by carl wilson

Now Hears This

Sorry about posting brown-outs the past couple of days. Weird scenes inside the data mine. And now the news.

Today Now magazine's annual "Best of Toronto" issue named Zoilus one of the city's best blogs. (Along with Neil Lee's Beatnik Pad and our friends Sean K. Robb's and David Akin's sites.) The overall Best Website citation went to Infiltration and you can't deny that - "the zine about going places you're not supposed to go" is a mindblower. I do find it funny that PopWherry and Chromewaves weren't mentioned, considering how much more active they are than, say, Sean K.'s site.

Speaking of PopWherry - all right, Aaron, you're forcing our hand: We demand more Eminem and less Ashlee. We mean it, maaan: Em's Mosh is the video of the year, but as Aaron says, it should have come out a few weeks earlier. Don't know if it's in time to bump the under-30 U.S. voting rate up 25% now, which was surely its job - along with telling its own self-reflexive meta-tale of how the (always) least frivolous of his generation's most successful pop stars implicitly rebukes the (sometime) amorality of his earlier records to produce one of the loudest (in weight not volume) public-service announcements his country has heard (ever). If the youth vote isn't up at least some because of it, it will be because the administration has gamed the system so foxily that ballots cast by the under-30 are reverse-Logan's-Runned into oblivion. Meanwhile, read this rather up-cheering take on the situation from a self-proc'd "black young'n" on Salon, even though linking to Salon seems so 1999.

As for Ashlee: We're shocked by lipsynching? Really, since when? All right, how 'bout payola? We shocked by that? Have you ever been informed that many great musicians have had bad record contracts? Do you feel desirous to peruse my 10,000-page dissertation on the voice-appropriative disjunctive rupture of Arthur Crudup? Oh and I'm not sure those are Jessica Simpson's real tits, howzaboutyoo? Uh. Ahem.

Back to Now: Their readers also have kind words for Mrs. Zoilus (for, I think, the third year in a row) and Now's editors put together a tip sheet on the local music scene.

Of course, we all know these alt-weekly best-of things are just thrown-together advertising-driven hook-and-lure stunts. But lookie, it worked. So one-and-a-half cheers for us.

News | Posted by zoilus on Thursday, October 28 at 10:17 AM | Linking Posts | Comments (6)



tbone - your post sobered me up after a loooong night at the club....dammit....

Read broadly and frequently. That is my plea to the "new" generation. Our world demands it.

Posted by Andrew on October 30, 2004 2:30 AM



Hey Carl, congrats for the best of listing in NOW.

Hey Andrew, bottom line: it is too much to ask people to read those writers, or pretty much any political writer. Ive done a lot of research dealing with literacy levels over the past few years, and I can say with confidence that a lot of people wont read about foreign policy and if they do it will mean nothing to them. In Canada for example, less than 20% of the population has a university degree. Hell only 16 of the 22 million people over the age of 19 have a high school diploma. And how many of them have English as a second language? If you want a population to vote, you have to accept that a lot of people won't understand the issues.

Posted by tbone on October 29, 2004 3:20 PM



"A multimillionaire rapper with a history of drug abuse and domestic violence convictions who still manages to live the high life thanks to his life in the - wait for it - United States of America."

I give up. Sayyid Qutb or Leo Strauss?

Posted by Stayshy on October 29, 2004 12:36 PM



Oh, and in re gaming the system: That was mostly rhetoric. I try not to be so cynical as to think the election would actually be vote-rigged. Though some of the efforts at vote suppression that have been reported so far make me wonder. And my exhaustion with being lied to makes me bitter. But I should keep that shit in check until there's more sizzle to the beef.

Posted by Zoilus on October 29, 2004 12:18 AM



For every one of the instances of pigheaded left-liberal (if it deserves to be called that) behaviour by individuals, Andrew, there's a countervailing one (or a dozen) we could cite of pigheaded conservative (if it deserves to be called that) behaviour. Personally I think what a few jerks among millions of people do isn't relevant to any intelligent argument no matter what side they're on.

I'm not going to get into debating with you - this site's the wrong place for it, even if i do get off into my tirades - but i'm 100% agreed that people should debate, and should read, and engage on a deeper level, including some of the people you mention, though my list would differ greatly. (I've peeked at your site, and admire its liveliness, but we don't share much in the way of worldview.) But for a young person it may start with Eminem - the way that for a lot of kids my age, for instance, it might have started w/the Clash or Billy Bragg or whoever - and expand from there. Everybody needs an entry point and music is a good galvanizing one... And frankly, democracy's a lousy system (just better than all the others) and one of its flaws is people voting for all kinds of moronic reasons. The ones in the Eminem video aren't much worse than the ones in most campaign ads or gay-baiting propaganda from "family values" groups - which is what, some reports this week are saying, President Bush is counting on to mobilize his base out there. I'd take Em's simplifications in this case over such sexualized hate mongering any day.

I'd just like everybody to read over that last sentence again and have the appropriate ironic chuckle.

Posted by Zoilus on October 29, 2004 12:15 AM



Wow...powerful video. Eminem has my respect as an artist. Here's my beef:

If this video is the only reason why kids are going out and voting then I might be with Trey Parker and Matt Stone - who wonder if that's a good thing. Getting young people involved is one thing - doing it with a video that recycles arguments you might find in an al-Qaeda recruitment video is another. Eminem deserves his opinion - let's not treat it as holy writ.

For all the talk of Republican mischief in the voting process (and there is undoubtedly some), it's John Kerry that continues to promulgate the rumours of a draft against an unequivocal Bush denial, students throwing pies at conservative polemicist Ann Coulter, a registered Democrat trying to run over Katherine Harris, and Democrats race-baiting by predicting the disenfranchisement of African American voters in Florida.

If Bush does win it will not be because the vast right wing conspiracy "gamed" the system - it will be because Bush won the requisite amount of electoral college votes. Let's hope all of the states can certify those electoral college votes in their constitutionally mandated periods.

I just hope it's big one way or the other.

Bottom line: is it too much to ask people - in addition to listening to artists like Eminem and Michael Moore - to read the Beinarts, Sullivans, Corns, Davis Hansons, William F. Buckleys, and Mark Steyns of the world?

I'd hate to think I got my only foreign policy instruction from a multimillionaire rapper with a history of drug abuse and domestic violence convictions who still manages to live the high life thanks to his life in the - wait for it - United States of America.

I know we're smarter than that.

Again - my apologies for the hijack of your thought-provoking website.

Posted by Andrew on October 28, 2004 11:04 PM




Zoilus by Carl Wilson