Hot Town, Summer In The City [with update]
In other news:
-Kant's first Kritik has a testy edge that surprises me. "Look, it's just irresponsible to prove that our logic and our experience have different justifications and to stop there--how dare you people continue being so unsystematic!"
-Classical Persian percussion works a tight and grandiose 6/4, and if I'm ever presented at court, that's the rhythm I want to accompany me.
-If you're gay-friendly and like to sing, go to Marie's Crisis Bar on Christopher St., west of 7th, where a pianist and regulars (and staff!) belt out show tunes. Audience participation stoutly encouraged.
-A hard lesson learned: if, once you have completed spring cleaning, you learn that your facade is due for update, cultivate contacts with the work crew to know when a thick coat of dust is a possibility.
-Don Herzog of Left2Right writes some pretty great political history of the Revolutionary debates in England; his Poisoning the Minds of the Lower Orders (1998) is rich with archival material and historical context, and yet it keeps the modern-day importance of the arguments he rehearses firmly in mind. One sees in this book what attracted him to blogging, and yet I sometimes also see so many voices present in his own mind that I wonder that he needed seeing them echoed out in comments.
[Update: Prof. Herzog points out in email that his book does not have much in the way of archival material, to which I must respond that his primary source citations range awfully broad and that letters and parliamentary records, never cited as "qtd in" somewhere, can tend to overwhelm the poor grad student at the beginning of a dissertation. In other words, if he didn't do archival work, he gave a very good impression of having done so, and I'd like to learn that trick.]
-The dead-mouse smell in the elevator having abated, now--and by now I mean yesterday and today--it smells unmistakably of goat. I remain perplexed.
-Academic librarians are the shit. Particularly on the off-season. I am continually floored by their intelligence, generosity, curiosity, and sheer friendliness. I declare June the Flirt With Your Academic Librarian Month. Let's put sexiness back into the archives, and not just between Sa-Si!
-American Apparel may have nice t-shirts, but their swimwear is crap.
-My current thesis advisor, the most important of the three iterations who preceeded him, is probably moving to another university. Yay, free movement of labor!
-Oh, and I don't really mind so much that Amnesty International abused a simile when calling attention to GITMO as "the gulag of our times." It seems to me that the debate that this word-choice has provoked represents more public thought about the legality (or non) of this facility than has been allowable for some time--and that therefore AI managed to create an argument that should ultimately be beneficial.
-Once the TPMcafe gets over its cuteness, once its posters begin to realize that longer front-page posts are more amenable to the blog-format, and once its commentors realize that their opinions aren't gospel, it should be a fairly interesting place to hang out.
-I've finally come to terms with my gruesome technological gap and am looking for solutions. Anyone know how best to transfer some two-hundred dubbed cassettes to digital? (Yes, go ahead and make fun of me if you must.)
-I've also finally accepted the embarassing, drunken footage of myself that has occasioned raised eyebrows among the New York 1-watching book-vendors in my neighborhood. I'm somewhere on this site; let's agree on my identity as the hottest contestant. (Warning: the link has audio.)
So. These are some of the things I've been up to. I haven't mentioned the sublime experience of grilling steak on a penthouse terrace, the thrill of watching seeds sprout from an old gift-card, the cross-cultural pleasure of eating a Philly cheesesteak--with Swiss cheese, tomatoes, and lettuce--from the USA #1 Deli, run entirely by Yemese immigrants...
New York. I love you.