Middle Ages

Kids These Days

Like the darts Zink tosses in conversation and in writing (a friend’s novel “has weaknesses you could drive a truck through”), her life story feels exhilaratingly reckless: a childhood in tidewater Virginia with unspecified traumas; college at William & Mary followed by stints as a bricklayer, secretary, musician, and zine publisher; two doomed marriages, one to a poet in Tel Aviv; 16 unwed years in Germany; a Ph.D. in media studies from Tübingen; and a correspondence with fellow bird-watcher Jonathan Franzen that led circuitously to her current and possibly strangest phase: middle-aged enfant terrible.

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