What It Is: 1/26/09

What I’m reading: The Alcoholic, a boring comic book by Jonathan Ames and Dean Haspiel, and The Hot Rock, by the late, lamented Donald Westlake. Otherwise, same as last week: Montaigne and Clive James.

What I’m listening to: Bebel Gilberto records

What I’m watching: The last episodes of Arrested Development.

What I’m drinking: Plymouth & Q Tonic

What Rufus is up to: Playing with his new squeaky toy, a big plush pheasant. It’s holding up remarkably well to his chomping, but he’s gotten crazy-possessive about it.

Where I’m going: To Philadelphia next Saturday to visit a pal.

What I’m happy about: Since dropping Instapundit, Vodkapundit and Andrew Sullivan from my rotation, I’m able to read my daily RSS feeds much more quickly!

What I’m sad about: That the last season of Arrested Development fell so flat.

What I’m pondering: How much weight Portia de Rossi dropped from the beginning of the series to the end. We might have to go back and check out the first few episodes just to see.

Montaigne update

Hmm. Maybe I should have pushed my Montaigne-as-blogger idea, floated a few weeks ago when I wrote up Of presumption in my Monday Morning Montaigne series. Here’s a piece from Andrew Sullivan’s article “Why I Blog” in the new ish of The Atlantic:

But perhaps the quintessential blogger avant la lettre was Montaigne. His essays were published in three major editions, each one longer and more complex than the previous. A passionate skeptic, Montaigne amended, added to, and amplified the essays for each edition, making them three-dimensional through time. In the best modern translations, each essay is annotated, sentence by sentence, paragraph by paragraph, by small letters (A, B, and C) for each major edition, helping the reader see how each rewrite added to or subverted, emphasized or ironized, the version before. Montaigne was living his skepticism, daring to show how a writer evolves, changes his mind, learns new things, shifts perspectives, grows older — and that this, far from being something that needs to be hidden behind a veneer of unchanging authority, can become a virtue, a new way of looking at the pretensions of authorship and text and truth. Montaigne, for good measure, also peppered his essays with myriads of what bloggers would call external links. His own thoughts are strewn with and complicated by the aphorisms and anecdotes of others. Scholars of the sources note that many of these “money quotes” were deliberately taken out of context, adding layers of irony to writing that was already saturated in empirical doubt.

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