Malibu, hold the RumI have not much to say ("I won't say much of anything at all") except that parking on the side of the road in Malibu at night is lush. It gets kicked up a notch with your car door open allowing a much neglected CD's music to reach its way to you, cut only by the swish of the ocean and of tires pummeling the road at your back, while a half-full moon glowing red on the horizon creeps lower, toward its own reflection, and a canopy of stars acts as awning (pin pricks showing the light of the heavens). Add a twist of a friend and you have something truly delectable.
A totally unrelated thing: An article on plagerism in the NYT. Interesting excerpts below:
While 10 percent of college students admitted to Internet plagiarism in 1999, that number rose to around 40 percent in 2003, Donald L. McCabe, the founder of the Center for Academic Integrity (C.A.I.) at Duke University, said in a telephone interview.
Surprise: the prewritten paper, on the idea of the hero in ''Gatsby'' (''What is a hero?'' it begins, and later: ''Muscles do not make a hero''), coming in at a reasonable $35, was terrible. The sentences run on, as in this clunker: ''Moreover, the fortune that Gatsby did amount was gained through criminal activities as he had experienced the finer things in life and wished to have a better social position, again he knew that this could only be gained through the status of wealth, in this way Gatsby sought to win the heart of the woman he had fallen in love with, Daisy.'' Faux-elegant words like ''whilst'' butt up against the jarringly conversational: ''Then Nick the narrator discovers who he is bang goes his secret.'' Bang! The paper becomes increasingly sloppy, mimicking the writing patterns of a tired and confused freshman. Maybe this is the point.
Another surprise: the custom-written paper, delivered in three days for $180, a tenth of a community college's annual tuition or the weekend allowance of a wealthy Ivy Leaguer, was a decent piece of work. One passage that probably few undergraduates could dream up even on a good day, after a couple of writing workshops, reads: ''Those who go from rags to riches don't find nirvana or some special land where they are immediately happy, content and removed from earthly worries. They, like Gatsby, find that the reality is that the world is still ugly . . . and that money and power just allow one to ignore those dichotomies a little bit easier.''