Pale Wire (Popscene)

Friday, March 25, 2005

Holiday, Holiday

Spring break in Iowa. Too much good food, too much free time.

I've been doing my best to avoid any sort of productive work by reading novels, eating ice cream and listening to music all day (New Spoon: Bad, New Fischerspooner: Good).

There's been one, two, three detective novels by German author Jakob Arjouni, James Watson's famed -- and rather scandalous -- account of the discovery of the structure of DNA, George Orwell getting his reporter on, before getting his PolitCrit on, in The Road to Wigan Pier and Hermann Hesse being, well, Hermann Hesse, in his novel Damian.

The Arjouni novels are darn interesting. They're brief little bits of genre fiction in the vein of Raymond Chandler and Mickey Spillane which can be read in a couple hours time. His P.I. is Kemal Kayankaya, a bier slugging Turk living in Frankfurt who is not only an outsider by trade but also by birth. It's neat to see an American artform adapted into a different culture, sort of like the British grime and Indian bhangra I've been listening to a lot lately but with Humphrey Bogart and Philip Marlowe reimagined instead of Dr. Dre and the Wu-Tang Clan.