In the first place, it is true that I turned 40 this year, and it is equally true that, for the 40th time, my writing did not make it into the New Yorker’s “Forty Under Forty” issue, or Granta’s “Forty Under Forty” issue, or the LA Times’s “Forty Faces Under Forty” issue, or the Guardian’s annual “Forty American Writers Under Forty to Watch”, or even McSweeney’s “Forty Writers Under Forty Who Live Near Us in Brooklyn and We Hang Out With Quite a Bit or At Least Would Like To”. There are many reasons for that, not the least of which is that they are all shitty magazines dedicated to the death of writing and literature. Would I like to have been included? Of course. We all want external validation of our years of sweat and toil. But to suggest my exclusion from these lists in the last year of my eligibility for them somehow affected my judging of the Paradigm day school Three Under Three writing contest is not just baseless slander, it is armchair psychology of the very worst kind.