So I had planned to write about the psychological atmosphere of Boulder in the dying weeks of summer, and about a book called One Hundred Poems from the Chinese, and some other things I forget.
Instead, I got into some kind of idiotic political argument on Facebook.
I want to ask you to think about something for a second.
Have you ever read the comments on a YouTube video? If you haven't, you won't understand what I'm talking about, so go ahead and find a video you like over there - something that really inspires or delights you would be best - and then scroll down a bit.
Ok, now I want you to imagine a world where everything you ever do in your entire life has a YouTube comment section attached to it. Think really hard about what that would be like.
That right there, friends, that is the world that Mark Zuckerberg is trying to build for you.
Twice Wojtyla spent long periods with his hands over his face. The crowd below watched him, fascinated. All the lights were on him. It was hugely dramatic and unexpected, the pope unplugged, as it were. He was offering an example of what the spiritual life would look like; his message was mysterious and charismatic. If you did not know anything about the religion he represented, you would say that it was one of the most beautiful ever imagined, wonderfully speculative and exotic, good- humoured and sweet but also exquisite and exalted. While he lost nothing of his strength and power, the glory of his office, Wojtyla seemed at times almost sad about his own elevated position, suggesting that his real life was the one he spent alone in prayer and contemplation, the one we had seen when he sat without moving, his face covered. He was offering this rich private life of his to the crowd as the life they could have if they followed him.
The spell was broken somewhat, and a sign of the future offered, by a press conference held the following day at the monastery. All the journalists were told to be there as a very important announcement was to be made. I wondered if John Paul was ready finally to announce that Catholics could use artificial contraception, or that women could be priests, or that he was going to abolish the rule of clerical celibacy, but instead a local journalist told me not to bother going, the conference would merely announce that Danuta, the wife of Lech Walesa, had not, despite the rumours, slept in the monastery the previous night, that no woman had ever done so. Scotching these rumours was, for the Church in Poland, a matter of the utmost importance, it seemed.
This is worth reading.
We've been driving around today listening to a tape of Neil Young's Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere. Here is what I know about this tape without looking at Wikipedia: