Utopian Turtletop. Monsieur Croche's Bête Noire. Contact: turtletop [at] hotmail [dot] com

Wednesday, June 01, 2005


A million blog-years ago my blog friend Corndog passed me this chain-post about books. I was tickled that he picked me, after having been antsy that other bloggers I like HADN’T, and then I thought, how pathetically junior high is that! Still, thanks Corndog. Sorry it’s taken me so long to get back to you.

You are stuck inside Fahrenheit 451. Which book would you be?

I’ve never read that book. Being stuck inside a book sounds very unpleasant. How would I move my arms to eat?

Have you ever had a crush on a fictional character?

No -- I tend to identify with the protagonist, like most readers, I assume. Sarah Shulman wrote a lesbian version of “On the Road” that never goes above 14th Street in Manhattan. She cribbed the title from a phrase from Kerouac’s book: “Girls, Visions and Everything.” She was identifying with the protagonist.

But a crush? That’s a pretty absurd question. I’ve had crushes -- my heart beat fast when SHE was in the room or on the phone, I got tongue-tied, I obsessed. Those reactions to a fictional character? I pity anybody who experiences THAT.

What is the last book you bought?

Franklin Bruno’s book on Elvis Costello’s “Armed Forces.” Because I was corresponding with Franklin, and because I knew I could pass the book along to someone else when I was done, and because I used to be a big Elvis C fan (“Elvis,” for me now, is Presley), and because it was only 10 bucks new. As it happens, I’m really enjoying it -- no surprise, wouldn’t have bought it if I didn’t think I would -- AND, it’s explaining to me in very sympathetic terms why I lost interest in Elvis C., and it may even be rekindling that interest.

What are you currently reading?

“Armed Forces” by Franklin, and “The Nashville Sound” by Paul Hemphill, a terrific book on country music from 1969 that I read 10 years ago or so.

Five books for your desert island cruise package.

I’m glad Corndog said “cruise package,” because those “desert island” questions are absurd and depressing and sadistic. So, for my CRUISE, I’ll take whatever I happen to be reading at the time, plus a book of poetry (probably selected Blake or “Leaves of Grass” or a good pocket-size anthology).

Who are you going to pass this slambook baton to and why? (only three people)

I’m sending it to only two: Devin Hurd. If anybody else wants it, they’re welcome to it. Devin seems like a nice guy and I’m curious to know more about his literary sensibility.

I’m also sending it to my friend Michael Barrish. Just because.

Now, I know, I know, the purpose of picking people is to cross-pollinate readerships. I’m sorry to be such a killjoy. If you want me to link to you, I would be happy to you. Just send me an email.
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