How False Statements are Undermining America
from Martha Stewart to Bernie Madoff
James B. Stewart
We live in an era of truthiness and alternative facts. That makes me wonder if ether the title or the cover image of this book will be recognized by all but a narrow, possibly aging, swath of the public.
For those who don’t know the author, James B. Stewart has been found between hard covers for just about 25 Continue reading
What should we make of best-selling books bearing cautionary author’s notes?
Under other circumstances I might not be diverted to pondering such a question. But the 45th President of the United States was sworn in the other day and he pledged to “unite the civilized world” in removing “radical Islamic Continue reading
I don’t always interact with the popular culture on a timely basis. This year, though, I find myself hiding in best-selling books. I seem to do that every winter but this year, with the extra time I’ve gained from a career interruption, it seems the only thing I’m capable of.
Off to the library I went, intent on stocking up on the light stuff. Among my haul was a new, for me, writer. That makes me clueless since Amazon says he’s the #17 author based Continue reading
Dinner with Edward: A Story of an Unexpected Friendship
In a former life we’d play the film pitch game. You know that one. You describe a recent (or yet unmade) film in terms of existing films. Allegedly it’s how business is done in Hollywood where seeing every movie ever made is evidently a requirement for employment.
You can do the same thing with books. Witness: the Continue reading
The Year in music: A Titular Playlist
It’s time for my annual listing of the songs from which I borrowed my post titles. And in keeping with an old C-90 era custom I’ve also provided a Spotify playlist.
This year, I toyed with the idea of adding a blurb to each song listed below. But I think some things ought to just speak for themselves. These are all really great albums, Continue reading
Exuberance: The Passion for Life
Kay Redfield Jamison
Here’s a head-scratching editorial proposition for you: much of the psychological literature is about depressed states. Our author suggests that going back to the time of the ancient Greeks, melancholy and other less-sunny moods have dominated thinking about, and interest in, mental health. So why not examine the opposite end of the spectrum?
The short answer was given in the first sentence: there’s a Continue reading
Regarding the Pain of Others
I have said before that I have a dead spot in my brain when it comes to that iconic triumvirate of 60s writers, Didion, Vidal and Sontag, You may recall that I came up goose eggs when I ventured beyond Didion’s masterwork into Continue reading