Remember zines? Before there was McSweeneys, before "A Staggering Work of Hearbreaking Genius," before The Believer, and so many other Dave Eggers projects, there was Might magazine, which could be found in certain obscure zine shops in the East Village (at least, that's where I found it). I still have most of the full run of Might in a box somewhere, but this 1998 paperback collects the best of its snarky Spy Lite vision. Eggers, the editor, was such an unknown at that point that his name appears nowhere on the cover, though there is an essay in here by him about the F word. Getting top billing is an essay by David Foster Wallace that I had completely forgotten until I just looked closely at this for the first time in a dozen years: "Hail the Returning Dragon, Clothed in New Fire," which tries to look on the bright side of AIDS. Yes, really. Also in here: Ted Rall's "College Is for Suckers." A piece by R.U. Sirius and another by the frontman for Soul Coughing, a band I barely remember. It's a strange little time capsule from the eve of the Internet age.

     This Old Book started as a Tumblr, which is also archived on These are books that have survived many purges from my shelves over decades, with a few comments attempting to figure out why I have held onto them.