Re: Bay Area Meetup: Going On Now

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Arrrghh!! Why do the Bay Area meetups always occur when I'm visiting my parents in Orange County! It's a wonder I ever got to meet w-lfs-n!

I am never going to become one of the Unfoggedtariat at this rate.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 2:32 PM
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What's worse is that I live only 4 blocks away from Jupiter.

When I'm not in Orange County.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 2:33 PM
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You met w-lfs-n? w-lfs-n never revealed this fact.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 2:39 PM
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Oh shush Ogged, you know very well that I did for us both, as w-lfs-n's the gentlemen type.

I think I mentioned it once in some thread that we went to a movie, and then someone (Gonerill IIRC?) repeated this not-so-salacious truth/vile calumny in another thread. Dude, you guys pay attention.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 2:44 PM
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Some thread!


Posted by: Amber | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 2:49 PM
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To whom was I supposed to reveal it? Is there a registry? (No, not this one.)


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 2:49 PM
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Your possessiveness frightens w-lfs-n, Ogged. Be more discreet.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 2:51 PM
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It's just that Ben's persona here is so unlikable, so inhumane and off-putting, that we all assume that he has no human contact, and then we find that he's having this dalliance and that--it's a deception, and we are about the truth.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 2:55 PM
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To my chagrin, I admit that I was entirely innocent/ignorant of w-lfs-n's intended meaning re the "plum" metaphor, and it had to be explained to me later. By w-lfs-n.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 2:56 PM
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Dalliance?!

Well, I never.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 2:57 PM
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Actually, it's precisely the other way 'round. My persona here is inviting and likeable, but the truth is that I have no human contact.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 2:57 PM
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A romance like this goes beyond any mere dalliance.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 2:58 PM
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It's more like a tarriance.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:01 PM
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I wanted to do fake html tags around "By w-lfs-n", but the comment box thing thought I was really trying to do something. Shrug.

Now I am quite pink and flustered though. Such gallantry, w-lfs-n!


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:02 PM
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Pwned by 13. I take it back.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:03 PM
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Now I am quite pink and flustered

sex-ay


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:05 PM
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The fake html tag would have said "blush," so that kind of pink and flustered. Oh, w-lfs-n. You so wish.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:07 PM
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Every night.

So, how's your boyfriend?


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:08 PM
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Talked to him last night. Hasn't dumped me yet.

Alas, for you.

He gave me several suggestions for my 50 Books on Top of Dissertation Work Challenge, although I am not certain how many I will take.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:13 PM
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So, how's your boyfriend?

Subtle, Ben. And smoove.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:16 PM
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Po Bronson: "Bombadiers"; Edward Abbey: "Desert Solitaire"; Patrick O'Brien Master & Commander series; Henning Mankell.

Except for O'Brien, never heard of these, uncertain as to their literary merit. Then again I'm a classics/high modernist type.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:16 PM
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Henning Mankell is well-thought-of by those who like detective novels. My mom's a fan. I have one of his more recent books, Faceless Killers. Apparently his earlier work is considered better.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:18 PM
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Po Bronson has always annoyed me. The Edward Abbey is great.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:19 PM
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This thread could be made useful once again if anyone with strong opinions about books to buy would offer them. I have a gift certificate for my favorite used bookstore. I've got only one strong contender (Christian Bök, w00t!) and not much time to shop.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:19 PM
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"Constantine's Sword" by James Carroll.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:20 PM
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I've never read any Ed Abbey, but my dad and his family were not fans.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:21 PM
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O'Brien bored me silly, and I typically enjoy historical fiction.


Posted by: Amber | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:21 PM
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This thread could be made useful once again if anyone with strong opinions about books to buy would offer them.

What sorts of books are you looking for?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:21 PM
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This thread could be made useful once again

I don't like your attitude.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:22 PM
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You should buy Camus' The Fall, David Markson's Epitaph for a Tramp, William Gaddis' The Recognitions, and Max Frisch's I'm Not Stiller and maybe also Homo Faber, which I haven't read. If you can locate Aristotelis Nikolaidis's Vanishing Point, it is one fucking weird-ass book and might be diverting.

