Curiosities

November 29, 2010

The New Yorker on the TSA 0

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The New Yorker posts its airport security cartoons, from 1938 to the present.

November 28, 2010

The Too-Short History of Soft Skull 0

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NY Press has a long look at the history of iconoclastic indie press Soft Skull, which recently shuttered its New York office, effectively ending the publisher’s run as a standalone press and making it just an imprint of California-based parent (and, it should be noted, rescuer from financial straights) Counterpoint. Incidentally, I’ve had a front […]

November 28, 2010

A secret room in a library in India 0

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The Times of India reports on an eerie library mystery: renovations to the 250-year-old National Library in Kolkata have revealed a secret chamber. The sealed 1000 square foot enclosure on the first floor has no windows, trapdoors, or openings of any kind.

November 27, 2010

Gifts for the Bookish 0

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The New Yorker Book Bench has posted its 2010 Holiday Gift Guide.

November 26, 2010

MFA vs. NYC? 0

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At Slate, Chad Harbach weighs in on the MFA.

November 23, 2010

Jay-Z and Michiko K.: Kindred Spirits 0

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Michiko Kakutani‘s generous and oddly moving review of Jay-Z‘s Decoded – in which she seems to find a kindred spirit –  almost makes me want to take back all the mean things I’ve said about her. I still don’t trust her judgment, but the review’s worth reading just for the mental image of her in […]

November 23, 2010

Joan Didion on Woody Allen 3

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The New York Review of Books posts a vintage essay by Joan Didion on the films of Woody Allen: “This notion of oneself as a kind of continuing career—something to work at, work on, ‘make an effort’ for and subject to an hour a day of emotional Nautilus training, all in the interests not of […]

November 23, 2010

Kafka as Comedy 2

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“When you think Franz Kafka, what comes to mind? Mitteleuropean gloom, perhaps… What you don’t think of is standup comedy.” Two young comedians are staging a new version of Kafka’s The Trial to hit the London stage next month.

November 23, 2010

Tuesday New Release Day 0

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The New Yorker has collected all the stories from its 20 under 40 series into a single, snappy volume, on sale now. Also out this week is the third volume of Edmund Morris’ biography of Teddy Roosevelt and a new literary foray by comedian Steve Martin, An Object of Beauty.

November 22, 2010

Norris Church Mailer dead at 61 0

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Norris Church Mailer, widow of Norman Mailer, died yesterday at 61 following a long battle with cancer. Mark Olshaker, president of the Norman Mailer Society, wrote: “She was the pilgrim soul who captured and won Norman’s heart and mind and who shared with him the last three decades of his life.”