Taking and Making: February 27

Today, I took in:

The 13th documentary (review tomorrow!)


I made:

a really lovely dinner with friends at a place that redefined daal for me



Taking and Making: February 26

Today, I took in:

Joyce Carol Oates’ “By the River,” Donald Barthelme’s “The School,” and Stanley Elkin’s “The Conventional Wisdom” in 100 Years of the Best American Short Stories

an episode of Person of Interest


I made:

not much, it was a chilly day and I mostly did work and tried to stay warm

Black History Month: The Underground Railroad

Colson Whitehead’s The Underground Railroad is an absolute pageturner; I read it in three days. The most immediately recognizable “oh that’s different” thing about this novel is that it posits that there is an actual, physical railroad ferrying slaves to freedom underneath the earth during the first half of the 19th century. But for me, the most notable thing about this novel is its approach to historical truth: everything written here is true, just not in the time that Whitehead writes about it.


“Now that she had run away and seen a bit of the country, Cora wasn’t sure the [Declaration of Independence] described anything real at all. America was a ghost in the darkness, like her.”

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Taking and Making: February 21

Today, I took in:

the rest of The Underground Railroad (review forthcoming!)

the Handel Hendrix House in Mayfair — Hendrix lived at 23 Brook Street for a couple years during the height of his fame, and Handel lived the latter half of his life at 25 Brook Street


I made:

a rash decision to accept a large canvas print of Sydney Harbor, which a colleague was throwing out unless it found a good home — the living room is now a bit more international