Who Speaks for No One?

In the final chapter of his ground-breaking (for popular Science) book Cosmos, Carl Sagan asks Who Speaks for Earth, where he (if I recall correctly) wonders who indeed will speak for earth if a dispassionate extraterrestrial observer were to question our inane wars, and destruction. The title of the post is inspired from that, however it has no such noble aims. Quite the opposite.

Yesterday I posted about blogging in the absence of (quantitatively significant) reader base. Today, I read this (bold emphasis mine …)

Well, maybe [it] wasn’t for everyone. But didn’t everyone get everything? Hadn’t they had enough yet? Everything on earth is tailored for this everyone. Everyone gets all the TV programs, as near as dammit all of the cinema, and about eighty percent of all music. After that come the secondary mediums of painting and those other visual arts that do not move. These are generally just for someone, and although you always hear people moaning that there isn’t enough of them, in truth someone does all right. Galleries, museums, basements in Berlin, studio flats, journals, bare walls in urban centers—someone gets what they want and deserve, most of the time. But where are the things that no one wants? Every now and then Alex would see or hear something that appeared to be for no one but soon enough turned out to be for someone and, after a certain amount of advertising revenue had been spent, would explode into the world for everyone. Who was left to make stuff for no one? Just Alex. Only he.

That’s from the brilliant Zadie Smith’s last unread (by me, but not for long) novel Autograph Man. That’s the anti-Christ . And he is coming!

PS: old you it won’t be pretty!


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