“Here’s the danger: That creates weak otakus. Etewaf doesn’t produce a new generation of artists—just an army of sated consumers. Why create anything new when there’s a mountain of freshly excavated pop culture to recut, repurpose, and manipulate on your iMovie? The Shining can be remade into a comedy trailer. Both movie versions of the Joker can be sent to battle each another. The Dude is in The Matrix.”
VH1 was the first instance of being told that something in the near-past of pop culture was cool, or at least delightfully campy, and presented these relics in such a way that it was easy to quote and talk about with your friends, instead of actually discussing why Back to the Future was actually an important film. Everything became a giant in-joke that everyone was supposed to get.
"What? How do people even set up this comparison? There is NO competition. Radiolab WIPES THE FLOOR with TAL." - Pete Forester
"No, no, no! Radiolab is great. & fantastic. & wonderful. But This American Life is more great. & more fantastic. & more wonderful. :)" - Marke Johnson
Have you ever been more wrong in all of your life?
I was wrong this one time when I thought I had made a mistake, but then it turned out that I hadn’t.
“The real prize is on the second disc, which, aside from containing a number of stills of concept art and production photos, has an hour-long documentary on dreams assembled by hitRECord, the production project headed by one of the film’s stars, Joseph Gordon-Levitt. This fascinating documentary weaves you through wonderful dreamlike images — many starring Gordon-Levitt himself — overlayed with talking head interviews with a number of dream experts and psychologists, trying to unravel the nature of dreams while simultaneously applying it to its use in Inception. One of the best documentary special features I’ve seen recently, this could easily be watched and discussed with friends independent of the film itself — a rare thing for a DVD special feature.”—Inception Blu-Ray Review
2 “Meaningless! Meaningless!” says the Teacher. “Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless.”
3 What do people gain from all their labors at which they toil under the sun? 4 Generations come and generations go, but the earth remains forever. 5 The sun rises and the sun sets, and hurries back to where it rises. 6 The wind blows to the south and turns to the north; round and round it goes, ever returning on its course. 7 All streams flow into the sea, yet the sea is never full. To the place the streams come from, there they return again. 8 All things are wearisome, more than one can say. The eye never has enough of seeing, nor the ear its fill of hearing. 9 What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun. 10 Is there anything of which one can say, “Look! This is something new”? It was here already, long ago; it was here before our time. 11 No one remembers the former generations, and even those yet to come will not be remembered by those who follow them.
“One of the things that makes Wittgenstein a real artist to me is that he realized that no conclusion could be more horrible than solipsism. And so he trashed everything he’d been lauded for in the Tractatus and wrote the Investigations, which is the single most comprehensive and beautiful argument against solipsism that’s ever been made. Wittgenstein argues that for language even to be possible, it must always be a function of relationships between persons (that’s why he spends so much time arguing against the possibility of a “private language”). So he makes language dependent on human community, but unfortunately we’re still stuck with the idea that there is this world of referents out there that we can never really join or know because we’re stuck in here, in language, even if we’re at least all in here together.”—David Foster Wallace on Wittgenstein
“The basis for Wallace’s thought that he may be “nothing but a linguistic construct” stems from one idea about the workings of language that both Derrida and Wittgenstein agree on: the importance of context in creating meaning because of a lack of a definite “center.” For Derrida, the center “orient[s] and organize[s] the coherence of the system” (“Structure” 278-8). Once the “structurality of structure had to begin to be thought,” (e.g. fiction’s turn towards metafiction) this center was removed and an “absence of transcendental signified” emerged. Removing this center removed a stable context to refer back to; nothing was left except language. When Wallace worries that he is “nothing but a linguistic construct,” he is concerned that Derrida is right, that he is not a “construct of God” or a “construct of man” but indeed a construct of the only medium left that creates meaning—a “construct of language.”—Play Nice: Conning the Text in David Foster Wallace’s The Broom of the System