Thursday, November 18, 2004

Private Eyes

They're watching you. And they see your every move.

I half-heartedly quote this song as a lead-in to a comment about the first comment I received about this blog. For which I am unexpectedly thankful, slightly bemused and fully appreciative... that someone out there (a) clearly has good (accidental) taste in bloggery, and (b) knows who Otm Shank is. And (c) is not a member of my immediate circle of friends.

Was going to make a Salo reference, held back. Anyway.

All of this prattling and non-observation brings me to The West Wing, oddly enough. Past its prime by the standards of most, I declare that it remains enjoyable, for the most part. Not grade-A Sorkin, but what else even comes close on (network) TV these days?

But why do I still watch it... hmmm... Perhaps as a last bastion of Democrat rule? A supplement for an otherwise-network-dramaless life? The comfort of the familiar? Who knows. But I mention all of this because last night's episode had a not-quite-the-level-of-Mikey-and-the-answering-machine-but-still-cringeworthy scene in which Josh attempts to do battle with a blogger, and loses.

Badly.

In other words... never underestimate the battle of the teeming hordes.

***

Listened to the new U2 on VH-1.com yesterday. Thanks to Stereogum and a number of other blogs for pointing me in that direction. To tell the truth, it wasn't half-bad... but the album smelled strongly of adult contemporary rock, if there's such a thing. The Target ad/video was bad enough, but several of the tracks (towards the middle and back-end) were simply unmemorable. And though I enjoy Coldplay as much as the next 30-year old... I dunno. Standing "How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb" or "A Rush of Blood to the Head" next to "Funeral"... well... you know what I mean. Neither of the former albums are anything more than solid and efficient AOR albums.

I'm rooting for U2-- it's clear that they're still trying hard. But they're getting uncomfortably close to their 50s, aren't they? Maybe they should pull a Jim Brown.

Just saying.

***

I love Tom Wolfe and all, and I'm excited to read his new book, I Am Charlotte Simmons, but as many critics have noted, the pleasure will almost certainly be in the always-giddy wordplay, and not in the drawwwwlin' seventy-something's horror-- horror!-- at the fact that collegians have (gasp!) intercourse. I really enjoyed A Man in Full, but by light years, the weakest episodes were those in which Wolfe adopted the stereotypical ebonics tone usually reserved for (some of) our parents' more disgraceful moments... or at least Amos 'n Andy's old routines.

The horror.

***

Back to the mines. I'd love to write more, but I am at work, after all. Mass mailings being the specialty of the day. As Billy Crystal says, "it's not fun... not fun."

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