As of Summer 2016, entering the third year of a Ph.D. program. Teaching politics and history to public university undergraduates who were systematically mis-educated in school, and who often possess literally no information about the subjects, but who (predictably) display a visceral knowledge of class, race and gender. Not to generalize. Some of my students know a lot, and I love them all.
Friends, family and comrades are important.
Was married once, for 10 years. Can imagine something like that again, for good.
Whenever possible, I prefer to spend full months and seasons in one village in Greece. At some point I would like to do that for years.
Perpetually about to pitch for the million. Life is about the paradox.
All the things that are useless, I've decided after checking my own "favorites" section. Oh, sure, I can philosophize, and I can keep a room full of kids entertained for an hour before they riot. But can I do CPR? Apply a tourniquet? Fix the leak? Change a tire in a sandstorm? Sew a damn hole closed? Hack a million out of a bank? Grow a tomato? Can I even fish for food? So much still to learn!
(A real answer would require a third-party survey, but I was told no outside help on this test.)
I wish I grew up in the Franny and Zooey house, minus the tragedies. My favorite children's books are about a girl named Alice. Shakespeare is god and so is Marge Piercy. Every five years I read C. Wright Mills, "The Power Elite" (1956) and find that he remains contemporary. I co-authored an academic book on forced labor in Germany during the Second World War.
As a kid I collected Marvels, played D&D and wargames, and read the SF classics. I probably prefer "Dune" to "War and Peace." I currently prefer "The Great Transformation" and history writing or political economy to fiction still doing realism in contemporary settings. But if you're Virginia Woolf, please feel free to call me any time.
For decades I was a total movie and album head. Then they both sort of went obsolete. Let's pick one of each at random: "Liquid Sky" and "Aladdin Sane." Wait, that doesn't seem random at all! Okay, one more of each, at random: "1900-Novecento" and "Songs of the City, Songs of the Sea." (Hm. I think I'm still cheating!)
Quite recently I enjoyed a Swedish thing called "Real Humans," sort of a Brazilian soap opera with robots. It spoke to my obsession (more hate-than-love) with transhumanism, as did the recent "Ex Machina".
Did I mention Kubrick? I always do. Let's conclude this game of Exquisite Corpse: "Invisible Man" is the Great American Novel. Or else "Watchmen." My involuntary aesthetic baseline is 1970s New York. Do you remember Playland? "Four hundred years of democracy... and cuckoo clocks!" "Don't blame me, I voted for Kodos." "Let's get sushi and not pay." Have I displayed enough cultural capital for you? Are you ready to rip my bodice? No?!
This should end with something about how smart is sexy, but the real answer is love. Because it often is. You learn more about people through empathy than data. (Perspectival reasoning, if you prefer to call it something less squishy.)
But let's answer anyway:
1. City racket. Why is it so addictive?!
3. Right now, either Violent Femmes or Schubert.
4. This infernal machine.
5. On the subway or when eating alone: a book.
6. You, given just the right kind of luck.
I like dreams. I mean the kind during sleep. Can't do without them.
Given Paris' choice, I always give the apple to Athena, but keep waking up with Aphrodite. (Note, since I've been asked: that's a metaphor about emotional drives, not literal women -- or goddesses.)
Also, this kind of thing:
An old answer: Dancing, waiting my turn with Arlene's Grocery World Famous Live Rock and Roll Karaoke Band, so that I can murder "Should I Stay Or Should I Go" and mourn for Joe Strummer. (Sadly, Arlene's phased out Friday live-band karaoke.)
but yet I could accuse me of such things that it
were better my mother had not borne me: I am very
proud, revengeful, ambitious, with more offences at
my beck than I have thoughts to put them in,
imagination to give them shape, or time to act them
in. What should such fellows as I do crawling
between earth and heaven? We are arrant knaves,
all; believe none of us.