Farch: the mythical month invented by Tony Perkins long ago when Red Herring missed a month and he decided to combine February and March — which in New England is the nadir, the pits, the lowest point of the annual cycle when the blizzards roll through, then the winds follow, the landscape turns grey, and slowly, as St. Pat’s draws nearer, the dog shit starts to surface through the grey snow banks.
- Red Sox Equipment truck left for Fort Myers — this is good. There are two halves to the year: the baseball half and the non-baseball half. Truck Day is my personal Groundhog Day and now, with some luck, I’ll be blogging about the blooming of the crocuses, the planting of the sugar peas, and even — dare I tempt the gods — the launching of the boat for some clamming.
- Reading. I’ve been busy on the Kindle and in print.
- The Best Short Stories of Mark Twain: worth a read, definitely worth a read. How these escaped me is a mystery, but it takes a strong sense of humor to make a reader laugh out loud more than 100 years later. I’m reading the Modern Library edition edited by Lawrence Berkove.
- Istanbul: Memories of a City, Orhan Pamuk won Turkey’s only Nobel Prize in Literature in 2006. This memoir of growing up in Istanbul introduced me to him. I will definitely visit his novels next. It has been the perfect coda to the recent Turkey expedition.
- Europe Central, William Vollman. Lyrical history of the Eastern Front in WW II as seen through the eyes of various luminaries from the artist Kathe Kollwitz, the composer Dmitri Shostakovich to the Wehrmacht General Freidrich Paulus.
- The Book of Basketball, Bill Simmons. I couldn’t finish it, but the beginning is great as he relives the glory dynasties of the Boston Celtics as only a true Masshole of my generation could. The rest of it — especially his “what-if” scenarios are confusing and indulgent.
- Baseball America: monthly rag out of Durham, NC devoted to inside-baseball and minor league prospects. Feeding the inner baseball geek.
- Watching. Lots of art film. In the past couple weeks ….
- Tropical Malady: Apichatpong Weerasethakul, aka “Joe.” Beautiful, strange, mystical Thai film.
- Pickpocket: Jia Zhang-Ke. mid-90s film about a doomed pickpocket. Amazing flick. Sino-philes need to see this.
- Crimson Gold, Jafar Panahi. Iranian flick, written by the Iranian master Abbas Kiarostami.
That’s it. Lots of things happening at work, still engaged with the church thing, thinking about social devices, emerging market internet usage behavior, censorship issues in Iran and China …. the usual and not enough time to blog about it all cogently.