1. A sheriff in Chicago just can’t stand evicting any more people. This is one of the better things Andrew Sullivan has ever posted.
2. Xkcd brings in Quixote.
3. Bob Dylan has a new album coming out. The title? Together Through Life. Not sure who Bob Dylan is together with — last I heard, a whole lot of people and nobody in particular — but I am sure the album will be worth a listen.
4. Just for fun: the “Rock Island” opening bit from Meredith Willson’s The Music Man… on a real train.
5. John Updike was preparing for the publication of My Father’s Tears and Other Stories when he died.
6. Lou Reed’s legendary Metal Machine is back. Now it’s a trio, the Metal Machine Trio, performing something called “The Creation of the Universe”. Guitar, noise, no vocals. Should be good.
7. From HTML Giant: literary doppelgangers (Spy Magazine used to call these “Separated at Birth”). The Salinger/Pacino resemblance is pretty funny. I always thought Douglas Coupland looked like Norm McDonald, but that didn’t make this list.
9. Also from HTML Giant: a really fun interview with Noah Cicero of Youngstown, Ohio.
11. Ken Kalfus, Gary Shtynegart and others will contemplate the ever-relevant Russian humorist Nikolai Gogol at New York City’s 92nd Street Y on March 30.
13. I appreciate that Tim Barrus posted some thoughts about my memoir in progress. I’ve been sweating out every damn sentence and paragraph of this monstrosity, and I often feel discouraged, so it helps to learn that Tim Barrus seems to get what I’m trying to do here. (I’ve also gotten very encouraging feedback from many, many of you, and I appreciate it all!)
Tim Barrus is also challenging me with some of his remarks about what I’m doing. Barrus knows a bit about writing, and about memoirs, and he’s absolutely right that attempting this “can be a real bitch”. I guess it’s a no-brainer that the balance between private and public is especially hard when writing a memoir, and that it’s easy to get lost in the hall of mirrors. But Barrus says “There’s an edge. It rocks” and that’s exactly what I wanted to make sure of. Next installment tomorrow night …