April 7, 2015 § Leave a comment

Whenever I fragrant coffee drink,
I on the generous Frenchman think,
Whose noble perseverance bore,
The tree to Martinico’s shore.

– Charles Lamb


Weekend Reading – No, You Are Not That Hip

April 3, 2015 § Leave a comment

locust_street_2013Okay, this list of top twenty hipster cities… first of all, West Des Moines is a somewhat tony suburb of Des Moines and no, it is not hipster. That ratio of cafes to residents must include Starbucks located inside grocery stores. Oddly, the East Des Moines Village, a neighborhood inside Des Moines proper, is actually pretty hipsterific.

Here, check out the East Des Miones Village.

Remember when Starbucks was a place to hang out? When it aspired to be a neighborhood coffee place? Now they’re building infrastructure to not just get you out of the door more quickly, but to even keep you out of the store altogether.

‘Kant is a moron,’ says graffiti on Kant’s old home. I think that’s a little extreme. Maybe ‘Kant is unnecessarily obscure.’

I always thought I was sort at the a– end of Generation X, but maybe I’m wrong. But really, I shouldn’t take the word of any blog managed by Chris Cillizza. Anyone else think he’s kind of the love child of David Broder and Thomas Friedman?

Weekend Reading – Camus Sends His Regrets

March 27, 2015 § Leave a comment

Albert CamusThe day Albert Camus was supposed to meet George Orwell for coffee… but then didn’t.

How are you celebrating the 60th anniversary of Howl?

March 1, 2015 § Leave a comment


January 15, 2015 § Leave a comment


‘Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy’ At The Hill Center

January 13, 2015 § Leave a comment

Last Thursday, the Hill Center showed the first two episodes of the 1978 BBC miniseries, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy.

I read the book once, years ago. And I did see this miniseries, though many years ago and not at an age old enough to entirely understand. And I loved the recent movie.

But this is the difference between a 2+ hour movie and a six episode series. Rather like comparing the Keira Knightley Pride Prejudice with the Jennifer Ehle and Colin Firth epics. The first one had its not insignificant charms, but they’re such different animals, it’s wrong to compare.

The host of this showing told us a lovely little gobbet about the production. He said that Alec Guinness was not very good at memorizing his lines and he sat down with the screenwriter and John Le Carre to systematically reduce the number of his lines.

The main joys are seeing things without the shorthand. The movies depend on narrative shorthand, but this can take it’s time. It’s not a long novel, so by making a 5 hour or so long version, the production team is able to less dense in the information it imparts in every scene and to dish it out very slowly and build characters over greater time. Again, less shorthand.

Anyway… episodes three and four will be shown Thursday. I’ll be there.

January 10, 2015 § Leave a comment


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