April 28, 2012

"But, has anyone else been as creeped-out on this blog, as I've been lately?"

Says Jay Vogt, off topic, in the "Science of sitting" post. He continues:
Over the past two days, we been presented with posts on giant cannibal shrimp, revenge by extraneous dentistry, testicular mutilation, necrophilia, the legal writings of Ruth Bader Ginsburg and infanticide. 
I'm not sure that I'm up for much more work on this vein.

I haven't been this upset since I attended the the brunch reception for the debut screening of "The Cook, the Thief, His Wife And Her Lover."
Funny, just as you were writing that, I was doing a new post about the "inescapable shame of being a storyteller." Maybe there's an inescapable shame of being a blogger. But if it's any consolation, years ago, I went to "The Cook, the Thief, His Wife And Her Lover," and, leaving at the end, I felt very uncomfortable just to be in the crowd of people who had seen it.

Now, Jonathan Franzen has a memoir called "The Discomfort Zone." I don't think you're supposed to feel comfortable. I like that book. I've read it. Another book I've read and liked is "Don't Get Too Comfortable," by David Rakoff, which has the subtitle "The Indignities of Coach Class, The Torments of Low Thread Count, The Never- Ending Quest for Artisanal Olive Oil, and Other First World Problems," so you see the idea there.

Franzen also has a new book of essays, which I just bought. It's "Farther Away." (I guess you're supposed to feel alienated.) It contains his essay about David Foster Wallace that was what David Haglund shamed him about.

Is this blog making you uncomfortable?

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Ron said...

You've gotten weirder over time...but I shrug at that...as long as I feel I get a nugget or two, you can howl at the moon if you like.

Unlike many here, I'm easily pleased.

edutcher said...

Went with 4.

Ann likes to challenge her readers and that means an eclectic mix.

And Jay just recounts what you'll find in the news.

Spooky times in which we live.

Maguro said...

The Cook, the Thief, His Wife And Her Lover was some weird shit. To this day, I have no idea what it was about.

AJ Lynch said...

Since I am non compos mentos most of the time, it is not likely that I could ever detect any trends in your posts.

AJ Lynch said...

Though I admit Ruth Bader Ginsburg [has she been embalmed pre-mortem?] should freak out the normal person.

m stone said...

As informative as they were at the time, the capitol antics posts, thankfully, have been dropped.

Silliness is better that commenting on stupid.

Tim said...

What's creepy is how so many football pundits are discounting the 'Niners draft choices this weekend.

That, and America is full of zombies who will vote for Obama again. It seems eating brains makes one dumb.

wyo sis said...

I find lots of interesting places by following your links.

wyo sis said...

I hope that's not damning with faint praise. I find a lot to think about here is what I mean to say.

Tim said...

Maguro said...

"Te Cook, the Thief, His Wife And Her Lover was some weird shit. To this day, I have no idea what it was about."

Agreed. Weird shit. About criminals and cannibalism.

It's like Peter Greenaway anticipated Barack 19 years before his time.

Weird shit.

Tim said...

"The Cook, the Thief, His Wife And Her Lover

And adultery and murder too.

Good times.

Ann Althouse said...

Hey, the least popular choice is the one I believe to be the correct answer.



Tyrone Slothrop said...

You know what's weird? The way commenters come and go here. I suppose most disappear because they despair of making any headway with us boneheads. I think Crack Emcee probably fits that category. Others may feel insulted or hurt or ignored, like Trooper York. Some probably get tired of the inevitable shouting matches. Others just fade away. I have felt myself fading away at times, then Althouse posts something and I will have an opinion that I simply must expose to all you nearly complete strangers. So where do they all go? Where are you victoria, hdhouse, Alpha Liberal, former law student, et al.? I need closure.

bagoh20 said...

I'm just incredibly turned on by it all. I feel like I'm sixteen again and watching a cheerleader throw up for the first time. Maybe we've gone too far...and going forward is easier than going back.

bagoh20 said...


Sometimes when a few of them leave, it's really just one with his sock drawer in tow.

AJ Lynch said...

FLS - Tyrone just made me realize he has not been here for a while!

I am the same way Tyrone - then the vortex pulls me back in and my work pulls me out again.

Michael K said...

There is a growing trend separating the normal people and the self-anointed. The latter are quite worried about it.

traditionalguy said...

The heavy stuff weighs me down. But that's what golf and symphonies are for.

