Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Footnote To A Conversation

Whenever I talk to someone I feel like I make so references to books, articles, TED Talks, etc. that I often follow up the conversation with an email with links to everything I mentioned. I'm not sure if this is weird or if it just means I'm detailed oriented, but I want to make sure everyone understands what I'm talking about. I'm like a digital version of your grandmother who sends newspaper clippings in the mail. (Here's an article about the Louis Armstrong house in Queens at Christmas! I think you'll like it!)

Below is a list of books and articles that for whatever reason have come up a lot lately. It will seem random, but will probably save me some emails over the next few days.

1. The Alienist: One of my favorite books about New York City in the 1890s. It all takes place downtown, which was still the center of Manhattan life. Some things never change, but life above 34th Street was considered remote.

2. Rats: Observations on the History and Habitat of the City's Most Unwanted Inhabitants: Several years ago a rat jumped through my apartment window and landed on an end table not far from my bed. At about 5:00 in the morning. (I didn't have a screen in. It was my fault.) It scared the jeepers out of me, but it also made me wonder if I was ever actually in any danger. Turns out, New York City rats are fascinating creatures, nocturnal, and mostly blind.

3. I love going on adventures in the Great Outdoors, but if I went alone someone would eventually have to send out a search party. I don't get lost when I go with Discover Outdoors.

4. Jen Armstrong explains why the writer/agent relationship is like dating. And why, when you find an agent that you like, you hang on tight. Oh, so tight.

5. The Confidence Gap: This piece has been spinning around the interwebs. It's worth a read.

6. Closing The Deal: The book to read if you're a woman in a long-term relationship and want your guy to get serious about marriage, or at least proposing. It's written by a man, so it's legit.

7. Marie Forleo: For all your small business and entrepreneurial needs.

8. Sh*t Girls Say About Money: It's two years old but every scene is so true. (And acted out by men in drag.) The ladies need to stop being so frivolous with their cheddah.

9. Brain pickings: Daily doses of intelligentsia. And they have an awesome Twitter feed.

10. Clubland: The Fabulous Rise and Murderous Fall of Club Culture: There's been a lot of coverage of Michael Alig lately, now that he got out of jail after 17 years for murdering his friend, Andre "Angel" Melendez. Most reports talk about the film Party Monster, the film about Alig which starred Macaulay Culkin.

Almost none of the coverage has mentioned Clubland, the Frank Owen book from 2003 that covers the murder case, and delves deep into the cultural factors around the club scene in early 1990s -- and pre-Guiliani -- New York City. This is actually the book to read to understand the whole story.