMPLE MINDS!!!

Hey, look, I'm religulous... I've accepted Jesus (Yeshua, that is) as my personal savior. And if Bill Maher wants to rant about religion, well, that's just fine with me. Rage on, dude!!!

You're a non-believer. Why should we waste time on kabuki?

"I don't know what that means."

It means that you've already tried your plan, and... You've enlisted my expertise and you've rejected it to go on the way you've been going. I'm not interested in that. You can understand.

"I don't think your three months and however many thousands of dollars entitles you to refocus the core of..."

Listen, I'm not here to tell you about Jesus. You already know about Jesus. Either he lives in your heart, or he doesn't.

Eustace Chilke said...

I find religious questions mostly uninteresting and the argument over answers even less interesting. I can't find where they connect with reality. Maybe I find the whole thing irritating because attention is always drawn by the same sort of person on either side of the dispute. The point is never the means or methods of discerning truth or even the utility of a belief independently of a method. It's just a pissing match. Especially where the sneering, smug Maher is concerned. I find myself in common cause with most religionists opposed to the sort of people who tolerate no god before the state and set their truth filters accordingly. In my hell the only way to escape the sound of Bill Maher is to listen to the Obamunist preen and praise his self. Maher might win this contest but not by much. Give me a preacher over either one. And preachers make me want anesthesia.

EDH said...

The reason I was reading Mayim Bialik's blog is that I enjoyed her performance on "The Bill Maher Show" this week.

I felt the same way. You could call it a "very special episode of Blossom... er, Real Time with Bill Maher".

"Very special episode" is an advertising term originally used in American television promos to refer to an episode of a sitcom or television drama that deals with a serious or controversial social issue. The usage of the term peaked in the 1980s...

The "very special episode" is occasionally billed as "an episode your family can't afford to miss," again dramatizing the importance of the episode by insinuating the issues presented represent mandatory viewing for the responsible parent and child. Often the "very special episode" concerns a moral issue.

The term was generally used in reference to sitcoms as a way of highlighting that the normally light hearted show would be dealing with a more serious topic.

Sometimes, as in the NBC sitcom Blossom, the network wanted to find a way to warn viewers that the upcoming episode will be about a serious issue without directly putting a "parental advisory" message.

betamax3000 said...

Songs with Dirty or Suggestive Words Simply Prepare Children for the Internet.

Also: Althouse Could Edit a Video of Herself Reciting the Lyrics. 100+ Comments, Easy.

Here to Help.

William said...

Sex is becoming increasingly divorced from morality. Food is where people draw the moral lines. Many young people have anal intercourse on the dance floor on Prom Night, but those same young people are strict vegans who refuse to eat genetically modified foods.

William said...

I find I easier to believe that she's a neuroscientist than a former child star. Is that a validation of her acting skills? Anyway she's very, very funny on The Big Bang Theory.

somefeller said...

Many young people have anal intercourse on the dance floor on Prom Night, but those same young people are strict vegans who refuse to eat genetically modified foods.

Blog comment boxes are interesting places. One can learn so much about the inner/fantasy lives of people one wouldn't generally meet in the outside world.

Robert Cook said...

"'Acting Right' is now a pejorative term."

When wasn't it?

Robert Cook said...

"I've never met an atheist actually willing to tackle the hard problems of religious belief."

What do you mean? What are "the hard problems of religious belief?"

Joan said...

Maher just sounds ignorant when he says things like the Bible was "written by the perfect guy." We all know that the Bible was written by many men over thousands over years of history, and then compiled. The belief that the writing in the Bible is divinely inspired is not the same thing as saying that God wrote the Bible, yet Maher insists on talking about it as if it does.

And there's plenty of great music out there for little kids. With Pandora and other program-your-own-radio-station apps out there, there is absolutely no reason to listen to anything you don't want to.

betamax3000 said...

Now, THIS was Edgy:

I have a sad story to tell you
It may hurt your feelings a bit
Last night as I walked into my bathroom
I stepped in a big pile of ...
Shaving cream, be nice and clean
Shave every day and you'll always look keen...

...And now folks my story is ended
I think it is time I should quit
And if anyone of you feel offended
Push your head in a bucket of ...
Shaving cream, be nice and clean
Shave every day and you'll always look keen

Paul Zrimsek said...

Any "hard problem of religious belief" that persists even after you've disposed of the existence of God, must be a hard problem indeed.

tim maguire said...

Well Paul, you have not disposed of the existence of god. Atheism is just another fundamentalist religion. You deny what you are--that's why the rest of us find you insufferable.

