Thursday, June 12, 2014



(Farrar, Straus and Giroux)




"We humans have always defined ourselves by narration.  What's happening today is that we're allowing multi-national corporations to tell our stories for us.  The theme of corporate stories (and millions drink them in every day) seldom varies: to be happy you must consume, to be special you must conform.  Absurd, obviously, yet our identities have become so fragile, so elusive, that we seem content to let advertisers provide us with their version of who we are, to let them recreate us in their image: a cookie-cutter image based on market research, shallow sociology, and insidious lies.  Individualism is bad for business  --  though absolutely necessary for freedom, progressive knowledge, and any possible interface with the transcendent.  And yes, it's entirely possible to function as a free-thinking individual without succumbing to narcissism."

Tom Robbins

Robbins is a direct descendant of Daniel Defoe (1660-1731)
Think about that a moment.

 recommend all


Luster said...


A fine shelf of books (all of them new to me but of course not their subjects) for that retro man cave, and that picture of Ruby Dee the ultimate pin-up -- beautiful, engaged, talented, smart as a whip. The shelf makes me remember when we had an understood canon of underground classics -- Kesey, Brautigan, Robbins, Vonnegut, Hesse, Tolkein, Bradbury, Kerouac et al. You HAD to read them. How could one listen to the Airplane and not have read Stranger in a Strange Land? I wonder if the same notion holds today. Has that canon remained and been supplemented? Or does reading have the same cache?

from the old school,

PS After all the rain, found a basket full of chanterelles along the path. De-lish

Bob Arnold / Longhouse said...


You know the great book: rain makes applesauce? Of course you do. Rain also makes chanterelles.

Every generation had their books and their classics and if the generation amounted to something, the books would last, and many have.

These fellows in the man cave are mainly west coast variety, hipsters, far and away from New York and the usual marketing ploy. Even John Waters is hardcore Baltimore, which makes a point at not being New York City, and anyway, he walked out of his front door and just started to hitchhike. In these times! Kerouac started out one of his major sojourns this way and then found out, the hard way, he was thumbing rides in the wrong direction! We've all been there. It's classic. Sometimes the adventure gets written up and becomes a classic.

Yesterday on the coast; today up in the drizzly mist coated White Mountains and in between we hiked around Walden Pond. An easy stride one hour hike, with swimmers doing laps the length of the pond. It's jade coloring, it can be shallow along the edges and very deep at the center. Thoreau figured about 104 feet. Or so.

Nothing but rain most of the week. We'd now like it to stop
all's well, Bob

Bob Arnold / Longhouse said...


Just heard Jimmy Scott passed away at 88. The stunning singer, interpreter, vocal genius. We're just too busy right now on the road with errands and long travel bouts to get anything correct in place on the Birdhouse for Jimmy Scott the master. I'll make up for this, and him.

all's well, B.

Luster said...

Listening to Jimmy singing "Time After Time" right now …