1) Perils of translation: Emailed out-of-office autoreply text from translator used on road sign.
2) Seductive monsters, Batman-style. Has to be seen to be believed. The “best” part is that this is part of a villain’s origin story.
3) “The slush pile seems, in some sense, to serve as a sort of representative sampling of the collective unconscious of the American public—a surreal landscape of vengeance, conspiracy, otherworldly beings, and really big guns. Sexual relations between ladies and gentlemen are fraught with peril (especially given that one or more participants in any romantic endeavor may very likely be aliens, demons, were-vampires, undead, or in a coma); queerness is almost nonexistent, as is any sort of radical politics (unless by “radical” one means “hoping to overthrow the government and install in its place a parliament selected by extraterrestrials from a more spiritually advanced dimension”); and people of color exist only as grotesque caricatures.”
4) The NY Times 100 Notable Books of the Year. No, I’m not going to read it, either. I loaded the page, “control f” searched for my name, and of course found nothing. Now I’m done with the list.
5) Cormac McCarthy donates his typewriter to charitable auction. The most amusing part is that the dealer handling the auction thinks it’s astonishing that McCarthy wrote all that fiction on such a primitive machine. Someone should explain to him that it’s the machine in McCarthy’s head that did the real work.
6) Celestial Soul Portraits. The perfect gift for your most hated enemy. via tnh’s Particles.
7) Maureen Dowd in a telling misstatement: “Barack Obama is the ultimate party crasher. He crashed Hillary’s high-hat party in 2008 and he crashed the snooty age-old Washington party of privileged white guys with a monopoly on power.” A quick note for Ms. Dowd: Barack Obama didn’t crash a thing. He was invited by the only people empowered to give out invitations.