Dum Pendebat Filius

A sniff in the kortevar, that what you cry for, yeled? A prert up the cull, a prang on the dumpendebat?

Malaise

malaise (n.): a vague sense of mental or moral ill-being

A “malaise” seems to have infected the op-ed page of the New York Times, as the editors continue to punish us for having complained about Maureen Dowd. It looks, alarmingly, like the execrable Sarah Vowell is going to continue filling in for the execrable Maureen. Today we got treated to another semi-coherent and painfully vapid glorified blog post. Readers, what is this silly crap doing in the NYT?

Then I realized I was picturing George W. Bush giving this presidential bummer speech while wearing a cardigan sweater. Which is when it hit me. I was fantasizing about Jimmy Carter. I can stop whiling away the hours writing forlorn presidential speeches in my head and look up Carter’s forlorn presidential speeches instead.

This bizarre piece, the gravamen of which seems to be that Vowell liked it when President Carter “acknowledged” “our chaos,” would be perfectly appropriate on her blog. It’s not appropriate in the goddamn New York Times.

Amusingly, the about-the-author text following the piece provides us with a link to a Times review of a book Vowell managed somehow to get published:

Maureen Dowd is on book leave.

Sarah Vowell, a contributor to public radio’s “This American Life,” is the author, most recently, of “Assassination Vacation.”

The New York Times, it turns out, didn’t even like her book much:

On the page her idiosyncrasies can be less attractive. She is often too eager to show off how quirkily her mind works, and her prose tends to overdo the ironic curlicues…

In the McKinley section she addresses the growth of American imperialism and draws farfetched parallels with Iraq. But her lighthearted tone is often at odds with the material, and by confining herself to these three assassinations she avoids addressing most of the emotionally wrenching effects of national violence. A stop in Dallas, I’m guessing, would have spoiled the mood of the book. Some people just shouldn’t play with guns.

Will the Times make it stop, please?

I’m sorry, editors! Please bring back the execrable Maureen Dowd real soon!

Filed under: Media by dumpendebat at 2005/07/13 - 16:35

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