Saturday, June 23, 2007

Thursday, June 21, 2007

MySpace Friends Drive

Many times have I expressed my absolute disinterest in MySpace. But that doesn't mean I don't want MySpace friends! It's complicated. I'm a bundle of fascinating contradictions! Well, I will be out of town until July, and not in a position to check my "friends requests." Now, through a "cyber blunder" of my own making (through the misplacement of a single keystroke, I accidentally entered a nonexistent email address as my own, and cannot, therefore, be entirely legitimized in the world of "myspacedom") I cannot request special "internet" friends on MySpace. I can only respond to YOUR requests for "friendship." So when I get back in town, I want to see 100 "friends" requests stacked up, awaiting my approval. Get cracking!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007


I finished THE INTERLOPER and it was just great. In fact, if I'm not too tired after my plane trip tomorrow, I'm going to go see Antoine Wilson read from the aforementioned novel at Book Soup. So now I'm reading a book called QUEENPIN. This is a real discovery! Hardboiled fiction written from a woman's POV... it's the real thing, not just a pastiche of hardboiled fiction, though it only came out this year. The author, Megan Abbott, has immersed herself in and committed herself to the style. QUEENPIN could have been written in, I don't know, 1958. I mean, it's a restrictive choice that works amazingly well. Stravinsky said something on the subject that I'm very tired of quoting (or misquoting). I'm so predictable! Okay, I'm only a few chapters in, but I don't expect any huge stylistic shift - to quote another noir, it's "straight down the line." I have a good feeling about this one. Oh, it's a lot of fun, with pitch-perfect lingo of my favorite kind.

Here We Go

Okay, this is the schedule. "Click" on it! Then "click" on whatever date you would like to know about. Over and out.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Announcing the McNeil's Movie Korner Film Festival

We are happy to announce the first annual McNeil's Movie Korner Film Festival, which will occur after the book tour and before the move to Mississippi. McNeil will make a rare personal appearance at the Pendarvis Building, where films will be screened and prizes awarded. The full schedule has not been determined, but we can say with some certainty that RIO BRAVO and SALT AND PEPPER (in a double feature with ONE MORE TIME, its Jerry Lewis-directed sequel) will be among the festival highlights. Also slated: the one where Jerry Lewis thinks he is dying but he is not, and the one where Bob Hope thinks he is dying but he is not. More announcements will be forthcoming as final decisions on the program are made. The event is not open to the public. (Pictured, Sammy Davis, Jr. and Peter Lawford, stars of SALT AND PEPPER and ONE MORE TIME, with Cleveland TV reporter Jenny Crimm.)

Monday, June 18, 2007

Certainly An Intern

Certainly there must be an intern who is in charge of noting each new mention of Robert Osborne on the "internet." By now he or she must realize how much I want to be a part of the TCM family. Why have I not received a call, or at least a restraining order?

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Solipsism Had a Short Vacation

I was just watching THE COURTSHIP OF EDDIE'S FATHER on TCM. Not a great movie, but it contains an enjoyable scene in which Stella Stevens plays drums in a nightclub. After that, I usually stop watching the movie. Anyway, it occurred to me: I really should invite Stella Stevens and Lizabeth Scott to my reading at Skylight Books on Friday at 7:30 pm. I don't know if either still resides in the Hollywood area, but if so, ladies, I do hope that at least one of you will drop by. We have a lot to talk about! In other movie news, director Dan Brown called this afternoon to say that the screenplay for "The Pipe" (based on my short story of the same name) had just won a prize at the Nantucket Film Festival. We were congratulated, Mr. Brown tells me, by the author of JARHEAD and also the actor Joe Pantoliano (pictured), who was so very memorably murdered on the television program THE SOPRANOS.

Robert Osborne Update

But I really should mention that at last night's reading I met a friend of Sheri Joseph - a friend who WRITES FOR ROBERT OSBORNE. Yes, with each calculated, circling move I grow ever closer to my goal of programming and hosting old movies for TCM. Just remember, Robert Osborne, I am not a threat! Consider me a helper.

Kitties, Etc.

