Friday, October 20, 2006

Oh no, Don Ho

1. Have you seen "Bob"? You must see "Bob"! (Via Sam Anderson's really smart piece on Slate.) Weird Al does Don't Look Back's "Subterranean Homesick Blues" as . . . a series of palindromes, complete with an Allen Ginsberg–looking guy off to the side!

In other musical mischief-maker news, "Anna Russell, Deft Parodist of Opera Culture, Dies at 94":
[H]er instructions about “How to Write Your Own Gilbert and Sullivan Opera” seemed to deflate the reputation for wit and effervescent fantasy the operettas had acquired. She provided “all the necessary ingredients” for do-it-yourselfers, offering a model prime example. She stirred together patter song and madrigal, paternal stubbornness and young love, class snobbery and babes switched at birth and led her star-crossed heroine, Pneumonia Vanderfeller, to happiness and ever-greater wealth.

2. Ages ago I wrote up a few "Best of New York" entries for The Paper Which Shall Not Be Named. They slipped my mind . . . and now they're out! But—don't visit the site. I'll just tell you what they are:

—Best New York Noir: Sara Gran's Dope
—Best Local Literary Blog: Light Reading
—Best New Literary Magazine: A Public Space
—Best Local Media Program: That show on New York One where they tell you what's in the newspaper

3. Unrelated, but this sounds interesting:

REPRESENTING ISLAM: A Talk by Tariq Ali and Eliot Weinberger
Friday, October 20th, 7pm
McNally Robinson Booksellers
52 Prince Street
(212) 274 1160

An illuminating and provocative conversation on the representation of Islam in the West at a time of demonization of the Muslim world by international leaders and much of the media.

Weinberger is terrific—especially "What I Heard About Iraq," a brilliant use of quotation. (I think we can call it a "cento.") I haven't read Ali, but I'm intrigued...


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