“The thing that I found about writing is it’s wonderfully wasteful and that’s part of the usefulness of it. If you write every day, you’re going to write a lot of things that aren’t terribly good, but you’re going to have given things a chance to have their moments of sprouting.”
– Nicholson Baker adds to our ongoing archive of indispensable advice on writing. (via explore-blog)
“No wonder, then, that Pussy Riot make us all uneasy – you know very well what you don’t know, and you don’t pretend to have any quick or easy answers, but you are telling us that those in power don’t know either. Your message is that in Europe today the blind are leading the blind. This is why it is so important that you persist. In the same way that Hegel, after seeing Napoleon riding through Jena, wrote that it was as if he saw the World Spirit riding on a horse, you are nothing less than the critical awareness of us all, sitting in prison.”
– Slavoj Žižek’s letters to and from Pussy Riot’s Nadezhda Tolokonnikova
Italo Calvino, Invisible Cities, 1972
"Cities, like dreams, are made of desires and fears, even if the thread of their discourse is secret, their rules are absurd, their perspectives deceitful, and everything conceals something else."
Phillip Levine, What Work Is, 1991
“We stand in the rain in a long line
waiting at Ford Highland Park. For work.
You know what work is—if you’re
old enough to read this you know what
work is, although you may not do it.”
Adrienne Rich, The Dream of a Common Language, 1978
“No one has imagined us. We want to live like trees,
sycamores blazing through the sulfuric air,
dappled with scars, still exuberantly budding,
our animal passion rooted in the city.”
“Only years later, at a tenth or a twentieth reading, will they begin to realise what deft scholarship and profound reflection have gone to make everything in it so ripe, so friendly, and in its own way so true. Prediction is dangerous: but The Hobbit may well prove a classic.”
C. S. Lewis’s 1937 review of J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit.
Highlighted passage, As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner, page 172.
“It’s important to live in a nice country rather than a powerful one. Power makes everybody crazy.”
– For Vonnegut’s birthday, the beloved author’s life-advice to his kids, culled from his surviving letters. (via explore-blog)
“So this book is a sidewalk strewn with junk, trash which I throw over my shoulders as I travel in time back to November eleventh, nineteen hundred and twenty-two. I will come to a time in my backwards trip when November eleventh, accidentally my birthday, was a sacred day called Armistice Day. When I was a boy, and when Dwayne Hoover was a boy, all the people of all the nations which had fought in the First World War were silent during the eleventh minute of the eleventh hour of Armistice Day, which was the eleventh day of the eleventh month.It was during that minute in nineteen hundred and eighteen, that millions upon millions of human beings stopped butchering one another. I have talked to old men who were on battlefields during that minute. They have told me in one way or another that the sudden silence was the Voice of God. So we still have among us some men who can remember when God spoke clearly to mankind.
Armistice Day has become Veterans’ Day. Armistice Day was sacred. Veterans’ Day is not. So I will throw Veterans’ Day over my shoulder. Armistice Day I will keep. I don’t want to throw away any sacred things.”
– Kurt Vonnegut, Breakfast of Champions, 1975 (via thevonnegutreview)
Robot & Frank
(2012) PG-13 - 1hr 28m
Worried about their aging father living alone, Frank’s kids give him a humanoid robot that’s programmed to be his caretaker. Reluctant Frank — a retired cat burglar — soon warms up to his new helper and begins to treat it as a partner in crime.
7.0/10 - IMDB
View Trailer || Add/Watch on Netflix
From Julian Peters, a comic-book adaptation of “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” by T.S. Eliot. The poem first appeared in Poetry in June 1915.
Happy 100th birthday, Albert Camus! Complement this lovely poster of his best-known tenets by illustrator Marcela Restrepo with the story of Camus’s unlikely and heartening WWII friendship with pioneering biologist Jacques Monod and Camus on happiness, unhappiness, and our self-imposed prisons.
The evil that is in the world always comes of ignorance, and good intentions may do as much harm as malevolence, if they lack understanding. On the whole men are more good than bad; that, however, isn’t the real point. But they are more or less ignorant, and it is this that we call vice or virtue; the most incorrigible vice being that of an ignorance which fancies it knows everything and therefore claims for itself the right to kill. There can be no true goodness, nor true love, without the utmost clear-sightedness.
Excerpt from The Plague
[November 7, 1913 – Forever]
Why not try a curated stream instead? (All streams)
The joy of a sudden Morrissey reference in Peanuts!
Image of a horse from the Lascaux caves, Stone Age
Oh, the predawn glory of Lascaux! What if this is the golden age of humankind?