Okay, I will be going now. And golly, it makes me kind of sick to leave with yet another ramble about myself at the top of this page. So I invite you, rather, to study what kind of music cats like, or educational tidbits about presidents, until I come back. The highlighted "links" in this "post" should help you in those endeavors. Better yet, use the "blog" as a springboard into the magical world of fiction (read a novel by Antoine Wilson, Amanda Stern, or James Whorton, Jr.), poetry, opera, cinema, or Alabama. Just "click" and learn! It's that easy. Goodbye, friends.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

The Triumphant Return of Solipsism

Well, my attack on solipsism did not last long, did it? Oh, solipsism, you have won the battle... but I shall win the war! Anyway, here is a "link" to a new review which I believe captures the intent or spirit with/in which my new book was written. And to be fair, here is another review with somewhat of an opposite view. Of course, it doesn't matter that I have a feeling one person understood what I was trying to get at and another person thought I was trying to get at something else called "hick baiting" (!) when my message, if I have one, which I don't, is probably something like "We are all hicks," yes, a "hick embracing" message! But it doesn't matter what I think about things like this. The book has to speak for itself. If I have to sit here and explain it on a "blog," something is wrong with it and/or me! Every opinion is fine. And I am not criticizing the person who wrote the review. She said some nice things, too, and besides, she made good points while enumerating her dislikes.

Please Note

Finally, please note that I have added Antoine Wilson to my stack of friendly "blogs" over there to the right. Okay!

It Would Be Wrong of Me

And as long as I am breaking my silence, it would be wrong of me not to mention the remarkable novel THE INTERLOPER by Antoine Wilson, who was another participant in the reading series the other night. I haven't finished it yet, but remarkable is certainly the correct word. In a strange way, Mr. Wilson's narrator seems to be a shadow-imp of the polite, restrained narrators of Mr. James Whorton, Jr. Did I just say "shadow-imp"? What am I talking about? Is that even a phrase? I'm going to "Google" it. Hold on. Okay, there are 1,040 matches for "shadow imp." It seems to be a character in some kind of Dungeons and Dragons sort of game. Also a young woman in New Zealand appears to have a myspace page under that sobriquet. But please do not let my use of the rather queasy-making term "shadow imp" discourage you from THE INTERLOPER... OR the fine novels of James Whorton, Jr. (Pictured, an imp.)

Mr. Ward's Presidential Korner 4

Yes, I know I have sworn off "blogging" for the "rest of June." But something unusual has happened: the transmission of a new edition of Mr. Ward's Presidential Korner IN PERSON! And I have to write it down before I forget. Okay. First, on Wednesday evening in NYC, I was happy to participate in Amanda Stern's reading series down on Broome St. There is always a musician involved - in this case, a Mr. Jamie Barnes, hailing from Kentucky, who introduced one of his songs by announcing that it was "about the assassination of William McKinley." I had lunch with Mr. Ward the next day (he works in the city) and told him about the song. You know how he loves his presidents! So Mr. Ward said, "I bet it had this line in it: 'Be careful how you tell her.'" I was astonished! I said, "Yes, I believe that was the first line of the song. How did you know?" And Mr. Ward explained that President McKinley said as much after he was shot, referring to his wife, who was prone to seizures. Then Mr. Ward went on to tell me that sometimes, in the middle of a state dinner, Mrs. McKinley would have a seizure and the President would reach over and place a napkin over her head! The purpose was to keep people from being distracted by her contorted features! But it seems to me that a napkin over her head would be something else to notice. Then again, I am not the President of the United States!

Monday, June 11, 2007


I guess "blogs" are by nature solipsistic to some degree, but I mean, come on! I'm tired of myself. The "blog" will be down for the rest of June. Here, read this old "post" about yak cheese. That's kind of interesting! After that, it's up to you.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

The Grimness

Just looking at those last couple of "posts." I warned you, didn't I, about how grim June would be? Now it is all coming to pass. But after June the "book tour" will be over and I'll be back to "blogging" about my "fave" fork! Don't worry! In the meantime, bear with me. I thank you for your patience in these troubling times of today.

I Am Aware

I am aware that "So you please do not forget" is an unpleasing construction. But in another way it is pleasing!

