Author Topic: In the New Yorker...  (Read 1015186 times)

Online Jeff Wrangler

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #2670 on: February 19, 2021, 02:17:33 pm »
I read an article by Nathan Heller about cars in American culture. It was from July 2019.

I always read Nathan Heller.

I thought I was catching up, but then I ran into the Feb. 1 that turned out to have lots of authors I always read: Jane Mayer, Jon Lee Anderson, John Seabrook, Nathan Heller.

About Heller's article: I've never read Joan Didion, but she's the kind of author who gets mentioned in TNY, so I figured she's an Important Writer, and I ought to read about her.

The articles about smells, the Chinese Cultural Revolutilon, and the Blackwell sisters were interesting, too. I don't know why it cought my eye, but I even read the short fiction.  :o
"It is required of every man that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide."--Charles Dickens.

Offline serious crayons

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #2671 on: February 19, 2021, 04:54:00 pm »
I always read Nathan Heller.

I usually do, too. I read his work when he was on the staff at Slate. But somehow I missed the car one.
 
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I've never read Joan Didion, but she's the kind of author who gets mentioned in TNY, so I figured she's an Important Writer

She is. You could read her without committing too much time because she's most well known for her essays. You could probably find many of them online. The one about the Manson murders and the decay of Haight-Ashbury hippie culture in the late '60s is particularly celebrated. I haven't read it lately.

I did see a documentary about her a year or so ago. In one of her essays (maybe the one above) she wrote about finding a child (about 9, maybe?) on LSD. The interviewer asks her what she thought about that.

"I thought it was GOLD," she says.


Online Jeff Wrangler

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #2672 on: February 19, 2021, 05:56:48 pm »
(Re: Joan Didion)

She is. You could read her without committing too much time because she's most well known for her essays. You could probably find many of them online. The one about the Manson murders and the decay of Haight-Ashbury hippie culture in the late '60s is particularly celebrated. I haven't read it lately.

I seem to remember a TNY article about her from not too terribly long ago. IIRC, the reason for Heller's article now is a new publication of a collection of her essays. He mentions the Haight-Ashbury essay.

I remember she published a book following the unexpected death of her husband, John Gregory Dunne--I think it was called The Year of Magical Thinking, or something like that. (Again IIRC, Heller says her daughter died, too.) I know she also published a novel--I think it's a novel--called A Book of Common Prayer, because it would turn up if I wasn't careful what I put in the search box when I was searching on eBay for The Book of Common Prayer.  :laugh:
"It is required of every man that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide."--Charles Dickens.

Offline serious crayons

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #2673 on: February 19, 2021, 08:51:28 pm »
(Re: Joan Didion)

I seem to remember a TNY article about her from not too terribly long ago. IIRC, the reason for Heller's article now is a new publication of a collection of her essays. He mentions the Haight-Ashbury essay.

I remember she published a book following the unexpected death of her husband, John Gregory Dunne--I think it was called The Year of Magical Thinking, or something like that. (Again IIRC, Heller says her daughter died, too.) I know she also published a novel--I think it's a novel--called A Book of Common Prayer, because it would turn up if I wasn't careful what I put in the search box when I was searching on eBay for The Book of Common Prayer.  :laugh:

Yes, correct on all points. I think she might have written a second book about her daughter's death, although both deaths occurred in close succession. She published a novel in 1970 called Play it as it Lays and maybe one or two others later. I remember reading PIAIL at this job I had in college -- making appointments for air-conditioner sales people that mostly involved just sitting around until someone called, then getting their contact info.

She also published a number of book-length nonfiction books. Where I Was From which is about, I believe, Sacramento, has has always sounded kind of good. But it's those early essays that launched her stardom, collected in Slouching Towards Bethlehem and The White Album. If you ever go to a literary event, like a reading in a bookstore or an annual book festival, you'll see a older women carrying canvas totes, and many of them are printed with drawings of Joan Didion. (Mark Twain and Edgar Allen Poe are also popular. Are these from Barnes & Noble or some big book-store chain?)


Online Jeff Wrangler

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #2674 on: February 19, 2021, 09:43:39 pm »
She also published a number of book-length nonfiction books. Where I Was From which is about, I believe, Sacramento, has has always sounded kind of good. But it's those early essays that launched her stardom, collected in Slouching Towards Bethlehem and The White Album.

