Posts by: Melissa Tan

The NYT Offends with its Sunday Book Review of Zone One

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A literary novelist writing a genre novel is like an intellectual dating a porn star, right?  Well that’s what New York Times book reviewer Glen Duncan thinks.

In his Sunday Book Review of Colson Whitehead’s complex new zombie novel, Zone One, Duncan sets the parallel between dating porn stars and what he initially perceives as slumming in genre fiction, and lets the rest of the review ride on the back of this comparison.  While he’s busy offending sex workers, he also speculates that readers attracted to the story for its post-apocalyptic zombie tale will encounter so many big words as to be morally affronted.  Duncan praises the book and comes around to the idea of intellectually stimulating genre fiction, but never quite comes around to the idea of sex workers as intellectually stimulating people, concluding of his imaginary couple only that, “they look pretty good together.”

The piece came to our attention via a witty retort by Savvy stripper and staff writer over at Tits and Sass, Bubbles (whose thoughts on this issue you can read here):

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SPOTLIGHT SERIES: Tom Gauld

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Tom Gauld is an illustrator, cartoonist, and publisher.  His finished pieces range from animated advertisements to book illustrations, as well as the weekly comic strips he produces for the Guardian.  Whether he’s drawing a campaign for one of the UK’s largest drug stores or illustrating a book of monsters, Tom’s drawing style is intimate and concise, reflective of an artistic process that uses technology without relying on it.

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Notable San Francisco, This Week: 3/21-3/27

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This week in San Francisco, Lit&Lunch, a book club meeting with Intersection for the Arts, radio magazine, The [Un]observed, launches at OHIO Studio, and the Portuguese Artists Colony celebrates its first birthday at Fivepoints Arthouse.

Monday 3/21: Ever wondered about the work of a Broadway set and costume designer?  Head to the Museum of Performance & Design for Designers on Design: A Conversation with Tony Walton.

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Notable San Francisco, This Week: 3/14-3/20

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This week in San Francisco, The Monthly Rumpus puts on its best pasties, the San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival is on, and food culture rocks SFMoMA with Sidebar: Wine! at How Wine Became Modern.

Monday 3/14: Catch some titillating literature — and, oh, Lady Monster: Queen of the Fire Tassels — at March’s Monthly Rumpus.

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Notable San Francisco, This Week: 3/7-3/13

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This week in San Francisco, Quiet Lightning moves to North Beach, Janine Brito and Emily Heller get hilarious at the Punchline, Andrew Sean Greer’s The Islanders takes to the stage, and Rumpus Managing Editor, Isaac Fitzgerald, gets his literary Casanova on at Fivepoints Arthouse’s Tales of Tail.

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Notable San Francisco, This Week: 2/28-3/6

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This week in San Francisco, Feast of Words, film night at the San Francisco Buddhist Center, Babylon Salon at Cantina, and raise money for public health with your mouth full at Cupcakes for Choice!

Monday 2/28: Catch Stone Fox & Bangs at Cat’s Pajamas’ last show at the Makeout Room.

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Notable San Francisco, This Week: 2/7-2/13

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This week in San Francisco, get in bed with Quiet Lightning, Microscopic Giant at Space Gallery, Laughter Against The Machine, Andrew Foster Altschul’s book launch, Literary Death Match, Stephen Elliott reads at BANG OUT X: Tough Love, and the Anger Management Reading Series presents Hostile Takeover.

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Notable San Francisco, This Week: 1/31-2/6

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This week in San Francisco, Airplane! takes over the Castro Theater, Feast of Words: Sensory Feast, a free Valentine’s Day Etsy Labs Craft Bar, Mirah & Thao, and The Dude abides at the 8th Annual Lebowski Party.

Monday 1/31: As another SF Sketchfest draws to a close, catch a special screening + Q&A with the creators of Airplane!

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Notable San Francisco, This Week: 1/24-1/30

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This week in San Francisco: Clown Burlesque, stories about food, art shows, magazine readings, and Cyclops Wearing Flip Flops.

Monday 1/24: This month at Cat’s Pajamas, get your regular dose of burlesque with a side of clown as Dottie Lux co-hosts the monthly show of music and steamy performances.  $5, 21+, 8pm @ 3225 22nd Street.

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Notable San Francisco, This Week: 1/17-1/23

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This week in San Francisco, Sketchfest continues, find out what happens when we become Overconnected, pitch your epic sci-fi murder-mystery memoir poem at Booksmith’s Pitchapalooza, and get de-virginized at Cell Space’s Rocky Horror Live!

Monday 1/17: See the comics that kicked off Sketchfest a decade ago at their 10 Year Reunion Show.

