Airplane Lavatory Self-Portraits in the Flemish Style

•April 11, 2012 • 1 Comment

Artist Nina Katchadourian took this self-portrait in an airplane lavatory. Brilliant.

Several more just as good at Laughing Squid.

B. B. King: Night Life

•April 10, 2012 • Leave a Comment

Here’s B.B. King performing Willie Nelson‘s great honky-tonker’s lament Night Life (Ain’t No Good Life).

I’ve had the good fortune to see B. B. King perform this live a couple of times. I love the way he slaps his chest and says “it’s my life”. That just sends me.

Arboretum Walks, part two

•April 5, 2012 • Leave a Comment

As promised in our previous post, here are more springtime photos of the Washington Park Arboretum. The cherries are just starting to open.

More photos

Simon and Garfunkel: April, Come She Will

•April 3, 2012 • 1 Comment

Here’s the old S & G singing Paul Simon‘s elemental song, April, Come She Will.

I once played this song (poorly) on the guitar for a girl from Lithuania who had never heard it before. When I sang “September, I’ll remember…” she positively gasped with delight. It’s a beautiful rhyme when you haven’t heard it all your life in dozens of songs. Actually, it’s a beautiful rhyme when you have, too.

Peeps 2012

•March 25, 2012 • 5 Comments

Here is my Peeps project for 2012. Hope to get my peeps picture in the paper. Improbable? Yes. Impossible? No!

True, by Riikka Pulkkinen

•March 22, 2012 • 4 Comments

The gently mind-bending novel True, written by Riikka Pulkkinen and translated by yours truly, is now available in bookstores.

Just so you know.

Here are some reviews:

“In Finnish author Pulkkinen’s first novel to be translated into English, a dying woman and her family become a prism illuminating love from a variety of often-uncomfortable angles… Eeva remains tantalizingly elusive as she becomes more real, a girl from the country swept up by the cultural changes of the 1960s. The emotional intelligence of the prose avoids melodrama to develop authentic poignancy.” – Kirkus (starred review)

“Maybe the recent flurry of genre fiction from Scandinavia has sparked an interest in translations of its literary fiction as well. Or maybe this prize-winning Finnish novel was simply too good to pass up… the story is made fresh by its complex play of past and present and richly rendered characterizations… A beautiful, sensuous novel.” – Library Journal

“True is a psychological drama that explores memory and forgetting, the mind’s desire to select and bend reality. Elsa’s story demonstrates that lies can offer mercy, and that truth at best remains subjective, alterable, sometimes imagined, and easily disguised… Riikka Pulkkinen, a celebrated, young, Finnish author, depicts the three generations story with skill and exceptional maturity.” – Elliott Bay Books

I’m particularly pleased that Elliott Bay, my local bookstore, is recommending it.

You can buy the book through the publisher’s web page.

Johanna Renman: Spring Can Really Hang You Up the Most

•March 20, 2012 • 1 Comment

A nice homemade rendition of this beautiful song.

Happy Equinox!

The Slants: You Make Me Alive

•March 13, 2012 • 1 Comment

Rick’s workmate Thai is in this band. He’s the one in the trilby. They’re called The Slants.

This is music after my own heart. Love the danceable beat and the 80s-style crooning.

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