Wednesday, February 13, 2008

New Additions To The Gangsta' Roll

Two new additions to my blogroll today: La Critika and Gonna Need A Bigger Boat.  The first is written by a new friend.  It contains all sorts of good stuff--about grad school, life in LA, and most important, reality TV.  Here's one of my favorite posts.

The second is written by an old friend, one I've known since I was 12. In fact, my first serious girlfriend was HIS first serious girlfriend (as far as I know). That ought to tell you something. Like? Like how about what a stud I was to have had a "serious girlfriend" at 14.  I also had a haircut that could probably accurately be described as a serious mullet. But that's another story.

Anyway, Ray is not only a great guy, he's someone who NEEDS his own blog. A few years ago I mentioned to him in passing that I had never really liked the Kinks. The next time I saw him he'd made me a five-CD collection of their material AND a fourteen-page packet with essays on each individual song. As anyone who knows Ray will tell you, as far as responses go, that was actually pretty restrained.


Seb said...

You may have ruined "Bigger Boat" forever by leading me there.

I have no comment about La Critika, except to say that anyone who cooks anything with beets is almost certainly insane, and this is a "takes one to know one" sort of judgment.

Seb said...

Oh, a few other comments, since I noticed Cartooniste commenting under your favorite post -

* I am partway into Crying of Lot 49 and I am already deeply sympathetic to Cartooniste's complaints about Pynchon. I will plow through, but so far she seems to have been dead on the money.

* I had lunch with Alex the other day, and he vindicated Cartooniste's opinion about creative undergrad theses entirely, calling his experiments with them (from the teacher's POV) "unqualified disasters." His and my other complaints about the English Department at PCU still stand, however: these people genuinely seemed to want to discourage students from writing fiction of any kind, ever. Alex is more determined than I, and as a teacher at UH's creative writing program and published author, he is clearly a success by my standards, and this after having been told by one Wes prof that "he would never be a writer of fiction." My vocabulary does not contain expletives sufficient to describe my reaction to that little gem, and given that I was raised by a US Marine, that is saying quite a lot. Even though I wasn't writing about elves, Annie Dillard's obnoxious course description put me off the whole department. I graduated Wesleyan having taken only two English courses, and anyone who knew me from my Kinkaid years can tell you that is a Goddamned Shame. I should have transferred; but had I done so, would Justin now be a Classicist far superior to anything I will ever be? Only he knows for sure, and he will very probably attempt to misdirect any response by digressing into an obscure dissertation on prog-rock.

Saxo philologus said...

No disquistions on prog-rock here - though I feel obliged to reveal that my good friend Robert was recently surprised when the music site Pandora told him that 'If you like these bands, you might also enjoy "Rick Wakeman: The Six Wives of Henry VIII."'

It is true that my infinite esteem for Mr. Beeton was no small consideration in swaying me from my initial and very visceral hatred of Latin to gruding acceptance of its necessity, to something approaching love. As a 17 year-old knucklehead, knowing that Seb had majored in the Classics did make an impression. So on the one hand, he influenced me to take up the noble career path of the medieval latin philologist; at the same time, given my current job prospects, he may have doomed me to a life of penury and professional failure.

Anonymous said...


Two comments about "Crying of Lot 49"

-For a great defense of it, email or call one Jack Massey, esq.

-I did not like it at all on my first read. Subsequent reads have greatly increased my appreciation. I would encourage you to try to find the humor in it. If you don't think it's funny, then you won't like it.

I also maintain that Pynchon is light years beyond DeLillo as a writer.-

Dezmond said...

Tim, thanks for the kind words and the plug for my fledgling blog. I plugged yours as well. Didn't it annoy you that she always was chewing gum, even when trying to kiss her?

Cartooniste said...

Pynchon *is* better than Delillo, in the same way that Cookie Crisp *is* a better cereal, bar none, than Booberry. Does that mean you should eat or buy either of them?