I've also heard intriguing things about The Education of Arnold Hitler, but strangely enough I've never gotten around to finishing it.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:23 PM
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29: It's not my fault that neither the Bay Area nor Ben w-lfs-n can make it happen.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:24 PM
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Also Kokoro by Natsume Soseki, In Praise of Shadows and Some Prefer Nettles by Junichiro Tanizaki.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:24 PM
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What types of books do you like?

I loved Auster's New York Trilogy, but not everyone agrees with me.

I have committed myself to trying out sci fi/fantasy, and bought The Song of Ice and Fire series by George R.R. Martin, and China Mieville's "Perdido Street Station."

Most of the time I like historical fiction, and Edward P. Jones' fits the bill--"The Known World," about a slave-owning freeman. His collection of short stories, set in contemporary D.C., "Lost in the City," are particularly good.

I love short fiction. Favorites include Flannery O'Connor, Joyce Carol Oates, Alice Munro, John Cheever.

I like Ian MacEwan, but people disagree with me on this. I also want to try out Murakami.

Weird, intriguing book: Samedi the Deafness by Jesse Ball.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:25 PM
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26: do you know why?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:25 PM
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For your patience, Ben w-lfs-n, I actually got you a present which I intended to mail out with the novel. I hope you have some room in your luggage to take them home with you, and room in your heart to forgive me.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:25 PM
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I got Chabon's "Gentlemen Of The Road" for Christmas, and am mighty excited to read it.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:26 PM
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Agreed with w-lfs-n on Tanizaki. Some Prefer Nettles is one of my favorites.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:27 PM
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I believe it was here that I saw recommendations for Ryszard Kapuscinski, and I'm looking for that. I've been on a poetry kick lately and I'll be looking for some things I don't have by Dean Young, Tony Hoagland, and Robert Hass, but it being a Dallas bookstore (albeit a good one) I don't expect to find them. I'm not really taken with Auster or MacEwan but those are all in the same universe as the authors I favor.

Gaddis's The Recognitions is on my list. I have some Markson waiting at home, too.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:30 PM
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I also want to try out Murakami.

I used to read a ton of Murakami and then just stopped, possibly because of a dissatisfying with, I think, South of the Border, West of the Sun—a book that I bought mostly because of the cover illustration, a fact which I have noted here before, though I can't locate the comment in which I did that—anyway, I recall liking Norwegian Wood and Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World a lot.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:31 PM
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Read Some Prefer Nettles after In Praise of Shadows for an enhanced experience of the Noh scenes.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:32 PM
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A dissatisfying experience.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:32 PM
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Poetry!

Richard Siken is an amazing new poet. I also like Stephen Dunn (Different Hours) and Philip Larkin.

Try Colm Toibin (The Master) and Saul Bellow's "The March."


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:36 PM
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I don't think you should buy any new books, 'Smasher. They'll only cut into your Unfogged reading and commenting time.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:42 PM
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I have Different Hours and Crush. Do you know Robert Hass? The extended songs from "My Mother's Nipples" might have been written by the Mineshaft.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:44 PM
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i recall i read sometimes Norvegian wood and the Fall, not in english, english is still too difficult to read prose
41, so who did you witness to drown? :)
i noticed count like 3 times you mentioned The Fall


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:50 PM
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Thanks for the tip! I am behind on my Saturday Poet series.

I have friends in UCI's MFA poetry program, and they suggest all sorts of new poets that I've never heard of, like Patrick Phillips "Chattahoochee"

Do check out Richard Siken--I think he is amazing.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 3:53 PM
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38: I second the Kapuscinski recommendation enthusiastically, but duty to the truth requires that I also recommend this TLS piece about Kapuscinski's liberties with facts.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 4:09 PM
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Edward P. Jones' fits the bill--"The Known World," about a slave-owning freeman. His collection of short stories, set in contemporary D.C., "Lost in the City,"

It didn't occur to me when I read the comment but I have a friend who is an enormous fan of the work. In fact she was here for a Sm/thsonian fellowship on 19th century photography by black artists and cited Jones for . . . something or another, I dunno, led to a watershed discovery or some such. I associate it with her work (seeerious scholarship) and so I'm surprised to find it recommended for a recreational context.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 5:31 PM
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38: foolishmortal firsted the recommendation. It's been on my wishlist for a while. I'll look for Soccer or Shah tomorrow.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 5:32 PM
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I wish I was going to UnfoggeDCon. I miss all of the meetups!

