For the past year or so, the German Book Office has been putting together short videos with German readers (critics, translators, agents, etc.) talking about titles featured in the New Books in German publication. All of these are available here, and in honor of the 30th edition of New Books in German, they created a “Behind the Scenes” video which you can watch below.
It’s also worth checking out the specific book videos. So far, it looks like the only one available from the new issue is Cathrin Wirtz presenting The All Land by Jo Lendle.
Via Laughing Squid:
The short film, Skwerl, gives a glimpse on how the English language sounds to foreigners using clever English-sounding gibberish. Directed by Brian Fairbairn and written, acted and edited by Karl Eccleston, this melodrama was made for Kino Sydney, “a monthly open-mic night for filmmakers” based in Sydney, Australia. Australian actress Fiona Pepper plays the female lead.
This is kind of an inside joke going public, but whatever . . . Summer Fridays are the best time for slightly off-kilter, questionably entertaining posts. About librarians.
It all started a few weeks ago, when I was at the American Library Association conference and texted my friend Ali about the Book Cart Drill Team World Championships taking place the following day. I’ve posted about this a few times, but in case you’re not familiar with this nerdtastic phenomenon, check it out:
And check the team names: “Gett Down with Your Funky Shelf,” “Texas Arrangers,” “Night of the Living Librarians,” “Dewey Decimators,” on so and forth.
But I don’t want to make fun of librarians . . . I heart libraries and librarians. Growing up in
Bay City Essexville Hampton Township, I would’ve totally lost my shit way earlier in life if it weren’t for the local library. Glenda was the head librarian who got me to read any number of interesting books, who really shaped my literary development for years and years. And even now, when books flow like water into my office on a near-daily basis, I still have a special fondness for going to Rush Rhees to pick up something specific or just wander the “P“s. And I think librarians are interesting people. They think different than the rest of us. They see information sourcing in surprising, fun ways. They are resource ninjas.
And a seemingly large number of them have no self-consciousness whatsoever when it comes to doing crazy shit on camera. Which is adorable. Or something.
So after the ALA, I started noticing librarian video after librarian video, each a tad bit more absurd than the last. Like, let’s start here:
I’m not entirely sure what that’s all about, except maybe that libraries need more music? And pimping?
Regardless, that’s nothing compared to this insane rapper who’s probably not the best representative of lip-synching, the beauty of the Dewey Decimal system, or librarians in general:
What’s most perplexing is the fact that this kid decided to do a remix version of the Dewey Decimal Rap in his bedroom. YouTube! Cognitive surplus at its finest!
But the real winner is this video from the University of Washington information school:
Still blown away that this video goes on and on FOR OVER FOUR MINUTES. It’s one thing to come up with a cute :45 Lady Gaga meets librarian bit, but to do the whole song? . . . Wow.
Theme running through all of these? Libraries are cooler when they include dancing. And librarians half-embrace the whole “sexy librarian” stereotype. So, to reinforce that—just a little bit—and to cleanse your viewing palate, I’ll finish this off with My Morning Jacket’s somewhat sentimental librarian love song (which, admittedly, is one of my summertime crush songs):
Have a good weekend!
“Rambling Jack—what’s that?”
“A novel. Novella, I guess.”
“Yeah, it looks short. What is it, a hundred pages?”
“Sorta. It’s a duel language book, so really, only about… 50 pages total.”
“And this—what. . .
Many authors are compared to Roberto Bolaño. However, very few authors have the privilege of having a Roberto Bolaño quote on the cover of their work; and at that, one which states, “Good readers will find something that can be. . .
In Josep Maria de Sagarra’s Private Life, a man harangues his friend about literature while walking through Barcelona at night:
When a novel states a fact that ties into another fact and another and another, as the chain goes on. . .
César Aira dishes up an imaginative parable on how identity shapes our sense of belonging with Dinner, his latest release in English. Aira’s narrator (who, appropriately, remains nameless) is a self-pitying, bitter man—in his late fifties, living again with. . .
Originally published in French in 2007, We’re Not Here to Disappear (On n’est pas là pour disparaître) won the Prix Wepler-Fondation La Poste and the Prix Pierre Simon Ethique et Réflexion. The work has been recently translated by Béatrice Mousli. . .
Even though the latest from Jean Echenoz is only a thin volume containing seven of what he calls “little literary objects,” it is packed with surprises. In these pieces, things happen below the surface, sometimes both literally and figuratively. As. . .
Who is this woman? This is the question that opens Xiao Bai’s French Concession, a novel of colonial-era Shanghai’s spies and revolutionaries, police and smugglers, who scoot between doorways, walk nonchalantly down avenues, smoke cigars in police bureaus, and lounge. . .