The spontaneous and endearing Mark C of Big Lucks is staying with me this week for the Juniper Summer Writing Institute, so we are doing things like eating pineapple salsa and buying bike pumps. Today I'm going to get my tennis racquet restrung at the sports store that's so right next to the liquor store that people often get the two confused.
I asked Twitter if there's an emoticon for "that thing where you're writing a book about the internet but it turns into a book about trains?" Two suggestions, which I dutifully retweeted: ಠ_ಠ & :000000000000. It's the first day of summer and I can hear things so well I don't know how far away they are.
Some exciting things that happened in my hometown recently are 1) someone stole a tractor from a high school, but no one knows what they looked like 2) someone stole a wedding dress and a trailer, but they looked like Colonel Sanders.
People have been saying kind things about Look! Look! Feathers of late. Diana Rickard had a nice write-up on her blog where she said: "There is a strong sense of community within these small towns and
cliques, a sense of belonging even while there is simultaneously a
strong undercurrent of alienation, isolation, and twenty-first century
futility." Thanks, Diana! Postitbreakup, whose name I've seen in comment sections a lot but I just now figured out (Post-It Breakup) posted his review of the first two stories, wherein he talks about violence and endings. Thank you! Also he posted a video of Bo Burnham doing a cool piano song about self-loathing and art. Bo Burnham looks like a dentist's son I once knew. The dentist had an office caddy corner from a tackle shop.
Finally, Michael Goroff reviewed LLF for the Barn Owl Review, and it's a very enthusiastic and articulate review. He says the voice behind the stories "is like the debasingly articulate Jiminy Cricket I seem to hear
whispering at me on my shoulder every time I open Firefox or pull up to
a Taco Bell drive-thru window or simply walk around in the haze of a
world that’s mine but that I don’t understand—an ontological cocktail
that’s one part disembodied techno-juice, one part actual, physical,
real, beautiful, natural living." Gracias, Michael! He also compared the book to E.M. Forster's 1904 Matrix-y sci-fi story "Machine Stops," which anticipates online culture in an amazingly prescient way. "There were of course the buttons by which she communicated with her friends," Forster says. Probably a lot of people—especially hardcore sci-fi fans—already know about this story, but I didn't because I have been too busy changing my Google background to a picture of a breakfast sandwich.