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Notable San Francisco, This Week: 1/10-1/16

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This week in San Francisco: Finally muster the courage to hit on that one cute chick/dude at this month’s Monthly Rumpus, decorate your pad like it’s 1982 and you just got Walk Among Us at Pops’ Cheap Art Show: Skull Edition, get your nerd on at Techshop’s Open House, and check out SF Sketchfest.

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Notable San Francisco, This Week: 1/3-1/9

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This week in San Francisco, catch a variety of monthly events in the new year: Feast of Words, Craft Bar with Etsy Labs, and San Francisco Bike Party.

Monday 1/3: See some funny queers at QComedy‘s first show of the month.  Marie Lake, Kurt Weitzmann, Nick Leonard, and “FemCee” drag queen Cookie Dough take the stage this month at the comedy show that Martuni’s hosts every first Monday of the month.  $5-15 sliding scale, 21+, 7:30pm @ 4 Valencia Street.

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Notable San Francisco, This Week: 12/27-1/2

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This week in San Francisco: Whether this is your adopted home or you’ve lived here all your life, re-discover the city as you begin another year of living here.  Let’s face it, you’re still tired from the holidays and you’re probably saving up your energy for New Year’s Eve, so why waste your time at New Year’s resolution themed singles mixers and monthly dance parties when you could be discovering the concrete slides on Steward Street or the fascinatingly creepy arcade games at Musée Mécanique?

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Notable San Francisco, This Week: 12/20-12/26

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This week in San Francisco, eat for a cause with Food Not Bombs, open mics at Amnesia and Kaleidoscope, Post-Impressionists at the De Young, and volunteer work gets fun at City Impact’s Christmas Block Party.

Monday 12/20: Joint Food Not Bombs in Union Square for a Sit/Eat against Sit/Lie.

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Notable San Francisco, This Week: 12/13-12/19

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This week in San Francisco, it’s Ladies Night at The Rumpus!  Also, Dave Eggers plays ping pong, art for the blind, sitting and lying in protest of the Sit/Lie law, and crafty alternatives to traditional holiday shopping.

Monday 12/13: What do the Jackson Arms Shooting Range and The Rumpus have in common today?  It’s Ladies Night!  We’ve teamed up with Flavorpill for an evening of readings, comedy, and music by women to celebrate the release of Rumpus Women, Vol.

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Notable San Francisco, This Week: 12/6-12/12

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This week in San Francisco, Granta at City Lights, literature meets food at Feast of Words and to-the-death battle at Literary Death Match, and Believer Magazine hangs out at Electric Works.

Monday 12/6: Celebrate issue 113 of Granta magazine at City Lights with readings by Daniel Alarcón, Carlos Labbé, Andrés Felipe Solano, and Carlos Yushimito.

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Notable San Francisco, This Week: 11/22-11/28

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This week, art porn at 111 Minna, a list of the best Mission bars to spend Thanksgiving at, do good this Black Friday at Creative Housing Liberation’s Housing Harvest, and a Murder Mystery Dinner!

Monday 11/22: Attend an extra-festive Cat’s Pajamas at the Makeout Room and see performers Eggplant Casino, Naima Shalhoub, Sanxe Loveji, and the Bollyhood Dancers.

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Notable San Francisco, This Week: 11/8-11/14

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This week in San Francisco, The November Monthly Rumpus, art openings at City Hall and White Walls, indie circus goodness and a musical orgy(!) at the Bohemian Carnival, and kinetic visual sculptures meet improvised electroacoustic shamanic noise jazz (don’t worry, I’m confused, too) at Artists’ Television Access.

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Notable San Francisco, This Week: 11/1-11/7

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This week in San Francisco, the Booksmith hosts some radical readings, Last Gasp teams up with 111 Minna for a showing of legendary Japanese erotica, SoEx’s Cinema by The Bay, and the Day of the Dead!

Monday 11/1: A struggling artist mother, Bolshevik assassinations in the family, and enduring the pre-swan years of her ugly duckling syndrome drove Kate Moses to seek solace in the kitchen.  Her new memoir, Cakewalk, is the story of Moses’ life before becoming an acclaimed author and Salon editor.  The Booksmith celebrates with a launch party tonight at 7:30pm.  Free and all ages @ 1644 Haight Street.

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Notable San Francisco, This Week: 10/25-10/31

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This week: How Language Shapes Thought, the final Kaliedoscope Reading Series of the year, Muni Diaries Live! at the Makeout Room, and San Francisco’s favorite holiday (after Folsom Street Fair and LoveFest) — Halloween!

Monday 10/25: While The Rumpus’ book club is an international endeavor, our monthly In-Person Discussions at the infamous Booksmith give Bay Area book club members (and prospective bibliophiles) a chance for some real live social interaction.  This month: Adam Levin’s The Instructions.

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