JEN GRAVES is given altogether too much space in this week's Stranger in which to jabber about visual art shows in Venice and Istanbul. Over the course of those thousands (thousands!) of words, which appear to have been selected at random out of a burlap sack, Ms. Graves bloviates about watching television, African criminals eating pizza, being in bed—anything and everything, so long as it is on a tangent.
The overall moral of the story, insofar as one may be detected, appears to be this: People live differently in other parts of the world. Stunning, no? How about this: "Things are in motion: You may be asleep but your double is awake." This sentence—indeed, the entire piece—is an example of everything that is wrong with Ms. Graves's grade-school musings, which are entirely fanciful instead of in any way meaningful, lacking a single shred of context or serious consideration, and aimed at a readership that exists only in her own boggled mind. It is all just another round in the ongoing game of stringing words together called "Jen Graves's career."
Because the chorus of reader snores was not sufficiently loud to halt her dithering after the disaster in the feature spot, Ms. Graves dithers about more so-called art elsewhere in the paper, going on at length about tinfoil baskets and foreign-language cartoon panels involving priapism. Then, just to add conflict of interest to her other multifarious journalistic failings this week, she must also praise a prior Stranger Genius in the books section.
But on to a few of the other tawdrinesses of this week's paper—and they are many.
In the music section, GRANT BRISSEY jubilantly acts as the mouthpiece for the disgusting antics of a rock-and-roll band named after the act of expectoration. Then his colleague DAVE SEGAL shares the tales of a former jailbird who also purports to make music. And, because the pages surrounding the advertisements for nightclubs must be filled, there is the usual assortment of columns about various depravities, including one I had not heretofore noticed called "The Homosexual Agenda"—is that not the entirety of The Stranger?
Pressing reluctantly onward, in news: GOLDY, a faithless demagogue who eagerly preaches atheism except when it is politically expedient for him to lean on his Jewish heritage, attempts to explode the fact that a church owns a hospital into a "controversy." He fails, and the headline is particularly inane. Then the word "Endorse" is misspelled in the headline of CIENNA MADRID's pathetic lovefest for the unexceptional city council candidate "Bobby" Forch. Presumably, her ESL antics are vetted by an editor with a slightly less tenuous grasp on the language before they are published; additionally, according to the masthead, The Stranger employs copy editors. Apparently they are just as incompetent as the rest of the staff.