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Reading For Your Thursday Afternoon Coffee

If you read nothing else on this list,

read this article on why we swear. It's f-ing brilliant!

Norman Mailer has been hospitalized and reportedly isn't doing well. Though in critical care after surgery for a collapsed lung, with his children sitting vigil, he apparently still wants to thumb wrestle. That last part makes me smile.


Kim Masters from Slate writes a piece on what's wrong with George Clooney and why his latest film Michael Clayton came in fourth at the box office. A "top producer" in Hollywood comments that Clooney has made bad decisions as a movie star because he follows the projects he's interested in, not what the audience is necessarily interested in. Masters points out that you can apparently make bad decisions as a movie star and still win Oscars and have a villa in Italy. Take that, money-grubbing, soulless producer!

Here's a worrisome article reminding us that fiction is in dire cultural straits. A number of authors are quoted in the piece -- but here's what Philip Roth had to say about the difference between now and back when he started writing:

"There were a number of serious critics that was much greater than now. The number of serious readers was much greater than now. The number of distractions was much fewer than now. "The screen has come to dominate. It began with the movie screen, then the television screen and then the computer screen. Against these screens, the printed page doesn't have a chance."

The thing is, I'm afraid that Roth is all to right. Ugh.

Neighborhood video store catering to the cineaste amongst us, Citizen Video , is hosting another movie trailer night at the Whistle Stop Bar in South Park tonight. This time they're showing horror movie trailers - the good and the bad - from the 70's and 80's. Showtime is 9 pm but the whiskey starts flowing much earlier.


I have a few more things for you this afternoon, but I have to produce some radio for a minute. Be right back....