Monthly Archives: April 2011

Outlined against a yellow-white June sky, the Three Consulting Editors rode again. In dramatic lore they are glibness, naivete, and ironic lowbrowism. Their real names are: Gladwell, Eggers, and Klosterman…


Numb / Clams Casino / Clams Casino (instrumental mixtape)

Definitely worth the download. Also, best DJ name ev-ah.

This entire album, Live at the Fillmore East 1970, is incredible.

Kings should have beards.

I admit it: I’m kind of obsessed with the coverage — the coverage, mind you — of the Royal Wedding (TM). At this point, I’ve been making bad jokes about how I’m going to wake up at 4 a.m. to watch the ceremony for so long that I may have to actually do it. Part of this is genetic. My mom was a bit of a Diana maniac for a time — we have about 18 Royal Family coffee table books in the basement — and I’m pretty sure that my sister is named after the erstwhile Princess of Wales, even though mom won’t admit it.

Funny Hats! A Royal Necessity.

Of course, I’m a staunch small-r republican on this one, and think monarchies are awful institutions (even argued about this on the internet with putative monarchist Matt Yglesias), so it’s sort of disgusting that these terrible people and their wealth can command so much public attention when, you know, the fate of the global political system seems to hang daily in the balance. The fact that I can bet money on what color bikini Kate Middleton is photographed wearing during her honeymoon, however, however, is so totally absurd that I’m left in a sort of awed stupor. Also, definitely betting Prince Charles will cry before the Queen does (which is never).

Anyway, two good articles on this topic:

1) “Welcome to the Firm.

The people had handheld flags, but these had been given away – as one side proclaimed – by Crown Paints. These loyal subjects saw the couple arrive, wave momentarily, then disappear into the dry. The sensible ones then left. “Was it worth it?” I asked a group of escaping young mums. “Nooooo,” they shouted back in unison.

…  And those graced by The Presence came away like medieval peasants brushed by the royal fingers to cure the scrofula. “He shook my hand! He shook my hand!” “Oooh, loovly!” Then the royal party vanished. It could be half a lifetime before they get to Blackburn again… “We are in the happiness business,” as Lord Charteris, a former private secretary to the Queen, once put it.

2) “Last in the line of succession, Ms. Vogel is glad she isn’t Queen:
Descendant of Sophia of Hanover, She Would Rule Britain if 4,972 Die”

Ms. Vogel and her mother have retained a certain fondness for British royalty. They admire the U.K.’s cultural heritage and its eccentricities, like bowler hats and afternoon tea. Ilse calls Elizabeth II “a great woman and a great queen.” As for Prince Charles, Ilse has confidence, having read his treatise on organic farming.

Still,neither would want to be queen. “Too stressful,” Ms. Vogel says.

While I guess congrats are due to the young couple, I can’t help but agree with Hitchens’ advice to Kate: Run!

Great German-Americans in History: Carl Shurz

In 1848, student revolutionary Carl Shurz, age 19, broke his politically-jailed professor out of Berlin’s Spandau prison with a scheme that relied on bribes and disguises. That level of awesomeness can’t be contained by continental Europe, and so Shurz would emigrate to the United States, where he became a confidant of Abraham Lincoln’s and a key campaign aide, attracting German-American voters to the Republican party. When the Civil War broke out, he went to the White House to ask for a military commission. We turn to the notes of Lincoln’s secretary, John Hay:

April 26: Carl Schurz was here today. He spoke with wild enthusiasm of his desire to mingle in the war. He has great confidence in his military prowess, and his capability of arousing the enthusiasm of the young. He contemplates the career of a great guerilla chief with ardent longing.

April 27: … Through the luxuriant grounds the gaily dressed crowd idly strolled, soldiers loafed in the promenade, the martial music filled the sweet air with vague suggestions of heroism, and Carl Schurz and the President talked war.

April 28: Carl Schurz … will make a wonderful land pirate, bold, quick brilliant and reckless. He will be hard to control and difficult to direct. Still, we shall see. He is a wonderful man.

Mingle in the war! Land pirate!

This is what most of my days feel like.                                                                            Via.