Friday, July 06, 2007

What is a beach book, anyway?

I've picked up a few shifts at Beth's Books, which is located next to Sound Cafe, where I end up spending a lot of time anyway. The bookstore, which is mostly used, has been here for nearly two years, but business is a bit slow. Which is why I'm posting this. (In other words, please, please come by...)

One of the things we did recently was create a section devoted to Beach Books, which led to a discussion of "What is a beach book?" So we now have three shelves: Trashy Beach Books, Deeply Intellectual Vacation Reading, and "Maybe not so deep". We have Stephen King, Nanny Diaries, Picolt, Hoffman, Shreve, and also Ernest Gaines, Anne Tyler, Jonathan Franzen. I'm sure someone has read The Corrections on a beach.

We also have, elsewhere in the store, lots of great old books, and a section of new ones: the new DeLillo, the new Al Gore, the new Ian McEwan. And magazine: The Believer, Virginia Quarterly Review, The New York Review of Books, Yoga Journal, Rolling Stone. So come get a cup of coffee and something to read.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Meanwhile, in Jefferson Parish, Mexican food is now illegal

Well, not quite. But almost. Jefferson Parish, for those who aren't from here, is the suburban "county" that borders Orleans Parish. It is the Parish whose police used the threat of gunfire to force people back into flooded Orleans Parish during the hurricane. And now they are trying to outlaw the taco trucks that arrived with construction workers after the storm. Most of my friends have been totally psyched by the arrival of actual Mexican food. But the leadership of Jefferson Parish feels that the presence of Mexican food is an uncomfortable reminder of the hardships faced after the storm. So they are ticketing and fining the operators of these mobile kitchens. This is a great of example of many hideous things, but also of just how lucky Jefferson Parish has been if a taco is an example of the worst that has happened to them.

Tonight: Youth Music Clinic, Free Agents, and a reading by Pia Z.

I'll take a break from my complaints today to announce some events taking place this evening at Sound Cafe/Beth's Books:

from 6-7pm, Pia Z. Ehrhardt will read from her new collection of stories Famous Fathers, along with Myriam Gurba will read from Dahlia Season. At Beth's Books next to Sound Cafe at 2700 Chartres.

Simultanously, in the Cafe, members of the Free Agents will be conducting a music clinic for kids, so if you have a kid, or know any, send them over.

And at 7pm, the Free Agents will perform.