Why Are So Many Great Men Short?

Stephen Fry and the “QI” panel examine the aforementioned question.

Although this common assertion is largely spurious, it’s still somewhat interesting to learn that many of the so-called “great men” of historical note were so diminutive, relatively speaking. For example, I was quite surprised that Admiral Nelson was only 5’ 4” tall.

J.D. Salinger: Surprisingly Dead

It was kind of an astonishing shock to learn that the reclusive author was a fairly awesome 91 yrs old when he gently passed on the other day of heart failure. More than a little existentially ironic that…

“What I was really hanging around for, I was trying to feel some kind of a good-by. I mean I’ve left schools and places I didn’t even know I was leaving them. I hate that. I don’t care if it’s a sad good-by or a bad good-by, but when I leave a place I like to know I’m leaving it. If you don’t, you feel even worse.”

Salinger’s fictional protagonist imagined his death this way:

Boy, when you’re dead, they really fix you up. I hope to hell when I do die somebody has sense enough to just dump me in the river or something. Anything except sticking me in a goddam cemetery. People coming and putting a bunch of flowers on your stomach on Sunday, and all that crap. Who wants flowers when you’re dead? Nobody.

So will Salinger be unceremoniously dumped into a nearby river or something? Or will he be memorialized in “a goddam cemetatry” against his wishes?

Much Ado About Adam

Maybe it’s my post-modern sensibility, but I think it would have been far more interesting for the Met to have simply displayed Tullio Lombardo’s broken statue in its fractured state…

The elaborate restoration process seems entirely pointless. Why shouldn’t the damaged form of the iconic High Renaissance statue speak to us directly in its present, shattered context? As a work of art, to me, that would be far more relevantly poignant and significant.

Giuliani v. Obama

Why does anyone on planet Earth listen to the mendacious, self-serving bullshit trotted out by this superannuated douchebag? Moreover, who the hell cares about what Rudy Giuliani thinks about anything?

The Vagabond Scholar exposed Rudy’s predictable technique a while back:

Rudy Giuliani often uses weasel words (and dips into McCarthyist attacks), but he’s particularly fond of a specific weasel move, which follows this general pattern: “My opponent did not once say [a specific phrase of my own devising].” Giuliani follows this up by claiming his opponents have ducked some serious matter that they’ve actually discussed in some depth. Giuliani’s varied it a bit over the years, but I find this tactic particularly glaring and annoying. I also question how effective it is to anyone who’s not already in Giuliani’s camp (apparently, authoritarian crusaders).

Doesn’t the “mainstream media” have an operative bullshit meter… and shouldn’t it be frantically red-lining every time this horridly dishonest man opens his mouth?

Young Republican

And there I thought Bill O’Reilly just appealed to the demographic Keith Olbermann once described as “65 to dead.”