Whatever Happened?

Don't ask Charles Entertainment Cheese.

Whatever Happened to Britney?

There were two striking responses to the NYT Britney Spears documentary yesterday, neither really about Britney all that much. Mara Wilson wrote about growing up inside “The Narrative,” or the stories that Hollywood and the media tell about famous young girls, which are often unrelated to the truth. And in The Cut, former Rookie Tavi Gevinson wrote at greater length and depth about being a famous teen girl, and the ways that “empowerment” doesn’t map to actual power. A lot of this one is about abuse and her own trauma so it’s worth knowing that going into it.

Whatever Happened to Charles Entertainment Cheese?

Whatever Happened to Art?

If you’re like any normal meat human, you’ve often found yourself looking at a cartoon online and wondering: “how fungible is this?” The hot acronym in the art-tabs world right now is “NFT,” which stands for “non-fungible token,” which is a way to burn cash and fossil fuels to create a number that no one else is allowed to own, and then use that number to point to a work of art that is infinitely reproducible. Think of it like buying a very finely-wrought platinum nameplate that says “I OWN THIS” and then attaching it to the ocean. Also the nameplate is just a number. Obviously this is being hailed as the future of art collecting. Bari Weiss got out of the Fabergé game just before this St. Petersburg egg scandal landed, but if all artworks had NFTs attached, couldn’t we come up with much more complicated ways to rip off art collectors? You bet we could. Robin Sloan took a look at NFTs earlier this month but instead invented Amulets, which are little poems that are more “valuable” the more 8s in a row appear in their SHA-256 hash. Here try it yourself! They could be made into NFTs, but every poem already has its own unique hash so why bother? If you find any good amulets please tweet them at me.

Whatever Happened to Ads?

There’s only one (paid) ad this week! I’m gonna go broke unless some of you buy some for next month.1

>> The Media Classifieds:

>>That second ad was just me, Rusty, promoting a newsletter I like. Want to promote your job opening / pitch call / new project / ecommerce brand / newsletter? Click through for rates, testimonials and to get in touch.

Lightning Round:

Whatever happened to Will Wilkinson? He grew up, and grew out of his dumb teen libertarianism. Would that everyone had. Whatever happened to South Dakota Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg? He hit something with his car that he “thought was a deer.” Turns out “detectives told the Republican official they had found a pair of broken reading glasses inside his Ford Taurus. They belonged to the man he killed.” Whatever happened to the guy that blew up Nashville on Christmas? Lizard People. Whatever happened to Eeby Deeby? Ryan Broderick tracked down its origins.2 Whatever happened to the n-word? Liz Spiers says: we’re still not using it. Whatever happened to the Grumman Long Life Vehicle? If you’re American you know it as “the mail truck,” and here’s the upcoming replacement. Jason Torchinsky says it should be a convertible, and I agree. Whatever happened to house shows? This thread made me cry. Whatever happened to diversity? “New York Times Calls for Workplace Changes in Diversity Report.” Why didn’t anyone think of writing a report before? That ought to take care of it.

Whatever Happened to Tabs?

I started writing way too late today because I was listening to this episode of Book Fight with Lyz Lenz and (1) yes, it’s an indefensible 100 minutes long and (2) yes, I only started listening because someone tweeted that she mentioned Tabs and I am a hot compost heap that turns external validation into newsletters but I found myself unable to stop listening to it, so that’s why this post is approximately 100 minutes late. There’s some good writing advice in there and a little behind the scenes goss from her Seth Abramson profile.

But speaking of Tabs, tomorrow will be Season 4’s first Guest Tabs! And who could it possibly be but the original intern Bijan Stephen, now a multimedia sensation at The Verge, The Nation, truly great podcast Fun City, and elsewhere. He promises it will be “a loosey goosey one,” so get ready for that.

Today’s Song: The Strokes, “What Ever Happened?”

~ I wait and tell myself "life ain't tabs" ~

I’ll see you Friday at the open thread. Subscribe if you don’t already. Follow @bijanstephen for good Twitch.


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