Thursday, November 22, 2012
Thursday, November 15, 2012
Monday, November 12, 2012
The Prophet, one-sentence book review: If you're going to be psychologically terrorized, you might as well do it in a loving fictional depiction of Elyria, OH.
Why I took The Prophet off the shelf: #1. Michael Koryta lives in my hometown. Go familiarity, go! #2. Eye-level shelf positioning, a la expensive cans of peas. Go librarians, go! 3. Residual guilt over never having read, nor intending to read, Kahlil Gibran. Go intellectual torpor, go!
The Prophet haiku: Football is our God/Psychopaths are also here/two brothers wing it
Male characters, The Prophet: 27? Ran out of toes.
Female characters, The Prophet: 6. Some dead.
Male characters, demographic breakdown, The Prophet: Football players and/or psychopaths
Female characters, demographic breakdown, The Prophet: Three hot wives/hot girlfriends. Two deceased individuals. One drug addict. Some category overlap. Sex of snakes indeterminate.
Reading time, start to finish, with breaks, The Prophet: 8 hours.
Stuff I was supposed to get done during these 8 hours but didn't, The Prophet: Workshop planning, dinner preparation, leaf raking, vacuuming, returning-of-emails, more practicing, laundry.
Bad dreams, Post-Prophet: One. In hotel. Psychopaths/snakes/no one responding to my email. If email is re: snakes, ppl, pls respond!
The Prophet, Kahlil Gibran References: 0. Actually, how would I know? 0 plus double dose of guilt.
The Prophet, Hot or Not: Philip Seymour Hoffman.
The Prophet libation: Scotch. On the rocks. But with those stupid whiskey stones instead of ice. You'll drink it anyway.
Saturday, November 10, 2012
I've been watching Fox News.
This is true even though my politics are way more MSNBC. I read the New York Times daily, for Pete's sake (who is Pete, anyway?). I scan the Huffington Post and the Daily Kos. I'm an NPR supporter.
Nevertheless, I've been watching Fox News. And I've been doing so precisely because, to me, the outlet seems insane. The Atlantic recently featured a kick-ass piece on how right-wingers drank their own media koolade, which led to a straying from reality sufficiently serious that Romney's defeat was, to many conservatives, an out-and-out shock.
It made me think. About the blinders we don, the dangers of niche marketing, what is salable versus what is true.
It made me think that must be some pretty damn good koolade.
Fox News turns out to be utterly and immersively fascinating, on the order of documentaries that spirit you into the lives of the Amish, or disabled rugby players, or parking lot attendants. It's as if, without boarding an airplane or stepping into a car, I've managed to wake up on the other side of the world.
I recommend it without reservation. Fox may be (OK, is) maddening, but watching it reminds me -as we increasingly, desperately need to be reminded- that there are many ways of looking at a blackbird.
Yes, some of those blackbirds might have horns and polka dots. But for every horned, polka-dotted blackbird on TV, somewhere there sits a man with binoculars waiting for a speckled, fierce-tusked creature to wing through his window and fang its way into the sky of his nose.
Worth a gander, no?