Mr. Cook, one example would be how very susceptible people are to religious belief (Paul, above, for instance) coupled with the fact that people who give in to a belief that includes a god are, on average, happier, nicer, more thoughtful, more charitable (both time and money) than people who don't.

In light of the facts, what sane person wouldn't at least want to be a believer in a higher power?

Paul Zrimsek said...

Well Paul, you have not disposed of the existence of god.

If that's your example of a hard problem, you're saying that you've never really met an atheist willing to tackle the question of whether God exists. I find this... implausible.

Atheism is just another fundamentalist religion.

I suppose the question of what, if anything, this oft-heard sentence is supposed to mean, could count as one of the hard problems of religious belief.

n.n said...

God is an entity which exists outside of time and space (i.e. universe), with some ability to manipulate time and space. The Torah is a record of his moral philosophy, as well as historical accounts of the people who succeeded, but mostly failed, to follow its principles. It advises of basic principles (e.g. evolutionary), and encourages people to rationally exploit the natural world to improve their condition.

As for wickedness, more people have been murdered/aborted, raped, enslaved, and generally exploited, by people who have rejected the Judeo-Christian philosophy than who have lived by it. The communists (Russian, Chinese, etc.) were atheists. The socialists (e.g Germans) were atheists. However, ultimately, a philosophy cannot be judged by the exceptional success or failure of individuals.

halojones-fan said...

I think it was "High Fidelity", where John Cusak has a rant that goes something like:

"People worry that violent media is going to make our kids turn into killers because of what they see. During my teenage years I listened to literally *thousands* of songs about heartbreak, pain, rejection, loss. Did I listen to this music because I was miserable, or was I miserable because I listened to this music?"

orthodoc said...

What do you mean? What are "the hard problems of religious belief?"

Not being a religious person myself, I would venture a guess that the hard problems include
a. loving the sinner but hating the sin
b. addressing the dichotomy of imperfect reality with the vision of perfection inherent in most religions
c. the conflict between wanting to "bring people to the light" and wanting to leave said people alone.

Revise as needed.

Paco Wové said...

Mayim Bialik apparently has a Ph.D. in neuroscience. That's pretty cool.

Jupiter said...

"In light of the facts, what sane person wouldn't at least want to be a believer in a higher power?"

Are you saying that you choose your beliefs? You could just choose to believe, say, that cars are made out of chocolate chips? And you would so choose, if it seemed likely that it would make you feel better? That is, if you chose to believe that it would make you feel better?

rhhardin said...

Levinas Difficult Freedom begins with a chapter "A religion for adults."

The idea is that religion is the poeticization of ethics.

"God is merciful" means "Be merciful like him."

I think later in the same book, or maybe in another of his, "Who takes on the suffereing of the world if not the person who says "me"? Everybody is the Messiah."

Which explains Christianity, as well as Messianism in Judaism.

Saint Croix said...

Josie and the Pussycats is a live action movie based on a cartoon I used to watch when I was a kid. It opens with a romantic song about a boy and his girl and how the two of them enjoy anal sex. Nice. Classy. Just what you want your 6th grader to be singing in the carpool. Lovin' in the Backdoor, I think is the name of the song. And you thought it was going to be innocent fun at the movies, like the Scooby Doo movie. You probably weren't expecting to be fielding anal sex questions from your 10-year-old. I'm in favor of mass confusion at that age. "They're singing about a doggy door. Except it's for cats."

Patrick O said...

So, on Friday, I went to the Annual Philosophy of Religion Conference hosted by Claremont Graduate University.

There, some of the top scholars talked about the theme of hope. I note this because it's a curious thing that when science is discussed, people go straight to the leading scientists. But when religion is discussed in popular forums, the trend is to go to the least educated or ignorant. Mayim Bialik is not a scholar of religion, but she is quite intelligent and educated and shows how the conversations might be, and maybe why some like Maher doesn't want them to be like that.

The main speaker on Friday evening was one of the most important theologians, maybe the most important, of the last 50 years and probably more. My dissertation featured his work. He's both rigorously academic and passionately spiritual, passionately a Christian.

It's a shame the public conversation doesn't include people like this more. But then it would be hard for Maher to pose as superior if he talked with someone like Moltmann.

I hope Claremont posts some stuff from the conference--video or text--but just in case they don't, I recorded Moltmann's lecture. Have a listen if you're curious what thoughtful Christian theology is like.

tam said...

Back when I was trying to be an atheist, because only nerds believe in God, the hard question I couldn't answer was "If there is no God, there are no such things as good or evil. But, I know there are such things as good and evil. So how can I logically assert that there is no God?"

phx said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Crack Emcee said...

