and failing. I am weary from travel and work and gift-wrapping. Beauty blogs would have you believe that the holiday season is one non-stop party, with brief pauses during which you can change from one sequined outfit to another and touch up your lip gloss before having another champagne to ward off the hangover. That sounds rather grand, if you have a driver, but I got to my in-laws' in Connecticut on Monday night and then didn't leave the house at all (literally, not even to stand in the driveway or stick my hand out a window) for three days. (I just broke my streak for a quick trip to Target.)
Here's the crappy thing about time: Everything doesn't start over fresh just because the last digit of the calendar year changes. So, yeah, 2013 was not our best year, and some of its badness will probably bleed into 2014. We can't just put the bad year behind us. Alas. One plus side of suffering (aside from all the art): Resolutions seem truly meaningless! So this new year we'll be making wishes instead.
Anyway, I just wanted to share a few quick links with you. The Self Unstable popped up on a few "best of the year" lists this week and this made me feel nice:
- The New Yorker asked contributors to name their favorite reads of the year. Teju Cole writes: "I found Elisa Gabbert’s The Self Unstable a wonderful surprise. It was the most intelligent and most intriguing thing I’ve read in a while, moving between lyric poetry, aphorism, and memoir, and with thoughts worth stealing on just about every page."
- In the Poetry Foundation's Staff Picks for 2013, Art Director for Poetry Fred Sasaki writes: "Let the lyric essay here be poetry, and thank you Black Ocean for sending Elisa Gabbert’s The Self Unstable in time for Xmas."
- And Christopher Higgs includes TSU in his 2013 Holiday Shopping Guide.
Thank you Teju, Fred, and Chris!
One more thing: I reviewed Une Rose Chypree, an amazing perfume, over at Bois de Jasmin. My first draft started with an elaborate metaphor involving accommodation, a concept in linguistics. The idea is that speakers accommodate to their interlocutors' speech patterns, meaning, if you have a conversation with someone who talks faster than you, you will start talking faster. This is especially true when you want that person to like you. I notice myself doing this all the time.
I have terrible posture when I'm sitting down. Bah, I just made a resolution.