October 07, 2006

A Crack Young Aesthete

As is widely known throughout Al Gore’s World-Wide Web, we, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” don’t write Saturday “posts.” Each Sunday, of course, we contribute a luminous essay for the fancy-pants “weblog” Wizbang, which offers our readers a chance to take in our coruscating genius on the weekends.

Accordingly, Saturday is the one day off for our hopping Internet outfit. You may be wondering, then, why in the Good Lord’s name we’ve broken our typical Saturday silence.

Well, dear reader, the answer is simple. A few days ago, James G. Poulos, the self-proclaimed Postmodern Conservative, sent a literary “meme” our way. Like all God-fearing creatures, we, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” didn’t have the foggiest notion what a “meme” was. Yet, thanks to numerous telephone calls and hours of reconnaissance work, we concluded that a “meme” is merely an Internet questionnaire of sorts.

As such, dear reader, we figured that we’d do the Po-Mo-Co a favor and answer the “meme” he tossed in our humble direction. And what better day to do this than Saturday? Other than any other day, we couldn’t think of a response either.

Rather than force the entire staff to fill in its responses, we decided to dish the “meme” off to one poor sap. So here it is: The answers to the e-questionnaire that one of our senior editors—let’s just call him “Chip”—proffered for this, his first excursion in “meme-land.”


1. One book that changed your life

George Orwell’s 1984. A lame answer, perhaps, but it’s true. If you ask me, this work isn’t a futuristic dystopia so much as a full-throttle attack on Communist totalitarianism. And it’s life-changingly brilliant.

2. One book you have read more than once

Roger Kimball’s Tenured Radicals: How Politics Has Corrupted Our Education. As sad as his subject may be, Kimball presents such a savagely humorous attack on far-left academics that I couldn’t stop laughing. The denunciations of the odious Houston Baker are worth a second read on their own.

3. One book you would want on a desert island

Fifty Handy Ways to Get Off a Desert Island (forthcoming).

4. One book that made you cry

Wow, that’s a tough one. Frankly, manly as I am, I don’t cry easily. Except for at the end of Keith Olbermann’s shows—that program’s so vicious it positively forces you to blubber. But maybe Peter Handke’s A Sorrow Beyond Dreams made me tear up a bit; Handke’s a real master.

5. One book that made you laugh

Evelyn Waugh’s Scoop. Sure, it may not be as politically relevant as Waugh’s Black Mischief but it’s as funny as heck.

6. One book you wish had been written

Well, if I ever find myself on a deserted island, I’m pretty sure I’d wish that Fifty Handy Ways to Get Off a Desert Island made it to the shelf.

7. One book you wish had never been written

Adolf Hitler’s Mein Kampf. We could do without that one, couldn’t we?

8. One book you are currently reading

The Code of the Woosters by P.G. Wodehouse. Classic Plum.

9. One book you have been meaning to read

George Santayan’s The Last Puritan. Perhaps, after reading it, I’ll be condemned to repeat it?

Posted at October 7, 2006 12:01 AM | TrackBack