Tag Archives: son

I’m no genius

I thought I had read Thomas Wolfe, but it turns out I haven’t.

That didn’t stop me from going to see the movie Genius, which details the publication of Wolfe’s first two novels,  and his relationship with his editor Max Perkins.

image

Jude Law’s Wolfe is a loud, melodramatic Southerner, self-involved yet low in self-esteem.  Colin Firth as Perkins is his solid, steady opposite,  the voice of reason who, despite his better judgment, is drawn to Wolfe’s charm and bravado.

I expected the movie to focus on their editorial process,  and it does. But instead of passing any judgments on Wolfe as a writer,  it celebrates their relationship – –  more like a father and son than editor and writer.

Both of their families suffered at times from their single-mindedness, but no one more than Wolfe himself.

I now have Wolfe’s first book Look Homeward, Angel on hold at the library. I suppose I was charmed as well.

E for effort

When Rory and I were walking home from Central Park this morning, we crossed paths with a women and her young son, who were presumably on their way to school.

She was explaining what each of the letter grades (A, B, C, D, F) in school meant, to which he replied:

“Why is there no E?”

gradesHuh. Good question.

She said, “There simply isn’t one,” which I didn’t think was a very satisfactory reply.

But I didn’t know the answer either,  so I asked the Google machine.

Turns out until the middle of the 20th Century, most schools in the United States used the four letter grading system E, S, N, U — Excellent, Satisfactory, Needs Improvement, and Unsatisfactory.
When they transitioned to the current system, they eliminated the E to avoid confusion.

So, ma’am, that’s what you should have told your little boy.

Gonna have to mark you down for a lack of research.