A Mind That Suits What doesn't kill me, makes me laugh... usually.

Thursday, February 05, 2004 :::
A Mind That Suits had somehow failed to notice that Peggy Noonan has now rejoined us on a regular basis. And she is firing on all cylinders, as someone who takes off a year or so should be, and wouldn't we all like to? Her comments on the Super Bowl Half Time Flap, (or as it is known to guys, the Event Which Revealed That Reporters Don't Know the Word "Pastie") are dead on the mark, and so they are linked here.

The one point on which he would dissent from her is her savaging of young Mr. Timberlake. Mr. Timberlake's way of keeping us entertained does indeed say something about our culture, but not so much about him as Ms. Noonan thinks. And what it says about our culture is every bit as disturbing as the other things Ms. Noonan points to.

One doubts Justin Timberlake will soon enrole in a nuclear physics program, but Peggy Noonan obviously thinks he is a moron. Aside from the normal way boys that age are almost all morons-- full of themselves and impatient with the fallibility of others--he seems pretty normal to A Mind That Suits who, let's face it, spends a lot of time surrounded by boys that age, as he is a college teacher. And even his phony "badness" seem pretty normal for a lad who came of age and became world famous at the same moment, fell in love with the wrong girl, who happens to be the one that every red-blooded young guy on the planet would love to have the opportunity to make the same mistake with, and has so much money he is surrounded by yes men who, one is certain, will remain rich after he loses this version of his fortune, which he bids fair to do,if he does not slow down.

But he is also enormously talented. Two Christmasses ago, A Mind That Suits bought his first solo album as a throw-away purchase--alongside four Johnny Cash albums, please note, some classic blues, and some very good recent rock--and listened to it three or four times. It is indeed disposable, and it is hard to figure out why it took him so many months in Sweden to make it, but it did. But he is a good singer and above all a lissome and a graceful dancer. Every red-blooded young guy on the planet would love to just walk the way he does. Which is why A Mind That Suits says "this version" of his fortune, because after he has spent it all this time around, he will still have some kind of career.

But what this writer, who, by profession, must see past the misleading blankness of so many young people, sees in young Mr. Timberlake is that this privileged young man (the son of a senior bank vice-president from Memphis, if the memory serves) doesn't really have much to say, because in the course of a normal privileged education, not much got put in there. That our culture so routinely fails in passing on any of its many riches, and so richly rewards the resulting blank-mindedness, is something to worry about indeed.

Along with all the sleaze, which Mr. Timberlake is accountable for adding to.

::: posted by A Mind That Suits at 2:19 PM



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What doesn't kill me, makes me laugh... usually.

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