I have come across the most amazing surrealist garden, and it is in one of my favorite places: Mexico. I just put this on my List of Places I Absolutely Must See.
You can find more pics and info at Lady Lavona's Cabinet of Curiosities (oddly, that's what I call the sex-toy drawer in my nightstand). It reminds me of the movie Labyrinth. And I expect the Great God Pan to come strolling along, grinning, asking me to dance. I would.
A Serious Confession: I do not like Neil Gaiman.
There. I've said it. All right, a year or so ago, I was gaga for Gaiman. What happened?
I read The Graveyard Book first, and to say I loved it would be an understatement. And in a whirlwind of sudden, absolute admiration for this marvelous author, I proceeded to read American Gods, Neverwhere, Coraline, and one of the Sandman comics.
And I really, really disliked them all. I wanted to like them. I mean, he wrote The Graveyard Book, which I loved, and besides that... everybody knows that Neil Gaiman is a Genius, First Class, Do Not Pass GO Just Squat On Boardwalk. I mean, everybody knows, right? It's a Universal Fact, right?
I loved Good Omens, but that was co-written with Pratchett. I wonder if what I love about it is due to Pratchett, or Pratchett's influence on Gaiman. Either way, it's only in GO and TGB that I find the characters having depth, and that the writing rises about the mundane.
Also, there was this thing. Twitter.
And here I devolve into a discussion of social media and why I am increasingly disillusioned. Two of the first people I followed on Twitter were Gaiman and Joe Hill. I have unfollowed both since. Because I dislike their writing? No. I unfollowed both because they're pretentious twats who use Twitter as their blog instead of, you know, blogging and tweeting the link. Not to mention, the amount of smugness and self-importance exuded by these two knows no bounds. I may not agree with someone's political views or personal philosophies, and I wouldn't unfollow based solely on that. And perhaps there is some degree here of sexism, and why Men Succeed Where Women Don't -- because of their apparent natural born arrogance, their absolute certainty of their own intensely high worth. Meh. I don't know. They're both fucking annoying, so I hit unfollow and breathed a sigh of relief.
Will I still buy Hill's books? Sure. Gaiman? No. And not because of Twitter, but because I really, really don't like his writing.
Man. I felt totally uncomfortable saying this out loud, but last night, on a whim, I googled, "I don't like Neil Gaiman." Hello, fellow peeps! I had no idea there were so many of you! Including Quentin Crisp. Crisp make a valid argument, and he arrived at it the same way I did, essentially -- through reading, and through a vague, growing disenchantment that turned into outright dislike.
That's all. One last thing: someone just tweeted a link to a site that lets you keep track of who unfollowed you on Twitter. Unlike LJ, you don't receive notifications. One day you've got 60, next day 58, and who is gone? Who knows? Well, this site knows. While that's interesting -- and the majority, I find, are spammers who you didn't follow back within a 7-day time frame -- what I disliked was the company's assertion that you can use this to "call out unfollowers!" Dear lord. Are we that juvenile? Yes, actually. I see it all the time on Twitter. I don't get that -- why would you do that? If they weren't spammers, maybe they just decided you no longer interested them. So? Maybe you don't have anything in common with them. Whatever. It's akin to people on LJ posting that they've been de-friended. Get the fuck over it. Are you serious? Since when did following and friending become lifetime committments? And when did unfollowing and de-friending become personal attacks?
Maybe I've just got too much on my plate these days (and I do, and if I don't get some serious time off soon, I'm going to have a meltdown), but in the vast universe of What's Important, this sort of stuff is barely asteroid dust. Let them burn on entry, shooting stars when you look up. And then turn back to your book and your flashlight, snuggle deeper into your sleeping bag, and remember that in the dark, the monsters in the forests come out to snatch away people who are foolish enough to sleep alone in fields at night. ;-)
Hasta la vista, babies. I've got fic to write. But first, some french toast and coffee...