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Sunday, December 9, 2007

Little Casino & Hollywood

Having enjoyed Sorrentino's Little Casino, I pulled the monumental Mulligan Stew off the shelf and was surprised to see that the pages were turning brown along the edges (hideous evidence that time truly is passing, running out; it was just yesterday I was reading the thing) and to discover, according to notes on extra pages I had glued into the back and marks in the margins that I had read the entire thing (I would have bet serious money I hadn't finished it), so, after dipping into it here and there, I took his Blue Pastoral off the shelf, which I knew I had abandoned, read a few pages and abandoned it again, permanently, because it truly is awful--pretentious, pompous, pointlessly 'silly' to the point that it literally hurts to read it (it's amazing how far wrong a gifted writer can go), but to end on a positive note, here are a few sentences from the Stars of the Silver Screen chapter of Casino:

"Why are they forever comfortable and really swell and relaxed in their old t-shirts and ripped, faded jeans? . . . Why do they think that Raymond Chandler is a cocaine connection? . . . Why don't they like the notion of themselves as 'overnight successes'? Does it have anything to do with the 'blow-job theory'? . . . Why do they hate to be recognized? . . . Why do they think that they 'work hard' for their money? . . . Why are they always in and out of one clinic or another? . . . Why don't they stop sucking on that bottled water? . . Is it true that they will hump anything that will stand still? . . . Why are they such glorious marks for fake paintings, fake antiques, and fake first editions? . . . Belatedly, Bromo Eddie queries: 'Why don't they go fuck themselves?' What a serious and well-informed citizen and consumer Eddie is!' "

IMPORTANT UPDATE: For dinner tonight, shrimp sauteed in butter, garlic and lemon, boiled white rice, asparagus, St. Pauli NA in a heavy bar glass of the type preferred by Inspector Morse (the late John Thaw) of the BBC television series on PBS, and a terrible (half) Napoleon--one has had homemade Napoleons, with rich filling and apricot jelly and wonderfully flaky puff pastry, so this slop on cardboard pastry was particularly disappointing.

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