Monday, January 08, 2007


I haven't been blogging lately as I have been trying to finish my book. The end is in sight.
On Boxing Day we went up to Bloor West Village to buy our Christmas cards for next year. Fifty per cent off Hallmark cards. I've also been reading quite a lot. I read "Hardcore Troubadour - The Life and Near Death of Steve Earle" by Lauren St John. A remainder-bin hardback bargain for $4.49 CDN. Not much more than the price of week-end newspaper. The fate of all authors. The book is sympathetic to Steve Earle, although no hagiography. It is hard to like a man who is abusing every substance known to man [and some you've never heard of]. On balance if you like Steve Earle's music it is probably best not to read this book.
I've just finished "The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid" by Bill Bryson. Thirty per cent off at Chapters, additional ten per cent with iREWARDS card. Heavy discount. The fate of all authors. This is a potboiler to keep his publisher happy with much evidence of third-party padding. He's still in love with the 'F' word. Bryson dropped out of University it seems but, in this day and age, no impediment to his becoming Chancellor of Durham University, my old college. Money conquers all.
I've also been listening to an audiobook of Garrison Keillor doing his live Lake Wobegon skits on Prairie Home Companion. I am struck by the similarities between Bryson and Keillor: midwest whimsy right down to the jokes about Lutherans. Funny I find I am nostalgic about a past I never knew. Is this why I am spending my declining years here in North America?
Last Friday night to Hugh's Room, on Roncevalles, for "Girls play the Boys" concert. Mostly girl folkies doing male songs. Exceptional standard with many different acts.

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