There’s a technical issue with the website, so while Mike the wizard figures it out, I’ve cut back on posting to use the time otherwise. Some trips to plan, the article I have to write, and articles I want to read.
I’m almost done with an issue of The New Yorker that I’d missed a few weeks back. Just finished reading a creepy piece about cryogenics, David Owen’s redolent memoir of childhood smells, Ken Auletta on Obama and the media, and a profile of Neil Gaiman (an author I’ve been hearing about from my son Will for as long as I can remember). There are still a few reviews including movies from Anthony Lane, a writer so good that I read him even if I don’t care about the movies he’s discussing.
This is why we need magazines. Or maybe not magazines, but somewhere to find the people who think and write and report and open our eyes and minds to subjects we’re already interested in or have no interest in but then become curious about. Pretty soon these articles, stories, reminiscences, and fragments might no longer show up on paper but on screens and phones and touch pads and netbooks and who cares? It is the writing that we need to preserve, to encourage, to pay for, not the medium that conveys it.
I hope that no matter how the words are transmitted, the words will be read. And that “publishers,” or whatever term comes to replace that one, remember that the importance, to mangle McLuhan, is the message, not the medium.