What is Zoom, really, but a Houellebecquian nightmare?

So a thought occurred to me, during a recent webcast call with some colleagues from work. The platform doesn’t matter; we’ll call it Zoom for the moment, though for the record that is actually the one platform I am not allowed to use at work. What happened was this: I was the only one onContinue reading “What is Zoom, really, but a Houellebecquian nightmare?”

So. The president just went into quarantine.

What a pretty pass we have come to, when I cannot summon up from the depths of my ostensibly Christian soul even a modicum of sympathy for a man who faces a 5-8 times higher rate ratio of hospitalization than someone in their 20s if he actually contracts this disease. What a failure on myContinue reading “So. The president just went into quarantine.”

What will be left, after the wreckage burns and all that remains is refuse and memories?

A couple years ago we held a get-together at our house for the the families at our sons’ day-care. We did it in part as payback for the quite lovely get-together that had just then recently been hosted by the parents of a graduating kindergartner of Chinese heritage and an Old Testament given name. ThisContinue reading “What will be left, after the wreckage burns and all that remains is refuse and memories?”

The subtle dance of face-mask as status marker

I had this realization the other day (actually today, if we’re being honest) that part of the issue with face masks is that it involves a symbolic — which is to say, real — admission of equality in the face of the pandemic, and of social others. What do I mean by that? I meanContinue reading “The subtle dance of face-mask as status marker”

Daddy? What did you do during the plague?

I drank. Rose mostly, but also vermouth. An aside here: one of the more amazing moments of my graduate school career involved an elaborate scheme whereby the gay student group “sponsored” a conference on bisexuality. This was a fig leaf so that the bisexuals — who in truth had very little connection to the universityContinue reading “Daddy? What did you do during the plague?”