- "New" 4,300-year-old tombs discovered in Egypt. I love false doors.
- Ariel Dorfman on whether soccer and the World Cup can conquer America: "Major U.S. sports events have timeouts and interludes during which ads can be breathlessly crammed in, but one of the essential attractions of soccer is the dramatic relentlessness of the contest once it has begun. You literally cannot stop the clock. This is such a sacred rule of the game that its organizers have resisted the clamor to allow video replays, even when the referee has made a flagrantly erroneous call that can cost a team victory."
- Justin Cronin answers questions from the Salon book club, including whether his daughter has read it: "And yes, she’s read it; she actually read it twice, the highest compliment a 13-year-old reader can pay."
- The Real People Behind Famous Fictional Characters @ Jezebel.
- Really liked Austin Grossman's take on why the Wonder Woman reboot is a failure: "And this is the basic problem–a superhero costume projects an idea, and no one knows what the idea of Wonder Woman is. She was conceived to be the original, iconic female superhero, but seventy years into her history, no one quite knows what a genuinely powerful superheroine should look like or what her story is. It’s sad, but because there have been a hell of a lot of interesting women, and women characters, to think about since 1941."
- Fascinating New Yorker profile of Martin Kemp, an art authenticator. Is there anything better than art forger stories? I also note this bit: "Ever since Dan Brown published “The Da Vinci Code,” five years earlier, Kemp had been flooded with works, many of them purportedly embedded with cryptic symbols, and, after a lifetime of dismissing forgeries and copies and junk, he was instinctively wary."
- A piece on unusual baby-naming conventions and laws from various countries.
- Sarah Rees Brennan on why she loves a good transformative romance.
- Great post from Elizabeth Bear on the nature of science fiction.
- Courtney Love: Still a trainwreck after all these years.
- io9 collects the thoughts of several authors on writing series tie-ins.
- Finally, a quote from Paul Magrid's program notes for the Flying Karamazov Brothers show that Delia Sherman used to kick off her Clarion week: "Ultimately, this cardboard world we construct is based on the inevitability of gravity. Each toss is a flirtation with failure and each time we catch, we deny failure, if only for a little while. Art begins with a choice, an impulse that either falls or flies. But it is the possibility of screwing up that is the dark matter of creativity and generates the tension that keeps us at the edge of our seats. Juggling is dropping."
3 thoughts on “Thursday Hangovers”
Maybe it’s just me, but I have a strange appreciation for the fact that Courtney Love is one of the few people out there who unapologetically plays terrible shows. Let’s salute our trash culture rather than ridicule it. Americans are content to ridicule AMERICAN IDOL contestants who falter before the cameras, but when it comes to paying money for the privilege of giving into their basest impulses, they complain. And is that really fair? Is that really honest? If I ever learned anything from my theater days, failed performance is often more interesting than its slicker and successful variety. It veers into places where the comfortable aren’t willing to go and can sometimes be oddly commendable. I’m not a Courtney Love fan, but I love the fact she brought her assistant onstage to film the show (often occluding the audience view), that she can’t remember her lyrics, and that she offers interminable chatter. And I put forth the proposition that this is somehow a more honest approach a band coming out for a predictable encore.
I don’t 100 percent disagree. I basically saw a Loretta Lynn show where she was high, did the same numbers only realizing it in the middle, had to bring people on stage to do numbers from her familiy, etcetera, and it was awesome. But it was awesome because she still honored the contract between audience and performer–it was still important for her to do her job, and she’s earned the right to be daffily charming and out of it (she had a broken foot and I’m sure was on meds). And she honestly wanted to connect with the audience. Or, say, Chan Marshall’s early shows–her meltdowns were part of the package.
Love’s just an effed up narcissist and I find narcissists boring. Also, the whole assistant thing reflects a Hollywood mindset–no one anywhere else in the country is real, so why bother? do whatever you want–that really gets on my nerves.
Plus, I thought that piece was really well put together. I felt like I was there, but without getting ripped off!
That said, it occurs to me that people coming to a Hole show may actually be happy to witness something like this. Got to be part of appeal.
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