O, People of Nantucket, Take Heart

I have not forgotten you, people of Nantucket! So you please do not forget to go see the short film "The Pipe," which I am honored to say was based on a short story from my first book. It's playing at your film festival! And I have word from the director that he will be attending. I fear his little heart will be broken if no one shows up to ask him probing questions after the screenings. I would be there myself, but I'm going to be cutting a rug with Amanda Stern at her reading series in NYC, along with Pia Z. Ehrhardt (check out her windshield!) and Antoine Wilson. By the way, I have tried to recommend Amanda's novel THE LONG HAUL in three separate newspaper interviews, but that part seems to get cut out every time. So I'll recommend it again right now. Also, "cutting a rug" is the wrong expression, but I'm going to let it stand. It sounds colorful!

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Lots of Fun

We had lots of fun in Chattanooga. The bookstore is very nice, go check it out! After the reading, Theresa and I walked up the street to see a movie. We haven't been out to a movie in a while, so that was exciting. The film had been billed in respectable newspapers as a sleek, stylish entertainment, a cinematic bonbon tossed off with elegant insouciance by a master director. But watch out! Those descriptions are a trick! If you translate them out of reviewer-ese, they mean, "Eh." On the plus side, we were early, so I got to watch Theresa play Ms. Pac-Man in the lobby. She was on fire, I'm telling you! On fire! She was eating up those little marbles and when the monsters started chasing her, she was like, "Who cares? Oh yeah, monster, come and get me!" And then she'd turn around and make those monsters into frowning blue ghosts and she'd eat them like popcorn. Oh, yeah! If you are a monster, you don't want a piece of Theresa. She'll get you. She's a Ms. Pac-Man wizard, a champ. Well, anyway, it was quite a night.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

The Daily Show Is Inside My Head, Man

Hey, remember when I reported on Christopher Hitchens's fondness for Johnnie Walker Black and he mentioned it on THE DAILY SHOW just a few days later? Well, the other night, when Paul Rudd was on, and Jon Stewart was listing his many accomplishments, he jokingly referred to Mr. Rudd as an "inventor." And this was just AFTER I remarked upon Mr. Rudd's uncanny resemblance to Alexander Graham Bell on the "blog." Now these first two instances are obviously flukes, requiring some stretching of the imagination to see any real connection... OR ARE THEY? Tonight, during a little sponsored plug for a cell phone company, THE DAILY SHOW presented what they called their "overheard non-sequitur of the day." Okay, that's just freaky! Remember THIS ("click" here) "overheard non-sequitur" of the day? Freaky, man! Freaky! I'm freaking out! It's like I'm that guy in THE DEAD ZONE (pictured), if all he could see was the future of THE DAILY SHOW. Freaky!

The "Blog" Is Always Wrong

Hey, remember when I said that the ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY review of my book was not on the "web"? Well, now it is. ("Click" here to enjoy.) Why is the "internet" so malleable and strange? It makes me nervous! In other Pendarvis scuzzy self-congratulation news, I would like to tell the world that the new issue of Wholphin has a little nugget from yours truly buried deep within. Gosh, I'm just like Walt Whitman with all my celebrating myself! Hooray! Now for a shower. (P.S. I love Walt Whitman! I am not trying to drag him down to my level.)

Another Reading

Hello, everyone! Do you have friends and relatives in Chattanooga? Neither do I! That's why I'm so scared about my reading tomorrow night at Rock Point Books. Deep in my heart I'm afraid nobody cares. I'll look like a big sap and the staff will sadly shake their heads and try to make me feel better. Come out and prove me wrong! They seem like nice people and their store looks intriguing on the "internet." Okay! Let's have a reading!

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

The Greatest Thing That Phil Oppenheim Has Ever Seen

Had a nice long lunch with Phil Oppenheim today, over at Manuel's Tavern. We talked about many things dear to our hearts - Don Rickles, for example. Then Phil told me about "the greatest thing [he has] ever seen." It seems that a couple of years ago he witnessed a panel discussion. Sounds dry, I suppose! But wait until you hear who was on the panel: Norm Crosby, George Carlin, Phyllis Diller, Shelley Berman, Shecky Greene, and Jerry Lewis! When Phil got back to the office he emailed me a "link" that corroborated his memories of the greatest thing he has ever seen, because it really just seems too good to be true, so wonderful in fact that Phil could not trust his own memory.

