Thursday, July 07, 2005

Last night's blingo night was fun. Kudos to everyone involved. Brian Joseph Davis put on an exciting and funny game of $10 Pyramid and Kyle Buckley deftly steered the good ship blingo through sometimes choppy waters. I think blingo is Christina Palassio's invention, so she has proven herself a genius. Everyone seemed genuinely pleased, and as a blingo caller, I had a good time.

There were no conventional readings, and there's nothing wrong with this, I figure, because no one promised any. It's healthy for people in the lit community to get together to hang out and do things other than listen earnestly to one another's work, and a little levity and conviviality is necessary in relation to an undertaking that can be so solitary. I'm guessing as well that this sort of night is a good way to bring people from outside this lit community in and to give them a sense of what we're doing.

So my discomfort when I came home last night had nothing to do with the event itself (I want to underline the fact that I had a great time and that I think the event was a success). I suppose what I feel is a certain lack of a particular band in the spectrum of live literary activity in Toronto (Nate Dorward's Gig series probably occupies this spot but on an irregular basis). So, yes, what I realized yesterday was that I haven't had a chance to hear Stephen Cain or Shannon Bramer (to choose the two Coach House poets with books published this spring in attendance last night) actually read from their new books at any length. I haven't engaged with their work in any kind of focused manner except on the page, and, unless I'm missing something, there haven't been any opportunities to do so in Toronto. I'd like to hear them read, and I'd like a chance for something like immersion in their work.

To that end, I hereby announce, for real, a new reading series. I want to call it the Boring Reading Series just to be cheeky, but I don't think it's a good idea. Who knows. Maybe there's a reason people don't put on this kind of thing too often and I'll find out. So yeah, monthly maybe, maybe every two months to start, one reader for two twenty-minute sets or two readers for twenty minutes each. Break in between. Possibility for discussion or something after if people are into it, perhaps off site. I'll shoot for September to start. I think it will be fun, and maybe I'll even get to hear Bramer and Cain read at it.

2 Comments:

Anonymous jpf said...

hey Mark,

I had a brief reading series in Montreal called HACKS! I personally thing The Boring Reading Series is a great name.

Jon

1:18 PM  
Blogger Mark said...

I just worry that not everyone will appreciate it.

"HACKS!" is great, by the way.

Mark

3:45 PM  

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