Entries in nostalgia (3)


Gary Shteyngart on the jewish deli of the past and the authenticity hoax

Gary Shteyngart visits a Toronto deli:

The authentic Jewish deli, according to Gary Shteyngart, should be "greasy," inspiring "both excitement and revulsion." Caplansky's Delicatessen, where he's sitting at a corner table, devouring a breakfast omelette with salami, tomato and tongue, "is very smooth 'cause it's new." But he's not complaining: "There's all that Chagalllike mythologization of the past. It wasn't a great past. There's a reason why we're not living there now."


Authenticity Watch: VHS 

From - where else -- the NYT.

Technological slumming -- check:

“You just don’t get the same feeling in a pristine print of a DVD,” Mr. Kinem said. “With VHS it’s like I’m experiencing an old grind-house movie theater. I would never watch them on a computer.”

Old-timey small-town slow-ism -- check, check, check:

“VHS represents a period when you could walk into a mom-and-pop video store, and what you could rent was limited to what was right in front of you,” Ms. Davis said. “There were these amazing illustrations on the big boxes, and no one had any idea what the movie was. You were taking a gamble. It’s the opposite of instant gratification.”

Nostalgia for manual labour -- check.

“VHS is cumbersome,” said Mr. Husney (who was creative director of Intervision before moving to Drafthouse). “You have to maintain it. It has to fit on a shelf. You may have to dust it off. But you also get to interact with a piece of art on a personal level.”

Thanks to Simon Cott.




1. Chinawood:  A five-hour drive southwest of Shanghai, in the hills near a manufacturing hub, something like a mirage appears among the smokestacks: a full-scale replica of Beijing's Forbidden City.

2. Hyper, local parenting:

While there’s nothing ambiguous about Storm’s genitalia, they aren’t telling anyone whether their third child is a boy or a girl.

The only people who know are Storm’s brothers, Jazz, 5, and Kio, 2, a close family friend and the two midwives who helped deliver the baby in a birthing pool at their Toronto home on New Year’s Day.

3. Accidental Chinese Hipsters

4. Why the "Adele is Authentic" debate is stupid:

I post this in a way as a warning; we're probably going to see stories setting Adele up as the Next Great Hope For Realness percolate on this side of the pond soon, since some critics over here never saw an authenticity fight they couldn't avoid.

5. Electricity is inauthentic in baseball