* The cigarette was brushed out of Jean-Paul Sartre's hand for an exhibition in 2005. Sartre smoked, but not in the commemorative picture years after he died. He was also one of the great sexual athletes of history. So was his lifelong love, Simone de Beauvoir, a switch-hitter whose girl friends captured Sartre's fancy now and again. One of these resisted his advances and near broke his haunted heart, however. It was not easy being a king of sex, so uneasy lies the head wearing that crown.
— from Jean-Pierre Boule’s review of TETE-A-TETE: The lives and loves of Simone de Beauvoir and Jean-Paul Sartre, by Hazel Rowley (Chatto and Windus) in TLS 3/17/06
* We hear complaints about senseless acts of violence, but never praise for sensible ones. Is this wise?
* At Bread Kitchen during Xmas week, “Tum te tum tum” (Drummer Boy) overhead for the thousandth time this season is bad enough. But what of the woman at the next table picking up on it and humming along lightly?
* Comedian Shelley Berman had a shtick where he spoke of dropping ashes in his lap while driving. Parked at a light on a busy street, he brushed furiously at his lap, looked up and there was an elderly female bus passenger looking at him censoriously. Likewise, I looked down while on a Bread K stool and saw that my belt was undone and my fly was unzipped. Oh boy.
* Old joke, but in view of recent highly publicized developments, is it time to revive "Crook County" as replacement name? No? Whatever.