All posts filed under: Literature

Headline Rhymes

Where some see a smirk I see an awkward kid Where some see a wise man I see a disturber of shit The question I just can’t leave alone: Where the hell were the chaperones? Views on the news, delivered so smooth. This week’s inspired by: Truth and Disfavored Identities Click for last week’s edition. And for more Headline Rhymes, follow along on Twitter @grahamverdon Do you have a Headline Rhyme? Take a stab in the Comments Section below.  Sentiments are not necessarily shared by everyone at Quillette.

Headline Rhymes

I saw an ad from Gillette Said barbecue wasn’t correct I’d wager a bet More food’s under threat And microwave popcorn is next Views on the news, delivered so smooth. This week’s inspired by: Gillette’s Progressive Politics: ‘Corinthian Leather’ for the Progressive Soul Click for last week’s edition. And for more Headline Rhymes, follow along on Twitter @grahamverdon Do you have a Headline Rhyme? Take a stab in the Comments Section below.  Sentiments are not necessarily shared by everyone at Quillette.

The Posthumous #MeToo-ing of J. D. Salinger

The first day of this year would have been the 100th birthday of J.D. Salinger, the American writer whose 1951 novel of teenage rebellion, The Catcher in the Rye, mesmerized generations and made him a cult figure. The Salinger legend was only enhanced by his reclusive life in rural New Hampshire, where he shunned interviewers and photographers and continued to write but published nothing from 1965 until his death in 2010. Given both Salinger’s literary stature and his mythic aura, the centennial should have been a big deal. And yet it went by almost unremarked—a startling fact that almost certainly has more to do with the cultural and sexual politics of this moment than with Salinger’s place in literature. It is telling that the most prominent essay on Salinger to appear in the American media so far in 2019 has been a Washington Post piece questioning whether the writer is still relevant, given that his best-known work focuses on “the anxieties of a white heterosexual young man expelled from an expensive prep school.” (By that …

Headline Rhymes

As 2018 puts its coat on and finally leaves the building We must admit the place is a mess, the climate a little chilly Now, surely we can’t change everything, after all, we’re not blank slates But 2019 is unwritten and the future is ours to make May this be the year we remember that everyone gets to speak Geniuses, fools, insufferable tools, freaks, the strong and the meek Let’s hope corporations stop de-platforming competing visions Like they’re playing at being the mafia, disappearing the competition How ’bout we judge each other by character and action In a good ol’ fashioned court of law, and not before the facts are in? And let us stop breaking apart what for millennia has worked To appease the feelings of a tiny minority with nihilistic quirks That doesn’t mean denying dignity or forgetting our compassion But it does mean a staunch rejection of unproven flights of fashion As any sort of reasonable compass or reliable foundation For any person or policy, any group or any nation May we …

Headline Rhymes

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer Had a very shiny snout And many of those around him Were inclined to snuff it out Some of the other reindeer Used to pout and curse his name They wouldn’t give him credit Insisting we’re all the same Views on the news, delivered so smooth. This week’s inspired by: Every Schoolchild Should Read This Book Academics’ Mobbing of a Young Scholar Must be Denounced Click for last week’s edition. And for more Headline Rhymes, follow along on Twitter @grahamverdon Do you have a Headline Rhyme? Take a stab in the Comments Section below. Please try for PG 13.  Sentiments are not necessarily shared by everyone at Quillette.

Confessions of a ‘Soulless Troglodyte’: How My Brooklyn Literary Friendships Fell Apart in the Age of Trump

I became friends with Jamie when I was 13, a few years after my family fled the Soviet Union and settled in what was then one of the most diverse neighborhoods of south Brooklyn. When we first met, Jamie (not his real name) told me that he was a genius—that his Catholic school teachers said so after he wrote a poem about vaginas and read it aloud in front of the whole class. He told me he wanted to be “an author.” In the 1990s, our street was a spontaneous symphony of the working poor, a place where kids bonded by trading ethnic insults in a dozen languages. I had mastered this crude local vernacular. Jamie’s ability to step outside of our street language, speak freely and dream about something larger was transfixing. Unlike Jamie, I churned through the city’s public schools without attracting much notice. My teachers did not seek genius. In high school, they were too busy keeping us from killing each other. I learned nothing and barely graduated. After Jamie went off …

Don’t Deny Girls the Evolutionary Wisdom of Fairy-Tales

The view from moral high ground is best enjoyed after the check (for whatever you’re moralizing against) clears. Rather like animal-rights activists who own a string of steakhouses, Disney film stars Kristin Bell and Keira Knightley spoke out recently against the bad examples they feel Disney princesses convey to girls. (Bell voiced the role of Princess Anna in Disney’s 2013 animated film Frozen, and Knightley stars as the Sugar Plum Fairy in Disney’s new live action feature, The Nutcracker and the Four Realms.) Knightley even used her Nutcracker promo tour to reveal that she’s banned certain Disney films from her own home. The Little Mermaid is one prohibited flick, and Cinderella is another—because, Knightley explains, Cinderella “waits around for a rich guy to rescue her.” Of course, Knightley and Bell aren’t alone in their disapproval. There’s been a war on “princess culture” for some time. Legions of pink-phobic parents all but go into mourning whenever their daughter begs for some glitter-flecked, rosy-hued item in a store—as if it might cast a spell on her, sending …

Headline Rhymes

There once was a man who was woman MVP? She was a shoe-in With hands like the feet Of those that she beat Sporting dreams of others she did ruin Views on the news, delivered so smooth. This week’s inspired by: The New Evolution Deniers A Surfeit of Empathy and an Absence of Compassion Click for last week’s edition. And for more Headline Rhymes, follow along on Twitter @grahamverdon Do you have a Headline Rhyme? Take a stab in the Comments Section below. Please try for PG 13.  Sentiments are not necessarily shared by everyone at Quillette.

Headline Rhymes

Some insist we’re a blank slate on which we write what we want Others say we’re a Kindle book where all we can change is the font I’m not slate nor tablet I’m more hat and rabbit Views on the news, delivered so smooth. This week’s inspired by: I Am Not a Blank Page A Striking Similarity: The Revolutionary Findings of Twin Studies Click for last week’s edition. And for more Headline Rhymes, follow along on Twitter @grahamverdon Do you have a Headline Rhyme? Take a stab in the Comments Section below. Please try for PG 13.  Sentiments are not necessarily shared by everyone at Quillette.

Headline Rhymes

Sad is the author who’s written a magnum opus About the moving spirit of Christmas Lamb to the slaughter if the kin of Mary and Joseph Are disapproving; enjoy the literary shit list Views on the news, delivered so smooth. This week’s inspired by: Writing For Quillette Ended My Theater Project If That’s What It Means to Be a Writer, I Quit Click for last week’s edition. And for more Headline Rhymes, follow along on Twitter @grahamverdon Do you have a Headline Rhyme? Take a stab in the Comments Section below. Please try for PG 13.  Sentiments are not necessarily shared by everyone at Quillette.