As it is, I won't be in DC until 1/7-1/14. Alas.

Anyway, Edward P. Jones won the Pullitzer for The Known World, and some other award for Lost in the City. He's a great contemporary writer.

I'm also a fan of South African literature, esp. "The Sophiatown Renaissance. Try Bessie Head.

For other South African lit, J.M. Coetzee, of course.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 6:00 PM
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Coetzee, naturally. I think I have Slow Man in my bag and now I'm behind by another novel, right? Bessie Head, I don't know. What brings you to the District? You will be tarrying here, it appears.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 6:20 PM
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A torrid tarriance indeed.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 6:24 PM
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No mere dalliance, I promise you that much.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 6:28 PM
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49: The Emperor and Another Day of Life are also good introductions, and fairly short. In the Shadow of the Sun is the weakest of his Englished books.

Poetry recommendation: this collection by Francis Ponge (there are a couple of excerpts at the link). Beautiful translations. Robert Bly has also made some Ponge translations, but they are best avoided.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 6:30 PM
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Jesus does not fear Iron John, but he will bitterly rue the day.

On his way up Ponge picked a fight with Henri Michaux, so he is to be shunned. Michaux is the shit.



Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 6:40 PM
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What brings me to D.C.? What doesn't?! D.C. is awesome!!

My best friend from high school (I'm originally from Orange County, currently at UC Berkeley, although I only confess to that here) works in D.C., as does her husband, so I'm crashing with them as I do about once a year during a school break. I'm also going to hang out with Amber. I hang out with them, go to museums for free, eat Ethiopian food, and meet up with D.C. bloggers. Shoot the breeze, raise some ruckus, get a little hitch in my gitalong. Okay, not the last.

I'm currently reading Thomas Hardy's The Return of the Native. I also plan to read me some Evelyn Waugh--A Handful of Dust. This should be a nice throwback to my English major days, before I got all het up about employment discrimination law and policy.

Do you like Richard Yates' short stories? Revolutionary Road and Liars in Love are supposed to be very good, if you can find them in used bookstores. They're on my list of books to read in 2008 for my 50 Book Challenge.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:10 PM
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I've never understood the appeal of Robert Bly; "Iron John" conveys the clanging quality of his language.

Ponge and Michaux were nearly exact contemporaries, and both were similarly unclassifiable as writers. I've never heard of this fight between them, and I suspect that the fabulist Michaux made it up.


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:12 PM
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I like Robert Creeley and Wallace Stevens, m'self. Amy Lowell, Robert Lowell, some James Wright, some Donald Hall, in particular his collection about Jane Kenyon. Donald Justice.

Robert Bly has some moments.

There was some article in The New Yorker about the businessman-poets Dana Gioia and _____ (I forget) and how they encourage formulaic, unchallenging, crowd-pleasing poetry (cough Billy Collins cough) after that big donation to The Poetry Foundation by the Lilly foundation. Lemme dig it up.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:18 PM
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Here it is: .


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:21 PM
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Here it is: .


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:21 PM
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Oh oops, I messed up the html AND posted twice. Bad Belle.

The Moneyed Muse .


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:22 PM
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I was just sending a classicist the poem Billy Collins wrote this year about Catullus earlier today. Only after the fact did I think about it; his quasi-parody never approaches the hostility of Pedicabo ego vos et irrumabo.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:23 PM
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Billy Collins is an idiot. I know the poem you mean, and I really hate it. Catullus himself, as you suggest, is at least a thousand times more interesting than the old BC, who can suck an egg, or not.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:26 PM
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(That is, I forwarded the poem earlier today.)


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:26 PM
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Iron John may be a shit poet, but he certainly can smash Jesus.

Ponge accused Michaux of subjectivity around 1950. I had not been aware that he was about Michaux's age.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:28 PM
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50 cents a share!


