The Algonquin Kids' Table
This Issue: 2003 Top Ten Lists
Most of the contributors to The High Hat first
met gathered around that 21st century oracle, l'Internet. More specifically,
in one or more of the various message boards that make up some of
the many curious, quaint little villages to be found along the Information
Superhighway (and what a strange, pothole-ridden, wreckage-dusted
stretch of road that's proven to be, eh?). Message boards are funny
little entities (as anyone with even a passing acquaintance with
them - which is probably most of our readership - can attest). At
their worst, they are mere repositories for frustrated, lonely miscreants
to toss vile, misspelled imprecations and obscene emoticons at one
another, safely carrying on virtual class(less) warfare from behind
a firewall of faceless anonymity. At their best, however - and herein
lies their insidious, addictive power - they can be vibrant party
lines where some of the finest, wittiest and most articulate individuals
you could ever hope to meet (not that you wind up meeting most of
them) come together to exchange information, opinion and one-liners,
as educational, entertaining and ultimately life-enriching an experience
as anyone can imagine. (At least anyone who spends far too much
time staring at a monitor every day. And never mind that the frustrated,
lonely miscreants and the fine, witty and articulate individuals
are occasionally the same people.) The group assembled on this online
spot are, we think you'll agree, highly skilled at composing discrete
pieces, reviews and interviews, the usual staples of this kind of
enterprise. But throw them into the fast-paced, give-and-take environs
of a message board and you wind up with something unique that even
the best-written articles can't quite approximate. The Algonquin
Kids' Table is an attempt to capture some of that flavor, albeit
in slightly more sterile surroundings. An experiment, in other words.
And as such, it might fail miserably. It will be regularly updated,
but not quite in real time; a venue for more personal and casual
conversation than usual, but still subject to (hopefully minor,
if any) editing; a fairly freewheeling arena with, as yet, a very
small guest list. All of which could conceivably kill off what makes
that particular form of movable verbal feast often so sumptous.
But we figure it's worth a shot. It's something to do. Hey, how
much did you pay to get in here, anyway?
Two words: McChesney
Duntz. Why do the rest of us even bother?
-------------->More exciting ruminations on Page Two!