Regular readers of OTLSS may recall Adam Lamparello, whose "snotty poor-little-me memoir about his disillusionment with practicing law, hookers, cocaine, his church, his frat, his girlfriends, and his alleged eating disorder" was featured here six years ago. He was one of the most, er, renowned professors at the late and unlamented Indiana Tech Law School. What he is doing now I cannot say, though I have information on two of his former colleagues, for anyone who cares to know: Peter Alexander is now "Interim Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Visiting Professor of Law" at the notorious über-toilet law school of the University of North Texas, and André Douglas "Dougie Fresh" Pond Cummings—now with capital letters!—has a new position at private über-toilet St Thomas University.
The name Lamparello was recently in the news: just days after the fire at Notre-Dame in Paris, a Marc Lamparello was arrested and charged with second-degree attempted arson, second-degree reckless endangerment, and trespassing for going into midtown Manhattan's famous St Patrick's Cathedral with two jerry cans of gasoline, two bottles of charcoal-lighting fluid, and two long-handled butane lighters. It turns out that he was also about to leave for Rome on a "one-way ticket" that had cost him $2800. Unless he was in first class, he paid an awful lot. Probably he bought the ticket at the last minute. Since the items that he was carrying upon arrest are not allowed on airplanes, presumably he planned to stop at a Roman gas station on his way from the airport to St Peter's Basilica.
It seems that Marc Lamparello and Adam Lamparello are brothers. Adam made typically asinine statements to the press about this incident, and both Adam and Marc live in the small town of Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey. But they have more in common: both of them have a theoretical claim to being professors. Marc is listed on a book as "a Boston College-educated philosophy professor", though he has no PhD (that's in the works at CUNY). Apparently the "philosophy professor" has merely taught a couple of courses as an adjunct at a few institutions in the general vicinity of New York City.
Also, the brothers Lamparello share a penchant for self-promotional scribbling. Marc may not yet have discovered the advantages of tell-all vulgar memoirs but "is currently working on two other book-length projects, including a witty dialogue on arguments for and against the existence of God, and a series of essays on the epistemology of practical motivation". The "witty dialogue" reminds me of the sickening "Rodrigo chronicles" that come out of the ass of hackademic poseur Richard Delgado. As for "practical motivation", I don't even know what it is. Is it contrasted with impractical motivation?
Marc Lamparello has published a book, Reason and Counterpoint. "Presented in the form of aphorisms and paragraph-length insights"—prime vehicles for serious philosophical discourse—the book asks "What is the nature of the a priori?". (That it is a priori.) Also, "Can we really rely on our own cognitive architecture in distilling the nature of moral-practical motivation?" (If we can't rely on our own cognitive architecture, then on what, exactly, shall we rely? Coin tosses?)
In any event, Daddy is awfully proud of dear Marc: "His writings — other professors can’t even understand his writings." That's because they're shite, idiot. What's the use of incomprehensible writing?
Marc and Adam also share a certain self-image that might remind one of Narcissus. The article reports that Marc "Lamparello is a frequent poster on the Reddit community 'AmIUgly,' where users ask for their appearance to be rated. In recent years, Lamparello has replied to dozens of women with critiques." What sort of person would frequent a Web site for people who are concerned about being perceived as ugly? and send dozens of women critiques of their appearance? Last August he wrote "I’m going through a phase. After not giving a shit about my appearance for 20 years, I’ve swung in the opposite direction. Now, I’m very vain and appearance-obsessed." I don't ordinarily think ill of other people's appearance, but after reading that I had to look at his pictures again. For someone who is "very vain" (nice that he admits it) "and appearance-obsessed", he certainly has far to go. That bushy beard only accentuates the receded hairline. Decent clothes, instead of those tatty-ass T-shirts, would also help.
Apparently with no success at all, Marc has been "going for in-shape women who are a little attractive, and have a few nice features". Assessing people as "attractive" or "nice" solely by their appearance is terribly shallow—not what one would expect of a brilliant philosopher. Pathetically, Marc seeks the solution to his problems in plastic surgery: he is saving his pennies for procedures that will take him "from a 4/10 to a 7.2-7.3/10". He'd do better to keep his money and address his wretched personality. He published the following: "All I know is, if the French dislike us for something, we must be doing something right. They think they’re so much more sophisticated and culturally alluring than us. But secretly, they’re jealous of us and want to be us. Never forget that, fellow Americans." Yes, that's straight from the pen of sophisticated, culturally alluring Marc Lamparello.
Back to the scene of the crime. When Marc was caught in flagrante delicto (I couldn't resist the pun), he had parked his minivan in front of Saks Fifth Avenue. I'm not aware of any legal parking along Fifth Avenue at that busy location. The vehicle would have been towed quickly enough, but apparently Marc didn't intend to stay long. Anyway, in statements to the police (didn't his brother Adam, allegedly a great lawyer, advise him against making a statement?), Marc claimed that the vehicle had run out of gas and that he was merely cutting through the cathedral in order to get to Madison Avenue. Now, how much sense does that make? His vehicle was found not to be out of gas after all. He had taken two jerry cans of gasoline out of his vehicle and was taking them elsewhere. Why didn't he pour the gasoline into the tank, if that was the issue? Why was he going to Madison Avenue? Not to get gas: there is no gas station on the island of Manhattan within dozens of blocks. Is it even possible for the general public to cut through the cathedral in order to go between Fifth and Madison? Who the hell would do that rather than walking, say, along 50th Street? Especially with hands full of inflammable materials, just days after a fire at another cathedral. And why was he carrying fuel inside a vehicle? Not smart.
The police have nonetheless reported that "[i]t's hard to say what exactly his intentions were". Oh, come on! In the wake of that fire at Notre-Dame, he walked into a cathedral heavily laden with jerry cans of gasoline, bottles of charcoal-lighter fluid, and long-handled lighters (two of each—maybe he was playing Noah's Ark). What could his intentions have been, if not to burn the building down? To replenish the church's generator and then grill some hot dogs on the altar? Without wishing to convict him on the strength of the story given here, I find it hard to see a source of reasonable doubt about attempted arson.
Perhaps the police meant that they could not immediately tell whether Marc Lamparello was driven by malevolence or psychosis. I certainly cannot comment on that. One thing is clear, though: the Lamparellos of Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey, never fail to surprise.