READING JOHN MCPHEE - Complications Ensue
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Monday, August 21, 2006

If you ever run out of interesting New Yorker articles to read -- the kind where you think, "Hmmm, I didn't think I wanted to know about the half-mile-long trains that lug coal across the country, but this is an awfully interesting article," well, check out the many books of John McPhee. He's written a lot of those articles, and he's terribly good at getting you interested in whatever it is he's interested in. Such as how the Icelanders stopped a lava flow, or how the Mississippi River would really like to change its course drastically, or how one fellow still makes birch bark canoes...

I found McPhee because the blurb on the back of Charles Mann's 1491, a really brilliant read, compared Mann to Jared Diamond and John McPhee. I already worship at the brain of Jared Diamond, so off I went to the library for McPhee.

I'm off on vacation at my parents' place, hence the spotty blogging. It turns out I still sort of know how to play tennis. And I am getting lots and lots of advice on how to raise my daughter.

Lots.

And lots.

Meanwhile writing has kind of slowed to a crawl, which drives me a bit batty. I don't even know how Bon Cop Bad Cop did in its opening in the Rest of Canada. Though the massive spike in blog hits on Friday suggests it did not do too poorly...

4 Comments:

Bon Cop/Bad Cop is doing well, I hear, Alex, and I'm glad the hits on your website have shot up, despite how little people are actually talking about you, the guy who co-wrote the script.

I've been keeping tabs on all the press for this movie, reading/watching interviews, critics reviews etc., and y'know what really burns my bottom? Not a single one of them mentions you by name. The stars of the movie, the director, the producers, they're getting all the spotlight, and in those interviews, even they don't have the courtesy to mention you. In fact, everyone's inferring that Patrick Huard was entirely responsible for the story and the script.

Last week I read a critic's review and, after praising the stars, the director and the producers I felt sure he was going to mention you next. But no, he decided to thank and praise the 300+ extras who worked on the film. Instead of you. The guy who wrote the fucking script for the movie he thought so fucking highly of!

Can you tell I'm upset?

KJC (you know, I am a publicist)

By Blogger Kelly J. Compeau, at 2:25 PM  

Hey, whoa, I was just one of four people who worked on the script!

But yeah, it would be nice if critics credited the writers. The Globe and Mail remarked on some of the funny and outrageous things the director did, e.g. Martin Ward remarking that putting people in the trunk of a car was a "Quebec tradition." They were in the script first, tho'.

By Blogger Alex Epstein, at 2:43 PM  

Have a great rest of vacation! I will definitely check out some of McPhee's work. Thanks for the heads up.
I have become ridiculously addicted to tennis in the last couple of years. I'm such a beginner, but things are starting to come together. The most important thing, is to leave the court wanting more. Never play so it becomes no fun, or you'll never get back out there.
Scribe

By Blogger Scribe LA, at 6:30 PM  

Funny you should mention McPhee. I visited the family cabin over the weekend, discovered a McPhee book (assembling california), read it, and wrote about it on my weblog

(I saw mention of your McPhee discovery by Bill Humphries, aka Whump, who linked to both of us and declared that yesterday was McPhee day. So I stopped by to say HI.)

I'll definitely be reading more of his stuff.

By Blogger Susan, at 12:28 AM  

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