An established experimental poet—the kind that comes with a beard and a fear of proper capitalization—was heard recently to denounce video art as “arty farty stuff.” As a writer and sometime video artist myself, I like to think of the two disciplines driving on the same motocross track, kicking up dust and heading for a glorious collision. Such a collision can be witnessed in all its elegance in Everybody Loves Nothing (Coach House), a collection of scripts by the Canadian video artist Steve Reinke. Anyone familiar with Reinke’s dark, sad, hilarious, impossibly human video works won’t be frightened off by either “video art” or “collected scripts.” Everyone else can rest assured that the back cover declaration, “This book about video is ultimately a book about words,” is accurate. Reinke’s scripts are monologues that play like Woody Allen defending himself in Kafka’s courtroom and often mix appropriated text with travelogues. “Living in Los Angeles is like being on vacation—or in a coma,” he writes. “I don’t really like it, but I never want to leave. I’ve only had one idea since I’ve been here, and that was to videotape a cake in the rain in MacArthur Park. But it’s only rained once, softly in the night, and I was asleep and dreaming of snow.” With an endless supply of dolorous bon mots, Everybody Loves Nothing proves that misanthropes may be the only effective humanists left.