As I get older I find myself growing on the one hand much more flexible, more resilient, more inclined to take risks, and yet at the same time I can feel my interests and affections calcifying. My taste is turning pathological.
As opposed to wit, which is often just pedantic cruelty, more ingenious than funny, rarely instructive or heartening, aphorism is, historically, a manly form, laconic, from the Spartan polis of Laconia.
When Cage began experimenting with chance operations in the 1940s, he was looking for a means of stripping intention and taste from the process of creating art. In the Western world, our notion of “genius,” at least as it relates to artists and performers, is generally shaped by a psycho-historical method of decoding biography to discover the seed of ability.
If you believe the Times, and why not believe them, Google is developing everything from robot drones and driverless cars to a space elevator, which, so far as I can deduce, is a kind of hybrid, Wonkafied rocket-cum-slingshot.
In 1937, when Agee posted his list to the folks at Guggenheim, he was awe-struck, still a Southern boy in NYC , a writer entering maturity.