Out of Space

I read somewhere the other day that nobody born after 1935 has walked on the moon. Because it’s now a thing of a distant, unrepeatable past. It sounded very sad.

Does anybody know why it was all shut down? And please don’t say funding cuts. Funding cuts are not an explanation. They are an excuse.

Why does nobody care any more about space exploration? If people cared, it would find some reflection in political debates, for instance. And it doesn’t. Isn’t it weird that people just lost interest somehow? I know it used to be a very big deal.

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Santa Klara uhartea

OK, so the most beautiful place in the world? The one I can’t stop staring at? The one that gives me feelings of extreme peacefulness?

It’s called Santa Klara uhartea.

I had absolutely no idea.

Clara with a c is very common, so it wouldn’t be an interesting coincidence. But Basques write it with a K.

That’s so cool.

More on Book Blurbs

And if you think about it, it’s just stupid counterproductive marketing. I almost didn’t buy Olinka, although I’m very into young Mexican authors and I read maniacally. But revenge thrillers about corrupt gentrifiers are not my thing. And somebody who is into that will read the first couple of pages, get disappointed, and send the book to hell.

What’s funny is that the novel is, at the core, about the many ways in which machismo is destroying Mexico. And the same machismo is destroying the book’s sales.

I’m so hung up on this because I almost didn’t read Olinka. And then it turned out to be one of the best books I read all year.

Book Notes: Olinka by Antonio Ortuño

There is a lot of sexism in promotional book blurbs. Olinka is described as a revenge thriller set in the midst of gentrification projects in Guadalajara. But that’s all crap. The novel is a family drama that could be used to write a script for a telenovela. But since the author is male, the idiot who wrote the blurb had to try to massage the novel into the thriller genre. Which it definitely isn’t.

Olinka is a great family drama, unhurried, gossipy, detailed, and enjoyable to read.

Ukrainian Election

As a result of Ukraine’s parliamentary elections, a comedian will have to negotiate with a pop singer to get a majority in the parliament.

Obviously, the comic and and pop star are puppets for extremely corrupt and vicious oligarchs. But voters are do intensely dim-witted that they take these figureheads seriously.

People get exactly the kind of government they desire and deserve, so whatever.

Oysters

We tried local oysters yesterday, and they are. . . real oysters. They taste like a gulp of sea water.

Do you know how in the US there is this crazy habit to bake oysters under a mountain of cheese and weird sauces? That’s because they are completely tasteless and it’s an effort to make them taste like something. Cheese, usually. Brr, what a horror.

Here, oysters are served unmessed with. And it’s exactly how they should be.