Back to the Future by Tony Tulathimutte [The New Republic] For 45 years, Don DeLillo has been our high priest of the American apocalypse, having tackled just about every man-made disaster: nukes in End Zone, nukes and garbage in Underworld, toxic pollution in White Noise, financial busts in Cosmopolis, terrorism in Falling Man, terrorism and the death of the novel in Mao II, war in Point Omega. His latest novel, Zero K, clears out every end-times scenario left in the bag: climate change, droughts, pandemics, volcanoes, biological warfare, even meteor strikes and solar flares. But these only menace in the background as future probabilities, and the novel’s focus is not human extinction but its inverse: immortality through cryonics. [more inside]
The wayward greatness of the towers — resolutely local and eccentrically universal — and the scale of Rodia’s achievement were attested to by admirers such as Buckminster Fuller and Jacob Bronowski. Whether or not Rodia created a work of art is another question. Or at least the question “Is it a work of art?” brings with it another: what kind of work of art might it be? Geoff Dyer visits the Watts Towers for Harper's [more inside]
The following conversation took place in 2005 in front of an audience at the Telluride film festival in Colorado, after a screening of Martin Scorsese’s documentary, Bob Dylan: No Direction Home.
Holt, Reinhart, and Winston published Amazons: An Intimate Memoir by the First Woman Ever to Play in the National Hockey League in the fall of 1980 ... In over-the-top comically implausible prose, [Cleo] Birdwell, a twenty-three-year-old from Badger, Ohio, narrates her inaugural season with the New York Rangers. She has a Midwestern practicality and straight-forwardness, a sly humor, and an unusually subversive sexual candor and agency, chronicling—sans any standard female shame or hesitancy—her plentiful sexual liaisons with a gamut of neurotic men. The dialogue is masterful and playful and the humor unremitting. Yet beneath Birdwell’s narration, a foreboding lurks—a tinge of sadness and an existential-like searching-ness. That’s because Cleo Birdwell is a pseudonym for Don Delillo.
David Foster Wallace Writes to Don DeLillo: Among the many curiosities of this correspondence: “No offense intended” by the card’s image (a book cover from Sheldon Lord’s A Woman Must Love), the mention of Jonathan Franzen’s New Yorker piece on William Gaddis, the brick shithouse of a palm tree, and a request to eyeball DeLillo’s “new novel” (Cosmopolis?). So many of the sentences create space for wondering what more there is to know. [Via: The Outlet] [more inside]
The Web Is Not A TV Channel is the latest in a series of admonitions for musical and marketing industry types from music blogger, record company founder and bass player Dave Allen. [more inside]
What DeLillo can tell us about Gilchrist Nicely-composed meditation on the parallels between the career of NZ political police tout Rob Gilchrist and the characters described in Don DeLillo's 1988 novel Libra.
"I was driving a Lexus through a rustling wind." Did anyone recognize the opening sentence of Don DeLillo's Underworld? First lines often set the tone for a whole novel but they're fun on their own too. So, after reading this article by John Mullan, I found this interesting quiz to test my identification skills. Well! The warm-up exercises are recommended for giving you a false sense of security, btw... And here's a bonus quiz for Faulkner fans. Just one example: "The jury said "Guilty" and the Judge said "Life" but he didn't hear them." They don't get much better than that, do they?