As longtime readers of this column know, one day in the future, historians will slug it out in faculty lounges all over the country over the question of whether "David Brooks" was a completely fictional character, or whether he was a pseudonym for a whole passel of awful writers who wanted to avoid public shunning for blabbing their stupid opinions in print (from me in 2013 "In Search of Historic Bobo"):
...And as the original events have been sifted and re-sifted by popular culture, fan fiction and hermeneutics, the academic world has more-or-less evenly divided itself into two, irreconcilable orthodoxies -- the Historical Brooks versus the Fictional Brooks -- each of which finds strong support for its own theory in the literature itself.Based on the radically divergent accounts of writings attributed to him during a single decade, roughly half of all professional media historians -- The Historicals -- subscribe to theory that "David Brooks" in an amalgamation of several real but wildly different people. The other half -- The Fictionals -- maintain that since so much of what he was alleged to have written was so obviously false and absurd, "David Brooks" had to be a literary contrivance: something analogous to Poe's nameless recounter of "The Telltale Heart" or Greta Van Sustern -- a fictional narrator whose own pathological unreliability is integral to the story....
However all future historians will probably agree that maudlin, post-divorce, barely-sublimated "You Picked a Fine Time to Leave Me Lucille" David Brooks was the most entertaining David Brooks of all.
Mr. Brooks begins his internet porn shame fiction as follows:
Intimacy for the AvoidantDavid Brooks OCT. 7, 2016
Go for it, David!
All of this has left people wondering if technology is making us lonelier. Instead of going over to the neighbor’s house, are we sitting at home depressingly surfing everybody else’s perfect lives on Facebook?
David Brooks is lonely.
But recently, people’s views of social media have grown a bit darker. That’s because we seem to be hitting some sort of saturation level.
David Brooks also can't stop masturbating to free internet porn.
A decade ago almost no one had a smartphone. Now the average American...
David Brooks can't put his god damn phone down long enough to write a god damn decent column. Thanks Obama!
As Stephen Marche put it in The Atlantic in 2012...Earlier this year, Jacob Weisberg had a fine essay in The New York Review of Books...A study of female students at Baylor University...Last month, Andrew Sullivan published a moving and much-discussed essay in New York magazine...As Louis C.K. put it in a TV appearance...When Montaigne was describing the accumulating intimacy he enjoyed with his best friend, he described an emotional interaction...
David Brooks has many assistants who will pull quotes for him, and don't forget that thingie by Andrew Sullivan!
You can have a day of happy touch points without any of the scary revelations, or the boring, awkward or uncontrollable moments that constitute actual intimacy.
David Brooks used to refer to masturbation as "Burke-ing", "Walkin' The Buckley", "Operation Enduring Boner" and "Reaganomic". Now he refers to masturbation as "happy touch points". I guess it makes him more relatable to the Imaginary Millennials who are constantly telling him what's really going on off-campus,
When we’re addicted to online life, every moment is fun and diverting, but the whole thing is profoundly unsatisfying.
Sometimes after "happy touch point" time David Brooks feels bad.
I guess a modern version of heroism is regaining control of social impulses, saying no to a thousand shallow contacts for the sake of a few daring plunges.
For David Brooks, giving up "happy touch point" time for a long weekend is pretty much the same as "storming the beaches at Normandy".
Which coincidentally is also one of the many slang terms Mr. Brooks has used over the years for "happy touch point" time.