November 29, 2013
The Herbalist, Niamh Boyce, which is winning all sorts of prizes in Ireland
The Crooked Mirror: A memoir of Polish-Jewish reconciliation, Louise Steinman, which should win some attention here
Disease Proof: The remarkable truth about what makes us well, by Dr David Katz & my old colleague (more…)
November 28, 2013
I myself feel extremely privileged, given that I have a low rent and my times is, for the most part, my own. That's not most people's definition of privilege, it seems: They value money over time. I live in a hovel, so in their eyes my claiming to be privileged is eccentric.
It's a little dicier when someone has (more…)
November 27, 2013
Years ago, when he first got a phone after living in the woods (more…)
November 26, 2013
Back to class, painfree, ankle strong
Winter snow on the way
Found two warm gloves to bike in (the fingerless ones don't cut it)
Two babies a'coming in the family
A favorite cousin coming to the city
Books books books
A loving cat
I could go on
November 25, 2013
November 24, 2013
November 22, 2013
My mother was running errands, heard on the car radio, & threw up her hands in shock—almost crashing into another car, whose driver gave her a dirty look. What I love is my mother as an anonymous player in someone else's story. If she's still alive, that woman is telling the story yet again today.
November 21, 2013
There's one cat too.
Many years ago I was telling my cousin that I lived in the best apartment in my building. And this was the best building on the block. And ours was the best block in the neighborhood. And the East Village was the best neighborhood in the city. And New York is the best city in the—holy cow! It dawned on me: I live in the best apartment in the world!
Well, El, he said in his soft Oklahoma drawl, I'm not sure everyone agrees with you about that.
November 20, 2013
I tried that once, & in 10 minutes the room had cleared out
And I like Marty Robbins.
November 19, 2013
Ugh! Heli politely told him it was dirty & disgusting to put bags off the floor on a table where people eat. Politely, really: I'm summarizing.
With a patronizing smile, he said, "Welcome to New York." She sputtered, I fumed. "Hope the rest of your day is better," he male-priviliged further at us. It will be, with you out of our lives, Pencil Dick.
"He shouldn't even be allowed in here," Heli said.
"Yeah. And I bet he didn't tip."
November 18, 2013
From the short excerpt she read at her book party yesterday, I can tell you it's beautifully & thoughtfully written. "Do they miss us?" she asks, and we all caught our breath.
November 17, 2013
So it was not at all surprising to me that my elementary school, James Russell Lowell School, was named after a hero like him.
What was surprising was finding out that James Russell Lowell was someone else entirely. I don’t recall spending any time on the poet at Lowell School, except to memorize his most famous line: “And what is so rare as a day in June? Then, if ever, come perfect days”—lines that I still repeat automatically on every lovely late spring day. (more…)
November 15, 2013
Locally Laid is all about sustainable agriculture: They use solar power and non-GMO corn, they set up a carton return program, and they plant a tree with every delivery & t-shirt sale.
Duluth isn't exactly a suburb of New York City (or vice versa) but I sure do wish I could get Jason & Lucie's eggs here. I'll make do by voting for them.
Here's the lyrics to a terrific little song by Mississippi John Hurt (more…)
November 13, 2013
November 12, 2013
November 11, 2013
And now I want—what? a sandwich? a phone call? a vanilla bean?
I couldn't work out because I'm resting my ankle, so I'm a little antsy.
Happy birthday, Becca!
November 10, 2013
November 8, 2013
Some combos seem implausible but work great: Last night a dynamic young fiction writer, Bradley Spinelli, read from his novel Killing Williamsburg and from a new novel set in Thailand (finish it already!), followed by Ruth Danon, who's writing a thoughtful memoir about her family, which comprised refugees, revolutionaries, scientists, artists and feuders. The two writers' themes of dislocation and exile echoed & enhanced each other—something I wouldn't have noticed if I hadn't heard them together.
We have a nice crowd every month, with a few people that come no matter who the reader is (looking at you, Mike!). A group that listens, laughs, asks, cheers.
November 7, 2013
But no, some concerned citizen thought they were doing me a solid by picking them up. Then what? If (more…)
November 6, 2013
I was talking about the book with a young black man at the gym. He asked if I'd ever witnessed a racist incident. I couldn't really think of any: because they didn't happen or because I don't (more…)
November 5, 2013
Yes, different on each hand.
November 4, 2013
November 3, 2013
I can read a map so I don't always get lost. (more…)
November 1, 2013
A really grim bar, I might add.
"Fish tacos? There? What did you expect?" I said sympathetically.
"But they were only a dollar."