All the news that’s fit to stink

“My breakfast over, I paid a visit to Professor Jameson and proposed to him to give an account of the habits of the Turkey Buzzard instead of the Wild Turkey. He appeared anxious to have either.”
-John James Audubon in his London journal (mid 1820s)

I finished the last book I carried with me on this trip to the Midwest and with nothing else to occupy my mind I scatter-shot the internet. (Nothing in the way I swim or compute could ever be mistaken for “surfing.”) Hereâ’s what I found in 30 minutes, give or take.

mg913Who would have thought? Google “smelly boys” and in the first dozen entries you will find adverts for scents and refrigerator magnets, videos of boys smelling their socks, and an article about the protest over smelly boy products such as tees and magnets, etc., as demeaning to boys. “Harmless fun or a fashion faux pas?”

Here’s a site new to me, The Art & Crime Gazette, which explores the intersection between art and crime, featuring a quotation from the 2003 book, Crimes of Art + Terror, by Frank Lentricchia and Jody McAuliffe, professors at Duke University: “There is a small dark place in Western Civilization where great art stands side-by-side with terrorists and petty felons.” The book, reviewed here last year, argues at its most extreme that the impulse to create art and the impulse to commit violence “lie perilously close to each other.” L + M compare “literary explosives” and “actual explosives,” equate “imaginative acts” to “bloody deeds.” The Gazette is more balanced, and is very interesting. In the blog section they note a Barry Johnson Art Scatter post about bronze statues stolen and sold as scrap metal. Check out the Gazette and see what you think.

Conservative and liberal are meaningless terms in American thought. That limp mind on the Right, Rush Limbaugh, apparently claims that President Obama is doing such a good job of destroying the country that: “If al-Qaeda wants to demolish the America we know and love, they better hurry, because Obama is beating them to it.” The America he loves has no substance. He has a thought and it must be Good. Confidence of opinion based on total absence of fact. It reminds me of Ted Hughes’ poems about Crow, especially “Crow’s Theology”:

Crow realized God loved him-
Otherwise, he would have dropped dead.
So that was proved.

Crow reclined, marvelling, on his heart-beat.
And he realized that God spoke Crow-
Just existing was His revelation.

But what Loved the stones and spoke stone?
They seemed to exist too.

And what spoke that strange silence
After his clamour of caws faded?

And what loved the shot-pellets
That dribbled from those strung-up mummifying crows?
What spoke the silence of lead?

Crow realized there were two Gods-
One of them much bigger than the other
Loving his enemies
And having all the weapons.