1:15 am, what a pleasing night...had dinner with a friend who is disturbingly witty/entertaining (and isn't a writer, so it's legit for me to modify that material for use in a book... a standard rule I learned from Lorrie Moore when she talked at yale), ate amazing food, had weird waitress who told us, about the rack of lamb, "it's highly recommended by my cat" and indeed it was excellent. went to friend's house, saw other friends, wrote section of novel in gmail docs on friend's computer, walked around, collaboratively created a new verb (to "level"--in parlance, to take something to a higher level; but a more specific meaning is to speak to someone in a metalanguage when they think they're being spoken to a more basic language... sarcasm being a basic example but also like if you hit on a girl by casually saying to her, "What's more important, art or science?"--causing her brain to go okay, this guy's hitting on me, asking me this silly question, okay, i'll answer it dutifully, but we all know the real intent here--and once she's answered it, you explain that the question you just asked is something a friend of yours is always asking girls as a quirky pretext to hit on them, and you are now trying it on random sample populations to test his assertion that it works... this is obviously absurd [and, it should be noted, does not and is not intended to "work"...not the point here] and vaguely insulting but mostly just confusing to her... you have "leveled" her), and then I got on the subway to go home and encountered Joshua Ferris and his wife, which is absurd, because just today he got nominated for the National fucking Book Award, which is obviously a huge honor. I congratulated him and talked for a bit and people around us were sort of trying to listen and surreptitiously staring like wait who's this guy, is he a celebrity... you should check out his book, I was reluctant to for a long time and whatever about a brief excerpt I read but then I started reading the book and was quickly persuaded of its quality.
Sickeningly busy in the past week. Writing reviews, revising Midnight Picnic (much more slowly than I ought to be), trying to write new stuff, dealing with a ton of day job stuff, eating, honoring obligations that I made before I realized how insanely busy these two weeks were going to be, like having multiple dinners on the same day with different people. So some things are annoying right now but other things are pleasing, even highly pleasing. I've met a couple people I like. It's strange when that happens because I dislike so many people. Mike Young, editor of Noo Journal, was crashing on my couch for a bit. He visited New York, that's good. I saw Benny's Video at MoMA; very grim movie. How many times do you need to see a pig get shot in the head? Going to see Funny Games, which I like a lot, on Monday; had to run up there today to buy some advance tickets in person. Also I'll be reading 10/24 at my friend's reading series, Guerrilla Lit. More later.