The Jim Norton Show
Photographer Zak Arcander on Butterflies, Raves, and Being Alive
In Defense of Taking Selfies at Auschwitz and Other Depressing Places
A teenager from Alabama took a photo in front of a concentration camp where an estimated 1,000,000 people were killed. She did so while smiling. As you might have guessed, that did not sit well with the internet. In a New York Post article on the now-infamous Breanna Mitchell Auschwitz selfie, the writer quotes a particularly vitriolic response that simply said, “Did you manage to take any of you laughing inside a gas chamber or maybe one with your head stuck in a cremator?” A fair question which I don’t believe she took the time to answer.
In an instant, Breanna became as close to the Devil as you can get without being Donald Sterling. Business Insider collected some of the more amusing insults and reactionsfrom Twitter, which amounted to “fuck you” and little else. Despite this concerted effort to make her feel bad about herself, Breanna has continued to publicly defend her actions. It’s almost like she has so much self-esteem and so little self-awareness that she’d have to be the only kind of person who would be dumb enough to take a selfie at a concentration camp.
By being completely ignorant of how some would interpret her vague digital communication (the only thing that’s obvious from her photo is that she’s happy and she’s at Auschwitz. The rest is not clear), she’s influenced a global conversation on the limits of self-involvement. Some have come to her defense, reminding us all that she’s just a kid with a dead dad who shared her love of history. Others are plenty happy to keep fucking with her, which has pushed Breanna to make her Twitter page private. The internet is paying attention, and forming strong opinions about a picture she took over a month ago. Isn’t that something to be proud of? She’s already proud of herself for going to Auschwitz. Why not be proud of this too?
From the 2014 VICE Photo Issue: Spirit and Matter by Michael Bühler-Rose
One Version of ‘One Version of Terence McKenna’s Life,’ by Tao Lin
The public story of Terence McKenna’s life—in my view, and by my estimates—is a ~450-page book, which could be titled One Version of Terence McKenna’s Life. It’s composed of Terence’s memoir, True Hallucinations (1993), his essays “I Understand Philip K. Dick” and “Among Ayahuasqueros,” certain sentences and anecdotes in dozens of his interviews and talks, and ~15% of The Brotherhood of the Screaming Abyss - My Life with Terence McKenna (2012) by Dennis McKenna, Terence’s younger brother by four years.
In a lecture called “Surfing Finnegan’s Wake,” Terence referred to a book of literary criticism that told James Joyce’s 656-page novel, Finnegans Wake (1939), in a one-page version, a ten-page version, and a 200-page version. The following biography (which to some degree presupposes knowledge of Terence McKenna’s Memes) is my eight-page, fractal-inflected, short-story-esque version of One Version of Terence McKenna’s Life.
The world which we perceive is a tiny fraction of the world which we canperceive, which is a tiny fraction of the perceivable world. – Terence McKenna, 1987. [“Understanding and Imagination in the Light of Nature”]
1. Paonia, Colorado (1946-1962)
Terence Kemp McKenna was born on November 16, 1946, in “a Colorado cattle and coal-mining town of 1,500 people named Paonia,” he said in an interview in 1993. He elaborated:
They wanted to name it Peony but didn’t know how to spell it. In your last year of high school, you got your girlfriend pregnant, married her, and went to work in the coalmines. An intellectual was someone who read TIME.
"Three years ago, I released a video for every single track from Alpocalypse. I’m not gonna say I’m the first person to do that. I’m sure someone did it before me. But what irked me was, when I came out with this eight videos in eight days thing, people were like ‘Oh, you’re pulling a Beyoncé.’ and I have to be like, ‘No, actually Beyoncé was pulling a ‘Weird Al.’"
The 21 Sexiest Things About Sex
Sex! What’s it all about? “Fanny farts” and creeping to the bathroom with cum dribbling down your leg, if this article in the Metro is anything to go by. Hannah Gale, who wrote the “The 21 Unsexiest Things About Sex,” says she’s “just being honest” and challenging “unrealistic” sex scenes in rom-coms. But honestly, if you’re that fucking basic that your view of sex is in any way influenced by rom-coms, then I’m sorry, you actually deserve shit sex. She doesn’t even preface her list with any real acknowledgment that sex can be great fun, or that women’s pleasure is important. It comes across like “women don’t really enjoy sex, it’s all just so dirty and embarrassing.” Way to go, Hannah.
The article’s been shared over 112,000 times on social media. No doubt by the sort of women who spend their weekends listening to Kylie and drinking white wine spritzers. The kind of people who bought Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus in the 90s and rabbit dildos in the noughties—but only “for a laugh,” because Samantha from Sex and the City had one. I refuse to believe any men who aren’t called Percy or Harold shared this story because given the chance most guys would shag a watermelon so long as they a) didn’t have to wear a condom and b) could cum inside it. Like they give a shit about awkwardness. Just kidding, fellas. I think?
There’s probably a serious point to be made about carnal politics and how, in our over-sanitized, digitized world, the squelchy business of sex can be such a source of embarrassment. I could keep certain political debate sites ticking over all week with my thoughts on the pressure for women to look a certain way and why, with the pornification of our culture and lack of useful education around modern sexuality. Or I could get into the fact that these days many women feel like sex is something to be performed rather than enjoyed with wanton inhibition—but I’d rather just talk about sex.
So here are my 21 sexiest things about sex. I did a callout for suggestions on Facebook and answers ranged from “Sacred sex where you commit an act of bonding” to “Rimming until your partner is begging you to fuck them.” Pigs. “Making love” is all well and good, but it always fucks you in the end. This list is about the delights of a fully-fledged passion. I’m not including the sexiest part of sex, which, of course, is our imagination and the mystery of what’s to come. You may not agree with my points and, despite my best efforts to fuck as many people as possible, I cannot reflect every single person’s experience of desire, so if you have better suggestions about what makes sex sexy, do let me know in the comments. Shit like that turns me on.
PARIS LEES’ 21 SEXIEST THINGS ABOUT SEX
1 – The smell. If you don’t like the smell of sex, I don’t know, maybe you’re not human? Sex smells… sexy?
2 – Socks. When your trusted fuck-buddy stuffs socks inside your mouth and ties your hands behind your back while ramming you like a champ. You people all do that, right?
3 – When a guy cums inside you and leaves himself inside and then you feel it getting hard again and he fucks you and cums again without ever taking it out. Not only is that sexy, you don’t have to worry about fanny farts that way, Hannah.
4 – Squeezing a guy while he’s inside you. It’s kind of like your pussy/butt saying, “I got you, homie.”
5 – Speaking of which, when he puts it in. And it feels like you’re sitting on an air freshener canister. Oh. My. Lord. What do you mean it’s “not all in yet”? Go, go gadget dick!