That's why I blog sometimes: because I can't stand to read the news, whether it's on "healthy forest" (Why don't they just call it "Recycling Forests?") product or online or podcast. Thank someone -- maybe myself -- for not having a TV. That's another decision I don't need to make for inputting my head with news. Based on the past week of news, I could make up my own headlines (12 die n Baghdad car bomb; polar bears shed fur and move to Florida; and Condoleeza Rice signs peace pact with North Korea) and I wouldn't be surprised if they matched the real ones.
I heard a twitty sculptor speak last night at the Art and Technology Seminar series put on by UC Berkeley at Kroeber Hall, which is usually reserved for anthropologists. Martin Rees blathered on like a simulacrum of his sculptures, which resemble bodies without heads, orifices, or bones. He teamed up with a Japanese animator to make the sculptures do flips and pollywog trots on a computer screen, but afterwards, talking with Chris Allen (who has a great blog), Shannon Clark (started Meshforum), and Julia Novak (left her job in the Midwest and might never want to work again) at a cafe across the street, we all agreed that five seconds of Wil Wright's new still-unreleased multiplayer game, Spore, blasts Rees's mobile monsters out of the water.
There are geniuses and then there are smart people. Too bad, but there's a real dividing line between the two. The first class sometimes gains immortality (although not wealth necessarily) and the second class refers to the first class (as did Rees last night, who dropped more genius artist names than there were minutes in his talk) as if the magic would rub off on them.
Also, the second class -- the smart ones -- seem to expect more of geniuses. Geniuses are not only supposed to be innovative thinkers -- the ones who come up with new memes, technologies, and art -- they're also supposed to be kind and loving to competitors, thieves, ex wives, and assholes. And if they aren't always kind and loving to those who might want to take advantage of them, they will be attacked more harshly than anyone whose IQ wouldn't get them past the first question on the MENSA test.
Of course, if someone is a genius and ALSO kind and loving to people, animals, and assholes, as Wil Wright is perceived to be, then he's deified. He becomes a Saint.
Otherwise, he (or she) becomes the Devil.
I propose a "Let's Be Kind to Geniuses" month so they don't become part of history, like women, blacks, and whatever other endangered species are commemorated by designated national months.