Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Faulkner's Grave II

I shouldn't even mention this here because I already mentioned it on twitter and lots more people read twitter than read this "blog" because nobody reads this "blog," but I had dinner with Jimmy Cajoleas and Bill Boyle a while back and Jimmy interviewed me for Lent Magazine with Bill piping in occasionally and you can read the interview now. It features TRUE FACTS about lots of your pals from the "blog." In order of appearance: Kelly Hogan, Bill Taft, Caroline Young, Dr. Theresa, Brian Halloran, Kent Osborne, Mark Osborne, Barry Mills, Tom Haney, Gus Jordan, Barry Hannah, Adam Muto, Pendleton Ward, Tom Franklin, my dad, and Chris Offutt. Don't you wonder what sartorial effect ON THE ROAD had on Chris Offutt? Well, now I am telling his beeswax in a public interview! Here is a picture Kent took of me at Faulkner's grave. I didn't like it because when I shrug disrespectfully at Faulkner's grave my fat cheeks puff out grotesquely but Pen said "it looks like an album cover" so everybody look at my fat cheeks. McNeil wrote me about that previous picture from Faulkner's grave: "Did Tom put his hair in curlers for that trip to Faulkner's grave?" No! Maybe a ghost was making it stand up. Speaking of which, I started to read ABSALOM, ABSALOM! and it's pretty great. (Ha ha, I just realized that the Bible story of Absalom has fateful hair in it though that is not what I meant. I meant ghosts. And Faulkner I guess.) I have been terrified of ABSALOM, ABSALOM! for years, so I'm surprised to find myself breezing through it - or, if that is an exaggeration, so thoroughly engaged. There's lots of stuff like this: "his very body was an empty hall echoing with sonorous defeated names; he was not a being, an entity, he was a commonwealth. He was a barracks filled with stubborn back-looking ghosts..." So that's pretty all right, huh? And I'd like to remind all the exclamation point haters that there is an exclamation point in the title! But Square Books just called to tell me that the new reprint of ANCIENT EVENINGS is out, so now if I wanted I could read about the hero eating bat poop. But I think I've made a commitment. I'm only on page 17 of ABSALOM, ABSALOM! but it feels like page 50. Hey, speaking of Bill Taft (see above; ha ha! I know you don't exist, so why am I telling you to "see above"?) I got my print quarterly from the Los Angeles Review of Books in the mail yesterday. It's the first issue and I have three very short stories in there and one of them which lasts for two sentences MIGHT be a SOMEWHAT TRUE STORY of Bill Taft in which the character's name is "Bill" but it's fiction so forget what I just said.