Saturday, July 31, 2010


I saw a sloth today! A real sloth! Also bats. I took my son to the Cranbrook Institute of Science for the Great Lakes Bat Festival, which means he also saw a sloth and also bats. His Aunt Laura accompanied us. Since my son is one year old, this would be the first ever sloth he's ever seen and the first bats. The sloth was very active when we were there, crawling along the ceiling of his cage with his huge gnarly toenails. Then he got a strip of yellow squash out of a basket and hung there looking at us and eating it. A woman who worked there told me that since his digestion is so slow they carefully monitor his diet and weigh what he eats so he doesn't eat too much (I think). She also told me he's litter box trained and pointed to a litter box in the corner of his cage. He only goes every three days, she said, and she's been told it's very stinky but she's never witnessed it herself. I am not sad that I, too, did not get to witness this. I am not sure why there is a sloth housed in Cranbrook's Bat Zone, but it certainly was an amazing thing to see. The Bat Zone as a whole smells very strongly of pee. Just a heads-up.

If you're into bats, definitely check out the Organization for Bat Conservation.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Emily Kendal Frey is totally a winner

And now her book of poetry, The Grief Performance, will be published thanks to the 2010 Cleveland State University First Book Prize and judge Rae Armantrout. And I will pay real live money for this book once it's published in Spring 2011. And you should, too.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Look at this fucking Poets & Writers cover

I can't even really tell you how much I like that the cover of the latest issue of Poets & Writers is featured on Look at this fucking hipster. Although to be fair, James Kaelan is a fiction writer, not a poet as LATFH suggests.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Monkeys are #1

Monkeys top the list of Time's July 19 Top 10 Militant Animals list. For whatever reason humans are not on the included.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Hey, we didn't kill the slender loris after all!

Scientists thought the slender loris was extinct. But apparently it isn't. So hooray for humans for not killing something for a change. Granted, it's probably only a matter of time. :(

Win a gorilla, my ninjas

You know, I totally wasn't even going to go to the annual Gathering of the Juggalos this year. Until, 20 seconds into this video I saw that you can win giant stuffed gorillas there. And they show them again at about 10 minutes and 57 seconds in. Also there will be seminars? Because it's like college? I don't know. All I know is I've got to get me a Juggalo gorilla.

Via Videogum.

Friday, July 16, 2010

If "Howl" were written today

A really awesome "Howl" parody over at McSweeney's. Though calling it a "parody" really doesn't seem right. You'll see.

Via Buzzfeed.

Monkey guns for hire

Taliban fighter monkeys? Is this real life?

Don't they know that by giving monkeys guns they're only hastening the monkey world take over?

Via Buzzfeed.

Fluffy specimens

There is, no doubt, a monkey to be found somewhere on this shelf.

Ginsberg on film

Actually it's James Franco as Ginsberg in Howl, the new Allen Ginsberg biopic, but still. Also stars David Strathairn, Alan Alda, Jeff Daniels, Mary-Louise Parker, Paul Rudd and Jon Hamm. Looks okay, though I fear it will be ham-fisted and overly long like, say, Kinsey.

Via Videogum.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Gorilla rugby hunk

A rather awesome photos posted in the comments section on Videogum. I've never understood rugby, which is why it makes sense to hand the game over to gorillas.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Vs. verse

If you like poems about sports, here are a bunch of them courtesy of Carol Ann Duffy. She is, after all, a lesbian and a poet, which automatically makes her an expert.

Added bonus: apparently kids these days use the term "verse" as a verb. As in, "I'm going to verse you at recess." If only this meant that they were having little poetry slams. That would be the best.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Monkey and Poetry Convergence: Joe Henry edition

In his new book Rock and Roll Will Save Your Life: A Book by and for the Fanatics Among Us, Steve Almond mentally connects Joe Henry, whose 1999 album Fuse not only opens with a song titled "Monkey" but also features a photo of Henry with a literal monkey on his back, to the Iliad to Faulkner, which may just be a first. This results in the epiphany that,"The connection in my head being that all language began in song and that the best stories inevitably return to song, to a state of rapture. For years, I had assumed that throwing beautiful words at the page would make my prose feel true. But I had the process exactly backward. It was truth that lifted the language into beauty and toward song."

As they say in French, c'est possible.

Almond, a huge Joe Henry fan, then writes about the time Henry sent him a poem to read and asked for feedback. Almond thought, "Holy shit, Joe Henry just sent me something to read."

The poem, writes Almond, started out good. But then "the poem's pathos sputtered into rage. There was a lot about how stupid Americans are. Red Bull was cited, as were the ravages of global warming. I was reminded (unpleasantly) of my own writing. And thus my next thought: I'm going to have to tell Joe Henry that his poem kind of sucks."

Thankfully he didn't have to. Henry turned the poem into song lyrics, the resulting song, according to Almond, capturing "the dream of America as a holy wilderness whose decline is properly understood as a cause for lamentation, not sermons."

You can listen to a demo of Joe Henry's "Our Song" as part of Almond's "Bitchin' Soundtrack" to his new book. It's a really good way to spend 5 minutes and 46 seconds of your life.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Get those Steampunk monkeys out of Pleasantville!

Get our yer crayons. This should take you awhile.

Via Boing Boing.

Thanks, Laura, for the tip.

Monkey and Poetry Convergence: Kyle Stone edition

Kyle Stone, a children's book illustrator and the man behind The Tickled Ape, did the paintings for the 2005 book Please Bury Me in the Library, a collection of poems for children about reading by J. Patrick Lewis.

Stone is also kinda friends with my sister's girlfriend. Small world, eh?

His art is really awesome and you should check it out. On his blog he has several posts about the Please Bury Me in the Library art, including models, cover art, and drawings (and more drawings).