What’s Become of Waring – Anthony Powell

Anthony Powell waits for the rice to be done.
Image from the Anthony Powell site.

I finished up Anthony Powell‘s What’s Become of Waring, given to me by a certain Mr. C_____, who is a dear fan of his later A Dance to the Music of Time. The novel is set in something like pre-war Britain and follows, in a very laid-back –embarrassments and loves of the upper class–British Comedy way, the efforts of a book editor to track down the title character, a famous writer of travel books who may or may not be dead or real or a plagiarist. Before I read it, I thought the plot sounded a bit post-modern, or even a bit Pynchon-esque, but after reading I realise 1936 is really too early for that sort of narrative. It’s more a shaggy dog story that a deep examination of identity
Very gentle humor, lots of comedy of manners from an age long gone by, characters with names like Winefred, you get the picture.
Some interesting facts about Mr. Powell (that’s pronounced “Pole”): His nephew-in-law is Harold Pinter, one of my favorite playrights. Also, he really liked his own homemade curry, although I disagree on using butter with cooked rice. On the other hand I’ll give him a break because for one thing he’s dead, and the other is I bet he didn’t own an electric rice cooker.
So what should I read next?

Cowboy Bebop

I’m currently catching up with the anime series known as Cowboy Bebop.
I’ve known about Cowboy Bebop since buying the soundtracks back in 1999, but this is the first time I’ve watched the show. It really starts going by the third episode, and now I’m hooked. I dole one episode a night to myself.
The other reason to like Cowboy Bebop, apart from the music, the humor, the brilliant post-Blade Runner pop design, is leading lady Faye Valentine. Everybody loves Faye.

Borrowed from All That Jazz.

Just as I was finding

Just as I was finding it hard to believe that so many people are swallowing Colin Powell’s “evidence” against Iraq, I came across this piece of lunacy:
Catholics Flock to Fence-Post Virgin Mary

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Catholics in the Australian city of Sydney are flocking to pray at a fence post at Coogee beach which they believe projects an image of the Virgin Mary.

Yes, it looks like the Virgin Mary–if you have glaucoma.

Goodbye Cruel World Wide Web

Goodbye Cruel World Wide Web
A 21-year-old by the name of Brandon Vedas was bragging on his IRC chat about how “hardcore” he was, while he injested a druggie cocktail of Klonopin, Methadone, Restoril and Inderal, along with side orders of marijuana and 151-proof rum. His baffled chatroom buddies egged him on until he stopped typing and slumped over in his chair. A small debate then raged about calling 911 (seeings many knew him personally), but most worried about getting the guy busted for having some pot on him. That’s what friends are for! Now, he’s dead. How hardcore is that?
You can read the chat transcript, which reads like Dada poetry, here.
Watch as local Arizona politicians seek to outlaw IRC, the Internet, Web cams, keyboards, etc. “what about the children?” etc. etc.