Monday, October 26, 2009

Too many Tulkinghorn touchstones

Heywood Hill (main room to the left) , which I have long praised here, is sponsoring a Wodehouse exhibit and, in support, is creaking into the 21st century with this viral promotional video: ten friends of the shop reciting favorite Wodehouse lines. There are Mitfords, Guinnesses, Boris!'s father, assorted pretty girls, and Stephen Fry.


Monday, October 19, 2009

No comment...

From the gnomes at Amazon:

Dear Associate,

You are receiving this email because our records indicate that you have not earned any referral fees in the past three years in connection with your Amazon Associates Program account and have an account balance that has not been paid. This balance has not been paid because your balance is less than $10. According to the Associates Program Operating Agreement, any account that has not earned referral fees in a three year period is subject to a $10 maintenance fee...


Sunday, October 18, 2009

Oysters. Hemingway. Back From Boston.

From "A Moveable Feast":

"As I ate the oysters with their strong taste of the sea and their faint metallic taste that the cold white wine washed away, leaving only the sea taste and the succulent texture, and as I drank their cold liquid from each shell and washed it down with the crisp taste of the wine, I lost the empty feeling and began to be happy and to make plans."


Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Stark evidence

Review of the new Ellroy in NYRB suggests the extent to which Westlake/Stark has become a touchstone for the Johnny come lately cognoscenti:

I read the trilogy with a distinct, strong, and rather obscure pleasure, asking myself why, as I went along. I thought at first it must be related to why I like the Parker crime novels by Donald Westlake, which also feature an utterly conscienceless but superbly competent professional thief and killer and are also written in a minimalist style—though nothing like as extreme in its minimalism as Ellroy's novels. I wondered if it must be tonic in some way to slip yourself into the personae of fearless sociopaths and then come out of it. But the Parker novels are short, like spasms, requiring nothing like the commitment that Ellroy demands. And the Parker stories are not concerned with large political questions. Reading Ellroy is not like reading Westlake or anyone else.


Friday, October 2, 2009

This makes me very happy

A story that interests the usually disparate Telegraph, Instapundit, and Boing Boing:

A quick-thinking farmer's daughter disarmed a man who broke into her home in the disputed territory of Jammu and Kashmir. In a phenomenally bad-ass series of moves worthy of a Tarantino screenplay, 21-year-old Rukhsana Kausar attacked him with an axe, then shot him dead with his own gun.


Thursday, October 1, 2009

Oh ye of little faith....

"In Our Time" , the Radio 4 series that I have touted before, just did an hour on Aquinas that is a masterpiece of the popular discussion of philosophy and theology. You can listen at the link (or even better, subscribe to the podcast... I'm looking forward to the next program, which is about the Newton/Leibnitz calculus fight -- the second time in two weeks I've thought about the Baroque Trilogy)

Very bracing stuff. Not much of a believer myself, but I know a beautiful idea when I see one.