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:28 PM
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Revolutionary Road has been recommended to me strongly.

You might also get The Sot-Weed Factor, which I haven't read but which my father likes a lot (apparently he has a first edition) and whose opening paragraphs won me over body and soul in the bookstore the other day (the $20 price cooled my ardor significantly).


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:28 PM
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His collection Poetry 180 is a weird edit. I think he also did a Best American Poetry anthology.

Anthologies are nice for intro'ing modern poets to the general reader, but those make me want to smack my head. Poetry is often experienced on a one-stray-poem-at-a-time scale, but experiencing them in a collection, as it was published, make you really feel the context of the poem. The surrounding work brings the singular work to greater effect and meaning.

It's like the single vs. the album.

I got the facsimile edition of The Wasteland last year for Christmas. Awesome. Facsimile eds. are out for quite a few things nowadays.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:29 PM
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I read three paragraphs from 61 and recognized the whole story from contemporary art (except for the part where two hundred million dollars is donated to an industry journal). Pedicabo ego vos et irrumabo, Billy Collins.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:29 PM
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Inapt metaphor; it is like the greatest hits collection vs. the album.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:30 PM
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I have The Collected Stories of Richard Yates, Ben. It's out of print, but I can let you borrow mine when I'm done.

If you return my It's A Good Life If You Don't Weaken, that is. Did you finish it yet? Did you like it?


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:32 PM
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I believe that I have RR, actually.

Here's an interesting question regarding the well-titled It's a Good Life, If You Don't Weaken: have I started it yet? The answer is "no".


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:34 PM
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Pedicabo ego vos et irrumabo, Billy Collins.

s/vos/te/.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:35 PM
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Armsmasher, I can't recommend it exactly, but Michael Ondaatje's poetry has long been on my list of poetry collections to buy when I finally do justice to the pile I have sitting here. His novel In the Skin of a Lion is my favorite of the last few years.

Right now I am browsing the collected poems of Thom Gunn and also Robert Lowell.


Posted by: Ile | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:35 PM
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I'm reading this thread backwards -- who mentioned Billy Collins? Can't stand the guy. Garrison Keillor has trebled my dislike, alas, for having the man to read his poetry on Prairie Home Companion a few too many times.

Edward Abbey, on the other hand, and in a different vein, is marvelous.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:36 PM
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I would think that the various recent releases of unedited cherished texts (let's see—Ariel, On the Road, lots of stuff by Raymond Carver) would deal some proxy damage to that fortress of the editor, the anthology.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:37 PM
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Re: Yates---Disturbing the Peace affected me greatly as a teenager, but I cannot really estimate how it would go over with an adult.


Posted by: Ile | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:37 PM
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If by "Revolutionary Road" you meant the novel by Yates, I found it very disappointing. A standard indictment of the soullessness of modern suburban life, with some standard guilty love affairs which were probably shocking and naturalistic from a 1950s Methodist point of view.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:51 PM
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75: I mentioned Collins derisively, in this manner:

"There was some article in The New Yorker about the businessman-poets Dana Gioia and _____ (I forget) and how they encourage formulaic, unchallenging, crowd-pleasing poetry (cough Billy Collins cough) after that big donation to The Poetry Foundation by the Lilly foundation. "


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:54 PM
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The rest of us are just piling on.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 7:59 PM
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You know, I'm going to show up at Half-Price Books and consider myself lucky if they have so much as Robert Frost in the poetry section. But it is nice dream, this gift certificate.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 8:00 PM
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You never know! The Half-Price Books in Berkeley is where I get some awesome finds of out-of-prints. Although w-lfs-n didn't like it much, I think. Not high-falutin' enough.

And I forgive you for not reading that Seth book yet, Ben. If you let me borrow one of your books and keep it an interminable spell. Maybe your beloved Gaddis and Markson? Pretty please?


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 8:05 PM
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Yes, I have seen that Collins mention upthread.

At 21: A little surprised you haven't heard of Abbey. Desert Solitaire is fantastic (I'd call it a must-read at some point), though judging from the tastes you seem to indicate, maybe not to your liking. Which is fine.

