Here are 10 things I thought were worth sharing this week:
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- By the time I found out about Anthony Bourdain’s death, last week’s newsletter had already been sent. This one hit particularly hard (why are the good ones leaving and the terrible ones staying?) because I was just getting into his work: I’d read last year’s profile in the New Yorker, and Parts Unknown became my go-to show on Netflix for when I was in-between things to watch. I spent a lot of time with him this week: I read the 1999 New Yorker piece that made him famous, started Kitchen Confidential, which is great, listened to him on Fresh Air and WTF, and read a bunch of his interviews like this one, where he makes fun of fancy beer drinkers. He had a whole worldview that I could get down with, and he will be missed.
- Two books that helped me understand depression.
- I’m reading Horace’s Epistles, and like so much ancient writing, they feel like one gigantic subtweet of our current moment. (“People are punished for whatever maddens their kings.”)
- Eleanor Davis wrote and drew two of my favorite books I’ve read this year — You & a Bike & a Road and Why Art? — and for $5 you can read the first chapter of her new one and support her work.
- I’m impressed by the quality of the children’s books published by Enchanted Lion. For a sampling, check out Blexbolex’s Ballad and Vacation, Ohara Hale’s Be Still, Life, and Kirsten Hall and Matt Forsythe’s The Gold Leaf.
- Ear candy: Gladys Knight and the Pips’ “On and On” and Schumann’s “Traumerei.”
- “The magic of a cardboard box,” an excerpt from Alexandra Lange’s new book, The Design of Childhood: How the Material World Shapes Independent Kids. (Can’t wait to read this.)
- 18 new music books to read this summer. (I really want to read Questlove’s Creative Quest, Ryan Walsh’s Astral Weeks, and Joe Gross’s 33 1/3 Fugazi book.)
- Corita Kent, the pop art nun. She features heavily in the new book I’m working on — she begins chapter five and chapter ten. If you like my books, you might like her book, Learning By Heart.
- Chattanooga! I am headed your way next week to chat with the mayor. Come on out! Details here.
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PS. Summer is a great time to start a journaling habit.