Saturday, January 17, 2004

We don't want to talk about it

We don't get cable and we don't listen to talk radio (except for the KAZI breakfast club on Friday and sometimes Frank Garrett during the week and except for Sam and Bob on KVET when they're not talking sports or something else idiotic). We don't watch TV news. We say we're going to stop reading about various political topics, but we do subscribe to three newspapers and several newsmagazines and we do read almost everything. We just don't talk about it. We can read news in the morning over breakfast so that the rest of the day blots things out. We can't read about news in the evening or it might spoil sleep. Economist pieces about the economic policies of obscure corners of the world known only to current or former stamp-collectors will sometimes induce sleep; last night a piece comparing translations of Proust worked well. I bought my a la recherche at a 24-hour newsstand that specialized in girlie mags, sports tip sheets, and newspapers from around the world. Tonight the piece on Don Quixote will probably work well also. The P. J. O'Rourke piece on candidates' speechifying styles is very funny and has a running tagline that goes something like "always excepting Al Sharpton." It and the piece called "I was Kim Jong II's Cook" alone are worth the price of the magazine (maybe that's why they're not on line). It was amazing that K. remembered the first name of Madame Chiang Kai-shek without hesitation. I remembered that she was one of the Soong sisters. My Weekly Reader, thou hast much to answer for. I love this article: "The cold war world according to 'My Weekly Reader." Atoms for Peace, anyone?


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