A blog that was supposed be made up of bits about cab rides and blurbs about beauty products but, instead, is about other things.


'I Am Your Waiter Tonight and My Name Is Dmitri'

Was it asking for a low-level amount of trouble by putting Chistopher Hitchens just after Robert Hass at the National Book Awards Finalist Reading? Since this seems to be shaping up as "superficial worry about the war week" here, I mention this incident too. Hass's poem — "I Am Your Waiter Tonight and My Name Is Dmitri" — was amusing, and Hitchens wasn't entirely wrong in his tiny tirade. Some of the crowd hissed, which seemed stupid, but then so is making sweeping statements about what you wish and don't wish a room full of writers might join you in believing. Both men tried to rally some sentiment in an audience not otherwise interested in seeing the podium as a platform of any sort.

Another NBA note: after today's proceedings, I now really want to read Brian Selznick's The Invention of Hugo Cabret. This morning, the finalists in Young People's Literature had an entire auditorium of students entranced. There was actual hooting and hollering, which was certainly more inspired than the ninny hissing that happened when the adults were gathered later in the night. (Photos, of all of this, the above fake fracas too, soon.)
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