James Whorton, Jr.'s C-Spandemonium!

Welcome once more to James Whorton, Jr.'s C-Spandemonium! Today, Mr. Whorton's observations do not come from any of the C-Span networks! Don't be alarmed! They come from reading the newspaper, which is almost like watching C-Span! So we feel that is close enough for a "blog." Here, then, is Mr. Whorton's report for the day, from his local newspaper in upstate New York: "This morning in the paper they published a list of the most popular dog names in New York State. They can do this because in New York, all dogs have to be signed up with the government. [My wife] thinks this is good, but it feels totalitarian to me. Anyway, there are 20 licensed dogs named Bono in NY state."

Tuesday, June 05, 2007


Mr. Ward called me after Tom Poston died, upset by an obituary he saw in a major newspaper. It described Mr. Poston as "the pasty faced comedian." "This is his obituary!" Mr. Ward said. "They can't give the guy a break?" Well, today the New York Times referred to the face of Jerry Mathers as "half owlish, half doughy." It was not an obituary, thank goodness! (Mr. Mathers famously has been the subject of premature obituaries, and I do not wish this to be mistaken for such.) But still... my goodness! There must be better ways of describing a person's face. Moving on, the article mentions the play BOEING, BOEING in which Mr. Mathers appeared onstage with Tony Dow, who of course played his brother on LEAVE IT TO BEAVER. I already knew about this reunion from reading Mr. Mathers's autobiography for work (long story. On an unrelated note, Mr. Mathers also plays a key role in the title novella of my new book). I have always wanted to mention here at the "blog" the fascinating fact that JERRY Mathers took the JERRY Lewis role (from the film version of BOEING, BOEING) and TONY Dow took the TONY Curtis role! Wow! Stuff like that really gets me worked up! Crazy! But I have never had any "internet" corroboration... until now. Finally, speaking of Jerry Lewis, everyone should be aware that the second box set of Martin & Lewis films comes out today.

19,000 People Beat Me To It

I was going to call that last "post" "'Blog' Meridian," but I did the "Google" on that phrase and got 19,000 hits. And read them all!

I Wonder!

I wonder if Cormac McCarthy has a "blog." Here's my guess: Yes!

Now I Seem Like a Crazy Person

That "hyperlink" to Ghost Rider isn't there now. But I swear it was! I swear it!

A Thing At Which to Look

I see they have the article about Sheri Joseph and myself from the Atlanta Journal Constitution on a "web" site now. Drink it in! Take note of the photo, in which I am either coughing up some phlegm or trying to engage Sheri Joseph in a boxing match. And Sheri, as she put it in a recent email, looks as if she is saying, "Get a load of THIS guy! Har har har!" Anyway, it's a very nice photo, really, attached to a kind and well written article. The story does misrepresent one thing about my past: I was not a "good natured slacker" in school, as the author speculates. I was an ill-tempered slacker. Ha ha! Just kidding! I was a bookworm, very studious. My false "vibe" here at the "blog" is just something I do to get "hep" with the young "punksters." Okay, one other oddity, of a technical nature: When they mention my ill-fated Cartoon Network movie, the word "movie" is "hyperlinked" to a "web" site for the Nicolas Cage epic GHOST RIDER... thus seeming to imply, erroneously, that I or Cartoon Network had something to do with that film. But this is not the case. I have nothing against Mr. Ghost Rider! I used to read his comic book when I could work up the nerve. He scared me because of his devilish associations. Then again, so did Hot Stuff, The Li'l Devil. As I have implied earlier in this "post," I was a sensitive little fellow at the time.

Very Clever, Mr. Osborne!

So now that guy says he's not Robert Osborne. But isn't that just what Robert Osborne would say?