Heller mentions all of them

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If you ever go to a literary event, like a reading in a bookstore or an annual book festival, you'll see older women carrying canvas totes, and many of them are printed with drawings of Joan Didion. (Mark Twain and Edgar Allen Poe are also popular. Are these from Barnes & Noble or some big book-store chain?)

I'm sure I've seen Poe, at least, at Barnes and Noble--and is there any bookstore chain left besides Barnes & Noble?
"It is required of every man that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide."--Charles Dickens.

Offline serious crayons

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #2675 on: February 20, 2021, 11:13:07 am »
I'm sure I've seen Poe, at least, at Barnes and Noble--and is there any bookstore chain left besides Barnes & Noble?

Brick and mortar chains? Not that I know of. But there are still some famous independent ones: The Strand in NYC, City Lights in San Francisco, Powell's in Portland, Prairie Lights in Iowa City, Tattered Cover in Denver ...


Online Jeff Wrangler

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #2676 on: March 06, 2021, 10:17:03 pm »
I hesitate to say I'm actually caught up, but I am now up to the March 8 issue.

I think this is partly because I just stopped reading the movie, TV, and theater articles.

In the March 1 issue I read "The Covid Conundrum." I was about to give up on it, but I pushed through to the end, and I'm glad I did because on the very last page, who should show up but my old friend William of Ockham?  :laugh:  Along with Miss Marple and Hercule Poirot.  :laugh:
"It is required of every man that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide."--Charles Dickens.

Offline serious crayons

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #2677 on: March 07, 2021, 10:40:22 am »
I think this is partly because I just stopped reading the movie, TV, and theater articles.

Do/did you read them even if you've never heard of the shows? I read them only when I'm familiar with the shows and would be able to see them. So that lets almost all theater (though I might read about the occasional show that stars someone I know from movies, or is a new take on a classic play), and many movies, although these days there's at least a chance I could see a movie that wouldn't, in the old days, have been available to see outside NYC.

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I'm glad I did because on the very last page, who should show up but my old friend William of Ockham?

The guy whose razor you introduced me to many years ago, which has come in handy countless times since!



Online Jeff Wrangler

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #2678 on: March 07, 2021, 04:31:56 pm »
Do/did you read them even if you've never heard of the shows? I read them only when I'm familiar with the shows and would be able to see them. So that lets almost all theater (though I might read about the occasional show that stars someone I know from movies, or is a new take on a classic play), and many movies, although these days there's at least a chance I could see a movie that wouldn't, in the old days, have been available to see outside NYC.

Yes, though in times past I'd frequently have heard of the TV shows, even if there's no chance I'll ever see them. Same for the plays and the movies. But reading about these things, even if I've never heard of them, keeps me informed about what's going on in Culture beyond my own little world. (This is one reason that I hated and hate the way they cut back on the movies and theater entries in Goings on About Town--I learned stuff by reading those things. That cutback happened long before the pandemic.)

Of course, I've been reading The New Yorker for, like, 40 years now, so, to make a hypothetical example, if somebody reviews a revival of a play by, say, August Wilson, I'll read it because I know who August Wilson was--thanks to reading TNY.

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The guy whose razor you introduced me to many years ago, which has come in handy countless times since!

That's the one!  :laugh:  His razor may be not sharp enough to explain the discrepancies in Covid in different parts of the world.  :(
"It is required of every man that the spirit within him should walk abroad among his fellow-men, and travel far and wide."--Charles Dickens.

Offline serious crayons

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Re: In the New Yorker...
« Reply #2679 on: March 07, 2021, 07:10:51 pm »
That's the one!  :laugh:  His razor may be not sharp enough to explain the discrepancies in Covid in different parts of the world.  :(

I don't know about the world, but I just saw comparisons of cases and death counts today between MN, SD, ND, WI and IA. Minnesota had by far the lowest case rate and lowest death rate. I think Occam would fairly quickly deduce that MN has a Democratic governor who ordered statewide mask-wearing and stricter shutdowns, whereas the others, with the exception of WI, have Republicans who did not.