Overcoming a Cruel Aesthetic

Sometimes, there is no place lower to go than the depths of a tasteless, public, aesthetic parading itself on the paving stones of public discourse as an ingenious iteration of inspiration — when the idea is really nothing more than visual vomit.  Today, I introduce you do the “Cloud Towers” — where Art-Meets-9/11-Terrorism-In-The-Sky in Seoul, South Korea:

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Reflecting on The Empire State Building and the Not Yet Rebuilt Twin Towers

For nearly two years, I looked with awe and admiration at the Empire State Building as I walked from Penn Station to my former office on 36th street. What a beautiful building, I thought to myself, and one that so many people call home for the duration of their work day. It is this very same home that people pass by and stare at from a distance, taking photos — countless photos, in most cases — and paying different amounts of money for tours around and on top of the building. The building top has been used as a destination in a number of movies, one of the most famous being Sleepless in Seattle, in which Tom Hanks meets Meg Ryan and they end up falling in love.

When you take the significance we have come to put on this building and how iconic it is in the New York City skyline, it is hard to not think of another set of buildings that were at one point also quite significant in the New York Skyline that were obliterated thanks to the heinous acts of 11 evil men who perpetrated An American tragedy. It has now been nearly ten years to the day that our beautiful Twin Towers were destroyed, and yet the rebuilt Towers will not be complete until at least the last quarter of 2013 — that’s over two years from now.

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The Forsaken God and the Dotted Dead

I previously wrote about the — Ground Zero Mosque — and the fact that the mosque in question is, and has been, an active worship center and that it stands three blocks away from where the Twin Towers fell.  The mosque is located in the old Burlington Coat Factory building, and the fact that it is still called “The Ground Zero Mosque,” instead of “The Old Burlington Coat Factory Building Mosque,” is wretched testimony to the disgusting incivility of the conservative media warmongers who prefer to kill their enemies from afar and directly berate those here at home who do not agree with their punishing politics while they celebrate religious bigots like Terry Jones who prefer to burn the Koran instead of saying a prayer.

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Is the Bayonne Teardrop Memorial Really a Vagina Dripping Sperm?

Sometimes a gift is best left unopened.  I was watching the first quarter of the NY Giants and Carolina Panthers football game today, when the telecast cut away to a live shot of the “Teardrop Memorial” — a 100-foot tall gift from Russia to the citizens of Bayonne, New Jersey — intended to memorialize the dead in the World Trade Center disaster.  The teardrop alone is 40 feet long!  However, to even an untrained eye, the monument looks more like a vagina dripping sperm, than a tear falling between torn twin towers.

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What Have We Recovered?

Learning is about recovering.  We are flooded with information and we struggled to analyze the important bits and store them in memory. Then, when the most precious moment arrives, we recover those precocious stored bits to save us from ourselves.  On
the awful anniversary of 9/11, we now must begin to ask — “What have
we recovered?” — in the steaming, soulless pit that used to be the
World Trade Center.

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