Sunday, January 24, 2010


I went to Evil Megachain Coffee Place today, poked at Twitter on my cellphone for a while, then scribbled. Drafted something that feels kinda like song lyrics: it's rhymey and not subtle or complex enough to be a poem, with a song-ish structure. I used to do that all the time, but not so much lately. It's fun.

(Sorry about the evil megachain coffee. It's close to home, usually has a free spot by the windows, and plays decent music. I can usually write there, and that's what counts.)

* * * * *

Apparently there were some football games today. I think I live in the one part of the country that won't generally be cheering for New Orleans. Good thing I don't care enough to take sides.

* * * * *

Ahsahta Press is taking its back catalog digital, via the Boise State University Library's institutional repository, ScholarWorks (the same name IU uses for ours). I suppose there is bound to be a certain amount of controversy over this, but I think it's pretty cool. It's not like they are giving up on print, they're just using the repository to keep books available that otherwise you'd have to order via interlibrary loan, and I like that they've got the library involved - to me that suggests it will be done right. I still love print, carry a book with me at all times despite the fact that any unexpected dull moments can just as easily be filled by poking at Twitter or Facebook or various random websites on my cellphone (and if I'm standing in line at the post office, I'll be honest, it's easier to pull out the phone and hold it in a free hand rather than trying to juggle turning pages in a book while standing there) - but I love the idea of small-press poetry being available in virtual perpetuity. What do y'all think?

* * * * *

The "Hope for Haiti Now" telethon Friday night was very nicely done, with several musicians I'm not usually that crazy about turning in heartfelt performances that won me over. (Justin Timberlake and Mary J. Blige, I'm talkin' to you.) Of course I loved Bruce Springsteen's delicate rendition of "We Shall Overcome," assisted by Seeger Sessions band members Charlie Giordano on accordion, Curt Ramm on trumpet, and Patti Scialfa, Soozie Tyrell, Cindy Mizelle, and Curtis King on vocals. And the new song written especially for the occasion and performed by Jay-Z, Rihanna, Bono, and the Edge - "Stranded (Haiti Mon Amour)" - is actually a pretty good song, unlike a lot of other well-intentioned charity singles ("We Are The World," I'm talkin' to you).

Keep on giving to Haiti if you can. You can donate directly, or you can purchase the audio and/or video of the telethon, or just grab individual songs for a buck apiece, if you're so inclined (link goes to a page that leads to your choice of iTunes or amazon). Here's Bruce to inspire you:


Jessie Carty said...

no shame in using the evilmegachains sometimes. i often grab free wi-fi at several of the deli/bagel type places in the area. all chains! sorry guys!

i like that Ahsahta is going with a library to assist with their back list. Better than things going permanently out of print, even if that print is virtual :)

Lyle Daggett said...

The essence of the whole print vs. electronic argument, for me, is that the world's economy being what it is, the more writing becomes digitalized and no longer in print (as such), the less available and accessible it will be for people who can't afford, or don't have ready access to, computers or other electronic media.

(This was a major issue for me during much of the 1990's when I knew many people who were becoming active in the then-fledgling online world, and I couldn't afford a computer, didn't remotely have the money during that period in my life.)


Yesterday (Sunday) I was in the only other part of the country that wasn't generally cheering for New Orleans, but Minnesota lost anyway. Phbt. ;p