But reading through the old Consumer Guides brings all kinds of pleasure and edification. The run of Prince Consumer Guide pieces is as good an overview as I've seen of his career—a book's worth of revelations delivered in 1,700 words—and Christgau's kicker to his review of Prince's breakthrough album Dirty Mind may be the funniest line ever written by a rock critic: "Mick Jagger should fold up his penis and go home."
For now, Christgau is job hunting. He teaches a course at NYU, and, who knows, he may end up with an academic job. But I hope he still finds time to review records. In an e-mail a couple of days ago, Christgau told me, "I want to continue the Consumer Guide, am getting ready to write up the underrated new OutKast album." I'd like to read that column, and I'm reasonably sure I will. Christgau's clip file shows great promise—there's got to be a couple of editors in this town ready to do themselves and the rest of us a favor and give the kid a gig.