My Qualifications

Okay! Just in case I do have the attention of Robert Osborne, as my demented speculations suggest, I am going to lay out very clearly all the reasons I should be a guest programmer on TCM. 1) My Cartoon Network project has gone belly up, so there is no conceivable conflict of interest within the Turner empire. 2) I watch TCM all the time, as evidenced - to give but one paltry example - by numerous "blog" references to Guy Kibbee. 3) I often write "literature" in which movies play a role. For example, one character in the title novella of my first book has a nightmare about Dean Martin. In real life, I once had a nightmare after watching the Martin film ADA on TCM... but my nightmare involved not Mr. Martin, but Wilfrid Hyde-White (pictured), who played the villain in the piece. Do you hear me? I actually have nightmares about Wilfrid Hyde White! See? Just the fact that I know who Wilfrid Hyde-White IS should get me a spot on TCM! 4) I have written about movies in a magazine. 5) I don't know if you are located in Los Angeles or New York, but you can set up a "shoot" on June 14th because I have most of that day free in New York... or the same goes for June 22nd in L.A. Great! So have your people call my people and we'll get this thing rolling!


Wait a darn minute! Do you think that the person ("Bob") who left me the note about cigarette holders could be... ROBERT OSBORNE? Probably not, but gee! Well, I'm going to pretend it was him. Get it, though? The commenter seems to know a lot about classic movie stars... and he's kind of secretive about his identity... It all adds up! Well, my notion makes me happy.

Monday, June 04, 2007

The Sidewalk

So Theresa and I were walking down the very same sidewalk tonight on which we recently saw someone smoking a cigarette and eating a strawberry ice cream cone at the same time. This time we saw a woman walking a shiny purebred dog and pushing a baby stroller. But there was no baby in the stroller! There was only a doll... a baby doll... FACE DOWN! And no child within several blocks! No child anywhere, as far as we could see! It was creepy! We still can't figure it out.

The Clearing

I'm not aware that I ever expressed any real surprise about cigarette holders or speculated in any way on the predilections of anyone who used a cigarette holder, as the fellow in question seems to imply. I just thought it was interesting how once I began to notice the habit, I saw it everywhere. Hope this clears everything up!

Cigarette Holders Are Back, I Guess

So... Some guy has taken a "blogspot" title similar to mine ( or such), and his entire "blog" seems to consist of one note to me, about my long defunct interest in cigarette holders. I guess it is my own fault for not having a "comments" place here at the "blog." But he's very kind to take an interest! And perhaps it's a grand idea... everyone who wants to comment on the "blog" can start his or her own "blog"! There must be a few bucks in it for me somewhere, perhaps a kickback from "blogspot." Here's his "blog" if you'd like to see it.

800th "Post" Marks Lowest Point For "Blog"

It turns out that the self-aggrandazing trifle entitled "Two New Reviews" was this "blog's" shameful 800th "post." We managed to inject a mild note of hope even into our wan 700th "post," but now we just don't know anymore. It has been all downhill since around # 500. Our 800th "post" was so weak that we've already had to augment it once and eat some of our words. Weak, Pendarvis! Sad and weak!

Aimlessness Is Not Cool

Contrary to what I claimed only moments ago, aimlessness is not cool. I believe what I was trying to get across is that any apparent aimlessness in my stories is masking or commenting on an aim, or so I think. Or what if I put it this way: "There's aim in my aimlessness." Then I would be paraphrasing Shakespeare, sort of! And as everyone knows, that would make me right.

Theresa Sure Does Love Potato Chips!

Yes she does.


I notice that I used the word "oblique" in a "post" yesterday and the adverb form of that same word in a "post" today. Also, when I was forced to start a "MySpace" page, I used the word "oblique" on that, too. This has all the makings of an awful trend and I'm putting my foot down right now.

Veronica Mars Brings People Together

I wanted to mention this in the last "post," but it was starting to feel too long. So: I sent Ms. Heather Havrilesky an email thanking her for what seemed to me a very fair review. She emailed me back and the next thing you know we were commiserating over the cancelation of VERONICA MARS like a couple of old chums! This is the power of the "internet" and I take back all the hateful things I've ever said about it. To paraphrase the fourth "blog"mandment, disagreement needn't be disagreeable! Let's all be friends!

