Lately, I spend an inordinate percentage of my blogging time reading and deleting junk comments. Deleting them because they are, like, clogging up my bandwidth, man; reading them because you never know when the spam machine is going to cough up something lovely or at least useful, something I can repurpose as content. Something like this:

spiritual warfare and breathing problems

order of operations word problem

algebra 2 problems

monovision problem

preschool behavior problem

or this:

elegram taurus worktable? cottony, clipboard cottony.
polygynous proverbial buxtehude seagram frog timon, telegram
andover libido escape libido constrain.

mingle heathen frog

airplane mingle idiom? timon, seagram redemptive.
operon jasper libido lash mingle elute, heathen
operon oval saxophone idiom polygynous.

stepmother taurus timon

mingle buxtehude saxophone? townsend, refer escape.

redemptive democrat.

or this:

monetary monotonous Kerouac.panning buffets.thunderbolt

I like that: “monetary monotonous Kerouac.” It says something. I’ve always thought Kerouac was overrated, anyway; Capote was right on the mark there. You know who’s underrated, or underappreciated anyway? This David Mitchell guy. After Cloud Atlas, I went back to his first novel, Ghostwritten, which is a very similar series of interlinked episodes (some characters even overlap between the two). Mitchell is a wizard. He writes with a brain-melting virtuosity that seems effortless but must have required a lot of hard work (at least I fucking hope so). It’s not showoffy brilliance like that of, say, Richard Powers; he writes involving stories with compelling characters, gets you hooked in, then pulls the rug out from under you and starts over again. This is the kind of writing that makes you wish you were smarter, because you just know you’re missing something. But as Rumsfeld might have said, you have to read with the brain you have, not the one you wish you had.