Love Letter to The New Yorker MAG

October 14, 2008
By Michael B., White Plains, NY, White Plains, NY

For the past three years nothing in my life has remained the same for long; hair grows and then is cut to a new style, girls come and go, seasons change, my ever-fluctuating math and science grades keep me busy, and people die. The only thing that has not changed is a hundred or so pages of highly critical film reviews, literary excerpts, and ostensibly esoteric world news.

I am talking, of course, about The New Yorker. Over the years it has provided me with a great and intangible inner warmth that remains throughout the week and kisses the following Monday’s arrival of the next issue. But The New Yorker provides me with much more than intellectual solace and general comfort; it grounds me as a person and provides a door to the world.

I have lived in the same mundane suburb my whole life. It reeks of a sweeping uniformity of bourgeois, bored housewives, hedge-fund CEOs, and preppy, wealthy children. It is stifling and numbing. I live in a society where details of Britney Spears’ latest breakdown are held in greater regard than, say, the knowledge of the oeuvres of Magritte and Camus.

So then, put yourself in my position; you come home from a day filled with the challenges of high school, compounded by a dual curriculum and hard work. You find the sleek New Yorker lying on your desk with a monocled nineteenth century aristocrat in a top hat on the cover. You open to the table of contents and discover an excerpt of Ha Jin’s new novel, an article on Godard’s relationship with Truffaut, and an op-ed on Russia’s current political climate. Your universe of BlackBerrys and Gucci handbags dissipates like smoke and you enter a world of culture, knowledge, and comfort.

The New Yorker to me is more than a magazine to pass the time between the SAT tutor and some other tedious but necessary activity. Slowly over the years, it has ingrained itself into my everyday schedule, influencing the way I think and perceive. The world around me has increased tenfold. It takes me from the cultural purgatory that is my habitat to a cultural nexus of world politics and a potpourri of interesting things.

Above all, The New Yorker gives me a feeling that I am part of a group of clandestine intelligentsia (without any intention of elitism) that takes me away from my uninspired and tepid twenty-first century suburban environment.


The author's comments:
This is an essay telling a little bit about myself and something that I guess one could call my 'muse'.

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This article has 9 comments.


on Jul. 10 2015 at 11:08 pm
Avery Balnis BRONZE, Mount Pleasant, South Carolina
1 article 0 photos 1 comment
This is amazing!

on Jun. 15 2010 at 9:05 am
writerofmusic SILVER, Eaton, Colorado
6 articles 0 photos 14 comments

Favorite Quote:
\"The role of a writer is not to say what we all can say, but what we are unable to say.\" ~Anaïs Nin

I love it!

 


Emmalee SILVER said...
on Jan. 12 2010 at 2:50 pm
Emmalee SILVER, Rayville, Louisiana
9 articles 14 photos 65 comments

Favorite Quote:
Life is what happens when you're busy making other plans. - John Lennon

Wonderful. :)

krzecourt said...
on Dec. 24 2009 at 11:01 am
This is an excellent article. You are a very intelligent young man and I am pretty sure that you will be a CEO, philanthropist or even the next President. The New Yorker magazine is the best source of knowledge out there and you clearly get that. As someone who works in that industry, I applaud your wordy essay and thrist for knowledge! Bravo.

and such said...
on Nov. 29 2009 at 4:58 pm
i'm the author of this article. i wrote this years ago and submitted it solely for the sake of padding my resumé, a purpose it quite fulfilled. i agree with you very much, reading this article now, I cannot succeed in stifling the nausea that comes to my throat. With that being said this article was not written for publication at all. Being viewed in the context of a personal exposé, this piece reads less offensive. in any case, I was a 14 year old hermetically sealed in a strange place that made little sense to me. I'm not sure if the 'place' I mention is a physical location or an intangible epoch (most likely a combination of the two), but TNY magazine helped me. If even expressed through the mouth of something of a child who felt he was stumbling upon something untouched, something really special, etc etc. I understand your words and have even adopted some of your views on my earlier writings in the past and the present and no doubt the future as well. Thanks and such,

on Nov. 5 2009 at 3:38 pm
[polemics]
You share nice details, and those details are well detailed. Even still, your writing is evidently indulgent. Grandiose? Self-absorbed. Yes, that, too. You can choose your essay's self-describing near-synonym yourself.
Surely, though, whether you intended that I Debbie-Downeringly interpret your writing this way or not, the language you use in this essay suggests you think you abide by a higher code of culture and sophistication than your paisanos.
This may be true. It also may not be. Of course, you're bound to have difficulty finding corroborating evidence to suggest that you do not feel the ways I say you might feel. Surely, though, absence of proof is not proof of absence.
My advice (if you care, which I don't imagine you would... or necessarily even should): Reevaluate your definition of open-mindedness. My assumption is this: You are less open-minded than you care to admit. As am I. As are all human beings.
Self-awareness, you may find, is paramount. Introspect, my brother. Introspect. Find your flaws in your dreams and eat them for breakfast daily.
[/my polemics]
[my apologies]
Sorry, for being a rainy day douchebag . I did like portions of your essay, to be sure. Bits of it touched on universalities, even.
Keep writing, then. You'll improve.
[/my apologies]

Lalala10 said...
on Sep. 24 2009 at 9:39 pm
very, very awesome. somehow you pulled off complex vocabulary without sounding wordy. i love everything about this essay; i hope you used it to get into the college of your dreams!

on Aug. 24 2009 at 10:36 am
phoebe-bird SILVER, Shanghai, Other
7 articles 2 photos 8 comments
I love The New Yorker and definitely love your essay. I certainly see a thinker from this essay.

Martybluedog said...
on Aug. 23 2009 at 1:55 pm
After reading this essay I smiled because my daughter wrote a similiar essay 5 years ago when she was entering college. She LOVED the "New Yorker." It was her first subscription to a magazine with articles that she loved to read. She continues to read this magazine along with "Harpers, Paris Review etc" She has finished college and moved to New York but unfortunatley she has been unable to find a steady job so she is currently in the process of moving back home and applying to grad school. Her essay got her into school. Your essay is great.

Now our 3rd child is writing her essay and I wanted to read her essay and others to determine if it is acceptable. Good luck in your search.




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