Friday, July 22, 2005

“Thank you for that… uh… powerful expression of basic human needs.”

The Movie: Blaze, 1989 (Ron Shelton, director and screenwriter, from the book by Blaze Starr and Huey Perry)
Who says it: Paul Newman as Louisiana Governor Earl Long
The context: Governor Long has just seen the stripper Blaze Starr (Lolita Davidovitch) dance for the first time.
How to use it: This quotation works on a wide range of socially inappropriate behaviors.

I may not have this quotation exactly right -- it's not on IMDb, but this is the way I've been saying the line for years.

A1-to-Go had its monthly wine tasting last night. I bought three bottles: a Prosecco, a Spanish table red, and, for curiosity's sake, a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc that comes with a screw top. The Prosecco has a beer-bottle cap, but no one expects to recap a bottle of Prosecco once it's open.

The magazines say that plastic corks and screw tops are the wave of the wine-bottling future, but it still seems comical. And what will I do with the fancy corkscrew I got for Christmas last year?

Too busy to read much for pleasure this week, especially since one of the books I did read was 652 pages long.

What I Read This Week

J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. You think I'm above Pottermania? If you're looking for backlash, you won't find it here. She's not the world's greatest prose stylist; when even Stephen King says you overuse adverbs, you should listen. But the world she's imagined is so compelling, and her plots are so ingenious, that she deserves every bit of her success. I was sure I knew who was going to die at the end of this book, and it seemed obvious who the Half-Blood Prince was -- but the circumstances of that death, and the real identity of the Half-Blood Prince, shocked me. Most impressive, nothing about these revelations felt contrived or "Scooby Doo"-like; everything in the first five books built toward the final fifty pages of this one. Bravo.

Terrill Lee Lankford, Blonde Lightning. As soon as I finished the advance reading copy of this book, I came across a blog posting of Lee's in which he asked people not to read the advance copy, because he made substantive changes before the book went to press. So now I'll have to read the book itself, just to see the changes -- but the advance copy was quite good, even before his changes. This is a sequel to last year's Earthquake Weather, a classic Hollywood noir whodunit. Blonde Lightning is a thriller, rather than a whodunit, as would-be film producer Mark Hayes gets involved in his neighbor Clyde McCoy's obsessive determination to make a film from his own screenplay. The character of Clyde McCoy owes a great deal to Newton Thornburg's Alex Cutter, a debt Lankford acknowledges by sending his characters to see a revival of Cutter's Way at the Nuart. You can read Blonde Lightning without having read Earthquake Weather, but the first ten pages of Blonde Lightning give away the ending of Earthquake Weather, so it's probably best to read them in order.


JJ said...

I constantly reread King's "On Writing" because a) he's on the money with his advice and b) he doesn't follow it at all himself. Now that's infotainment.

JJ said...

Oh, and have you used a corkscrew on these new synthetic corks? It feels like you're drilling into a prosthetic hand. Yech.

AnswerGirl said...

I agree with you on both topics; I recommend ON WRITING to many of my clients, and use one of those claw things on the plastic corks, for that very reason...