destruction

We are a generation raised on zombie movies. Of the 5,000 ads each one of us saw today, explosions punctuated more than a few.

So how can you blame us when we get a taste for destruction?

We live the revenge-torture films we’ve been spoon fed. I remember the first time I saw a cop break someone’s arm. Let me set the scene: A cloud of pepper spray was slowly settling on us as we ran. From a hill overlooking the street that 80 of us had been marching down moments ago, our coughing and wheezing fused the strange mixture of fear and exhilaration into a single feeling. Suddenly, we saw four cops pounce on one of the stragglers. Tackled, she fell hard. Her howls became part of a single emotion. Like a fine wine, or better yet, expensive perfume, my memories of protest have a distinctive smell composed of many complex notes. And I protest like any good connoisseur, avoiding boring or bland actions, while seeking out every chance to experience a slice of the sublime. Continue reading “destruction”

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Introduction (to “The Best American Noir of the Century”)

We created it, but they love it more in France than they do here. Noir is the most scrutinized offshoot of the hard-boiled school of fiction. It’s the long drop off the short pier, and the wrong man and the wrong woman in perfect misalliance. It’s the nightmare of flawed souls with big dreams and the prices how and why of the all-time sure thing that goes bad. noir is opportunity as fatality, social justice as sanctified shuck, and sexual love as a one-way ticket to hell. Noir indicts the other subgenres of the hard-boiled school as sissified, and canonized the inherent human urge toward self-destruction.

Continue reading “Introduction (to “The Best American Noir of the Century”)”