"No one has forced Mrs. Baker or Mrs. Gore to bring Prince or Sheena Easton into their homes. Thanks to the Constitution, they are free to buy other forms of music for their children. Apparently, they insist on purchasing the works of contemporary recording artists in order to support a personal illusion of aerobic sophistication.

One of the things that has been brought up before is talking about very young children getting access to the material that they have been showing here today. And what I have said to that in the past is a teenager may go into a record store unescorted with $8.98 in his pocket, but very young children do not.

If they go into a record store, the $8.98 is in mom or dad’s pocket, and they can always say, Johnny, buy a book. They can say, Johnny, buy instrumental music; there is some nice classical music for you here; why do you not listen to that.

The parent can ask or guide the child in another direction, away from Sheena Easton, Prince, or whoever else you have been complaining about. There is always that possibility."


Frank Zappa

rcocean said...

I've always considered Bill Maher the deepest thinker at HBO. And a real iconoclast who goes after the sacred cows.

Its why the Establishment hates him.

Plus, he's pretty damn sexy. I can't believe he's not married.

SteveR said...

No significant conversation about religion or god, can be initiated by, or include anything having to do with Bill Mahar. At best, he's just another soul that God will deal with, no better or worse than mine. At worst he's an annoying smart ass who lives off the attention of other annoying smart asses.

John Althouse Cohen said...

The issue is that pop music is/has become, in some cases, kind of racy.

Here are some examples of some of the lyrics that concern me. See if you can guess the artist who sings songs with these lyrics.

1. "Please please me, oh yeah, like I please you."

2. "I'd love to turn you on."

3. "I get high with a little help from my friends."

4. "Let's spend the night together. I'll satisfy your every need, and I now know you will satisfy me."

5. "No one will be watching us — why don't we do it in the road?"

6. "She's the one that yells for more, more, more, more!"

7. "I got so sick of having sleepless nights. I went and told my dad. He said, 'Son now here's some little something,' and stuck them on my wall. And now my nights ain't quite so lonely. In fact, I don't feel bad at all. Pictures of Lily made my life so wonderful. Pictures of Lily let me sleep at night."

8. "Well, listen to me, baby, try to understand: I'd rather see you dead, little girl, than to be with another man. Now, baby... I want to play house with you."

9. "He hit me, and it felt like a kiss. He hit me, and I knew he loved me. If he didn't care for me, I could have never made him mad. But he hit me, and I was glad."

10. "I heard you shot your old lady down. You shot her down in the ground, yeah! ... Shoot her one more time again, for me!"

sunsong said...

Belief is something that can’t be controlled, as much as there are people who want to control the rest of us. You can believe whatever you want to. You can believe the world is flat. You can believe that because of your beliefs you are separate from and superior to the rest of humanity. You can believe that God is Love, except when He is not. You can believe whatever you want to.

And so can everyone else. That’s the wonderful part, imo. Just because you believe something doesn’t mean it is true or that others have to accept it. Everyone is free to explore ideas, to question ideas, to accept or reject ideas based on their own criteria. Does that make sense to me? Does that “feel” right to me? ( yeah feel) Does that feel beautiful and good to me? Is it in line with what I imagine Love to be? Is that the meaning I would give the word?

Some people like to be told what to believe and to think about it. And that is their choice. They are free to believe what they are told. They are free to obey. Others of us will not be told what to believe and would consider blind obedience to be irreverent. Life here is complex.

It makes sense to me to be concerned about what one’s children are listening to without wanting to

betamax3000 said...

@ John Althouse Cohen

I Think there Are a Lot of Blurred Lines between the Raciness of 'Then' and the Raciness of 'Now.'

betamax3000 said...

I just got word from a guy who heard
From the guy next door to me,
That a girl he met just loves to pet,
And it fits you to a "T".
So don't sit under the apple tree with anyone else but me, and
Don't Have Anal Sex Under the Apple Tree, Either, Ho.

Ah, Yesteryear...

mtrobertsattorney said...

An example of a hard problem for religion (or philsophy, take your pick)is the question of good and evil. Most reflectilve atheists agree that beliefs about what is good and what is bad are, in the last analysis, social constructs. Of course, this means what is considered good or evil will vary from culture to culture.

This answer raises a second question: who is it that shapes these constructs. And here is where Nietzsche arrives on the scene with his answer: It is the Ubermensch, the Superman who is beyond good and evil and who believes justice is the will of the stronger.

