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Current Reading

Today was Ana Marie Cox day in New York City. The newly-retired editor of Wonkette and author of the just-published Dog Days, Ms Cox had an Op-Ed piece in the Times and was the subject of an article by David Carr in the paper's Arts section. She also appeared on the Brian Lehrer Show, where Andrea Bernstein was filling in. Ms Cox is undoubtedly giving a reading somewhere in the city tonight or tomorrow.

I'm not a follower of Wonkette, or any of its siblings, for that matter, but it will be interesting to see what the future holds for Ms Cox. She says that she will probably continue to keep some sort of Web log. Asked what advice she has for new bloggers, she nailed the basics: post at least one entry every day, and do a lot of linking. She didn't say anything about comments, which led to a "duh" moment on my part. Why write comments (that is, work) when you can just type a link? I'm not the brightest bulb in this chandelier.

Much more exciting news arrived in an email from a favorite reader who never comments. Jane Smiley is keeping a literary blog at The Huffington Post. She has apparently been posting on political matters, but now, she says, she wants to continue the work that she was doing in writing 13 Ways of Looking at the Novel. Her opening book: Shadowplay: The Hidden Beliefs and Coded Politics of William Shakespeare. A few of the comments are downright unpleasant, and I hope that they don't chill Ms Smiley's enthusiasm.

But what you must read is Dan Baum's "Deluged," in the current issue of The New Yorker. This report of the collapse of the New Orleans Police Department in the floodwaters of Katrina is truly horrific, not because of what happened but because of what might have happened when the city's civic architecture evaporated.


"Deluged" is a must read. Thank you, RJ, for bringing this to your readers' attention.

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