If journals, sketchbooks, letters, and scribbled-on napkins are venerated and kept for insights into great minds, there seems to be a case that tweets should be held onto, too. Then again, publicly accessible 140-character bursts can be so frivolous—and based so much on maintaining appearances—that they might seem like they don’t offer anything worth preserving.
So, here’s what I dreamt: that, after a long journey, I came to a faraway place where real writers gathered in an Elysian kingdom, to talk about how to make words last, about lyric and intention and the condition of our souls. You know, all that writerly rigamarole. I dreamt that I was somewhere that wasn’t here (here being Harwich in winter, under a blinter of stars), where there was a river whose main tributary rushed with these concerns, and nourished life with this new energy. But, in reality, here I was, icebound at the trickling headwaters, blamming out deadline copy.
So: how to get there.
If the Industrial Revolution introduced the assembly-line production concept in factories, the 1950s and 1960s saw companies like General Motors introduce robotics on shop floors. These developments, however, will pale in comparison to what is in store for the human workforce a few decades from now, given the acceleration in capabilities of software automation and artificial intelligence (AI) driven predictive algorithms.
Writer and former chef John Birdsall firmly believes there is a queer aesthetic in modern food culture, rooted in the work of three great American food writers: James Beard, the longtime New York Times food critic Craig Claiborne, and expat Richard Olney, whose cookbooks helped introduce Americans to the joys of French cuisine. The sensibilities of this trifecta of closeted gay men had far-reaching influence, changing the way Americans cooked and ate.