Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Anne Lamott Comes To Town And I Get Surprised By Life

So last night was Anne Lamott night at the First United Church of Oak Park. Unfortunately, I missed the first 20 minutes because I'm still not used to the fact that it can take 50 minutes to drive 15 miles in damn-blasted city-land. Bygones.

Upon entering, I noticed two things: This was a pleasant church (with a pipe-organ and real live pews!). Also, 90% of the audience was middle-aged women.

Now, I have nothing but goodwill towards middle-aged women. My mom is a middle-aged woman. And she's a really good mom. But I've never actually met an Annie Lamott fan who was a middle-aged woman. Everyone fan of Miss Lamott I know is either a college-age/20-somethingish, or has the last name Doughty. So basically, I expected a bunch of people my age, a smattering of elderly church goers, and the Doughty's. Instead, it was mostly just The View x 100, only with lots more gray hair and Bush-hating.

So now I need to go sit in a corner and rethink life a bit. Because if I was wrong about this, I could be wrong about everything else there is to be wrong about in life plus infinity.

Oh, and P.S., Miss Lamott was very funny, very frank, and very much in her element as a storyteller. As an audience, we were very well behaved, I think. There were plenty of hushed silences, hearty chuckles and bouts of applause to be had. Also, her voice is a little bit nasally. And finally, she signed books. Which was weird.

The End

Sunday, April 23, 2006

When blogs sound like not-blogs, aka Hollywood films.

From the Chicago Tribune:

He labeled his students "criminals," saying they stole from teachers, dealt drugs in the hallways, had sex in the stairwells, flaunted their pregnant bellies and tossed books out windows. He dismissed their parents as unemployed "project" dwellers who subsist on food stamps, refuse to support their "baby mommas" and bad-mouth teachers because their no-show teens are flunking.

He took swipes at his colleagues, too--"union-minimum" teachers, literacy specialists who "decorate their office door with pro-black propaganda," and security officers whose "loyalty is to the hood, not the school."

Is this real news, or a review of that one Antonio Banderas/Michelle Pfeiffer/Edward James Olmos miracle-worker-in-the-inner-city movie?

Pick before you click!

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Oops! All Goths!

....And we're back.

There's a fantastic article by Jonathan Ames in the latest issue of Spin Magazine about his experience at Gothicfest 2005 (held [somewhere] in the great Chicago suburbs). It's funny and articulate and insightful and everything else your college professor used to say when he talked about Anne Lamott. Or my college professor. Or whoever. I forget.

Just go read it. The Yeah Yeah Yeahs are on the cover and it starts on page 64. Don't actually buy the magazine; it sort of sucks. But go read the piece. At like, you know, Borders or whatever. Or whoever. I forget.