Thursday, March 14, 2013

Driving in my car

Sometimes driving is good.

Took a long drive to Columbus and back (a 6-hawk trip!) today for an inspiring meeting. On the way down and back I got to listen to CDs and reflect on a lot of great stuff.

Wordy stuff, like some funny Wait Wait Don't Tell Me bits (Michael Pollan and the Japanese high tech toilet quiz, for instance), and pieces from Chuck Palahniuk's book of short nonfiction pieces, Stranger Than Fiction, and the first couple of chapters of Pearl S. Buck's The Good Earth. And musical stuff too, like the David Bowie Reality Tour live album (I recommend it) and the Pretenders' first album. (I also had Scissors Sisters and Preservation Hall Jazz Band CDs that I didn't get to listening to.)

The introduction to Palahniuk's book he read himself for the recording. It is a personal essay about the cycles of loneliness and connection, fact and fiction in his work and in American culture in general. He makes this interesting point about the American dream being one of self-isolation and how a lot of his writing is about the anti-American dream: isolated people trying to find connection. And then fiction writing being another form of self-isolation -- retreat into the fiction world that you control. Still mulling.

The Pretenders' first album is a good (not quite great, but very good) album (and very of its time ... more referential to other bands when I listen to it now than I would have heard then), yet I always come away from hearing the Pretenders feeling like I should like Chrissie Hynde more than I do. Maybe it is just the quote from her "advice to chick rockers" that I read once, about not moaning about feminism and "shave your legs, for chrissakes" which kind of made me never want to listen to another thing she's recorded ever. Does that make me shallow?
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Reading: Yes, this Anshaw book is a real "what comes after the terrible moment of tragedy" book, and she set up the before the tragedy really well. That and shifting POV stuff is interesting to me - though "tragedy" is not really the right word for the moment of no return I am writing about.

Writing: Yes, 45 minutes in the morning ... like collage with words -- bits and pieces here and there.

Dinner: Yes, veggie-might sauce over marfala. (Yesterday, for kids cook night, they made "sticky chicken wings" - sauce or orange juice and soy sauce and steamed broccoli).

Soundtrack: In addition to the above ... I have had a thing this week where I hear the opening to a song and I am sure it will be a Joy Division song, and then it is not. Like ... 6 -7 times this week. Really. And none are actually Joy Division songs.

Random thing: My friend Anna compared my busy life to the piled up Weasley house.

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