Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Skip the Poetry

After unpacking from my trip to North Carolina where I had taken back issues of The New Yorkers, I counted the ones remaining on my end table.


That's how many behind I am.


*wipes brow*

My New Yorkers make me nervous as they sit patiently on my end table waiting for me to pick one up and read its well-written articles, essays, stories, and reviews.

I have to be in the mood to read this magazine.

I can't explain it -- but sometimes, if I am not in the mood, I can't find one thing to read, and then when I'm in the mood, I read the whole darn thing.

Lookee -- an article on "Robots that Care."
Oh, and I can't wait to read the music review on Kanye West.

*rolls eyes*

When I retired, I thought I would read the New Yorkers as they came in the mail.... not save it for a marathon weekend reading or when I am away from television, the Internet, or novels.

But my favorite time to read them is when I travel.

They're compact, easy to hold, and they fit under my arm. I carry them places --- sit on them, put coffee mug rings on them, and they are no worse for wear. They conveniently fold over to the place where I leave off and are an excellent portable reader.

Edie: You need a Kindle.
Me: Not yet, my friend. I'm just now writing a blog. I'm embracing 2001.

I read about six New Yorkers going and coming on the six hours one way trip to North Carolina.

I left a Hansel and Gretel type of trail of those "use this card to get the New Yorker for 83% off the cover price* cards wherever I went.

They constantly fall on the floor, behind the car seat, or when I open the car door, to the ground.

I grumble when I have to lean over and pick one up.


They are a literate kind of litter, I guess, except that they reproduce like roaches.

Dang. They're everywhere in that magazine.

When we stop at rest stops or gas stations, I throw those cards in the trash. It feels good to do so. I don't know why -- it's like throwing away a to-do list where all the items have been crossed out -- it's like cleaning up after reading. It's cathartic.

David likes to drive --it's a control thing, and I am one of the few people I know who can read in a car.

David: Reading in the car gives me a headache.
Me: Reading in a chair gives you a headache.
David: Your point?

My friend Wingate gets my New Yorkers when I am finished --- I put Post-it notes on the articles, essays, book and cinema reviews, or fiction that I read and enjoyed. I don't read the poetry because it reads like this:

Water Angst

Ah, now my time has come, Melinda.
You visit me at night while I drink
a glass or twelve of white wine --
holy water
spirits of wet
---you who are from the sky--
for you have children, Paris, and lovers,
and big tumblers.
Still, I got angry with the paper and
the towels. Wet.
Circles the table and clacks her stilettos.
Asian bukkake.

(translated from the Berkerlian by Homer Jones)


So I skip the poetry.

If I had more room in the margins, I would underline text and make comments, but that slick paper makes for smears and illegibility. Plus, there is just not enough room. I can do some commenting.

My next issue is November 2 [somehow if fell out of place] and the the last one of December of 2009 -- then I will be to 2010.


No worries, though. The New Yorker is not a timely magazine, unless you read their political articles, which I don't. They're so far left -- I can't see them from the center.


The New Yorkers have interesting covers which I like to scrutinize .....

(a form of visual literacy, I guess, -- and sometimes, I don't get it --but I mostly do)

*pats self on back*

.. and their cartoons are more than clever.

*looks at end table*


That's a lot of magazine.
That's a lot of those subscription cards.


*picks up a novel*


  1. My New Yorkers are delivered automatically on Monday mornings, and the powers that be have yet to figure out how to slap those 83% off subscription cards on a Kindle!

  2. Down with Kindle! I work on a computer all day, I don't want to read for pleasure on one too. I like the feel of the paper in my hands. I like to be able to throw certain books across the room and not break them. And worst of all, they make it possible for unedited dreck to be published alongside legitmate work. Sad.

    And that poem is the reason I don't usually do poetry. I pretty much peaked out with "In a Station of the Metro." Maybe I liked a few French poems. But to me "water angst" is the fluid retention that comes with PMS.