18 essays, 131 pages. Discussions on various topics including the metaphysics of free will, the contemporary threat of dehumanizing technologies, Charles Dickens, cycles of civilization, Blade Runner and its sequel, Franny and Zooey, criticisms of urbanization, Neuromancer's legacy, pricing economics, romanticism in film, and others.
Excerpt from Blossoming in Twilight: "In any normal garden, flowers compete with one another. That is what drives their beauty. Imagine a garden though after the sun has been extinguished. There will be no incentive to engage in long-term conflict; only immediate concerns will matter if anything matters. And this shared fate, the hopeless situation of these flowers, will be a vine between them of mutual understanding. The dying world, the crumbling empire, is almost like a burning museum that a crowd gathers around. Sure, each feels the loss, but a part of them is still glad that something has brought them together. Human beings need events to inspire conversation. In the absence of these they will resort to anything, even discussing the weather, and here the tragic gloom of this age provides a kind of shibboleth for the young. It’s the most relatable thing they all have. Whatever subculture they might belong to, however large the distance separating their respective countries, they can all reaffirm themselves in the digital company of total strangers by mantras gleaned from a global dystopian ooze. Quotes from popular streaming shows serve as a good example here. The more inane they are, the more passionately they are repeated, and orgies of this sort occur with frequent regularity in all forums of online discussion. It’s a way to keep the despair at a distance. Not that this always works. But it’s part of the culture now; a syncretic ritual integrated into the fabric of the youthful zeitgeist. Perhaps a doom chant as well."