Now that God is dead for most of Western Culture's intellectual class, and the traditional beliefs about good, evil and beauty dead or dying, the decaying West, no longer able to create any true art, awaits an Ubermensch who will create new and radical beliefs about what is good and what is evil. And armed with this new set of ethical beliefs, the West will rise and recapture its long lost grandeure.

This is an example of a hard problem.

Iconochasm said...

tim maguire said...
Well Paul, you have not disposed of the existence of god. Atheism is just another fundamentalist religion. You deny what you are--that's why the rest of us find you insufferable.


Other atheists find internet atheists insufferable too. It's more a function of being 15 and hating their parents than any particulars about their beliefs. See 15 year old socialists and Objectivists for comparison.

Mr. Cook, one example would be how very susceptible people are to religious belief (Paul, above, for instance)

Personal theory time! Religion grew as a result of a sort of power-saving mode in the brain. In a primitive society, calories are a scarce resource. Thinking burns them, at a surprisingly high rate. Thus, when faced with intractable questions, the person willing/able to just stop wondering has a survival advantage. The guy who is willing to just accept that lightning comes from some dude in the clouds will have a comparative advantage over the guy who spends all night in the cave wracking his brain over the issue. But that only applies to intractable questions, making that susceptibility to accepting easy answers a liability in many other situations. Hence compartmentalization. Religious answers for questions we probably can't figure out, rational answers for everything else. The end result: The God of the Gaps.

coupled with the fact that people who give in to a belief that includes a god are, on average, happier, nicer, more thoughtful, more charitable (both time and money) than people who don't.

On the charity, I don't know that we can separate that out from non-religious factors, given the degree of overlap between [religious and conservative] and [atheist and progressive]. I'd also be curious to see numbers that only counted donations to churches to the extent that those donations were actually used in charitable purposes.

But your other points are valid. Existential terror and nihilism are bitches. It would be rather a relief if you guys were correct, instead of just delusional.

In light of the facts, what sane person wouldn't at least want to be a believer in a higher power?

Because there's absolutely no reason to think that that is the case?

wildswan said...

There are ten hard questions of the Christian religion that come to mind - the ten commandments, each one a question - am I going to do this? Because God? Is He? And why is this a command, not a guideline? and on to the next.

All the people who died in World War I and then the others who died in the flu epidemic - why not Hitler and Margaret Sanger?

Why the Irish Famine?

John Lynch said...

Pop music is low class. Of course an educated person isn't going to let her children listen to it. By "educated" I mean upper class.

I'm not upper class, but I still don't let my son listen to terrible music. Nor does he have a TV in his room, nor does he go on the internet unsupervised.

By supervised, I mean with an adult watching him. My son can outsmart any software that's supposed to keep him off of the internet. He figured out how to get to Wikipedia from Google Earth, then figured out how to get to other websites by clicking the reference links.

Parenting is time and attention consuming. Cut corners and your children will be diving into "pop" culture with no guidance.

It's funny how the problem used to be that "how the other half lives" was hidden from the middle class. Now we can't get away from it.

Birches said...

I note this because it's a curious thing that when science is discussed, people go straight to the leading scientists. But when religion is discussed in popular forums, the trend is to go to the least educated or ignorant.

Well said.

Kirk Parker said...


Somefeller,

If you don't realize what an immense, and rapid, moral inversion has taken place in these two subject areas, this article may help.



Crack,

You gotta admit when Mr. Zappa is wise, he's very very wise. (I'm not venturing any estimates on what part of his output was wise, though.)


JAC,

Not sure what your point is.


Iconochasm,

"The God of the Gaps."

Oh, please, not this again. It explains too much, and thus--ultimately--nothing.

Unknown said...

Mayim Bialik is a bit of a head case. Taking religious instruction from Bialik and Maher brings to mind the million monkeys on a typewriter. Maybe they can get something sensible, but...

Unknown said...

God made man in His image, and man is required to strive to act in accordance with that image. Since the beginning of recorded history, man has made bastardized images of nature and man in an attempt to control nature by obeisance to the image. A "scientific model" of morality and goodness fabricated from a bad fit to the scientific method does not make it any less idol.

Freeman Hunt said...

It would never occur to me to turn on radio music in the car, with kids or without.

Kirk Parker said...

Freeman,

Are you anti-background-music, or just someone who realizes the car audio system contains a (a) CD player, (b) aux input jack, or (c) bluetooth audio input?

:-)

Freeman Hunt said...

I'm anti-background music. If something is on, it's on to listen to actively and was specially selected and played through the CD player or some kind of adapter.