Ben's list at 30 makes me smile, though I admit I never made it through Markson's Reader's Block, the only one I've picked up, and maybe not the best choice.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 8:07 PM
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83 to 79


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 8:08 PM
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Billy Collins is the thinking man's substitute for Keillor when it comes to hating stuff.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 8:15 PM
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So who is Billy Collins, anyway? I've only ever heard of him in the context of people here hating on him.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 8:18 PM
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For the purposes of deploying your cultural capital, he is the Tom Hanks of poetry.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 8:22 PM
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Ah, okay.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 8:29 PM
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Misc.:

I got the facsimile edition of The Wasteland last year for Christmas. Awesome. Facsimile eds. are out for quite a few things nowadays.

It's out of print, but I can let you borrow mine when I'm done.

I would think that the various recent releases of unedited cherished texts (let's see--Ariel, On the Road, lots of stuff by Raymond Carver) would deal some proxy damage to that fortress of the editor, the anthology.

You are all causing me pain, or chagrin, or something. I co-run a used bookshop, and these things threaten to topple over on me on a daily basis. I honestly sometimes forget book lust.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 8:29 PM
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You co-run a used bookshop?! These wonders topple over on you?!

I love you, parsimon. Forget anything you read upthread about my having a boyfriend or flirting with Ben w-lfs-n.

Wow, I do dally and tarry.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 8:32 PM
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Parsimon, Belle Lettre has proved herself to be a tart, not once but twice in this thread alone. Find you someone who will not dally so inconstantly!—namely, me.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 8:43 PM
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Find you someone who will not dally so inconstantly!--namely, me.

So you dally all the time, then? /w-lfs-n


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 8:48 PM
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Belle Lettre, I only rarely swing that way.

But yeah, it's weird, I think I've only actually *bought* a book maybe 3 times in the last few years. Otherwise, they're just there. I bring them home. It's great. And my bookselling self says: huh, you're all still out there, lusting after the out-of-print books and such. Huh.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 8:49 PM
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In defense of Billy Collins, I know a couple of teachers who were inspired by Poetry 180 to share poetry with young people who had really not been exposed to it at all. I consider that alone to have made him a resoundingly successful poet laureate.


Posted by: Witt | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 8:54 PM
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'smasher, I'd have joined one or another of your art tours had you not scheduled them at such inopportune or downright ungodly hours. (By which I mean, my train's not getting in to town until mid-afternoon on the 29th.)


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 8:57 PM
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Po Bronson's Nudist on the Late Shift is the second-best book about the computer industry, Sifu. Do you hate computers? I suspected as much. (The best is Accidental Empires, by Robert X. Cringely.)

I haven't read Sot-Weed Factor, but nothing by Barth can be good. It would threaten the balance of the universe.

I was curious about Tanizaki, but I found his books hard to find. This was in the pre-internet era, though. Maybe I should try again.

That reminds me: Armsmasher, spend your money on Yukio Mishima's first two novels, Confessions of a Mask and Temple of the Golden Pavilion.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 9:03 PM
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Oh yes, we are out here, lusting after books.

Sometimes, I wonder if I had become a real lawyer rather than going back to grad school, then maybe I could afford to buy all the books I want. But then I realize I'd never have to read all of them.

You know, like that Meredith Burgess character in that Time Enough At Last episode of The Twilight Zone.

Also a concern: shelfworthiness. I hate buying a book that I end up hating halfway through. But I still tend to buy more than borrow. Go fig.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 9:05 PM
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How long are you in town, parsimon? Private tours may be arranged.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 9:14 PM
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Private tours may be arranged. Why don't you come up and see my etchings?


Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 9:18 PM
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Specifically, I'm happy to take people around to see things on Sunday afternoon, if there's interest in it. I suspect there will be flights to catch, apologies to express, panties to locate, etc., and figure that no one will take me up on it, which may be for the best, as I might have apologies to express, panties to locate, etc. . . .


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 9:20 PM
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What are these art tours? Do you run a gallery?

(sorry for my ignorance; I'm a recent de-lurker and my participation in threads has been spotty recently b/c of finals)


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 9:24 PM
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Know what's worth the price of admission? The breathtaking Morans, surrounded by the Catlins at the Renwick. Also a good place to warm up between the Metro and the Corc.

