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I forgot to offer a formal intro to the first batch of guest-posters. Hua Hsu has written for The Atlantic, (the print version) most recently--I think--publishing this cover-story. He also writes for the culture channel from time to time. I met Hua almost seven years ago over pizza and beer with a bunch of other, fellow disgruntled music writers. In person, he was incredibly low-key. But with a pen in hand, he's loud as a bumrush. Hua is a professor of English at Vassar.

Our next guest-poster, Cynic, wears the mask, presumably, to cover the scarred flesh. His exact identity has yet to be determined, though the Golden Horde has narrowed the possibilities down to two--Barack Obama and Jim Fallows. Those are the only possibilities. (For the record, I think Obama is on vacation this week. Just sayin...)  Cynic routinely writes comments that are better than my posts. I am greatly looking forward to following his contributions this week.

Last, Brendan Koerner is one of the best magazine journalists working today, a contributing editor at Wired, and the author of Now The Hell Will Start. His latest piece is about AA and has been making the rounds. All of that is great, but what really matters is that Brendan is one my best friends, and is as lucid discussing the Indianapolis Colts as he discussing the merits of Conan as he is discussing his favorite beer. Awesome writer. Better friend. Even better overall person.

As for me, I am off spelunking. I'll still be posting, just a lot less. Each week, for the next six, I'll introduce a new group. My expectation is that this batch is going to set the bar pretty high. You guys are in for a treat. Strap in and grab ahold.

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Ta-Nehisi Coates is a national correspondent at The Atlantic, where he writes about culture, politics, and social issues. He is the author of the memoir The Beautiful Struggle. More

Born in 1975, the product of two beautiful parents. Raised in West Baltimore -- not quite The Wire, but sometimes ill all the same. Studied at the Mecca for some years in the mid-'90s. Emerged with a purpose, if not a degree. Slowly migrated up the East Coast with a baby and my beloved, until I reached the shores of Harlem. Wrote some stuff along the way.

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