I learned tonight that my favorite symphony album as a child was by a Jewsish composer whose work was trashed by Wagner and his boy Hitler for being Jewish Music. Who knew.

The Mendelssohn #1 in G minor Opus 25 (1831) featured an amazing 22 year old pianist named Behzod Abduraimov . He is from Tashkent and got his start at age 8 playing with the National Symphony of Uzbekistan. He is studying in Kansas of all places now. Expect big things from this 5'5'' dynamo. He got 4 standing ovations until he finally played another few minutes for us.

The evening's theme was Jewish composers and included Schubert's #8 as completed by Marcel Tyberg shortly before Tyberg was transported to Auschwitz and murdered.

There was a great piece by Mieczyslaw Weinberg who escaped to Moscow before the rest of his family was exterminate by the Nazis. He wrote Rhapsody on Moldavian Themes Opus 25 (1949)based upon Jewish folk music, originally named Rhapsody on Jewish Themes, but renamed to allow it to be played at a Party Congress in Moscow.

If you ever have a chance, don't miss that one. It will reset your spirit no matter how much evil stuff has been discussed recently.

Canuck said...

Greneaway's Prospero's Books & drowning by numbers. Ok-already-you're trying to shock me-yeah-yeah-kind-of-boring. Some of the imagery was interesting.

Tyrone Slothrop said...

Mendelssohn's father Abraham rejected Judaism and Felix was raised without religious instruction. Abraham had refused circumcision for his son, and Felix was baptized as a Lutheran at the age of seven. Of course the Nazis would have maintained that the Mendelssohns were Crypto-Jews, since that would have fed into their view of Jews as deceivers. Probably Abraham was an atheist who wished to assimilate.

As for being trashed by Wagner, I can think of no greater honor. As Mark Twain said, "Wagner's music is better than it sounds."

yashu said...

When I first saw it (at an impressionable age), I loved The Cook, the Thief, His Wife, & Her Lover.

Later-- when I read reviews claiming it was meant to be a political allegory for Thatcher's England-- my fondness cooled. Cooled intellectually. I haven't watched it in years-- but but I think a part of me will always love it.

Who cares what "they" claim it represents? I still love the gloriousness of Helen Mirren, one of the best (most evil) villains ever, the multi-sensuality of it all, one of the quintessential cinematic coincidences of the ultra-romantic and ultra-sordid, the fascinating many-layered (many-colored) world of the chef/ restauranteur (a fascination I've alluded to on another Althouse post today), a mise-en-scene that's at once ultra-aesthetic and ultra-visceral... a drama at once cold as frostbite and scorchingly passionate.

And such a satisfying denouement/ revenge.

james conrad said...

Creeped- out? uhhhhhhhhh, nooooo, I figure AA is no less nor more weird than most. She blogs about stuff that interests her and sometimes it interests me as well.

Jay Vogt said...

Ann Said, "But if it's any consolation, ..., I went to "The Cook, the Thief, His Wife And Her Lover," and, leaving at the end, I felt very uncomfortable just to be in the crowd of people who had seen it."

I had a very similar response. I went with several close friends, one of whom I eventually married. I didn't feel like being around any of them for a while.

That said, I much appreciate the digital real estate devoted to my "creep-outedness". To be clear though and to make a minor point, I noted that I had been feeling "creeped-out on the blog. Pointedly I did non write "by" the blog.

I do however maintain that there is a realm of of creepiness. And further, I assert that within that realm are the following: giant cannibal shrimp, revenge by extraneous dentistry, testicular mutilation, necrophilia, the legal writings of Ruth Bader Ginsburg and infanticide.

Taken one or two at a time, they are perfectly good and interesting topics. However, taken over their recommended dosage they definitely alter the atmosphere.

That's something our host does from time to time - sometimes purposely, sometime not. I was merely wondering if this was one of the former or one of the later.

If it was an example of the former, I wanted to be the first to call her out on it. If the later, merely to note an unappealing (at least to me) editorial drift.

wildswan said...

I didn't even notice that stuff was on the blog because stuff I don't like I don't read. If I were to analyze I would think that law students must be very upset about something - maybe life after graduation in this economy - and their professor is reflecting it. But does it mean they support Obama or not?

Blue@9 said...

I like the array of strange topics. Many are articles I have already read, or articles I would have read if I had come upon them myself. AA has an interesting mind, and whether or not I agree with her on particular issues, I sure wouldn't mind having a conversation with her over wine and cigarettes.