Wednesday April 14th, 2010

In the Ether

lyleThis post about a new book starring Lyle the Crocodile sent me zooming back in time, to the library in my Oceanside, New York, elementary school, where I would sit near the large windows and read Lyle’s adventures. I can’t believe he’s still around. Made my day. . . . I didn’t notice it at the time, but NYRB posted a passage from Robert Walser to mark spring. . . . Lorin Stein, recently minted editor of The Paris Review, admits to never having finished a John Updike novel. And he either loves Merle Haggard, or loves joking about Merle Haggard. Maybe a little of both. . . . Ned Beauman says novelists should be paying more attention to waste: “The age of compulsory recycling, plastic bag taxes, and shrinkwrapped cucumbers has not yet found its poet.” . . . Stephen Gertz points out that an anarchist book fair scheduled for this Saturday in New York is maybe not in keeping with the anarchic spirit. . . . Stefan Beck really doesn’t like William Burroughs’ Naked Lunch: “[It] is one of those regrettable works that must be defended on the grounds that it does well what it set out to do, with no consideration given to whether what it set out to do is worth doing.” . . . Speaking of Burroughs, he appears (duh) on this chart of who was on what when they wrote what. . . . The fascinating career of Nina Bourne, a publishing executive who recently died at 93. She was a great champion of Catch-22. When she wrote to Evelyn Waugh seeking a blurb for it, Waugh wrote back: “I am sorry that the book fascinates you so much. It has many passages quite unsuitable to a lady’s reading.”