Two New Reviews

Hi, everybody! My brother and Mark Childress have both written in to tell me about a nice mention of my new book in TIME OUT CHICAGO. TIME OUT CHICAGO wants people to stop thinking of me as a "stand-up comedian" (which technically I have never been, to my knowledge) and start taking me seriously! Darn it, they say, if this new book doesn't do the trick, nothing will (I'm paraphrasing). So, take that, people who accused me of being a stand-up comedian when my last book came out... who was that? ... oh, yeah! TIME OUT CHICAGO. Well, I'm just ribbing them very gently because I truly appreciate the nice mention and besides, it does seem to obliquely refer to their other review, so it's not like I'm "calling them out" or anything. I want to be friends with them! Speaking of which, a nice person named Ms. Havrilesky reviewed my book for Book Forum. Now Ms. Havrilesky didn't like EVERYTHING about the book, but I would say she seemed to relish enough of my saucy attitude to recommend it WITH SOME CAVEATS. And that's okay! In my opinion, she exaggerates the outlandishness of my characters, but it is something I've heard a lot, so maybe I am the one who is wrong! But if you concentrate on the positive things in the review - and choose, as I did, to interpret what she perceives as weaknesses as the towering strengths of a master author (I think "aimlessness" is cool, for example) - Ms. Havrilesky's review, at the very least, will make you curious about the book. And if you need a little help being pushed over the edge toward consumerism, why not check out the other reviews I've received: from ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY, also from THE BROOKLYN RAIL and a newspaper in San Diego and PUBLISHERS WEEKLY. Also, the Sunday Atlanta Journal-Constitution had some highly pleasant things to say about my writing in an interview/article about Sheri Joseph and myself. Or listen to me blather on a "podcast." Put them all in a hat and shake them up and the result, I believe, will make you interested. That is all I can hope for! I am just doing the best I can!

Sunday, June 03, 2007

This Is What I Look Like

This (pictured) is what I look like according to the people at Jamie Allen's "blog." Kind of like Max Von Sydow in one of his more harrowing performances for Ingmar Bergman! The fellow who sketched me also provides a report on my reading last night. It seems more or less accurate, except for the fact that I would ask everyone to "lie down," not "lay down," which is not very grammatical. As for my pronunciation of gazebo, the whole point of that little hiccup was that my brain suddenly went blank. Hasn't that ever happened to you? You see a word you have been saying for your entire life (although I do go for long stretches without saying "gazebo" out loud) and suddenly it seems unfamiliar and strange? Right? As for my exhortation to the "gentlemen" in the audience, I am not sure the reporter makes it clear that there were many women required to stand while men sat at their leisure (I'm looking at you, Phil Oppenheim!). Finally, on the subject of Helicopter Island (another reference in that report on Jamie Allen's "blog"): one attendee believed that my fictional character who mentions Helicopter Island was making an oblique reference to the TV show LOST. Not true! I wrote that story a long time before I had even seen an episode of LOST, perhaps before LOST was even on the air, and certainly before a ********* almost reached the island, which occurred only a few weeks ago. I hope this clears everything up! Thanks to everyone who came out to my reading. I will try to do better in the future!

Don't Forget, Robert Osborne!

Hey, Mr. Osborne, don't forget! We can be TV buddies and introduce movies together. Come on, hook me up! This has been your daily reminder, Robert Osborne!

McNeil's Movie Korner: The Dotage of Jeff McNeil

I accidentally missed the first forty minutes of DON'T MAKE WAVES, starring Tony Curtis and Claudia Cardinale (pictured), on TCM this morning. But I recalled that Jeff McNeil had planned to record it, so I felt happy and safe. I phoned Mr. McNeil, just to reassure myself that everything was going according to plan. "THE YELLOW LIGHT'S NOT ON!" Mr. McNeil screamed in my ear, via telephone. "THE YELLOW LIGHT'S NOT ON!" Yes, for the second time in just a few days, Mr. McNeil had neglected - for technical and personal reasons - to record a movie that no network in its right mind will ever show again. What is happening to Jeff McNeil? What is happening to us all?

Jeff McNeil's Island Breezes

Welcome once again to our most exotic regular feature, "Jeff McNeil's Island Breezes." Jeff McNeil writes in to say, "I'm never leaving my computer desk again. Ever. I've downloaded and used Google Earth. Amazing. I don't understand how this is possible. I can see the buildings and trees on Pitcairn Island - and it's an amazing zoom so you get a real feel for how isolated it is. It's a real introvert's adventure." Mr. McNeil is looking specifically at Oeno Island, which, like Henderson, is in the Pitcairn colony. Mr. McNeil is too busy with his imaginary island hopping to tell us about Oeno, but he directs us to what he considers an adequate Wikipedia entry on the subject. You're slipping, McNeil! Wikipedia is the coward's way out!

