Yesterday marked the official publication of The Original of Laura, Nabokov’s last work in progress. Dmitri Nabokov, the author’s son and executor, agonized over the decision not to burn and send these roughly written 138 index cards worth of notes into the wild. For diehard Nabokovians, it’s a treat, but I don’t think it will do the master stylist’s reputation any good. Reportedly, Lolita, too, was supposed to be consigned to the fireplace, but his wife Vera rescued it and now we all have one of the 20th Century’s masterpieces of literature. But that was a finished novel and this is just the opening notes. For more about TOOL, check here and here. The Times of London got the excerpt exclusive. Will I buy it? You betcha.
The above photo was taken in 1991 in the Bronx by New York Times staff reporter Angel Franco. Composed with the urban blight in the background, this Halloween picture of Guisette Muniz, then 6, elicited an outpouring of Times' readers emotions (and gifts). Readers interpreted Muniz's expression to be sad, vulnerable, and worthy of pity, when in reality she was scared--not of the desolate neighborhood--but of her uncle who was inside the apartment in a frightening Chuckie costume. Read more about this photo in the Times here. This also fits nicely with Errol Morris' series in the Op-Ed webpages on propaganda and photography, a fascinating read here. The subject of how photographers compose, put frames around what they see, is worthy of many books of essays. Context is everything.
I missed a fair amount of fall folliage while down in Florida, but not the ginkos which are still in their glory.
One of my last evenings at ACA, I made a little movie of my bike ride to Turnbull Bay. The music is a beautiful sentimental excerpt from Gorecki's London Symphony.
Leaving ACA in my rental, I stopped at my favorite sunset spot to catch the sunrise over Turnbull Bay. Click the photo for a bigger version.
Coca Cola's new slogan greeted me with my complimentary Minute Maid OJ on my flight back to NYC.
The Last Resort is the bar made infamous by Aileen Wuornos, the first woman serial killer to be executed. She frequented this bar and her mugshot is on the wall behind the bar. It's also quite a biker hangout and the perfect setting for some of the ACA gang to get a last brew before the end of the residency. The film Monster was filmed there as well.