So if “manufactured” is unfair, what is the right metaphor for Britney’s relationship to the pop machine? Scanning the pop culture of the late 90s gives us a better possibility: mecha, the Japanese anime genre where beautiful, tragic youth fuse themselves to sublime, state of the art machines. Britney is not the machine’s puppet; she’s its pilot.
men and shirtlessness
violence and dads
Wolverine and healing
Akira Kurosawa and the barely receding mists
Mathieu Kassovitz and the Indomitable Gaul
Miranda July and homeliness
bullying and crying
Kelly Reichardt and entropy
the magic hour and Tree of Life trailer
I take my shirt off because it is permitted and, as a man, I am entitled to whatever is permitted …
— from my piece, What Makes a Man Take His Shirt Off, now up on Nailed Magazine
Growing up, my dad professed his love for us at least hourly, supported us all unconditionally in each of our endeavors, hugged and fed us. I’m certain his proudest accomplishment in this life is his success in giving each of his children a childhood very different than his own. Now grown and more familiar with how patterns of abuse work, I am not entirely clear how he managed to do this.
"The healing process, normally so slow and hard to render visually, has inspired varied and often beautiful interpretations from artists drawing Wolverine comics over the years, piling up endless new and striking takes on the lyricism of bullet holes that close in minutes, lacerations and puncture wounds knitting before eyes, burns smoothing, disease retreating, even just his goofy haircut growing back after a fire, and all of this perfectly tempered by pain.”
I wrote about getting hit by a car, healing, and the death of Wolverine for Nailed Magazine.
Olympian religion is essentially a religion of the successful, comfortable, and healthy ruling-class. The downtrodden peasant, harassed by the necessities of keeping body and soul together in a naturally unfruitful land, crippled by debt and social injustice, asked something very different of his gods: the Olympians bore a discouraging resemblance to his oppressors.
— Roger Packman Hinks, Myth and Allegory in Ancient Art