Feathers

Oh ladies! Oh men and oh boys and girls, the sexiest man alive is BACK. Patrick has been threatening to start up Patrick’s Bedtime Story Podcast, and with a voice this smooth, he might have to do it, much as I’d miss his occasional guest posts here. I’ll warn you that there’s an outburst of laughter in the middle of this that I didn’t have the heart to cut out, and also that he does a killer bird caw, and that Olla’s voice is a little on the saccharinely fey side. It’s that good.

Hollow

Breece D’J Pancake was brought to my attention only a couple of years ago, one of those writers who didn’t leave a whole lot left behind for us to gluttonously swallow, and one who was willing to grab the short story by the balls of its form and steer it where he wanted.

In his forward to the collection of Pancake’s stories, James Alan McPherson quotes from a letter he received from Pancake:

A Game of Catch

It’s always a little weird to me to read a sports story, with idioms like “burning one in” that are just so far removed from my patois that I can barely even get my mouth to go in that direction. And it’s equally odd to try and project teenage boy-speak, because it’s been quite a while since I’ve taken an interest in the mannerisms of teenage boys. But it’s springtime, and nothing’s more appropriate than boys and baseball. So here’s a little bit of both, no matter how much “burning one in” seems like the last thing you want a teenage boy to do.

It Was

I was sitting here eating little sugary hearts with terms of endearment printed on them. They’re pretty popular with the young people, and surely you must know them: cheap things, sort of disgusting in the way that totally fructosified food product is, but sort of terrific for the same reason. And besides, they’re candied hearts, … Read more

The Hyannis Port Story

I was talking to the resident genius here about false memories and the publishment thereof, when an idea emerged, an idea with such potential for industry salvation that there’s no choice but to document it here, in the interest of knowledge open-sourcing, or whatever. The idea involved all these made-up memoirs floating about these days, … Read more

Raymond’s Run

A disclaimer: the Wiki says that tonight’s story is… how to put this… Big in Middle School Circles. But don’t let that put you off (especially if you yourself run in Middle School Circles, or are Big therein). I can be as big of an arrogant elitist as the next lady when it comes to … Read more

In Dreams Begin Responsibilities

Well, pilgrims. It’s that day once again when the poisoned blankets of history are celebrated with turkey and squash. And I want to get all excited with you about Delmore Schwartz, and rave a while about how you should be able to listen to the rhythm of his narrative with an almost painful wistfulness for … Read more

To the Open Water

As I noted in the whole wide verbal megillah setting up tonight’s reading, I’m taking great issue with the Wikipedia entry on tonight’s author. Here, again, is the first sentence, with my call to fix it: Jesse Hill Ford (December 28, 1928 – June 1, 1996) was an American writer of Southern literature who produced … Read more

The Spring

But in order to be mad scientists, first we had to learn how to be normal scientists. It’s funny, imagining John Fahey sitting in a hotel rampantly scrawling. Not because he’s so otherwise voiceless, or should relegate his expressiveness to the steel-stringed style, or other reasons fascistic or idiotic. He’s just one of those guys … Read more

Show-and-Tell

In the two days since first reading of tonight’s story, I’ve been deeply ensconced with this idea of show-and-tell, to the irrational (read: batshit) point of showing-and-telling the objects comprising the contents of my desk to the various beasts kicking about the place, or showing-and-telling one runty waterlogged piece of the garden to another. And … Read more