Whenever you come across something that's quirky, raise your defenses...


What exactly is wrong with quirkiness? This is wrong with it. See, even a criminal like Rummy can be quirky. It's fun to be quirky because it means nothing to be quirky. It is like the word "excellence," which, as the late literary theorist Bill Readings pointed out, is used by universities and corporations because it really means nothing.
Generally, we hear a lot o f talk from University administrators about excellence, because it has becom e the unifying principle o f the contemporary University. C. P. Snow’s “ Two C ultures” have become “Two Excellences,” the humanistic and the scientific. As an integrating principle, excellence has the singular advantage o f being entirely meaning­less, or to put it more precisely, non-referential.
Because it is empty, anyone can strive for excellence. Rummy can bomb innocent civilians, be given an award for excellence, and get all quirky at the dinner table. The Beacon Hill Library voids the political with quirkiness.