March 17, 2005

"Jose Canseco, Hero"

"Jose Canseco, Hero" -- Novelist Michael Chabon, author of The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay, expends 1,900 words on the NYT op-ed page to explain his hero worship of the ballplayer (whom a player's agent told me twelve years ago was "the Typhoid Mary of steroids"), without it ever occurring to Chabon that the reason he admires Canseco so much is precisely because Jose was loaded with synthetic masculine hormones.

While Chabon is more eloquent, his feelings are the same as those rhesus macaque monkeys who pay (in juice) to look at pictures of dominant male monkeys.

I used to think Chabon was dishonest. His novel about two Jewish teenagers in pre-WWII New York who invent a Superman-style character to express their opposition to Hitler, avoids all mention of the Hitler-Stalin pact of 1939-1941, which caused no end of conflict at the time of the novel in the Jewish Communist circles the story is set in, but is most conveniently forgotten today for purposes of demonizing McCarthyism. Chabon's novel also features another pet peeve of mine, the character who turns out to be homosexual despite having no traits at all that correlate with homosexuality.

But, perhaps I was wrong. Judging from this essay, Chabon, despite being wildly articulate, has no more self-awareness than those hero-worshipping monkeys.

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