CNN aired its town hall with Trump and received some criticism for it. But it had been scheduled for a while and since the Right likes to accuse the Left (which CNN is at best only an honorary member) of Cancel Culture, the question to air or not to air doubtless prompted them to err on the side of not canceling. Nevertheless, opinions about the man on the stage notwithstanding, I have no carp about that. The only downside to something like this is that it took up space where something else of presumably more value might have been aired. As that seems rarely a consideration in the board rooms of media companies (what is value?…
The new novel is officially launched. Last night at Left Bank Books, in conversation with the owner, Kris, whom I am privileged to call friend, Granger’s Crossing was introduced to the public. The event was streamed and recorded.
It was a terrific evening. Good conversation, a good response from the audience, even a couple of new connections.
Now I have to plan on the next thing. I know what I want to do, the question is, as always, can I pull it off. I’ve already started work on the next Granger novel. As mentioned in the video, I’d originally intended a very ambitious series, but that was a decade ago.…
Eyes Open, Mind Engaged
To me, that is the definition of Woke. I’ve been bemused by the backlash of people who, without too much interpretation, are obviously complaining about something else loudly hurling “Woke!” as if it is a pejorative. It’s not that they have a legitimate argument, it is that they are discomfited by the implications and wish to go back to pretending there is nothing to be woke to. It’s not even subtle.
Consider one of the consequences of the backlash—the attempt to ban books. Now, this is nothing new. Banning books that unsettle the comfortable is a long American tradition, quite often less political than the kindred forms of censorship practiced elsewhere.…
A couple of recent eruptions over literary works have caused me to contemplate a curious aspect of the cultural situation. The move by Roald Dahl’s publisher to “bowdlerize” his children’s books, to render them more palatable to contemporary audiences, and the to-do over the creator of Dilbert’s public expressions of problematic attitudes. These are the most recent after a long string of reactions to artists who turn out to have opinions, beliefs, and political positions seemingly at odds with their work. Or not. Some of the review of said work has all the makings of a minor industry of reassessments based on the failings of the creators.*…
Please, Pale Person, Please Stop
Only because it is so omnipresent am I aware of the new raging over Ariel in The Little Mermaid and its casting of a Not White actor in the role. I would rather have not had this in my range of consciousness. I cannot convey the depth of weariness at this nonsense. You do this kind of stuff with the expectation that I, based on melanin content, will agree and share your rage.
Skin color is not intelligence. Nor is it a sign, frankly, of any kind of kinship above the purely coincidental.
Stop. Just…stop. I realize you think this of moment, important in some fundamental way, and might possibly be the last ground on which you might take a stand that is no longer acceptable as any definition of civilized, but all you are doing is embarrassing yourself and annoying me.…
I sometimes marvel at my own inability to apprehend the cluelessness of my fellow beings. Some positions come out of the zeitgeist that leave me gobsmacked at the utter feckless density of people.
And then I recover and reconsider and realize, no, I’ve been hearing this kind of nonsense my entire life. One just never expects it from those one considers allies. It calls into question all assumptions, then, about what one considers an ally, and the realization (which has always been there, really) clarifies that it’s all surface.
There are fans of Star Trek who have apparently only ever cared about the ship, the uniforms, the phasers, and the astronomy (such as it is).…
We Have Toys
Finally, after two trips into the wilds of computer land, I have my new scanner, all set up and ready to go. Below it my first scanned image.
I will get better at this, once I learn the various buttons on the new ‘chine. This is an old image, a 4 X 5 negative. To my pleasant amazement, the detail is still astounding in these things.
So in the space of a week, I have the ability now to once more make use of my (huge) library of negatives (only 50 + years of photography), and I have sold a new story—a novella, no less—to Analog.…
The Day After The Rebellion
Mark Twain (presumably)* said that if one does not wish to appear foolish, it is best to keep silent rather than open one’s mouth and remove all doubt. Sound political advice as well. Advice far too many Republicans failed to take.
I say “failed” but really, they didn’t fail in this—to fail at something implies you tried to do something but just couldn’t make it work. No, they never intended to do anything else. They’ve been riding high on a rhetorical wave assuming their quasi-populist Everyman shtick would stand them in good stead with the voter, who they clearly believe is an idiot.…
Some Thoughts and A Photograph or Two
I’ve been on vacation this week. I intended to use the time to do a lot of cleaning up. It’s not like there are many places to go lately. And I have a basement in dire need of cleaning.
Well, I did some cleaning—more than I probably expected to—and took care of a couple of necessary chores and generally slept more than I usually do. I wish I had gotten more done, but I’m not beating myself up about it.
Oh, here’s a picture:
Something nice, pleasant. I’m not sure all of this post will be, so I’m offering “refreshment” along the way.…
Say That Again Maybe Better Next Time
This is a mini-rant.
I have no idea how much this influences the times we are living through now, but—allow me to set the stage first—part of my job (day-job) is reading books for possible inclusion in inventory. These are generally self-published. In spite of everything, I have become…an editor.
As a youth, I experienced impatience with what have become known as Grammar Nazis. As with so many elements of good writing, I didn’t care that much as long as meaning was conveyed and the story moved along. Event was my drug of choice, character not so much. The elegance of the prose…well, sure, but it wasn’t necessary.…