NY Times Trifecta: Future, Present, Past


Newspapers are such wonderful organizations. They are like huge mechanical writing machines, that create sets of articles with unintended synchronicities. Take, for example, this week-end's fare, neatly summarized by the staff here at Tropolism as Future, Present, Past:

(click continue reading for more)

Future: Official Plan to rebuild New Orleans won't limit residents to areas safe for human habitation, and safe from future hurricanes. It will let people choose to live in areas that are totally not fit for anyone to live in, and where there houses might be wiped out again at a moment's notice. The best part: once people choose where to live, then, a year later, they'll determine where to allocate city infrastructure. So, if you chose poorly, you may end up in the swamp, with no mortgage and no house. It's so close to being a plan. It's a banner opportunity for the city to break through it's racial politics and do what's best for everyone, long term.

Present: Mr. Ouroussoff puts down the crack pipe and writes some journalism about the push to save East Berlin's Palace of the Republic from demolition or historical recladding as the 19th century palace it replaced. Some interesting points here, particularly in relation to the crack pipe article we've labeled as 'Past' below. Mr. O distinguishes the difference between preservationists who only see really old buildings, and those younger of us who are free to see the really recent past as worthy of preservation, too. 2 Columbus Circle lovers, please note that the Germans aren't calling for the restoration of the interior of their 1976 building: they want it creatively reactivated.

Past: How fitting that Mr. Muschamp brings up the rear this weekend, and with a gay and lively article about 2 Columbus Circle that is sure to warm your maudlin heart, should you be so inclined. We put it under 'Past' not because Mr. Muschamp's confetti-like writing style cross-cuts us back to the gay 90s, but because the argument--the sixth or seventh one we could find, making its promising appearance in the fifth graph--belongs to the 'it's old and used to have a moment, so keep it as it is' pile. Speaking from a little experience in the matter (Tropolism means having been around the block a few times), queer spaces are always contingent, on the edges. They flourish and disappear. They do not cling to history, but to the present, and to life.


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