Seattle, Washington, United States
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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Leaps and Bounds

I don't have very much time to write today, but I thought I would leave you all with an interesting thought. I am a subscriber to The Boston Review, one of America's best known literary, political, and cultural journals. It comes every two months in a trusty paper format that harkens back to a time before People magazine and iPads. The Boston Review looks like a literary journal should look: you can actually tell it's made out of paper. The gods of Victorian Newsprint smile upon it with pride.

Or, at least, they did.

The Boston Review came this month no larger than an issue of Time (another great magazine, but with a completely different aim). It had a shiny cover and was bound like a perfect magazine. The promising rustle of paper was gone, and it was replaced by a silent, effortless leap into the future. Or, actually, into the now.

But that was part of BR's charm. It was never a part of the now! It was a part of the then! And look at the number of things that are becoming part of the then. Books, for instance, are caving to flashy words on screens (although, I must admit that I am in love with my Kindle). Apple decided the iPad could take the place of newspapers. We don't walk stairs, we use elevators. We don't take the time to make our coffee at the pot. Instead, we brew VIA at our desks or one-cup-thirty-second-single-brew-cups of coffee.

It's good. It's fast. But is it really strong? In a time when we can't even wait for our coffee (I'm just as guilty as you are) no wonder BR looks like People.

I guess the Victorian Newsprint gods have finally been laid to rest. And I think that's just sad enough to blog about.

May your coffee be strong, your passions electric, and your laughter easy.

For more about The Boston Review (which is still a great magazine for all things American and academic) visit their website:


  1. I know I'm your mom and you probably don't want me commenting too much, but I just had to today. You are a brilliant writer and I have no doubt it will be your life's profession. I look forward to Thursday every week.

  2. Mom,

    Comment all you want. I love reading them. =]