Saturday, September 2

Happy Days

While we spend this Labor Day weekend feeling sad that Bryan will not be able to finish The Great American Novel, let us all be excited for me, who found a copy of Lydia Davis's award-winning translation of Swann's Way at the Seattle Public Library. Not only that, but also City of Spades, the first novel in Colin MacInes's London Trilogy ("Britain's Catcher in the Rye," says the March '06 issue of The Believer) and John Fante's 1933 Was a Bad Year. Yes, Book-Loop friends, between these books, last night's 826 benefit featuring Dave Eggers, John Hodgman, Sarah Vowell, and Daniel Handler (Lemony Snicket), plus tomorrow's Bumbershoot fun with Mary Gaitskill, George Saunders, Charles D'Ambrosio, Michelle Tea, The New Pornographers, Spoon, Common Market, Blue Scholars and so many more, it should prove to be a most stimulating Labor Day weekend for Book-Loop's Pacific Northwest Sector.


MJA said...

How was listening to that John Hodgman. I had never heard of him until today, when he was beamed into my car on NPR. The station here in LA, KCRW (some of you may know it from online or podcasted listening), is really quite good. I became a member. I'm also a sucker, but that is beside the point.

So this Hodgman fellow was on the air during All Things Considered, and he was strikingly funny. His humor was bone dry and eccentric. What do y'all know about this guy?

Ben said...

Hodgman was effin' brilliant. A great, great MC. Sarah Vowell refered to him as "The best MC in New York." He didn't read any of his work, just introduced everybody with the help of his coonskin cap wearing singer, Jonathan Coulton. He had us in stitches. Bone dry is right. He was the perfect presence at this irreverent little gathering of writers and singers.

Having only heard him on the radio I can't blame you if you didn't realize that John Hodgman plays the role of the PC on those Apple ads. He also makes infrequent appearances on the Daily Show as a resident expert. He is a frequent contributor to McSweeney's, and has a authored a book called The Area of My Expertise. Also, he has an odd little podcast called "The Little Gray Book Lectures." In short, a supremely talented cat.

Listen to Hodgman on The Sound of Young America! A rare chance to hear him being relatively serious.

LTS said...

I might have a disproportionate appreciation for comments like these. Perhaps it falls under the "knowing is half the battle" banner(?!).

Anyway, thanks, guys.