Originally published at: https://pluralistic.net/2020/11/22/especially-cursed/
- An Especially Cursed House: Kate Wagner and the Fall of the House of Colt's Neck.
- This day in history: 2005, 2010, 2015, 2019
- Colophon: Recent publications, upcoming appearances, current writing projects, current reading
An Especially Cursed House (permalink)
The meat-and-potatoes of Kate Wagner's McMansion Hell is making extraordinarily hilarious architectural criticism out of utterly mediocre "luxury" homes. Anyone can find hilarity in a tacky monstrosity, but finding the humor in unimaginative status-displays takes real insight and skill.
When Wagner takes on an extraordinarily awful McMansion, it quickly becomes apparent that her focus on workaday bougie ugliness is all about the challenge – she plays boss-level because she's just TOO GOOD at the easy stuff.
Which brings me to the latest installment of McMansion Hell: "An Especially Cursed House": a $2.2m, 5,420 sqft 4 bed/4.5 bath house in Colt’s Neck, NJ. The viral listing had attracted plenty of dunks, but Wagner's treatment? ::chef's kiss::
The difference between an "eccentric collector" and a "hoarder" is money. This was driven home when William Gibson hipped me to Soane's Museum, a series of knocked-through Victorian houses filled with John Soane's vast, indiscriminate collections.
The current owned of Especially Cursed House makes Soane look like a piker, though. This is Madonna Inn-grade intensity, proof that nothing exceeds like excess.
I confess I actually secretly quite like the spectacular claustrophobic-Disneyland collection displays. For me, the horror didn't really kick in until we got to the living space.
And the real horror (as ever) lurks in the basement. Come for the "exercise room," stay for the art gallery.
This day in history (permalink)
#15yrsago Anti-game lawyer Jack Thompson loses right to practice law in Alabama https://arstechnica.com/uncategorized/2005/11/5613-2/
#15yrsago Giving EU air-passenger data to US DHS is illegal https://www.rte.ie/news/2005/1122/70024-eu/
#10yrsago German dog poo game for kids https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O6nmHzPCTdw
#5yrsago Activist tricked into 6-year relationship with undercover cop tells her storyhttps://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2015/nov/20/lisa-jones-girlfriend-of-undercover-police-office-mark-kennedy-interview
#1yrago The Labour manifesto: transformation of the welfare system, fair conditions for workers, universal housing, home care for elderly, fully funded NHS, fair taxes for the rich https://jacobinmag.com/2019/11/labour-party-manifesto-jeremy-corbyn/
#1yrago Lawyer’s long, weird sigfile setting out when and whether he’s willing to talk on the phone goes viral https://www.fitsnews.com/2019/10/30/is-this-the-worlds-most-self-important-email-signature/
#1yrago California’s housing bubble is spilling over into poor and exurban neighborhoods, creating waves of crises https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/21/us/california-housing-crisis-rent.html
Today's top sources:
Currently writing: My next novel, "The Lost Cause," a post-GND novel about truth and reconciliation. Friday's progress: 515 words (86836 total).
Currently reading: The Ministry for the Future, Kim Stanley Robinson
Latest podcast: Someone Comes to Town, Someone Leaves Town (part 23) https://craphound.com/podcast/2020/11/16/someone-comes-to-town-someone-leaves-town-part-23/
- Keynote, Cybersummit 2020, Nov 26 https://www.cybera.ca/cyber-summit-2020/
Keynote, Cologne Futures, Nov 27, http://medienpolitik.eu/
Beaverbrook Lecture: How to Destroy Surveillance Capitalism, Nov 30, https://www.mcgill.ca/maxbellschool/channels/event/2020-beaverbrook-annual-lecture-part-ii-cory-doctorow-325538
Teach-In Against Surveillance, Dec 1, https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/teach-in-against-surveillance-tickets-128926228821
Keynote, NISO Plus, Feb 22-25, https://niso.plus/cory-doctorow-to-keynote-at-niso-plus-2021/
- Talkingheadz Podcast:
Can Web 3 Help Democracy?
Fully Charged: The future of energy over the next 300 years
- "Attack Surface": The third Little Brother novel, a standalone technothriller for adults. The Washington Post called it "a political cyberthriller, vigorous, bold and savvy about the limits of revolution and resistance." Order signed, personalized copies from Dark Delicacies https://www.darkdel.com/store/p1840/Available_Now%3A_Attack_Surface.html
"How to Destroy Surveillance Capitalism": an anti-monopoly pamphlet analyzing the true harms of surveillance capitalism and proposing a solution. https://onezero.medium.com/how-to-destroy-surveillance-capitalism-8135e6744d59
"Little Brother/Homeland": A reissue omnibus edition with a new introduction by Edward Snowden: https://us.macmillan.com/books/9781250774583; personalized/signed copies here: https://www.darkdel.com/store/p1750/July%3A__Little_Brother_%26_Homeland.html
"Poesy the Monster Slayer" a picture book about monsters, bedtime, gender, and kicking ass. Order here: https://us.macmillan.com/books/9781626723627. Get a personalized, signed copy here: https://www.darkdel.com/store/p1562/_Poesy_the_Monster_Slayer.html.
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