15 Comments

  1. the second from the left looks sexy and strong yet intellectually demanding and ultimately and refresingly life-affirming, with a radical stance on a little-known but highly-sensitive issue not yet voiced to the public that only the guy on the right knows about so far

  2. the second from the right looks like he has evolved the ability to sense terrible events from up to 200 miles away, but has kept it secret due to professional reasons and fear of the CIA removing his brain from his body and encasing it in a water tank inside another water tank with sharks in it

  3. the one on the right looks like he has uncontrollable urges to go home immediately in order to reread the first story about the peacock in raymond carver’s story-collection ‘cathedral.’ he has these urges only when he is inside the n+1 office.

  4. i messed up. the first comment should be ‘the second from the right’ (the one who is standing)

    the second comment should be ‘the second from the left’ (the one looking down)

  5. the one on the left looks like he just beat philip roth into a pulp and then separated his philip-roth pulp into 243 ziplock bags to use in smoothies on his trip to nicaragua which he is planning for next summer but is already losing interest in, though some nights he wakes up at 3 a.m. screaming, ‘NICARAGUA!’

  6. Saturday 17 March 2007. 8:57 AM

    Sir—

    Of course the n+1 photograph is staged, as photographs necessarily are; of course it is funny-looking, because people are funny-looking. Look at those goons, with their two ears, with their teeth and eyeglasses and their two arms and legs, sitting or standing. What a bunch of silly monkeys.

    Why stop there? Check out this glamour shot:
    http://nycphoto.interactivenyc.com/archives/photos/BEA/rest/IMG_1116.jpg

    Look for me, too, if you want. I’m lucky enough to share a common name with an apparently successful child actor, but no one stays lucky forever. Photography is a technology for preserving embarrassing moments, and all moments are embarrassing.

    The character of this kerfuffle, here and elsewhere, demonstrates the truth of at least one proposition in “The Blog Reflex,” however otherwise mistaken it may be: “People might have used their blogs to post the best they could think or say. [but] In practice, blogs reveal how much we are unwitting stenographers of hip talk and marketing speak, and how secondhand and often ugly our unconscious impulses still are. The need for speed encourages, as a willed style, the intemperate, the unconsidered, the undigested.”

    Making fun of the way other people look is the product of an ugly impulse. I do it in private almost without ceasing. But doing it publicly is “intemperate, unconsidered, [and] undigested.” If n+1 is wrong, prove them wrong.

    Yours,
    J. D. Daniels

  7. No one has to work to discredit lit-bloggers. They’re working hard enough to discredit themselves.
    (The “Worst Literary Magazine on the Market”?? Worse than the hundreds of generically unreadable university rags like Missouri Review? Worse than scores of McSweeney’s knock-offs like Pindledyboz?)
    An observation about the main lit-blogger community, if I may. (It’s unusual for me to be an objective observer in one of these disputes.)
    If anything, lit-bloggers, AS A GROUP, are worse than the mainstream. More capable of Groupthink. More intolerant of dissent (certainly of the ULA’s), and ready, like a small town monitored by gossipy old ladies named Sarvas and Champion to ostracize those they disagree with, or who don’t fit in.
    E-mails? I’ve exchanged e-mails with Keith Gessen also– some of them contentious– and with you as well, Ed. I’m in a position to judge which individual has more character, backbone, and integrity.
    The campaign I’m involved in, with the Underground Literary Alliance, is a kind of test of individuals’ liberal principles. ULAers are not your usual writers. We’re from the lower half of society, for the most part; a few from the bottom-most levels. Few of us have college degrees. Most of us have lived distinctly rough-and-tumble lives. We’re not your mother’s literary organization. We’re also very outspoken and in-your-face. (Because of our position as total outsiders in this society, we have to be.)
    Our anarchic behavior and radical ideas raise the question:
    Who in the lit-world genuinely believes in free expression, and who doesn’t?
    So far, Gessen and his gang, ideological opponents of ours, who I’ve criticized heavily, have passed the test of the ULA’s presence with flying colors. Gessen’s for real. From what I can determine, n+1 is the genuine article.
    You, on the other hand, my man, have failed the test. In my opinion you’re a narrow-minded fake.
    Anyway, I have a show to promote. See ya around. Have a good day.

  8. Tao is the only person (and it amuses me that not even the Valve guys, with their ivory tower intellectualism, could see this) who has observed the irony behind this post, which is predominantly about how superficial this whole kerfuffle is (i.e., comparable to judging Keith Gessen and company from a clearly staged photgraph) and how we are all judging each other based on minor snippets that don’t approximate who we are and don’t approximate the whole.

  9. I’m going to guess, Ed, that no one sees the irony (and I doubt Tao does either) because the post title and the link to another site ripping on n+1 are not ironic.

  10. Saturday 17 March 2007. 1:12 PM

    Sir—

    A fifteen-word post that requires 77 words of exegesis is an incompetently written post. One of the advantages of being a sloppy writer is that sloppiness leaves you room to plead “irony”—just another word for pretending that you didn’t mean it with all the considerable spite your heart could muster.

    Scott Eric Kaufman, a patient and perspicacious writer, has some generous, intelligent things to say about your approach to this matter, and about the matter in general, here:
    http://www.thevalve.org/go/valve/article/n1_vs_lit_bloggers/#comments

    Yours,
    J. D. Daniels

  11. Mr. Daniels: Fair enough, sir, and I’m happy to admit that my attempt at irony here failed among some readers (as I did in my most recent comment at TEV). Now can we move on? Surely, this navel gazing is beneath even your estimable sensibilities.

  12. I would not describe you, as you describe yourself to readers of The Valve, as “a thuggish intellectual.” I’m curious what kind of person is proud to advertise himself as a thug—a brutal, violent criminal. I’m guessing a passionate, sensitive, fragile young man: the Clark Kent type who becomes a Superman on the other side of his keyboard.

    I’ve been a Moon Knight fan since I was a boy, and I was happy to listen to your Bat Segundo interview with Charlie Huston, even though it was childish. Comic books are childish. Huston’s Moon Knight teaches us that a willingness to use violence and an eagerness to experience pain—sadomasochism, in a word—will solve most problems. This is not true. But if you suffer from this delusion, it can be a relief to visit a fantasy world where wounding other people and being wounded by them does not have horrifying ramifications.

    The internet, where childish behavior has no immediate consequences, is also such a world.

  13. In my opinion, this thread and some of the others on the same topic (one of which had such utter misogynistic shit posted) illustrate the literary world overall: sexist and exclusionary, males publishing males, males talking to males, males talking about males, males fighting with males–males-males-males! You all need to get naked and wrestle like in Women In Love and post pictures of it, then this ongoing argument will be very exciting. Right now–BOOOOORing.

    I’m reminded of something about life with homo sapiens sapiens, take Bush and Hussein for example: many people assumed that because Hussein was an asshole and Bush hated him that Bush was a stellar person, that Bush wasn’t an asshole too. Unfortunately, those many people didn’t realize that sometimes both sides are asshole sides.

    Or are at least acting like assholes.

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