On death, immortality and slipping into the future:
A few days later, Patient No. 93 was hoisted up on a forklift head first, like a hibernating bat, beside invisible cats, inside a seven-thousand-square-foot building in an industrial park in the heart of America, where some of the sorriest ideas of a godforsaken and alienated modern culture endure.
Jill Lepore, “The Iceman,” New Yorker, Jan. 25, on Robert Ettinger, founder of the cryonics movement.
Why, within the clerk’s small store alone, there were notepads and gauze pads and corn pads and sanitary pads and heating pads and cleansing pads. He also knew, making his living in a slightly medical field, that periods happen, and sanitary pads exist, and that neither of these facts is worth getting all giggly and red-faced about.
Kate Dailey, “The iPad: Love It or Hate It, but Leave Periods Out of It,” Newsweek, Jan. 27
These schools of thought, if that is the right word, are politically correct and value vacuous, citing social purpose as the purpose and yet violating the basic principle of reporting, which is that we should genuinely have the objective of being objective. Many of these individuals would be far better servants of society if they joined an NGO or charity in which they could more coherently expiate their bourgeois guilt.
Robert Thomson, (editor-in-chief of Dow Jones and managing editor of The Wall Street Journal), “End of the World As We Know It,” The Australian, Jan. 23, taking jabs at J schools, googles, aggregators and bailouts.
The more that TV pundits reduce serious debates to silly arguments, big issues into sound bites, our citizens turn away. No wonder there’s so much cynicism out there.
Barack Obama, “State of the Union,” Jan. 27
I hope to hell that when I do die somebody has the sense to just dump me in the river or something. Anything except
sticking me in a goddam cemetary. 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.
J.D. Salinger, “Catcher in the Rye,” 1951