Thursday, October 11, 2007

Hanging on the telephone

I ought to be at work on the novel, but I'm sitting in front of the computer waiting for a phone call from the UK, so in the meantime, here's an article from the New Scientist (who have recently mostly rendered their website useless, even, pretty much now, to subscribers but have this up in full)
Geoffrey Miller and his team at the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, compared the earnings of lap dancers who were menstruating naturally with those of dancers taking the hormonal contraceptive pill. During the non-fertile periods of their menstrual cycle, both sets of dancers earned similar tips. But when naturally cycling lap dancers entered their fertile period they earned significantly more in tips than their co-workers on the pill...

Vanity Fair
on Sushi .

People have been sending me links to: A Where Do You Get Your Ideas cartoon that made me smile, and to a blogpost on infixing and stressed syllables...

(Several people wrote in to let me know that there are other examples of infixing in English than swearing, but with the exception of some chemical names I can't see that they actually change the meaning or emphasis of the word. Edumacation and hizouse simply demonstrate that, yes, you can put other syllables into a word, Ned Flanders-like for comedic effect or as cant.)

I was delighted to see that Barry Humphries (here seen being interviewed with his protege, Dame Edna Everage) is now a Commander of the British Empire, and not just because Michael Swanwick was kind enough to send me a signed copy of his book-length essay on James Branch Cabell - WHAT CAN BE SAVED FROM THE WRECKAGE? JAMES BRANCH CABELL IN THE TWENTIETH CENTURY - with an introduction by, and also signed to me by Mr Humphries. Hurrah. (Read about the book here.)

I love Michael's essay, although I'm not entirely convinced by it. (Michael feels that Cabell doomed himself to obscurity. I think it was more time, and fashion what dun it.)

I enjoyed this Jamy Ian Swiss interview with Derren Brown. I love what Derren does, but I tend to feel uncomfortable when I read interviews by journalists who fail to notice that Derren is a magician and not a miracle worker. I don't know of any other interview with him by a magician where they talk about the difference between the trick and the effect...

Ooops. That's the phone. Going now.

Nearly forgot: Here's the New York Times review of The Wolves in the Walls.