Saturday, June 02, 2007

The Influence of Yodeling on Cats

The yodeling of Jimmie Rodgers (not to be confused with the bluesman Jimmy Rogers) is the first music coming out of the "computer" that has made the cat stop and listen (not the cat that stared at the light fixture. The other cat). This has been one in our series of investigations of the influence of stuff.


I would like to thank everyone who worked so hard to make National Rewrite Your Novel Month such a rousing success. None of us actually accomplished anything, did we? But it sure is fun to try!

Chameleons to the Rescue

A gigantic art book is hard to read in bed. That's where MUSIC FOR CHAMELEONS by Truman Capote comes in! This handy little volume works wonders in just about any crisis, with bits as short and piquant as Mr. Capote himself, designed by experts to fit any mood. Buy one and stick it in your first aid kit today. This has been one in a series of tips to make your life better in this strange world we live in of modern times today.

Friday, June 01, 2007

You Shouldn't

I finished the book I was reading and it delivered on its promise. Now I am reading some essays about Mark Rothko in a book that reproduces some of his paintings. Why should you care? But this is what a "blog" is, I can't help it.

It Occurs To Me

It occurs to me based on the picture of Alexander Graham Bell that I "posted" earlier today - Paul Rudd could play him in a movie. Think about it!

I Almost Forgot

I almost forgot my daily plea to Robert Osborne, the genteel public face of the TCM network. I want to be your apprentice, Mr. Osborne! Not your successor!

Okay, Now I Do

Okay, now I DO have a MySpace page, but it's only to explain to people that I DON'T have a MySpace page. I hope everybody's happy!

I Do Not Have a MySpace Page

Word from Sheri Joseph about the AJC article coming out soon about both of us. She has seen a copy, and says there is one small error I need to correct. During the interview Sheri talked about spending all her time on her MySpace page. I guess it got turned around somehow, and apparently the article says that I spend all my time on MY MySpace page. But as longtime "blog" readers will appreciate, I do not and will never have a MySpace page! Sheri is afraid everyone will get angry looking for my nonexistent MySpace page and refuse to buy my book or something - like I have put one over on them! I would like to reassure Sheri that there are plenty of other reasons for people not to buy my book.

The Rubber Room

We are very proud of and excited for "Blog" Buddies Jon Langford and Kelly Hogan, both of whom - as we learned from a recent email - will soon get to perform onstage with Charley Pride (who we love here in the Pendarvis Building!) and Porter Wagoner (Hogan in her capacity as a member of Neko Case's band). It's all part of the upcoming Marty Stuart Late Night Jam at the world famous Ryman Auditorium! This brings to mind the fact that we've been meaning to recommend a CD - a Porter Wagoner compilation titled THE RUBBER ROOM. This is the sort of thing we usually keep close to our chests, recommending to only a few special friends... but that was ruined when they advertised my "fave" novel THE THIRD POLICEMAN by Flann O'Brien on the TV show LOST. Now I am given to understand that "information wants to be free," so I am going to go ahead and tell the world about Porter Wagoner's RUBBER ROOM. In fact, by an odd coincidence, I was thinking about emailing Hogan and asking her to consider covering the title track, yes, the titular "Rubber Room," but I was too tired. I believe this is the first time we have recommended a country album here at the "blog" since RUBY by Buck Owens. So take us seriously! Get "into" the Rubber Room today!

Talking Out Loud

Thanks to the power of the "internet," now you can hear me talk out loud if you are so inclined. They've added a "podcast" to that interview I told you about a couple of days ago. Listen to me give a "shout out" to "Blog Buddy" Jim Whorton. Listen to me opine with great fervor about the Gilmore Girls and other issues vital to our great nation we call home. Hey, if you come out to my reading tomorrow night, you can see what it's like when I talk right in front of you, all the pitiful faces I make and so on. Or just stay home and read the "blog." Or do something else you find enjoyable and leave me out of it entirely. It's all up to you!