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I was wondering yesterday if I’ll ever mosh again. Or, more to the point, if we’ll ever mosh again. Will the pit ever open UP? By the time the pit does OPEN UP, will my old frail bones (and fully developed mind) be comfortable colliding with the youths at some half-assed punk show? (Do I have to do the thing where I go, “Obviously this is low priority”?) Ahem: Obviously this is low priority.

But I was thinking this was because I don’t—and never did—really like moshing. I wouldn’t choose it. It often happened, and I was there, and then you’re moshing. A lot of going to live shows was basically like this—a collection of not good but very fun stuff: your favorite artist reduced to the quality of LOUD; new friend, call him stranger A, sweating on you; paying $7 for a beer that tastes like plastic.

Do you miss that too?

If so, I’ve been finding a balm in scratchy live performances of artists I like. I find in them a dose of the unexpected. And, as I live increasingly online, I find in them a respite from ill-fitting perfection in the optimized spaces I traverse digitally.

One of my favorites for this is Ryley Walker—an artist who uploads a ton to Patreon. You can pay a few bucks and join me. I’ve enjoyed “Live at Shibuya 7th Floor, Tokyo, Japan” and “Live in Paris @ Mona Bismarck American Center June 1 2017.” Walker interlaces his songs, sometimes long acoustic riffs, with chitchat that I find amusing. It’s nice to hear a human, you know?

Or you can listen to a few examples of Bob Dylan singing terribly, which I enjoy. Here’s “Pancho and Lefty,” and this concert from 1984 has horrific quality, and he just stops playing a song at 19 minutes for no reason. Great. I don’t want to be fully pleased at the moment. For me, there’s a certain cheeriness in seeking out the random and slightly broken but tolerable.

That’s the good news I got for you. Sorry, the real news is…hard to mine at the moment.

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REAL QUICK, REAL URGENT

Minority rule, corruption, disinformation, attacks on those who dare tell the truth: There is a direct line from what's happening in Russia and Ukraine to what's happening here at home. And that's what MoJo's Monika Bauerlein writes about in "Their Fight Is Our Fight" to unpack the information war we find ourselves in and share a few examples to show why the power of independent, reader-supported journalism is such a threat to authoritarians.

Corrupt leaders the world over can (and will) try to shut down the truth, but when the truth has millions of people on its side, you can't keep it down for good. And there's no more powerful or urgent argument for your support of Mother Jones' journalism right now than that. We need to raise about $450,000 to hit our online fundraising budget in these next few months, so please read more from Monika and pitch in if you can.

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