So, both.

During most rides, however, nothing is playing.

Kirk Parker said...

(I'm anti-background music. )

You must be my long-lost sister, then.

All my musician buddies have stuff blasting all the time at home; for me, if I'm not going to actively listen to it why would I want it distracting me?

The car, however, is a different matter (though my kids have all long since flown the coop, so it's not like I need to interact with them while I'm driving.) Back when I was regularly performing, driving was one of my primary song-learning times. (Yeah, please don't tell my auto insurance agent, ok???)

Livermoron said...

Robert Cook: Religion is faith. The hard problems are when faith and perceived reality conflict. For example, you have a religious belief that the Nazis were right-wing conservatives...despite all the evidence that proves otherwise.
You personally avoid the hard-questions that arise when your religious belief is challenged and run away.
Jehovah's Witnesses do the opposite.
Maybe because they have better arguments for their belief system than you have for yours.

Freeman Hunt said...

if I'm not going to actively listen to it why would I want it distracting me?

Exactly.

And driving time is good thinking time.

Kirk Parker said...

Freeman,

"And driving time is good thinking time."

Totally agree! It's just that, when I had a monthly gig with mostly-new songs to perform each time, my thoughts were often all around: Holy Crap, when am I going to get a chance to learn XYZ before our next rehearsal??? :-)

Henry said...

I don't get it. I did a search for "puff" (the magic dragon) and got zero hits.

Revenant said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Revenant said...

It isn't hard to find kid-friendly music, especially for younger kids.

Kirk Parker said...

Henry:

<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Douglas_AC-47_Spooky>Puff the Magic Dragon</a>. Heh.

Robert Cook said...

"...coupled with the fact that people who give in to a belief that includes a god are, on average, happier, nicer, more thoughtful, more charitable (both time and money) than people who don't."

Are they? How do you know? Given that a majority of people claim to have a belief in God, isn't it likely that a majority of people who are unhappy, not nice, uncharitable, and thoughtless are people who believe in God?

ken in sc said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Robert Cook said...

"An example of a hard problem for religion (or philsophy, take your pick)is the question of good and evil. Most reflectilve atheists agree that beliefs about what is good and what is bad are, in the last analysis, social constructs. Of course, this means what is considered good or evil will vary from culture to culture.

"This answer raises a second question: who is it that shapes these constructs."


Codification as to what is good and evil arise as social taboos against those behaviors that are harmful or disruptive to the successful continuation of the species/society.

We are animals, and we must fulfill our needs for food, shelter, and we are driven by the instinct to mate. When we become gluttonous in seeking these things--when we become greedy and lustful--we can behave in ways that are harmful to ourselves, or others, (or both), and that, by extension, harm social order. We cannot have a social order without a degree of trust and cooperation, and if we must be fearful at all times that our fellows may kill us, or steal from us, or take our mates from us, there can be no trust and therefore no social order.

Most acts deemed as sinful or evil are acts that are considered to be, one way or another, destructive of social order and cohesion.

This is very general and broad, of course.

Unknown said...

Robert Cook --- basking in ignorance, come into the light.

http://news.uk.msn.com/religious-people-more-charitable-62

http://ideas.time.com/2013/11/26/religious-people-are-more-charitable/

http://news.discovery.com/history/religion/religion-happiness-social-bonds.htm

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/death-love-sex-magic/201212/are-religious-people-happier-non-religious-people


Why Are Christians Having Better Sex Than the Rest of Us?

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2008/11/25/the-christian-sexual-awakening.html

http://www.usnews.com/news/articles/2013/07/17/devout-catholics-have-better-sex

Crazy Jane said...

Some years ago, a San Francisco newspaper columnist acknowledged a critic who typified much of the printed blather of the day as "little epiphanies."

Maybe it is time to apply the term to posts in the New York Times. As usual, big things are happening: Syria, Ukraine, Argentina, the Congo, persistent worldwide econonomic stagnation, even Sochi. But the Times commentariat remains obsessed with its little epiphanies about things like children hearing nasty song lyrics.

These people seem to think they are blazing new ground by marrying and/or raising children, working through romantic problems (Modern Love, anyone?), trying to get their children into A-list colleges and mastering sous vide technique.

There's a big world out there, and the Times is (presumably) paying stringers for self-absorbed meditations on little epiphanies.

Ugh.

Rob McLean said...

You could just choose to believe, say, that cars are made out of chocolate chips?

I'd hate to wake up in the morning, late for work, and find out my car had been chopped up and baked into cookies. (If they offered me a lift and gave me some of the cookies, well...)