Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Fun with Litany

The recent NYTimes Best Book of the Past 25 Years List, the Fortune 500 list, the Rolling Stone Greatest Albums of All Time list, the Forbes Most Powerful List: we are some list-loving muthafuckers. And why wouldn't we? Lists organize, validate, and reaffirm. They often provide what exposition cannot: order, comfort, and a sense of exhaustive, definitive inclusion.

But on the other hand, there is something inherently ridiculous about listing things. Which brings me to my first and probably last installment of "Fun with Litany."

It's the ideal game for a list-loving culture. I try to think of a string of things, words, proper nouns that, just by their sound and placement in sequence, are ridiculous. That's all. I wouldn't call it "free association" because it's not done unconsciously. There shouldn't be any underlying logic or connective tissue between them, as with Johnny Carson's old Carnac bit.

Here. Why don't I just show you what I'm talking about. Today's list:

1. Macadamia Nuts
2. Koko, the talking gorilla
3. Greg Louganis
4. His Holiness the Dalai Lama
5. Natuzzi Leather
6. C. & C. Music Factory
7. Touched By An Angel, Starring Roma Downey
8. Chicken Noodle Soup
9. Treasure
10. Wall-to-Wall Capreting
11. Ice

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