I’ve been obsessed with Curtis Sittenfeld since I read Prep in 2007. Because of the initial, largely female driven success of that novel, Sittenfeld has been sometimes relegated to chick-lit. She’s not chick-lit; she just writes about the undesired woman. (And sometimes fan-fic about the First Lady.) Any time I see one of her books in someone’s home, I’m optimistic about a new friendship.
But my fandom has led to some questionable action: years ago, when the fact that two people were on Facebook was somewhat of a coincidence, I befriended Sittenfeld’s little brother, P.G. Though this remains weird, I really enjoy being P.G.’s Facebook friend. He’s a City Councilman in Cincinnati and has more civic pride than anyone I know, online or off.
Yesterday, he posted a video of himself introducing his sister at a reading at their old school. His speech was equal parts sentimental and jabbing. When Curtis came out, she made some jokes about P.G. having 1.5 suits, and also made reference to getting Skyline chili with her dad, which calls to mind an old segment of This American Life.
There’s something humanizing about this video. Here we have a New York Times best selling author having an annoying but lovable little brother and talking about sleeping at her parents’ house and forgetting how to use their shower. It’s a reminder that creative people are still people.
Other things I liked this week:
- Zadie Smith’s Q&A about her recent short story, The Embassy of Cambodia.
- Satisfaction Not Guaranteed: Reading Lance Armstrong by Ian Crouch.
- Plugging In, Dutch Put Electric Cars to the Test, Elisabeth Rosenthal.