William Gibson hasn’t been blogging lately, so when he does, I always check out what he has to say. Nevermind that he’s still stuck on his “Buzz Rickson’s PR MA-1” flight jacket (read Pattern Recognition to understand why), anything Ol’ Bill says is always interesting. Now, normally when I read professional writers’ blogs and they post a list of things they are or they recommend reading, I’m usually way behind the curve. Most of the authors I have either never heard of or haven’t read. Not this time. As obscure as the title sounds, I have read Jorge Luis Borges Selected Non-Fictions. The book sits proudly on my shelf with the bookish image of a young Borges on its spine. Admittedly, the book was borrowed some years ago and I never returned it to its proper owner. His name was Jorge too. Sorry Jorge! If you give me your current address I can mail it to you! (he weasels sheepishly)
Last year I was working at the Instituto Cervantes, a Spanish cultural center in New York City rather close to the UN. They had Borges week (or was it month?) where they showed Borges documentaries, had panel discussions about his writing, and even had his wife come and read to us. The Spanish take their literary heroes a bit more seriously than we do, at least in the popular culture, and you could see everyone’s eyes light up at the presence of this famous writer’s wife. (The Spanish tend to charmingly usurp all Spanish language literature as if it were all clearly a part of the diaspora of ancient Spain) I suppose it’s also seldom, too, that a writer breaks out of his home country and language the way Borges has. He truly is world renown.
On Saturday night I had my second annual New Year’s Eve party. Many people came, some unexpected, which was nice, and even though we all drank our liver-full, there are tons of leftovers of beer and hors’doeuvres in my fridge. I even forgot to put out the pita and hummus. So we have to do it over. What do you say, 7pm, this saturday, my place? Hmm, better not. This place hasn’t been this clean since I moved in.