Last week’s New Yorker magazine included a series of letters written by Saul Bellow to other writers. I’ve often thought epistolary exchange between writers to be the most nettly of writing, both the most effusive and the most sincere, the most pretentious and the most vein-splittingly self-conscious. It’s hard
Oh, aren’t we lucky!? A double-bluffed, double-dipped, double-headed dose of Isaac Babel. When you’ve had a listen here and discover that you’re still running low on your recommended daily serving of Babel, you might head here to find a new recording of an old reading of another one.
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
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
For your bonus bedtime track this week, I’ve decided to double up on (I suppose?) relative abstrusity, author-wise. But this time, I’m in the fortunate position of already knowing and loving and potentially endlessly blathering about today’s subject, to prevent us all from hitting the high mile dudgeons ove
Do you know about Ben Hecht? I only ask because a lot of people don’t, and because as a responsible Purveyor of Fine Information I ought to clue you in, and in the interest of living up to such, I should tell you that Ben Hecht was best known to many as a screenwriter, that the same mind is to be held accountable (in some ways) for Hitchcock’s Notorious, His Girl Friday, Gone with the Wind, and Scarface, although largely in an uncredited stop-the-presses-who-can-fix-this capacity.
A few blocks down from my apartment is a utility pole, and on that utility pole someone has graffitoed the following in black marker:
“Romanse [sic] is the death of enlightenment”
All week I’ve been in the nether regions, the sticks, the country, the bucolic boonies, the hinterregions of the backwoods, fretting over how much I’d have to read to you upon my return, how many hours I’d have to try my larynx to make it up to you, just how many stories I’d have to penitently tell.