Damn the Kafkaesque, and Other News
April 16, 2014 | by Dan Piepenbring
- “The Pulitzer Prize is a human enterprise. Editors, past winners and a few Columbia University pooh-bahs comprise the board that awards them. Like all such collections of human beings, Pulitzer Boards are capable of brilliant good sense, and egregious errors.”
- Cynthia Ozick’s stirring defense of Kafka, the man: “Whoever utters ‘Kafkaesque’ has neither fathomed nor intuited nor felt the impress of Kafka’s devisings. If there is one imperative that ought to accompany any biographical or critical approach, it is that Kafka is not to be mistaken for the Kafkaesque.”
- Was the first-ever emoticon in a seventeenth-century poem? Maybe! But probably not.
- Thoughts on the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Mazda Miata: “I was frequently stopped while driving. Fellow Miata owners waved enthusiastically. Clubs were formed. People constantly made offers to buy my car. Miata is a car that’s worn like a jacket. The lithe driving dynamic is a second skin.”
- But the Miata was never endorsed by a man who’s walked on the moon: the only car to claim that honor is the Volkswagen Beetle, which found an unlikely advocate in Buzz Aldrin.