I've got a tough decision coming up this evening, friends. The Stranger breaks down my options in their typically pithful fashion:
The fantastical French thinker is back with Left in Dark Times: A Stand Against the New Barbarism.
The inexplicably popular essayist reads from his new novel, Downtown Owl.
So I'm sure you see the predicament I'm in. If I go see the frenchman, people will think I'm elitist and, worse still, leftist. If I attend the midwesterner's reading, sure, it will help create the illusion that I'm a populist and bereft of a single controversial opinion outside the realm of Saved by the Bell, but I might emerge dumber for it. My father was telling me about how he enjoyed hearing the frenchman on NPR yesterday morning. He sounded envious when I mentioned that I might go see him read this evening. But I think I've already got the Jewish europhile vote in the bag. The midwesterner broadens my reach into the halfhearted hipster crowd. Decisions, decisions.
It is important to note that the frenchman's reading will be taking place at the University Book Store, while the midwesterner will be at Elliott Bay Book Company. These locations are on opposite ends of the city, therefore I won't have the opportunity to utilize that beloved sitcom scenario where the protagonist attends two book readings at the same time to simultaneously curry favor with disparate literary crowds.
But seriously, I'm going to see the french dude and I am trés enthousiaste.