TimesMagazineLand in Bad Decline

Deborah Solomon (so dumb that she persistently misspells her own name) is an easy target for ridicule. And rightfully so. This week's Times magazine Q & A was with George Saunders, and here are the highlights:

But some product names double as verbs. Like Bounce. Or Shout, the stain remover.

Or Pampers. What about Swiffers? That sounds like a verb.

What are Swiffers?

I like how Deborah qualifies Shout as "the stain remover" (Shout? The hearing aid?) and has no idea what a Swiffer is. That's just darling. Kudos for knowing her parts of speech, though.

It's true that "The Brady Bunch" creates its own imaginative universe, somewhat like fiction or any art form. You cannot say that about today's reality shows.

She obviously isn't familiar with America's Next Top Model, which is set in an imaginative universe in which unattractive people are told they're a few applications of Cover Girl away from being a supermodel.

These days you're teaching at Syracuse University and you've published two other short-story collections, "Pastoralia" and "CivilWarLand in Bad Decline." Might you try writing a novel in the future?

I just did. It's very innovative. It is only 25 pages long.

Ha, ha. I see you've also published a children's book, "The Very Persistent Gappers of Frip," which will be rereleased this month.

I will wager any amount of money that she actually said "ha, ha."

Snarkiness aside, I'm excited about Saunder's new collection of stories. It contains the previously mentioned (and linked to) Jon and probably a host of other things I've already read in the New Yorker, but fandom's a bitch. His Shouts & Murmurs piece in last week's issue is still online and worth a read.


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