Here are 10 things I thought were worth sharing this week:
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- The myth of the artistic recluse.
- I had never read Eve Babitz, and I really enjoyed Slow Days, Fast Company, her smart, gossipy classic about LA.
- Why you need a room of your own AND money.
- I dig Robert Louis Stevenson, and really liked the essays in this Penguin Great Ideas mini-collection, An Apology for Idlers. (It would pair well with Lin Yutang’s The Importance of Living.)
- Making art is not just about finding the appropriate tools, it can also be about finding “some fool use” for inappropriate tools.
- Malcolm Harris’s Kids These Days is the first book I’ve read about my generation that actually makes sense to me. (I was born in '83.) The introduction alone is worth reading. It is appropriately bleak. (Some related reading: John Gatto’s Dumbing Us Down, Peter Gray’s Free To Learn, Bill Deresiewicz’s Excellent Sheep, and Neil Postman’s Amusing Ourselves To Death.)
- Eye candy: I hardly ever get to go to the movies, so I enjoy catching up with year-end lists: David Erlich’s video countdown is gorgeous, I want to see pretty much every movie on Manohla Dargis’s list, and Stephanie Zacharek is my favorite movie critic who’s also really smart about the art of list-making.
- Ear candy: I love Bill Withers, and I love this performance from 1972, especially, the spectacularly funky drumming of James Gadson. He actually plays on a new cut by the band Vulfpeck.
- Jazz legend Sonny Rollins on his legacy and having to give up the sax. Better name that bridge after him! (What’s that you say? You haven’t heard Saxophone Colossus? Come on!)
- RIP Ivan Chermayeff, William Gass, and Every Frame A Painting.
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PS. If you haven’t already, check out my 2017 holiday gift guide!