This is John Hodgman writing via THE OVERNIGHT ELECTRO-MAIL regarding…
THE AREAS OF MY EXPERTISE
…a compendium of amazing true facts, historical oddities, and esoteric trivia that are almost exclusively MADE UP, by me, JOHN HODGMAN, a professional writer.
(SEE: A WEBSITE )
Tonight it is either 5 or 6 October, 2005, and I greet you, unasked for with:
……INFORMATION REGARDING LITTLE GRAY BOOK LECTURE NO. 32…… ……TRUE FACTS ABOUT PHILADELPHIA…… ……”INTERNET” NEWS…… ……THAT IS ALL……
PART ONE: INFORMATION REGARDING LITTLE GRAY BOOK LECTURE NO. 32
The aforementioned LECTURE, on the subject of “How to Prepare Manuscripts for Publication”
SHALL IN FACT OCCUR
On Oct 19, 2005, a Wednesday, at 8PM, in the traditional location: “Galapagos”
and shall welcome…
MARK ADAMS, discussing the muscular genius of Bernarr McFadden, visionary of both literary and physical culture;
CYNTHIA HOPKINS, the renowned singer, speaker, and accordionist;
ROBERT FARRIS THOMPSON, of Yale, who has tamed the Tango and pressed it into the pages of “a book.”
…AMONG ILLUSTRIOUS OTHERS…
…and also some material from a book that is being published IN OCTOBER.
GALAPAGOS, as you know, is located at 70 N. 6th Street, between Kent and Wythe, in Williamsburg, Brooklyn… “Take the L train and alight a Bedford Avenue”
A $5 donation shall be requested at the door by POTTS, if he is back from China.
PART TWO: TRUE FACTS ABOUT PHILADELPHIA
Working in reverse chronological order, I wish to discuss with you: Philadelphia.
As you certainly know, the 215 Festival of Philadelphia has presented the citizens of that historic city (colloquially known as “brotherly-lovers” or “mummers”) with THE QUESTIONABLE BLESSING OF LITERARY READINGS for the past several autumns.
This autumn shall be no exception, as you will see if you go to the internet (SEE: www.215festival.com)
I have had the pleasure of hosting several events at the 215 over the years, including one reading at the Free Library of Philadelphia, during which a member of the audience kindly went out and bought me whiskey IN THE MIDDLE OF THE READING--and brought me back change.
It was remarkable, proving what I have always maintained: IN PHILADELPHIA, THE PEOPLE ARE KIND, AND THE WHISKEY IS CHEAPER THAN ALMANACS!
At this year’s festival, Coulton and I shall be presenting some material from a certain book that is being published IN OCTOBER at that city’s beautiful MUSEUM OF ART…
This shall occur ON FRIDAY, Oct 7, at 5:45PM, in between sets from the gypsy band BEAU DJANGO (SEE: www.philamuseum.org/events/friday).
…thus leaving you plenty of time to see ONE RING ZERO that evening and all of the Festival’s other fine offerings.
In gratitude, I dedicate to the 215 this excerpt from A BOOK TO BE PUBLISHED IN OCTOBER, which was first spoken upon the stage of that same Free Library, about 2000 years ago…
FAST FACTS ABOUT PHILADELPHIA
DID YOU KNOW?
-The word Philadelphia, from the Greek, literally means “Pennsylvania.”
-It has the highest number, per capita, of Benjamin Franklin impersonators in the country.
-Someday all of the Benjamin Franklin impersonators will fight all of the Mark Twain impersonators, flooding valleys and destroying whole towns in their wake, until nothing is left. I wanted to see Phila once more before that happened.
-Harrison Ford lives here and protects Amish children
-Bryn Mawr College, a small but esteemed school of witchcraft in the city’s western suburbs, is sometimes visible by day.
-Philadelphia is at the cutting edge of some of the most exciting new developments in sandwich technology today. The sandwiches here are so large and complex and sublime that in they contain whole philosophies. Some have the complete oral traditions of several ancient cultures hidden within the roll alone.
-Philadelphia was one of the 13 East Coast cities called “home” by Edgar Allen Poe, and it was here that he hosted the first of his many Christmas Literary Extravaganzas. Held in 1839, it was, by contemporary accounts, a grand affair, involving feats of literary memorization and drunken sword canery, and a chorus line of murderous orangutans. Poe was dressed as Santa Claus, but at this point in his career this was hardly unusual. After reciting Tamerlane, he famously brought out his child bride Virginia and seated her on his lap. What would you like from Santa this year, he asked. And she replied “the modern detective story.” And so he invented then and there, writing The Murders in the Rue Morgue using only a checkers board, a bottle of brandy, a map of Paris. At this point, the Police chased Poe back to Baltimore.
WERE YOU AWARE OF IT?
PART THREE: “INTERNET” NEWS
Elsewhere on the Internet, the 700 HOBO NAMES ARE UP at
All I have to say is: one take. I trust that is sufficiently cryptic to pique your interest.
(NB: Apparently the internet alread knows. Thank you, Tristeza.
PART FOUR: THAT IS ALL
THAT IS ALL.