Tuesday, March 12, 2013


When I woke up, the 12-word poem I wrote last night was still okay. And that was a good beginning. 

Yesterday the cold came back, along with the filing cabinet-grey sky. But today we awoke to snow, gobs and gobs of it, and still going. It is the best, biggest snow in a long time. 

This morning I crossed the park at dog hour, the time of morning when people make the rounds with their best friends. There was a lanky, loping woman with a lanky copper-colored dog. There was our squat neighbor in his woolen cap with his little dog. Squat, I thought, was just the word for him. It does not mean he is overweight, only indicates a certain circumference/height ratio. 

On the train, I read yet another review of George Saunders’ new collection of stories. The reviewer said some readers would already be familiar with Saunders' “gonzo ventriloquism,” and it struck me that I dislike the word gonzo a lot, and for me it doesn’t describe Saunders. I do like words that end in “-quism,” though. All two of them.

We saw “The Master” on Saturday and were underwhelmed. The cinematography was good. Each actor was impressive, but the chemistry between them and the story didn’t gel. It lacked the intensity you’d expect in a movie about a cult. The lost soul didn’t seem to need religion. It was unclear what the cult leader wanted in the lost soul, and he didn’t exercise real control over him. There were throwaway moments, like the party where the women were naked. To convey what? Lechery? Lasciviousness? Nowhere in sight! 

Add it to the list of big-promise underwhelmers we’ve seen lately: Les Miz, The Impossible, and, yes, Lincoln. Lincoln was the best of them, but dressed-up hokey celebrate America, if you ask me.


Kathleen said...

Haven't seen any of those films, yet. Just Argo and Silver Linings Playbook, and I liked both of those fine, as I could care about the people and the stories.

Just read 2 collections by Saunders and really enjoyed them. Funny, satiric in that real way that makes you look at the culture and weep, while laughing. And some powerfully moving pieces in 10th of December.

SarahJane said...

I'd like to see Argo, but there's one showing in town at 10.30 pm, which rules me out.

I love George Saunders. Haven't read the new stories, but I've read enough reviews now.

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