- Reader W.: “A Pickle for the Knowing Ones is bananas. That probably explains why I keep returning to it.”
- Reader P.: “biologically informed jurisprudence could be a steeply slippery slope.”
Responses: October 18, 2020
- Reader V.: “Suddenly Reddit is everywhere [and] this reminded me of your surprisingly great Reddit links a few months ago: How “Am I the A—hole?” Created a Medium Place on the Internet.”
- Reader T.: “I’m just going to leave this right here. QAnon High Priest Was Just Trolling Away as a Citigroup Tech Executive.”
- And in serendipitous synchronicity, A Different Reader T.: writes, “I may have broken a leg tripping on the QAnon rabbithole. Thanks for nothing! But anyway this: What we can learn about QAnon from the Satanic Panic.”
Responses: September 27, 2020
- Reader B.: “Such riches! ¶ I especially admire those book covers. Reminds me of a James Blaylock novel where someone figures out a meditation technique based on old sf paperback covers.
- Reader J.: “Well done on Kirby Ferguson. I’d say the jury’s out on human rationality, what with the national IQ test coming up this November, but every little bit helps.”
- Reader K.: “Based on your link a few weeks ago, you must love Allie Brosh as much as I do. There’s a new interview! And a comic/chapter from her new book!”
- Reader S.: “Your piece on the language of suicide. Beautiful and challenging.”
- Reader T.: “Some time ago you shared the story of prisoners uniting to create a meal honoring George Floyd. I was reminded of that when I saw this thread on a death row inmate making cheesecake using what he had. It’s heartbreaking on its own and because we continue the barbaric practice of state murder.”
Responses: September 20, 2020
- Reader B: “Love the foof-a-quotes.”
- A different Reader B. re: Beryl Markham’s West with the Night — “One of my absolutely favorite books.”
- Reader M. writes in re: statements like ‘Today in 1501, in the early morning hours…’ — “I always wonder about the actual nature of ‘today’ and the shift of 11 days when the Gregorian calendar was initially adopted in 1582 (and eventually more widely so) .. hence my cognitive dissonance with the phrase, ‘today in’ any date on or prior to October 4, 1582, anywhere, and any date somewhere else after that without also providing the Julianness or the Gregorianness of the calendar. ¶ Anyhow, this is my dissonance, most perfectly illustrated by the fact that Shakespeare and Cervantes died on the same date in the same year, but Cervantes died 11 days earlier than Shakespeare.” — Believe it or not, this came up in the first few months of this newsletter and I finally decided I liked the style of the construction more than the literal accuracy. Plus, what’s 11 days between friends (and more than 400 years :)?
- Reader S.: “Thanks for the link to the Miranda July article, you and I have talked before about our shared adoration. But…her Dad is Richard Grossinger ??? ¶ Explains a LOT. — I knew of Sacred Hearts Books, but not Grossinger. It does indeed explain a lot about July’s beautiful weirdness.
Responses: September 13, 2020
- Reader B.: “Lamott is exactly right. ¶ wlkwos!”
- Another Reader B.: “So happy to hear about Allie Brosh. Thanks for keeping me connected.”
- Reader P.: “Speaking of sand art, this guy made sand art in bottles that sometimes took up to a year to make! You Have to See This $22,000 Sand Art“
- Reader S.: “Gregory Prescott’s portraits are so beautiful. I encourage everyone reading to take a minute for them and the Body series. Body beautiful.”
- Reader V.: “AI photo-realistic renderings of people in paintings are like those images that seem to flip between one thing and another, except they flip between creep and cool.”
Responses: September 6, 2020
- Reader B.: “1. exclaiming abruptly ‘I must mizzle!’ really sounds like the speaker has to pee, not flee. ¶ 2: returning to a text and finding it changed… I dimly recall the term; ‘fundability’ to describe a text revealing more on a reread, but can’t find my notes. ¶ 3: Turrell is gorgeous.”
- Reader K.: “Your quote from Halldór Laxness made me think of him for the first time in years. Have you read him? I loved his novel Independent People, when I read it 40 years ago, and I’m thinking I should read more of his work. Reminds me of Knut Hamsun (an even more complicated guy), whose work I read and loved about the same time.” — Independent People is the only Laxness I have read…so far. I’ve read a bit more Hamsun, but Hunger is the one that sticks with me, and a book everyone should read.
- Reader M.: “Those were some good Reddit forums (err, subreddits). Here are some you missed! Nature is F***ing Lit, Oddly Specific, Next F***ing Level, Aww, Made Me Smile, and Murdered by Words.”
Responses: August 30, 2020
- Reader M.: “Can’t remember if I asked you this. I’m sure you and everyone else here has read a book and then have gone back to reread it and it’s not the same. Seems to be no word in the English language for that experience.” — I have that experience with books all the time…but I am not aware of a word for it! If there isn’t one, it might be time to come up with something! Ideas from the Clamor?
- A different Reader M.: “The link to the proofreader of the NY Times made my day, and I am actually jealous that he has time for that. I would hang out with him for sure.” — He typifies a certain kind of quality curmudgeon I’ve always admired: obsessive, independent, and honed. Though I will, sadly, never have the chops to be one!