We are down. The refrain of change has faded or flared into anger. Life goes on, but that’s all it’s doing. The economy’s story is told in lines that keep wiggling down and to the right. It’s like we’re part of the entourage of a fading rapper, watching an energetic kid step into the cipher and knowing our man just can’t hack it anymore.
But today is the day we forget all that noise! We might be down. We might be out. We might have been cease-and-desisted by a powerful media conglomerate. But today, we’re back. We’re looking straight in the mirror, and fixing our makeup, and going out. Do call it a comeback.
Interpret it how you want. After all, comebacks are morally neutral. Disgraced politicians, the Taliban, and Whooping Cough have all come back. But beautiful babies have too, their little kumquat hearts restarting just in time.
You can come back from anything, even death. This is a hilobrow concept. Sports teams stage comebacks. Skirts stage comebacks. Ideas stage comebacks. Even Lassie. Lassie always comes back home again. It is all theater, in a way, with very specific requirements. The preconditions are forever the same: you have to lose before you can win; it has to vanish before it can return; you must have faith.
Maybe some comebacks don’t seem so serious to you. What is significant about a basketball team coming back from 16 points down in the fourth quarter to win? It reminds us to hope. What is meaingful about the fashionability of the length of a skirt? It’s in the mechanics. Inch by inch, we get to witness change. It may seem like you’re analyzing hem lines, but they are just a stripped down and convenient model for how the world happens.
And there’s another definition, too. (Your mama probably knows it.) Maybe one time, someone said something to you that was real mean, and as you stood there, stinging, the most perfect retort rose into your brain and flew out of your mouth. It landed flush, and your opponent was staggered. You walked away proud, even though you don’t like violence. There are those comebacks, too.About the only thing that unites all these things is that the best comeback is the least statistically probable. Comebacks are a reminder that weird stuff happens in the world! Norms are made to be deviated from.
In any case, we’re glad you’re here, whether you’re coming back to try again or are new to this game. The theme might be comeback, but for all the world’s eternal returns, every once in a while some genius puts something new out there. Maybe that’s you. We’re here in LA with the good people of GOOD Magazine, and we can’t wait to find out.