May 24, 2006


Filed under: culture, literature — ted @ 11:01 am

World Cup Kickoff converts all World Cup games to a neat calendar file–in your own timezone. Lovely.

The Times offers the amusingly titled: From 'Idol' to Empire: The Success of Ryan Seacrest:

Intent on being more than just a pretty, permatanned face, the ubiquitous Mr. Seacrest is working to build an empire like those of his idols Dick Clark and Merv Griffin.

Ryan, I hate you less than I used too.

The Chronicle of Higher Education writes up Chick Lit (they sort of like it) and Lad Lit (tellingly titled "Guy Lit — Whatever"). They're certainly right about Indecision: I bought it hoping it would be awesome, and it was not even close. A selection from the article:

Sales of these books have been even more sluggish than the novels' protagonists. […] In fact, the genre was declared dead a year before Kunkel's book was even published. The critic Laura Miller wrote the genre's obituary in 2004, in The New York Times Book Review. "If female readers allowed themselves to believe that most straight men spend their time holding conversations with their penises, watching the Cartoon Network, fiddling with their rotisserie baseball teams, and contemplating the fine art of passing gas on subway trains, romance — and perhaps even human reproduction itself — would grind to a halt," wrote Miller.

Women won't read these books unless there is some hope of redemption, some effort these guys make to change. And men won't read them because, well, real men don't read.

Um, that's not fair.

Jeffrey Wells at Hollywood Elsewhere considers Alejando Gonzalez Innaritu's Babel "a lock to win the Palmes D'Or." Whether it's actually any good is another story; Wells's summary of its charm has me less than enthused, and Innatiru's track record (Amores Perros was pretty good; 21 Grams was nothing short of appalling) doesn't inspire much confidence in me.

When will people realize that when they attempt to ban books, they end up looking like complete morons? Here's a quote:

"We talk about the steady diet of trans fat and sugar, and we know the result is obesity and diabetes. But what are we feeding the minds of our students? They're getting a steady diet of foul language, violence and sexuality outside the classroom by the media. But when it comes to the classroom, isn't there something of a higher level to feed the minds of our children?" Pinney asked.

Yes. For example, The Awakening (which is on the list of books she wants banned). I thought that battle was won decades ago…


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