It rained really hard last Friday evening. I was writing at the kitchen table and looked up to see the window suddenly splattered with rain. “Look at the weather, Thom,” I said, “It’s crazy.”
This is called a bid. Thom answered my bid and came to the window.
“I love picking out the people who don’t have an umbrella,” he said.
A few moments later, he emitted a bro-ish guffaw, “Oh man, that lady’s getting sogged!”
Anyway, Thom’s thoughts this Thursday.
- Thom has finally finished Alexander Hamilton.
“How was it?” I asked, thinking he might have a lot to say since the book is 832 pages (though quite a few of those are endnotes).
“Oh it was pretty good.”
- He has now moved on to The Dark Forest, Book 2 of a trilogy by Cixin Liu, China’s “most beloved” science fiction writer. Thom read Book 1, The Three Body Problem a few months ago and wanted to read Book 2, but it wasn’t available on Amazon until recently.
“How are you liking Book Two?” I asked Thom.
“I’m on page 3,” he said.
“How did you find Book 1?”
“Oh I dunno, it was alright. If you like books by Chinese guys about space and shit.”
It’s really a marvel Thom doesn’t have a career in writing book reviews. I’m guessing he’ll want to read Book 3, Death’s End, but it won’t be available until April 2016.
- As some of you might know, last Thursday Thom and I watched “The Martian.” We sat through a handful of trailers and Thom had a lot of thoughts :
- On the trailer for “The Forest“: “That looks like an awful knockoff of “The Blair Witch Project.”
- On the trailer for “Crimson Peak“: “That looks awful. There should be a rule against allowing horror movie trailers to be played before non-horror movies.”
“I want to watch it,” I said. I liked the cast and Guillermo Del Toro.
“Ugh. Why?” Thom said, “I hate horror movies. Everyone is so mean.”
- On the trailer for “Joy “, which was not a horror movie and which stars Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper: “I wish I could rip out Bradley Cooper’s face and replace it with someone else’s face so I wouldn’t have to look at his fucking face ever again.”
- And then the movie started and we both enjoyed it, until I went home and realized I had some issues with it, not least because the story (as it did in the book), lacks an emotional arc.
“Why?” Thom said, “That’s why I liked it. It’s a movie about science and problem-solving. It’s not some feeling-fest.”
- On Sunday, we finally visited the new Whitney Museum of American Art in Meatpacking (thanks Steph!). Thom and I shared a disdain for more than a few pieces in the permanent collection, especially installations like this and this, which seemed to be by homeless people with limited resources rather than serious artists.
However, the Whitney has a few by my favorite Edward Hopper, and Thom and I both got a kick out of this painting of a heater aptly titled, “Heater.”
By the time we came to the following painting Thom and I were tired, Thom perhaps a bit more so:
“What is that? A green triangle? There isn’t a bench on this whole floor.”
Later, I looked up the painting and told Thom, who was reading on the couch, that the artist had just turned 100 and had painted the green triangle in 1959.
He looked up from The Dark Forest, his expression unchanged, “Wow, so the painting’s sucked for fifty years.”