Thursday, March 31, 2011

The tenth book I've completed in 2011 is Veronica, by Nicholas Christopher. I was so sucked in by it that I dropped everything else I was reading and finished it in 27 days. That's almost 12 pages per day, way above my average. Some might call this book magical realism, but it's really just an all-out magical fantasy adventure romance. It pretty much leaves the realism behind. It's the most imaginative story I've read in a long time, maybe ever. It's incredibly detailed, but moves fast. That's hard to pull off. I don't normally read fantasy, but since this takes place in New York, it feels very grounded, and it's fun to think about the locations in the book, which are places I walk through and around on a regular basis, being the scenes of a magical story like this. It turns New York into a kind of enchanted forest. Besides New York, it also involves another place where I've lived, having to do with the origin of the stone used to build the Empire State Building. (Hint: Breaking Away.) I'd been vaguely aware of Nicholas Christopher as a poet, though not one I've read. Finding this book was a pleasant surprise.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Why didn't I think of this sooner?


These paintings are turning out even better than I expected. And all I needed was a cheap watercolor kit from the kids' art supply section at Office Depot. I love being able to scan and crop them. In both of these you're seeing just a fraction of the original picture. (Scroll down.)

Friday, March 18, 2011

Thursday, March 17, 2011


A more efficient way to make my point would just be to link to this article.

No matter who can tell which picture was made by whom, the question I'm more interested in is, Which picture do you like better? I like the kid's picture better. (I think that's supposed to say, "Untitled".) I like the intensity. But I'd gladly hang both these on my wall.

Museum-quality art, by me


picnikfile_k1MUKd

I did this the other night in two or three hours after being challenged that I, a person with no training or experience in visual art beyond 8th grade, could not sit down and make a picture that was just as good as anything the Abstract Expressionists ever did. Now, this is colored pencil, not paint, but I think I got pretty close to what those paintings look like with no trouble at all. This isn't a knock against that kind of art, which I'm a fan of. It's just to make the point that the statement "My kid could paint that" need not be taken as an insult.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Anyone who still doubts the existence of facile politically correct "criticism" should read this moronic article by David Sirota on Salon, which somehow manages to blame Back to the Future for Peter King.

Another asinine article I came across accuses Amy Sedaris of being racist. Please. And people in the comments there also accuse Silverman and Colbert. Are you kidding me? Satire, anyone? Ever heard of it?

Friday, March 4, 2011

The new Black Warrior Review is out, and I have a poem in it as part of a feature on the topic of nudity. I wasn't thinking of nudity when I wrote it, but I guess the shoe fits. Ch-ch-ch-check it out.