The Daily

Posts Tagged ‘hubris’

Existence Precedes Essence

January 7, 2016 | by

Uh ...

I lost an idea last night. It was late, and I was tired, and I had some kind of insight that seemed interesting—but, with hubris worthy of a Greek tragedy, I told myself I’d remember in the morning. Of course, I didn’t. All I remembered was the lightbulb moment, which, with each passing hour, became more dazzling, more revelatory, more important in my memory. Within a few hours of my forgetting it, this had become the best idea I’d ever had. Read More »

TPR vs. Vanity Fair: Literary Softball Bullshit

June 30, 2011 | by

Team    |1|2|3|4|5|6|7|8  Total

VF      |0|1|0|0|0|1|1|1   4
TPR     |2|1|0|0|0|0|0|0   3

There’s no easy way to say this, so I’ll just come out with it: yesterday we lost to Vanity Fair in softball. I know, I know—we’re embarrassed, we’re heartbroken, and to say that we were demoralized after the game is an understatement. (Oh, how we wept!) If life were a sports movie, this would be the game right before our turnaround, the low point that brings us back together, spurring us on to greatness. Our grizzled coach would make a passionate speech, and our distracted star player would wake up and dedicate himself to the team. Cut to the montage where we hit home runs and laugh at our practical jokes, topped off by a spinning newspaper with a headline like: “TPR ONLY ONE GAME OUT OF FIRST!” This isn’t a movie though, and thinking about those Vanity Fair hooligans pouring champagne all over each other after the game kept me awake last night, and probably will for weeks.

It started off well enough: after two innings we were up three to one, and it seemed like the rest of the game would be a walk in the park or a day at the beach or a peach on a beach or something like that. I started thinking about what I would write, certain I would preface it with “Not to be mean, but Vanity Fair really isn’t good at softball.” What hubris. From the third inning on, our bats were silent, our mitts were loose, and before you could say “Siddhartha Finch” we were in extra innings. After holding us at no runs in the top half of the eighth, they scored the winning run on a sharp single into right field. C’est la vie.

In the end, we let our—dare I say vanity?—get the best of us. We also let their third baseman—a big bald guy wearing jorts (jean shorts) and drinking a Coors Light—get the best of us when he told us to quit with our “literary softball bullshit.” He reminded me of my seventh grade gym teacher. He might actually have been my seventh grade gym teacher.

In a game like this there aren’t many highlights, but it would seem like adding salt to the wound if I failed to mention a spectacular catch by our right fielder Karen “The Franchise” Maine and the equally spectacular pitching performance by Devin “Meal Ticket” McIntyre. Meal Ticket, we should have pulled you an inning earlier; this loss isn’t on you, so don’t beat yourself up. You two surely can hold your heads high; the rest of us can remind ourselves that even though we lost, our mothers still love us.


Good-Bye to All That: Deitchland

September 24, 2010 | by

When Jeffrey Deitch opened his gallery in Soho in 1995, his program had promise. He exhibited the great Japanese artist of sound and light Mariko Mori, Chen Zhen’s installation of street latrines from Beijing (a tribute by the late artist to the old ladies tasked to clean them), and the African-American performance artist Jocelyn Taylor, who took over the windows of a whole Soho block to create an ironic red-light district—the highpoint in a career that would dissipate thereafter. Read More »