John Gillis

The Idealist
January 13, 2011

The bomber carried balloons. They were silver and purple, and when he stepped inside the parking garage, they flitted and danced around his head—obscuring his face, as well as his intentions. It was October 2008, just after 4:30 on a Wednesday afternoon, and the workers in the office tower above the garage in suburban St. Louis were still at their desks. Only surveillance cameras saw the man with the balloons as he hurriedly walked to the parking space marked “654,” knelt down, and placed a wicker basket next to the driver’s side door of a late model Acura TL.

Jumble Jumble
July 25, 2005

Get Behind Me Satan (The White Stripes) Rock and roll has a quality of incompleteness that connects it to young adulthood. The music is formally underdeveloped. The lyrics do not need to hang together; the chords are not supposed to follow harmonic convention; the playing need not be precise; and if the singing is dead on pitch, it sounds wrong—that is, it sounds too right, too grown-up. Immanently unfinished, the music, like its audience, exists in a state of permanent adolescence, and carries an implicit critique of adult society’s esteem for maturity, effectuation, and refinement.