The Daily

Posts Tagged ‘titles’

Keep Calm and—Stop It, Just Stop It, and Other News

June 27, 2014 | by

keep calm

Even the creators of the slogan didn’t like it.

  • Bernard-Henri Lévy remains, at sixty-five, the paragon of “noble insolence”: “Responding to a recent query from a Parisian newspaper about the secret of his perpetual youth, his advice was, ‘Don’t spend time with boring people.’ The unbuttoned white shirt—he tells interviewers that he would choke otherwise—is a form of social provocation that he doubtlessly relishes; it also constitutes a dandyish parlor trick, leading otherwise shrewd judges of character and intellectual talent to underestimate his political acumen and Puritan work habits.”
  • The “Keep Calm and Carry On” poster that launched millions of profoundly vacuous parodies is seventy-five years old today—but it was only first seen in 2001. The British Treasury refrained from printing it during World War II because they thought “the phrase was ‘too commonplace to be inspiring … it may even annoy people.’” Prescient.
  • Have novelists exhausted the supply of decent titles? Last year saw two books called Life After Life; this year there’s Remember Me This Way and Remember Me Like This; and Stephen King’s Joyland came eight years after Erica Schultz’s Joyland.
  • Celebrity novels, reviewed: Chuck Norris’s The Justice Riders “wraps up with Justice sharing the gospel with Mordecai, then shooting him dead after the bad guy rejects Jesus—which is sort of Norris’s worldview in a nutshell.”
  • To catch a (phone) thief: “You’d NEVER send a message with the incorrect ‘your’—no matter how plastered you are!”


Down to the Wireless

April 23, 2014 | by

Mike Licht flickr women of wifi

Mike Licht, Women of Wi-Fi, after Caillebotte. Image via Flickr

Someone in my building—or maybe two different people, I don’t know—rejoices in cruel, taunting names for his wireless networks: “MineNotYours” and “NoFreeLunch.” “I’m just going to go out on a limb here,” my old boyfriend once said, “and speculate that this person is an asshole.”

But is he? Riding in the elevator or passing neighbors in the hall, I often wonder who it might be—the retired nurse upstairs? The mild-mannered gentleman with the rescue dogs? The 103-year-old who sits with her nurse in the lobby? Does someone have a small, secret life as a righteous, anonymous enforcer? Read More »

Ye Olde Grease Lightning, and Other News

September 12, 2013 | by


  • San Francisco-based Arion Press—the last full-service letterpress in America—is in pursuit of the perfect book.
  • “Think of such trends in titles as the publishing industry’s version of ombré hair or white Chuck Taylors.” The word land in titles is all the rage for F/W. 
  • Let the record show: say syllabuses, not syllabi.
  • “Today there is literature coming out of Syria that we could have never even dreamed of just a few years ago.” Political turmoil has given birth to a new wave of Syrian poetry
  • In which college students act out scenes from Grease in Old English.


    Giant Mr. Darcy Terrorizes London, and Other News

    July 9, 2013 | by


    • A twelve-foot fiberglass Mr. Darcy is currently standing in the middle of Hyde Park’s Serpentine Lake, and is terrifying.
    • A new analytics tool claims it can detect sarcasm in online comments. But the best part: “Its clients include the Home Office, EU Commission and Dubai Courts.”
    • The artist formerly known as “the” is now represented by the symbol Ћ.
    • Book titles missing one (key) letter.
    • A scientifically accurate “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star.” Sample lyric: “Thirty-two light years in the sky / Ten parsecs which is really high.”



    Weirdest Titles of the Year

    February 22, 2013 | by


    Forget the Oscars: what we’re interested in is the Diagram Prize, which rewards the oddest title of the year. The shortlist follows; vote for your favorite before March 22 at We Love This Book.

    Goblinproofing One’s Chicken Coop, by Reginald Bakeley

    God’s Doodle: The Life and Times of the Penis, by Tom Hickman

    How Tea Cosies Changed the World, by Loani Prior 

    How to Sharpen Pencils, by David Rees 

    Lofts of North America: Pigeon Lofts, by Jerry Gagne 

    Was Hitler Ill?, by Hans-Joachim Neumann and Henrik Eberle