Do you get the feeling these days that you are living through a train wreck - in slow motion? I do, and it would be no surprise if you did too, given the daily, no hourly, pronouncements that tough times lie ahead, with even tougher ones beyond that. There is an air of retrenchment, and more and more folks appear to walk around with the conviction that a pile of bricks is about to land on their heads.
Otherwise things are pretty normal. The sun rises each day. The same silly stuff is going down on TV. In fact, there's a new season of it. We're still playing football (much better these days). So why don't we lighten up a bit? Remember what the guy said about having nothing to fear but fear itself.
In the distraction department, our cover story this week touches on something completely different. Contributor Kevin Revolinski introduces us to a mild revision of history by author David Hillman. In "Everybody Musta Got Stoned," Revolinski reports on Hillman's research, as recounted in his latest book, which indicates that drug use was more common, and more influential, than orthodox historians care to admit. In some ways Hillman's story is as much about the freedom of academic inquiry as it is about drug use.
The ancients may have been toking over the line at the same time they were dreaming up democracy, but at least they weren't sucking blood. You can't blame the current popularity of vampirism on the classic Greeks. Just in time for the Halloween mania that will grip our city this weekend, Rosemary Zurlo-Cuva catalogues the many ways that vampires have intruded into the worlds of film, TV and literature. Draw what conclusions you will for the phenomenon (a metaphor for imperialism? financial excess?), but these days you've got your evil vampires (traditional), your heroic vampires (something new!) and those with whom you might have an interesting conversation on the bus.
I am not going to make any connection between Halloween and next Tuesday's election, other than to say that one is mindless fun and the other is truly scary. You can decide which is which according to your own fears. I am going to say that you are invited to join Isthmus next Tuesday night for an election results party at the High Noon Saloon, brought to you by Lake Louie Brewing. For $5, enjoy Gomeroke while the results come in; you'll have plenty of company to exult or despair with. More information is available in The Guide.