Friday, October 12, 2007

Weekend Links
(It's really just another way of saying 'Book News, In Brief,' isn't it?)

Hot trend alert: Lately, more and more mom and pop bookstores are housing homeless cats in a misguided attempt at marketing their 'indie street cred.' I want to warn these stores, and any other shops currently considering treading down a similarly paw printed path, that you just might be doing the very thing that that the corporate 'fat cats' at Borders and Barnes & Noble want you to do. One of the feline community's many magical powers (used just as often and proficiently as their ability to make single women feel whole and their natural knack for trapping breath-stealing trolls) is smelling like cat urine. And believe it or not, folks: no one likes their books to smell of cat urine. Statistically, it's pungent, pee stained books -- not shopping-at-home convenience -- that drives most people to
(Special thanks to Galleycat for the urgent 911!)

Just in time to have fallen off of the radars of all of you, Banned Books Week people, a British teen has been arrested for owning The Anarchist Cookbook. Apparently, the powers that be still frown on this sort of thing six years, three nationally televised telethons, two major motion pictures, and countless country tribute songs after 9-11. What 'The Man' seems unwilling or unable to realize is that everyone heals in different ways. One man's Anarchist Cookbook is another's Chicken Soup For The Soul. Oh, no. Wait a minute. The article goes on further, doesn't it? Police who searched the 17 year old's bedroom reportedly found 500g of potassium nitrate and 250g of calcium chloride. That certainly raises some questions, no? Not the least of which is: How much does this kid get for allowance?
(Shout-outs to Readers Read for the bold -- and some might say anti-establishmental -- reporting. You're the real heroes.)

Bookslut's 'weekly interview feature from Elizabeth Merrick' this week features an interview with Neal Pollack. Among Pollack's other accomplishments, he is shepherd to a flock of hipster parents over at Offsprung, author of Alternadad, and a former cog in the wheel of (Oh, crap. I already used the word hipster in this sentence!) trendmaster and tastemaker boutique publisher, McSweeney's. Not that you asked, but I personally find Pollack to be one of the funniest writers writing today. He doesn't come off like a pretentious ass or a pretentious ass trying his damnedest not to come off like a pretentious ass, and these days, that's some of the highest praise someone of my stature can give.