Sunday, June 28, 2009

sunday short stack

"Until you've lost your reputation, you never realize what a burden it was." - Margaret Mitchell

Saturday, June 27, 2009

you can't go up against assassination

The Eclipsed Celebrity Death Club:

The championship trophy for badly timed death, though, goes to a pair of British writers. Aldous Huxley, the author of Brave New World, died the same day as C.S. Lewis, who wrote the Chronicles of Narnia series. Unfortunately for both of their legacies, that day was November 22, 1963, just as John Kennedy's motorcade passed the Texas School Book Depository. Huxley, at least, made it interesting: At his request, his wife shot him up with LSD a couple of hours before the end, and he tripped his way out of this world. Which, if you're going to go to your reward without anyone's noticing, is probably not a bad way to end it all.

the future is coming

Via The Inquisitor:

Thursday, June 25, 2009

michael jackson (1958 - 2009)

I always loved this song. RIP.

what is postmodern, anyway?

In an act of hubris, I try to locate meaning for the word "postmodern" over at Jacket Copy today. The piece was originally titled "How Can Bigfoot and My IT Department Both Be Postmodern, Or What Does Postmodern Mean Exactly?"

Sunday, June 21, 2009

sunday short stack

"Should we all confess our sins to one another, we would all laugh at one another for our lack of originality." - Kahlil Gibran

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

cleveland leads the nation in drifters

These "hastily made Cleveland tourism videos" are comedy gold.

Via Greg Q

Sunday, June 14, 2009

sunday short stack

“Gardens are not made by singing 'Oh, how beautiful,' and sitting in the shade.” - Rudyard Kipling

Saturday, June 13, 2009

no tattoo = mute or mysterious?

Via Luke McKinney at Cracked, what does your tattoo location say about you?

Friday, June 12, 2009

special event status

LA Weekly on the current state of Sunset Junction:

Their message: Either work with the community or stop the festival. Until the permits are issued, the fate of this year’s fair is far from assured. Some think it may not happen at all, and blame decisions that SJNA has — or hasn’t — made. Says Sarah Dale, one business owner twice burned by the alliance: “It’s very hard to negotiate with people who at the end of the day don’t do what they say they’re going to do.”

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

spontaneous joy explosion

Be sure to watch 'til the end...

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

the big milk

Vintage LA tour company Esotouric has launched a new blog to replace the one that got them started. The 1947 Project isn't active anymore, but it was partly responsible for two of my favorite early escapegrace posts: suicidal tendencies circa 1947 and poison is the new black.

The Esotouric blog's first post takes us back to when Raymond Chandler was but a humble creamery bookkeeper.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

sunday short stack

"Language is a skin: I rub my language against the other. It is as if I had words instead of fingers, or fingers at the tip of my words."
- Roland Barthes

Saturday, June 06, 2009

52 books in 52 weeks

15. Will You Take Me As I Am: Joni Mitchell's Blue Period by Michelle Mercer

I reviewed this book here.

16. How the Light Gets In by M.J. Hyland

An Australian teen comes to the U.S. as an exchange student and consistently sabotages her big chance at a new life. Even as Louise self-destructs in all the cliche ways American kids do, Hyland manages to keep her fresh and endearing - the true strength of this novel. I can't remember how the story ends, but I'm sure Lou's going to be alright.

17. Clear: A Transparent Novel by Nicola Barker

This novel takes place in the 44 days David Blaine starved himself in a suspended plastic box above the Thames. It was sort of fascinating to read a book that was almost designed to be immediately dated. Barker is not quite as successful at keeping her narrator endearing, but the story is entertaining and has all the quirk Barker is known for.

18. Novel About My Wife by Emily Perkins

Both Clear and Novel About My Wife deserve praise for female authors writing surprisingly convincing male voices. At times in both books, I was startled to recall the gender of the writer. I was very excited to pick up Novel About My Wife after it won this year's Believer Book Award, but I wish that it had been tighter in its plot and pacing. The premise and characters are compelling, but there are too many superfluous sentences.

Friday, June 05, 2009

his one sunglassed eye

I don't know how I missed this literary apocalypse quiz. I just hope you score higher than I did. I think my failure means I should be spending my time more apocalyptically. (via @UMinnPress)

Here are some favorite apocalyptic scenes not included in the quiz. One is Gore Vidal; one is Carolyn See; one is Nathanael West.

"It made little difference whether these mysterious blobs of light were hallucinations, intergalactic visitors or military weapons; the important thing was to explain them. To behold the inexplicable was perhaps the most unpleasant experience a human being of that age could know….And since our people were (and no doubt still are) barbarous and drenched in superstition, like the dripping ‘Saved’ at an old-time Texas baptism, it was generally felt that these odd creatures whose shining cars flashed through our poor heavens at such speed must, of necessity, be hostile and cruel and bent on world dominion, just like ourselves or at least our geographic neighbors.”

"He was very angry. The message he had brought to the city was one that an illiterate anchorite might have given decadent Rome. It was a crazy jumble of dietary rules, economics, and Biblical threats. He claimed to have seen the Tiger of Wrath stalking the walls of the citadel and the Jackal of Lust skulking in the shrubbery, and he connected these omens with ‘thirty dollars every Thursday’ and meat eating."

"Finally, it was the city that held us, the city they said had no center, that all of us had come to from all over America because this was the place to find dreams and pleasure and love. I noticed – looking at headlines – that some cities emptied and some didn’t. Ours didn’t, not completely. They said we were crazy to stay. But then someone had always said we were crazy to be here in the first place. And someone had always said Noah was crazy to build a boat in his desert, and Lot had been crazy to pack up, on an impulse, and head west."

Thursday, June 04, 2009

waiting for the statistical third

David Carradine (1936 - 2009)

Koko Taylor (1928 - 2009)