I didn't see the quilts when I was in warming up this weekend. They're probably worth the price of admission as well . . .


Posted by: NĂ¡pi | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 9:25 PM
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I think I have an ex-library copy of Temple of the Golden Pavilion around here -- I may have tossed it. I can look.

Belle,

Also a concern: shelfworthiness.

This is the genius, or the pathos, of bibliophilia. Tra la! It is not a problem for me! Come see my bookshelves, they are legion, prolix. (Not really, in my own house; I consider them quite modest here; though I understand people are getting out of the book-procurement habit generally.)

Otherwise, you do realize that you can buy reading copies of many, many literary standards for really freakin' cheap, online. 30 paperback editions of standard stuff like Gaddis will cost you about as much as pair of fancy gloves.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 9:27 PM
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Does the co-owner of a bookstore really want everyone running off to buy cheap books online?


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 9:30 PM
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101: I write about art for a living. Once (while drunk) I offered in a thread to take people visiting for Unfogged on "art tours" and I've been held to that, so. You have to read all the archives and all the main-page posts.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 9:31 PM
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98 & 100:

How long are you in town, parsimon? Private tours may be arranged.

and figure that no one will take me up on it, which may be for the best, as I might have apologies to express, panties to locate, etc.

I just live in Baltimore -- expecting to come back up here on the Sunday, but that could be as late as I like or even on Monday. But I'm figuring, yeah, Sunday has to be kind of open.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 9:36 PM
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Does the co-owner of a bookstore really want everyone running off to buy cheap books online?

Good question. Does she really want them to feel they have to either settle for whatever's available at Half-Price books, or buy new for 20 bucks, or tease each other over hoarded used copies?

I don't run an open, walk-in bookstore any more.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 9:51 PM
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You own . . . an online bookstore? Not meaning to be obtuse, I'm just not following.


Posted by: Armsmasher | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 9:58 PM
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103:

Ha, I never actually got those gloves. My fashion lust is quite another thing; while I'll drop $40 on a bag of books at any of Berkeley's used bookstores every other month, I buy clothes only if they are on super sale and if I have an extra promotion code on top. That isn't to say I don't think shmancy clothes and goods aren't sometimes worth it though. I got a really nice wool coat and warmth is priceless, although mine was about $200, on sale from $400.

Books I bought on the last trip, intending to read at some point: Saturday, The March, The Master, The Collected Stories of John Cheever, The Collected Stories of Joyce Carol Oates, The Collected Poetry of Robert Creeley.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 10:01 PM
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Oh. Yes, selling only online now. Sorry. Not selling inexpensive copies of fiction or literature, though, so what I mention to people about their ability to buy those things online is, I guess, some weird kind of public service announcement, for those who are bummed if they can't afford to buy the fiction/literature they'd like.

Eh. The used book trade is pretty beat up over the cheapness of online copies.

Anyway, Armsmasher, email me, or we'll talk at UnfoggedCon -- I would like to see some art.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 10:11 PM
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I have friends in UCI's MFA poetry program

Why you two-timing, yellow-bellied, son of a ... really?


Posted by: SEK | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 10:13 PM
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parsimon, as someone who used to do rare book appraisal but now lacks access to all the necessary databases and needs money to pay for expensive cat procedures, I'm wondering if you could look something up for me. How much is a first edition in excellent condition/original sleeve of The Crying of Lot 49 currently worth?


Posted by: SEK | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 10:15 PM
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SEK:

Dude, you know I went to UCI as an undergrad. My Anteaterness predates yours. Though you may be my first blog friend (truly you are!), they are the once and future anteaters.

But yeah, you might know them. C. Ross in poetry, S. Robinson in fiction. SR finished already, I believe--she edits Faultline.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 10:20 PM
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That's just weird. I took a couple of classes with Robinson my first two years here. Didn't realize you knew her. 'Gah, but is it ever a small world.


Posted by: SEK | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 10:30 PM
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SEK, I'll have to get back to you. I will tell you this: I'd look first in the same places you have access to: eBay recent auctions (beware claims to edition and condition). b/ookfinder.com for higher-end listings detailing points for the first edition, if there are any relevant.

