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“it’s really too bad that so much crumby stuff is a lot of fun sometimes”

January 29, 2010

COLD and NICE are my photos.

the bottom photos:
EXIT (by atlantic treefox)
ME & YOU (by marchorowitz)
RING BELL (by gradiate)
MESSIEURS (by intransient)

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

today, word-based favorites.

this morning, i got to thinking about JD salinger’s passing away, and now louis auchincloss.  i was an american studies major in college, and i studied works of fiction by both of these men quite closely.  like everyone else, JD salinger’s short stories and ‘the catcher in the rye’ certainly had a profound effect on my life when i was younger.  after i graduated from college, i went on a real auchincloss bender, reading many of his novels and admiring his ability to be a lawyer and an author, encouraging both his analytical and creative sides.  

and then i got to thinking about other american authors that i treasure, whose work has influenced me in one way or another.  and i immediately thought of joan didion.  aside from salinger. auchincloss, and john cheever, joan didion is someone whose writing has profoundly changed the way i think about language, ideas, and my place in the world. 

so in lieu of sharing my favorite salinger or auchincloss story with you today, i thought i’d leave you with a favorite piece of writing from joan didion.  “goodbye to all that” – a piece that i’ve read many, many times.  i hope you enjoy it. 

have a good weekend, i’ll see you here next week.

17 Comments
  1. January 29, 2010 8:48 am

    I need to read ’the catcher in the rye’…
    Nice collection of photos here.
    Happy weekend!

  2. January 29, 2010 9:09 am

    thank you so much for that didion link, brian.
    have a great weekend!

  3. January 29, 2010 9:13 am

    good words all around. jd’s passing makes me nostalgic for a younger me… when *big* books were still unread and all they had to offer still lay ahead of me. i wish i could re-read ‘catcher’ for the first time ever again… if you know what i mean.

  4. January 29, 2010 9:46 am

    i love these photos :) & jd salinger has always been a favorite of mine :)

  5. January 29, 2010 10:11 am

    what a delightful post. thanks for sharing a bit about your literary influences. and these photos, so good. one of my favorite posts from you, brian! happy friday! i’m off to read your link…

  6. January 29, 2010 10:53 am

    the nostalgic feel of your photos makes me want to dive into those moments. and thank you so much for that link. i had never read any didion and you left me wanting to read more.

  7. January 29, 2010 12:46 pm

    Lovely post.
    The words, the images…so good.
    I think it’s time I dove into The Year of Magical Thinking again.
    Happy Weekend, Brian.

  8. January 29, 2010 1:00 pm

    Terrific post, Brian. The theatre company I worked for was considering producing her memoir The Year of Magical Thinking, that’s how I was turned onto her work. She’s an excellent writer. Thanks for the link!

  9. January 29, 2010 2:07 pm

    Funny coincedence, I too had the same major with an emphasis on art, history and english…this is an excellent post especially the article by joan didion. Not only was it these two men that past away yesterday, but Howard Zinn did as well. 3 men that contributed a lot and their work will be remembered for sure.

  10. January 29, 2010 5:13 pm

    It seems like the death of an era, with Salinger, Auchincloss, and Zinn gone in the same week. I love that Didion piece, too. In Slouching Towards Bethlehem, it’s immediately preceded by “Los Angeles Notebook,” so that packs a powerful one-two punch for me.

  11. Trish permalink
    January 29, 2010 7:55 pm

    Hi Brian – A friend recommended “goodbye to all that” when I was considering moving to LA from NY. I think of it during times of transition. Thanks for reminding me. I have not read any Louis Auchincloss, but like those creative-analytical types too. Thanks for sharing as always!

  12. January 30, 2010 9:02 pm

    Thank you so much for the Didion link. I’ll savor that story later tonight, by candlelight.

  13. February 1, 2010 5:06 pm

    I agree on Didion– she had a very profound effect on me when I first moved to New York and I think of that essay almost daily. Thank you for this post, Brian!

    My thoughts:

    http://somuchtofallinlovewith.blogspot.com/2008/11/slouching-towards-bethlehem.html

  14. February 2, 2010 12:19 am

    what a great post. here’s to all the great american authors!

  15. February 5, 2010 9:06 pm

    God I love Joan Dideon, read and re-read that essay when I was moving away from New York. And ‘Catcher’ brings up the same nostalgia. Must be the fact that I was an American Studies minor too. :)

  16. Sophie permalink
    May 24, 2010 2:43 pm

    I’ve been going through your blog these last few days, and this mix of photos I find particularly beautiful together. Thank you for the inspiration.

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