The Lonely Island - “Semicolon (feat. Solange)” (from 2013’s The Wack Album)
Relevant to alllllll of my interests.May 22, 2013
“The first time I read it, I was in school, and I remember being confounded by two facts: 1) That it was originally published in 1941 and 2) That it first appeared in Irish as An Béal Bocht. And if there was one thing that was less funny than anything written before, say, 1975, it was anything that was written in Irish.”
It’s true: this book is unbelievably funny. It’s also a flaming, barbed, poison-dipped arrow through the heart of Irish hard-scrabble sentimentality. Every country on the planet should hope for such a skewering.May 22, 2013
Phew—finally all caught up on my César Aira. (Just ignore, for a minute, that he’s got two more novels due out in English this year.) If you’ve never read any of his books, and aren’t sure where or how to start, here’s how I’d rank what’s already out there:
Note that 3-5 are pretty well interchangeable. And even Seamstress has its moments. Really, you can’t go too far wrong. The guy is good.May 21, 2013
Sure, big guns like Random House and HarperCollins have the kind of elegant downtown tower offices you’d expect—but did you know that Coach House Books, also in Toronto, operates out of a real coach house? (It took Sevigny a minute to realize the entrance was through the alleyway.) And houses like Frontenac House and our own University of Alberta Press run out of, well, houses. The U of A’s abode has untold numbers of hidden crawl spaces and a set of narrow servants’ stairs, while Frontenac’s, in Calgary, doubles as the actual residence of its husband-wife founders. Both look cosy.
This week’s column is about Erinne Sevigny, an Edmontonian who spent a month travelling across Canada, visiting 20+ publishers and seeing what she could glean about the publishing industry at large.May 17, 2013
Only 16 days late this time! Great work. As usual, here are some of my favourite stories in the magazine of magazines from the month before this one. Some are behind a paywall. Sorry about that.
Culture! Check back in a month for May’s report. Or maybe six weeks. I’m doing my best over here.May 16, 2013
May 16, 2013
When I contacted the designer, Elizabeth Alice Crum, to get a closer look at her creations, she explained that they were inspired by Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick: more specifically, the theme of chance, how the narrative is woven and broken, how tension is created, and where fate takes you.