Wednesday 7 January 2009

Butt was uninjured . . .

I had one of those it-never-rains-but-it-pours days today – one mishap and disruption after another. But certainly nothing nearly as bad as what happened to a poor US skier. Thanks, Mike, for alerting me to this story and wrangle a smile from me. You can see the picture on the BBC website, here:

Now, going back to what I said yesterday about typos and punctuation, I think the editor here missed a trick. The final paragraph could have read, much more perspicuously:

"The resort operator said the 48-year-old man was suspended for about seven minutes – butt was uninjured."

* * *

I had lunch with John Calder today – which is a dangerous affair if you are planning to go back to your office and do some work in the afternoon. He gave me some wonderful tips which I'll look into tonight, plus the typescript of his 600-page magnum opus, The Garden of Eros, which I am hoping to publish towards the end of the year. It's a partly biographical, partly autobiographical account of his life in publishing, with a focus on the publishing and cultural scene in the Fifties and Sixties, and such iconic figures as Girodias (Olympia Press) and Barney Rosset (Grove), whom I met in December in New York. I read the first draft last year, and the revised draft promises to be even better and chock-full of anecdotes.

John is in great demand these days, and extremely busy with a number of literary and theatre projects. As well as penning articles, giving lectures, touring with his company of actors and giving talks at literary festivals, he keeps writing obituaries (he's written thousands apparently) and adding to his opera diary, which he has been keeping for at least the last sixty years. He has promised to contribute again soon to this blog, so be on the lookout. . .


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