"Actually, it’s incorrect to say they were the closers: In between their sets, a cynical marketing tool called Five Finger Death Punch played steakheaded bro-core for parts of an hour. Its members wore clothing bearing an energy drink company’s logo, and lead singer Ivan Moody’s basketball jersey read “CAPITALIST” on the back — ostensibly a reference to the band’s latest album, American Capitalist, but very subtle and cool all the same. Also, there was a drum solo. Anyway."

Here is my recap of a soggy, muddy weekend spent at the Heavy T.O. metal festival here in Toronto

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"For the typical music fan, Lecrae’s hard demeanor and crunk beats might belie what his lyrics are really about, his adoration of Jesus Christ."

I’ve always said that’s what his crunk beats belie.

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I wrote about last night’s Jane’s Addiction show for the National Post and even managed to use a weird thing Perry said about circumcising all of us as the lead. This, of course, follows the last review I wrote for the paper, where I slipped in the word “penis” seven times in what must be some kind of idiotic record. The lesson, as always, is to follow your dreams.

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MJ: You write in the book about the toll your job has taken on your personal life and your family. Do you have any regrets?

AS: There are a lot of careers you could say that about, but I think especially in journalism trying to balance your personal and professional life is endlessly frustrating. At the end of that war in 2006, I felt the cost of that more than I ever had. My marriage had fallen apart, I was away from my daughter, and I really didn’t have a sense of having a home. And that was what was so important about being in Marjayoun and rebuilding the home. At its most elemental, it was about trying to find home, and in the end, I did. It sounds like propaganda for the book, but it’s actually not. I now consider that house in Marjayoun—how do I put this?—it’s the place where I end up when I’m looking for home.

- Anthony Shadid in Mother Jones three weeks ago. He died today of an asthma attack.

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But, uh … as long as we’re on the subject of older white guys with guitars.

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"Forget women. Forget black or Latin stars or those of any other ethnic background. In a year in which the Grammys could have reasonably tried to sell progress as a narrative, it chose to end the night with a phalanx of older white men playing guitars, a battalion guarding the rickety old castle from attack, a defiant last stand of yesteryear."

Dagger.

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Counter-programming.

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A real person? Insane method-acting parody? Some sort of word-salad spam-robot SEO-magnet message? Yes.

A real person? Insane method-acting parody? Some sort of word-salad spam-robot SEO-magnet message? Yes.

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"He missed the stupid stuff everyone missed, the wifi and the workhorse chromium toasters, mass transportation and gratis transfers, rubbing cheese-puff dust on his trousers and calculating which checkout line was shortest, he missed the things unconjurable in reconstruction. That which will escape. His people. His family and friends and twinkly-eyed lunchtime counter folk. The dead. He missed the extinct. The unfit had been wiped out, how else to put it, and now all that remained were ruined like him. He missed the women he’d never get to sleep with. On the other side of the room, tantalizing at the next table, that miracle passing by the taqueria window giving serious wake. They wore too much makeup or projected complex emotions onto small animals, smiled exactly so, took his side when no else would, listened when no one else cared to. They were old money or fretted over ludicrously improbable economic disasters, teetotaled or drank like sailors, pecked like baby birds at his lips or ate him up greedily. They carried slim vocabularies or stooped to conquer in the wordsmith board games he never got the hang of. They were all gone, these faceless unknowables his life’s curator had been saving for just the right moment, to impart a lesson he’d probably never learn. He missed pussies that were raring to go when he slipped a hand beneath the elastic rim of the night-out underwear and he missed tentative but coaxable recesses, stubbled armpits and whorled ankle coins, birthmarks on the ass shaped like Ohio, said resemblance he had to be informed of because he didn’t know what Ohio looked like. The sighs. They were sweet-eyed or sad-eyed or so successful in commanding their inner turbulence so that he could not see the shadows. Flaking toenail polish and the passing remark about the scent of a nouveau cream that initiated a monologue about its provenance, special ingredients, magic powers, and dominance over all the other creams. The alien dent impressed by a freshly removed bra strap, a garment fancy or not fancy but unleashing big or small breasts either way. He liked big breasts and he liked small breasts; small breasts were just another way of doing breasts. Brains a plus but negotiable. Especially at 3:00 a.m., downtown. A fine fur tracing an earlobe, moles in exactly the right spot, imperfections in their divine coordination. He missed the dead he’d never lose himself in, be surprised by, disappointed in.
He missed shame and guilt and a time when something higher than dumb instinct directed his actions."

This year’s Literary Review Bad Sex Award finalists are in and hoo boy are they terrible. On a not-entirely-unrelated note, here’s a near-perfect excerpt from Colson Whitehead’s Zone One.

Oh, hello! Do you like Wonkette? Of course you do. Do you like me? Ha ha, shut up, yes. Well, then you will be delighted to know that I will be making dink jokes about Canadian politics on the premises once in a while.

Oh, hello! Do you like Wonkette? Of course you do. Do you like me? Ha ha, shut up, yes. Well, then you will be delighted to know that I will be making dink jokes about Canadian politics on the premises once in a while.

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