Hair, Love Songs, and the Number 42
Not even through the first chapter of the Lilith novel and it is already turning into a love song to my beloved New Orleans post-Katrina. I am in love with that city, no doubt about it. I am, in fact, in love with the entire state of Louisiana. I was born and raised here - I have lived in every part and explored most of it extensively. What is it about this place? I love the literature, the art, the music. I am fascinated by how we natives look at Her - we are fiercely loyal bunch, in spite of the fact that everyone is aware of how many problems there are to fix.

Was having a discussion about that very topic the other day on the way home from a trip to Baton Rouge - what it is about this place that spawns so many artists. We speculated that it is the poverty, or perhaps the unique mixture of cultures found here, or just the history in general, hardships and prejudices, various booms and busts. Suffering inspires art, no doubt about that. And we have had more than our share of suffering over the years.

Recently the powers that be have been pushing very hard to update us, to try and attract more technology-driven industries here. Good idea, we need that for sure, but I wonder what the face of Louisiana would look like with a Silicon Valley shine to it. Of course, if nothing's done about the coast, we'll all be underwater in 50 years anyway and it'll all be a memory. Recorded in the art...

Very cool interview/photo essay with Neil Gaiman by Susan Henderson over at LitPark this morning. It's all about Neil's HAIR. I laughed, but strangely enough, I couldn't look away. Interspersed with cool quotes from Fragile Things.

Speaking of Louisiana Art, etc. I caught up on my Anne Rice news last night. I had sort of lost touch/interest in her since she moved from New Orleans to California. I vaguely recalled she had published a new book on the life of Christ, but I hadn't even bothered to look at it. At one time I was a huge fan of hers - she was at the height of her popularity when I was in college going through my obligatory vampire interest stage. Seems in the interim she has regained her faith in God and has returned to the Mother Church. Interesting. I am curious about how that happened. I lost my faith long ago but I like to read accounts of both sides of the great debate. Am currently reading The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins. A few years ago I followed C.S. Lewis' journey back to faith. I may go and buy the book simply to read her notes on the subject. It is THE great question which in one form or another shapes every life on this planet. Where do we come from, where are we going. We all want to know. At the moment I am leaning towards Dawkins' view that we are evolutionarily hardwired for it. We want an explanation for things, and in the absence of something obvious, we make it up. It is part of our DNA.

In any case, human nature fascinates me, and a great part of Lilith's character stems from her relationship to her father Yahweh, so I have a dual interest in exploring the subject.

07 February 2007


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