Saturday, March 3, 2012

Wooden Teeth & Romantic Scandals

The first portion of this blog entry is reprinted from a blog entry in May 2009.

I’ve been listening to an unabridged audio presentation of P. J. O’Rourke on The Wealth of Nations. It appears to be a relatively brief overview of that rather hefty tome by Adam Smith. O’Rourke is a satirist, libertarian and economic conservative who hails originally from Ohio. His early writings appeared in the National Lampoon, where he helped launch the careers of John Belushi and Chevy Chase.

To be quite frank, the book has not been a compelling read, but I’ve hung in there and there are some good sentences. And it is a much more entertaining book than the tedious nine hundred-plus page original, though the original (by Adam Smith) has had far more influence than this book will ever have.

The reference to wooden teeth and romantic scandals is more or less a comparison of Smith to our founding father, George W. Neither wore big happy grins, nor did their personal lives offer much grist for the rumor mills. O’Rourke addresses this matter only because it seems proper to assess the private lives of public philosophers, though for some reason he suggests public figures in government ought not be subjected to the same scrutiny.

Adam Smith kept no personal diary so that unlike our modern public figures whose every life detail is summarized in Wikipedia we know very little about the man except a notation by Sir Walter Raleigh, which may or may not be reliable.

There was another interesting sentence about fluctuations in the price of silver over the previous four centuries, but all in all, as I approach the end of the book I am pretty much ready for the next read.

March 4, 2012
The stack of books clamoring for my attention is a bit daunting right now, not including the numerous downloads patiently waiting in my Kindle. That list includes Neuromancer by cyberpunk author William Gibson, Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson, In the Company of Rilke, My Seinfeld Year, The Quotable Will Rogers, Being and Nothingness, Reverie, Raylan: A Novel, Dali Dreams of Gala and more. Who can tell what a day will bring forth.

On the Twin Ports arts scene front, there’s an art opening that could be worth attending. Ochre Ghost Gallery owner Jessica Liszewski's exhibition Irresistible Sorcery will be Jessica's first solo show at O.G.G. and it promises to be magical. There will be live music from Duluth songwriters Kyle Ollah and Lee Petersen with doors opening at 6:00 p.m. and carrying on till the usual ten o’clock closing.

If you’re on the mailing list, which you really ought to be if a fan of the local art scene’s bleeding edge, then you will have received member/curator Gustaf Ekstrand’s invitation, which included this description of Liszewski’s event….

An unpredictable spell has been cast by winter's witches.

The witch of weather has revealed that her polarity is bi-curious, sending the Arctic and North Atlantic Oscillations spinning wildly with lust. In an effort to seduce her, they have cast a spell on La Niña, the powerful temptress who just last year aroused record wetness in Australia, causing severe drought in the envious African horn.

The spell has sent La Niña's stimulating powers to the subconscious depths of her mind, only becoming active during her nap time dreams. Now aware of this, she has set herself up for hibernation, vowing to hypnotize the witch of weather into winter wind permanence by constantly dreaming of arctic lap dances. She has built a dream cave in an unused bear's den, and furnished it with an empress-sized bed clad with a comforter made from the plush pelt of a fur worm.

From the heights of Skunk Hill, a sorceress descends from her communal castle armed with gemstones and agates. She is sending her favorite hunters and warriors out to find the fabled den and wake La Niña from her hibernation, to break the hypnotic spell of her gyrations and ensure us all a proper beach life where Superior shores North and South meet.

If the quest fails, our beach life may be forever frozen in the slushy, icy essence we now find ourselves.

See you later, kids. Enjoy the show.


My Inner Chick said...

Can't wait to read more of your blog.

But wanted to ask if you were you just at Beaners?

We were there planning a meeting for the "Kay Marie Sisto Memorial Walk" to end domestic violence.

~~Kay was murdered in May. She was ( is )my sister.


Ed Newman said...

1. Yes, I was just at Beaners this a.m.... our internet has been down all week.
2. So very sorry to hear of your sister... This is a very serious issue that pains me greatly.
3. Thank you for "dropping in" here and leaving a note.

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