I don't deal in modern firsts at all, but have a couple of reference books at the shop.

Email me: what's the copyright page say? Number line? (Sorry.) And "what it's worth" is a matter of how quickly you'd want to make it worth something. If you see what I mean.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 10:33 PM
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CR and SR were in Humanities Honors with me. Now one of the HH girls is a screenwriter. I imagine tons of people know her now. Nevermind the Campuswide Honors Program network. Go 'Eaters!

It is truly a small world. My boyfriend was friends and classmates with a guy I went to law school with. We're talking from Cornell to Los Angeles, and that dude wasn't even a native Californian or New Yorker.

This is my rationalization for "never lie or exaggerate", and "don't talk too much smack about someone."


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 10:37 PM
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SEK: Does your blog have a donate button? I'm a frequent lurker, and I'd hate to sit by while you sell off first editions to save a beloved pet.


Posted by: anmik | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 10:37 PM
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A friend of mine has a little service now owned by ABEbooks, called Bookfinder, which connects to some used bookstores---so you can find cool stuff but also be supporting some local book store.


Posted by: Saheli | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 10:39 PM
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I spend 10% of my income on ABE/Bookfinder. I also sell through ABE.

I regret the loss of small dropin bookstores, but most of the US doesn't have them anyway. According to Steve at Languagehat.com though, the East still has a lot of utterly amazing storefront bookshops.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 10:44 PM
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though I admit I never made it through Markson's Reader's Block, the only one I've picked up, and maybe not the best choice.

Epitaph for a Tramp is rather different. Reader's Block and This is Not a Novel are my plane reading for tomorrow, though.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 10:51 PM
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118:

Saheli, you know Anirvan? or Charlie? or someone? Unfortunately bookfinder doesn't really necessarily support local bookstores any more or less than ABE does; which isn't to say that bookfinder isn't a great service, to provide an umbrella search of numerous online bookselling sites.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 10:54 PM
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parsimon, check your email (shortly).

anmik, no donation button, but I appreciate the offer. The thing about first editions is, well, once upon a time I valued them immensely ... now they're just books I can't scribble notes in.


Posted by: SEK | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 10:56 PM
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120:

Re: Markson. So I should try Epitaph for a Tramp, or Wittgenstein's Mistress, or something? I have the impression I should try again with Markson.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 11:03 PM
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Well, it was lovely getting to meet Jackmormon, and a damn shame we couldn't agree on a movie and all the pie places were closed. We *were* in agreement that Ogged's a little bitch, though, so comity!


Posted by: Magpie | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 11:25 PM
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Parsimon: I went to college with Anirvan. I hardly ever buy books online--or at all, actually, anymore, I'm drowning in them and people won't stop giving them to me---but I liked the fact that Bookfinder gives me the *option* of figuring out if I can buy the book from a drop-in shop. When I do buy books I vastly prefer drop-in shops like Moe's or Pegasus or Other Change of Hobbit. The Half-Price on Shattuck has yielded me some very useful stuff too.


Posted by: Saheli | Link to this comment | 12-26-07 11:46 PM
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I was just at The Other Change of Hobbit last week! It's like 3 blocks away from my house. The storeowner is a trip. Knows everything about every sci fi/fantasy book.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-27-07 12:09 AM
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126: Is Shelob (very fat cat) still with us?


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 12-27-07 12:34 AM
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Alas, I didn't see her. I am not sure. I did direct the owner to this interview of George R.R. Martin though, and he enjoyed it and broadcast it in the store.


Posted by: Belle Lettre | Link to this comment | 12-27-07 12:57 AM
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Oh, and since historical fiction has been mentioned, I am compelled to recommend An Instance of the Fingerpost.


Posted by: foolishmortal | Link to this comment | 12-27-07 1:07 AM
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SEK: Okay, your call, of course. But if you'd like a subscriber, let me know where I can PayPal some funds. I'd be happy to help with the vet bills; it's the holiday season, after all.


Posted by: anmik | Link to this comment | 12-27-07 4:30 PM
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