Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Writers' cubicles & the Procrastination Zone. Literary museums & an almost forgotten memory.

Writers' Cubicles:

I love their black architect's lamps. Don't know what I'd do without mine—although mine have green shades. Writers, their cubicles & the Procrastination Zone.

Literary museums in a literary city bring back an almost-forgotten memory: 

I was home for the summer from college—we had just read and parsed The Magic Mountain that year. Visiting friends of my family, I saw my father's tennis partner sitting on the veranda immersed in a book.

"What are you reading?" I asked.

"Buddenbrooks," he said. We then had a lengthy discussion of Thomas Mann, the details of which I have forgotten. What I haven't forgotten is that he was reading the family saga (based on Mann's own family) in German and graciously took the time to actually listen to my (no doubt) jejune theories of T. Mann, the symbolic meaning of the mountain sanitarium, and the allure of Mme. Chauchat.

The man was a well-known radio newscaster of his era. Do today's broadcast equivalents do the same kind of leisure reading? Is Brian Williams reading Thomas Mann? In German? In English? On Wikipedia? Thomas Mann, Günter Grass & literary museums.

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