Sunday, June 22, 2008

Out of blog into fire

Out of the House
Despite the temperature veering into the nineties, the Wee Bride and I ventured into the wilds of Oakland yesterday to go yard-sailing.

First we had a great breakfast at Lois the Pie Queen. Mm. Flaky biscuits.

The yard sales themselves were a disappointment. One was a sidewalk sale at a shop that had lost its lease. Unless you like all the potpourri you can carry, not much there. However, it was right next door to Lulu’s, the Wee Bride’s hair stylist. She made an appointment with Seth, aka Hunx from Gravy Train. Good band!

Then we stopped by Book Zoo, the proprietor of which was delighted to see us again. We’d gone there last year (not having a car we don’t hit the book shops as much as we’d like), and he still remembered us. Apparently, people aren’t lining up to sample his fine merchandise. But we did! The Wee Bride bought a bunch of British and Canadian Harlequin romances from the sixties. I got two John Dickson Carr mysteries (he is king of the locked room puzzle), and two by James McClure, who wrote a great mystery series, set in South Africa in the apartheid years. His detectives are Afrikaner Lieutenant Tromp Kramer and Bantu Sergeant Mickey Zondi.

I also got a booklet called KNOW THE NAVAJO, by Sandy Hassell, first printed in 1949. It appears to be a gift shop item, purchased by curious tourists to acquaint themselves with the quaint ways of the Navajo.

What I learned:

“A large majority of Navajos will ride in an airplane if invited.”

“Navajos have no curse words.”

“Navajos are hospitable, friendly, and fun-loving.”

“Navajos are cleaner than other primitive tribes.”

“Navajos love their children and seldom whip them.”

“A Navajo does not wear his hat tilted forward, backward, or sideways.”

“Navajos prefer brown shoes to black.”

“Navajos seldom die from snake bites.”

“Navajo men never whistle after sundown.”

We also stopped by a huge two-house yard sale, which offered hundreds of African-American romance novels, and dozens of women’s shoes. We got JARED’S COUNTERFEIT FIANCEE, VOODOO LOVE, and MEN CRY IN THE DARK. No shoes.

And so: home. To sweat and read.

BAD DAY AT BLACK ROCK was on public television at eight. One of my favorites. Especially when one-armed Spencer Tracy beats the crap out of Ernest Borgnine. Well, Spencer’s obvious double beats the crap out of Ernest Borgnine.

In other news…
Deranged supermodel Naomi Campbell has apologized for assaulting two police offers at Heathrow Airport. But she has not apologized to British Airways.

Julia Allison
Who the hell is she? I don’t know. She’s famous! She was fired from editor-at-large position at Star, I know that. There was a profile of her at In it the writer recounts Ms. Allison’s meeting with Michael Hirschorn, head of VH1.

"’I just want to tell you how much I love The Girls Next Door,’ says Allison.
"’Yes, but,’ says Hirschorn.
"’It is really my favorite show,’ says Allison, her head bobbing up and down. ‘I'm hooked.’
"’Uh,’ says Hirschorn.
"’No, seriously,’ I love it," insists Allison.
"’But it's not on this network,’ says Hirschorn.
“Allison skips her way back to the elevator. ‘I think that went really well!’"

From an article in New York Magazine, by Rex Sorgatz: "Where traditional fame was steeped in class envy on the part of the audience and alienation on the part of the celebrity, microfame closes the gap between devotee and celebrity. It feels like a step toward equality. You can become Facebook friends with the microfamous; you can start IM sessions with them. You can love them and hate them at much closer proximity. And you can just as easily begin to cultivate your own set of admirers. Though an element of luck often plays a role in achieving traditional fame, microfame is practically a science. It is attainable like running a marathon or acing the LSAT. All you need is a road map."


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