Potpourri II: Electric Boogaloo

I’m heading into the last half-week of my summer teaching schedule — I’ve been teaching two classes this month, to a total of ten kids. One of those happens to be the Spawn, who is getting her Freshman Comp 1 out of the way before starting her senior year at Mondoville High. It has been an absolute joy teaching her (and not just because she has brought doughnuts and muffins to class on a couple of occasions, and not just because I love her.) She’s a very good writer as it turns out, with a natural voice and a charming style. But I’m also tickled that she’s getting to see me do what I do from the perspective of a student (as opposed to the perspective of a kid dragged to work when the public schools were closed.) It’s a real pleasure for me to let her see her old man doing something I do pretty well. And it seems to be working for her, too — she wants to take the second half of the sequence in the Spring term.


As for my own writing? Well, it clearly hasn’t been here (Sorry about that.) I’ve been doing a bit of work on my fiction, getting back to the novel after about a year in which I was diverted to other avenues. However, after that time away I find I need to revamp what I’ve written up to this point. Unfortunate, because it slows me down; fortunate, because the changes may make for a better (or more finishable) book. O felix culpa! Meanwhile, a really cool opportunity has opened to me in the last few days, so I’ve been working on that too. More on that later, I hope.


Yesterday, the Spawn asked me if I thought Republicans or conservatism would ever become cool — the result, no doubt, of seeing the constant pummeling both take in social media and the larger popular culture. I told her that it’s hard to be cool when you’re running against free ice cream, and I told her about the theory of the Silent Majority, and that people will often come to what I see as conservative truths as they get older. But as I’ve thought about our conversation a little more, I think I should have added a bit.

Conservatism isn’t about being cool. Cool changes — it’s a function of the Now. That’s why I’ll occasionally use an expression like “That’s just how I roll” during a lecture and immediately tell the class that the expression is officially dead, having been used by their middle-aged English prof. Conservatism is about learning from the past and seeing the ideas that have worked and failed. FLG often talks about “time horizons”, in the context of liberals relying on immediate data and short-term benefit and conservatives being more inclined to look at long-term consequences, both good and bad. But those time horizons work in both directions, both ahead and behind. I’ve noticed that in some of my discussions with the Mad Dog, he’ll express a disinterest in the history of the Left and its actions (presumably because he doesn’t want to belabor me with accounts of its many successes.) What’s important to him is Right Now. Of course, the spectacular incompetence of the Current Occupant’s regime also is problematic, but hey! He’s cool!

Screw cool.


And finally, a bit of music. Here’s a quickie from 1967-68, from New York’s the Rites. I particularly like the shifting time signatures in the chorus and the backwards guitar lead break. Here are the Rites, with “Things.”

I hope your day is going well.


About profmondo

Dad, husband, mostly free individual, medievalist, writer, and drummer. "Gladly wolde he lerne and gladly teche."
This entry was posted in Culture, Education, Family, Music, Pixel-stained Wretchery, Politics. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Potpourri II: Electric Boogaloo

  1. I see an opening. Spawn, come over to the cool side!

  2. profmondo says:

    Yes! Be unique and rebellious, just like Pelosi, Reid, and Eric Holder! Face it — you’re the Establishment, old man. She’s bright enough to see that.

  3. dave.s. says:

    Edward Klein is on the case. Clearly, she can’t handle her liquor. Not smart to say the below, even among people you think are your friends.

    “Hillary Clinton called President Obama “incompetent and feckless” and charged that he had “no hand on the tiller half the time” during a boozy reunion with college pals, a new book claims.

    The scathing attacks came as the wine was flowing at a May 2013 dinner at Le Jardin Du Roi, a cozy French bistro near the Clinton family home in Westchester, according to “Blood Feud,” by best-selling author Edward Klein.

    The former first lady, months removed from being Obama’s secretary of state, unleashed the verbal assault between sips of vino, sources told the author.

    “When her friends asked Hillary to tell them what she thought — really thought — about the president she had served for four draining years, she lit into Obama with a passion that surprised them all,” Klein wrote.

    Clinton ranted, “The thing with Obama is that he can’t be bothered, and there is no hand on the tiller half the time. That’s the story of the Obama presidency. No hand on the f–king tiller,” according to the book. . . .

    “Obama has turned into a joke,” she went on, according to Klein.

    Clinton even cited some of the same Obama administration scandals that so upset conservatives, though naturally she omitted Benghazi:

    “The IRS targeting the Tea Party, the Justice Department’s seizure of AP phone records and [Fox reporter] James Rosen’s e-mails — all these scandals. Obama’s allowed his hatred for his enemies to screw him the way Nixon did,” she raged, the book says, adding that she called the president “incompetent and feckless.””

  4. profmondo says:

    Hmm… politicians being venal and backbiting? Who knew? Seriously, thanks for passing this along.

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