Saturday, June 13, 2009

". . . a nostalgic rant about the good old days that really weren't all that great."

In the Globe and Mail today, Our chum Brian Fawcett, on the obtuse style of Bryan Palmer's ambitious (i.e. 605 pages) Canada's 1960s: The Ironies of Identity in a Rebellious Era: "It's a style of exposition that excludes almost as much as it discloses, and it admits nothing of the true irony that history is infused with – the absurdity that makes you laugh both at it and at yourself. Not surprisingly, this is a book short on laughter. And as anyone who was around during the 1960s can tell you, for all the high drama, laughs weren't hard to come by. They were our way of reminding ourselves why we weren't hard-line Soviet-style Commies."

I should confess to being a great admirer of Fawcett, whose work is now and again the result of an intellectual and affectionate collaboration with my comrade Stan Persky, whose own work is also sometimes a product of that same collaboration: “We've got the same mind,”� Fawcett told me a while back. “I'm Anglican, unreasonable, and hetero. Stan's Jewish, reasonable, and gay. Between us, we make up a whole human being.” I should also confess that I'm posting this mainly to introduce the unitiated to Fawcett's work.

Brian (and Persky, and Brian's son Max, and so on) can often be found writing at Dooney's Cafe, here.

Here's a few of Fawcett's books:

Local Matters: A Defence of Dooney's Cafe and Other Non-Globalized Places, People and Ideas.

Cambodia: A Book For People Who Find Television Too Slow.

Public Eye: An Investigation Into the Disappearance of the World.

Virtual Clearcut (Or, The Way Things Are in My Hometown).

You're welcome.


Blogger richard said...

A heck of a writer, is Brian. I've read all four of those, plus a few others. Creatures of State, for example, with its funny/painful poem "Poetic Words," and My Career with the Leafs and Other Stories.

I wish I'd been able to stay for your panel at ASLE, but I hope it went well!

12:01 AM  

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