meta-creation_date: November 3, 2003 Extend a line from Parkinson through Oprah and Jerry Springer. Now, produce it in an historical direction along the same plane as far as the 1760’s. With what figure does it intersect, if not Boswell’s Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides? bq. “I love anecdotes. I fancy mankind may come, in time, to write all aphoristically, except in narrative; grow weary of preparation, and connection, and illustration, and all those arts by which a big book is made. If a man is to wait till he weaves anecdotes into a system, we may be long in getting them, and get but a few, in comparison of what we might get.” He’s being devious, of course… his art lies in the subtle tapestries of connection and illustration into which he wove his anecdotes after many years of reflection. But it’s a confession, all the same. The delay does result in fewer anecdotes: not from forgetfulness but from selection.