July 26, 2024

To Do: Lament, Pretend We're as Literate as New York, Listen to Rock Inspired by Megaman, et. al.

As The St. Paul Pioneer Press informed us on Sunday, Ruminator, the tenacious independent bookstore on Grand Ave, closed yesterday after a Sunday "wake" during which founder and owner David Unowsky apparently laughed and cried. This is sad. But it had been limping along for months and it was only a matter of time. The store had a good run and inspired a new clatch of bookstore entrepeneurs determined to learn from Unowsky's admitted mistakes.

Reporter Mary Ann Grossman takes the pulse of the local lit scene in "Getting a read on the Twin Cities" in which she fails to mention the inestimable contributions of my own place of employment or that of any other regional publisher. Sigh. We're used to it.

Check out how this chronology of Minnesota's literary community begins:

First B. Dalton bookstore in the United States opens in Southdale Shopping Mall

Yes, that's apparently where it all started.

Of course, we all know that New York is where shit is happening. Shit is always happening in New York. We have nothing on them. That's where n+1 is, after all. I want to subscribe to anything that denounces Eggers and his clacque and allows into print paragraphs like:

With the emergence of the ridiculous Dale Peck, the method of Wieseltier’s literary salon reached its reductio ad absurdum. Peck smeared the walls with shit, and bankrupted their authority for all time to come. So many forms of extremism turn into their opposite at the terminal stage. Thus The New Republic’s supposed brief for dry, austere, high-literary value—manifesting itself for years in a baffled rage against everything new or confusing—led to Peck’s auto-therapeutic wetness (as self-pity is the refuge of bullies) and hatred of classic modernism (which, to philistines, will always be new and confusing).

In George W. Bush, we have a president for whom reading a teleprompter seems to be a physical exertion. Each line accomplished brings out a panting breath of release. His best trait is his doggedness. Another man would have realized his failings and tried to do something about them. In W., his indifference to his deficiencies, his shameless attempts to do things for which he is unfitted—e.g. read, speak, lead a political community of any size—are, alongside his noble birth, his main strengths.

If the current state of literature causes you to despair, then go to the Triple Rock on August 9th to hear The Powerups play "high-energy, rocked-out, original arrangements of theme music from early arcade, Nintendo, and Commodore 64 games." The music based off of the Labrynth from The Legend of Zelda is neat. [When I was twelve I made it to Level 6 of the original Legend of Zelda without picking up my sword.]

Posted by Jason at July 26, 2024 12:42 PM

I dunno nuthin 'bout no literature or nuthin', but that there band at the T-rock sounds fun! And B. Dalton started here? Whoa.

Posted by: Andy at July 28, 2024 01:22 AM
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