Nothing To See Here
Sorry for the light posting - I'm crashing on a piece, and bleary-eyed from the World Series. While I recover, go read David Kirkpatrick on the religious right's semi-crack-up, if you haven't already; also Theodore Dalrymple's fine City Journal essay on the new atheism; any number of things in the new Claremont Review of Books; and Terry Teachout:
I suppose we all reach a moment in our lives when we lose interest in the new, and I suspect that moment comes sooner for technology than for art. For now I seem to be staying fairly open to new things--my experience as a blogger suggests as much--but I have yet to send my first text message, nor does my somewhat superannuated cellphone contain a digital camera. On the increasingly rare occasions when I feel the need to take a picture of something, I buy a disposable film camera, the postmodern equivalent of a Brownie, at the corner drugstore.
Today a friend walked into my office, all abuzz over some new online service or gizmo - let's call it "Z." He tried to describe to me what it does, failed, and said: "Oh, it's like a much slicker version of Y." I responded, "What's Y?" He said - "Oh, well, it's the newer, more popular version of X." I said: "What's X?" Which suggests that I'm well on my way to crossing the Teachout threshold.
And that reminds me - as a public service announcement, I should mention that while I have a Facebook account, I have never ever used it for anything (except once to look at someone else's Facebook page), and frankly I don't even know my own password. So if you've asked me to be your friend or otherwise acted friendly in the Facebook realm, I'm not ignoring you: I'm just ignoring, you know, the modern world.