8.08.2004

A couple of months ago, I saw David Sedaris @ Symphony Space, and I was going to mention it but I forgot until just now. It was totally rad, but that's not the point. One of the stories he presented as one of his favorites (read beautifully by Mary Beth Hurt) was Amy Hempel's "In The Cemetary Where Al Jolson Is Buried." It was stark and moving and just plain good, so if you're a short story fan and you haven't read it, do.

PS Her fabulous story-crafting is so not lost on Chuck Palahniuk, who really hearts her work. Noted:

You will never write this well. You won't learn this part until you've ruined a lot of paper, wasting your free time with a pen in one hand for years and years. At any horrible moment, you might pick up a copy of Hempel and find your best work is just a cheap rip-off of her worst.

I think Fight Club is a work of genius (or at the very least, dead-on social satire that makes Bergdorf Blondes look like, well, Bergdorf Blondes) so that's really saying something.

-Lauren
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