Monthly Archives: June 2006

Scattered Thoughts: War on Terror Edition

Listening to the BBC World Service on radio this morning, there was some kind of security consultant talking about bin Laden and Zarqawi. She was offering incredibly precise, strong readings of the current state of Islamist insurgents around the world, … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 5 Comments

Chainsaw Music

When I was a surly teenager, one of my certainties was that wherever I lived as an adult, it wasn’t going to be a suburb. The city or the country, but not a suburb. I think that’s a common affectation … Continue reading

Posted in Domestic Life | 10 Comments


One of the interesting things about the most successful super-hero films to date is the relative extent to which they discard the convention of the secret identity while trying still to play with the fetishistic character of masks and costumes. … Continue reading

Posted in Popular Culture | 14 Comments

Middlebrow Video Game Criticism

Unfogged links to a Chuck Klosterman essay in which he asks why there isn’t more mainstream video game criticism in various newspapers and magazines. I’ve thought about this issue myself. There’s a huge difference between what a magazine like Entertainment … Continue reading

Posted in Games and Gaming, Popular Culture | 9 Comments

Rentiers of Sovereignty

I’ve had to deal with a situation this week that involves some complicated transactions over the title to a used car, on behalf of someone else. The mechanisms of title transfer are a hassle, but I’m also largely glad that … Continue reading

Posted in Africa, Politics | 13 Comments

Live the Future You Want

I’m not especially fair-minded by nature. I have to struggle against temper, a quick tongue, an instinct to mock. Some of the long-windedness here is my way of guarding against those inclinations, getting myself to inhabit the obligations I’ve set … Continue reading

Posted in Academia, Uncategorized | 8 Comments