East of Eden is my end-all be-all of novels. It's the answer to
people who say you don't learn enough from fiction. I consider it
no small travesty that Elia Kazan's movie version left out Lee, who
was, in my humble, the most important figure in the book. Sure,
Samuel's got the Irish wisdom and the twinkly eyes and Steinbeck's
grandfather. But Lee is the foil for Samuel and every other major
character, is full of mystery and certainty at the same time, and
is the perfect fulcrum for a sweeping treatise on human
relationships. I mean, I guess the movie was in part just a James
Dean vehicle, mid-Century Hollywood and all that, so it's -- Oh.
Sorry. Right. Reading The Power Broker now and for what I expect to
be a long time to come. The Magus turned my world inside out. David
Foster Wallace is my all time prose idol.
I've been accused of being a stunt eater. I think my accuser didn't
like mushrooms or some nonsense. Making dinner with some tunes and
a drink in hand is a regular and treasured pastime.
This one was on repeat for a while recently: Homenaje a Justino
. Also getting lots of play
time: WKCR's Eastern Standard Time. Eliza Richardson on KCRW,
Bombino, Stevie Wonder. I saw Willie Nelson recently, thank god
(him being 80 and all).