Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Paris Review: Touchstone of the Past

Who's paranoid? Certainly not the ULA. We operate in the open. We aren't afraid of anything.

Everyone else in the lit-biz skulks around timidly afraid to say anything contrary to the powers-that-be, as if they lived in Communist China waiting for tanks to crush Tianamen Square expressions of liberty. What is everyone afraid of? Why the secretiveness and anonymity?

Face it-- literary culture is a closed society. Why has no one said a word about the shocking and argumentative Richard Cummings expose that ran as a two-part Monday Report on the ULA site? From demi-puppet lit-bloggers we've heard not a peep. Normally they engage in intense discussions of every litter box movement of the Paris Review's cat Fluffy. About important matters they say nothing. Surely there's enough in the Cummings piece to debate, investigate, agree or disagree with. As it stands, it's devastating. Yet about its many revelations the lit-world has no curiosity.

Whatever else, let's have no more references in the New Yorker and N.Y. Times to Paris Review as some kind of touchstone of current literary culture.

(Typically, the new Believer is five steps behind the ULA and misses the basket, with a puff piece on Paris Review written by a Paris Review editor. We outmaneuver the Believer so easily, one might think we have a spy in their camp. They're so slow and predictable, we don't need one.)


King Wenclas said...

What our opponents ignore is that the ULA presents essays, like the Cummings essay, which have great import. Isn't the question of possible CIA involvement in American letters tremendously important? Why no comments about the skeptics about this?
We're not JUST noisemakers, you see, but have been from the beginning addressing issues no one else will touch.

Tao Lin said...

um, just about every writer in america talks shit about the new yorker about once per week

don't think you're so badass

the MP said...

Maybe because the CIA just are? Eh?
Here's something a few days old that was read among other pieces at a CARNIVOLUTION (the Hydrogen Jukebox Band, Sideshow, puppetry, belly dancers and poets performing)Art Party at the Tiberino Museum courtyard in West Philly last Friday the 10th. There were throughout the evening over two hundred people of all ages in attendance eating it up and drinking it in. Jeff's desciption of the pinball players dropping the flipper buttons in deference to Big Jack reading made the connection. Yes its not a question of the people being smarter than their authors but being able to tell the difference between the stink of a rotten fish and the piquancy of a freshly caught fish. This sonnet below got a really good response from the crowd. Wonder why? :

If you want to become something
then get over it and become a cop.
Everybody wants to be the police
and these days everybody who is
somebody is, furthering their e-
judication to a third degree as in Masonry
they become law enforcement people
even sexual orientation’s not an issue
a wallet could be a gun and an old lady
with the gout a terrorist- I need a tissue-
behind the spanking polyester blend
uniform has its advantages, edge.
So overcome your fears, become the threat
and well heeled, especially if you like, dogs.


Oh yes and some of KK's kick butt fliers Jeff mentioned for the July 16th event infiltrated the aforementioned Bacchanal!