There’s a Crack In Grindavík

That’s how the lava gets in.

The ground is opening up under the Icelandic town of Grindavík, which was evacuated Friday night. Today the Iceland Monitor reported “A lot of damage in Grindavík” in an utterly charming voice that feels like your pal from Grindavík telling you what’s been going on:

The grass is soft and yielding widely close to cracks when walking on it, indicating that there is a widespread lack of soil under the grass. Thus, a rescuer found himself stepping with one foot in one place through grass without being harmed. A journalist at has therefore been directed to stay on the tarmac because of this weakness in the soil.

That tarmac doesn’t look great either, though.

Looking at the fissure.

The Monitor also has a Grindavík livecam on YouTube, where your view of the town’s imminent collapse into the planet’s fiery bowels is sponsored by Samsung.

“That's how it is on this bitch of an earth,” wrote Samuel Beckett about exactly this situation in the scene from Waiting For Godot where the ground opens up and swallows a harmless Icelandic town for no reason instead of any of the millions of people and institutions who deserve it. Peter Thiel, for example, who is so sad to find himself vilified by the viciously homophobic Trump party he funded into existence without even getting the massive regulatory rollback he thought he was buying, or “Civitai, an online marketplace for sharing AI models that enables the creation of nonconsensual sexual images of real people” according to 404’s Emanuel Maiberg, and which now allows users to pay “bounties” for models trained on real people. I assume the Anime NYC Marine Corps Battle Dome is already at least one level down into Hades, and fortunately the unstable ground of large scale public architecture has swallowed UCSB’s windowless nightmare dorm Munger Hall. But I can’t remember the last time I wanted the earth to open up and purify me down to the atomic level in its blazing carbon furnace more than when I read Saturday’s Chotining of fanatical West Bank settler Daniella Weiss:

I think Ukrainians wanted to go to Europe because they didn’t want to get bombed.

And the Gazan people want to get bombed by us?

Maybe one option, rather than bombing them, would be to help try and develop a society for them in Gaza, right?

O.K., I wish you luck. Go ahead. Go for it.

Someone Finally Made a TikTok Suburban Mining Lady Explainer:

I’m not the only one who’s been increasingly baffled by this, right? Speaking of baffled, why is literary agent Andrew Wylie doing press all of a sudden? Alex Blasdel has a long profile of him in The Guardian:

When Wylie Googled Kissinger’s name in 2008, he was confronted with books attacking his humanitarian record. “Kissinger was depicted as a war criminal who enjoyed killing babies – basically a monster,” Wylie said. “So I went to him and said: ‘Henry, this is not good legacy management.’”

He also did a shorter but no less punchy interview with David Marchese in the New York Times Magazine:

Let’s say you’re inviting some people to your house for dinner. Do you want everyone to arrive? Or do you want a select number of intelligent people who are amusing and understand what you’re talking about? The latter, I think. There are some people I don’t want to have join the dinner. They deserve to live, but they don’t need to come to my house for supper.

“They deserve to live” is such an incredible burn here. Wylie comes off like a real arrogant son of a bitch but then later he won me over with this answer:

So what should a writer’s goals be? Just on the quality of the work. The kind of ineffable beauty of something extremely well expressed.

It’s unclear what he has to gain from any of this, though. Much like it’s unclear what the world’s second richest non-Frenchman and Immortal Dragon Lord Jeff Bezos’ age-appropriate mistress-turned-fiancée Lauren Sanchez has to gain from a Vogue profile, however fawning it may be (which is, for the record: very fawning). Sanchez is apparently a sort of big-breasted1 superhero helicopter pilot fashion model manic pixie soccer mom with abs who is best friends with other hyperdense celebrity-industrial-complex singularities like Kim Kardashian and Diane von Furstenberg. If you spent one million dollars every day, it would take you almost four hundred and forty two years to spend Jeff Bezos’ current $161.3 billion fortune, and you would still probably not manage to be as preternaturally self-actualized and enthusiastic about literally everything as Lauren Sanchez. Perfect Vogue content, is what I’m saying.

Speaking of our Immortal Dragon Lord, Intern Kira has some exciting news about the predatory international consumer monopoly that he used to work for.

Cyberpunk 2023

Late-stage capitalism is getting later every day. Amazon is now offering healthcare services for just $9 a month (with some pretty big caveats). So exactly what kind of dystopian narrative are we living in? 

TikToker Jessie B points out that this new development is eerily similar to a detail of the video game Cyberpunk, in which “a mega corporation in a dystopian future controls healthcare and basically decides who lives or dies.” Or maybe we’ve crossed over into the Pixar cinematic universe, where megacorp Buy n Large becomes so powerful it destroys the planet and sends us to space. You know? Or perhaps Amazon is analogous to Weyland-Yutani, the profiteering conglomerate from the Alien series. Is the scary bald man going to start implanting us with alien embryos? 

When it comes down to it, our reality is both stranger and much more mundane than anything depicted in these iconic stories. To paraphrase Slavoj Žižek, late-stage capitalism is one sneaky bastard. Has anyone checked on that guy lately? He’s probably scarfing down several hot dogs at once.

—Kira Deshler is voting for the Pixar Timeline if that counts at all

Imagine you are eating one hot dog and in your other hand, you hold another hot dog. While you, as it were, take a bite of the first hot dog, what you do not see—what you will not, I would say, allow yourself to see—is that you have already taken a bite of the second hot dog. That second hot dog bite is: ideology.

Ideology is the hot dog you do not know you know you’re eating.

—From Atrocity Exhibition: Slavoj Žižek on the Music of Joy Division, an absolute classic of philosophy and gothic post-punk music criticism, now sadly out of print. Do not Google it.

I think that’s about enough for today. Here’s Séamas O'Reilly in the Irish Examiner on the third anniversary one of the funniest things to ever happen in political history: Rudy Giuliani’s Four Seasons Total Landscaping press conference. And here’s what happens when a horse gets loose on a cargo plane.

Today‘s Song: Craig Finn, “Some Guns”

Thanks to Ash Ponders for today’s song. Thanks to Leonard Cohen for today’s subject line. Thanks to the music of Joy Division for inspiring Žižek’s most provocative and eloquent philosophy. Is Gonzo a turkey vulture with a chicken fetish? What is The Humanoid-Anthro-Alien Sex Triangle? And other such questions, next time on: Today in Tabs.

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