Is that hairline getting a little high on the sides? No—can't be.
That's me with Aeisha, my Iraqi barberess. Her shop on 4th Ave. (not a salon, as you can see by the Barbasol receptacle at bottom right) is one of the few places in Vancouver where you can still get the hot-shaving-cream-and-straight-razor treatment, although, to be honest, you can do better in five minutes with your Sensor and some intention. She says some guys make jokes about Iraq while she's scraping their throats with the razor. Reckless, say I.
The reason for the grooming is my temporary leap up the blogging food chain. Today I—drum roll set off in em dashes, please—started a summer internship at Emdashes, which is, as I explained to my family, the Internet's première site about The New Yorker. In no time, I'm sure, Mom will be telling everyone at work that I got a job at the magazine, an elision we should discourage.
I'm working from Vancouver, so the haircut isn't strictly necessary—Emdashes is based in NYC—but with a Kerouackian huzzah and a fit of '20s optimism I decided to make an offering of sideburns to the writing gods. You'll be the first to know how it goes. God, 'Kerouackian' has got to be my favorite name-based adjective.
I spent way too long labouring over my introduction, which, it's not hard to see, comes over as a weak slider for a ball. Give me time, though; it's a comfort zone thing.
Now that we're on the subject, Jack Kerouac reading from "On the Road," in a way both cool and strangely not—your call.
Harry Crosby reading John Updike's "On the Sidewalk," a spot-on Kerouac spoof first published, I believe, in The New Yorker. (I've got it in "Fierce Pajamas" a humor anthology edited by David Remnick and Henry Finder.)
Originally published on May 10, 2007