Jenny Burman Jenny Burman
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Babcock: Soundboard listened wrong*

A lot of ire (some of it funny) was raised when Soundboard ran an interview with Jay Babcock on his move from Los Angeles to Brooklyn. Babcock used terms like "psychic death hole" to describe Los Angeles -- or "Carusoland," depending on your interpretation. To the L.A. Times reporter at Soundboard, and to me, Babcock seemed to be saying he was leaving L.A. because he, uh, didn't like it here anymore. What he wrote to me, at least, was pretty sour on the subject of Los Angeles. But I was sincere in writing that Brooklyn's gain is our loss. Babcock's Arthur is a great publication, and Babcock's Nature Trumps was a great blog, which may have helped in the river-preservation/park creation efforts of people who remain in Los Angeles. He has done good here, not harm, and some spouting about things "devolving" in the city doesn't erase it. I was also sincere in mocking the term psychic death hole. But that was too easy.

So Soundboard's message board was all lit up with offense taken (154 comments) -- so were other sites -- and Babcock has not traveled so far away that it didn't sting, badly. He has written postdates on Arthur online and to Soundboard. He also sent me a letter describing his feelings on having his feelings misinterpreted vis a vis the City of Angels.

*Postscript: I posted that letter, but Babcock wrote to me, asking that I take it down, which I did.

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