Tuesday, September 16, 2014

European vacation

So, from the library system I requested Sacheverell Sitwell's The Gothick North: A Study of Medieval Life, Art, and Thought. Why? I'd seen Sitwell mentioned in another book, and figured he'd be an interesting direction to go in. Plus he was the younger brother of Edith Sitwell, who's been one of my favorite poets for some time now.  So that added to the curiosity.

It's odd to read a book whose immediate subject relates to art and architecture and see that it has no pictures. It's just something that I think an editor would flag today. My guess is that since Sitwell was writing about Northwestern Europe, and he was writing for Britons of a certain financial standing, he assumed that much of his audience had seen his subjects or soon would.

As a historian, if he meant to be a historian, he fails, staying away from fact almost entirely. And it's hard to ignore the fact that he's something of a snob. But Sitwell makes up for the lack of photographs and plates. He's a great descriptive writer, with a deep feel for the art and buildings he's writing about. Of course he puts so many words on the page, with very little structure, that it's kind of like readng a blog that's been printed in book form with little in the way of editing.

Monday, September 15, 2014


Sorry to anything or anyone I've neglected in the past couple of days.I've felt a little off.  Saturday night I was caught out in the rain widout* my umbrella.  Next couple of days I was somewhat sniffly, especially at night. I think I'm getting over that now.

Why was I caught out? Because it hadn't looked at all like rain. There were clouds in the sky but they looked bright and non-threatening.  Contrast this with Thursday night, which had dark and ominous clouds and when there was an oppressive moisutre in the air. That night I did take my umbrella when i went out, and we didn't get a drop.

I think the last pages of each chapter have gotten swapped around is what I'm saying.

* (sic)? Maybe a little.

PPS, Got a package in the mail recently, likely to be addressed later.  Well, it had an address on it, but you know what I mean.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Greetings from the Friday Random Ten

Yup, on Friday again.  Which doesn't make a big difference in the scheme of things, I know.  There's the tag "Friday Random Ten", but a lot of things have names that don't really tell you what they are.  For example, "popcorn" isn't corn and you don't pop it.


Should probably think of a better example.

1. St Vincent - Severed Crossed Fingers
2. Cannonball Adderley - I Can't Get Started
3. Brian Eno - Another Green World
4. Pink Martini - Omide Zendegani
5. R.E.M. - Can't Get There from Here
6. Laurie Anderson - Let X=X
7. Elton John - Where to Now St. Peter?
8. Fleetwood Mac - I Know I'm Not Wrong
9. New Pornographers - War on the East Coast
10. Ernie K-Doe - A Certain Girl

Thursday, September 11, 2014


I can hear crickets outside.  This is kind of a surprise, when you think about it.  I live in a city.  Crickets seem more like a rural insect.  Or maybe I just think of them that way because I remember hearing them at my grandparents' house, in the countryside outside of Toronto.  Anyway, as long as they're out there instead of in here, more power to 'em, I guess.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Something I like to do every once in awhile is repost a random short film someone's made with a Kinks song as soundtrack.  If nothing else it (kind of) rewards their good taste.  Anyway, this one is nice.  On YouTube it said "a snowy day in Athens" which I guess they mean Georgia?  Not known for snow, but life is full of surprises.

Format unbecoming

It's kind of a drag to send off a story and get a form letter email a few months later with the "not right for us at this time" thing and "feel free to submit to us again."  (So you won't call the FBI on me?  That's kind.)  These are the publishing world's equivalent of "keeping your resume on file".

I was disappointed but, in this case, not too surprised.  The submission guidelines specified that the text of the story were to be embedded in the body of an email.  Now there are outlets, I'm sure, that have reason to be paranoid about attachments: viruses and the like.  _______ might probably have their reasons.  But the truth is that manuscripts just look better in, well, manuscript format.  And in the body of an email you lose a lot of that and everything gets squished together. 

So, I'll be looking for an alternative in the next couple of days.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Pre-electoral Saturday Random Ten

I wonder.  I do wonder if after the primary Tuesday the polling calls will end, or at least ease up.  Or will they continue right through to November.  These phone calls have lost whatever charm and novelty they might have had.

Don't mind the yard signs, though.  They're kind of quaint.

1. Diana Krall - Every Time We Say Goodbye
2. Elvis Costello & the Attractions - Watch Your Step
3. Dave Van Ronk - Talking Cancer Blues
4. Lower Dens - Alphabet Song
5. New Pornographers - Champions of Red Wine
6. Amy Winehouse - There Is No Greater Love
7. The Band - The Weight
8. Morphine - Thursday
9. Fats Domino - Poor Me
10. Heidi Bruhl - Wir Wollen Niemals Auseinandergehn