Earlier today, Jess had a few choice words about Anthony Bourdain’s cliché-ridden Spin back page this month. But that’s nothing compared to these nearly 1,500 words of incoherent gibberish from the new biannual arts journal Paper Monument (a companion publication to the lit mag n+1) by one J.D. Daniels, who jumps right in by telling us, “Rock and roll is a music of mechanized sexuality. That’s why ninety percent of it sounds like clocks fucking.” Does it, now?
That, of course, is just the beginning. Try this bit:
One of my freshman English students, sent to find an example of debased language from the world of the lie, selected an ad for a brassiere promising Sexy fun, 24/7. This is a lot of pressure to put on your urogenital hydraulics. What, no refractory period? No menstruation? No bean soup, no coffee, no long phone calls to old friends, no train trips to the city?
It’s like a parody of bad lit-mag writing–airy, precious, overly studied, self-congratulatory. (I feel sorry for anyone learning about writing from this guy.) And that Daniels is one of those people who hates himself for loving rock (that’s the essay’s topic, it would seem) just makes him both more pompous and more cutesy. And of course, in the great tradition of people who write rock criticism making sure you know that they’re not, you know, rock critics or anything, we get this:
Reading about music is boring, and reading about extremely boring music is extremely boring. Writing about it is no thrill ride, either.
Here’s an idea, then: don’t!
Clocking Out [n+1]